Michelle Mungall’s monthly newsletter…

Welcome to my monthly newsletter with highlights from the last month.
View this email in your browser (https://mailchi.mp/a8b2224e7815/november2017newsletter-3341249?e=c2581b5a82)

During a short break from our current Legislative session I spent some welcomed time at home in the Kootenays. Joining me was Barbara Szymczyk, one of our Legislative Interns. Over four days we toured Creston, Kaslo, Salmo and Nelson.

We had meetings with many organizations, including the Kaslo Housing Society, Kootenay Columbia Discovery Centre Society, and Salmo Community Resources. We also toured the Jersey Emerald Mine, the Kaslo Mining Museum and Ainsworth Hot Springs Resort.

Our visits to Salmo Secondary and Prince Charles Secondary resulted in some great conversations with students and a stop at Salmo Childcare gave me the chance to teach preschoolers about voting. Pizza won the majority of votes over tacos.

We enjoyed a lovely lunch at TAPS in Creston as we connected with seniors in the community. And in Nelson we celebrated the grand opening of the new Front Counter office (https://michellemungall.us1.list-manage.com/track/click?u=f2195e67d0ac7cd7296ac6470&id=d136c092c4&e=c2581b5a82) which will provide in-person help with applications and permits for local economic development.


Bill 15
Last week I introduced Bill 15, the Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources Statutes Amendment Act, 2018 to clean up the increase in the number of orphaned natural gas wells and prevent them in the future. These changes will allow us to better protect our land, air and water while also ensuring greater fairness in the industry.

Our government continues to work hard on a variety of issues.

You may have heard that we announced legislation on cannabis last month. With public health and safety as the top priority, this legislation will provide for legal, controlled access to non-medical cannabis in British Columbia. Click here (https://michellemungall.us1.list-manage.com/track/click?u=f2195e67d0ac7cd7296ac6470&id=05b02fe1b6&e=c2581b5a82) to learn more.

We’ve taken bold action to address both housing demand and supply. We’re funding 14,000 new, affordable homes for renters, cracking down on tax evasion, and giving local governments the power to protect and encourage the building of rentals. Click here (https://michellemungall.us1.list-manage.com/track/click?u=f2195e67d0ac7cd7296ac6470&id=73d36ff036&e=c2581b5a82) to learn more about these proposed changes and how they will improve housing affordability for people in B.C.

As government, we proposed amendments to the Workers Compensation Act that, if approved by the legislature, will add Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and other mental disorders to the list of conditions that are recognized as being presumptive conditions associated with specific types of jobs. I know people in our riding who have been working extremely hard on this issue and I would like to extend a special thanks to them. READ MORE (https://michellemungall.us1.list-manage.com/track/click?u=f2195e67d0ac7cd7296ac6470&id=564d7c2b12&e=c2581b5a82)

I want to
hear from you!

Nelson-Creston Community Office
433 Josephine St. Nelson V1L 1W4


Mobile MLA Office

The next mobile office is Thursday May 10 at Kaslo’s Selkirk College Centre at
421 Front St from 11am to 3pm.

Drop by to visit with staff to access in-person services of my Community Office


April 23, 2018

Cooper Creek Cedar Ltd is giving notice that on-the-ground forest development work will begin in the Argenta-Johnsons Landing tenure in the next couple of weeks. The initial work will be conducted within the Salisbury Creek drainage.

CCC will provide regular forest development updates on the LINKS website, as well as posting updates on CCC’s website: https://coopercreekcedar.com/

CCC encourages the AJL community to engage with CCC throughout CCC’s forest development. Comments can be submitted to: coopercreek@porcupinewood.com


Submitted by:

Bill Kestell, RPF. Cooper Creek Cedar Ltd

Woodlands Manager

Observations from Peter Jordan

Some observations on CCC’s update of March 25, and landslide hazards on the AJL face

 On March 25, Bill Kestell posted an update on behalf of Cooper Creek Cedar, summarizing the meeting that was held on March 13 with several geotechnical specialists, including myself. I would like to add a few observations on this meeting, and on the terrain stability issues in the Argenta – Johnson’s Landing area.

At the meeting, Chris Perdue, professional geoscientist who is consulting for CCC, gave. a presentation about his investigation of some factors that may have contributed to the 2012 Johnsons Landing landslide. In particular, he made the point that metamorphism* near the edge of the Fry Creek batholith* may have weakened the sedimentary rocks in the Gar Creek area, and made them more prone to failure. This is a reasonable hypothesis, and there is evidence of a number of ancient bedrock failures immediately south and east of the 2012 landslide. This zone of metamorphism is probably unique to the areas close to the batholith. On this point, the geoscientits s at the meeting agreed.

In our 2013 report on the Johnsons Landing landslide, of which I was one of the authors, we suggested that gradual movement of the nearby bedrock failures may have deformed the deep glacial deposits at the landslide source, and weakened them over time. This may have been one of the factors contributing to the 2012 landslide. (Two things we should keep in mind are: the 2012 landslide originated in glacial deposits, not bedrock; and the ancient bedrock failures in the area are very slow-moving, and as far as we know, none of them have produced a large rapid rockslide.)

In our report, we discussed several other factors which may have contributed to the 2012 landslide

. These include:

-the springs which are present at the landslide source, and which had increased in discharge before the landslide;

-karst* aquifers* in the marble* beds in the underlying bedrock, which may have fed water from nearby higher-elevation drainage basins to the springs;

-the record high rainfall in the preceding month, followed by a week of rapid snowmeltat higher elevations – these undoubtedly contributed to an unusually high groundwater level which was the ultimate cause of the landslide.


At our meeting, and in CCC’s March 25 update, the question was raised about whether or not the geological features that may have contributed to the 2012 landslide are unique to the Gar Creek area, or whether they are present across the entire AJL face.

We agreed that the zone of abundant bedrock failures near the contact with the batholith is probably limited to the Gar Creek – Kootenay Joe Creek area. However, we also discussed the fact that several other contributing geological factors are found across the entire AJL face. These include karst bedrock units, abundant springs, glacial deposits which include deep kame* features, the weak metasedimentary* rocks which are typical of the west slope of the Purcell Mountains, and the north-south strike* and westerly dip* of the bedrock which is fairly consistent along the face. It is also notable that there are several other large areas of apparent slow bedrock failure between Hamill Creek and Kootenay Joe Creek, which are unrelated to the Fry Creek batholith.

Another subject that was discussed at the meeting is whether the risk of very largelandslides such as the 2012 Johnsons Landing landslide is relevant to terrain stability issues associated with possible forest development in the area. Probably it is not. The 2012 landslide was an exceptionally rare event and is probably unique. It is unlikely that forest development would contribute to the likelihood of such a large landslide.

However, forest development does contribute to the risk of smaller landslides (and other geomorphic and hydrologic hazards such as erosion, stream sedimentation, and water quality impacts) in this area, as it does throughout the Kootenays and elsewhere. Forest development, especially road construction, substantially increases the likelihood of landslides. Most commonly, these are relatively small (less than a few thousand cubic metres) compared to the Johnsons Landing landslide (300,000 cubic metres). They can, in populated areas, present a risk to public safety and to property, as well as environmental impacts. Therefore, terrain stability mapping and assessments are important before any forest development or other industrial activity in the Argenta -Johnsons Landing area, as they are everywhere. Equally important is the principle that these assessments should contribute to decisions about how and where forest development is planned, and whether it should take place at all.

Peter Jordan, P.Geo., Ph.D.

* Some technical geological terms are explained here.

– metamorphism- changes to rock caused by heat and pressure

– batholith- a large intrusion of granite into older rocks (which in this case are sedimentary rocks of the Lardeau Group, Hamill Creek Group, Horsethief Creek Group, and Purcell Group)

– karst- features such as caves, sinkholes, springs, and underground stream courses, due to solution of rocks such as limestone marble – recrystallized limestone

– aquifer– a porous, permeable, underground formation which conveys groundwater

– kame – a thick deposit of glacial till and other sediments (glaciofluvial and glaciolacustrine), commonly forming terraces along the sides of valleys formerly occupied by glaciers (these deposits are especially prone to landslides)

– metasedimentary rocks– sedimentary rocks which have been altered by metamorphism (in this area,typically schist, phyllite, slate, quartzite, and marble)

– strike and dip- the orientation of sedimentary rocks (strike is the compass direction, dip is the angle ofinclination)




Do You Want a More Open Government?

See two links below: One to an article from TheTyee, and the second a link to the BC Government page regarding information access and privacy:




CCC update March 25

March 25, 2018

For the past twelve months Cooper Creek Cedar Ltd (CCC) has been receiving comments from the Argenta-Johnsons Landing (AJL) community expressing a resounding concern that the geological landform local to the GAR Ck slide is consistent across the Purcell Mountains, which includes the AJL face unit and drainages.  The community is concerned that any forest development will exacerbate the possibility of initiating a landslide(s) similar to the magnitude of the GAR Ck slide that would result in similar devastation to property and loss of life.  CCC acknowledges that, if the geological landform was consistent across the AJL face, there is reason to be very concerned about the community’s safety.

However; as a result of Chris Perdue’s work – field work, reviewing geological, terrain and LiDAR maps, reading terrain reports of the AJL area – CCC and Chris contend that the geological landform that is around the GAR Ck slide is specific to the slide area, that the specific landform was a significant contributing factor to the slide, and this specific landform is not consistent across the Purcell Mountain Range, which includes the AJL face unit.

Cooper Creek Cedar felt it very important to address this concern and subsequently invited a group of professional terrain specialists, Ministry of Forests, Lands & Natural Resource Operations (MFLNRO) and the RDCK to meet to discuss whether the geological landform local to the GAR Ck slide is, in fact, consistent across the AJL face unit. The meeting was held March 13, 2018, and was attended by:

  • Tara DeCourcy, RPF, District Manager, Selkirk Forest District
  • Sarah Crookshanks, M.Sc., P.Geo., Research Geomorphologist, MFLNRO
  • Peter Jordan, B.Sc., M.Sc., Ph.D., P.Geo., terrain specialist advisor to groups in AJL community
  • Greg Utzig, M.Sc., P.Ag.
  • Chris Perdue, P.Geo., Eng.L., professional geotechnical consultant for CCC
  • John Cathro, RPF, Alternate Director Area D
  • Bill Kestell, RPF, Woodland Manager, CCC
  • Craig Upper, President, CCC

(Note: the following summary of the meeting is a collaboration of the participants, predominating with input/general agreement among the four professional geotechs.)

Summarizing the meeting, there was a general consensus among the technical experts, not including the RDCK representative, that there are some unique geological features existent in the GAR Ck area that contributed to the GAR Ck slide. Those features are not present to the north across the AJL face unit/forest development area. Therefore the likelihood that a similar landslide of the magnitude of the GAR Ck slide will occur elsewhere on the AJL face unit/forest development area is significantly less than it is in the GAR Ck area. It should also be noted, it was agreed that road construction and forest development did not contribute in any way to the GAR Ck slide.

The discussion did expand to terrain stability concerns within the AJL area north of the GAR Ck slide, including the presence/concerns of potential KARST topography and general terrain instability common to the mountainous terrain within the north Kootenay Lake area. All the professionals and CCC acknowledged that all future forest development in the AJL forest development area needs to include thorough terrain stability field assessments and review of past reports and assessments. CCC clearly stated that detailed terrain stability field assessments will be carried out and that all subsequent reports will be provided to MFLNRO, Jordan & Utzig, RDCK and the community for peer reviews.

Cooper Creek Cedar will be starting to conduct on-the-ground field work in the AJL development area this season. Work will begin once the area is relatively snow free to allow access. CCC expects to begin field work as early as April/May – weather and resources dependent. The following is a proposed work schedule:

  • reconnaissance (recci) work of the area to determine harvesting & road construction possibilities. There is no definite time line for this part of the process. This process requires a significant amount of ground proofing. Cutblock and road location ribbons will be hung to identify potential development areas. These blocks/roads are not final designs at this time.
  • CCC will provide regular development maps as work progresses. CCC will also continue to encourage community engagement during this process once development areas have been identified. It is a good time for the community to field review this development work with CCC.
  • CCC expects to have identified potential cutting permit development blocks and roads by August 2018. Once there has been a potential CP developed, specific field assessments will be started – Visual Impact Assessments (Visual Impact Simulations), Terrain Stability Field Assessments (TSFA), Ungulate Winter Range, Wildlife Assessments (wildlife assessments are ongoing by a Wildlife Biologist to look at the ungulate winter range while there is snow on the ground) and other assessments as required. These assessments will be made available to the community for their review. As well, CCC has agreed to submit all assessments to the Ministry of Forests, Lands & Natural Resource Operations and the RDCK for peer review.
  • During the process of assessment completion, final CP/RP development will continue, including development of Site Plans (SP). Again there is no timeline with this process. CCC will not submit application for a Cutting Permit or Road Permit until the assessments are completed and time has been allowed for peer reviews, and the SPs completed.
  • The AJL development area is essentially defined by definite creeks. CCC will complete a Total Chance Plan on each face unit between the defined creeks. CCC will begin forest development in the Salisbury Ck area.
  • CCC will target submitting a CP/RP application for September/October 2018. But this is a “loose” date that is dependent on numerous unknown issues that may arise, including completing a thorough communication process with the community.
  • Generally, CPs/RPs takes approximately 30 days for MFLNRO approval following permit submission, but very dependent on a number of issues. However, CCC expects many of the “issues” will be addressed via peer reviews of assessments and community/CCC communication prior to CP/RP submission. Harvesting and/or road building can occur once the permits are approved.

CCC encourages the AJL community to engage with CCC throughout CCC’s forest development. Comments can be submitted to: coopercreek@porcupinewood.com

Submitted by:

Bill Kestell, RPF

Cooper Creek Cedar Ltd

Woodlands Manager