Author Archive | Steve Corscadden

Anchorage for coal ships off Gabriola Island

The issue of anchorages off Gabriola Island was first brought to our attention by Clyde Wicks in the September October 2015 edition of the club newsletter and posted on this website on Sept. 28/15.

The Pacific Pilotage Authority is proposing five anchorages for coal ships be approved off Gabriola’s north-east side for large vessels bound for Port Vancouver and other locations.  The site for the northern-most anchorage is due east of the homes located at the north end of The Strand/south end of Sandwell Provincial Park.  The sites of the other four anchorages are between the end of Whalebone Drive and Eva Road just northwest of Dragons’ Lodge.

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The following letter was published in Times Colonist June 25, 2016 12:43 AM

Gabriola anchorages being carefully studied

I am writing to assure the residents of Gabriola Island and other concerned individuals that Fisheries and Oceans Canada has heard their concerns about the proposed establishment of five new anchorages for large vessels along the northeast coast of Gabriola. I would also like to clarify DFO’s role in the review of this project.

The proposal was put forward by the Pacific Pilotage Authority, a Crown corporation under the responsibility of the minister of transport. The PPA is conducting an anchorage review, risk assessment, environmental review and public consultation for the project. As part of this process, the PPA has submitted the project to DFO so the department can assess the potential impacts to marine mammals, fish, fish habitat and aquatic species at risk.

The conservation and protection of Canada’s marine resources is DFO’s highest priority. We review proposals to ensure proponents avoid, mitigate and offset serious harm to fish, compliant with the Fisheries Act, and provide for the sustainability and ongoing productivity of commercial, recreational and aboriginal fisheries. Fisheries Act authorizations are required for projects that cannot avoid harming fish or fish habitat.

As the proposed anchorages are within the jurisdiction of Transport Canada, general concerns or questions about public consultation opportunities should be directed to Transport Canada through their online comment form tc.gc.ca/eng/ contact-us.htm or by calling 1-866-995-9737.

Rebecca Reid, Regional Director General
Pacific Region
Fisheries and Oceans Canada

Public Access to Wilderness Areas

The BCWF and its members know how important public access to the wilderness is. Allowing more people into the backcountry helps protect it from poachers and vandals but increasingly, outdoor enthusiasts are finding gates across roads that used to be open.

That’s why the BC Wildlife Federation has launched a campaign to press landlowners and government to restore public access to our shrinking wild spaces.

What is called “Right to Roam” is enshrined in many northern European nations,. but in Canada, only Nova Scotia protects the right of people to cross uncultivated private land to reach fishing lakes and streams.

A white paper prepared by the Environmental Law Clinic at the University of Victoria. Public Access to Privately Owned Wild Lands is calling for the B.C. government to take action. Meantime, for a good example of the challenges facing backcountry hikers, read Vancouver Sun’s coverage of Spine Trail and public access

Van Sun Acess 4

Club Facilities Orientation Tour

Every third Saturday of each month the club will hold a brief (approx. 20 minute) tour of our facilities. All members and potential members are encouraged to come out for this informal/informative tour.

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The tour will cover what facilities are available at what times, do’s and don’ts, as well as basic etiquette rules. Everyone is welcome with no need to preregister. The tour will start at 2pm (on designated dates) and will begin at the archery range which is the first structure on the right as you cross the bridge into the property.

United Nations Firearms Marking System

One of the Liberal Party’s Firearms Policies.

One of the firearms policies that the liberals announced in their elections platform was to ‘Immediately implement the imported gun marking regulations that have been repeatedly delayed by Stephen Harper’.

Most of us have heard lots of rumours as to exactly what these regulations are and how they will effect law abiding gun owners.  The Canadian Shooting Sports Association (CSSA) has done an analysis of the effects of these regulations. CSSA states that there will be an enormous cost involved in complying with these regulations and in order to stay in business this enormous cost can only be absorbed by being passed on to the consumer, and the cost of a new firearm in Canada will skyrocket, perhaps more than $200 per firearm in the first five years, per CSAAA (Canada’s industry organization) estimates.  This is the average cost applicable to any firearm regardless of retail price.  It also makes the assumption that the importer can withstand the astronomical set up costs and is still in business.

If you are interested read the full article and draw your own conclusions.

Liberal Party Firearms Policy

Liberal logoBefore the Oct. 19, 2015 Election BCWF compiled a list of 13 questions that they think candidates in all ridings across BC should answer. The questions touch on issues related to hunting, fishing, trapping, firearms and habitat sustainability, among other things. Only the Liberals and Green Party Responded to this letter.

The Canadian political landscape has changed to a solid Liberal majority for new Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. The Liberals were elected in 184 constituencies; the Conservatives won 99 seats, the NDP 44, the Bloc Quebecois 10, and the Green Party leader held her lone seat on Vancouver Island.

Now that the election is over, we can expect the Liberal government to implement its platform promises.  All of the items covered in the 13 questions were things we all want done, but for firearms owners it is important to examine their policies more closely in that area. Continue Reading →

Chase River Remediation

Upper Chase Gravel Bank 2The Chase River runs through club property and over the years erosion and gravel accumulation from upstream runoff have changed the nature of the flow to the extent that the banks were at risk at several locations and the area behind the caretaker’s residence was at risk from flooding and trees that had become a falling hazard due to erosion of their root systems.

In order to solve the flooding problem Larry Burnett and his Grounds/Wetland crew took on the task  of correcting all the problems that have built up over the years.

We began by retaining COPCAN EXCAVATING, our long time supporter  in projects around the club, to solve the problems.    After receiving all the permits to allow us to remove the gravel that had washed in and to create fish habitat the work began. The project took one week to complete. Continue Reading →

Coal Ship Anchorages off Gabriola Island

Ancored Coal Ship

This information was first brought to our attention by Clyde Wicks in the September October 2015 edition of the club newsletter.

The Pacific Pilotage Authority is proposing five anchorages for coal ships be approved off Gabriola’s north-east side for large vessels bound for Port Vancouver and other locations.  The site for the northern-most anchorage is due east of the homes located at the north end of The Strand/south end of Sandwell Provincial Park.  The sites of the other four anchorages are between the end of Whalebone Drive and Eva Road just northwest of Dragons’ Lodge.

The area from Entrance Island to Thrasher reef has always been one of the most productive fishing areas around here. Locals anglers harvest up to 10,000 fish per year out of this stretch of water according to DFO creel data. When the fishery collapsed back in the mid-90’s it remained the only area that continued to hold salmon and one we could still go to with the expectation of actually catching something.

It is a very unique marine environment because it sits between two major points and is tucked in behind Entrance Reef. We regularly catch rock fish, ling cod and the occasional halibut while trolling for salmon from Whalebone to the Grande.

The Pacific Pilotage Authority, which is a crown corporation, is proposing to turn our favourite fishing spot into an industrial parking lot for 900′ long freighters that are waiting to go into Vancouver to load or unload. Continue Reading →