| Mar 20, 2008

Letters - March 20, 2008

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Letters - March 20, 2008 LettersMarch 20

Re:Pan Fish, Fred Gardner

Re: Pan Fish, Joanne Pickett

North Frontenac Township Commitment, Edith Beaulieu

Open Letter to Dalton McGuinty,Wanda Recoskie

Thanks to Those Who Cared For Us this Winter, Rev. Art Turnbull

New Landowners Association, Edward Kennedy

Nuclear Versus Solar,Carl Winterburn

Nuclear Energy: Not Safe, Clean, or Affordable,Susan McLenaghan

Re: Letter From Mayor Ron Maguire,John Kittle

Re: Pan Fish

I am writing in response to the article published in March 13, 2008 edition of the Frontenac News -(Local Resort Owner Raises Alarm Over Pan Fish Limits).

The Ministry of Natural Resources carefully monitors fish stocks all over the province and if they feel that a limit is necessary, I believe them. We must remember the health of an eco-system is dependant on the management as a whole, and that pan fish are only one piece to the puzzle. Mr. Spirala and other resort operators have to wake up to the new paradigm of Resource Management in a modern age.

This is not the 40s or 50s. It is about time we put some limits on our fisheries and stop allowing the pillage of our natural resources by local and foreign anglers alike. You would think Mr. Spirala would be more ecologically and environmentally conscious about the effects of the old no limit fishing regulations and wouldn't be so short-sighted. Responsible management of the fish stocks secures the resource for future generations, which in turn secures a future for the operation of his resort. Or maybe Mr. Spirala is more concerned with short-term gain and when Lake Kennebec has no more fish, he plans on selling and moving on to another lake.

Fred Gardner, Friend of Lake Kennebec

Re: Pan Fish

Before you let Cezar Spirala get the last word on the issue of limits on sunfish, please get some facts from the ministry and give them some press also.

I remember as a little kid the hordes of sunfish we fed at the end of our dock - big ones too, with fillets way bigger than the size of a potato chip. We caught them as food fish too but we certainly didn't need to harvest vast quantities even to feed our family of 9.

I never see those big sunfish anymore and the number of little ones has declined considerably over the years. Our lake association has (regrettably) held several sunfish derbies over past years but the notion of hundreds of tourists hauling away freezers full of sunfish each and every year is appalling. As we all (should) know, sunfish play an important role in the aquatic food chain and unchecked fishing of any species cannot be a good thing for the sustainability of our fish stocks.

I think we can probably blame the cost of fuel and the low American dollar above all else for the decline in the number of American tourists in recent years.

Perhaps Mr. Spirala could direct some of his energy toward the movement against uranium mining in Sharbot Lake. A uranium mine down the road - now THAT would be bad for tourism.

Joanne Pickett

North Frontenac Township's Commitment?

As President of the Ompah Community Centre Organization I believe I speak for most of our local citizens in congratulating Mr. Ladouceur on last week's letter to the editor. It reflected the exact sentiments of most of the people in our community with respect to the lack of township funding for the fire hall, its equipment and the community centre.

At a recent township council budget meeting we were told that the Ompah community would be expected to raise a portion of the money needed to construct a new fire hall. Does the council not appreciate that this community has already donated the whole complex that exists as the Ompah fire hall and community centre? That includes the land, the buildings, all fire trucks, the air ambulance pad, and the majority of the equipment. Over 30 years that amounts to much more than $100,000. This money came from organizations such as the Volunteer Fire Auxiliary, the Skidoo Club, the Community Centre Committee, the Volunteer Firemen, local small businesses, personal donations and memoriams for deceased relatives and friends. The township got it all for free.

The township's demand that we raise more money for a new fire hall is insulting to those who have already worked so hard and given so much. Who would support new fund raising initiatives besides these very same people? It is time that council faces the fact that the free ride on Ompah's generosity is over. Everyone who benefits from the services of our fire department should pay their share through taxes. The funding burden should not rest on a few of us tired volunteers.

Mr. Ladouceur was right. Our community has shown their support and commitment. Instead of demanding more and more, it would be nice if the mayor and councilors could give us something back.

Edith Beaulieu

Open letter to Dalton McGuinty

Well, Mr. McGuinty - it turns out that we Southeastern Ontarians are initially right and you are initially wrong. Now that we have the support of the mayors of Toronto, Kingston, Ottawa, along with the mayors of 10 communities around us in Lanark Highlands, it is obvious that there should never be uranium exploration or uranium mining where thousands of people live.

So it is therefore quite ironic that you have legislated non-smoking in vehicles with children to protect them from second-hand smoke, yet you are more than willing to let the air they breathe, the water they drink and the lands they enjoy all around them to be decimated with radio-active pollution.

I am appalled at your lack of insight to the dangers of uranium mining and exploration after all the information that has been sent to you – showing you that 80% gets exported and we only keep 20% for Canada - and you want to let our lands be destroyed for more uranium? I will tell you what - why don't you contact the Deline Village of Widows, the Natives on the Serpent River in Elliot Lake, the Navajo peoples of Arizona, and while you're at it - fly over the 10 lakes filled in around Elliot Lake with 175 million tons of radio-active waste which is leaching into Lake Huron via the Serpent River, and check out northern Saskatchewan. Perhaps you also are too blindsided by the rich mining corporations. You are not doing a very good job for us Southeastern Ontarians by ensuring we would continue to live in a healthy environment as you said in your letter to me.

Well, we will not be brainwashed by false statements of safety bullcrap provided by uranium mining companies, nor geologists who say that uranium rock is safe no matter what is done to it. It is only safe if it remains undisturbed. Instead we will rely on and believe those who are suffering and the true photos of Robert Del Tridici that clearly show one of the 10 lakes in Elliot Lake with a 30-foot-high wall of radio-active waste. We also choose to believe well renowned, well respected world-wide scientists who have studied for 20–30 years the dangerous elements of decaying left over uranium rock, namely Dr. Gordon Edwards, Dr. Syd Brownstein and Mr. Jim Harding.

You have eroded our faith in the democratic, political, and justice systems, which has definitely proven that we have no rights to protect our lands or our environment and the people who live in the area where the devastation will take place have NO SAY! What part of "We don't want uranium exploration or uranium mines in Southeastern Ontario, Lanark Highlands, or Frontenac Ecosensitive area" do you not understand? Please tell your Minister of Tourism to stop putting out pamphlets advertising Land o' Lakes Tourist area in Lanark Highlands. Because it will be open pit mining, there will be NO tourist area left.

Wanda Recoskie

Thanks to those Who Cared For Us This Winter

This winter has been particularly difficult. One snowstorm after another with spells of thawing followed by freezing made roads and pathways treacherous.

During this winter a few people in each of our communities worked hard to keep the streets and sidewalks open. In particular I would like to acknowledge the hard work of Mr. Percy Snider and his employees who did snow removal in the Sydenham area. Within a day after each storm the roads were widened as the men worked around the clock. Within 48 hours of even the heaviest snowfalls the sidewalks were passable. Mr. Snider and his crew are appreciated.

Others also need to be acknowledged. The men and women who collect the garbage and recycle material never missed a pickup all winter in my area. The highway snow clearance was done by dedicated people who kept the roads safe. Our emergency response medical and fire employees and volunteers never missed a call. The police were present throughout the county ensuring our security.

In theory, winter has come to a close and spring is here. We can be grateful that the people and equipment are at the ready just in case Mother Nature does not know that it is time to stop snowing.

Thanks to good workers and neighbours, we have come through a tough winter. Easter this year is a good time to express appreciation to those who cared for us all winter.

(The Rev.)Art Turnbull

New Landowners' Association

I notice with suspicion many local sessions about “clean water” and water sources, and especially at town council regular meetings.

A lot was heard last provincial election about the Clean Water Act and the ramifications of this on rural property owners, specifically the intent to “meter” rural wells and have yearly inspections of both them and septic systems. While the liberal candidates across the province shrugged this off as something that would never happen, these provisions of that “ACT” are still integral to its content, and can be used at any time. The Sydenham water fiasco was a typical example of impositionally decreed tyranny/financial hardship imposed on rural town dwellers, an assault on freedoms, and bureaucratic meddling run amok.

Like the “sword of Damocles”, the provisions of this and other “Acts” concocted by Queen’s Park lie threateningly over the heads of rural dwellers, landowners and country vacation property owners. Land appropriations continue, while urban spread increases across the land. The increase in urban land area from 1971 to 2001 was 4300 square kilometers, an area the size of Prince Edward Island. Bureaucrats, those typical meddlers and enemies of freedom through the imposition of more and more rules on all of us, waste upwards of $250,000,000 yearly in tax dollars spent on lodging at resorts. Figures for 2003/2004 for number of rooms that our tax dollars paid for in Cancun was 800, in Barbados 636, in San Jose 523, and in Jamaica, 167. So while bureaucrats enforce more and more laws, we have to not only pay for their enforcement by bureaucrats, but also fund vacations for these types.

These are but concerns that few are thinking about, being more focused on personal matters that take their time and efforts. While we have elected a liberal government in Ontario, things in rural Ontario have continued to decline but Landowners Associations have sprung up and prospered, buoyed by their message and resulting actions of defending freedoms, and rural rights, while opposing meddling bureaucracies and government injustices.

While there are roughly 17 Landowners associations across the face of Ontario, we have not had any in this riding of Frontenac, Lennox and Addington. That is about to change, as a preliminary meeting held March 8 at the Newburgh Community Hall brought a round table meeting of several grassroots people together to discuss plans for the formation of the new Frontenac, Lennox and Addington Landowners Association.

The dream will become reality with the first meeting slated for the Kaladar Community Center, already booked, for a meeting in early April. This organization will be affiliated with the Ontario Landowners Association, bringing the power, numbers, expertise, and organized strength of 17 other established Landowner organizations across Ontario into our sphere of influence and allowing rural people the ability in organized numbers to protect our rights, effect change, and oppose bureaucratic meddling in our affairs.

An advertisement will be run in this paper in the next few weeks announcing the time, and location, scheduled speakers, and a listed email and telephone number to contact for info.

Governments are, by and large, urban institutions of organized hypocrisies, with “ignorance on autopilot” when it comes to rural affairs. Our goal is to change that and judging by the many successes of our sister/brother Landowners organizations, change that we will.

Edward Kennedy, Harrowsmith

Nuclear Versus Solar

The pathetic race (40 years ago) to be best with our nuclear program ended with Ontario Hydro somewhere around $40 billion in debt. Nuclear is very high tech, any mistakes or break downs can be deadly and very expensive. The programs result in a lot of pollution at and around the mines, refineries and Chalk River Research facility.

To even suggest three more reactors in or near Toronto is unconscionable! Accidents and miscalculations will happen. Look for reference on the internet for happenings around mine sites, refineries, and Chalk River problems. Toronto’s citizens don’t deserve this!

When are terrorists going to select a reactor for their next disruption of our society?

Hydro One estimates residents use 40% of their household electric bill heating water! I was recently told that 40% of all electricity produced went to residential use. It follows then that 16% of all energy produced goes to heating water in Ontario. This is a great way to go green.

Recently Chrysler laid off a large number of people. There are others doing the same thing. More and more people can get only part-time jobs. We are in a down-turn. Building refineries and reactors employs relatively few people and takes decades. Making and installing solar and wind generation takes a few weeks giving us almost instant alternate green power.

I’d recommend solar voltaics as the extra energy reaped - can all be reaped. e.g. charging batteries for emergencies. e.g. electric cars. It is my understanding that Europe (especially Germany and Holland) are way ahead of us.

Solar and wind are pure green and low tech to build and install. They have a life expectancy of 40 some years. They are easy to repair. Solar can start easing our energy problem now. A green win-win situation.

The same money that would be spent on nuclear reactors would pay 50% of putting a solar water heater on every residence in Ontario. And set up a long-term industry making, installing and maintaining the installations, just like an appliance repairman.

Subsidize solar or wind 50% and you get double the economic effect.

Jobs versus big money squandered on nuclear.

- Carl Winterburn

Nuclear Energy – Not Safe, Clean, or Affordable

That Bob Lovelace, one of the leaders of a peaceful, principled resistance to uranium prospecting/ exploration in the Mississippi watershed remains incarcerated and subject to heavy fines should strike fear in the heart of every ordinary Canadian. If nothing else, the refusal of the Ontario government to respond to legitimate concerns voiced by many is indicative of the level of power and influence the nuclear industry holds in the halls of government in this country.

The nuclear industry (of which uranium exploration/ mining is a part) promotes itself as clean and safe…a solution to climate change. However, consider this:

There is no known way to effectively sequester and monitor radioactive mine tailings for the thousands of years they remain active. Bear in mind that radioactivity is undetectable to the human senses and compromises all life on our planet.There is no proven and safe long-term storage solution for the spent nuclear fuel that is accumulating around the world. Did you know that governments/ industry are now proposing that producers of uranium "rent" the yellowcake to consuming nations and then "reclaim" it for storage? In addition to mountains of radioactive mine tailings, how would you feel about a nuclear fuel storage facility in the headwaters of the Mississippi?Canada sold Candu reactors to India, Pakistan, China, South Korea. India and Pakistan then used the technology and spent fuel to develop nuclear weaponry technology…a small example of Canada's complicity in the proliferation of nuclear weapons and the development of an Asian arms race.Uranium from Canadian mines finds its way into the military-industrial complex in the United States through the use of depleted uranium in modern weaponry. The US illegal war in Iraq is leaving Iraqi civilians with a vicious legacy of nuclear contamination that will endure for generations…ditto Afghanistan.Nuclear energy is inefficient, expensive and subject to massive subsidization by various levels of government that makes it appear economically viable. Witness the recent $300 million dollar federal government payment to Atomic Energy of Canada Limited (AECL) in the 2008 budget, another $500 million for waste management, another $100 million over the last three years and $100 million annually for R&D. That debt retirement charge on your Ontario Hydro bill? Ask Dalton McGuinty how much in total (including refurbishment) the Pickering generating station has cost Ontario taxpayers. The billions of tax dollars that goes to support the nuclear energy system in this country is money that is consequently unavailable for conservation, energy efficiency improvements and the development of clean, safe, inexpensive renewables (solar, wind, tidal etc).

Governments are very much into "accountability" these days. How about a little (make that a lot) on the nuclear energy system file?

- Susan McLenaghan

Re: Letter from Mayor Ron Maguire,

I wish to comment on Mr. Maguire’s position on uranium mining affecting North Frontenac’s future. In his letter enclosed with the recent tax bill, he states that this issue is “properly the responsibilities of the Ontario and Canadian governments” and that North Frontenac will “remain guided by their decisions and actions”. This seems to imply that council has no role to play in challenging the province’s mining decisions on behalf of North Frontenac taxpayers.

This must be Mr. Maguire’s personal opinion because last fall a majority of North Frontenac Council voted to petition the province for a moratorium against uranium exploitation in eastern Ontario.

North Frontenac Council has added its voice to 12 other eastern Ontario councils, plus scores of organizations and thousands of people demanding that the province stop uranium exploitation in eastern Ontario. Perhaps Mr. Maguire believes that due democratic process and public opinion are not important.

I hereby request that Mr. Maguire set the record straight by mailing out a retraction of his misleading statements related to uranium mining and to properly inform taxpayers that North Frontenac Council has petitioned the province for a moratorium against uranium exploration and mining in eastern Ontario.

John Kittle

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