Tree removal was an ‘arboreal slaughter’

Who knew that in order to be green, the green would have to go

It was with rose-coloured glasses that my spouse and I purchased our first home in Langford. Sure, we were buying a new house in what used to be lush forest, but at least we were building Green. With a capital G. I told all my friends how progressive and green we were with our geothermal. I was filled with pride that my new community was so committed to being environmentally friendly they would take a risk on something like geothermal technology. Gosh, it felt good to be green.

But who knew that in order to be green, the green would have to go.

Even the new school they were going to build beside us was going to be green. They said they’re committed to making sure there is as little impact on the environment as they can manage. Some trees would have to go, but every effort was going to be made to save as many as possible.

Sometimes, safety trumps environment, especially with a school. But as I sit here, watching a backhoe drag away the corpses of decades-old trees, I can see this is a massacre. A veritable arboreal slaughter. I came home to see a tangle of trunks and greenery where mighty trees once towered. They had left two small trees at the very edge, and I felt a small measure of relief. Surely these would stay. But as I arrived home from work the next day, they were gone.

How far is this going to go? How much of our ecological heritage are we going to raze in the name of progress? I urge the City of Langford to stop the careless destruction of trees on the site of the new Belmont secondary school before we’re left with nothing but an empty lot and a vague memory that we used to be green instead of Green.

Aislinn Joiner

 

Langford