Editor, The Record:
It is suggested that local persons who are in favour of developing the Mission waterfront watch the devastation shown on the news of communities and homes being destroyed by rising waters.
It is painful to watch the citizens working furiously around the clock to try and pile sandbags along water courses, and our heart and sympathy go out to them, but other feelings are directed at local governments which allowed development in those areas without any thought to the extremes that can happen at flood plain.
Therefore, Mission residents have to resoundly say no to development along the Fraser River, and such grounds near, or at flood plain, should be left for important ecosystems that need the marshes, bogs and trees along rivers’ edges to survive and to provide important side-effects for humans.
The often-repeated justification to improve the economy or to provide jobs, etc. is an unrealistic way out for officials who cater to large development corporations. In the final analysis, after the new homes, condos, etc. have been built at flood plain and close to river and lake edges, the corporations have made their money and leave the area, with no really effective dikes as exist in some countries. When disaster inevitably arrives, it is the home owner and smaller local businesses that carry the consequences of being destroyed by raging waters.
For local officials to try and justify development at flood plain in any way, is now more dangerous and unacceptable than ever, since they have also allowed enormous areas at higher elevations to be clear-cut of trees and other vegetation, which formerly held back some of the rain water at their roots and released it slowly to surrounding rivers and lakes.