A flawed environmental assessment
I have reviewed the Environmental Assessment document submitted to Nova Scotia’s Department of Environment by Dexter Construction Co. in support of its application for a three-fold expansion of its Money Point quarry, and its request for permission to operate the quarry for the next 40 years, until 2058. The assessment is flawed in many important ways. In particular, the assessment does not address the most serious impacts of the proposed quarry expansion which are a) the social and economic impacts on local residents caused by Dexter’s heavy truck traffic moving through our community along a narrow, winding , hilly and much travelled road, and b) the social and economic impacts of the quarry’s industrial activities and truck traffic on our local and regional tourism sector, including erosion of our area’s reputation as a world class, unspoiled natural environment. Dexter is seeking permission to truck up to 50,000 tonnes per year of crushed rock through our community. This works out to 4000 trips by heavy trucks through our community each year for the next 40 years, mostly during the busy and economically important tourist seasons of summer and fall. These trucks create noise, dust, road congestion and safety concerns for residents and visitors alike. Ongoing efforts to promote our beautiful natural environment and our attractive harbour villages as part of an expanded tourism sector will be undermined by this truck traffic and industrial scale quarry activity. Dexter argues that since the company has been rolling trucks through our community for the last 20 years, the Company should be allowed to continue this impactful activity for 40 more years. No way, Dexter! This is 2018! The Environmental Assessment makes statements about economic benefits of the expansion, but fails to provide any numbers on such benefits. It fails to assess the broad social and economic costs to the community of the expansion. Dexter’s consultation with the community was virtually non-existent. On the basis of the inadequacies and critical omissions in the Environmental Assessment document, Nova Scotia Environment and Victoria County Council should reject the Dexter application.
Rob Macdonald Sugar Loaf, N.S.