Tag Archives: Cortes Island

Is Strathcona Regional District Prepared For A Major Emergency?

The ECOreport asks the local Protective Services Coordinator about floods, fires and earthquakes, Is Strathcona Regional District Prepared For A Major Emergency?

By Roy L Hales

In light of the wildfire situation in British Columbia’s interior, it seemed like a good time for an update on our area’s emergency preparedness. So I asked Shaun Koopman, the district’s Protective Services Coordinator, “Is Strathcona Regional District prepared for a major emergency?”

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Whale Tales

The ECOreport asks about whale tales and other wildlife sightings on the Cortes-Quadra ferry 

By Roy L Hales

In light of the wildfire situation in the interior of our province, it seemed like a good time for an update on the Strathcona Regional District’s emergency preparedness. Only there were three humpback whales along the route, as I crossed over to Quadra Island to meet with the district’s Protective Services Coordinator. This isn’t the first time I’ve seen whales along this route, but they were still whales in the area when I returned four hours later. So I asked I asked Jessica Towers, who works on this ferry, if she had any whale tales.

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Cortes Island’s One Stop Shopping Experience

The ECOreport looks at Squirrel Cove General Store, Cortes Island’s One Stop Shopping Experience

By Roy L Hales

In an era of increasing specialization, some remote locations are developing in the opposite direction. In addition to the services you might expect, Squirrel Cove’s General store is also a gas station, post office, liquor store, gift shop, hardware outlet, building supply store, shellfish interpretive centre and it hosts one of the island’s finest take-out food providers. It has become  Cortes Island’s one stop shopping experience.

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Responses To Cortes Island’s Algae Bloom Problem

The ECOreport interviews the author of a FOCI report about responses to Cortes Island’s algae bloom problem

By Roy L Hales

The global phenomenon of algae blooms has reached British Columbia. The BC Northern Health issued an advisory for Prince George area last summer. Severe outbreaks have been reported at St. Mary and Cusheon Lakes on Saltspring Island, and Village Bay Lake on Quadra Island. The Friends of Cortes Island (FOCI) recently published a monitoring report. I recently interviewed the author, Rex Weyler, about responses to Cortes Island’s algae bloom problem.

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Fun with Firewood

The ECOreport has a little fun with firewood

By Roy L Hales

Firewood is a vital source of heat energy on Cortes Island. Some think of it as our secret sin. There may be more environmentally conscious people here than any other part of British Columbia, per capita, yet we use a more carbon producing energy source than coal. This is the season when we cut and stack it for the coming winter. It’s also time to have fun with firewood.

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Cortes Island’s Emergency Preparedness & Awareness Weekend

The ECOreport looks at Cortes Island’s Emergency Preparedness & Awareness Weekend

By Roy L Hales

Cortes Island Volunteer Fire Captain Eli McKenty received the page at 8 a.m.  There was a fire at the Recycling Center on Squirrel Cove Road. As the island’s fire chief was not available, McKenty was in charge. He had, as yet, little indication of what lay ahead. Never-the-less, while he was waiting for his crew to assemble, McKenty received word that one of the recycling centre’s staff called. The  flammable shed storage is burning and there is sounds of explosions. The staff member called 911 and was fighting the fire. McKenty alerted the ambulance and, as a precaution alerted an elite provincial fire fighting unit that it might be needed. Arriving on the scene some 40 minutes later, he discovered the fire had already spread to the trees. If this were an actual event, tomorrow’s newspaper headlines would probably say something like “Cortes Island Fire Leads To Mass Evacuation“. In reality, this table talk was one of the components of Cortes Island’s Emergency Preparedness and & Awareness Weekend.

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What Should You Do When Encountering Downed Power Lines?

The ECOreport asks two Bc Hydro employees, What Should You Do When Encountering Downed Power Lines?

By Roy L Hales

Ever wondered what to do in an emergency situation? Cortes Island’s Emergency Preparedness and Awareness Fair was an excellent venue  to ask the experts.  At the BC Hydro booth, I asked, Hannah Wilson and Katherine Macdonald, “What should you do when encountering a downed power line?”

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How Often Does Cortes Island Need Emergency Services?

The ECOreport asks Cortes Island’s Fire Chief, How often does Cortes Island need emergency services?

By Roy L Hales

Though the population doubles or triples during the summer months, there are less than a thousand people on Cortes throughout the year. The RCMP come from off island, but we have a medical clinic, ambulance and a relatively large volunteer fire department (with firehalls at Mansons Landing and Whaletown). So, at the Cortes Island Preparedness and Awareness weekend, I asked the local Fire Chief how often does Cortes Island need emergency services?

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British Columbia’s Fight For Sustainable Logging

The ECOreport interviews the producer of two short films about British Columbia’s fight for sustainable logging

By Roy L Hales

When Island Timberlands arrived in 2012, they found Cortes island residents waiting behind a blockade. The Vancouver Observer sent a young film maker to cover the story, but Daniel Pierce found more than just another clash between a logging company and local environmentalists. He is still documenting British Columbia’s fight for sustainable logging.
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Lund Is Soul Candy

The ECOreport tours British Columbia’s Sunshine coast, Part one: Lund Is Soul Candy

By Roy L Hales

The village of Lund is about 20 miles from my home on Cortes Island. There are vantage points on Cortes, from which you can actually see Savary Island. Though only a short distance across the waters, it takes a day and three ferry trips to drive there. The experience is delightful. Lund is soul candy.
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