July 18, 2014 2:46 pm
Updated: July 18, 2014 6:57 pm

Activists to call for repeal of controversial act on Canada Parks Day


Environmental activists and concerned citizens will be giving out special postcards to mark Canada Parks Day tomorrow.

The postcards are addressed to Environment Minister Mary Polak, asking her government to repeal the controversial Park Amendment Act.

The act allows private companies to conduct research in B.C. parks and apply to have sections of park land utilized for industrial development.

The bill was passed earlier this year with little public consultation.

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On Saturday, volunteers with Sierra Club BC and other environmental organizations will be talking to park visitors throughout B.C. about the new legislation.

“From Kitimat to Kamloops, to spots in the Fraser Valley to the Gulf Islands to Vancouver Island, people are going to be out in parks, talking to visitors,” says Caitlyn Vernon with Sierra Club BC. “We are calling on Minister Polak to stand up for parks, not pipelines and repeal this act.”

Vernon says more than 167,000 people signed the petition to keep B.C. parks free of industrial activity in a matter of two weeks.

The petition was delivered to Minister Polak in May.

“It has really hit a nerve with British Columbians who disagree to opening our parks to pipelines, logging and other industrial activity,” says Vernon.  “This legislation was rammed through the Legislature with no opportunity for British Columbians to give feedback, so a lot of people do not know what is going on.”

Watch: Proposed changes to BC Parks Act worry environmentalists

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