EDITORIAL: Environmental concerns a sticky wicket

Compromises and shades of grey are needed when balancing environmental concerns with progress.

An owl looks over construction happening in its backyard.

No one wants to destroy the environment.

It’s probably fair to say that most folks profess, and likely genuinely have, at least a passing concern for the impact of how we live our daily lives.

Sure, we may whinge about the inconvenience of having to, say, sort our trash or unplug our cellphone chargers from the wall when we aren’t using them, but we can all agree that the motivation behind such cumbersome disruptions to our day is pure and good.

Even with larger (perhaps) questionable environmental quandaries, those involved in conceptualizing, planning, approving and executing proposed projects are seldom out to do harm.

As the recent public hearings into the MK Delta Lands Group’s proposed industrial development on the edge of Burns Bog highlighted, environmental issues are often at the top of people’s lists of reasons to either support or oppose a project, even trumping other concerns.

Proponents of the development argue that the roughly three-to-one ratio of land preserved to land used is a win for conservancy efforts and a great compromise between commercial and environmental interests.

In a perfect world, we would preserve all the land and work tirelessly to return it to it’s former natural glory, but that isn’t going to happen. Therefore, it’s hard to argue against the overall good offered by the transfer of a significant amount of land to the Corporation of Delta for perennial conservation.

Compromises and shades of grey make up the bulk of our decision-making, and the best we can do is try to strike a balance between the good, the bad and the ugly. With any luck, our choices will skew for the better overall.

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