What is the difference between humans and Himalayan blackberries? Himalayan blackberries provide food and wildlife habitat, but both behave like invasive species. So what is the definition of an invasive species?
“An invasive species is an introduced organism that becomes overpopulated and harms its new environment. Although most introduced species are neutral or beneficial to other species, invasive species negatively affect habitats and bioregions, causing ecological, environmental and economic damage,” according to Wikipedia.
This quote sums up what is happening to what was once “Wise, Wild, Sooke” and so many places in what was once “Super Natural BC”.
It is heartbreaking and sickening to experience the utter disregard for the wildlife and habitat that made Sooke unique. Why, as humans, can’t we expand our definition of community to include other living beings who live here too – a real housing policy for all?
About five or six years ago I was told by a Sooke district official in a speakeasy at The Stick that the previous council allowed developers to buy out the bylaw that said they had to keep a certain part of the current land development as green space. .
Honestly, I don’t see any evidence that this is any different from the current advice. And please don’t give these developments cute nature names that negate the total displacement and possible death of animals, migratory birds, native plants, trees and other species that existed there before the housing takeover.
Newspaper reports tell us that our prolonged drought is due to an overly warm Pacific Ocean between here and Japan. (It’s called a double El Niño effect, sounds better than global warming).
Science now knows that intact coastal forests create inland rainfall. It’s hard not to be upset all the time by what’s going on here. But kudos to the Sooke District councilors who had the courage and political will to vote for the Official Community Plan. At least it’s a start to creating environmental policy and protection for Sooke, as delays allow the current unchecked Langfordian politics to take over.
I’ve lived in Sooke for seven years, and I don’t know how many times I’ve given the requested contribution to some public planning events in Sooke with no noticeable change. No wonder people give up trying. But when greed and selfishness are the strengths of those who don’t consider anything or anyone else, they don’t give up.
Of course, we are a divided community. Some of us care about wildlife and habitat protection.
Letter to the Sooke Editor