bulldozer at work stripping forest. (mid photo) Old growth trees in this
area are over 100 years old and 33 m / 100 feet or more in height. All
of this could have been avoided and the line placed over already opened
land away from homes.
wide and destructive as this forest corridor is, if it had not been for
the 2000 people who adopted trees along this path, Sask Environment would
not have imposed conditions that prevented it from being fully twice as
wide, totally stripped and chemically sterilized. (SaskPower's usual construction
methods in forest) I have been told that SaskPower is using this latter,
massively destructive method of routing through forest in the Meadow Lake
area of Saskatchewan. They have learned NOTHING
from the Christopher Lake / Friendly Forest experience.
irony of it all is that the fight so many of us have waged to have decency
and common sense prevail was a fight for the children and grandchildren
of the SaskPower project team and executive who planned and executed this
"'crime." (Such acts against the environment and against our common
future needs to be included in Canada's Criminal Code!) The fight was to
preserve some environment in tact so that it would be there for the enjoyment
and health of those future generations. No only have these SaskPower people
needlessly destroyed something precious in the present, they have destroyed
a real part of the future of their own children. While this is so clearly
true in this situation, there are far too many parallel situations happening
all around us. If we care for this earth that God has given us, if we care
for the generations that are to follow, we need to do much better than we
have done so far. I pray that SaskPower people and all of their kind be
reborn with "new eyes" that will enable them to see what is around
them in a new way, and that with a new heart they will be better stewards
of the future. "To those whom great power has been given, much will
be asked." What will be their answer on that day?
tree had a base diameter of over 30 inches and I counted 106 growth rings.
This tree was here before my grandfather came to Canada.
few days ago these giants were standing regal, alive and part of a complex
old-growth forest ecosystem. Not only have these trees been destroyed, but
so too the whole, wonderful and complex forest ecology of which they were
a part for so long. These are the trees SaskPower always refers to as "brush"
and about which they declared our land value would go up with the removal
of these trees!
is the adoption marker
that was tied to this old giant. SaskPower has promised in a letter linked
above, that they would collect these markers and return them to the person
to whom they belong. This marker was still on the tree as it lay on the
ground. The printed declaration declared: 'SaskPower, if you kill my adopted
tree, send this marker to me at (person's mailing address). I have supplied
SaskPower with a full list of names and mailing address so that markers
that have either a faded name or address can be identified and returned.
We wait to see if this promise is another SaskPower deception.
March 26 I walked along this same area and found the same marker lying
on the ground amid the ripped branches and crushed tree trunks left on
the forest floor. I have taken this marker and will return it in person
to the person whose adopted tree was destroyed here.
of East-West section of King's Loop being destroyed. It is in this corridor
that nearly all of the tree adoptions were located. February 26, 2003
spruce trees that are still standing in this photo are slated to be taken
down. The corridor stripped here is only the section of technical "road
allowance". Additional trees will be taken down well beyond this central
am glad that the many people who were expressing their solidarity with this
environmental cause are not here to hear and see the machines, and to see
the destruction first hand. This action by SaskPower, sanctioned by the
NDP government of Saskatchewan, represents a totally needless destruction
of continuous forest. SaskPower's own environmental data, fully known by
the NDP politicians, had declared this route option as the MOST
ENVIRONMENTALLY DAMAGING of all the options considered. It is also the
MOST EXPENSIVE of all the options. Why then was it selected? The answer
provided by many who consider the situation is that SaskPower felt the need
to make an example of the people living along this section, demonstrating
what happens to those who resist the plans of the Regina-based engineers
and managers of this corporation. By seeing this, others should be deterred
from ever again daring to resist the corporate power abuse of this public
the east-west portion of King's Loop, the fallen aspen trees are laid out.
As I walked through here on February 28, 2003, the entire area reminded
me of a battlefield after a great battle, with the fallen soldiers laid
out for mass burial. These fallen trees were the living symbols of the 2000
persons adopting trees, signs of their presence in the face of SaskPower
bulldozers and SaskPower disregard for environment and for people. Although
the symbols may have fallen, the resolve of citizens to stop needless destruction
of environment has been strengthened.
view taken on a dark and cloudy February day. The dark sky was a fitting
setting for the evil act that SaskPower had perpetrated here. This image
represents only the first stage of their corridor clearing. Spruce trees
and additional trees beyond the area shown are still slated for destruction
over the next few days. I will add updated images to this file.
companion "King" seems to have caught the sense of what has happened.
He moved from fallen tree to fallen tree as if in an effort to understand
what has taken place here along his familiar run. I admit that we cannot
"understand" what has happened any better than he does. How does
a decent mind understand the mind behind a criminal act?
companion "King's" demeanor tells it all. This impressive king
of the forest fell to the self-serving and power-corrupted attitude of SaskPower
officials. They have brought a curse on this land, but the most frightening
aspect is that they represent only part of what has been wrong for so long
with the attitudes of those who hold power on our behalf. They see that
power as their playing field rather
than as a sacred trust which they hold for the present and for the future.
photo was pointed to the East. In the far background one catches a glimpse
of the already opened land about 3 KM beyond through which the line could
have been routed. Had this been done, the project would have damaged much
less environment, been much cheaper, and not come within 500 meters of anyone's
home! Such a rational and decent approach was not within the moral competence
of SaskPower officials.
photo illustrates what has happened to a portion of the
trail system that I had developed. SaskPower refuses to even consider
any compensation for the work that I had done to create the system, and
whose entire southern portion they have destroyed. They did not mind using
my work to save them some money when the line was surveyed, using my open
trails, but a decent compensation consideration is totally beyond them.
Row. This image is taken looking to the East at the completion of the forest
destruction. Already the poles are bing dropped along the corridor. The
Gulf War term "Collateral Damage" takes on another level of meaning
when we see it applied to this war against the environment being committed
by SaskPower. Here most of the "collateral damage" will be more
hidden. The habitat of thousands of forest dwellers has been destroyed.
The soil has been altered forever. Ground water patterns are disrupted.
Invansive plant and animal species will penetrate and contaminate the forest
flora and fauna well into the adjacent forest areas. Winds will whip down
a new wind tunnel and destroy even more trees that currently escaped the
chainsaw.Tthe list goes on and on. For this "successful war" the
generals at SaskPower in Regina will likely get promotions and fat bonus
cheques for "a job well done!" Yes, they did their job well. But
we know it was work that should not have been done in this manner, and they
stand condemned by nature and by God.
ancient ones stand in witness to the needless destruction that happened
to their neighbours and companions of the past 100 years. This is part
of the boreal forestorest the way God / Creator made it, and which we
are charged to care for.
the way God / Creator made it
are the replacement "trees" which give such delight to the engineers
and officials at SaskPower in Regina. I am sure that when Mr. Bernie Bolen
and the other members of the SaskPower PA 8 Rebuild Project Team view this
image, their hearts will swell with pride. This is "beauty" in
the eyes of those whose true vision has been taken away by the corrupting
influence of power and control and personal pride.
image should be on the banner that SaskPower displayed at all our "public
consultation meetings". On the banner were the words; "Environment
is first with SaskPower", or words to that effect. What the banner
did not spell out was what kind of environment they were putting first.
We have found out, as has every visitor to this part of the province who
drives north along Highway No. 2.
"Truely Beautiful Tree" in the eyes of SaskPower's Regina Engineers.
If they can make a Boreal Forest look like bare grasslands, they believe
they have achieved something truly great and praiseworthy. Do you think
that the Creator of that boreal forest would agree? Do you think that if
God had wanted this part of our land to look like barren ground he would
have allowed any life to return to the land after the glaciers melted over
10,000 years ago?