To: Doug Donaldson, Minister of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development
cc: Tim Sheldan, Deputy Minister of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development, also chair of Forestry Innovation Investment, with branch offices in Vancouver, China and India.
cc: Andrew Weaver, MLA, Green Party
cc: Ravi Kahlon, MLA from Delta North (my constituency)
cc: Lana Popham, Minister of Agriculture
Subject: Preservation of BC forests eco-system.
Honourable Mr. Donaldson, Mr. Sheldan, Mr. Weaver, Mr. Kahlon, Ms Popham,
I start this letter by congratulating in being able to jointly form a government replacing the last Liberal Government. I hope this partnership survives full term and produces tangible results towards long term betterment of the province.
I write this letter out of serious concern regarding the future of BC forests, as well as survivability of our biodiversity as well as general health.
I know currently we are having a serious wildfire across much of the state and the cumulative dust particles in the air is making the sun a hazy orange blob in late evening sky. But my concern goes further than the immediate fire.
I draw you attention to the fact that aerial spray of glyphosate (Roundup Herbicide) over our forests, has been approved by the provincial government and usually administered by private logging corporations for many years going into decades without proof that the practice is safe. Further, I draw your attention to the fact that there is absence of evidence that sufficient research has been done and observed by the BC Government on any long term effect of it on our environment, forest health, biodiversity, or trickle down effect on human health.
I have in the past tried to get information from the BC ministry any proof that it has seen evidence that glyphosate has no adverse effect on forests before approving its use. Sadly, I have not been shown any evidence of it by the previous BC ministry. I have reason to believe the BC Government has never seen any proof that glyphosate spraying on our forest is at all safe, and yet has been approving it out of a continued bad habit, year upon year.
Further, I have, through freedom of information act of the BC government, requested for data on the actual quantity of glyphosate used over BC forests, year upon year, from the first year of application till date. Regretfully, I have not gotten what I asked for, but got only a very small part of the answer comprising of a few localized hand application of glyphosate over small bushes. The reason I did not get the larger use data of aerial application is, I was told, the BC government does not know how much has been used, and may need to contact logging corporations to find the answer, hoping they keep the record.
I was asked if I would be willing to cough up a thousand odd dollars to pay for the man hour costs of the previous BC Government that would be needed to try to collect the information from the private corporations. I declined to pay that money and have been thoroughly disappointed in the shabby manner in which our ministry takes care of forest health.
I believe it is quite possible that forests that are weakened by excess use of herbicides can get vulnerable to not just to fire damage, but also many other maladies leading to continuous decline. I believe we may be converting our diverse forests into mono-culture plantation for the purpose of profit making by selling wood, rather than ensuring that a healthy forest remains to support a healthy environment and what biodiversity still remains in Canada.
I believe the government may need to seriously start looking into long term health of the entire British Columbian eco-system, and separate that from short term money making schemes and false projection of economic boom or job creation that seems to concentrate on simply exploiting natural resources till what is left is neither natural nor resourceful.
I also draw your attention to the fact that Canada has overtaken Brazil as the fastest destroyer of forests and eliminator of the earth’s carbon sink on this planet. I have a serious question for all of you – what are you prepared to do about it?
I am copying Mr. Weaver since I expect the green party to be more aware on environment protection and hope to hear his views on this.
I am copying this also to Mr. Kahlon, my constitutional representative, since I have had a pre-election talk with him on glyphosate and its excessive presence in our food system, which makes Canadian food to be about the most toxic on earth, as explained in the e-book I authored named “Poison Foods of North America”.
I am copying this also to Ms Lana Popham, minister of Agriculture, who I have met long ago when she was an opposition MLA, because she is currently the minister of Agriculture, and I intend to send her a note about the need to focus on the most prevalent biocide in our food (glyphosate), the fact that Canadian food is the most toxic on earth, and the need to reverse the total silence this issue gets from all levels of Government in our country.
Apart from being the author of the book already mentioned, I am am an activist that tries to raise awareness, I have multiple levels of contact and communication, appeal, petition, and other efforts ongoing with different levels of our government, and will likely use this letter too, to influence and encourage others to join hands at a grassroots level to apply pressure to our newly formed government everywhere in Canada and North America, to pay more attention to saving our forests , environment and food system, rather than focus on how fast to exploit and degrade it.
I am curious why the Deputy Minister of Forest Management, Mr. Tim Sheldan, is also a chair of Forestry Innovation Investment group with apparent partnership with China and India, and if that is geared to find ways to attract foreign funds to help destroy our forests even faster and sell what is left to those countries, or if there is another reason for his involvement in that organization.
In summary, I ask the following
1) Show the people what evidence the government has, that application of glyphosate is not harmful to the total forest eco-system.
2) If the Government has not seen any such evidence, then immediately restrict the use of glyphosate, or any other kind of biocide, till a complete, and thorough investigation can be undertaken by entities that cannot be influenced by either politicians, governments or industry and will be unbiased and neutral. Share all information with the public.
3) Canada overtaking Brazil as the worlds worst de-forester – what are you prepared to do about it?
4) Explain why the Deputy Minster of Forest is the chair of Forestry Innovation Investment and what is the purpose of this groups existence and what involvement China or India has in it.
Please take this letter as a public interest issue that will be shared with the public, including any response I get, or do not get, from our new BC Government.
I have another, less serious request to the government – that we stop the practice of addressing elected government officials as “honourable”. It gives the impression that if one is not elected or not in politics, one is not honourable enough.
In my book, elected officials are public servants, not overlords. Therefore, elected officials should represent humility, not arrogance of power. Anyhow, this is a minor observation, not related to the main issue of glyphosate over forests and our real plan for preservation of forest eco-system.
Should you require, I shall be more than pleased to see any of you face to face about this.
10891 Cherry Lane, Delta, BC, V4E 3L7, Canada
Is there anyone willing to get himself/herself videographer reading this out?
I already have myself talking into a camera enough times, and kind of tired of see my same-old face challenging our government.
We need more voices, more faces, more humans.
Anybody interested, let me know. Interested parties write to firstname.lastname@example.org