letters

Letter: Hire arborist, boost fines for cutting protected trees

I suggest fines of $10,000 per damaged or killed tree

Hire arborist, boost fines for cutting protected trees

Dear mayor and councillors:

I heard council is accepting input regarding updates to our greatly respected, timely tree-protection bylaw.

I now urge council to install far heavier fines for ignorant folks cutting public and private trees without a city permit.

I suggest fines of $10,000 per damaged or killed tree beyond a girth prescribed by other like-minded communities. Perhaps a girth of 12-14 inches.

That diameter bespeaks a healthy tree affording residents, wildlife and visitors shade and habitat, respectively.

I also urge the city to hire a full-time certified arborist to manage, catalogue, advise about, and care for Duncan’s precious trees — especially our beloved heritage trees such as those sturdy oaks in Charles Hoey Park.

Beside hefty fines for cutting or willfully damaging Duncan’s trees, I also urge council to legally seek jail time for scofflaws affecting our trees by poisoning, ‘banding’, or affecting vital root systems.

These ideas may seem extreme but we are in extreme times with climate change, sprawl, infrastructure upgrades, pests, and careless residents harming our threatened trees.

Far too many trees have already been lost in Duncan.

These points must be communicated to educate local residents and developers about how seriously council views tree preservation and protection.

I applaud council’s demand for planting two trees — or more — for each tree being fallen if it was dead, dangerous or dying.

I urge council’s arborist to ensure trees planted are attractive, hearty native species with better survival rates than some non-native ornamentals wrongly planted in the past.

Planting such native species will allow our cash-strapped council to duck costly tree-removal bills.

Perhaps council can start an adopt-a-tree program, or tree-naming program to create brand identity for our trees and Duncan’s proactive green plans.

Duncan’s tough stand will hopefully attract more tourists, wildlife, and green development. That could further foster a crucial arts-driven pedestrian ambience — with a vigorous program of bulbs, bushes, banners, benches and buskers — in Totem Town.

I also hope council’s tree-conscious wisdom serves as a model for our other local governments lacking Duncan’s vision to institute legal tree protection while more trees were tragically cut.

Peter W. Rusland

North Cowichan

Letters

Just Posted

Black Press file photo
RCMP seek suspect in Vancouver Island-wide crime spree

Crimes stretched from Deep Bay to Qualicum, Ladysmith, Chemainus and Youbou

North Cowichan’s committee of the whole have rejected staff’s recommendation to limit the use of fireworks to Halloween. (File photo)
North Cowichan rejects limiting fireworks to Halloween

Municipality decides staff recommendation would be unpopular

Things are looking up for Vancouver Island as zero COVID-19 cases have been reported for the first time since October. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Island records zero new COVID-19 cases for the first time since October

For the first time since October, the province is reporting zero new… Continue reading

CVRD Area E director Alison Nicholson, right, hiked two hours to Waterfall Camp at the Fairy Creek watershed along with Comox town councillor Nicole Minion and Comox Valley Regional District director Daniel Arbour to meet with old-growth logging activists on Monday, June 7. (Submitted)
Cowichan Valley regional director visits Fairy Creek protest camps

‘They clearly communicated that they are committed to what they are doing’

A small pod of Pacific white-sided dolphins pass by close to shore in Campbell River June 16, 2021. Still capture from video courtesy of Kimberly Hart
VIDEO: Dolphin sunset captured from Vancouver Island shore

Spectacular setting for view of travelling pod of Pacific white-sided dolphins

Karl and Stephanie Ann Johanson were thrilled to spot a pair of Sandhill Cranes in the Panama Flats this month, an unusual appearance for such birds. (Photo by Stephanie Ann Johanson)
WATCH: Sandhill cranes an unusual, joyful sight in South Island parkland

These birds don’t often touch down on their way between northern B.C. and Mexico

(V.I. Trail/Google Maps)
Now 90% complete, Vancouver Island trail forges new funding parnership

Victoria Foundation takes on Vancouver Island Trail Association; fund valued at $40,000

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Police are asking for public assistance in locating Anthony Graham who has been charged with the murders of Kamloops brothers Carlo and Erick Fryer. (RCMP photo)
2 charged, suspect at large in killings of B.C. brothers linked to gang activity: RCMP

Kamloops brothers Erick and Carlo Fryer were found deceased in May on a remote Okanagan road

Albert Health Minister Tyler Shandro and Alberta Premier Jason Kenney unveil an opening sign after speaking about the Open for Summer Plan and next steps in the COVID-19 vaccine rollout, in Edmonton, Friday, June 18, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
Alberta 1st province in Canada to lift all COVID-19 public health restrictions

70.2% of eligible citizens 12 and older in the province have received a dose of the vaccine

Fraser Health registered nurse Ramn Manan draws a dose of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine into a syringe at a walk-up vaccination clinic at Bear Creek Park, in Surrey, B.C., on Monday, May 17, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
‘Honour our fathers’ with COVID-19 vaccine protection, B.C. urges

109 new cases Friday, 75 per cent of 12 and up immunized

Freighters have becomd abundant in the Trincomali Channel on the east side of Thetis Island.
Nanaimo ponders taking on waste from nearby anchored freighters

Vancouver-based Tymac petitioning the Regional District of Nanaimo to accept waste at its landfill

(Paul Henderson/ Chilliwack Progress)
Trutch Avenue in Chilliwack to be renamed to remove racist taint

New name to have Indigenous significance as Chilliwack takes new step toward reconciliation

Most Read