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NEWS: Castle River watershed area to be clear-cut in June

The Lethbridge Herald reports, “Despite ongoing protests, Alberta’s resources minister (Mel Knight) continues to defend clear-cut logging (880 hectares) in the Castle River recreation area. …A Cochrane forestry company, Spray Lakes Sawmills, has been given authority to begin the cutting this June. Forest areas expected to be levelled this year include trees adjacent to such popular camping areas as Lynx Creek, Castle Falls and Beaver Mines Lake. …(The minister says), ‘That’s maybe 2,000 to 3,000 loads of logs’…”

“Watershed issues related to logging have already been studied, the minister said, and neither the quality nor quantity of water in the Castle valley would be adversely affected.” But the Prairie Post notes, “In Edmonton, the New Democrats’ environment critic called for protection of the Castle region. ‘The Castle Special Management Area already established in the region has suffered severe ecological trauma,’ Rachel Notley said. But it’s been ‘carved up’ by forestry and oil and gas development, she said, and its water resource will be compromised. ‘Albertans throughout the region are facing water shortages,’ she said.”

“Public opinion locally is overwhelmingly against logging in the Castle River area west of Pincher Creek… More than 85 per cent of Lethbridge and Coaldale residents said they oppose clear-cut logging (according to a) survey conducted by the Citizen Society Research Lab… In addition, 87 per cent of those surveyed said they support the creation of a wildland park in the area.”

For more on ‘Stop Castle Logging’, please go to http://www.albertafoothillsnetwork.org/stop-castle-logging and http://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=pu.192045437483676#!/photo.php?fbid=203743486313871&set=pu.192045437483676&theater.