Monday, April 16, 2012
TODAY IS BIOFUEL PROTEST DAY IN ELMIRA
The local media are picking up on this story for three reasons. It's environmental, it's controversial and it's new. CTV carried the story plus interviews last evening. The interviews were with local resident Michael Purves-Smith, Mayor Todd Cowan and proponent Chuck Martin. This evening's protest in the Woolwich Township building's parking lot was also advertised although they suggested 5:30 pm. whereas my understanding is it will be closer to 6:15 pm.. I would describe the CTV story as informative and as good balanced reporting. Saturday the Waterloo Region Record carried the same story on the front page of their local section namely: " Green energy plant gets green light". Numerous issues include the province having removed municipal zoning and control rights as well as the province apparently ignoring an excellent alternate location in Woolwich Township that would have relieved local concerns over odours , health issues and heavy traffic.
Dan Holt in the Record story alluded to the issue that strikes a chord with me. It is the trust issue or more precisely lack of trust issue. Local Elmira residents are advised that the Ontario Ministry of the Environment will monitor and enforce odour and environmental issues. Really? Since when? Elmira has a half century plus history of environmental degradation of all kinds and quite frankly throughout that period the M.O.E. and their predecessors have walked hand in hand with each and every local polluter. The M.O.E. have and deserve zero trust from this community based on their overwhelming sellouts to industry and coverups of pollution. Whether Rothsay Concentrates, Scavenger Recycling, Chemtura Canada or Varnicolor Chemical, the M.O.E. local history includes sweetheart deals, tipoffs to industry and criminal charges against their employees. M.O.E. assurances are nothing but smoke and mirrors.