To The Editor,

Keen to contact you @ The Review – as per your call for opinion vis-à-vis Action Champlain seeking $200,000 from Champlain Township in order to fight the endemic threat of Colacem implanting itself here and forever as a large-scale heavy industry.

For anyone who was present during the well-attended public meetings set up by Action Champlain in L’Orignal and Vankleek Hill in August 2016 and May 2017 respectively (500 persons and more each), they will without a doubt understand the endless issues surrounding a potential implementation of such an imposing Colacem Cement Plant in our backyard, Champlain Township, UCPR.

Colacem remains a burning topic of great public concern as per its controversial nature: Colacem is a heavy industry that poses a definite threat to the general health, to our environment and economy (road deterioration, increase of dust & noise, air and water contamination = unattractive region). So yes, it is high priority that Champlain Township dedicates the requested $200,000 in support of a brighter future even if this implies that all taxpayers help Action Champlain prepare its case for the OMB: “One for all, all for one.”

For those who are still in the dark, here are some of the negative impacts this cement plant could have on our surrounding land, family and friends, already well described in published articles (refer also to or for immediate resources):

  • Endangering the long-term health of UCPR population through poorer air quality (invisible particles and foul-smelling odors which causes tangible health hazard, all stemming from the 410-foot-high cement plant chimney).
  • Water sources being affected by cement plant pollutants (detriment of water table, ground water and the Ottawa River, now proclaimed Heritage River since 2016).
  • Surrounding UCPR agricultural lands will suffer detrimental crops and weaker livestock as per above degradation.
  • Increased heavy truck traffic on local roads, linking Grenville-sur-la-Rouge, L’Orignal (on County Road 17) and Montreal where the cement is loaded onto cargo ships for international markets.

The OMB hearings, in September 2018, will determine our lifestyle for generations to come. We must prevent this social, environmental and political scandal from ever happening. Remaining very hopeful that our Champlain Township mayor, Mr. Barton will make the right decision to support Action Champlain. Why then not foresee beneficial economical alternative projects, agricultural green technologies for example, which go hand-in-hand with the vital and inspired UCPR region.

Gabriel D. Doucet

Editor’s Note: The Review shared a link to a previous letter to the editor on Facebook, in which the letter-writer was opposed to having Champlain Township give $200,000 to Action Champlain to prepare its appeal case to be heard by the OMB.
Also: Champlain councillors will decide as a whole whether or not to support Action Champlain with a financial contribution; the decision is not that of the mayor alone.