A number of qathet region organizations* have come together to address the issues that arise from the recent closure of the Catalyst Paper Tis’kwat pulp and paper mill in Powell River. The issues are grouped under the three main objectives adopted by the Coalition:
- To ensure that Paper Excellence (owners of the mill) will fulfill their legal obligation to remediate the site. There are multiple outstanding issues in the mill area and surrounding communities.
- To ensure that the community benefits from the hydroelectric power generated at the site. A subsidiary of Brookfield Renewable wants to sell the electricity to the US with no benefit flowing to the community or whomever assumes ownership of the mill site.
- To support the Tla’amin Nation in the restoration of wild fish habitats that were damaged or destroyed by the building of the dams. The Powell River salmon run was once second only to the Fraser River for significance on the BC coast.
The Coalition has recently released a brochure that they wish to distribute as widely as possible. The brochure provides more detail about the group objectives, lists actions that we all can take to help and describes the makeup of the Coalition.
The group recently published an opinion piece in the Peak and on Oct 4 group member John Chan presented to the Powell River committee of the whole meeting. The current council accepted John’s presentation and approved a recommendation to send the issue to the new city council for discussion early in its mandate.
*The After the Mill Coalition seeks to be a non-partisan group representing all qathet residents. The NIPR EDA is therefore not a member organization. We are however in agreement with the Coalition mandate and will work to support the Coalition objectives.