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Letter: Say no to coal mining

Did you know that in Clearwater County, the headwaters of some of the most beautiful clear rivers of our eastern slopes, there has been 2,262 quarters of land sold for coal leases?

That is equal to 1,400 square kilometers, or 361,866 acres. Put into perspective, the coal leases take up the area of approximately 36,186,600 city homes.

Whether you travel west from Caroline over Corkscrew mountain, south east from Nordegg towards Ram River Falls on the trunk road, south west from Rocky Mountain House down Hwy 752, or heading down the North Fork Prairie creek road, the potential to encounter open pit coal mining activity in the foothills is a concern.

If open pit metallurgical coal mining is allowed to develop in the eastern slopes it will threaten headwater quality with selenium pollution. Our drinking water and that of our future generations. There will also be decreased volume in our headwaters. Irreparable landscape damage has and more will be done. There will be hillsides and mountain sides left with gaping scars that can never be recovered to its natural state. This not only impacts how we will see it, but it also affects tourism.

We have some of the most beautiful country in the world, and open pit coal mining will destroy that forever. Speak up! Write to your MLA and government ministers and tell them how you feel. We and our future generations are at serious risk.

Stand today for our future generations.

Helen Lewis, Red Deer