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June 2007

Conservation Connection June 2007

Conservation Connection - October 2006


NOTE: All links have been removed from this archived newsletter. For more information on any topics mentioned, please use our website Search bar above.


In this issue:

  • Conservation evening
  • Skiers and wildlife
  • Logging ramp-up
  • Prairie shell-game

auction friends

Friends enjoy last year's auction.
Photo: Curt Gerston

Celebrate Summer with Conservation Northwest

There's still time to register for our 4th annual Hope for a Wild Future benefit auction this Thursday at the Woodland Park Zoo. Let us take you on a journey through the incredible Columbia Highlands and other key landscapes we are working to protect. You'll also meet the winners of the I-90 "Bridging Futures III" art contest and learn about successes for wildlife in the I-90 corridor.

While the kids enjoy a private tour of the Zoo and dinner in the Zoomazium with zoo staff and Conservation Northwest volunteers, you'll enjoy good food, warm conversation, and other community committed to conservation. Bid on silent and live auction items, including unique experiences, weekend getaways, Northwest wines, and more!




Winning I-90 Wildlife Bridges artwork

Common-ground agreement protects old growth and wildlife corridors while allowing ski area expansion.


Leaving a Place for Wildlife near Snoqualmie Pass

In a positive move for Cascades wildlife, the Sierra Club, Conservation Northwest, Alpine Lakes Protection Society, and Ski Lifts, Inc., operator of The Summit at Snoqualmie, have agreed on a new plan for the ski area at Snoqualmie Pass. The common-ground alternative rises from more than a year's worth of citizen collaboration. The result is a plan that protects key wildlife habitat while allowing the ski area to grow. The agreement helps protect the forests of Hyak Creek and the only upper elevation wildlife connection remaining between the North and Central Cascades.

In other I-90 wildlife news, the third annual I-90 Bridging Futures competition celebrates a future for wildlife bridges and healthy wildlife with winning artwork from gradeschoolers Brenda of Wenatchee and Sandra of Tacoma, who tied for first place with their drawings. Both will be honored at our annual "Hope for a Wild Future" auction.


northern spotted owl

Juvenile northern spotted owl. The owls need the open understory of old-growth forests.
Photo: Grant Wiegert





Like Disco and Polyester Pants, Old Growth Logging Is Out of Style

It's like the return of a bad dream: The Bush administration, under the guise of owl "recovery," is trying to kickstart an old-growth logging program, despite the fact that almost 90% of the region's ancient forests have already been lost to logging and other development. First, the US Fish and Wildlife Service, under the direction of political operatives, released a draft "recovery" plan for the imperiled northern spotted owl (a gentle bird that lives in old-growth forests), laying the groundwork for eliminating old-growth reserves across the Pacific Northwest. Then, just last week, they proposed to cut 1.5 million acres (about 25%) from habitat determined to be critical to the survival and recovery of owls.

People in the Northwest care passionately about protecting ancient forests and the owls and other wildlife that depend on them. Tell the Bush administration that old-growth logging is out of style, that their "recovery" plan is not sufficient, and that you want sound science, not politics, to direct endangered species conservation efforts. To genuinely help the spotted owl recover, all remaining mature and old-growth forest habitat must be protected. Agency efforts should focus on thinning young, dense second-growth forests instead.



South Puget Sound oak woodland prairie

Last minute deal puts the Cross-Base Highway back before voters this fall.
Photo: Cross-Base Highway Coalition





Cross-Base Highway Back on Ballot

The Cross-Base Highway, if built, would destroy one of the last and best remaining south Puget Sound prairies, believed to be possibly the rarest habitat in North America. As we last reported, the highway was first removed from a roads package going before voters this fall. But in a last minute agreement between Pierce County officials and local conservation groups, the highway was added back into the regional transit plan.

Conservation Northwest did not sign onto this compromise package because the agreement reached does not identify a viable alternative to building the highway across the prairie. The compromise merely defers the debate and decision over the highway by several years, when a transportation solution and viable alternative exists today. Conservation Northwest believes such a delay is an irresponsible waste of taxpayer time and money. In the meantime, we are moving forward with litigation over the highway proposal.




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