The noon-hour phone-in program on C.B.C. Radion yesterday was on the approval of the summer use plan for Norquay. Listening to the comments phoned or e-mailed in gave some hope for support for ecological integrity among the public despite the current park stand (yeah, I know, the policy says otherwise).

About two-thirds of the comments were against the approval of the plan. Almost all were from well-informed people – if this is a representative sample of the AB population it says good things. The need for protection, reductions in park budgets, contempt for the amusement park approach ,the availability of all these “opportunities” in other locations, and the urgency of protecting wild spaces and species were all expressed by this group. There were opposing views. The woman who started off the call-ins had, I guess you could call it, a realistic comment. She said she was opposed to the plan but now it has been approved she will be making use of them. One woman staggered me by describing the Leagacy Trail as in a wildlife corridor. Perhaps she has not noticed the fence? She sounded intelligent so I thinking it was AMPPE-speak. Another speaker was of the opinion that there were so many mountain peaks that summer use at Norquay would make no difference. Obviously, he was not taking into account how many of those peaks are outside protected areas and can be hunted, logged and otherwise exploited nor did he consider the montane ecological region at Norquay and elsewhere.

One comment that sticks in my mind and will, perhaps in yours, was that once the genie is out of the bottle . . . .

Perry Davis