Longtime agrologist and author Wendy Holm, editor of Damming the Peace: The Hidden Costs of the Site C Dam, will be hosted by the Nelson Chapter, Council of Canadians, in a book tour and public discussion on Tuesday, July 17th at 7 p.m. at 717 Vernon Street in Nelson.
Since the 1970s, the Site C Dam in northeastern British Columbia’s Peace River Valley has been touted by B.C. Hydro and successive governments as necessary to meet the province’s increasing energy needs. With its enormous $10 billion price tag, the dam would be the largest public works project in B.C. history. It would be the third dam on the Peace River, and destroy traditional unceded territory belonging to Treaty 8 First Nations.
In December, 2017, the B.C. government announced that construction of the Site C Dam would continue despite the opposition of many citizens, cost overrun, dubious economic viability, geological conditions and ongoing legal challenges from landowners and First Nations.
Wendy Holm brings another perspective to the case against Site C, that of the production of crops. “We import more than 60 percent of vegetables that we could grow here,” she says. “With its alluvial soils and class one climate for agriculture, the Peace River Valley has the cropping capability of the Fraser Valley, but with higher yields, because of the longer days throughout the summer. Instead we are dependent on drought stricken California for produce.
“Site C is an economic white elephant. We do not need the Site C Dam. It is time to close it down,” says Holm, who has received two Queen’s Medals for contributions to community.
“I guess I’m just a girl who can’t take no for an answer.”
Also on the program will be conservation advocate and former Nelson city councillor Candace Batycki, who focuses on protecting ecosystems for threatened and endangered wildlife. Candace is s program director for Y2Y BC (Yellowstone to Yukon). a leading sponsor of the annual Paddle for the Peace event on the Peace River near Fort St. John.
Damming the Peace presents the independent voices of many citizens describing every important impact of the dam, including sustainability energy expert Guy Dauncey on future energy demand, and whether there is likely to be a need for Site C electricity; an interview with aboriginal activist Helen Knott on the dam’s assault on traditional lands and culture, in particular Indigenous women; broadcaster Rafe Mair on how party politics corrupts political leadership; and writer Joyce Nelson on the connection between the Site C dam and continental water sharing plans.
Prominent water activist and chair of the Council of Canadians Maude Barlow says. “The fight to stop Site C is not over. Damming the Peace is our roadmap.”
Wendy Holm will sign copies of her book before and after the event. Royalties from book sales will be donated to the Nun Wa Dee Stewardship Society through the Yellow Stakes campaign to support the Prophet River and West Moberly Firsy Nations in their legal challenge of the project.
Doors open at 6:30.
For further information, call 250-352-9871, or contact info@councilofcanadians.