Canada’s Natural Resources Sector

“In Canada, each level of government has powers to protect the environment. This shared nature of environmental jurisdiction makes close cooperation among the federal, provincial, territorial and Aboriginal governments important to Canada’s environmental well-being.” (CEPA)

Canada is doing it right when it comes to protecting nature for our future. (check out Resource Works for information)

It is impossible to stand on top of a mountain, under wide open blue skies, looking down upon lush green treetops, marvelling at a meandering turquoise river and not think about protecting this for perpetuity.

I travelled, with this image imprinted on my brain forever, and everywhere I went, every place I sought I looked for the beauty. There is so much beauty around us in this world, we know it and we protect it with all our might, informed or not.

There are many countries around the world that is not doing it right, there is no accountability for them.

In my research trips to understand what environmental protection really means,

I have seen the raping of fertile land.

Forests hacksawed to the ground, limbs dragged through ancient rain forests.

Have you ever seen giant machinery churning up the ground in pursuit of gold and diamonds?

I have waded through mud and blood in the aftermath of gold dredges owned by greedy gold diggers.

Have you ever seen water hoses sucking up the rivers, washing the land away to sift out a few dregs of gold dust?

I have waded across the muddy marshland of a once-fertile land, vicious mosquitos swarmed up from still puddles that used to be rivers.

There were ancient and exotic creatures lost and confused, dying before my very eyes.

Have you witnessed the human rights abuse of people in the industry?

I have heard the wails of young girls and women in the nights, seen little girls kicked out because they were too old for ‘the game’, and little boys swimming in chemical-ridden swamps.

There were no regulations.

No laws, no giveback, no rules, no consequences, only murder, mayhem and destruction.

Back home in Canada I have lived in  Provinces rich with natural resources, regulated to the hilt.

We are in a unique position to make no old mistakes, to fund social programs, to plan for the future, to preserve our rain forests, at home and in far-off lands.

The  blanket effect affects us all , so should we not come together to save the world?

Norway is doing it and I know this because I have visited Iwokrama Research Centre, which is funded and protected by Norway’s oil-rich money.

Norway is living a green life like we all should someday.

Can BC Natural Resources do it too? Can we get to a greener future by being logical today?

I look at the alternative right now and I have to say… I have lived the hunter-gatherer life and it ain’t fun, it’s hard work and time consuming too.

I have lived close to landfills and it is disgusting, vultures gather, rodents thrive, decay and rot prevails.

I have seen windmills standing, like an unfinished masterpiece, as still as the dead in empty fields,

And I have experienced life in a place powered by solar energy, when it rained I inhaled the smell of kerosene, I ate it in every meal.

Have you seen farms where enclosed pigs live in their own filth?

I know we can get to a greener future, I believe that with all my heart.

But I also know we cannot deny quality of life to the lower and middle classes of today, so the rich can have a beautiful tomorrow.

I propose we make our natural resources continue to work for us in a sustainable and ethical manner.

I propose we use some of that royalties to start building the infrastructure.

We need to be self-sustaining in the future.

I propose we work together as citizens of Vancouver and British Columbia.

I propose we start now.

Add your bit here, ideas, movements, solutions?


Samantha McLeod

Vancouver based food and travel writer.