As most of you know the Glacier-Howser project was put on pause by the Environmental Assessment Office last year. AXOR has been collecting data and information over the past year and is expected to resubmit their application in the coming months. This means Glacier and Howser creeks are still at risk.

In one week, on Tuesday June 1, the EcoSociety, in partnership with the Wilderness Committee will be hosting a ‘Rivers at Risk’ event entitled ‘Saving Kootenays Rivers from a Power Gold Rush’.

Speakers include Rex Wyler, co-founder of Greenpeace and spokesperson from B.C. Citizens for Public Power, Gwen Barlee and Joe Foy from the Western Canada Wilderness Committee, Gary Diers, an organic farmer who lives near Glacier and Howser Creeks, and myself, as the EcoSociety representative.

Together the speakers will cover the big picture of power and sustainability, the recent history of power development in B.C. including the impacts of the Clean Energy Act which was released in April, a look at power in the Kootenay region, including an update on Glacier-Howser, and how residents can respond effectively to projects that put Kootenay rivers at risk.

The event is set up so each speaker will present for about 10-15 minutes, some with films or slide shows, and the event will follow with a panel.

I know I don’t need to highlight to you the significance of the discussion around IPPs and run-of-river projects in the Kootenays. However, this is a critical time for the future of energy development in the West Kootenays, and this event will work to keep the public informed and updated.

If you can make it:

Tuesday June 1 at 7 pm at Capitol Theatre (241 Victoria, Nelson) Admission is by donation to cover the event costs.

Raelynn Gibson

Climate and Conservation Coordinator

West Kootenay EcoSociety


Speakers Bios

Rex Weyler, Communications and Research Support, BC Citizens for Public Power
Rex Weyler is a passionate advocate for the protection of B.C.’s wilderness, wildlife, and public power. He is a co-founder of Greenpeace International and author of nine books, including Greenpeace: The Inside Story. In 2005, he received a Social Justice Award from the Urban Environmental Policy Center in Los Angeles recognizing his lifetime achievements.

Gwen Barlee, Policy Director, Wilderness Committee
Gwen Barlee’s diverse education and experience includes social work, film production, and web development, and she is a past executive team member of the Victoria chapter of the Council of Canadians. For the last several years she has focused on protecting B.C.’s rivers from private power development.

Joe Foy, Campaign Director, Wilderness Committee
Joe Foy has been the driving force behind many of the Wilderness Committee’s campaigns to successfully protect spectacular areas, including the Elaho Valley, Boise/Pinecone-Burke, and the Stein, Carmanah and Lower Walbran Valleys. His passion for the wild shines through in his speeches.

Gary Diers, Organic farmer, Argenta
Gary has lived in Argenta for over 30 years. He is an avid hiker and photographer of the spectacular wild areas of the Kootenays. He lives near Glacier and Howser Creeks and has been active in the campaign to protect them since the beginning. He has been active in the environmental movement and is incredibly familiar with the wilderness of the Kootenays.