A trip to Kwikwetlem territories 

At the beginning of spring, I took a trip over to Coquitlam where the incredible volunteers with the Tri-cities Force of Nature Alliance organized a film screening of Fracking the Peace. I was joined by Ben Gormley, from Neighbours United, and former Port Coquitlam city council member, Laura Dupont, on a panel discussing the impacts fracked gas has on peoples’ health both in Northern B.C., where I grew up, and even in kitchens everywhere.            

Attendees shared that they were deeply moved bythe film and had a lot of questions for the panel. People were so engaged that library staff had to kick us out at closing time! 

What I took away from the event was that we need to do a better job educating people about the complete life cycle of fracked methane gas: where it leaks and how it impacts our health. 

The fossil gas industry has done such a good job with its shiny marketing that people don’t know that “LNG” and “natural gas” are actually methane, which comes from fracking in Northeastern B.C.

In fact, most British Columbians don’t even know that there is fracking in our province, or that that’s how we get the gas that heats our homes and cooks our food. 

They certainly don’t know fracked gas is toxic to our health and is driving the climate crisis

We all need to do a better job of educating our friends, families and communities about the dangers of fracked methane gas so that more people will join the fiery movement to get it out of our homes and to stop producing it in our province (let alone exporting it to the rest of the world). 

While our governments try to ramp up fracking, we need to ramp up our truth campaign:  fracked gas makes our homes unsafe

The event reminded me that face-to-face conversations make a real difference. I’m grateful that the Force of Nature Alliance invited me there to speak both as a campaigner working to end gas hook ups in new homes and as someone with lived experience growing up next door to the fracking industry.

Whether it’s being burned in a flare stack on the Montney shield or a gas burner in our own kitchen: fracked gas and its toxic fumes hurt us all.  

If you’re interested in hosting an event on this issue in your community and you would like to get a speaker from Dogwood to attend, please don’t hesitate to get in touch at ashley@dogwoodbc.ca 

If you’re located in the Tri-cities area, please consider writing a letter to your local decision makers to adopt the highest level of the zero carbon step code in Coquitlam so that all new buildings will use clean electricity rather than toxic fracked gas. 

You can also write a letter to Premier David Eby asking him to show leadership and end all new gas hook ups across the province immediately.

Getting Together Over Art and Donuts

After the trip to Coquitlam, I joined Dogwood supporters in Victoria to do a political art build and talk about FortisBC’s disinformation campaigns. The company has been misleading British Columbians about the true health and climate impacts of their toxic methane gas. 

This was the first time I’ve been part of a political art build in years! 

I always forget how fun it is to get together with like-minded people to pick up a paintbrush and do art. It’s the simple things that bring us joy, and spending time together over donuts and banner-making is just one of those things that never gets old. 

We had a great turnout. Some volunteers traveled by ferry to paint with us! It was great to see old friends and to meet new ones. I hope you can make it out the next time we get together.

Dogwood Out in Full Force

Now that spring is officially here, Dogwood staff and volunteers are finding more in-person events to organize or join. 

Kai accompanied the Wet’suwet’en delegation to the RBC AGM in Toronto;  

Paige, Dinjot and Kiranvir had a beautiful table at Vaisakhi in Vancouver; 

Fraser Valley Climate Action partnered with us to table at the Rotary club climate fair in Chilliwack, handing out our fortisexposed.ca fact sheets and getting petition signatures for our new Safer Homes campaign;

While where I live in Victoria, a group of concerned residents came together to protest against FortisBC’s political meddling into municipal governments on Vancouver Island.

While the Association of Vancouver Island and Coastal Communities (AVICC) listened to FortisBC’s presentation of greenwashed misinformation at their annual convention and prepared to eat a FortisBC sponsored gala dinner, we showed up to make sure elected leaders got the facts about FortisBC and their greenwashed fossil gas. 

We brought out the beautiful signs and banners we made together, we wrote letters to Premier David Eby to stop letting Fortis poison us, and we handed out fortisexposed.ca fact sheets to councilors as they went in to equip them against Fortis’s lies.

It was great to see so many friends at the event and to meet with supportive city councilors who have demonstrated true leadership by speeding up the adoption of the zero carbon step code in their communities, and pushing back against Fortis’ bullying. 

We were also happy to hear that FortisBC was put on notice about “the controversy outside.” 

I can’t wait to see what the rest of spring and summer holds. Will you be getting out into your community, too?