Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - June 14, 1973, Lethbridge, Alberta
14 LETHBRIDGE HERAID Thurtday, 14, 1973 Retain natural environment ECA panel hears more of the same By DAVID BLY Herald Staff Writer The natural environment and resources of the eastern slopes of the Kocky Moun- tains belong to all Albertans and should be preserved and conserved for present and fu- ture generations. That was the substance of most briefs submitted at the public hearing in Lethbridge by the Alberta Environ m e n t Conservation Authority. The hearing, heid in the Memorial Centre, was to gather public opinion on land use and resource devel- opment cf the eastern slopes, particularly in the Oldman River drainage basin. The hearing continued to- day with the presentation of briefs outlining proposed commercial developments. As in a similar session held Monday and Tuesday in Cole- man, strong opposition to commercial and industrial development viithin the area was expressed. "I protest the selling, leas- ing or granting the use of aiy cf the Crown lands sit- uated along the eastern slopes." slated Robert E. Arlt cf the Claresholm Fish and Game Association. Al- though others presenting briefs held slightly more moderate views, most agreed that the preservation of the aica in its natural state is of prime importance. The importance of the east- err, slopes as a watershed area v, as emphasized by Glen L. Steed. Lethbridge, region hydrologist for the provincial environment de- partment, Mr. S.ced pointed out that the eastern slopes are the source of water for many municipalities down stream and that before any activity is undertaken which would modify the watershed, all as- pects should be studied. He recommended that "all uses be considered in the context cf their effects on the water- shed as a primary use for downstream water supply." Larry Beres of the South- ern Alberta Recreation As- sociation recommsnded the multiple use concept as a management principle of the area. He said, however, the land should not be subjected to every conceivable use, but that the primary use be con- sidered first, then other com- patible uses. If serious con- flicts arise, he said, only the top priority use should be allowed. Mr. Beres opposed the sell- ing of Alberta's natural re- source reserves "simply to provide for quantity of life at the expense of quality of life." Brian Kregorsky, a Uni- versity of Calgary graduate student and a former Leth- bridge resident, presented a proposal for the extension of the Great Divide Trail Sys- tem from Banff National Park to Waterton Lakes Na- tional Park. The 150-mile trail could be designed to avoid conflict with mining and other uses of eastern slope lands, he said. Mr. Kregorsky explained that the trail would be closed to all vehicular traffic and would link up to the Con- tinental Divide Trail System in the U.S. at Waterton. "This is not only a viable project, but a necessary he told the EGA. He ex- plained it would alleviate pressures on the national parks, providing the opportu- nity for Albertans and vis- itors to enjoy the environ- ment of the mountainous back country. Elmer Kure of the Alberta Fish and Game Association told the ECA his association recommends compatible types of recreation for the area. He said his group op- poses the processing of nat- ural gas within the area and recommended that the raw gas be piped to locations out- side the eastern slope area for processing. Mr. Kure said the associa- tion also opposes the im- pounding of water for "dilu- tion of sewage" of down- stream communities and op- poses the flooding of high quality recreation land. Gene Scully, a life mem- ber of the Lethbridge Fish and Game Association and the Alberta Fish and Game Association, protested further commercial development of the area, and said strip min- ing in an alpine area is more harmful than beneficial. It is impossible to reclaim such areas to their original state, he said. Lawrence Smith, director of the Oldman River Region- al Planning- Commission, ex- plained the commission's role in deveolpment of the east- ern slopes. "The demands for a va- riety of land uses must be accommodated in a manner that will minimize conflict and maximize the benefits for all residents, not only of the study area, but of the re- gion and the Mr. Smith said. One of the problems con- fronted, he pointed out, is that "a mutlltude of public agencies" is affected by any one of the land uses. "It is crucial that the de- cisions of these various agen- cies be co-ordinated and made to harmonize with one "the planning com- mission director said. Dr. J. F. Dormaar of the Lethbridge Centre of the Ar- cheological Society of Alber- ta said historical and arche- ological sites and artifacts in the Oldman River Basin are non-renewable resources. It is not enough merely to recover artifacts, M. Dor- maar said. The archeologist has to be able to study the artifacts in their context to obtain the most information possible. Sparse Attendance was sparse at the first day of the Al- berta Environment Conser- vation Authority hearings in Lethbridge at the Yates centre Wednesday. Author- ity members above, left to right, P. J. Dowling, W. R. Trcst and Julian Kinisky. Mining officials defend industry Mining industry sjp-okesmen defended their activities in the eastern slopes of the Rocky Mountains as econom- ically essential before the En- vironmental Conservation Au- thority ot Wednesday's pub- lic hearing. David Lane of Scurry-Rain- bow Oil Ltd., Donald Living- stone of CanPac Minerals Ltd. and E. J. Panchysyn of Manalta Coal Ltd. described the extent of coal deposits in the upper Oldman River Bas- in and explaned how their respective companies plan to extract coal from this area. The area is near the fork of the Oldman and Livingston Rivers, two of the three riv- ers in the province rates as number one trout fisheries. The area is also abundant in ell: as the Livingston Gap is a major migration route bs- v.een summer and winter ranges. All three companies propos- ed open cast or strip mining for extraction of the coal. Mr. Livingstone's presenta- tion was a reptition of his presentation at Coleman Mon- day. A look at the hearings Elaborate reunion costly By JIM MAYBIE Herald Staff Writer To a stranger it seemed like some sort of a reunion at the Yates Memorial Cen- tre Wednesday. In the morning there was a great flow of comment along the lines of: "So, we meet again. Where have I seen you before? So, you're on the hearings trail too." It was evident from the comments that a lot of peo- ple who attended the public hearings Monday and Tues- day in Coleman were also attending hearings in Lethbridge "Similar" seems to be the appropriate word because there was so much repeti- tion in the briefs presented to the Environment Conser- vation Authority, the body sponsoring the hearings. Several of the briefs pre- sented in the Yates were so "similar" to what the va- rious agencies said in Cole- man, that any differences were noi noticed by the av- erage person. The Coleman hearing was termed outstanding by mem- bers of the authority, draw- ing a large crowd of inter- ested persons. The Lethbridge hearing, by comparison, was rather lack-luster, drawing only 75 persons, several of whom had attended the Coleman hearings. Some people dozed in the Yates as speakers droned on boypnd their 15-minute time limit. One man read a news- paper. Others read briefs. Members of the authority chatted about different things and checked the board to see who would be presenting the next brief. Occasionally a speaker would say something that would draw enthusiastic ap- plause from one or two per- sons. There was always more applause participation when fee speaker finished his address. Thousands of dollars worth of electronic equip- ment occupied a fair part of the Yates stage. The bureau of public af- fairs had worth of video-taping equipment to obtain a picture and voice record of the entire proceed- ings. One camera focused on the speaker and another on members of the authority. Two men were required to run the equipment. A private firm was retain- ed by the authority to audio tape the entire proceedings. The operator had more than worth of taping equip- ment set up. The video-tapes will be provided to cable television stations, free of charge, for rerunning. Besides pro- viding a visual record they will also be used for future programming and presenta- tions to the public. The audio tapes will be later transcribed, similar to Hansard. From the tran- script, a summary of the hearings will be developed leading eventually to a re- port and recommendations to the provincial cabinet. Other electronic gadgetry included a slide projector, an overhead projector and a small gadget which inform- ed the speaker re had one minute of time left to speak (a green light 1 and a red light to let him know the 15 minutes were up. For the most part, that lit- tle gadget was ignored by the speakers, some of whom droned on for an hour. The hearings should not be taken lightly they are costing provincial taxpayers thousands of dollars. The three member En- vironment Conservation Au- thority has a government support staff of a dozen per- sons attending the hearings. Besides the government em- ployees there are others re- tained by the authority for various jobs. The support staff sets up displays, handles registra- tions for the hearings, arranges for coffee during breaks, determines where the liquor store is to pick up a bottle of Scotch for a mem- ber of the authority and a host of other jobs. In Lethbridge the staff is billeted at the Holiday Inn, the most expensive hotel in the city. The authority has rented 14 private rooms. The hearings which start- ed in Coleman Monday move on to Calgary and Canmore next week, Rocky Mountain House, Red Deer, Hinton, Edmonton, Grande Cache and wind up at Grande Prai- rie July 13. Some persons suggested the hearings and related costs could be reduced if repetition of briefs were not allowed. One person suggest- ed repetition only serves to give the various companies and organizations a public sounding board at the pub- lic's expense. Mr. Panchysyn said Man- slta Coal plans to carry out geological surveys during the next two years but has no definite plans beyond that stage. "If future government pol- icy permits mining in area, this company would carry out large-scale explor- ation with a view to bringing the property into production along with other potential he said. Mr. Lane said Seurry-Rain- bcw's coal exploration pro- gram indicates coal reserves of more than 350 million tons in two areas. This coal, he said, can be extracted by strip mining. Mr. Lane defended strip mining for its economy, safe- ty and simplicity. He" added that nearly 90 per cent of the coal can be recovered through strip mining, while only about 40 per cent is recovered through other methods. He told the ECA that strip mining sites can be restored to near their former contour and in some cases be made to provide additional benefits such as recreational lakes, fishing and artificial water storage, in sddtion to tree farms and grassy slopes, in time producing more forage than ever. "Some of the most beautiful areas in the world are the re- sults Of tree planting in work- cd-over Mr. Lane said. Julian Kinisky of the ECA asked Mr. Lane to name one cf thes'3 areas. After some hesitation, Mr. Lane said Grassy Mountain is one. Mr. Lane cited the econom- ics of mining the coal, point- ing to the demand for metal- lurgical coal in steel produc- tion. He said now is the best time for developing the coal for production within the next 20 years "before technological changes make it obsolete in steel production.'' "Every immediate eftort should be made to foster our fledgling coking coaT industry into a strong and hsaithy re- source industry for the cpti- mum benefits of Albart'a ana he concluded Mr. Kinisky asked Mr. Lane if there any assur- ance that the two prime trout streams would b3 undisturbed by the mining otseratins Mr. Lane jeplied that perhaps the economic benefits of trout fishing and the coal mining should be compared. "How much are thosa streams worth over the next Mr. Kinisky asked, "How can you place a value on something like lilr. Lane responded Phillip J. Dowling of the ECA then commented that the mining of Ib; coal is a commercial operation, and that the company has a re- sponsibility to its slockholders to show a profit. Ho said that tne mining, however, would be for the benefit ot the com- pany, its stockholders and the foreign market, and not nec- essarily to all Albai-lans. "Could you tell us and this audier.ce why the hell we're doing he asked. 'City should stay in CFMM despite too much socializing' By ANDY OGLE Herald Staff Writer Lethbridge should stay in the Canadian Federation of Mayohs and Municipaities and, what's more, should send two delegates to the next annual meeting, says Aid. Bill Kergan Aid- Kergan. who was the city's lone representative at the annual gathering of city fathers in Charl o ttetown, P.E.I, last week agreed how- ever that there was a little too much socializing. "When you go that far at the taxpayers' expense, you should said Aid. Ker- gan, addin? that he attended every session. Toronto mayor David Crombie walked out of the meeting in mid session terming it merely "an annu- al social while Van-, couver mayor Art Phillips also left early, and one Cal- gary alderman sniped away through the press at another Calgary alderman's lack of attendance at the working sessions. Some Lethbridge alderman also voiced their lack of faith in the relevance of the orga- nization when the question of sending a delegation was OFY groups aivait funds Bank credit has been ar- ranged to tide Over three Op- portunities For Youth pro- jects in the city still waiting for their federal cheques. The three grants for summer op- eration rotal Scott MacKinnon, OFY pro- ject officer for Southern Al- berta, met this week with bank officials in Lethbridge to arrange credit for the three projects on their still- empty accounts Under OFY regulations, one lump sum is sent to each project to be deposited in a registered account. It is then available for the gradual of salary cheques 10 project members, at and a week. In operation now since May 14. Consumer Investiga- tion and Aid and the South- west Truckin' Company re- ceived assurances of credits each. A credit of has been extended to Handicrafts In- corporated. This project be- gan May 28 to be staffed by 11 young people. The OFY project officer told The Herald the fault for the delay rested with the pro- ject members themselves. Air. MacKinnon said that contracts had been returned to Lethbridge projects two and three times from his Cal- gary office in the attempt to get correct signatures or per- tinent details on them. The federal monev for the 32 students in the three pro- jects is expected to arrive in Lethbridge within two weeks. discussed at council earlier in the year. Aid. Kergan. however, said he thought the conference was worthwhile because the topics discussed escalat- ing land costs, finance, hous- ing, transportation, urban growth were relevant to Lethbridge. "We have the same prob- lems as the bigger cities, though to a lesser he said. Aid. Kergan felt two repre- sentatives of the city should go to the next conference be- cause more than one point of view would be obtained and working sessions held simul- taneously could be attended. "That's not suggesting the whole council should he said terming the size of some delegations red Deer sent five representatives for ex- Aid. Kergan said the main issue at the conference was the cities' demands for a slice of the income tax pie, a topic to be picked up again at the next "tri level" con- ference between munic.pal- ities, the provinces and the federal government in Octo- ber. There was a feeling that cities just can't go any fur- ther with the property tax base and must get a fair share of income tax reven- ues with no strings attached, he said. Aid. Bill Kergan Astrologer mystifies planners A slightly bemused Mu- nicipal Plan ning Commis- sion granted what's prob- ably the city's first home occupation licence for as- trology Wednesday. The planning body, used to hearing applications for such prosaic occupations as construction contracting, up- holstering, teaching ceram- ics or music, and the like, listened mystified as Clyde Bostic, of Ste. 30 1415 20th St. N. said the stars in- fluence every aspect of life. The tall, bearded native of Barbados told the commis- sion members drawing up personal horoscope charts for people who answered his newspaper ads is his pri- mary source of income. A chart costs and predictions Mr. Bostic said. He added that he's studied astrology since he was a child and has lectured on the subject on television, at the university and community college and is currently busy writing a magazine ar- ticle on the subject Lottery taken from Games plan The provincial govern- ment's decision to pass up a Western Canada lottery will force the Southern Alberta Winter Games Society to seek other fund-raising methods. Dean Cooper, chairman of the society, said Wednesday the organization had hoped to benefit from Alberta's par- ticipation "in the lottery- The decision not to partici- pate, however, means the society "will have to develop some of our own proposals" for raising money for the 1975 Canada Whiter Games, Mr. Cooper said. The society had tried un- successfully to meet with Horst Schmid, minister of cul- ture, youth and recreation, to discuss the group's support for the lottery, he said. Other groups in the prov- ince had informed Mr. Schmid that sufficient funds for recreational programs could be raised at the local level without participating in the lottery with B.C., Saskat- chewan and Manitoba. Mr. Cooper said he expects a meeting to be arranged this month between soci- ety officials and Mr. Schmid to discuss alternative fund- raising approaches. Whoop-Up events set A conglomeration of day- long events is being staged Saturday at Kinsmen Whoop- Up Country in Indian Battle Park. The day's festivities will begin with the 10 a.m. visit of Wayne and Shuster to Fort Whoop-Up and the 11 a.m. performance of the Appa- icosa Horse Club. The Taber W. R. Meyers Marching Band will be fea- tured at 1 p.m. and about 3 p.m. the Sunshine Players will present a show and pro- gram using the fort as a backdrop. There is no charge to enter the Whoop-Up grounds, how- ever regular rates for guided mine and train rides and the Whoop-Up wagon ex- press will be in effect. Wayne and Shuster will be in the city officiating at the opening of a service station.