Saturday, January 09, 2010

Podunk Below the Masthead, January 8, 2009

The quest for the time capsule continues, lumps of Coal for the harbour for after Christmas and Nathan Cullen weighs in on full body scanners, all part of the Friday news review.

Daily News, front page, headline story
UBC STUDENT HOPES TO BE FINDING THE TIME --The continuing adventures of Indiana Eso capture the front page of the daily, as Friday's story in the Daily, follows the introduction of the item of interest in the Northern View on Wednesday. In the Daily's capsule of events, we gain some more background on the plans of Rob Eso a UBC Phd student at the Geophysics department, as he prepares to devote some of his time and efforts in tracking down the city's wayward time capsule.

Coal was dumped in more than the hold of a ship earlier this week, as a significant amount of coal was spilled into the water off Ridley Terminals during the loading process. The incident is currently under investigation by federal officials. Ridley Terminals chairman Bud Smith is planning on having some discussions with Peace River coal from where the shipment came from, it is the opinion of Ridley officials than much of this shipment was of poor quality which could have contributed to the loading difficulties.

The city has a new Crime Prevention and media relations officer on the beat, as Constable Erin Stevenson takes up the duties that had been left vacant for a number of months due to staff transfers. Among some of the plans for the new year, an enhanced role for the auxiliary program and perhaps the re-launching of the COPS program which has local citizens out on the streets serving as eyes and ears on any troublesome situations.

The Daily catches up with a court decision of last year which impacted on the Lax Kw'alaams, at that time as we outlined on the blog, the Lax Kw'alaams received a ruling from the BC Court of Appeal rejecting their quest for aboriginal title over commercial fishing. The Daily's story focuses on what may come next from that decision, seeking out comments from the BC Fisheries Survival coalition and NDP MP Nathan Cullen as to what the next course of action for the Lax Kw'alaams may be.

The sports section featured Hazelton's bid to repeat the success of Terrace in the Hockeyville competition, as well the paper provided some background on this years Coy Cup championships, which will see the CIHL champion have to travel to Powell River for the 2010 championship.

(Archive for Daily News Articles for January 8, 2010)

The Northern View
Body scanners do more to soothe fears than stop terrorists, says MP -- Nathan Cullen, the NDP MP for Skeena- Bulkley Valley offers up his thoughts on the introduction of full body scanners at Canadian airports (see article here)

CFTK TV 7 News
Eurocan Closure Countdown -- The final days for Eurocan's Kitimat operations are quickly coming up, with the final shift of production set for January 21st. As that day beckons, there are still developments on the proposed employee buyout plans, with a feasibility study perhaps set to begin on Monday (see article here)

CFTK TV 7 News
North Coast Child Care Centre asked to pay $1000 more in rent -- A raise in the rent could spell the end of child care in Westview, as the Westview Child Care Centre Society ponders its options in the wake of a 1000 dollar increase on their current rent of 500 dollars a month on their facility (see article here)

Sahar Nassimdoost video report

Queen Charlotte Islands Observer
Volleyball team disappointed with BC Ferries response to rough trip concerns -- The ill fated journey of the Northern Adventure in November is still making waves for BC Ferries, as some Island residents express their disappointment in the Ferry Corporations response to the abandoned sailing of November 22nd (see article here)

CBC News British Columbia, Daybreak North
While they may be back at work in the studios of Daybreak North, no new content has been posted to their website so far in 2010, Daybreak is apparently awaiting new technology to deliver their content, with updates scheduled to return on January 12.

Daily News, front page headline story
UBC student hopes to be finding the time
By Monica Lamb-Yorski
The Daily News

Friday, January 8, 2009

Prince Rupert’s buried time capsule has caught the attention of the nation.

Slated to be opened on the city’s birthday on March 10, 2010, it could possibly be unearthed early February.

The time capsule has not been located thus far because no permanent marker placed was over the spot and there aren’t any records indicating its exact location.

If the capsule is still there, and was not washed away due to erosion and heavy rain since its burial in July 1971, then Rob Eso, a PhD student at UBC’s Geophysics department, thinks he should be able to find it.

“We’ll be using science to help solve a mystery,” Eso said from Vancouver Wednesday, explaining that he will be bringing two different pieces of equipment on loan from UBC to use for the search.

One is an instrument called the Geonics EM-31. The other is a magnetometer. Both are sensors. The first measures variations in electrical conductivity – the second one measures magnetic susceptibility.

“The two sensors are sensitive to two different properties and the time capsule should exhibit both,” Eso explained.

Describing the Geonics EM-31 as an “old” type of sensor, that has been around for about 20 years, Eso noted it is very commonly used for any geophysics work.

“It would be one of the very first tools we would use. It’s fast, robust and fairly easy to use,” he added.

It is about nine feet long and operated by one person and looks much like a piece of PVC pipe. One person carries it, strapped over their shoulder, placing it by the hip.

The time capsule was buried across from Prince Rupert Regional Hospital on a hill where there are totem poles.

In 1971 there was a retaining wall at the site that has since eroded.

Over the last few months City crews and volunteers have tried to figure out the capsule’s location by using old photographs of the actual burial to locate it. People have tried using metal detectors and there’ve been a few digs.

Eso’s procedure will involve laying out a grid over the area, walking and taking measurements every metre.

“I have to walk forward and be very still so I can make a map of all the readings I take,” he commented.

Unlike a metal detector, the Geonics EM-31 will collect several data at each location and from that information the mapping will mark any variations.

Eso has used the equipment in the field searching for buried metal and wires at a BC Hydro earth-filled dam.

He hasn’t worked with muskeg yet, but has used the instruments in bogs to determine differences and boundaries between fill at an industrial site and a natural bog, right in Vancouver at Camosun Bog.

Originally from Prince Rupert, and a graduate from Charles Hays Secondary School, Eso began studying at UBC in 1999, taking Geological Engineering and specializing in Applied Geophysics.

He first heard about the missing capsule when the story broke in early December and recently decided to offer his help.

“I’m excited and a little bit nervous,” Eso said. “I’ve already talked to CTV and there’ve been other media calls. It’s a little bit more of a spotlight than I anticipated, but it should be good.”
All it requires, he added, is that the capsule is still there. “If it is, I’m confident we’ll see it.”

When asked if he’s bringing any helpers, he said he hopes his friend Richard Pucci, who works for the City of Prince Rupert, will help him out.

“Captivated by the intrigue of the project, Hawk Air, a local airline servicing Prince Rupert, has agreed to transport Mr. Eso and the UBC-loaned equipment from Vancouver,” said Michael Curnes, the City of Prince Rupert’s Director of Community Services.

The capsule was the brainchild of the local Jaycees (Junior Chamber of Commerce) and filled with memorabilia. Using a propane cylinder, almost five feet long and 14 inches in diameter, the Jaycees filled it with items from the time period, including cans of salmon, catalogues, newspapers, a shoehorn and a centennial dollar.

There are also messages and predictions from Premier W.A.C. Bennet, MLA Bill Murray, MP Frank Howard and Mayor Lester included.

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