Protecting Delta's ecosystem

Protecting Delta's ecosystem

Today, I spoke in the legislature about the importance of protecting Delta's irreplaceable ecosytem and finding balance between economic development and the environment.

You can find both the transcript and video below. 

 

PROTECTION OF SOUTH DELTA ECOSYSTEM AND MIGRATORY HABITAT

V. Huntington: Members have heard me say many times that South Delta is an international icon of immense significance. South Delta is not just green fields over which industrial developers, the province and the Port of Vancouver salivate. It is a critical and irreplaceable ecosystem that is the most important on the west coast of North America. 

I've tried repeatedly to focus attention on this fact, and I ask the question: at what point did we, as human beings, decide we don't have to protect environments that are crucial to life?

Delta has among the most stunning and important biodiversity in this country. It boasts a natural abundance that depends on the rhythms of the Fraser River, on nutrient-rich mudflats, on the eelgrass beds of Roberts Bank, on the ebbs and flows of tidal currents and on our superb agricultural lands. 

How is it possible we don't know about Canada's greatest wildlife migration? Why don't we know that millions of migratory birds, sometimes entire species, are dependent on Delta's ecological integrity for their survival? 

Don't we care that the day is coming when the thronging multitudes of scoters, grebes, scaup, winged pintail, goldeneye, mergansers, bufflehead, coots, widgeon, mallards, sandpipers, dowitchers, dunlins will disappear, that the swans and snow geese and blue heron will be gone? Why do humans go down this sad road? Why do we turn our backs on the ecological heritage given to us by God? Why do we so often fail to share our environment with other creatures on this planet? 

I will say one last time: balancing our economy and our environment means saving South Delta. Delta is the balance. It is all that is left.