When I moved to British Columbia, I was thrilled to find wild, rushing rivers, pristine bays, and mountain valleys teeming with wildlife. I took comfort and pride in knowing that most BC residents share the same hope that our children and our children’s children will also benefit from these amazing economic, environmental, and spiritual resources. 

As I got to know the amazing places around us, however, I began to realize something important – if we don’t build the future we want, someone else will build a future we don’t want. Consider some of the changes the BC Government is now considering

  • BC’s parks and protected areas have been opened up for development of pipelines, transmission lines and roads (Bill 4). 
  • Ninety percent of the Agricultural Land Reserve could be weakened to allow natural gas processing (Bill 24)
  • Major timber companies could get exclusive control over vast areas of public lands.
  • Ninety-nine percent of natural gas facilities and all future ski resorts could be exempt from environmental review. 

In the face of these wide-reaching changes to our environment and the rules that protect it, who will work to protect our wilderness, our farmland, our parks, and our communities?

We will.

For twenty years, West Kootenay EcoSociety has been at the forefront of protecting our environment and building sustainable communities. Because of the support of people like you, people like me and my staff can work on behalf of our communities, our wilderness, and our future. For example:

  • We co-hosted a rally and forum on the Agricultural Land Reserve, and we’re asking local government to step up protection for farm land.
  • We participated in a province-wide petition drive to protect BC Parks, and we’re helping the public to access parks through our trail building in West Arm Provincial Park and education programs at Kokanee Creek Visitor Centre.
  • Our conservation committee is working on an Old Growth Management Audit to see if the system is working to protect the most important habitat.
  • And of course, we’re suing the BC Government to overturn the unlawful Jumbo municipality.

All of these programs and accomplishments are made possible by our dedicated members, volunteers, and staff. Our members rely on us to represent them and act on their behalf to create a sustainable and resilient future. Our projects address the entire web of interrelated issues most critical to our time – economy, energy, housing, transportation, food, emissions, wildlife, education, and so on. The math is simple: the more members we have, the more we can accomplish.

As a member, you’ll place yourself at the forefront of wide variety of initiatives to protect our local environment and build truly sustainable communities for our children and grandchildren. You’ll also be kept abreast of all of the latest environmental news.

And because we’re not content to rest on our laurels, we’ll soon be launching our most ambitious and comprehensive initiative ever. Based on the principle of intelligent collaboration, we’re building a broad coalition from all sectors of society to lead a coordinated effort to address the interrelated and overlapping challenges of our time. 

As I reflect on the challenges we face and the work we’re doing, I’m both deeply concerned and excited. 

It has become increasingly clear that the only way to create the sustainable future we hardly dare to dream of is for many more people to step up and support this vital work. At the same time, I’m deeply encouraged by our ever-increasing ability to take that support and effectively turn it into the change we need.

That’s why I’m encouraging you to join West Kootenay EcoSociety as an EcoLegacy Member at $20 dollars or more per month – a level that shows you mean business when it comes to your children’s future. Signing up only takes a minute – just fill out the enclosed form.  And if $20 per month is more than you can invest in our sustainable future, rest assured that we can put any level of contribution to very good use.

Each day as I work to protect our environment and build sustainable communities, I am reminded how blessed I am to do this work on behalf of our ecosystem and our grandchildren. It’s an honour and a privilege and I hope you’ll join me.


David Reid, Executive Director