FVRD agrees to ‘play nice’ with Metro Vancouver

Fraser Valley Regional District directors voted to play nice with Metro Vancouver at a special board meeting Tuesday and take part in consultations on possible waste-to-energy facilities.

Fraser Valley Regional District directors voted to play nice with Metro Vancouver at a special board meeting Tuesday and take part in consultations on possible waste-to-energy facilities.

But that doesn’t mean the fight is over to stop Metro Vancouver’s plan to burn garbage.

“We’ve lost round one, but the fight isn’t over,” Abbotsford director John Smith said at the board meeting.

“We also lost round one in the fight against SE2,” he added, but eventually defeated the proposed gas-powered electricity plant in Sumas, Washington in 2006 after a groundswell of opposition by Fraser Valley residents.

He called Metro Vancouver’s plan to burn garbage using WTE technology “a financial disaster waiting to happen,” and predicted that in the end no incineration plants will be built in the Lower Mainland.

Abbotsford Mayor George Peary brought the issue to the board in a letter to FVRD chair Patricia Ross following her reaction in media reports to B.C. environment minister Terry Lake’s approval last week of Metro Vancouver’s solid waste management plan.

Ross had told reporters that no matter what technology is used, the Fraser Valley airshed cannot afford another point source of pollution, and she urged residents to “bombard” the minister with emails of opposition.

But Peary said that “accusatory approach” won’t help the FVRD achieve its goals, and could have a negative impact on the region’s economy.

“I do not advocate an approach which calls for protests and speaks negatively of our provincial politicans,” he said, but a “thoughtful strategy on how we respond to the approval.”

The environment minister’s approval included provisions for consultations between Metro Vancouver and the FVRD, along with creation of working groups to address air quality concerns.

Mission Mayor James Atebe agreed the FVRD needs to have input into Metro Vancouver’s plan, but he called on the minister to define exactly what he meant by “consultations” and to find a way to pay for the region’s participation in the talks.

He also called on FVRD staff to invite the minister to next month’s board meeting.

Chilliwack Mayor Sharon Gaetz said the public apology Metro Vancouver chair Lois Jackson made to Ross shows “everyone is trying to play nice in the sandbox,” but added that her opposition to “any form of incineration” continues.

Jackson had indirectly compared Ross’s “absolute” opposition to WTE to Norwegian killer Anders Breivik during a radio talk show.

Yale director Dennis Adamson didn’t agree with the idea of letting the larger Metro Vancouver regional district walk all over the smaller FVRD and build its WTE facilities.

“I don’t think we should shut up,” he said. “I think we should scream and yell … this is no time to be quiet.”

But Dick Bogstie, area director in McConnell Creek/Hatzic Prairie, said the minister has made his decision, and now the FVRD needs to work with Metro Vancouver.

“We’ve got to work with Metro Vancouver, we have no choice,” he said.

rfreeman@theprogress.com

twitter.com/paperboy2

 

Just Posted

Rohan arul-Pragasam, Chilliwack School District’s interim superintendent, has been appointed superintendent of schools effective June 15, 2021. (Chilliwack School District)
Interim position becomes permanent for Rohan Arul-pragasam at Chilliwack School District

Arul-pragasam said he was ‘humbled to continue as a steward’ in new role as superintendent of schools

PlanCultus was adopted in 2017 as a guiding document for Cultus Lake Park. (Cultus Lake Park Board)
More affordable housing options could be coming to Cultus Lake Park

Online survey opened on June 14 to gauge opinion on plaza redevelopment eyed for Village Centre

The Abbotsford International Airshow is back for 2021 with the ‘SkyDrive’ concept.
Abbotsford International Airshow returns for 2021 with ‘SkyDrive’

New format features a drive-in movie type experience, show set for Aug. 6 to 8

A young couple walks through the Othello Tunnels just outside of Hope. (Jessica Peters/Black Press)
Hope’s Othello Tunnels fully open to the public

Geological testing proved the area safe enough to open for the first time in more than a year

Raeya Evie Duncan was the 100th baby born at Chilliwack General Hospital for the month of May. She is seen here with her parents Alysha Williams and Andrew Duncan on June 12, 2021. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
Baby boom in Chilliwack as record number of infants born at CGH in May

‘COVID babies are coming out,’ says dad of 100th baby born at Chilliwack General Hospital last month

Maxwell Johnson is seen in Bella Bella, B.C., in an undated photo. The Indigenous man from British Columbia has filed complaints with the B.C. Human Rights Tribunal and the Canadian Human Rights Commission after he and his granddaughter were handcuffed when they tried to open a bank account. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO-Heiltsuk Nation, Damien Gillis, *MANDATORY CREDIT*
VIDEO: Chiefs join human rights case of Indigenous man handcuffed by police in B.C. bank

Maxwell Johnson said he wants change, not just words, from Vancouver police

Tk’emlups te Secwepemc Chief Rosanne Casimir stands outside the former Kamloops Indian Residential School after speaking to reporters, in Kamloops, B.C., on Friday, June 4, 2021.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Kamloops chief says more unmarked graves will be found across Canada

Chief Rosanne Casimir told a virtual news conference the nation expects to release a report at the end of June

A woman wears a vaccinated sticker after receiving a COVID-19 vaccine at a vaccination clinic run by Vancouver Coastal Health, in Richmond, B.C., Saturday, April 10, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C. ranks among highest in world in COVID-19 first-dose shots: health officials

More than 76% of eligible people have received their 1st shot

A screenshot of the First Peoples Cultural Councils First Peoples’ Map. (First Peoples Cultural Council)
Online resource blends B.C.-Alberta’s Indigenous languages, art and culture

Advisor says initiative supports the urgent need to preserve Indigenous languages

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

An artists conception of the new terminal building at the Pitt Meadows Regional Airport.
Air travel taking off in B.C., but lack of traffic controllers a sky-high concern

There will be demand for more air traffic controllers: Miller

Canadian Armed Forces experts are on their way to North Vancouver after a local homeowner expressed worry about a military artifact he recently purchased. (Twitter DNV Fire and Rescue)
Military called in to deal with antique ‘shell’ at North Vancouver home

‘The person somehow purchased a bombshell innocently believing it was an out-of-commission military artifact’

Amy Kobelt and Tony Cruz have set their wedding date for February, hoping that more COVID-19 restrictions will have lifted. (The Macleans)
B.C. couples ‘gambling’ on whether COVID rules will let them dance at their wedding

Amy Kobelt and Tony Cruz pushed back their wedding in hopes of being able to celebrate it without the constraints of COVID-19

A plane is silhouetted as it takes off from Vancouver International Airport in Richmond, B.C., May 13, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Report calls for airlines to refund passengers for flights halted due to COVID-19

Conclusion: federal help should be on the condition airlines immediately refund Canadian travellers

Most Read