Tues. Jan 20 Town Hall on Daylighting the Sawmill River

January 20 at 6:30pm to 8:30pm at Mic Mac AAC, 192 Prince Albert Road, Dartmouth, Nova Scotia B2Y 1M8

“In the coming years, the extent of land between Sullivan’s Pond and the Halifax Harbour will experience significant changes.
Water infrastructure projects and intersection upgrades are planned for this area in Dartmouth, as well as restoration works on historical canal features. In the midst of these projects, our community has the unique opportunity to bring water and nature back to the heart of the city by daylighting the historic Sawmill River. The purpose of this Public Information Meeting is to allow interested residents to gain an understanding of the future possibilities. The meeting is hosted by Dartmouth – Cole Harbour Member of Parliament Robert Chisholm in collaboration with the Ecology Action Centre and the Sackville Rivers Association. For more information or if you have accessibility accommodation needs, please email Robert.Chisholm.c1@parl.gc.ca or call 902-462-6453.” To learn more about daylighting the Sawmill River, visit: https://www.ecologyaction.ca/SaveSawMillRiver

ATV use near The Bluff Trail

ATV tracks on The Bluff Trail on the  west side of Pot lake on the first loop, Jan 10, 2015
ATV tracks on The Bluff Trail on the west side of Pot lake on the first loop, Jan 10, 2015
On Jan 10, 2015, one of our members noted some ATV use on The Bluff Trail on the west side of Pot Lake on the first loop. It likely entered via the Highway 103 area. Use of motorized vehicles is prohibited on The Bluff Trail and in the in the larger Five Bridge Lakes Protected Wilderness Area under the Wilderness Protection Act of Nova Scotia.

Nova Scotia Government Pressured to Adopt Doelle-Lahey Regulatory Framework

More than 400 attended rally at Lord Nelson in support of Doelle Lahey report which would strengthen controls of open net salmon farming. Photo by Matt Miller
More than 400 attended rally at Lord Nelson in support of Doelle Lahey report which would strengthen controls of open net salmon farming. Photo by Matt Miller
“Nearly two years after banding together, 36 member groups of the coalition against open pen finfish aquaculture in Nova Scotia were back today at the Lord Nelson Hotel in Halifax. The groups, which range from ‘Big Lobster’ interests to sport fishing interests, to tiny coastal community networks, braved the abnormally frigid Atlantic temperatures to celebrate the recommendations put forward by the Doelle-Lahey regulatory framework.” See the Halifax Media Coop report

Thurs Jan 8 at Noon: Panel on Aquaculture Regulations

WRWEO received a Special Invitation: Please make plans to attend : A Press Conference and Rally in support of the Final Report of the Doelle–Lahey Independent Panel on Aquaculture Regulations. It is a ground breaking Report which calls for major regulatory reform of the aquaculture industry in Nova Scotia from top to bottom . It is good and must be supported and implemented in its totality without delay .
Where : The Lord Nelson Hotel
When : 12 noon – Thursday, January 8th – one hour in duration Continue reading “Thurs Jan 8 at Noon: Panel on Aquaculture Regulations”

Five Bridges Trust Co-Chairs address Landfill Issue

In Dec. 8th letter, Co-chairs Harry Ward and Peter Lund request “Regional Council pay close attention to potential impacts that raising the height of the existing disposal cells could have on the protected wilderness area, particularly from:Blowing litter, odours, visibility and nuisance noise (particularly from trucks backing up).”

They also note: “Potential impacts to Nine Mile River is also an important concern, particularly considering increased development pressures within the headwater watershed lands of the Nine Mile River north of HWY 103, including residential subdivisions of Kingswood and Haliburton subdivisions who have aging septic systems, Lakeside Industrial Park, subdivisions in Timberlea, Halifax Water sewage treatment plant (situated adjacent Nine Mile River) and two pumping stations (one situated next to the Nine Mile River and the other situated next to Governor Lake which flows into the Nine Mile River) and the new Brunello Estates golf course and associated residential community and commercial development.”

View Letter

Letter to HRM re: Increasing the height of the Landfill

UPDATE Dec 9, 2014: Otter Lake landfill modified changes approved by Halifax council, leaving the future of The Bluff Wilderness Hiking Trail in limbo. Not only will the landfill be more visible and beyond 2024, but it will be visible over a larger span of The Bluff Trail. It would no longer be valid to call The Bluff Trail, in its present form, a “wilderness trail” & “wilderness” is its raison d’être.

A decision to increase the height of the Otter lake Landfill could be made at the HRM Regional Council Committee of the Whole meeting on Tuesday Dec. 9. The relevant documents have been available for only a few days (see post below this one.) WRWEO Co-chairs, Past Chair, and the Chair of the Trails Committee have written a letter to Mayor Mike Savage and Councillors noting that in spite of our previous documentation of the visibility of the landfill from sections of The Bluff Trail, these viewplanes have apparently NOT been considered in the recommendations of staff to Regional Council… Please read Our Letter and earlier documents for more info. (Unfortunately, the relevant documents were made available too late for us (the Board) to appeal to WRWEO members and other Bluff Trail users for support of our position, but that opportunity may still avail after the Tuesday meeting.)

Otter Lake Landfill viewed from Loop 3 of The Bluff Wilderness Hiking Trail
Otter Lake Landfill viewed from Loop 3 of The Bluff Wilderness Hiking Trail

Otter Lake Landfill – Future to be determined Tuesday, Dec 9th, 2014

Tuesday, Dec 9th, 2014 at 10am: Committee of the Whole – City Hall
Please attend if you are able.
Integrated Solid Waste Resource Management Strategy Review – Consultations with Halifax Waste Resource Society Board of Directors with respect to Recommendations #7, 8 and 9 – Continuation from January 14, 2014 and June 24, 2014

HRM Staff Supplementary Report: http://www.halifax.ca/council/agendasc/documents/141209cow3.pdf
Which includes the Halifax Waste Resource Society, Position Paper as Attachment #1

Please read and send your comments to HRM Regional Council, ASAP, via: clerks@halifax.ca

– John Cascadden (FBWHT)

Birds At Risk

Birds at Risk“Birds At Risk is a half hour documentary that travels to birding hotspots around Nova Scotia to examine the health of our bird populations. The film introduces a passionate group of birdwatchers, biologists and volunteers that are playing an important role in the scientific research that is critical to keeping bird species alive.” See the Broadcast Premiere on CBC Television’s Land & Sea on Sunday, December 7, 2014 at 12 Noon. View Trailer

Jellification of our lakes

jelly planktonStudies by Jon Smol and colleagues at Queens University on lakes in Nova Scotia and Ontario reveal a very worrisome trend – a change in the phytoplankton species associated with declining calcium levels. “Without calcium entering the lakes in run-off, some crustaceans at the base of the aquatic food chain, which make their exoskeletons from the mineral, are at a disadvantage, and they’re being displaced by species that have an jelly-like coating. These jelly-organisms are inedible to many predators, and disruptive to the lakes’ ecological balance.” (CBC report). Acid rain combined with inherently poorly buffered soils, especially in SW Nova Scotia, is the major driver; clearcutting is also cited as a factor. View references on our Water Quality Page.