Site C Hearings Hit the Road to First Nations Communities This Week-Guess What They Heard

Members of the Treaty 8 Tribal Association at the opening to the Site C public hearings in Fort St. John

The senior governments' joint review panel learned at least one thing this week: No matter where you go, there you are. The carnival wrapped up hearings on Thursday in Prince George where Chief Rowan Willson of the West Moberly First Nation the community most affected by the dam's flooding, said "It's unnecessary. They don't need to flood the valley in order to do this. BC Hydro operates dams, and that's what they want, they want a dam and they're not looking at alternative means."

BC Hydro's representatives open and close each session with a statement where they seldom fail to mention among their talking points their contention that Site C would be a green energy producer. Green eh! The carbon footprint of Site C is enormous. "Three and a half billion cubic meters of concrete will have to be poured and one and a half million cubic meters of wood will have to be burned, not to mention the use of heavy equipment for 10 years." - Reimar Kroecher

As the Stop Site C website explains, "Electricity from Site C is not needed to power B.C. households and businesses. B.C. taxpayers will foot the $8 billion bill for this project at a time when B.C. Hydro is already deeply in debt." So, the presenters continued this week to ask, "why do it?"

Demand, markets are driven by demand, supply simply tries to meet it. Conservation, the only viable alternative, gets very little time in the hearings as it does in most places. Conservation would work but it wouldn't make any contractors rich, it wouldn't provide any short-term union jobs, wouldn't pay any interest to the banks or 'excess' power to speculate on down south. In Site C's case these last groups, the special interest groups, are the demanders it seems. They, like all extractors and speculators demand the same thing, MORE for their group.

Almost every presentation in opposition to the damn dam [9 outta 10] questions the necessity of the damn thing. Reimar Kroecher's excellent and well researched article  'Eight reasons to stop the Peace River Dam', gives a concise backgrounder on the 'necessity' issue as part of its well researched reasons none of which even touch on my premise that conservation, and only conservation [other than collapse] can bend the demand curve downward.

More, more, more...The hearings will resume in Jan. but it's hard to be optimistic that this panel hand-picked from the 'acceptable' candidates could see the balance between short term profit and long term ecology any differently than the Northern Gateway panel did a couple days ago. There is a schism, one side honestly believes their standard of living is non-negotiable and that humans are clever enough to keep inventing new magic ways to outsmart nature's limits. The other...well the other side basically calls bullshit. The mud, usually found closer to bullshit than magic, lends its voice to the other's call.