LETTER: Challenging the purpose of the Right to Farm group

Ponoka County resident responds to a recent story related to a society looking at the right to farm

Dear Editor,

In response to the Right to Farm article by Ponoka News, we would like to point out some oversights and misconceptions.

First and foremost this newly formed group (Ponoka Right to Farm Society) speaks to the agenda of large confined feeding operations (CFOs), not to be confused with traditional small family farms. Land prices in this county, driven by large supply management CFOs, have escalated beyond the reach of non CFO farmers.

The AOPA (Agricultural Operation Practices Act) of 2002 is, in fact, right to farm legislation. In the ensuing 16 years, the NRCB (Natural Resources Conservation Board) has approved virtually every CFO application despite objections from adjacent landowners. This leads to disputes over water usage, deforestation, spreading of manure, damage to county roads and quality of life.

It has become apparent that there are serious gaps in this provincial legislation. For example, the NRCB, when considering a new application does not consider the number of CFOs already in the area or the devaluation of adjoining properties

In light of past experience with the NRCB we have lost trust in its abilities to protect our natural resources and to responsibly control the growth of CFOS. The right to farm has become the right to harm.

In reaction to this, Ponoka County has come up with a reasonable plan to protect the rights of everyone.

Existing CFOs in two proposed exclusion zones can continue their operations and can expand, however, new CFOs will not be allowed in those areas.

The outcry demonstrated by many CFO owners at Ponoka County’s informational meeting of Aug. 13 indicated they may be unwilling to compromise or consider the view of others.

They hold the view that acreage owners and non CFO farmers are in their way. It is our view that we need the protection provided by the proposed Area Structure Plans.

From Deb MacLeod and Rick Wyrozub

Just Posted

Rural crime task force results released at Agri-Trade luncheon

Report cites problems with police not being able to keep up with crime and justice system issues

PHOTO: Ponoka’s St. Augustine JV girls win volleyball league

The team had a great finals winning in two sets in Ponoka

Ponoka’s annual holiday gala, fundraiser just days away

2018 Festival of Trees in support of operations at the Ponoka hospital set for Nov. 15 to 17

Ponoka’s senior Broncs lost a tough consolation to Wetaskiwin

Penalties and errors in play affected Ponoka, which ended up deflating the team’s momentum

Woman in theft of CN truck from Ponoka pleads guilty

Sentencing not set as the woman heads into intensive one year drug treatment program

VIDEO: Marvel Comics’ Stan Lee dies

Marvel co-creator was well-known for making cameo appearances in superhero movies

VIDEO: Newcomer kids see first Canadian snowfall

Children arrived in Canada with their mother and two siblings last week from Eritrea

Feds dropped ball with WWI anniversary tributes: historians

Wrote one historian: ‘Other than the Vimy Ridge celebration … I think they have done a very bad job’

Sides ‘far apart’ in Canada Post talks despite mediation, says union

The lack of a breakthrough means rotating strikes will resume Tuesday

Feds’ appeal of solitary confinement decision in B.C. to be heard

Judge ruled in January that indefinite such confinement is unconstitutional, causes permanent harm

Nunavut urges new plan to deal with too many polar bears

Territory recommends a proposal that contradicts much of conventional scientific thinking

Tentative deal reached in NHL concussion lawsuit

More than 100 former players accused the league of failing to better prevent head trauma

Grim search for more fire victims; 31 dead across California

More than 8,000 firefighters battled wildfires that scorched at least 1,040 square kilometres

Politicians need to do better on social media, Trudeau says

Prime minister suggests at conference in Paris some are trying to use technology to polarize voters

Most Read