SMITH CREEK ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT STUDY (EIS)
What is the purpose of an EIS?
- To identify the environmental risks associated with a development project – in this case, the proposed Three Sisters Mountain Village (TSMV) Smith Creek Area Structure Plan (ASP);
- To identify mitigation strategies to reduce and/or eliminate the identified risks associated with the project;
- To provide an assessment of what could happen after mitigation strategies are put into place.
The EIS also includes a study of the cumulative effects of the proposed Smith Creek ASP combined with past, present and future developments.
What is the EIS’s role in the planning process, specific to TSMV?
The EIS is used to inform Council about the identified risks and mitigation strategies in order for Council to make an informed decision in regards to the approval of the Smith Creek ASP. The EIS does not inform the Province’s decision about the proposed wildlife corridor, but rather provides Town Council with sufficient information in order to make an informed decision on the application.
To summarize, how is TSMV planning on addressing the risks identified within the EIS?
There have been a number of risks identified within the EIS ranging from neutral to slightly positive to slightly negative. The risks within the EIS have been overestimated in order to be precautionary. It is considered to be best practice to overestimate risks when uncertainty is present – e.g., overestimating the footprint size to address uncertainty about precise footprint locations. It is recognized that the Project creates environmental risks and TSMV in partnership with the Town and other partners will be implementing specific mitigation strategies such as fencing, attractant management, off-leash dog parks and recreational trails, education and an adaptive management program. An adaptive management programs allows for uncertainties around key risks to be monitored during project implementation and mitigations to be re-assessed as required.
Community dialogue about TSMV is important and we encourage you to get involved in the conversation. If you have a question or concern not addressed here, please contact us directly and we would be happy to provide you with the information we have.