14 Feb

Support the Oil Spill Prevention Act

Oil spills threaten Washington’s coast every day, putting coastal jobs, and our cultural heritage at risk.  Also at risk, our endangered Southern Resident Orca. Washington can pass oil spill prevention legislation this session modernizing safeguards and protecting our environment, economy, and endangered orcas from the devastation of an oil spill.

Call on the legislature to protect our state from the threat of a catastrophic oil spill in our waters!


I am urging you to support SB 5578/HB 1578 Oil Spill Prevention Act and to vote for strong oil spill prevention measures this session.

Our waters support the life and natural beauty of our state and bolster our economy. Every day, the risk of oil spills threaten Washington’s coastal fishing, tourism and recreation economies, based in a world-class marine ecosystem, and boosted by our endangered Southern Resident Orca.

Washington’s oil spill prevention program has not kept pace with increased risk arising from under-regulated barges and smaller tankers being used to transport oil.  The type of oil moving through the state has also changed. Heavy, sinking oils are being carried through our coastal waters by tug and tank barges, vessels which do not operate with the same safety regulations as oil tankers.

We need modernized safeguards that address all vessels carrying crude oil through Washington’s coastal waters to protect our communities and environment we depend on from a major oil spill.

All it takes is one catastrophic oil spill to cause  irreparable, irreversible damage to our environment.

I am in full support of HB 1578 and SB 5578.  I am asking to to support  strong and reasonable oil spill prevention measures.  The time is now.  Tomorrow may be too late.

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24 Jan

2019 Backcountry Film Festival


backcountry film festival poster

It’s that time of year again! Spokane area winter enthusiasts, come enjoy an evening with friends as we celebrate winter and human-powered adventure at the Winter Wildlands Alliance 14th annual Backcountry Film Festival, Thursday January 31st at Gonzaga University’s Hemmingson Center Auditorium. Doors open 6:00pm. Films start at 7:00pm.

Bring a friend and come early for best seats and our raffle. Admission $12. For advance tickets go here.

Adventure, environment and climate, youth outdoors, ski culture – you’ll find it all in this award-winning lineup of ten films. Click here for the trailer. For more info about the festival and films go here.

Event hosts are: Gonzaga Oudoors, the Spokane Mountaineers, and Spokane Mountaineers Foundation. Proceeds from the local event support the Winter Wildlands Alliance and efforts for the protection of non-motorized winter recreation in the Lookout Pass-Stevens Peak Area.

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03 Jan

Kettles Map Project

Kettle Map Project

The Kettles Map Project is a cooperative team of cartographers, athletes, wildlife photographers, and guide book authors collaborating to create the first and only comprehensive map of the Kettle River Range in Ferry County, Washington. Located only two hours from Spokane, the Kettle Range is the home of solitude, sacredness, and room to roam for all types of human-powered users. Come listen to tales from the trails, learn about the area, and get excited about the new map! Bikers, hikers, birders, runners, hunters, backpackers, and skiers this is your time to learn and as questions about the work being done in this special area.

January 16th from 6:00 to 7:00 pm at REI Spokane. Sign up here:

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01 Nov

Tell Governor Inslee to Halt the Wolf Slaughter

Washington state continues to kill wolves and we need your help today to stop it.

In the past few weeks, state-sponsored marksmen killed a 5-month-old pup and its mother from the Old Profanity Territory pack, leaving behind only the father wolf and perhaps another pup. Now they plan to kill these last two surviving members of this wolf family. This pack has been decimated. Even worse, this is the fourth wolf pack the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife has destroyed on public lands.

Washington has 1.1 million cattle and only around 120 wolves. Yet, in the past six years, the department has killed 21 wolves. Of those, 17 have been killed for the same livestock owner.

Over and over, cattle are placed on public lands grazing allotments and allowed to graze near wolf den and rendezvous sites. But when conflicts arise, instead of moving the cattle, the department shoots the wolves.

Please take two minutes right now to tell Washington Gov. Jay Inslee to stop this slaughter.

Call Gov. Jay Inslee now at (360) 902-4111.
Here’s a sample script you can use:
“Hello, my name is [YOUR NAME], I live in [YOUR CITY], and am calling to urge the governor to call off the slaughter of Washington’s wolves.I’m deeply troubled that the state has killed 21 wolves in the past six years, including 17 killed and four entire packs destroyed on behalf of a single rancher. There are 1.1 million cattle in Washington, but only 120 wolves. The state should be working to protect and preserve our native wildlife rather than shooting wolves to please ranchers.

I’m counting on Governor Inslee to stop this senseless killing of wolves.”


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01 Nov

We Are TLC

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29 Oct

Caribou Rainforest: From Heartbreak to Hope

David Moskowitz is an expert wildlife tracker, photographer, and author of the new book Caribou Rainforest: From Heartbreak to Hope. Join him for a unique multimedia journey into the tragically threatened world of endangered mountain caribou, their home in the world’s largest last remaining inland temperate rainforest, and the critical human choices that will ultimately decide the fate of this stunning ecosystem.

Join David Moskowitz in discussing the failure of agencies in the U.S. and Canada to regulate industrial resource extraction effectively, honor the treaty rights of indigenous peoples, and protect the integrity of the natural systems of this region–and what we can do now to help support this critically endangered habitat. David and a small team of adventurers have been tracking down these rare creatures and documenting the stunning world they call home. Learn about the many challenges facing these beautiful creatures and globally unique ecosystem and the shifting focus of conservation efforts in face of 21st century challenges. A Q&A and book signing will follow the event. Co-hosted by The Lands Council.

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29 Oct

The Lands Council’s Comment on PacWest Smelter

October 24, 2018


Grant Pfeifer
Eastern Regional Director
Washington Department of Ecology
4601 N. Monroe

Dear Director Pfeifer,

The Lands Council would like to provide comments on the proposed PacWest Silicon Smelter, during the scoping period. We are incorporating our letter of March 14, 2018, which is Appendix 1, which encouraged more attention to air-shed modelling and data capturing.

In addition, we request a thorough analysis of the air emissions from the smelter and alternatives to the proposed design.

Citizens in Pend Oreille and Bonner Counties are rightfully concerned about the emissions that might come from the facility, including sulfur dioxide, nitrous oxides, carbon dioxides, and particulate matter. Specifically we ask that the following be considered:

Coal from Kentucky will provide the carbon for the smelter process. We believe there are better options that would substantially reduce the sulfur dioxide. One of those options is the use of locally produced biochar. Biochar, or activated carbon, is produced from wood or agricultural waste products, such as slash piles, seed milling residue, crop residue, and other plant materials. It has a much lower sulfur content, creates jobs locally, and also avoids transportation costs and diesel emissions.

Power plants, smelters, industrial furnaces, and waste-to-energy plants all release nitrous oxides.  Filters and scrubbers can eliminate much of this nitrous oxide – which like sulfur dioxide can lead to acid rain. The silicon smelter should use a state-of-the-art air pollution control system that includes an acid scrubber to neutralize acid gases with a slurry of lime and a baghouse – this works like the filter in a vacuum cleaner, trapping particulate matter with a series of “gortex” fabric filters. Ecology should conduct a thorough analysis of reducing the nitrous and sulfur oxides. The flue gas cleaning technology, Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR), reduces nitrous oxides. We ask that SCR technology is considered. Mitigation of other expected air emissions, including PM2.5 emissions, should also be analyzed.

The carbon dioxide emissions are massive. PacWest claims that at least half of the silicon produced will be used in solar panels. What commitment is PacWest making that this would actually occur?

There are other potential contaminants, depending on the process, including mercury, carbon monoxide, etc. The analysis should look at the range and levels of pollutants and how they would be treated. How many furnaces will be at the facility and what model/type are they? If the smelter expands, projected future emissions should be analyzed.

Startup, shutdown, and intermittent use can give off very different emissions than continuous operation. What best management practices (BMPs) will be used during the smelting operation?

The proposed location of the smelter has moved from one controversial site to another. Is the current site permanent or will Ecology look at other areas in Pend Oreille County?

There have been claims about water usage and disposal. The source and quantity of that water should be addressed.

As our region makes efforts to transition away from fossil fuels to solar and wind, we must insist that renewable energy also be done in an environmentally and socially responsible manner.



Mike Petersen
Executive Director

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23 Oct

Spokane City Council Members Sign Their Support for I-1631

Spokane City Council I-1631 Spokane City Council I-1631

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23 Oct

EWU Sustainability Panel: Creating a Sustainable Future

EWU Sustainability Panel

Join our Watershed Program Director, Amanda Parrish, at EWU Sustainability‘s panel this Friday, October 26th at 1:00 pm.

Unlike most scientific panels, this will also include the economic and policy/law issues that arise when making decisions to improve sustainable living in society.

Find more information on Facebook here:

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12 Oct

Kill the Fresh Hops Pint Night

Pint Night

Support The Lands Council by having a pint at the Community Pint on Tuesday, October 23rd at 5:00 pm.

Halloween is approaching and Community Pint is celebrating by killing all the fresh hops. Come grab a pint of fresh hop beer and CP will donate $2 to TLC!

So please, join us on October 23rd!

Find more information here:

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