Project Ploughshares letter of objection to the expropriation by the federal government of the sea bed in the area of Nanoose.
17 June 1999
The Hon. Alfonso Gagliano
Minister of Public Works and Government Services
c/o Regional Director
OAS/RES Pacific Region
800 Burrard St.
Vancouver, BC V6Z 2V8
Re: FEDERAL EXPROPRIATION OF NANOOSE
Dear Mr. Gagliano,
I wish to formally register my objection to the expropriation by the federal government of the sea bed in the area of Nanoose. It is my understanding that this expropriation is being pursued because the federal government is unwilling to make a commitment to the Province of British Columbia that nuclear weapons will not be allowed into the Nanoose area at any time.
The federal government recently endorsed a recommendation by the Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs and International Trade that Canada “work to reduce the political legitimacy and value of nuclear weapons in order to contribute to the goal of their progressive reduction and eventual elimination.” Canada as a nuclear-weapons-free zone would be a significant contribution to the global effort to reduce the legitimacy of these weapons. Such a policy would require that Canada prohibit the transport of nuclear weapons into or through Canadian territory, including its territorial waters. A deliberate move by the federal government to assert that it is necessary to permit the continued transport of nuclear weapons into Canada, as this expropriation would do, would unfortunately send a clear signal that possession of these weapons remains legitimate in the eyes of the Canadian government. This is not a signal that the Canadian government should be sending.
For this reason, we do not support the proposed expropriation.