Open letter to Karen Baltgailis and the Yukon Conservation Society:
I read your letter to the paper about the land-use plan for the Peel Watershed. I gather you speak for the consensus of your organization. As such I would like to play the devil’s advocate in some of the things you have to say about this process.
Specifically, you state the Yukon Conservation Society is recommending the following:
“Exploration access has almost all been by air to date
– there is no need for road access for exploration, and impacts from it would be detrimental to tourism, wildlife and cultural values.”
What it is that I do not understand is how tourism fits into this platform. Certainly, boat load after boat load of affluent tourists going up and down and camping on these pristine rivers, then hiking to your pristine view sites, would have as much or more impact on wildlife and cultural values as does mineral exploration.
And what about the airplanes and/or choppers needed to fly the travellers into these pristine areas and then back along with the canoes and/or rafts, gear and all the bags of human waste (or do they leave it in the woods?), to the area upstream where they commenced? Then start all over again with a new group!
If your society claims to represent the wilderness, at least do not be biased in your presentation.