To The Editor
On Thursday Nov. 26 residents from Hunter Creek Estates and Gull Lake attended the Minden Hills council meeting. The extremely large group came to protest the proposal to create a salvage yard on the adjoining property to Hunter Creek Estates.
Hunter Creek Estates is an established residential community geared to senior living. People move to this development so they can continue to live an independent active and healthy lifestyle as they navigate the challenges and health issues that come with the golden years.
The proposed salvage yard would not only be detrimental to senior health issues and quality of life but also to the environment. Hunter Creek flows through the backland of Hunter Creek Estates connecting to Gull Lake. Residents here get their water from artesian wells at the back of the property and people on Gull Lake use the lake water. The land is very sandy and permeable on this property and where the proposed salvage yard is to be located. According to the Canadian Auto Recycler’s Environmental Code (CARE) spills of hazardous liquids on permeable surfaces would lead to contamination of ground water wetlands and fresh water supplies. Therefore the proposed site is not suitable for a salvage yard.
A salvage yard deals with hazardous fluids like mercury which can contaminate soils and water bodies mercury vapor (1 gram of mercury vapor can contaminate 3.8 million litres of fresh water) nickel and lithium from batteries lead acid battery acid freon fluorethane oil anti- freeze other lubricants and solvents on a daily basis.
At least three seniors living in Hunter Creek Estates are on oxygen breathing machines or use puffers daily. Air quality is a huge issue for people with respiratory problems. The thought of summer dust from truck traffic and the possibility of mercury vapor contamination along with all the other lubricants and solvent vapors is horrifying to contemplate for any human but especially for a fragile senior.
Rain and snowfall can also affect the safe operations of a salvage yard. Heavy rain can flood areas where contaminates are stored or spilled pressure washers can also create contaminated run off. Waste can accumulate on snow and become a problem during spring thaw and run-off.
The storage of old tires presents a different problem. A tire fire has significant impact on air land and water quality. More disturbing is the fact that old tire piles create an excellent breeding ground for mosquitoes that carry West Nile Virus.
So much is at stake here: wetlands drinking water air and land pollution and the health and safety of people who live in this retirement community. We all want quality of life for the humans wildlife lake life and the flora and fauna that share this unique part of The Land Between. Let’s conserve our ecosystem for now and for the generations that come after us.
Hunter Creek Estates