The following extensive material was provided to MetroVanWatch by frequent contributor Peter Van Der Velden.
Threats mount as the Governments of Canada and British Columbia deliberately contravene and alter laws to permit devastating destruction of the lower Fraser River and Estuary in British Columbia
What remains of the Fraser Estuary is being threatened by development undertaken and proposed fort the benefit of the Port of Vancouver. Along the lower Fraser River, only 15–20% of the marsh, mudflats, eelgrass and river habitats of a century ago remain.
- The Fraser, the world’s greatest salmon river, is in the top 50 Heritage Rivers in the world.
- The estuary, critical habitat for fish and wildlife, is Canada’s largest wintering habitat for waterfowl and birds of prey.
- As a part of the Pacific Flyway it serves as:
“An international crossroad of bird migration routes from 20 countries and three continents”. (http://www.reifelbirdsanctuary.com/fraser.html).
- The estuary is a regular foraging area for the endangered Southern Resident Killer Whales (Orcas).
- The Orcas depend on the Chinook Salmon from the Fraser for 90% of their diet.
Global significance and designations of the Fraser River
- Western Hemisphere Shorebird Reserve Network Site of Hemispheric Importance (highest designation)
- Ramsar Site as a Wetland of International Importance
- Listed by Birdlife International as an IBA (Important Bird and Biodiversity Area) in Danger
The Port of Vancouver is promoting numerous major industrial projects that will destroy this amazing, globally significant jewel. The Fraser River, the estuary and the Salish Sea are threatened by this industrialization.
The Governments of Canada and British Columbia collaborate with the Port of Vancouver on projects built on public and private lands. Tax dollars are used to provide the infrastructure servicing these projects.
$10 billion in federal, provincial and municipal tax dollars have been spent on infrastructure to serve the Port of Vancouver and vested interests. The Gateway Transportation Collaboration Forum is planning to spend another $10 billion tax dollars.
The Federal and Provincial Governments collaborate with the Port of Vancouver on major industrial developments and related infrastructure and then claim no authority with Port decisions.
Until 2008, Metro Vancouver’s ports were run by local authorities with port expertise and experience: Continue reading