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Cumberland votes no to remove blasting restrictions

A developer in Cumberland was denied a request to remove blasting restrictions from their permit on Monday night.

Coal Valley Developers have been constructing in Cumberland since 2006, but the new rules prohibit them from blasting between April 30th and June 30th.

Cumberland’s village council approved a permit in May of 2017 that included a restriction on blasting times due to an environmental report stating that blasting may have an impact on nesting and breeding birds.

In particular, the blasting may affect the Western screech owl during nesting season.

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Cumberland village planner, Joanne Rees, presented a report recommending that the restrictions be removed.

One of the arguments in the report was that “many birds in the immediate vicinity may have been habituated to the noise”.   

Councillor Jesse Kettler said had “pretty serious concerns” about the information contained in the report Rees presented.

Councillor Roger Kishi expressed concerns that were this to be approved, there would be “no limit to the blasting that can be done.”

Council decided that if Coal Valley wants to blast, further study must be done on the Western Screech Owl and Migratory Bird Convention Act.

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