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General News · 22nd October 2009
Noba Anderson
This report will be a brief check-in on many fronts as a lot is happening right now.

Climate Action – A few issues ago, I announced both the formation of the Cortes Climate Action Group and my prioritization of putting climate action on the regional agenda. The Cortes group has now completed a Cortes Green House Gas (GHG) Inventory available on line at www.cortescommunityplan.ca on the ‘climate action’ page. The group will soon be conducting a community consultation process and will be making GHG reduction recommendations for Cortes. Their efforts will be key in helping us design GHG reduction targets as part of our new Official Community Plan (OCP).

At the regional level, much is in the works. At our Strathcona Regional District strategic planning session in August, sustainability and climate action was identified as one of our key priorities. At the Union of BC Municipalities Convention in Vancouver in late September, I convened a meeting for SRD board members and staff with municipal climate action leaders and non-profit groups who support local governments’ climate work. From that, we have one scheduled board training on climate change and another one or two in the works. Next is to ensure that the SRD 2010 budget prioritizes climate action work. Lorraine, your OCP Education Coordinator, and I are also working to bring a few provincial climate action leaders to Cortes.

Official Community Plan (OCP) update – The OCP steering committee has been busy helping design the process for the 2010 review work. I expect that we will be issuing a Request for Proposals in November for professional coordination of the review and we are discussing how to make that entire process as Cortes-generated as possible. We have just launched the OCP website www.cortescommunityplan.ca so check in regularly as it will frequently have new content. It will also become more interactive as we go.

I am very pleased to announce that Brenda Hanson, Sandra Wood and Sarah O’Shannessy are your Seniors/Elders Official Community Plan (OCP) Coordinators now through May. They will be learning from seniors about the previous OCP review processes so as to inform the design of the upcoming review. They will also be ensuring that the review is seniors and elders friendly and accessible and that issues of importance are well reflected in the revised community plan. If you have information to share, questions or concerns, please contact Sarah (935 0282, s_oshannessyhotmail.com), Sandra (935 6676, sandrawoodtelus.net) and Brenda (935 0162 or bhansontwincomm.ca).

Klahoose Shellfish License Gorge Application - The Provincial Government's 'Front Counter BC' has received an application by Klahoose Shellfish Limited Partnership for a 'License of Occupation' in the Gorge Harbour. The application is for a 15.7 hectare shellfish aquaculture lease and can be viewed at http://arfd.gov.bc.ca/ApplicationPosting/viewpost.jsp?PostID=13685. Integrated Land Management Bureau is accepting comment until November 6th. On their website, you will find information and a link through which to submit comments. Ken Albrecht, Kenneth.Albrechtgov.bc.ca, 250-751-3106, with the Ministry of Agriculture and Lands, is the contact person for this file.

BC Shellfish Growers Association turns 60! - Last week I attended the 60th birthday celebration of the BCSGA. A good number of proud Cortes shellfish growers were there and it was a good chance to meet people who are working both in the industry and in its advocacy. I truly hope that in the next short while, and through the OCP review, we can find some peace and real solution to this historical Cortes sore spot. If you are willing to share your proactive and solutions oriented thoughts with me, please do!

Fish Farms - At the June SRD Board meeting, I presented a fish farm resolution that was forwarded to the Union of BC Municipalities convention in September. It called on the Provincial and Federal Governments to immediately allocate sufficient funds to ensure the establishment of a closed system aquaculture innovation and development fund, and also to create and implement a plan to transition open net-cage salmon farms to closed containment system aquaculture as soon as commercially available. We now need to forward this agenda in what ever way we can.

I have also had many questions about the status of the Grieg Seafood fish farm application at Gunner Point. At this time, there is nothing new to report since it was on the SRD agenda in June. It is currently in the hands of Grieg and the Province. I cannot anticipate when it will come back to the SRD for fourth reading, nor am I able to receive further comment at this point. I thank you for your understanding and all of your passionate comment.

In gratitude, Noba Anderson