An online petition has been created by advocacy group called Code Blue BC, in order to halt logging by Tolko Industries above the Duteau Creek watershed.
The Regional District of North Okanagan received notice April 9 that Vernon-based Tolko Industries intends to begin logging in May on a cut block 500 metres above the district's Duteau Creek water intake.
The RDNO is urging Tolko to halt its plans until both parties can find a mutually beneficial solution.
The petition is directed at Katrine Conroy, Minister of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development, and Harwinder Sandhu, MLA Vernon-Monashee.
“Allowing Tolko Industries to clearcut Vernon's community watershed will threaten the PRIMARY fresh water source for 50,000 people. Please don't allow this to happen on your watch,” said the petition.
“The proposed clearcutting will take place less than 500 metres from the fresh water intake of the new $70 million Duteau Creek Water Treatment Plant, potentially within days.”
Chad Stream posted in the Vernon and Area Community Forum group on Facebook,
“For those members of the community that are concerned about Tolkos intent to log in the Duteau Creek area which is opposed by the RDNO, there will be a demonstration outside the Tolko headquarters on the 7th of May at 4pm to voice community concern. Masks and distancing will be required”
The Duteau Creek water intake supplies 60 per cent of the water for Greater Vernon, and Tolko's proposed logging activity is on top of a steep slope directly above the water source.