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NOTE: In September 2016, the directors of the CoalWatch Comox Valley Society voted to dissolve the society. All references to CoalWatch Comox Valley Society are now of historical relevance only, and the society has ceased to exist.

CoalWatch Comox Valley Society is a society registered in British Columbia in 2010. Its registration number is #S56944.

The purpose of CoalWatch Comox Valley Society as defined in our Constitution under the Society Act is: A citizens group caring for our land, air, and water and promoting a healthy future for our communities.

Our current focus is to identify and research issues regarding the proposed Raven Underground Coal Mine Project near Fanny Bay.

The current officers and directors of CoalWatch Comox Valley Society
are:

President - John Snyder
Vice President - Campbell Connor
Secretary - Lynne Wheeler
Treasurer - Terry Avery
Director - Maggie Paquet
Director - Jim Burgess

Please get in touch with us on the Contact page or by email at info@coalwatch.ca.

We welcome your donations - please use the Donate buttons on the right of your screen. Note that CoalWatch is a non-profit society, but does not have charitable status for tax purposes.

An open letter from CoalWatch

An open letter from CoalWatch Comox Valley Society, February 25, 2011

Over the last 14 months, during which CoalWatch has been identifying and researching issues regarding the proposed Raven Coal Mine Project, it has become abundantly clear that there is a potential for significant widespread environmental effects from the project and that there is widespread public concern about the project.

The concerns about water and the aquifers in the area impacted by the proposed mine have been one of the key issues identified by Coalwatch during our research. The fact that the aquifers in the region surrounding the Raven Coal Mine Project have not been adequately mapped and have been classified in a study by VIU as “vulnerable” is very troubling. CoalWatch has been consistent in our request that the mapping and modeling of the aquifers in the entire region affected by the Raven Project be completed at the beginning of the environmental assessment process rather than at the end of the process. It’s just common sense to have all the aquifer mapping and modeling data completed at the beginning of the decision making process.

The other numerous issues and concerns regarding the Raven Coal Mine Project should also be addressed in the most rigorous environmental assessment available, a joint federal/provincial independent expert Review Panel with Public Hearings. The current “comprehensive review” is in our opinion, inadequate. An independent expert Review Panel would include Public Hearings rather than Public Meetings, and afford the opportunity of cross examination of outside witnesses. The Review Panel would also be at arm’s length from the government, it’s more transparent, and more likely to result in findings of environmental impacts.

CoalWatch has repeatedly asked both the Federal and Provincial governments to support our position on the aquifer mapping and modeling; and that the environmental assessment of the proposed Raven Coal Mine Project be referred to a joint federal/provincial independent expert review panel with public hearings. Given the magnitude of this project, it is both regrettable and amazing that in all cases these requests for support have been denied.

The full impact of this proposed coal mine cannot be adequately known without an environmental assessment by an independent review panel; and comprehensive aquifer mapping and modeling of the entire area impacted by this mine. Numerous citizens, environmental groups, and relevant local governments are also on record as supporting our requests. The residents of the Comox Valley, Port Alberni Valley, and all the residents of Vancouver Island deserve nothing less than the most rigorous environmental assessment available.

Given that both the CEAA and BCEAO, in our opinion, are refusing to exercise due diligence regarding the environmental assessment of the Raven Coal Mine Project, the Officers and Directors of CoalWatch Comox Valley Society have voted unanimously to oppose the Raven Coal Mine Project, and that our public messaging regarding the project shall reflect this opposition.

Notwithstanding the above, CoalWatch will continue to identify and research the issues surrounding the Raven Project and to advocate for a robust public participation during the entire environmental assessment process; and CoalWatch will also continue to be an active participant in that environmental assessment process.

On behalf of the Officers and Directors of CoalWatch Comox Valley Society,

John Snyder
President, CoalWatch Comox Valley Society

Click here to download the open letter


Minutes of the Special Meeting of the
CoalWatch Comox Valley Society Officers and Directors
February 23, 2011

GIVEN that CoalWatch believes that there is a potential for significant widespread environmental effects from the Raven Coal Mine Project and that there is widespread public concern over thisproject and…

GIVEN that the full impact of this coal mine project cannot be adequately known without:

1. an environmental assessment by a joint federal/provincial independent expert review panel with public hearings.

2. complete aquifer mapping and modeling of the entire region effected by the Raven Project being completed BEFORE the environmental assessment goes any further and …

GIVEN that CoalWatch has repeatedly asked both the Federal and Provincial governments for these studies and that these requests have been denied and …

GIVEN that numerous citizens, environmental groups, relevant local governments, and newly formed groups opposed to the Raven Project have requested these measures and …

GIVEN that both the CEAA and BCEAO, in our opinion, are refusing to exercise due diligence regarding the environmental assessment of this Raven Coal Mine Project …

I hereby make a motion that the CoalWatch Comox Valley Society officially oppose the Raven Coal Mine Project, and that our public messaging regarding the project reflect this opposition.

After no discussion, the vote to approve the motion was unanimous and the motion was carried.

Click here to download the minutes of the special resolution.

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