Letters: In response to critics of outfall

SookePoint developer explains his wastewater treatment plans

ighly treated wastewater was part of the plan when Silver Spray was re-zoned in 2002, well before we joined the municipality of Sooke. For years many East Sooke residents have enjoyed an unlimited water supply,  and vastly improved fire protection, because we paid to pipe water across the harbour as part of that deal.

Environmental studies that began in 2004 prove there will be no harm to the receiving environment. Since then technology has only improved. We will now be using what the United Nations Industrial Development Organization calls “State-of-the-art… an important environmental process revolution.” The California Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering rates it as “the highest ranked biological treatment system out of almost seventy technologies reviewed.”

This new wastewater treatment utility is subject to legally binding regulations, financial security and regular monitoring oversight to ensure it meets or exceeds environmental controls. The finished product is filtered so clear it looks like window glass, and we plan to re-cycle much of it for landscape irrigation in the future.

This small outfall has already been approved by the Ministry of Environment, after exhaustive study that commenced 10 years ago. All we are seeking now is a crown lease to lay the pipe along the seabed, out 1,000 feet to a pre-approved location 120’ deep. Here the flow of ocean currents is so strong that one of the study teams had a hard time keeping up with drogue floats being tracked with GPS.

This facility is required to properly serve an eco-tourism destination resort that can provide an assortment of accommodation, jobs and amenities. In addition, the US-based Center for Whale Research is opening an office at SookePoint. They care about protecting the Southern Resident Killer Whale habitat, and plan to affix hydrophones along part of the pipe to monitor whale activity and broadcast whale-song via local wifi.

The SookePoint Resort is on the SW Tip of Canada. SookePoint will attract a great number of visitors and guests. With an emphasis on a front-row oceanfront experience, eco-tourism activities and “yacht suite” accommodations, it is obviously in our best interest to vigorously protect all the sea and wildlife that surrounds us. We will do all we can to preserve it. We also have the right to live and work here.

The municipality of Sooke already has a much larger outfall in place. A 2008 report confirmed that “video footage taken where the outfall pipe terminates illustrates an environment which looks pristine.” While it may be possible to run a raw sewage line across the harbour to plug in there, why not use science and technology to eliminate that risk? On the other side of us, the Beecher Bay First Nation has a far bigger outfall already in place, presumably to serve 800 homes in the proposed new town of Spirit Bay.

Both of the marine outfalls that flank us are designed for substantially greater capacity than the SookePoint Destination Resort. And the Destination Resort will not be exposed to the same kind of risk from commercial contaminants, chemicals and storm drains that sometimes create problems for larger facilities.

It has been proven that today’s wastewater treatment plants offer a superior solution. Is there really any reason why the residents of Sooke and East Sooke’s Spirit Bay can connect to large ocean outfall pipes, while SookePoint shouldn’t have a small one?

Michael Thornton

SookePoint at

Silver Spray

Just Posted

Province funds $88.6M for two new schools in Langford by 2022

Langford gets 500-seat elementary school and a 700-seat middle school

Green New Deal meeting in Sooke part of a larger movement

Humanity has 4,000 days left before it will be too late

Premier opens playground

New Playground at École Poirier. John Horgan joined School Division 62 officials… Continue reading

Fish closure in Port Renfrew has endangered more than 40 per cent of businesses

YouTube video challenges residents to remember when election comes around

Council pursues water line extension for north Sooke

Properties affected by Highway 14 project may see water service

Oak Bay mom describes finding son ‘gone’ on first day of coroners inquest into overdose death

Jury to make recommendations based on death of Elliot Eurchuk, 16

Dash-cam video in trial of accused cop killer shows man with a gun

Footage is shown at trial of Oscar Arfmann, charged with killing Const. John Davidson of Abbotsford

Suicide confirmed in case of B.C. father who’d been missing for months

2018 disappearance sparked massive search for Ben Kilmer

Eight U.S. senators write to John Horgan over B.C. mining pollution

The dispute stems from Teck Resources’ coal mines in B.C.’s Elk Valley

Threats charge against Surrey’s Jaspal Atwal stayed

Atwal, 64, was at centre of controversy in 2018 over his attendance at prime minister’s reception in India

Anti-vaxxer Robert F. Kennedy Jr. to speak in Surrey

He’s keynote speaker at Surrey Environment and Business Awards luncheon by Surrey Board of Trade Sept. 17

Otters devour 150 trout at Kootenay hatchery

The hatchery has lost close to 150 fish in the past several months

EDITORIAL: Sooke council’s pot approach an opportunity lost

When the federal government tabled Bill 36 in September 2018, it threw… Continue reading

Green New Deal meeting in Sooke part of a larger movement

Humanity has 4,000 days left before it will be too late

Most Read