08/16/2012 11:23 EDT | Updated 10/16/2012 05:12 EDT

Going Coastal: Introducing HuffPost British Columbia

I'm delighted to announce the launch of HuffPost British Columbia, which joins the growing HuffPost Canada family today along with HuffPost Alberta. Like the province itself, HuffPost British Columbia will have a distinct personality and its own way of approaching the world. The site will bring HuffPost's signature mix of news, blogging, community, and social engagement to British Columbia. With our editors' unmatched local expertise, HuffPost British Columbia will tell the stories that need to be told -- and, just as importantly, it will help British Columbians tell their stories themselves.

We'll be putting the spotlight on the issues that get to the heart of British Columbia's identity, and those that will decide its future: the Northern Gateway pipeline and its potential effects on British Columbia's environment and First Nations lands; the upcoming provincial election; and the ongoing government workers' strikes. HuffPost British Columbia will celebrate the province's natural beauty and environmentalist tradition, as well as the products of its multicultural heritage -- the food, music, festivals, and traditions that define the region.

HuffPost British Columbia's news editor is Andree Lau, a native of the province who recently worked as a television reporter for the CBC.

HuffPost British Columbia's original reporting kicks off with Althia Raj on the controversial redrawing of federal ridings in B.C. and how it may have an impact on opposition parties; Rachel Mendleson on B.C.'s efforts to be a big player in the liquefied natural gas industry; a Q&A with Richard Rosenthal, B.C.'s independent police monitor; and a social campaign called #BetterBC, where we'll invite you to tell us how you'd improve the province.

Our lineup of launch-day bloggers includes Sarah McLachlan on how music is her church; journalist Robin Rowland on how northwestern B.C. was outlining pipeline demands long before the premier; Green Party leader Elizabeth May on key issues affecting both the First Nations and the province's environment; Kerry Sauriol on feminism and stay-at-home moms; comedian Tetsuro Shigematsu on "Everything You Wanted to Ask an Asian But Were Afraid to Ask"; and political blogger Laila Yuile on the fallacious state of politics in B.C.

So please join me in welcoming British Columbia to the HuffPost Canada family. And, as always, please use the comments section to let us know what you think.

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