Letter: Langley Township trees need to be protected

Michelle Connerty believes needs to make 'some quick and real changes to protect our beautiful Township, its trees and its wildlife.'

Dear Editor,

I was present at the Township of Langley council meeting on Monday, May 30, 2016.

It was discussed between Petrina Arnason and staff that if “significant trees” are removed during construction either on purpose or otherwise there is no provision to fine the developer/builder/land owner. The tree(s) must be replaced, however no monetary penalty will be assessed or so I understood from the discussion.

This is my transcription of the meeting from the video, which is on the TOL website:

Rezoning Application No. 100436

Kooner / 3492 205 Street

Bylaw No. 5204

Bylaw No. 5219

Motion by: Whitmarsh

Seconded by: Fox

Arnason: I noticed in the staff report there are some significant trees that have been protected by a restrictive covenant.  I’m wondering if staff could please advise whether or not we’ve come up with any kind of penalty for removal, premature removal of trees protected by restrictive covenant.

Staff: Your Worship, the penalties are currently as outlined in the Subdivision Development Servicing Bylaw which requires an increase in the number of trees that have to be replanted, based on the number of trees that have been prematurely removed. Again subject to the application proceeding to that stage.

Arnason: Because I had in the past asked for a staff report having a pecuniary amount or a fine attached to that.

Staff: That’s correct, your Worship. Those relate to development permits, and I believe in the case of Gloucester in the one that Councillor Arnason is referencing.

Arnason: That’s right.

Staff: In this case the proponents, the applicant, will have to comply with the provisions of the Subdivision Development Servicing Bylaw that requires protection of those trees. And if they are removed prematurely, there is a formula, I believe. I don’t recall what it is off the top of my head, but there is requirement for an extra number trees of trees to be planted.

Arnason: Thank you.

I, as a tax paying Citizen of the Township of Langley, am seriously offended that anyone who chooses to cut down a tree of any consequence can do so and only plant a new tree or two. I just searched though the entire Township website and could only find one single bylaw about clear cutting, and nothing else at all about trees – unbelievable.

The Township of Langley council needs to make some quick and real changes to protect our beautiful Township, its trees and its wildlife. What century are we living in? Have we learned nothing to date regarding environmental stewardship?

Surrey has an excellent tree bylaw that would be easy to apply and amend to use for Langley Township. We don’t need to reinvent the wheel.

We, as human beings, need to ensure that our planet stays healthy – trees are a large part of that equation not only for CO2/oxygen exchange, but also for living a livable life.

Michelle Connerty, Brookswood

Just Posted

COMMUTER ALERT: Serious pedestrian crash closes Pacific Highway

Traffic along 176th Street, 4th to 8th Avenue, is blocked while Mounties continue to investigate.

Giants owner Ron Toigo to get BC Sports Hall of Fame W.A.C. Bennett Award

Head of Langley-based hockey team to be honoured at May induction gala

UPDATED: Touching note left on Langley veteran’s windshield

A veteran hopes the writers of a note know how much he was touched by their kind words. They do.

VIDEO: Young Langley boy uses his grief to help other kids suffering loss

Thursday Langley Hospice hosts its Paint the Town Blue campaign to spotlight child bereavement.

LETTER: Canada should not be selling weapons abroad

A Langley man is critical of Canada for selling arms that are being used to kill civilians.

People flocking to Vancouver Island city to see hundreds of sea lions

Each year the combination of Steller and California sea lions take over Cowichan Bay

Protesters confront Environment Minister in B.C.

Protesters wanting more for killer whales confront Catherine McKenna

Humans reshaping evolutionary history of species around the globe: paper

University of British Columbia researcher had the paper published in the Proceedings of the Royal Society

Toronto ‘carding’ activist Desmond Cole stopped by police in Vancouver

Cole says his experience reveals what daily life is like for black and Indigenous residents

Tubing, skating, light display part of new winter festival in Vancouver

Set to open Nov. 23, the six-week festival will take over Vancouver’s Concord Pacific Centre

Commercial trucks banned from left lane of Coquihalla

B.C.’s Ministry of Transportation has introduced a new program that hopes to prevent accidents and closures on the Coquihalla Highway.

B.C. on track to record same number of overdose deaths as last year

128 people died of overdoses in September, bringing the total to more than 1,100 so far in 2018

B.C. firefighters rescue horse stuck in mud

‘It happens more often than you’d think,’ says deputy chief

Regulatory confusion over ‘toxic’ stink near Abbotsford school

Officials sniffing out which regulators responsible for enforcing compliance at neighbouring property

Most Read