By Margaret Munro
VANCOUVER – Anacla, a First Nations village on the west coast of Vancouver Island, is moving up, heading for higher, safer ground.
A new “big house” has been built 50 metres up from the pounding surf of Pachena Bay. And there are plans to replace the 49 houses on the beach, which could be swallowed by the sea with just minutes’ notice.
It has happened before, says Tom Happynook, a hereditary chief with the Huu-ay-Aht First Nations, recalling how the village in the bay vanished in 1700, when a quake kicked up giant waves off Canada’s West Coast.
“The village was completely wiped out,” says Happynook.
Scientists say the strain is building again beneath the sea floor as enormous tectonic plates push against each other about 100 kilometres offshore. Continue reading