Lake Winnipeg - Sacrificed for Politics???

Re: Lake Winnipeg - Sacrificed for Politics???

Postby Oscar » Sun Nov 16, 2014 10:50 am

FEFCHAK: A Worthy Cause - BEAUTIFUL LAKE WINNIPEG

From: John Fefchak
Sent: Saturday, November 15, 2014 12:44 PM
Subject: A Worthy Cause-BEAUTIFUL LAKE WINNIPEG

15 Nov. 2014

To: Professors, School Principles and all Teaching Staff.

A worthy cause for our waters and especially Lake Winnipeg.
Please share with your peers and students:
Become involved.

Thank You.
John Fefchak.

- - - - - -

Our Beautiful Lake Winnipeg. Tell me what I can do and I will do it. ( Prof. Eva Pip speaks to Night Hawk (CJOB Radio 680) 14 Nov, about the continuing deterioration of Lake Winnipeg): "It all comes down to the dollars and the economic drive, she says. The government and people of Manitoba are watching it happen—but not addressing what has to be done. Manitoba has to take the lead, and set the example. It is our Lake and we are not doing our part. How can we expect other provinces, and US jurisdictions to join in to help, if we don't take the initiative and do our part first."

This is what I have to offer.

Get others to help you and organize a committee. (the more, the better)

Meet and talk with your mayor and city council. Ask them to quit stalling on the sewage treatment facility that will be beneficial, by removing both phosphorus and nitrogen. Winnipeg is noted for releasing raw sewage into the river. That is not helpful to the health of the lake.

Meet with your MLA and as many Manitoba government ministers as you possibly can. (Water stewardship, Conservation and Agriculture are foremost) Get them to reduce the phosphorus limit that presently exists for agriculture. It is now at over 800 lbs. per acre. 15 −20 lbs. per acre is quite sufficient for most of the crops that are grown in Manitoba. (That would be a BIG plus)

At the present time, our provincial government permits arsenic to be put into water sources as a convenient means of disposal and allows a garbage dump to be situated in a wetland area. This is not healthy or helpful to our water sources that feed into the Lake.

Meet with your Member of Parliament. The Federal government must get more involved to help save Lake Winnipeg. About 50% of the present phosphorus load comes from our U.S. neighbour on the Red River water system. About 15% from other provinces, Ontario, Saskatchewan and Alberta. Any reduction to that load would also be a plus to help Lake Winnipeg's recovery.

Keep the pressure on and don't get discouraged. Hundreds of dedicated Manitobans have been working very hard for the past 10, 20 and even 30 years to help clean up Lake Winnipeg. Our first Water Stewardship Minister (Steve Ashton) had set a goal of reducing phosphorus in the lake to the mid 1970 levels. A worthy commitment in 2003, and something the Lake is still looking forward to after 11years of waiting.

Oh, be sure to get the children involved also, for they are the inspiration that we all need to make it happen.

Your commitment will be welcomed and appreciated. Lake Winnipeg needs everyone's help.

John Fefchak
Virden, Manitoba
204.748.2521
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Re: Lake Winnipeg - Sacrificed for Politics???

Postby Oscar » Sun Nov 16, 2014 5:10 pm

FEFCHAK: A Worthy Cause - BEAUTIFUL LAKE WINNIPEG

From: John Fefchak
Sent: Saturday, November 15, 2014 12:44 PM
Subject: A Worthy Cause-BEAUTIFUL LAKE WINNIPEG

15 Nov. 2014

To: Professors, School Principles and all Teaching Staff.

A worthy cause for our waters and especially Lake Winnipeg.
Please share with your peers and students:
Become involved.

Thank You.
John Fefchak.

- - - - - -

Our Beautiful Lake Winnipeg. Tell me what I can do and I will do it.

LISTEN: ( Prof. Eva Pip speaks to Night Hawk (CJOB Radio 680) 14 Nov, about the continuing deterioration of Lake Winnipeg):
"It all comes down to the dollars and the economic drive, she says. The government and people of Manitoba are watching it happen—but not addressing what has to be done. Manitoba has to take the lead, and set the example. It is our Lake and we are not doing our part. How can we expect other provinces, and US jurisdictions to join in to help, if we don't take the initiative and do our part first."
- Audio On Demand: (first article after the 8:00 p.m. news for November 14, 2014): [ http://www.cjob.com/audio-on-demand/ ]

This is what I have to offer.

Get others to help you and organize a committee . (the more, the better)

Meet and talk with your mayor and city council. Ask them to quit stalling on the sewage treatment facility that will be beneficial, by removing both phosphorus and nitrogen. Winnipeg is noted for releasing raw sewage into the river. That is not helpful to the health of the lake.

Meet with your MLA and as many Manitoba government ministers as you possibly can. (Water stewardship,Conservation and Agriculture are foremost) Get them to reduce the phosphorus limit that presently exists for agriculture. It is now at over 800 lbs. per acre. 15 −20 lbs. per acre is quite sufficient for most of the crops that are grown in Manitoba. (hat would be a BIG plus)

At the present time, our provincial government permits arsenic to be put into water sources as a convenient means of disposal and allows a garbage dump to be situated in a wetland area. This is not healthy or helpful to our water sources that feed into the Lake.

Meet with your Member of Parliament. The Federal government must get more involved to help save Lake Winnipeg. About 50% of the present phosphorus load comes from our U.S. neighbour on the Red River water system. About 15% from other provinces, Ontario,Saskatchewan and Alberta. Any reduction to that load would also be a plus to help Lake Winnipeg's recovery.

Keep the pressure on and don't get discouraged. Hundreds of dedicated Manitobans have been working very hard for the past 10, 20 and even 30 years to help clean up Lake Winnipeg. Our first Water Stewardship Minister (Steve Ashton) had set a goal of reducing phosphorus in the lake to the mid 1970 levels. A worthy commitment in 2003, and something the Lake is still looking forward to after 11 years of waiting.

Oh, be sure to get the children involved also, for they are the inspiration that we all need to make it happen.

Your commitment will be welcomed and appreciated. Lake Winnipeg needs everyone's help.

John Fefchak
Virden, Manitoba
204.748.2521
Oscar
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Re: Lake Winnipeg - Sacrificed for Politics???

Postby Oscar » Sun Nov 16, 2014 5:14 pm

FEFCHAK: The State and Health of lake Winnipeg

From: John Fefchak
Sent: Thursday, November 13, 2014 11:04 AM
To: WESTERN PROD ; BRENDA McPHAIL WESTERN PRODUCER LIBRARIAN
Subject: The State and Health of Lake Winnipeg

Letter to the Editor.

Something to Think About: ( Everyone responsible for health of Lake Winnipeg) - Interlake Enterprise, 12 Nov. 2014)

Repeatedly, Premier Selinger has stated his government's push to build new hydro generating stations in the north to meet growing domestic demand and to sell more power to the United States and Saskatchewan.

This, according to Manitoba Hydro President & CEO, Scott Thomson, is the only sensible way to provide future power requirements, rather than a natural gas solution. (re: Gas fired plant can't meet power needs, Wpg. Free Press,16 Dec. 2013)
[ http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/opinio ... 78021.html ]

Let us all hope that brighter minds exist to-day than when the JenPeg development project was undertaken. This goes way back to 1958. Let's think about Lake Winnipeg.

This was a Canada and Manitoba agreement to jointly undertake the development of this hydro electrical potential. It was signed in 1966 by then Conservative Premier, Sir Raymond Roblin. Construction began in 1972 and was completed in 1979.

The causeway installation at Hecla Island was completed in the early 1970's under the watch of the NDP government.

I am aware that grave concerns were raised during both developments as to how this would affect the state and natural water flow of Lake Winnipeg. As we all know now and realize that it has.

Of course, these were important undertakings and the concerns that were being voiced were put aside and well….just ignored. The government experts and their own scientists knew better.

The people who knew the lake, and there were scientists among them, were ridiculed for their opposition and opinions. For after all….this was progress!

Now, 35 years later, we can point out, who is responsible and what is to blame.

Lake Winnipeg has become a huge toilet bowl. The flushing mechanism has been tampered with, and is no longer operating as it should.

An intriguing article in 2006 "Lake Winnipeg is Heading to the Morgue" by columnist, Francis Russell, points out many causes for the demise and situation of Lake Winnipeg to-day. [ http://www.highbeam.com/doc/1P3-1185829601.html ]

Nobody paid attention back then either; now the hearses are gathering for the remains.

John Fefchak.
Virden, Man.
204 748 2521. 13 Nov. 2014
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Re: Lake Winnipeg - Sacrificed for Politics???

Postby Oscar » Wed Jun 17, 2015 10:17 am

Cleaning Lake Winnipeg 3 tonnes at a time

[ http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/opinio ... 31071.html ]

Bill Redekop, Winnipeg Free Press, June 15, 2015

HOLLAND -- It has all the intricacies of a jail break, for phosphorus to travel from a little wetland near Holland into Lake Winnipeg.

First, phosphorus runs into Pelly's Lake, which empties into the Boyne River, which drains into the Norquay Channel, a man-made channel from Carman to Brunkild. The water direction is mostly northeast to this point.

When it hits the Morris River at Brunkild, the phosphorus-laden water suddenly darts southeast, emptying into the Red River at Morris. Then it beelines straight north for Lake Winnipeg.

But not anymore.

A water-retention project to be officially unveiled Tuesday will take three tonnes of phosphorus out of the Lake Winnipeg watershed annually at Pelly's Lake, and five tonnes once a second phase is completed.

It may seem like a drop in the bucket compared with the estimated 5,000 tonnes of phosphorus dumped annually into Lake Winnipeg, but it's a start.

"It's our attempt to put a natural fix on a man-made problem," said Justin Reid, manager of the LaSalle Redboine conservation district.

A dam to slow runoff from wetland Pelly's Lake is the main feature of the Pelly's Lake watershed-management project. Controlling the flow allows sediment to settle out. The phosphorus is taken up by cattails.

"Cattail gobbles up all the phosphorus. They love phosphorus," Reid said.

The problem is when cattails die and decompose, they release the phosphorus back into the water, usually in spring when water runs over frozen ground.

So an arrangement has been made for the cattail to be harvested by nearby Oakridge Hutterite Colony, who will use it as biofuel to replace coal energy.

Even after the cattails are burned, however, the ash still contains 88-90% of the phosphorus. The colony will spread the ash on farm fields as fertilizer.

"In essence, what we're doing is creating a phosphorus cycle instead of a phosphorus drain," Reid said.
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Re: Lake Winnipeg - Sacrificed for Politics???

Postby Oscar » Tue Jun 23, 2015 8:44 am

Government not placing priority on water

[ http://www.brandonsun.com/opinion/lette ... 62291.html ]

Brandon Sun June 23, 2015

An open letter to the Conservation/Water Stewardship minister and Premier Selinger regarding Manitoba’s Little Saskatchewan River.

There has been no decision on the appeals provided, and that was 34 months ago. Replies to all my previous requests are repetitive:

“A decision has not yet been made on this appeal.”

What is taking so long, I ask?

I don’t think that the Conservation/Water Stewardship minister spent very much time looking at the appeals and why the Little Saskatchewan River should be given a reprieve — at least, until a dedicated in-flow study was carried out as promised by former Water Stewardship minister Christine Melnick.

How many filed appeals would it take, as apparently nine was not enough? Let’s face it. This was a “done deal” from its plan and early conception. The issuing of a licence was only a formality. Pipeline infrastructure was being put in place as far back as 2011 according to eye witness reports.

What does that suggest to you?

This is just one more example of how the province does business. Water continually gets trumped by development and economics. Regulations are not followed and it is evident that the entire water staff involved with this, have some explaining to do. Its time to discharge the lot and hire personnel to do the work properly, as it should be.

Manitoba’s ombudsman released a negative report several years ago on how the province randomly issues water licences. Perhaps the appropriate department and the minister have not taken the time to read that report, as yet?

That said, I do not believe “above and beyond requirements” were taken to obtain environmental approval.

Let’s face the facts as they have been presented by Ms. Ruth Pryzner: “The public interest and the interest of the Little Saskatchewan River have been abandoned by the province. The betrayal of the basic fundamentals of Stewardship and protection of this water system is evident.”

The public expects and deserves better, and as we have been warned by Justice Horace Krever: “The relationship between a regulator and the regulated must never become one in which the regulator (the province) loses sight that it regulates only in the public interest and not in the interests of the regulated.”

A full public inquiry is in order as to why this was allowed to take place.

John Fefchak
Virden, MB
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Re: Lake Winnipeg - Sacrificed for Politics???

Postby Oscar » Thu Nov 26, 2015 1:57 pm

Why is our Interlake in peril?

by Peter Marykuca,

Interlake Enterprise Nov. 25 2015 page # 4
[ http://enterprisenews.ca/wp-content/upl ... 5-2015.pdf ]

Interlake Spectator Nov. 26 2015 page # 7
[ http://eedition.interlakespectator.com/ ... 5112501/#7 ]

To whom it may concern:

Most logical and probable causes of negative environmental impacts created by man in our Interlake Region are:

(1) Shoreline and marsh erosion ..it is because the Hecla Island Causeway is more like a dam, it has changed Lake Winnipeg's ( Elevation 217 m ) natural currents! The swirls created are causing the erosion!

(2) Overloading of nutrients that go to Lake Winnipeg .. Nutrient run off from agricultural activities primarily hog sewage!

(3) Tampering with overland water courses.. Assiniboine River diversion to Lake Manitoba, to help save Winnipeg from flooding! In its natural state Lake Manitoba ( Elevation 248 m ) and Lake Winnipegosis ( Elevation 254 m ) are mostly artesian type water. Extended use of the diversion has caused Lake Manitoba prolong flooding and created high water tables, including unknown amounts of Jackfish to enter Lake Manitoba, What effect has that done to the commercial fishing ? High water tables in the Interlake are causing saturated soils? Thousand of acres of trees ( Evergreen, Willow, Poplar) are dying/drowning! Its because of the elevation of Lake Winnipegosis and Lake Manitoba to Lake Winnipeg? Their combined water is always running down hill.

Could that high water table also be the cause of decline in garter snakes and gophers?

Sensible corrective measures that could help:

(1) Build a bridge to Hecla Island.
Rather then waste millions on a ditch to Lake St. Martin.

(2) Outlaw the spreading of all the hog waste liquid or solid in any form.

(3) Close down the division route, let Winnipeg and farm fields flood.
If the public is offended, create a tax that will fund and find proper engineering and alternate by-pass solutions. That are well thought out! That will work without side effects! It was dumb to allow the Forks Walkway to be constructed below the high-water mark! Equally as dumb was to rush construction of the new stadium and in the end to allow building it without a roof!

Is dumb now classified as a... Ya But ?

Respectfully,

Peter Marykuca,
Interlake Resident
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Re: Lake Winnipeg - Sacrificed for Politics???

Postby Oscar » Thu Dec 10, 2015 9:57 am

We must respect, appreciate our water resources

[ http://www.brandonsun.com/opinion/lette ... html?thx=y ]

December 10, 2015

An ancient trust doctrine dating back to sixth-century Rome has been declared. “By the law of nature these things are common to mankind — the air, running water, the sea, and consequently the shores of the sea.” (re: “Our Water Resources Are A Public Trust,” Brandon Sun, Nov. 28, 2015 [ http://www.brandonsun.com/opinion/colum ... html?thx=y ])

Officially, March 22 has been allotted as World Water Day, where we are to appreciate and recognize the importance of this life-sustaining liquid; a dedication day set aside by the United Nations to address and examine water issues around the world.

Canada and our province of Manitoba have been blessed with an abundance of water and for that we must be grateful, for there are many people in this world who do not have clean water to drink and cook with. They struggle every day to get by on five or six litres of whatever they can obtain.

On average in Canada, we will consume, use, waste and flush more than 250 litres every day (per person) and because of our abundant sources, we sometimes tend to take our water and its use for granted.

However, changes are coming to the forefront and these changes, if not corrected, will eventually affect us also and not in a very nice way.

The “green” in the waters of Lake Winnipeg is not because of St. Patrick’s Day celebrations. It is because there is an excess of sediments and nutrients from the immediate area, and from the huge watershed that feeds into the lake. Why is this all happening now?

Well, in fact, it probably has been progressing over the past 40 years or more, and through the years, nature’s own cleaning and filtering devices, such as marshes, sloughs, ponds, etc., have been greatly reduced and practically eliminated. Much of the land has been drained. Large cattle feedlots and industrial hog operations are contributing vast amounts of manure and cities, like Winnipeg, occasionally permit the dumping of raw sewage into the rivers.

As well, municipalities are not exempt from their own contributions of pollution, and the list goes on.

In so many instances, we have eliminated nature’s defences, and our government(s), although professing to be defenders of water, knowingly are agreeable to allow lakes to become polluted as dumping sites for the benefit of mining operations.

With actions like that, I have come to the conclusion that perhaps the United Nations has a role to play right here in Manitoba and Canada. For in so many cases, we, along with our governments, have not dedicated the respect and appreciation that our waters deserve.

In closing, I would like to thank the newspaper for publishing the article provided by ecologist Dr. Scott Forbes from the University of Winnipeg.

John Fefchak
Virden, MB
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Re: Lake Winnipeg - Sacrificed for Politics???

Postby Oscar » Thu Mar 03, 2016 10:42 am

Open Letter to Premier Greg Selinger – “Questions Abound”

Published in The Interlake Enterprise – March 2, 2016 – Page 4
[ http://enterprisenews.ca/wp-content/upl ... 2-2016.pdf ]

Dear Premier Greg Selinger

RE: Weighing in on the Interlake: Interview with Premier Greg Selinger, Part 2 – The Express Weekly News - February 25, 2016 - Page 20-22

Your public admission stating that mistakes were made, does not sit well with me, and I am not alone!

My questions to you, Mr.Selinger, are:

Is the unnatural over flooding of Lake Manitoba, with surface waters resulting in high water tables in our Interlake ?

Do trees have effects on property values and on wild life ?

Has the flooding affected crop production and cattle farming ?

Could this be the cause of mould issues in homes ?

Give me a reason to support you?

Do the right thing with the Assiniboine Diversion and stop flooding Lake Manitoba, for you are killing the Interlake.

For as an old saying goes, you will not be remembered for what you did, but rather or what you did not do!

Admitting that mistakes were made in the past is one thing; however, you are neglecting and making a bigger mistake for our foreseeable future. That mistake is the deliberate flooding of Lake Manitoba. Considering that Lake Manitoba is fed by clear artesian water, the flooding has saturated the soils in the Interlake!

This has caused, and is causing, the drowning of thousands of acres of trees; excess moisture is also causing a mould situation in some homes.

If appropriate studies were done before hand maybe we would not be in this situation?

Mr. Selinger, can you please explain why you are permitting this to happen?

Yes, you have made mistakes but a bigger mistake is to ignore the telling signs that are observed in the Interlake. Your plans have proven faulty.

The only sensible answer we now have is... the Interlake is dying. All because of wretched and irreparable action plan and your refusal to change.

Respectfully

Peter Marykuca -
Interlake Resident
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Re: Lake Winnipeg - Sacrificed for Politics???

Postby Oscar » Wed Apr 12, 2017 8:07 am

Environmental protection compromised

[ http://www.brandonsun.com/opinion/lette ... 21204.html? ]

by John Fefchak, Virden, MB April 12, 2017

Re: The editorial "Review Of Pork Industry Wouldn’t Be Hogwash" (April 7) in The Brandon Sun.
[ http://www.brandonsun.com/opinion/revie ... html?thx=y ]

I very much doubt the Pallister government or the MPC (Manitoba Pork Council) would even consider such a review. The last one in 2007 (Clean Environment Commission) was watered down and in "lock-step" under the guidance of Stan Struthers, then Conservation and Environment minister.

But at least some vulnerable areas were identified and protected in the Environment Act and the NDP government knew more had to be done to help protect our water sources and Lake Winnipeg. Under the guise of red tape reduction, these gains in protections will be removed in bills now introduced into the legislature.

The bigger manure lagoons now being planned for Manitoba could become our disasters to further plague Manitobans and pollute our water sources, like what has already happened in North Carolina. Each year, North Carolina’s pig factory farms produce nearly 10 billion gallons of feces and urine. That’s enough to fill 15,000 Olympic-size swimming pools. Is this what Manitobans have to look forward to?

This raises more questions. Too few hogs, too many processing plants, or just bad planning?

In 2009, there were too many hogs! Sows were culled and enormous numbers of piglets killed, barns were shut down, and producers were paid by government, with our tax dollars, to go out of business.

The Manitoba Pork Council now claims there is a shortage of hogs to supply both Maple Leaf and the Hylife plants.

The new Pallister Conservative government has sided with the MPC to compromise the environmental protection requirements in the Save Lake Winnipeg Act so production can expand without incurring costs to upgrade existing operations and by lowering standards for new manure storage and treatment facilities. The pork industry says it is not economically feasible to adapt to current requirements and lower standards are sufficient to protect the Lake and Manitoba’s water.

Where is the personal accountability of this industry, that has been sustained with government handouts and environmental subsidies, and lobby to weaken laws to protect the public and our water sources?

It very much seems that Manitoba is on its way to end up like North Carolina where industry financial considerations trump environmental and water protection.

JOHN FEFCHAK
Virden, MB
Republished from the Brandon Sun print edition April 12, 2017
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Re: Lake Winnipeg - Sacrificed for Politics???

Postby Oscar » Sun Apr 23, 2017 8:17 am

RMs turn down new hog barns for many reasons

[ http://www.brandonsun.com/opinion/lette ... html?thx=y ]

By: Uncredited Brandon Sun April 22, 2017

Manitoba Pork’s George Matheson was heard on a recent video moaning about the fact that new hog barn proposals often get turned down at the municipal level as a result of the intervention of "a few, poorly informed rural residents." It’s the reason they have decided to create a swine development corporation to assist new barn applications through the bureaucracy. Heavy duty public relations, in other words.

New barns can bring economic development and jobs, so why turn them down? A rural municipality of course has a duty to safeguard the interests of its residents and ratepayers first and foremost. There is not a lot to love about modern factory hog farming.

Some of the issues raised by concerned residents include:

• Risk to surface waters as result of storing and applying large volumes of liquid manure.
• Risk to groundwater as result of seepage from manure lagoons.
• Negative impact on quality of life and property values.
• Large water requirements potentially affecting the water supply of others.
• Wear and tear on municipal road network.
• Non-resident corporate ownership where the profits are siphoned out of the local area.
• Animal welfare issues around large numbers of pigs kept in confinement.

And yes, of course, there is the stink. Above all else, probably the biggest single reason rural residents get upset at the prospect of a hog barn for a neighbour. Hog producers are in denial that this is a problem and refuse to adopt lagoon covers, barn scrubbers and bio-filters that can dramatically reduce that problem.

The approval process at the municipal level happens at a conditional use hearing. The proponent and his consultant make their pitch and the relevant government agencies provide a technical review in support of the application. The process is heavily flawed in that issues like the manure lagoon and water supply have not been scrutinized at that point. This leaves council with very sketchy information on which to base their decision.

Council is, however, bound to follow the Planning Act, which states that they can only approve a conditional use if it "will not be detrimental to the health or general welfare of people living or working in the surrounding area, or negatively affect other properties or potential development in the surrounding area."

Anyone living within range of one of these factory-style hog barns knows they do not meet these conditions. That makes council’s decision a whole lot easier. They do still have that right to say no.

So, until the industry changes its ways, the prospects for expansion in the hog business are likely pretty dismal. And those "few, poorly informed rural residents" will continue to grow in number, and make their voices heard.

Jon Crowson,
Oak River MB

Republished from the Brandon Sun print edition April 22, 2017
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Re: Lake Winnipeg - Sacrificed for Politics???

Postby Oscar » Sun Apr 23, 2017 8:22 am

Take action on environment

[ http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/opinio ... 40623.html ]

April 22, 2017 John Fefchak Winnipeg Free Press

You cannot walk on this earth without leaving an imprint on nature. Everything that you do or do not do is accountable.

Tread softly then - and with a gentle and tender step - for our grandchildren will inherit what we leave; and Mother Earth will continue to enrich all generations that will follow us.

Nobody made a greater mistake then those who did nothing because they could do only a little.

We can all do something to help change the ongoing degradation of our planet.

Pray. Sow seeds of peace around. Get involved to change politics: get informed, make our voices heard, participate, go and vote, help the less fortunate and show respect. Respect for the earth that we live on.

Have respect for all of natural wonders, our waters which sustain all living things and respect for our environment.

Respect the people and especially those who work so tirelessly in their vision of caring and protecting for those future generations, who will become heirs to what we leave. Let us all be truly grateful and worthy stewards during our time on this world, called Earth.

John Fefchak,
Virden, MB
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