Our six precious community mountains need to be protected

It seems we were not heard.

Our six precious community mountains need to be protected

Our six precious community mountains need to be protected

Over 1,200 signatures were collected for our Dec. 19 meeting. Approximately 400 people attended, 36 people spoke, the majority asking North Cowichan council to pause all logging on all six mountains. After the 2.5 hours of speeches neither the mayor nor council mentioned the request for pause of logging all six mountains, they didn’t mention the petition; or respond to the very reason why we were all there. I am in disbelief after all the passionate offerings, requests, studies, letters, personal stories — it seems we were not heard.

I understand Stoney Hill received a pause from logging and that there will be consultation about future logging, but with whom and how?

How can this new council and mayor create a new way to manage and invite new practices for forestry management? How can the voices we heard on Dec. 19 be heard and represented in a way that reflects the diverse perspectives and possibilities for new sustainable forestry management systems? Imagine if we actually paused long enough to hear the voices of the past and the future? Imagine if all logging paused and we actually took the time to research, educate, learn and hear from scientists, specialists and First Nations about new their ideas and concerns? We could create something amazingly sustainable. We could become even greater leaders in forestry and specialists in eco-tourism, while maintaining jobs and incomes for local community offering educational university tours, biking, hiking and manage sacred grounds etc.

We are in a new time and we are asking for a new perspective on how to maintain, care for and respect our forests, so that in generations to come, there will be trees, oxygen, salmon, trails to hike, and places of healing in nature. It is interdependent and possible.

Cari Burdett