LETTER: Herbicide use a bad idea



"BC Hydro seems to have forgotten they are a publicly owned company, and should be doing what is best for their owners."

I have lived in Glade for almost 40 years. Shortly after we moved here in the 1970s BC Hydro cut a power line straight up the centre of the hill at the south end of our community. It is an eyesore, but it does supply much needed pasture for the deer and elk, and a good hunting area for local hunters.

While I can’t really say I like that power line, I do recognize that it is necessary, and I have always, to date, been impressed that BC Hydro has chosen to keep the vegetation down by manual brushing. By doing so they provide much needed employment for forestry workers, and enhance the viability of the land for winter forage for the native ungulates.

Yesterday while enjoying a coffee break on my veranda, I noticed that the top of the power line that goes up the hill was no longer green, but brown. On closer inspection with my binoculars it became clear to me that the power line had been sprayed with a herbicide killing all the vegetation. I later took a drive to the Bombi summit where it was evident that they had sprayed all the power line from there to Glade.

So I assume they have now decided to save money in the backcountry by spraying all the backcountry lines. This in my opinion is a bad idea that will have very negative impact on all the animals who live on, or graze on that land, and also on the hunters who eat those animals.

BC Hydro seems to have forgotten they are a publicly owned company, and should be doing what is best for their owners. Shoving smart meters and the Site C dam project down the public’s gullet, and spending public money to facilitate the destruction of the geography of the Kootenay River by dredging it is not doing what is best for the public.

This morning I heard on the news that a Site C protester got a little carried away and ended up getting shot by the RCMP. I don’t know whether the public will ever hear the details of the man’s death, but I wouldn’t be surprised if he was one of the land owners who is having his farm expropriated to make way for Site C. No doubt those poor people are plenty frustrated.

But be assured the Independent Investigations office, which the CBC announcer referred to as the “police watchdog” is on the case. Trouble is we have had two police killings in the West Kootenay in the past nine months, and we haven’t heard a bark or a whimper from said dog, so I suspect we won’t hear any more about this man’s death either.

Seems like the general public is happy to keep their head buried in the sand. I think it is about time they pulled it out of there.

Rod Retzlaff

Glade

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