Letters to the editor for the week of July 25th 

Seeking assistance

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Seeking assistance

On Saturday, July 20 I was surprised, dismayed and more than annoyed to learn that someone had chosen to trespass on to my Emerald Estates property and demolish a shed.

Of course it is an understatement to state that I was surprised and annoyed. Imagine how you would feel if someone chose to go on to your property and demolish or damage a structure on it. The property was unoccupied at the time so an accusatory finger cannot be directed at tenants.

No vehicles were parked in the driveway or on the street so one may assume that the miscreant or miscreants did not drive there.

 A friend, new to Whistler, while driving around Emerald Estates, stopped in the driveway of the property around 1:30 p.m. to show the house to his wife and noticed an adult male working on the shed. He sent me an email at 3:30 p.m. advising me of his observations.

I viewed the email a short time later. Together we drove to Emerald around 4:30 p.m. and were surprised to discover that the shed had been completely demolished with the walls, flooring, roofing and contents pushed further down the slope into a depression. The structure was standing at 1:30 p.m.

All I can definitively say about the person responsible for this damage is that he must be fairly strong as he moved some fairly large timbers, old railway ties and walls 10-feet wide and about seven-feet high. No machines were involved.

 Is this a harbinger of things to come? Am I likely to discover when I next get to my property that trees have been topped or cut down completely or that my house has been demolished?

I am requesting the help of people in the neighbourhood, or anyone who was in that area, on Saturday afternoon and who saw or heard anything that could help in identifying the person or persons responsible for this act of trespass and wanton destruction.

 Whistler is truly a delightful place to live where neighbours are normally friendly, dogs can be left unattended and kids can play unmolested. We should not stand by idly when acts such as this of trespass and destruction (take place). I can be reached via email at emeraldchalet@gmail.com.

Your help will be appreciated and will be treated with the strictest confidence. Alternatively, you may wish to contact the RCMP Whistler detachment and speak to officer Porchetta who is handling the file.

Keith Fernandes

Whistler/Vancouver

Not so 'clean' energy?

Paul Kariya's spin on the "clean" energy sector in British Columbia ("The Value of Private Sector Clean Energy," Pique, July 18) is that all British Columbians benefit from this sector. The truth is, however, that all British Columbians are being ripped off thanks to the BC Liberal government and its buddies at Clean Energy BC: we will be faced with skyrocketing utility rates, our wild rivers will be destroyed and BC Hydro bankrupt.

In addition, our water and power will be controlled by the Independent Power Producers (IPPs) who have made generous contributions to the BC Liberal Party. A basic search on the BC Elections website shows that Innergex/Creek Power Inc. contributed $981,567 to the BC Liberal Party between 2005 and 2012.  IPPs have no incentive to promote energy conservation, as it will affect the bottom line. Green energy? Our children and grandchildren will inherit an industrial wasteland.

 Kariya, executive director of Clean Energy BC, stated that the "clean" energy sector has created thousands jobs. He failed to explain that river diversion projects, in particular, create virtually no long-term, full-time jobs. Innergex/Creek Power Inc.'s Upper Lillooet River Hydro Project, which will reduce the magnificent Keyhole Falls (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gYlIFSESFas) to a trickle, will only create one or two full-time jobs. The $2.6 billion of capital expenditures Kariya referred to highlight the massive infrastructure river diversion projects require, which raises many red flags about this "clean" energy.

B.C. taxpayers are kept in the dark about how much IPPs are paid for their power because the BC Liberals have decided that the electricity purchase agreements should be confidential. It is therefore impossible to verify Kariya's claim that "the average price paid by BC Hydro in 2012 to private sector suppliers was $68/MWh." According to BC Hydro, for example, the average Levelized Plant Gate price for the 2008 Call for Power was $100.70 per MWh (See table 3.6 on page 12 at http://www.bchydro.com/content/dam/hydro/medialib/internet/documents/planning_regulatory/acquiring_power/2010q3/cpc_rfp_process_report.pdf).

Kariya also failed to explain that California refuses to import energy from B.C. because it does not consider river diversion projects in B.C. as green energy and that it suffered blackouts due to Enron's corrupt trading practices, which created havoc with the spot market prices.

Kariya forgot to mention that river diversion projects, such as the Innergex/Creek Power Inc.'s Upper Lillooet River Hydro Project (ULRHP) and Kwagis Power Ltd.'s Kokish River Hydro Project should never have been approved by the provincial government, because government biologists expressed their opposition to these projects based on Kokish River's very high fish values and the ULRHP's impact on threatened grizzly bear populations.

Kariya should have explained that BC Hydro, in addition to carrying a debt of $15 billion, has $50 billion worth of "contractual obligations," as stated by BC Hydro CEO, Charles Reid, on June 18, 2013.

Contrary to Kariya's claim that clean power projects are built on time and on budget, the 550+ supporters of Keep Pemberton Wild are delighted that construction on Innergex/Creek Power's Upper Lillooet River Hydro Project, which was to have started in May 2013, has not yet commenced.

In addition, Innergex/Creek Power clearly underestimated project costs. It had originally budgeted $420 million for three hydroelectric facilities on the Upper Lillooet River, Boulder Creek and North Creek. Innergex/Creek Power Inc. now says that the construction of two hydroelectric facilities (Upper Lillooet River and Boulder Creek) will amount to $434.1 million.

Listen up Innergex/Creek Power Inc. and other IPPs: we do not want your river diversion projects to ruin our wild rivers, kill off species at risk, bankrupt BC Hydro or result in rate increases to line your shareholders' pockets.

Nor do we want amenities in exchange for our wild rivers.

Louise Taylor

Pemberton

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