Protect agricultural lands

I am appalled to learn of the recent proposal from your agriculture minister.

Along with many others, I am appalled to learn of the recent proposal from your agriculture minister that the Agricultural Land Commission’s mandate be expanded to take economic development priorities into account (specifically those of the oil and gas industry) and some of the land commission’s powers in the north should be handed over to the Oil and Gas Commission.

Shockingly, as published in the Globe and Mail, the minister’s proposed changes extend to the whole of the province.

The specific proposals are:

— Modernize ALC decision-making to reflect government priorities.

— Create two ALR areas with different rules.

— Change the ALC’s legislative mandate, in one or both ALR areas.

— Remove some decisions from the ALC.

— Allow community growth applications to be decided by local governments.

— Modernize ALC operations by moving the ALC into the Ministry.

All this when the world’s food supply is in peril, in a province where less than 5 per cent of the land is arable, and faces constant pressure from industry and developers.

Premier Clark, if economic development priorities are of prime importance, I trust you recognize that with its $10 billion a year contribution, our agricultural sector is B.C.’s prime producer of truly renewable energy.

The preservation of agricultural land brings economic benefit not only of employment, health, environmental protection and tourism, it also ensures sustainable food supplies for a future threatened by world over-population and climate change.

Premier Clark, it is unsettling that the cabinet minister entrusted with this important sector should be the voice suggesting measures to weaken agriculture in our province.

I hope the citizens of B.C. can look forward to your firm commitment to strengthen the Agricultural Land Commission, and to the rejection of Minister Pimm’s dangerous proposal.

Barbara Lambert


Just Posted

(Drive BC photo)
Vehicle incident closes Highway 3 east of Osoyoos

Drive BC says to avoid the area until the road is clear

Osoyoos chef Murray McDonald was ecstatic upon realizing he scored the $1 million guaranteed prize in the June 2, 2021 Lotto 6/49 draw. (Contributed)
Osoyoos chef ecstatic after bagging $1 million Lotto 6/49 win

Chef Murray McDonald was at home and ready to doze off to sleep when he got a text from his wife

(File photo)
Additional service coming to two Penticton bus routes

Both service changes were made to meet increased demand over the summer

It's believed the Sacred Hearts church on PIB land burned Sunday night. (Aileen Mascasaet Maningas)
UPDATE: Two churches on band land in South Okanagan burn to the ground

Sacred Hearts church on Penticton Indian Band land was reduced to rubble

The border crossing into the United States is seen during the COVID-19 pandemic in Lacolle, Que. on February 12, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
VIDEO: Border quarantine to soon lift for fully vaccinated Canadians

Eligible travellers must still take multiple COVID-19 tests

A home on Cameo Drive sustained major damage due to an early morning fire Monday, June 21. (Roger Knox - Morning Star)
UPDATE: Fire sparked during Vernon home renovation

Heavy black smoke from Cameo Drive home, no one inside

The new Civic Memorial Park will incorporate pieces of the 80-year-old arena it replaces. (Artists rendering)
Pieces of Civic Arena reclaimed for new Vernon park

City centre space to incorporate wood from the historic arena

By protesting uninvited in First Nations’ territories, conservationists are acting in a neocolonial or paternalistic manner, says Huu-ay-aht Chief Robert Dennis. Photo by Heather Thomson
A closer look: do Vancouver Island First Nations support the war in the woods?

First Nations/environmentalist old growth alliance uneasy, if it exists at all

Salmon Arm RCMP responded to three incidents involving women concerned for their own safety between June 13 and 17, 2021. (File photo)
Salmon Arm RCMP respond to concerns about women being watched, followed

In one of three incidents a woman was invited into a vehicle but declined

A blood drive in support of 1-year-old Rielynn Gormley of Agassiz is scheduled for Monday, June 28 at Tzeachten First Nation Community Hall in Chilliwack. Rielynn lives with type 3 von Willebrand disease, which makes it difficult for her to stop bleeding. (Screenshot/Canadian Blood Services)
Upcoming blood drive in honour of Fraser Valley toddler with rare blood condition

The Gormley family has organized a blood drive in Chilliwack on June 28

Traffic will be diverted through Radium along highways 93 and 95 as a part of the closures. (Claire Palmer photo)
Extended closures to Trans-Canada Highway announced east of Golden this fall

It’s the second round of extended closures as a part of Phase 4 of the Kicking Horse Canyon Project

Kelowna Cabs’ dispatchers will be coming back to work now that their union and the taxi company have come to an agreement. (Facebook/Kelowna Cabs)
Kelowna Cabs dispatchers set to go back to work

The taxi company and the dispatchers’ union have reached an agreement

Wild Sky Sisters
Wild Sky Sisters: Cancer Season

Wild Sky Sisters is a joint venture between Angela Moffitt and Tamara McLellan

Most Read