Channel Ridge: Friendly, Not Funky – So Far

December 18, 2016
A friend of mine, who shall remain nameless, recently complained about someone else complaining about too many trees being cut down in northern BC.
“Look at it here. Does it look like there is a shortage of trees?,” she proclaimed.

Well, it you compare the trees in northern BC — or anywhere else, for that matter — to what the early explorers like Cortez and Thompson saw when they came to our western coasts, there is no doubt a shortage of trees compared to what were growing at that time

A woman, who I was once giving a psychic reading, asked what climate change is going to do to our world. I asked closed my eyes, relayed the question to my Spirit guides, and immediately saw a vision fir trees in my Third or mind’s eye. “Wherever there are trees, they will save human beings,” I said.

To be an environmentalist or any activist, one has to open up her or his mind. Where there are trees, the ecosystem around those trees will stay grounded during the climate change shift. Where there are no trees, the earth will literally break up and disintegrate. This is why Africans, and their allies, who realize this are planting trees in parts of that continent. They are trying to make up for those people in past decades and centuries who looked around themselves and said, “lots of trees, no problem in cutting and cutting and cutting them down…”

Have I made my point? Of course, we will continue to cut down trees but we need to protest so that there is a limitation to the numbers being killed and we need to advocate reforestation. I think we have to do this as often as two or three environmentalists gather together.

This is why developments like Channel Ridge on Salt Spring Island need to be protested. We need to make sure that we keep on top of this so that the cutting of trees never gets out of hand.

Tears came to my eyes when I saw the slaughter of Douglas firs on Salt Spring Island during the Texada debacle. I am sure just as they would if I witnessed an elephant being slaughter in Africa. I suspect my friend’s eyes would not remain dry either if she witnessed this as well.

Here is a related article:

Salt Spring Village Views
Friday, March 19, 2004
Channel Ridge: Friendly, Not Funky – So Far
by Tanya Lester

Take a walk on Channel Ridge Trails of Canvasback Place, northeast of Vesuvius, and there is that sae feeling Salt Spring people experience when they pass over any of the numerous island trails — a hush, almost audible in its profundity. Being somehow at one with the beauty of natural green space is a sacred experience that is so real, its seems surreal in a world increasingly polluted and urbanized.

The existence of these trails, set aside by the BC and Alberta developers in conjunction with Salt Spring Island Water Preservation Society, is one example of why area residents and environmentalists have a “so far, so good” attitude towards Channel Ridge Properties Ltd. (CRP).

CRP is being lauded for approaching environmental groups with offers to maintain the natural setting around the village. The Salt Spring Conservancy would like that concern to translate into saving 800 acre. “Our prime interest is if we can protect land north of the village,” said Peter Lamb, Conservancy president.

The building of 405 village units makes CRP the biggest development, to date, on the Gulf Islands and six times bigger than Poet’s Cove on South Pender Island. “We’re not against the village as such but we want it to be done right,” said John Myers, Channel Ridge Owners Association (CROA) president.

Myers knew about the CRP village plans when he bought property in the area 15 years ago. (Previous CRP owners purchased the land 20 years ago.) After many delays, the project began to move forward last year.

Myers presides over a homeowners association that, with 84 residences as members, is the largest on the island. Residents are active volunteers at the library, thrift store, personal care home, hospital, sailing club and visitors’ information center. In short, they are involved in the community.

The possibility of CRP units having multi-owners who may live here only part-time could mean the island’s culture will change. “We’ve moved from a funky little island to a more sophisticated place,” Myers said. “It (Salt Spring) will lose its charm.”

With the Islands Trust expected to approve CRP ‘s application to log the area soon, CROA’s present concern is logging trucks traveling down roads not suitable for heavy traffic for two months. A request to do the logging in phases has been rejected. CRP would like to complete logging during the rainy season.

Myers noted that the logging will be followed by eight to ten years of construction workers traveling over the Sunset-Broadwell area roads. He welcomes the employment and business this will bring to the island but speculated, with local builders work-saturated, those from Nanaimo, Duncan and Chemainus are more likely to benefit.

There are many children who use the eight school buses that drive over the roads. Other safety issues include how quickly 1000 people can move out of the area in the event of a fire or earthquake. These are CRP aspects that leave CROA members with “mixed feelings” about the development.

Lamb believes nobody really wanted a developers’ village from an environmental point of view. It is in an area that will significantly increase island traffic as residents serve their business needs in the commercial center of Ganges. CRP will have 80,000 ft. commercial space but it remains to be seen if business will be attracted to an area outside the Ganges hub.

Lamb has, however, been “cautiously optimistic” based on his dealings with CRP. They have set aside trails so everyone will be able to continue to commune with nature in the area. Ecologically, the trees that remain will prevent water runoff and soil erosion, especially in hilly places.

One old growth forest area was identified and CRP has agreed to leave it be. There are also plants for rainwater catchments, agriculture, orchards and gardens in the village. The Conservancy is now looing at the Garry oaks situation in the hope of protecting what remains. (Many were remoed years ago when the property was first purchased as a village site.)

Lamb is hopeful that 800 acres north of the village will be left alone. He nows, though, that once they get going “logging companies can cut down all sorts of stuff. What they say and what they do is not always the same.” Sixty acres of logs are expected to be removed to make room for the village site.

*If public relations can be used as a yardstick to measure CPR’s concern for the environment then the company has scored high points. This week, islanders saw their latest local media blitz. Community Relations Team member Deborah Folka also points to the company newsletters on its website for more information concerning its sensitivity to “the issues of Salt Spring Island such as access roads, water, trails, green space an the pressures of additional population.” It is


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Tanya is the author of four books: Confessions of a Tea Leaf Reader (can be purchased from the author or from, Friends I Never Knew, Dreams & Tricksters and Women Rights/Writes.

Tanya works as a psychic reading doing in person and long distance tea leaf and tarot readings, psychic channelling, mediumship and gypsy card reading. She is also a reiki master and fulltime housesitter. To access information for these services, go to her web at or her pages on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Google. Her email is and her cell phone number is 250-538-0086.

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