Cottonwood Lake is a popular recreation site near Nelson. Photo: Bill Heath

Public meeting Wednesday to discuss Cottonwood Lake logging

Concerned citizens have invited experts and politicians

A group of Nelson area residents will hold a public meeting on Wednesday about logging near Cottonwood Lake.

The private land operation owned by the Nelson Land Corporation could result in a clearcut on both sides of Highway 6 from Giveout Creek to beyond the Apex ski area and around Cottonwood Lake.

“Given that logging could begin as early as March 1 and come to within five metres of the water, time is of the utmost importance here,” said Andrew McBurney, one of the organizers of the meeting and a resident of the area.

Speakers will be grizzly bear biologist Michael Proctor, Selkirk College wildlife instructor Doris Hausleitner, and avalanche expert Marc Deschenes.

McBurney said there will be RDCK directors, Nelson councillors, and a representative of Whitewater Ski Resort in attendance.

“There’ll be plenty of open discussion and a civil exchange of ideas and possible solutions for saving this breathtaking place,” said McBurney.

“This isn’t a meeting aimed at vilifying anyone. It’s an effort to find a win-win for everyone involved, with the help of local and regional government and the public.”

Discussion topics will include how the land could be purchased by the community and which branches of government might be involved.

Also on the agenda: the wetlands above the lake, slope stability, the downstream dangers of debris damming the creek, potential effects on the abundance of wildlife and fish in the area, and the potential impact on tourism.

The event will be held at the Nelson Rod and Gun Club at 6 p.m.

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