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by mjamero » Tue Nov 08, 2022 3:38 pm

Hi folks, could those in the know kindly point me in the right direction?I have chosen the Spit removal as a presentation topic for a BCIT sustainability class I am presently taking. I am trying to source legitimate and factual information surrounding the project; feasibility studies, environmental assessments, project goals, stakeholder identification and goals, proposals, and so on. Thank you for pointing me in the right direction.
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by raquo » Tue Nov 08, 2022 5:25 pm

SRWS was contractually obligated to do a feasibility study of spit realignment. They breached their funding contract and did not do this. DFO privately acknowledges this, but publicly refutes the violation. Either way, they don't care.

There was no environmental assessment because they exempted themselves from it.

There was no feasibility study of any alternative options, only studies on waves and sediment deposition of removal. There was a small workshop to come up with alternatives to spit removal to show "community engagement", then none of the proposals were explored further, despite SRWS contractual obligation to do so.

Details and references here: https://spitgate.notion.site/2-Spit-Rea ... ed07b5bbf9

If you want to sift through ~700 pages of DFO ATIP response referenced above and still come out disappointed (most interesting things including cost estimates of spit removal were illegally redacted), PM me your email, I can send you a copy.

You can see what little studies have actually been done here: https://www.squamishwatershed.com/commu ... ation.html
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by drummermom » Tue Nov 08, 2022 6:19 pm

Crime of the fucking century.
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by mjamero » Wed Nov 09, 2022 12:42 pm

raquo wrote:SRWS was contractually obligated to do a feasibility study of spit realignment. They breached their funding contract and did not do this. DFO privately acknowledges this, but publicly refutes the violation. Either way, they don't care.

There was no environmental assessment because they exempted themselves from it.

There was no feasibility study of any alternative options, only studies on waves and sediment deposition of removal. There was a small workshop to come up with alternatives to spit removal to show "community engagement", then none of the proposals were explored further, despite SRWS contractual obligation to do so.

Details and references here: https://spitgate.notion.site/2-Spit-Rea ... ed07b5bbf9

If you want to sift through ~700 pages of DFO ATIP response referenced above and still come out disappointed (most interesting things including cost estimates of spit removal were illegally redacted), PM me your email, I can send you a copy.

You can see what little studies have actually been done here: https://www.squamishwatershed.com/commu ... ation.html


Thanks for the info and direction raquo. This is a great start.

1. The first you link provided (part 1 and part 2) provides a good overview of the issue. What/who is the source (who is the author) of that DFO analysis? What is that website? I want to minimize any bias (or at the very least point it out) on both sides of the issue. Context is important. I also want to be sure to cite this author/website to give credit where it is due.

2. Yes, I would be interested in the obtaining the original DFO document. I don't anticipate going through all 700 pages, however key points (or lack there of) could be useful.

So, the DFO 01961, and the SRWS report pdf's on the SRWS site are the only official public documents related to the spit removal project?

Maybe a silly question but, what started this entire path that resulted in the spit removal to begin with? Where and when can it ultimately be traced back to?
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by drummermom » Wed Nov 09, 2022 1:59 pm

Edith Tobe is the start of everything. She’s been the president of the estuary committee for 20 years. First tried to close us out on the basis of saving the herring. When they came back by themselves she jumped on the salmon train. The woman is pure evil.
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by raquo » Wed Nov 09, 2022 4:29 pm

That Notion mini-website I linked to is my own research. Not looking for or wanting credit for myself. You can cite my username if you are required to cite an author, or claim the findings as your own, I don't care (it's mostly just extracts from other documents anyway).

I also have some FOIPP documents from the District of Squamish, but as with DFO docs you'll need to give me your email for me to send them over.

Squamish Windsports Society had a website http://www.realignnotremove.ca/ with a timeline of events related to spit removal. Apparently it's down now, nit might be not intentional, so you might want to ask them to bring it back up.

For more public info, you can search Squamish Chief for "spit removal" and "spit realignment". The articles basically regurgitate SRWS claims without any analysis or verification, so don't take everything there at face value.

https://www.google.com/search?q=spit+re ... hchief.com

https://www.google.com/search?q=spit+re ... hchief.com

What ended up as spit removal started as the idea to realign the spit while preserving land access to kiteboarders. Government provided funding for that, and they got more private funding from environmental orgs on the heels of that. Here is John Sturdy MLA making the announcement: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=68rBcrKqIW0

Long story short, SRWS sat on their hands for a few years, using up most of that funding to build expensive culverts that are utterly and predictably ineffective (they won't publish any good data, but there are some bits and pieces in the DFO response). Now that their funding was about to expire, and they don't have enough money left to do actual spit realignment, they officially decided to remove the spit instead. Given everything I've researched, I believe they never intended to actually realign the spit, and that removal was always the plan from day one, but no one will admit to it, and of course they're professional enough to not put it in writing (or redact, or triple delete, how would we even know).

As to what started this, you can read SRWS's official claims and be satisfied with them if you so choose. You can also look at the motives of everyone involved, and judge for yourself if everyone involved has the environment in mind, or something else (opinion ahead):

* Federal, provincial, and municipal governments wanted a quick and easy environmental and reconciliation PR stunt. They got their headlines and photo ops when the funding was announced.

* Squamish nation wanted to assert their power, and they got that.

* Edith Tobe (head of SRWS) runs a local environmental consultancy (EB Tobe Enterprises) so of course it's good for her to get more more connections to governments, more power over environmental decisions in the region, and being in the news for all that is just good marketing. All the real estate developers who want easy environmental approvals in Squamish will happily pay such a persona to speed up their development applications.

* Whistler Excavations Ltd. are just happy to take money for doing all the construction / destruction work

* The media just regurgitate statements by various interested parties without doing anything to verify those claims, putting factual claims right next to hogwash as if both deserve the same attention.

This whole thing was framed by SRWS and the media as a salmon-vs-windsports issue, whereas the original funding agreement was specifically about making the two coexist. And when SRWS completely wasted all opportunities to accomplish that, instead of taking responsibility for their failure, they made it the windsports community's problem.

Did I mention that because this issue concerns use of public land in BC, it's automatically a reconciliation issue, and you're labelled a racist and a bigot if you disagree with whatever the local first nation wants? Did I mention the um, privately communicated consequences for non-compliance? I applaud your effort in getting to the bottom of this, but good luck trying to get anyone to speak on the record about such things. (I will not respond to PMs about this)
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by LeopardSkin » Mon Dec 26, 2022 3:05 pm

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by drummermom » Mon Dec 26, 2022 4:50 pm

Wow !
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by Cathulu » Mon Dec 26, 2022 8:00 pm

Crazy!

So I checked July 2022 and the highest tide was about 4.9m. I think this video was taken around 5.05m tide level?

Then i got interested and looked deeper. The highest predictable tide is 5.16m for Squamish with average meteorological conditions - i.e. the Astronomical tide with the Sun, moon and earth in alignment.

Not sure the elevation around the containers but they are barely above the water level.

Obviously these are not average meteorological conditions, the rain and snow melt was crazy flooding everything. That video was insane! But I am guessing this is not the first time it had been insane...

Hopefully no long term impact to our beloved Squamish sailing area. The sand banks no doubt will see changes and maybe the buig stump will be gone?
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by Ryan » Mon Feb 13, 2023 11:52 pm

In case anyone did not see this on the other thread, I'll keep all the spit news here.

https://www.squamishchief.com/local-new ... th-6535338
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