Friday, March 31, 2006

Opposition demands action to protect people from wolves

In response to a CBC report about a man apparently killed by wolves, the Saskatchewan Party is calling on the provincial government to take action to prevent it from happening again.

And a party critic is focusing on the problem of unregulated garbage dumps in the province's north.
Kenton Carnegie of Oshawa, Ont., died in November 2005 at Points North Landing, about 750 kilometres northeast of Saskatoon. Although the RCMP said at the time it appeared he was killed by wolves, the government hasn't released its findings. Earlier this month, CBC reported there was an unregulated and unfenced dump on Crown land at the mining supply camp. Government officials and area residents have expressed concerns that the dump has been attracting wolves.

Several wolves were seen approaching humans at Points North Landing in the days before Carnegie died. On Thursday in the legislature, Opposition MLA Glen Hart quoted from the CBC report, including an interview with Carnegie's father Kim in which he said he was angry about what he had learned. Carnegie also raised the possibility the tragedy could have been prevented.

"My worst case scenario is that his life, and his death are going to go unnoticed and nothing is going to change, and that would be a waste," Kim Carnegie told CBC.

Hart demanded to know from Environment Minister John Nilson why the government isn't making sure northern dumps are properly regulated. "Why is the minister not protecting people," Hart said. "Why won't he put policies in place that deal with garbage dumps on Crown land?"

Nilson said there are many unregulated dumps in the north and it's not easy bringing them all under compliance. "We are going to a system of making sure they have permits," Nilson said. On the other hand, Nilson said, there are realities of life in the northern wilderness and people have to be aware of them. "It can be quite dangerous," he said. Nilson also said companies operating in the north must adopt wildlife management plans.

Carnegie's death is believed to be the first case in North America where a human was killed by wild wolves in a natural setting. However, the province has not confirmed that. The chief coroner is preparing a report on the incident.

  • Canadian Broadcasting Corporation
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