Tuesday, February 8, 2011


There is not much in public life that gets my approval.

But I am delighted to see the city fining people who cut down trees by the bushel, even trees in their own yard.

I understand a little trim here and there.

But I am at a complete loss to fathom why anyone would cut down big and beautiful and healthy trees in an urban area.

My friend Geoff lives on a small acreage on Salt Spring Island. The log house he and his family built with their own hands almost 40 years ago backs onto a bit of a forest. The air is magnificent. You can sense in every way the bounty of oxygen, and you are reminded how different is the air in town.

Today's story is about folks on Southwest Marine Drive performing what amounts to a massive clear cut just after being told by the city to stop.

I suppose when you live on SW Marine Drive you have the understandable illusion that you are above the ordinary rules.

Here is something that is even more puzzling.

Why are most of the city tree-cutters recent arrivals from China and India?

You would think that in countries where millions are crowded into cities a new environment with greenery abundant would be cherished.

Apparently not.


motorcycleguy said...

This is a real problem that is exacerbated by recent mass sign-ups by both parties in their respective leadership campaigns. Our traditional values and our respect for the natural surroundings we are blessed to have in BC are not shared. There is a point to be made about accepting other cultures, but they also have to respect ours. These are actions that result in permanent, irreversible change. This is not just a matter of going to different supermarkets or places of worship, or even changing street signs. This plays into the hands of corporations that find it economically rewarding to devastate our wilderness areas for such activities as draining alpine lakes for private power. We now have voters that do not appreciate what is happening, yet have a big say. I would have to admit this gives the appearance I am a bigot, but so be it. I feel it is important to take a stand. There are many places in the rest of Canada (or the world for that matter) with fewer trees, lakes and rivers for those with a fear of such things. We need a mechanism to teach our new Canadians just how much we revere our natural surroundings, and how permanent the results of their actions are.

Anonymous said...

Blatant disregard after being told (in person) by a city inspector to stop tree removal should involve more than a hefty fine and replanting of trees. Fines aren't a deterrent for the well-heeled.

Hope required replacement trees are the biggest, fastest growing variety available for the site.

Wish they had to take up a shovel themselves and participate in the replanting.

David in North Burnaby BC said...

"You would think that in countries where millions are crowded into cities a new environment with greenery abundant would be cherished."

Why? You just described what they did in their home countries. They're told not to change a single little thing they do just 'cause they came to the airport lounge known as "Canerduh" so why would they?