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Monday, January 23, 2012

Anti-logging rally draws crowd near Beaver Mines


Christine Grotefeld, Rick Collier, Mike Judd, Elaine Kosier, and Jim Palmer at the Stop Castle Logging Rally
T.Lucas/C.Davis photos/videos
Chris Davis

More than 100 environmentalists and concerned citizens from the local area, Alberta and British Columbia, and afar gathered just inside the Castle Special Management Area today, Sunday, January 22. Various speakers reiterated the basic tenets of the protest, sang songs, recited poetry, and celebrated a fellowship of common objectives.  Various representatives of the press were there, including the Voice, the Crowsnest Pass Herald, and bigger outfits like Global.

Stop Castle Logging and people affiliated with various other groups have been protesting in the Castle Special Management area for 12 days now, and seem to have been thus far effective at preventing the commencement of the logging process.


Sid Marty reads to the crowd
"The logging in this location is a deliberate poke in the eye from SRD to the public of Alberta, saying 'we don't really care about the thousands of letters that have been sent in to the Premier, we don't really care about the survey that showed that a high percentage of the population between here and Lethbridge are opposed to this logging, we don't care about the scientific evidence that you present in your protest of why it shouldn't be logged'," said author, composer, and activist Sid Marty in an interview after the speeches were over. "The proper thing to do when there is this much opposition to a project is to reevaluate it and invite public input, you know,  and rethink it, and come to a determination that's in the best interest of all concerned, rather than just going ahead with this."

Mike Judd, fulcrum for the protest
Beaver Mines area resident Mike Judd has been one of the most dedicated and passionate activists in this protest.  His appearance before the assembled crowd was greeted with much enthusiasm and respect.  Judd is most certainly a man who acts on his convictions.  "We have to turn this, what we've got happening here, into something real, guys," he told the crowd.   "Because tomorrow morning, just sitting up this road there are two logging machines. My tent just happens to be sitting right in front of where they have to go.  Some SRD officers are going to come along, they're going to tell me 'Move that tent or we'll move it, we're going to start logging here, you're going to be charged with trespassing'.  Some other people have brought tents now too to back us up, and they will also be charged," Judd continued.  "And ultimately what it is going to come down to is those people that are right there at the time at the front of the line that are going to determine whether you lose this forest out here or  you don't.  It's come down to that."  Judd made it plain he was asking people to help in a concrete way.  "The time has come for us to put our money where our mouth is, to put our beliefs, what we believe in and what we stand for to the test."





A young voice declares her fondness for forests


Video from this event:



For more on this event, please watch the following videos of some of the people who spoke at it and check out some of our earlier coverage at the following links:

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