Complaints abound about proposed coal mine

Dear editor,
Re: Proposed Raven Underground Coal Mine, Bear Deposit and Anderson Lake project of Compliance Energy.
In speaking with John Tapics (Compliance CEO) recently, he told me that it was not up to him what was included in the draft AIR/EIS; it was up to the CEAA and EAO. This had been my understanding all along.

Dear editor,

Re: Proposed Raven Underground Coal Mine, Bear Deposit and Anderson Lake project of Compliance Energy.

In speaking with John Tapics (Compliance CEO) recently, he told me that it was not up to him what was included in the draft AIR/EIS; it was up to the CEAA and EAO. This had been my understanding all along.

I put the question to him, “What if Compliance Energy thought something was important but neither environmental agencies were concerned.” He replied, that “then it would go into the dAIR/EIS.”

In speaking to the press, Mr. Tapics has repeatedly emphasized the “interest” the public has shown in the mine. He must consider the public “interest” (read opposition) in the mine very important.  Therefore, I believe that all comments at the public meetings are important to Mr. Tapics, and substantial weight must be given to each and every comment and voice, whether written, spoken or sung. In the case of singing, all but a few of the attendees at the Union Bay public meeting sang the song, sung to the tune of “I’ve been working on the railroad.”

I submitted the song, to be recorded as a comment, however, given 400+ voices sang the song, this should be recorded as 400+ comments. Only those who felt the same way about the mine were singing.

On another note, I’d like to point out that:

• The proposed economic impacts assessment is inadequate. The dAIR/EIS emphasizes benefits but leaves out entirely the costs to the taxpayer, and it relies on limited indicators.

• The project’s overall sustainability (16 to 20 years only) indicators are inadequate; they should consider long-term viability of local/regional economies, maintenance/strengthening of biophysical values and maintenance/strengthening of healthy communities.

• There was and is no consultation with Denman Island, the largest population centre in proximity to the mine. The dAIR/EIS should outline how the Denman Island community will be directly consulted on this project as NO on-island consultation has taken place to date.

• There is a lack of clarity on the inclusion of Denman Island in all relevant study areas, analyses and ongoing monitoring. The study areas should include noise field studies in all seasons; air quality in all seasons; visual and aesthetics assessment including light pollution in all weather conditions — we get lots of low cloud cover here.

In closing, I find it appalling that neither the CEAA nor the EAO takes into consideration the amount of CO2 that will be generated by this project. Not only during the mining process, the transportation, etc., but the actual burning of the coal in Asia.

The last time I checked we all live on the same planet with the same atmosphere.

Heather McLean,

Denman Island

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