Blog

01 Nov
0

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
0

We Are TLC

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29 Oct
0

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
0

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.

 

Sincerely,

Mike Petersen
Executive Director

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23 Oct
0

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
0

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: www.facebook.com/events/1979887475424590/

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12 Oct
0

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: www.facebook.com/events/334982273944714/

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09 Oct
0

PacWest Silicon Smelter Comment Period is Open

From Ecology: PacWest Silicon Smelter Environmental Impact Statement Scoping Public Comment Period – September 11, 2018 – October 26, 2018

PacWest Silicon is proposing to build a smelter near the city of Newport in Pend Oreille County. The manufacturing process converts quartz rock (supplied by the company HiTest Sand) into silicon metal that can be used in aluminum, silicone polymer, and polysilicon production.

Ecology has determined that this project may have significant impacts on the environment and will be conducting a full State Environmental Policy Act review of these impacts. A report called an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) will be developed to detail the findings. As the lead agency for the environmental review, Ecology will develop the EIS to study impacts of the project on the surrounding environment. The first step in this process is to collect information from the public about what should be included in the environmental review, also called the scope.
We are looking for information about what we should study and how we should study it.

View more information about the PacWest project, including project documents and answers to Frequently Asked Questions.

Use the WA Department of Ecology online comment form.
———————————————————————————
Preliminary comments from The Lands Council:
Residents of 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 in the scoping for this project.

1. The use of coal from Kentucky is one option for providing the carbon needed in the smelting process. We believe there are better options that would substantially reduce the sulfur dioxide. One of those options would be to use locally produced biochar. Biochar, which is activated carbon, can be produced from wood or agricultural waste products, such as slash piles, milling residue, crop residue and other plant materials. It would be much lower in sulfur content, create jobs locally and would also avoid transportation costs and diesel emissions. We ask that the feasibility of this option be analyzed.
2. Power plants, smelters, industrial furnaces, waste-to-energy plants, etc all release nitrous oxides. Filters and scrubbers can eliminate much of this nitrous oxide, which like sulfur dioxide can lead to acid rain. We ask that a thorough analysis of reducing the nitrous oxides be analyzed and that state of the art nitrous oxide emission reduction be part of the plan. We also would like other expected air emissions be addressed, including PM2.5 emissions.
3. The carbon dioxide emissions are very large. A claim is made that the silicon that was produced would be used in solar panels. Is there any guarantee that this would actually occur, and if so, what commitment is PacWest making?

We understand that the proposed location of the smelter moved from one controversial site to another. Is the current siting a given or will Ecology look at other areas in Pend Oreille County, such as north of Metaline Falls?

There have been claims about water usage and the source of that water. Please offer an accurate assessment of the water issue.

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05 Oct
0

Bears, Cougars, and Wolves

Join Western Wildlife Outreach and The Lands Council for an evening exploring the natural history and current status of Washington’s bears, cougars and wolves. Learn how to safely recreate in the backcountry.

Friday, October 12th at 6:00 pm at REI Spokane.

Find more information here: www.rei.com/event/bears-cougars-and-wolves/spokane/221622

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04 Oct
0

Vote Yes on Initiative 1631


Building a cleaner future together
Our state has a legacy of protecting the home we all share: prioritizing our health and a world-class economy. We enjoy that quality of life because we invest in our communities.
But we know if we don’t act now, the threat of pollution will only get worse and cause more harm to our communities and our kids’ health. I-1631 is a practical first step to ensure clean air and clean water for everyone in Washington and gives us the chance to pass on a healthier state to the next generation.

Who Supports I-1631?
After years of work, our coalition is led and supported by over 250 organizations, representing scientists, environmental and clean-energy advocates, working families, communities of color, health professionals, businesses, faith leaders, and tribal nations who have come together to pass this practical solution

What Does I-1631 Do?
As Washingtonians we all do our part to keep our state clean. But right now the largest polluters can pollute for free while the rest of us pay the costs. I-1631 would put a fee on the state’s largest polluters, like the oil industry and utilities that have not switched over to clean-energy, and invest in protecting our air and water and building new clean-energy infrastructure across the state. We know with this initiative, we can protect our health, build new good paying jobs, and ensure a cleaner future for the next generation.

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