Monday, March 26, 2007


Geraldine Kenny,
Sierra Quadra
March 23/07

Re. Your request for membership renewal

In the past several months, I have sent letters to the Sierra Club critical of their campaigns and their approach. I have told them that they have failed to provide any leadership on the issue of balancing the human footprint with the rest of nature. I have asked for answers. None of the recipients have bothered to reply. Like the NDP, the Sierra Club appears to want passive members who will pay their dues and make donations to save the habitats of their poster animal of the month.
What I require is a mission statement. Something like: “ Sierra Quadra recognizes the limited context for human expansion on earth and that any further population growth will displace wildlife and be self-defeating for Canada’s human inhabitants.” Because long-term environmental protection alongside human population growth is physically impossible.
Rampant human population growth in Canada is concentrated in those ecoregions where most of our country’s rare and endangered species of wildlife live. Ten species of mammals not found elsewhere in Canada are threatened by growth in the Fraser Delta, which is now covered by 20% in buildings, excluding greenhouses and covered farms. Wildlife and farms in the Okanagan Valley are also meeting their holocaust to this malignant cancer. The Sierra Club, along with the David Suzuki Foundation and every other environmental organization save one, simply will not acknowledge the role that population growth plays in environmental degradation. They will not address root causes but only the symptoms. They will not face up to the need for a Population Policy in Canada. Nationally and locally. The Fraser Basin Study of 1997 made a grim assessment of the environmental damage done to biodiversity and concluded that a population policy was needed to secure environmental protection across the country. In May of 2001 the Population Institute of Canada presented a parliamentary committee with a similar report.
Until the Sierra Club supports this effort, I will deploy my money and energy to those organizations that will effectively pursue the goal of population stabilization. They are, the Population Institute of Canada, and the Sea Sheppard Conservation Society headed by Captain Paul Watson. Watson was the man Sierra Club Canada president Elizabeth May tried to malign and misrepresent when he attempted to return Sierra USA to its former commitment to that policy.
I leave you with two questions and one quote. The first question is, if we are having trouble saving wolves and cougars with an island population of 3,500 people, how do you think these animals would fare if we tripled our numbers? Secondly, Saltspring Island has 27,000 residents---do they have any wolves and cougars to save? People will not tolerate cougars and wolves in their neighbourhoods. People must be kept where they belong. Environmentalist Steve Hoecker:

“It does no good to preach that we should not destroy habitat or that we should reserve more open space. When push comes to shove, we are going to clear more land to build houses, plant more acres to crops, build roads to carry an increased traffic load, create more jobs as well as a host of other habitat-destroying activities in order to provide for an ever-increasing number of people. Each year we convert more wildlands and open space to human-dominated landscapes to provide for human needs. It can be no other way as long as our populations continue to grow. We continue to attack the symptoms, not the underlying cause.” (from “When More is Less”, Hunting Magazine, Dec.1996)

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