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Wee Chip Cowichan offers alternatives to backyard burning

Business notes

When Doug Kitchen-Turlock ended up with large burn piles on his property after a windstorm, he decided he would rather have them chipped than add to air pollution by burning them.

That idea caught on with many who are concerned with local air quality, as well as those who just wanted someone to come on their properties and deal with their woody waste, and Kitchen-Turlock formed Wee Chip Cowichan.

Kitchen-Turlock is also an electrician, and his business offers chipping, mulching and trimming services for residential and small businesses, as well as electrical contractor services.

Backyard burning is banned completely in a number of local municipalities, and North Cowichan is currently reviewing its policies.

Moves have been made by various groups in the last few years for all areas of the Cowichan Valley to implement a full ban on backyard burning, largely due to health concerns.

“We provide an alternative to backyard burning, and business has really taken off as word is getting out there about what we do,” Kitchen-Turlock said.

For more information, call 250-715-7365 or visit

Third floor being added in major Best Western reno

The Best Western Cowichan Valley Inn is undergoing major renovations.

A third floor is currently being added to the building which will see the number of hotel rooms increase by 22, for a total of 64.

An elevator will also be added.

Front desk manager Elizabeth Newman said most of the rest of the hotel is also to be renovated and upgraded, inside and out.

She said the only part of the facility that is planned to remain the same once the renovations are completed is the pub.

While the hotel will be fully open during the renovations, which are expected to be completed in March, the outdoor pool will be closed.

“The owners decided to make the hotel bigger and better,” Newman said.

“Duncan really needs it.”

Will there be another Cowichan winner this year ?

The EcoStar Awards organization is now accepting applications from businesses, organizations and individuals on Vancouver Island for the 2017 awards.

The EcoStar Awards recognize outstanding environmental achievements and leadership from people and/or groups that are green and contributing to sustainability in the region.

There are 17 categories of awards; including Eco-Preneur of the Year, Greenest Office, Greenest Restaurant, Waste Management and Community Leadership.

Last year, Duncan’s Blue Roots Farm won the Eco-Preneur of the Year Award.

The deadline for nominations and applications is Sept. 15 at 4 p.m.

Information about the awards program and how to apply can be found at

The awards ceremony will take place at the Inn at Laurel Point in Victoria on Nov 16.


Robert Barron

About the Author: Robert Barron

Since 2016, I've had had the pleasure of working with our dedicated staff and community in the Cowichan Valley.
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