To preserve and protect

Dear Editor:

Oldtimers will talk about “section 37,” which as children we called the “ole road. These surveyed but undeveloped road allowances are ribbons of habitat that are 66.66 feet wide by a mile long, the remnants of the last public common resources.

When lumber was sawed or if firewood were needed, often a tree or two would be supplied from section 37. Women used these commons as well, for berry picking and the many medicinal plants that were used to treat the various ailments of the pioneer days.

Today, Ponoka County is one of the largest landowners in the county as these ole roads fall within their domain. The duty to preserve and protect them is the obligation of our society. These undeveloped road allowances are not the property of the neighbouring farmers but a public resource to be maintained by county council for the use of present and future generations.

Ecologically speaking, the diversity of plants and animals and the connectivity that we are afforded from the existence of these road allowances, coupled with the corridors for the movement and dispersal of animals, enhances the gene pool of all.

Wayne Ungstad