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END:CIV Clear Cuts

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So, as a long time environmental, grassroots activist and as a creature living in the thrashing end game of civilization I am intimately acquainted with the landscape of loss and have grown accustomed to carrying the daily weight of despair I've walked clear cuts that wrap around mountains and drop into valleys and climb ridges to fragment watershed after watershed and I've sat silent near empty streams that two generations ago were lashed into whiteness by uncountable salmon coming home to spawn and die. Out here in B.C. and across North America when they do industrial logging they actually take and just remove all of the trees. They level everything. They leave nothing but stumps and slash piles. and they burn the slash piles, and they take out all of the timber. and what's left is a wasteland. It's like if you took a rainforest and turned it into a desert. That's what a clear cut is. They use them for pulp. They export them whole to the United States and to Japan. Umm, there's not very much milling that happens anymore in B.C. It's just getting exported for pulp and paper, and fiber board, and plywood, and whatever else. Not a lot of value added. Industrial civilization, civilization itself, but especially civilization is not and can never be sustainable. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure out that any way of life that's based on the use of non-renewable resources won't last. There's still a strong push to harvest as much western cedar as they can. They're bringing in huge helicopters to do that. and they're high-grading; selecting only the real good high-guality timber and leaving the rest laying there, you know, in a junk heap. So that's why we keep on, you know, fighting back. I think the last straw was when they wanted to log the valley of Ista because of its historical and spiritual significance to our people. But they log it in spite, you know, just to make a point against our resistance, against our overall, persistance, with regards to treaties or encroachment, incringements of industry; development in our territories. It destroys the soil in a lot these areas like this clearing behind me up on the hill. You can see the soil is exposed. The ultraviolet kills off all the mosses, the funguses that hold the forest, the soil together. When the stumps rot and the roots die, then the slopes slide, and often there is not much regrowth. There is no regeneration of the forest. They do some replanting. It doesn't always work because there is no soil left. It washes down into the streams. It kills the salmon. It fills up the resevoirs. It causes all kinds of flood damage downstream. That's terrorism. Stripping down all the trees, ripping up the trees and the forest. Now they're going to rip out the guts of the land here with... looking for copper and gold. And, there has to be some kind of focus to address the injustice to our people, the injustice to the land, to the water, to the wildlife. The injustice to the green life and the salmon life, and the injustice to the people that want to stand up for it. The thing is, when we block the road, these trees are very valuable, and the laws are all profit driven, they're all driven by the corporations. The police are there to enforce the corporation's right to log; not to enforce our right to stop them and protect the ecosystem. There is so little that's left of the old growth forests like this that we see on the sides here that people are putting their bodies on the line. They are willing to make huge sacrifices to stop the forests from being sacrificed, and the water, and the air quality, and the global climate. Find ways to fight. Fight and protect what we have here. Just look at this place. Beautiful place. Why would you want to destroy it?

Video Details

Duration: 6 minutes and 25 seconds
Country: United States
Language: English
Producer: Franklin López
Director: Franklin López
Views: 205
Posted by: doctormikemd on Jul 9, 2009

This rough cut features Qwatsinas of the Nuxalk Nation who inhabit the central coast of British Columbia and Zoe Blunt from the Forest Action Network. The archival footage comes from, Pickaxe and Qwatsinas’ collection. The music is by stig inge oy.

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