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October 4, 2004

 

As Reservoirs Recede, Fears of a Water Shortage Rise

Drought draining Lake Powell power generating capacity

Drought Settles In, Lake Shrinks and West's Worries Grow

Immigration issues divide environmental group

Sierra Club Jumps Into The Mutual Fund Fray

Lake Powell: Half empty or half full?

Greens count on candidate to alter party's far-out image

Lake Powell draining the result of natural forces...

Native Americans object to fast-track thinning

ALRA action alert on Yosemite

Conservationists warn against Owyhee deal

Idaho Sierra Club: we do "not oppose grazing on public lands"

Idaho Green Party corrects Sierra Club misinformation

Preserve-Grazing Swap Sought

Exit Polling Data Shows Nader Helped Gore

Sierra Club product marketing: Wal-Mart next?

Rocky Flats Nuclear Factory to Become Wildlife Refuge

Illegal redwood logging conducted under Davis administration

Palm Beach Post Editorial: Insider trading infects Nature Conservancy

Iraq's Slide Into Lawlessness Squanders Good Will for U.S.

A Matter of Life and Limb

The System That Doesn't Safeguard Travel

Anti-Terrorist List Delays Others

Environmentalists agree to release some timber sales held up over salmon

Despite apology, Dixie Chicks face growing boycott

Tarahumara Blockade Succeeds

Lake Powell at lowest point since its filling

Schwarzkopf wants to give peace a chance

"The Pianist," Polanski's latest masterpiece

Rove paints Bush as 'populist'; critics disagree

Meeting on environment stirs debate

Lost And Found

Death of a River: Recent photos of Lake Foul near Hite

CO gas contributes to Lake Powell death

Juror Talks about the Bari vs. FBI Trial

Giant leaping sturgeon take revenge

Smoky Mtn bear revolt

Scientists say a 9.0 quake hit west coast in 1700

On This Day In History: May 22, 1851 - the Mariposa Indian War

May 29: Gleick to Speak on Global Water Issues and Threats to California

Drain It, Don't Maintain It!

Peabody's new propaganda video

Peabody Coal: "Tribal Empowerment Through Energy Resource Development"

DenverPost: 'Use it or lose it' rule challenged

GJDS: Activists oppose Park Service water claims

Lake Powell: Jewel of the Colorado

Lk Powell Chron: Committee seeks to remove Page mayor

Sediment problems are the "beginning of the end" for Lake Powell Reservoir

Protesters vow to disrupt Games

RM News: Colorado's outdated water laws, overuse anger conservation group

Seattle P-I: Water dispute turns uglier

WashPost: Interior's Silence on Corps Plan Questioned

Special: Dark Days on Black Mesa


=====================================================+



Date: Sunday, October 3, 2004 2:23 AM

LA Times: Drought drains Lake Powell, Lake Mead

http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-me-lakepowell3oct03,1,1333.story?coll=la-home-headlines


As Reservoirs Recede, Fears of a Water Shortage Rise

The seven states that rely on the Colorado River
confront the possibility of inadequate supplies

By Bettina Boxall, Times Staff Writer
Oct. 3, 2004


PAGE, Ariz. - Behind Glen Canyon Dam spreads a vista reincarnated. One of
the West's mightiest reservoirs is in steady retreat, the deep turquoise of
its waters replaced by the chalky white of canyon walls submerged four
decades ago.

Five years of record-breaking drought in the Colorado River basin have
drained Lake Powell of more than 60% of its water. Flows on the Colorado are
among the lowest in 500 years.

Downriver, Lake Mead, the biggest reservoir in North America and supplier of
water to Southern California, Arizona and Las Vegas, is little more than
half full. At Mead's northern end, the foundations of St. Thomas, a little
town demolished in the 1930s to make way for the reservoir, have reemerged.

The 1,450-mile-long river that greens 3.5 million acres of farm and range
land and helps feed the faucets of 25 million people may within a few years
lack the water to quench the West's great thirst. For the first time ever,
the seven states that rely on the Colorado are confronting the possibility
of a shortage.

"They've never had to face a shortage of this consequence," said Pat Mulroy,
head of the Southern Nevada Water Authority that supplies Las Vegas, one of
the most river-dependent cities in the Colorado basin. "When you're right up
against it and facing the possibility of inadequate supplies to
municipalities or farmers or jeopardizing recreation values, these are very
tough choices."

The states are meeting now to try to figure out how they will deal with a
shortage if the drought continues. As with everything else on the heavily
regulated Colorado, the answers will be found in a complex tangle of law and
politics.

If the law of the river was strictly followed, cuts would be made according
to a hierarchy of water rights, with Arizona, Nevada and the upper basin
states of Colorado, Wyoming and Utah taking the first hits. California,
which gets about 14% of its statewide water supply from the river, has some
of the most senior rights on the Colorado and is in a comparatively good
position.

But the states may try to avoid triggering cuts. One approach would be for
utilities to buy water from farmers and growers - who use 80% of the river's
water - and send it to cities.

"With voluntary transfers you can easily take care of the big urban needs in
the lower basin with compensation to farmers, and you don't have to dry up
agriculture to do that," said Robert Johnson, the lower Colorado regional
director for the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, which operates the dams and
reservoirs that make up the river's vast plumbing system.

"I don't want to downplay the importance of the drought," he said. "But my
own opinion is we'll figure out how to deal with it."

If the states don't come up with a plan, the federal government will. "The
[Interior] secretary will be forced to take action within three years, and
potentially within two, if the states haven't solved the problems
themselves," Bennett Raley, assistant secretary for water and science for
the U.S. Department of the Interior, warned last spring.

Nowhere is the drought as dramatically evident as at Powell, one of the last
major reservoirs constructed in the West. As the water recedes, the
stunningly blue desert lake, loathed by conservationists for drowning a
majestic canyon in the mid-1960s, is disinterring its past. Glen Canyon is
reemerging, caked with white mineral salts left by the backed-up waters of
the Colorado.

At Warm Creek Bay, one of Powell's many arms, the lake's decline can be
measured by the height of the advancing green forests of salt cedar, an
invasive shrub that is quickly staking its claim to the emerging lake
bottom. The exposed mud has puckered into salt-crusted chunks, a loose
puzzle of fudge-like pieces.

The last time it was full, in 1999, the Powell reservoir extended for 186
miles upriver. It is now 145 miles long. The lake level has dropped nearly
130 feet. If it continues its downward creep, there may not be enough water
to generate hydropower in two years.

By 2007 or 2008, Powell could sink below the dam's intake tubes. At that
point, the lake would be more than three-quarters empty. Releases from the
reservoir couldn't be made until nature provided more water. This year,
nature delivered half the normal inflow. In 2002, one of the driest years
ever recorded on the Colorado, it was a quarter of the norm.

As the reservoir's levels plunge, so does hydropower production. At Lake
Mead, Hoover Dam's generating capacity is down 17%. At Glen Canyon Dam, it
has dropped 30%. The Western Area Power Administration, which distributes
electricity from the dams, is cutting deliveries and expects to spend more
than $30 million this year buying power to replace the lost Glen Canyon
energy.

Meanwhile, the National Park Service is spending millions of dollars chasing
the retreating waters at Mead and Powell, moving stranded recreation
facilities and extending boat ramps that now end in cracked mud.

It could get worse. The drought is the most severe to hit the river since
record-keeping began in 1906 and among the worst in 500 years.

Ancient tree rings tell of dry periods that persisted along the Colorado for
decades. In the late 1500s, two major droughts gripped the region back to
back.

"It seems like it's reasonable to assume it could happen again," said David
Meko, an associate research professor at the University of Arizona's
Laboratory of Tree-Ring Research. "We could have a few years off and dive
into another one of these."

Even if bountiful snowfall and rainfall return, it will take years for
Powell and Mead to refill. And even if the Colorado's flows return to
normal, that wouldn't match what the states were experiencing when they
divvied up the river's water in the early 1900s.

The early part of the last century was unusually wet. The annual flow on the
Colorado was then estimated at 18 million acre-feet (one acre-foot is enough
to supply two average households for a year). But the average since then has
been closer to 15 million acre-feet. Tree-ring studies suggest that over the
last 1,500 years, the average has been even less, between 13 million and 14
million acre-feet.

"They divided a very large pie, and we may have a smaller pie," said Jeanine
Jones, the Colorado River chief for the California Department of Water
Resources.

Even without the drought, population growth has been pushing use levels
closer to the limits of what the river can give. In that sense, the drought
may be an early warning.

"The worst thing that could happen now is if the drought goes away and we
don't do anything. Shame on us," said Dennis Underwood, who oversees
Colorado River issues for the Metropolitan Water District of Southern
California.

Doing something is not easy on the river, which in times of abundance has
been marked by court fights over who gets what.

"What concerns me about the current situation," said Scott Balcomb, a water
attorney who represents Colorado in the state drought talks, "is it's a
competitive environment. Each of us is guarding their allocation, and as a
result there seems to be some inertia."

Because they lack the huge downriver reservoirs that supply the lower basin,
Colorado and the other upper basin states feel they've already suffered more
than their neighbors to the south. Low irrigation flows on the upper
tributaries of the Colorado have resulted in millions of dollars' worth of
lost crops and livestock sell-offs.

"In the upper basin there's been pain going on for some time, and that's of
concern to people," said Don Ostler, executive director of the Upper
Colorado River Commission.

But the upper basin, where the river fills with snowmelt, is legally
obligated to deliver a certain amount of water to Arizona, California and
Nevada. If it didn't, the lower basin could make a "call on the river," and
the upper basin could be forced to reduce deliveries to farms and cities in
order to send water south.

That would be a politically difficult move. To avoid it, upper basin
interests are expected to argue that if total water deliveries over the last
decade are taken into account, they have more than met their obligation to
the lower basin.

The big grower-controlled irrigation districts that pump enormous quantities
of water from the river are also likely to feel the squeeze to sell some of
their crop water to urban areas.

"If the drought gets worse, you're going to get a lot of pressure on those
communities to fallow land," said water attorney Bill Swan, who represents
the Imperial Irrigation District in southeastern California, the river's
single biggest user.

In the lower basin, Nevada and Arizona would be the most vulnerable if a
shortage was declared. The huge project that Arizona built in the 1970s to
ship Colorado water to the state's interior farms and to Phoenix and Tucson
has some of the most junior rights on the river. Nevada also developed many
of its rights after California.

"We will take the hits first," said Sid Wilson, general manager of the
Central Arizona Project. "Agriculture in Arizona will be hurt. We will not
be able to continue storing water underground, and we'll have to start
pulling water out of the ground. But the point is, we're not going under
because of this drought."

The most worried of all is fast-growing southern Nevada, which gets most of
its water from Lake Mead. Even before the drought, the region needed more
than its share to keep pace with its exploding population.

The region's water agencies are proposing a mammoth project to pump
groundwater from rural parts of the state, spending millions paying
homeowners to tear out their lawns to reduce consumption and praying that
the states will work out a deal. "I'd like to avoid if at all possible a
call on the river," said Mulroy of the Southern Nevada Water Authority.
"That makes no sense. To me, that's a declaration of war. We're going to
wind up in the courts, and going to court isn't going to solve the problem.

"This drought is real. It's difficult," she said. "But I'm going to be
optimistic that there is enough flexibility and enough possibility to avoid
extraordinary pain."

=====================================================+

 

Date: Tuesday, July 6, 2004 12:07 PM

http://www.denverpost.com/Stories/0,1413,36%257E53%257E2253451,00.html?search=filter

Drought draining Lake Powell power generating capacity

By Theo Stein
Denver Post Staff Writer

Plummeting water levels in Lake Powell have drastically slashed electricity
generation at the reservoir's Glen Canyon Dam, forcing power authorities to
cut deliveries to utilities from the Front Range to Provo, Utah.

Federal officials fear that $100 million worth of hydropower generated
annually by Lake Powell could dry up completely by 2009 - if dam managers
continue releasing water at pre-drought rates.

That would deal a crushing economic blow not only to utilities that depend
on cheap hydropower from Lake Powell, but also to a host of federal and
state programs, including Colorado's endangered-fish recovery efforts.

Meanwhile, water levels in Lake Powell have fallen so low that Colorado and
neighboring states are considering asking the federal government to preserve
the lake's water for drinking supplies, which would cut hydropower
production even further.

"We are looking to see if there are ways to slow down the decline of Lake
Powell and Lake Mead," said Russ George, Colorado's natural resources
director. "We can't make more water. We're asking ourselves: 'Are there
things we can be doing to avoid taking water out?"'

Federal officials say they welcome state input on how best to manage the
water supply in Lake Powell and its sister reservoir in Arizona, Lake Mead,
during the drought.

On June 17, the seven Colorado River basin states - California, Arizona,
Nevada, Utah, Wyoming, New Mexico and Colorado - asked the U.S. Bureau of
Reclamation for a series of computer models simulating the impact of various
drought and water-delivery scenarios. The results will form the basis of a
report to the Interior Department offering recommendations for water
management during the drought and after.

Interior Secretary Gale Norton "is very serious about the states being in
the lead as long as possible," Bennett Raley, the assistant Interior
secretary who oversees the Bureau of Reclamation, said last week.

Only if the states can't develop a conservation plan will the federal
government step in, Raley said.

Lake Powell and Lake Mead were designed decades ago to provide drought-proof
supplies of drinking water for the arid Southwestern states along the
Colorado River. Cheap hydropower from Mead's Hoover Dam and Powell's Glen
Canyon Dam was a side benefit that became a critical foundation for the
region's 20th century urban and industrial growth.

The five-year drought has already drained Lake Powell to 43 percent of
capacity, reducing the pressure of water entering Glen Canyon's turbines.
That lost pressure, or "hydraulic head," has slashed the dam's generating
capacity by some 30 percent, leading to higher costs for Colorado's electric
utilities served by the Western Area Power Administration.

In 2002, WAPA, which sells power from dams in the Colorado River Storage
Project, raised rates 18 percent. During the past two years, WAPA was forced
to buy $135 million worth of power to honor existing contracts with Colorado
and Utah utilities. The power administration also had to slash deliveries by
a quarter this year.

If Glen Canyon Dam's output is cut completely, "(our) power could be priced
out of the market," warned WAPA's Brad Warren.

And still Lake Powell continues to fall.

Last winter's meager snows were expected to yield only half the average
runoff to the Colorado River, continuing a trend that started with the onset
of drought in 2000.

Powell is so low that federal hydrologists estimate there is a 20 percent
chance that drought could eliminate hydropower within five years. A repeat
of the disastrous 2002 drought year - or even two more marginally better
years like 2004 - could interrupt electric generation even sooner.

"If hydro is curtailed, they'll be forced to go from low-cost electricity
that's locked in to higher-priced power and the vagaries of the market,"
said Jim Owens, a spokesman for the Edison Electric Institute, a Washington,
D.C.-based industry group.

Those costs are already being passed on to customers.

"We had a 10 percent rate increase in 2002 and another small increase last
year," said Jim Van Someren, a spokesman for Westminster-based Tri- State
Generating and Transmission, the Colorado River Storage Project's biggest
customer.

This summer, the Tri-State board will probably have to consider another rate
hike for 2005, he said.

If the drought worsens, falling hydropower revenues also will shrink the
revolving fund that contributes $50 million each year to environmental
programs, including the state's endangered-fish recovery efforts.

Since 1988, $138.7 million has been raised by federal and state agencies for
the recovery program, which seeks to restore healthy populations of the
Colorado pikeminnow, the razorback sucker, humpback chub and bonytail in the
upper Colorado and San Juan river systems.

Glen Canyon has contributed about $51 million. By contrast, Colorado,
Wyoming and Utah only gave $14.6 million during the same time period.

Protecting that federal contribution "is at the top of our agenda," George
said.

Some environmental groups, such as Living Rivers of Salt Lake City, believe
a more cost- effective way to recover the four endangered fish is to
decommission the Glen Canyon Dam once drought drains the lake behind it.

They believe the region has entered a drier climate regime that was much
more common in the past.

Owen Lammers, the group's executive director, chafes at the description of
dam's hydropower as clean, cheap energy.

"That ignores the tremendous impact the dam has had on Grand Canyon and Glen
Canyon," Lammers said.

Lammers said it is likely that Lake Powell will take many years to refill -
if it refills at all. That will reduce electric revenues in perpetuity and
put pressure on federal officials to divert money from projects meant to
repair the damage caused by plugging up the river.

"If we can encourage 10 million households in the basin to put in a couple
of compact fluorescent lights," Lammers said, "we can eliminate the power
needed from Glen Canyon Dam - at a cost that's one-seventh of the power the
dam produces."

Staff writer Theo Stein can be reached at 303-820-1657 or tstein@denverpost.com.

=====================================================+

 

The New York Times - May 2, 2004


Drought Settles In, Lake Shrinks and West's Worries Grow


By KIRK JOHNSON and DEAN E. MURPHY

PAGE, Ariz. - At five years and counting, the drought that has parched much
of the West is getting much harder to shrug off as a blip.

Those who worry most about the future of the West - politicians, scientists,
business leaders, city planners and environmentalists - are increasingly
realizing that a world of eternally blue skies and meager mountain snowpacks
may not be a passing phenomenon but rather the return of a harsh climatic
norm.

Continuing research into drought cycles over the last 800 years bears this
out, strongly suggesting that the relatively wet weather across much of the
West during the 20th century was a fluke. In other words, scientists who
study tree rings and ocean temperatures say, the development of the modern
urbanized West - one of the biggest growth spurts in the nation's history -
may have been based on a colossal miscalculation.

That shift is shaking many assumptions about how the West is run. Arizona,
California, Colorado, Nevada, New Mexico, Utah and Wyoming, the states that
depend on the Colorado River, are preparing for the possibility of water
shortages for the first time since the Hoover Dam was built in the 1930's to
control the river's flow. The top water official of the Bush administration,
Bennett W. Raley, said recently that the federal government might step in if
the states could not decide among themselves how to cope with dwindling
supplies, a threat that riled local officials but underscored the growing
urgency.

"Before this drought, we had 20 years of a wet cycle and 20 years of the
most growth ever," said John R. D'Antonio, the New Mexico State engineer,
who is scrambling to find new water supplies for the suburbs of Albuquerque
that did not exist a generation ago.

The latest blow was paltry snowfall during March in the Rocky Mountains,
pushing down runoff projections for the Colorado River this year to 55
percent of average. Snowmelt is the lifeblood of the river, which provides
municipal water from Denver to Los Angeles and irrigates millions of acres
of farmland. The period since 1999 is now officially the driest in the 98
years of recorded history of the Colorado River, according to the United
States Geological Survey.

"March was a huge wake-up call as to the need to move at an accelerated
pace," said Mr. Raley, assistant secretary of the interior for water and
science.

 

Losing Water at Lake Powell

Some of the biggest water worries are focused here on Lake Powell, the vast
blue diamond of deep water that government engineers created in one of the
driest and most remote areas of the country beginning in the 1950's. From
its inception, Lake Powell, the nation's second-largest artificial lake,
after Lake Mead in Nevada, was a powerful symbol across the West. Some saw
it as a statement of human will and know-how, others of arrogance.

Powell, part of the Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, has lost nearly 60
percent of its water and is now about the size it was during the Watergate
hearings in 1973, when it was still filling up. White cliffs 10 stories
high, bleached by salts from the lake and stranded above the water, line its
side canyons. Elsewhere, retreating waters have exposed mountains of
sediment.

The tourist economy here in Page has been battered. The National Park
Service, which operates the recreation area, has spent millions of dollars
in recent years just to lay concrete for boat-launch ramps that must be
extended every year, a process that one marina operator here called "chasing
water."

Daniel C. McCool, a professor of political science at the University of Utah
and director of the American West Center, says Powell is the barometer of
the drought because what has happened here is as much about politics,
economics and the interlocking system of rules and rights called the law of
the river as it is about meteorology.

Part of the lake's problem, for example, dates to a miscalculation in 1922,
when hydrologists overestimated the average flow of the Colorado River and
locked the number into a multistate agreement called the Colorado River
Compact. The compact, along with a subsequent treaty with Mexico, requires
Lake Powell to release 8.23 million acre-feet of water each year below the
river's dam, Glen Canyon, no matter how much comes in.

Because the river's real average flow was less than the 1922 compact
envisioned, Powell very often released more than half of the water the
Colorado River delivered. But it did not really matter because the upper
basin states were not using their share. Now, communities from Denver to
Salt Lake City and Indian tribes with old water rights in their portfolios
are stepping forward to stake their claims. Lake Powell, which has been
called the aquatic piggy bank of the upper West, is overdrawn.

If water levels continue to fall, Powell will be unable to generate
electricity as early as 2007 or sooner, some hydrologists say. And it would
be reduced more or less to the old riverbed channel of the Colorado River
not long after that. Even now, the lake's managers say, it would take a
decade of historically normal rainfall to refill it.

"If we're only in the middle of this drought, then Lake Powell might be very
close to some very dramatic problems," said Dr. John C. Dohrenwend, a
retired geologist for the Geological Survey who lives near the lake.

Insufficient water for the Glen Canyon Dam turbines would be only the
beginning. At that point, much of the lake bottom would be exposed, creating
a vast environment for noxious weeds like tamarisk and thistle. The next
step in the spiral would come at what is called "dead pool," where decades'
worth of agricultural chemicals at the lake bottom would begin mixing more
actively with the reactivated river. The question then, environmentalists
say, is what would happen to the Grand Canyon, just south of the dam.

 

An Issue That May Go to Congress

"Americans won't stand for the Grand Canyon being endangered," said John
Weisheit, the conservation director for Living Rivers, an environmental
group in Moab, Utah, that advocates removing the dam at Glen Canyon and
allowing the river to return to its natural course. "In another year,
they're going to be talking more seriously about Powell in Congress."

But the fact is, no one knows: the weather could change tomorrow. Many past
Western droughts have ended suddenly, with a bang of precipitation. But some
dry spells persisted for generations. From about 900 to 1300, scientists
say, periodic drought in the West was the norm. Only a few times during that
period, according to tree-growth measurements, was precipitation anywhere
near the relatively high levels of the 20th century.

"What is unusual is not the drought periods, but the above-average wet
periods," said Dr. Robert Webb, a hydrologist with the Geological Survey who
specializes in the Colorado River.

The uncertainty has local, state and federal officials along the 1,450-mile
river scurrying to secure water allotments while also preparing for the
worst.

Already in Las Vegas, the regional water agency is removing the equivalent
of a football field of grass every day from front lawns, playgrounds and
golf courses to save on outdoor watering. Farther downriver, Arizona
officials are pumping billions of gallons of water into aquifers to save for
an even less rainy day.

Electricity has become a concern. The Western Area Power Administration, the
federal agency that distributes power from hydroelectric projects in the
Rocky Mountain West, plans to reduce by about 25 percent the amount of
electricity it can promise in future years.

 

Conserving on a Large Scale

In Los Angeles, a representative from the West's largest urban water agency,
the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California, is among a group of
Western water officials dusting off plans to help limit evaporation from
reservoirs, which could save billions of gallons. One idea is to pour a
nontoxic substance over the reservoirs to form a water-trapping barrier.

The group, which has been holding meetings, is even looking at far-off
solutions like raising the height of Hoover Dam so that more water could be
collected and saved during wet times.

"We understand we have a problem and we are working on it," said the Los
Angeles representative, Dennis Underwood, a former head of the federal
Bureau of Reclamation, which oversees dams and reservoirs in the West.

There are also worries downstream from Powell at Lake Mead, which serves
Nevada, Arizona and California. It could drop low enough as early as next
year to force officials to declare a drought emergency. That would hurt the
booming southern Nevada economy through significantly higher water rates and
outright bans on things like new swimming pools, said Patricia Mulroy,
general manager of the Southern Nevada Water Authority.

Mr. Raley of the Interior Department said he wanted the states to consider a
water bank, in which unused water could be leased or sold across state
lines. Some previous efforts to create banks, with federal oversight, have
been contentious because they were seen by smaller states as a means to
funnel more of the river to water-guzzling California.

But the notion of cutting private water deals on the Colorado is gaining
broader acceptance, in large part because of the drought. The most
celebrated example was a deal last year to sell irrigation water in the
Imperial Valley of Southern California to the urban water district in San
Diego.

Some advocates for agriculture fear that water-to-the-highest-bidder could
ravage ranches and farms if owners were induced to sell their irrigation
rights. But private-market supporters say the truth, like it or not, is that
farmers own most of the West's water, and ultimately there will be fewer of
them.

There is some concern that if the Colorado River goes into crisis, the
ensuing tangle of litigation over water rights, endangered species and
border disputes could undo the system of Western water law that has evolved
over the last 100 years.

Some say that would be a good thing.

"The law of the river is hopelessly, irretrievably obsolete, designed on a
hydrological fallacy, around an agrarian West that no longer exists,"
Professor McCool at the University of Utah said. "After six years of
drought, somebody will have to say the emperor has no clothes."

Water officials in Arizona and Nevada say they would also like to rethink
the law of the river to put their states on a more equal footing in sharing
the Colorado River. But Mr. Raley said such talk invites disaster and chaos,
especially during a drought.

"This isn't the time to plunge into chaos," he said.

Other people who live here on the fringe of Lake Powell say that the West's
great reservoirs have, in their very decline, proved their value in
stretching out limited water resources and underlined the difference between
past civilizations here that anthropologists say were wiped out or displaced
by drought.

"Those people back then had nothing to catch and save their water - now we
do," said Ronald W. Thompson, district manager of the Washington County
Water Conservancy District in southwestern Utah.

"I'm a believer that history repeats itself - long-term drought could
return," Mr. Thompson said. "But I suspect our civilization can weather
this."


Kirk Johnson reported from Page, Ariz., for this article and Dean E. Murphy from Grand Canyon National Park.

http://www.nytimes.com/2004/05/02/national/02DROU.html?ex=1084524890&ei=1&en=2b76cbf29870c081


=========================+++

NOTE: See Photographs associated with this NYT article!

I was pleasantly surprised and excited to discover the satellite photos of "Lake"
Powell steadily shrinking over a period of time. The credit for these images goes
to Dr. John Dohrenwend of the Utah Chapter in Torrey, Utah. He is a retired
UC Berkeley prof who works with Living Rivers.

Thanks to our Glen Canyon Group/Living Rivers activists in Moab (John
Weisheit, Susette Weisheit, and Owen Lammers) for making this happen!

-- David

=====================================================+



Date: Sunday, February 29, 2004 3:44 PM

Santa Barbara news Press - Local News - 2/29/04

http://news.newspress.com/topsports/022904sierra.htm


Immigration issues divide environmental group

Upcoming Sierra Club election includes a faction pushing for tighter controls


By SCOTT STEEPLETON
NEWS-PRESS ASSISTANT METRO EDITOR


The Sierra Club is synonymous with clean air and pretty forests.

But anti-immigration and animal rights could be added to that list if an
upcoming vote on the San Francisco-based environmental group's board of
directors goes the way some fear.

Beginning March 1, the club's 750,000 members will decide who fills five
seats on its 15-member board of directors. These elections have typically
taken place with little fanfare outside the club, but with one coalition
angling for a more aggressive anti-immigration posture in the fight to
protect the environment, this year's election has exposed a schism in the
group that John Muir founded 112 years ago.

Some past and present directors say if the coalition -- including club
Director Ben Zuckerman of Los Angeles and animal-rights advocates who want
the club to come out against hunting and fishing -- succeeds in getting its
slate on the board, the Sierra Club's $100 million annual budget would be
vulnerable to any group with a political agenda.

The voting ends April 15.

"A lot of e-mails have been going back and forth over whether an outside
group is trying to take over the Sierra Club," said Tony Biegen, vice
chairman of the Sierra Club Los Padres Chapter's 3,000-member Santa Barbara
Group. "Locally, we're listening to both sides and trying to understand what
the issues are, because the issues are complex."


One person trying to block the "overthrow" is Morris Dees, a longtime civil
rights leader and co-founder of the Southern Poverty Law Center.

"I put my name forward as a candidate for the Sierra Club board not because
I have leadership experience in the club -- I have none -- but because it
affords me the opportunity to deliver what I feel is an important message: A
hostile takeover of the club by radical anti-immigrant activists is in the
making," he stated in candidate papers.

Mr. Dees said he doesn't want a seat on the board; rather, he hopes his
candidacy moves other members to vote against the anti-immigration slate.

Ada Babine, who chairs the Sierra Club's Santa Barbara Group, summed up the
controversy as a long-standing difference of opinion between two factions:
One encouraging restricted immigration into the United States and another
that says overpopulation of the planet is the most pressing problem facing
the environment.

"It is global," said Ms. Babine, "and it won't be solved by closing our
borders."

If this 70-plus mother of five had her way, population at home and around
the globe would be curbed, an objective the Sierra Club has been pursuing
for many years, "and pursuing it with vigor," she said.

But if she's already responsible for a handful of "resource consumers" who
in turn brought two more into the world, isn't it a bit hypocritical to tell
others to stop having children?

"When my kids were born, population wasn't an issue," she said. "I don't
think we can redo what's been done."

She said the solution is educating women, "especially Third World women,
that they have a choice."

Club members who are involved, Ms. Babine added, are the ones who will set
the future course.

"We are democratic and we have our quarrels, but the Sierra Club will solve
its internal problems."

The Sierra Club turned its attention toward U.S. population growth as early
as 1965.

"A few years ago, a vote on population growth was kind of divisive for the
national Sierra Club," said Mr. Biegen. "But one of the biggest
environmental decisions anyone can make is whether they're going to have
children."

Some of the same people behind the earlier anti-immigration push -- a group
known as Sierrans for U.S. Population Stabilization -- are involved in this
year's try.

The question of limiting immigration, Mr. Biegen admits, is "a touchy issue
because of the concerns about racism, or the appearance of racism."

That concern is also on the minds of people outside the club, who bristle
when they hear the Sierra Club's environmental policies could be hijacked in
favor of a political agenda targeting specific peoples.

"We're all scared of immigration. I'm scared of immigration," said Carlos
Cerecedo, a prominent local court interpreter and immigrants' rights
advocate. "But when you tie migratory currents and the dynamism of a world
economy to the environment, then the next question has to be, 'Are you
pushing for political issues or are you really concerned for the
environment?' If you are concerned about the environment, put your resources
where your mouth is and teach immigrants how to clean up the yard, clean up
their act, clean up the environment."

Mr. Cerecedo, who has been in the United States for nearly three decades and
became a citizen about 10 years ago, said he has been following the club's
internal struggles from the moment he heard "immigration" and "the
environment" uttered in the same breath.

"If what they're talking about is education, just say, 'The Sierra Club is
going to do educational outreach to teach all these immigrants how to
recycle, how to use biodegradable materials,' " he said. "I would be the
first one to put all their materials into 10 different languages if they
wanted me to."


STEVE MALONE / NEWS-PRESS

Ada Babine, who chairs the Sierra Club's Santa Barbara Group, says the
schism that has emerged in the club is based on a difference of opinion
between one faction that encourages restricted immigration into the U.S. and
another that believes overpopulation is the most pressing problem facing the
environment.

AT A GLANCE

* Terms expire this year for five members of the national Sierra Club board
of directors: Nick Aumen, Loxahatchee, Fla.; Ed Dobson, Bluff, Utah;
Jennifer Ferenstein, Missoula, Mont.; Jan O'Connell, Grand Rapids, Mich.;
and David Wells, Fairfax, Va.

The 10 other terms expire as follows:

* 2005

Jim Catlin, Salt Lake City, Utah; Larry Fahn, San Francisco; Marcia Hanscom,
Malibu; Chuck McGrady, Tuxedo, N.C.; and Ben Zuckerman, Los Angeles.

* 2006

Robbie Cox, Chapel Hill, N.C.; Lisa Force, Scottsdale, Ariz.; Doug La
Follette, Madison, Wis.; Paul Watson, Friday Harbor, Wash.; and Bernie
Zaleha, Boise, Idaho

.=====================================================+

 

To:<browerpower@wildnesswithin.com>
Date: Wednesday, October 15, 2003 6:39 PM

http://online.wsj.com/article/0,,BT_CO_20031014_001456,00.html


Sierra Club Jumps Into The Mutual Fund Fray

by MARCELO PRINCE Of DOW JONES NEWSWIRES
October 14, 2003 7:30 a.m.


NEW YORK -- It's not easy being green, but the Sierra Club is out to prove
that it can be rewarding.

The nation's largest environmental organization has given its imprimatur to
a pair of mutual funds that vet investments for environmental and social
issues.

The funds not only provide Sierra's 700,000 members and similar-minded
investors a way to use their investments to advance environmental issues,
but give some revenue to the Sierra Club to fund its activities, said Garvin
Jabusch, a vice president at Forward Management of San Francisco, which
launched the funds in January.

The twin funds have performed well in their first year, though they lack the
history and heft of other socially responsible funds.

The Sierra Club Stock fund, which has $6 million in assets, has a return of
23.8% so far this year, compared with a 17.9% return on the S&P 500 Index.
The $26 million Sierra Club Balanced fund, which has roughly 40% of its
assets in bonds and cash, has gained 13.4% this year.

The portfolios, which have the same equity holdings, are split evenly
between two sub-advisers with distinct investment styles. Harry Smith, chief
investment officer of Harris Bretall Sullivan and Smith LLC, focuses on
large, fast-growing companies. Kathy O'Connor, a portfolio manager at New
York Life Investment Management, looks for large, undervalued companies.

Each manager selects investments based on financial criteria and their
recommendations are then subjected to 20 environmental and social guidelines
originally established by the Sierra Club for its own endowment. The funds
managers say the screens are some of the strictest in the industry.

The potential investments must pass all 20 screens and be approved by the
Sierra Club's investment advisory committee before they can be added to the
portfolios. More than 1,500 companies have been vetted and about 320 have
made the cut so far.

Not surprisingly, the funds avoid oil producers and explorers, mining and
timber companies and electric utilities. They also exclude tobacco companies
and those with labor practices that don't meet the Sierra Club's standards,
such as Wal-Mart Stores Inc. (WMT). Many large pharmaceutical manufacturers
and brokerage firms fail the Sierra Club's environmental screens as well.

The funds' biggest holdings at the end of September were Dell Inc. (DELL);
Novellus Systems Inc. (NVLS), which makes equipment for semiconductor
makers; MGIC Investment Corp. (MTG), which sells mortgage insurance; and
electronics retailer Best Buy Inc. (BBY).

Dell gets high marks for its efforts to reduce waste by recycling computer
parts and donating old equipment to schools. It has also taken steps to
improve its manufacturing process, using citric acid to clean motherboards
rather than toxic industrial solvents.

Technology stocks are the funds' largest holdings, representing about 30% of
assets. But there are several tech bellwethers that don't make the grade.
Among them are Cisco Systems Inc. (CSCO), whose plans to expand its San Jose
headquarters has angered the Sierra Club, and Intel Corp. (INTC), which has
water pollution problems at a facility in Rio Rancho, N.M.

"We are in a very strong market; we have felt that way for some time," says
Smith, who has managed money for the Sierra Club for nearly three decades.
His half of the portfolio is "aggressively leveraged to an expanding
economic environment" with investments in high-tech, media and brokerages.

His favorites include Charles Schwab Corp. (SCH) and Starwood Hotels &
Resorts Worldwide Inc. (HOT), which both hit 52-week highs last week. Schwab
shares, which have risen 23% so far this year, closed Friday at $13.08.
Starwood shares, which started the year at $23.74, closed Friday at $36.62.

"A lot of technology is creeping into the portfolio," says O'Connor. "Tech
hardware and equipment has become a value story at this point because they
have cut costs so dramatically and business is changing drastically."

O'Connor said she has recently been adding to stakes in Dell, as well as
InFocus Corp. (INFS), which makes video projectors, and teen clothier
American Eagle Outfitters Inc. (AEOS).

InFocus shares, which hit a 52-week low of $3.95 in April, closed Friday at
$5.31. American Eagle, which have traded between $9.75 and $23.37 in the
past year, closed at $17.35.


(Marcelo Prince covers software for Dow Jones Newswires.)

-By Marcelo Prince, Dow Jones Newswires; 201-938-5244;
marcelo.prince@dowjones.com

=====================================================+

 

To: <browerpower@wildnesswithin.com>
Date: Thursday, October 9, 2003 11:49 PM

Deseret News, Thursday, October 09, 2003

[11 great photos available for downloading on this webpage! The
reservoir hasn't been this low since the 1970s!]

http://deseretnews.com/dn/view/0,1249,515037425,00.html

Lake Powell: Half empty or half full?

By Lynn Arave
Deseret Morning News


LAKE POWELL -- Much reduced from its historic high-water level, the
question can be posed: Is Lake Powell half empty or half full?

And the answer depends upon whom you ask.

Those who live and work near the huge reservoir straddling the
Utah/Arizona border worry that the outside world's perception, at least,
is that the half-empty desert lake -- a tourist magnet -- is drying up,
like many much-shallower reservoirs in the drought-stricken West.

"Some people think we're just a mud puddle," says Bob Seney, vice
president of operations for Lake Powell Resorts and Marinas, a
concessionaire.

The low-water stigma and the stagnant economy are both to blame for
business that's down 15 percent to 20 percent for his company, he said.

Some environmentalists, on the other hand, seem energized by Lake
Powell's declining depth, even though it is a particularly deep reservoir
and is nowhere near empty. The Colorado River's Glen Canyon and its
tributaries have been mostly submerged beneath the lake's waters for
decades -- "full pool" was achieved in 1980 -- and the falling water
level has revealed long-lost caverns and red-rock formations, most
whitewashed by the rising-and-falling reservoir's "bathtub ring."

The revelations are increasing public awareness of what treasures
generally lie below the water, says Chris Peterson, director of the Glen
Canyon Institute of Salt Lake City.

Lake Powell is named after John Wesley Powell, the scientist/adventurer
who led two hazardous rowboat trips down the the Green and Colorado
rivers in 1869 and 1871. He named this stretch of the Colorado "Glen
Canyon" because of its "curious ensemble of wonderful features -- carved
walls, royal arches, glens, alcove gulches, mounds and monuments."

The Glen Canyon Institute is dedicated to getting the government to
carefully study the value of Lake Powell -- and to ultimately breaching
4-decade-old Glen Canyon Dam and draining the lake it has created.

The dropping water levels, Peterson believes, haven't hurt their cause.

"It has made people start to ask questions."

For tourists still drawn to half-full Lake Powell, the lower water level
hardly seems a detraction.

"It was magnificent," said one member of a group of eight visitors from
Washington, D.C., who spent three days on a houseboat in mid-September.
The canyon walls were higher, they agreed, yet there was still plenty of
water in the lake.

And the Escalante River Canyon, a major tributary, was a treat to behold
with low water, they said.


Fewer visitors?

Indeed, those who visit the changing lake are apt to find signs of both
rebirth and death in the canyons.

A craggy, pre-lake tree at the end of Warm Spring Creek Canyon, north of
Bullfrog Marina, clings to life in a rocky alcove not visible for about
three decades. Released by the receding waters, the hardy shrub is
starting to partially leaf again.

Meanwhile, downstream the tops of a half-dozen lifeless trees in Annie's
Canyon are sticking up from the water -- evidence of a shady grove that's
now a navigation hazard, empty plastic bottles hanging from branches to
alert boaters. Elsewhere in the lake, swirls of waves and turbulence
signal new shallows where once-submerged cliffs and pinnacles are almost
ready to surface.

Such sights are witnessed by those who explore the 200-mile-long lake by
houseboat, speedboat, kayak or other watercraft . And by some counts,
their numbers are dropping.

Through August, there were 1,426,528 million visitors to Glen Canyon
National Recreation Area, according to spokeswoman Char Obergh -- 14
percent fewer than during the same time period in 2002.

On the other hand, Joan Staveley, executive director of the Page-Lake
Powell Area Chamber of Commerce, says visitation for the entire year so
far is actually up 1 percent over last year for the south section of the
lake.

She admits the perception among some visitors, that "we didn't think you
had any water," is undoubtedly keeping some people away. But the lower
the water, the more campsites there are, she said.

"You're seeing things you haven't seen," Staveley said. "In truth, more
places have opened up, with more places to hike."

Both women believe rising gasoline prices and a rugged economy are
probably as much to blame as the perception of not enough water to make
Lake Powell worth a visit.


Giant water bank

Doug Hendrix, public affairs specialist with the Bureau of Reclamation,
said the lake's surface now sits an elevation of 3,603 feet. That's 97
feet short of "full pool," and experts expect the lake to fall almost
another 5 feet by January 2004, to an even 3,600 feet, before there's any
hope of an increase in water levels.

Still, all water demands have been met this year, because Lake Powell is
a giant savings bank, with a five-year water supply for such droughts.
The reservoir still contains 12.2 million acre-feet of water -- and the
lake is 400 feet deep in the main channel.

Construction of Glen Canyon Dam began in 1956 and was completed by 1962.
Lake Powell's level hasn't been this low since 1963, when the reservoir
was beginning to back up for the first time behind the then-new dam.

But dry times are inevitably followed by wet times in the West.

"We're hoping we get above-average precipitation next year," Hendrix said.

Obergh said that in her 30 years at the lake, she's never seen it so low.
However, it is still a phenomenal sight to see, she said.

"It's a gorgeous lake. People continue to come -- though some aren't as
happy with low water."


What is/what was

Because of receding and ever-changing shorelines, some boat ramps have
been closed or relocated. But fishermen, water-skiers and sightseers
alike are still finding they can get into the water.

Lake Powell has an estimated 1,960 miles of shore -- and some long-unseen
formations and historic spots are rising as the lake's level lowers.

Staveley said her personal favorite is the recent uncovering of the
Klondike Bar, between Wahweap and Dangling Rope marinas, which features
old steps carved in the rock by miners. She also said the Hite area near
the north end of the elongated lake is fascinating because it's
"mudded-in." There's no lake access there, with such low water -- but
that makes it all the more intriguing, Staveley said.

Photographers are also finding much to see.

Seney said October is one of the best months for photography along Lake
Powell because the lower autumn sun creates more shadows.

He discounts talking of draining the lake and "bringing back" Glen Canyon.

"You can't ever make it the way it was," he said. "There's still a lot of
lake here. We've just made the cliffs higher now."

The Glen Canyon Institute's Peterson, though, sees positive signs that
the pre-reservoir canyon can indeed be revitalized.

Desert varnish, the dark tapestry-like "stains" from storm water and
minerals that streak many red-rock cliffs, will likely remove all signs
of the prominent bathtub ring now visible high on the walls of Glen
Canyon within 30 years, if steadily exposed to air, he said.

And flash floods, he and others believe, will ultimately flush all
sediment and trash from canyons -- if the dam is removed.

------------------------------------------------------------------------

PHOTOS:

The tops of a half-dozen lifeless trees sticking up out of the lake -
evidence of a once-shady grove - are now a navigation hazard, empty
plastic bottles hanging from branches to alert boaters. In other places
pre-lake trees, not visible for decades, are starting to partially leaf
again.
Ravell Call, Deseret Morning News

Colorful Tapestry Wall shows signs of white where recent water levels
were at Lake Powell.
Ravell Call, Deseret Morning News

A ramp ends well above the water at Halls Crossing at Lake Powell.
Ravell Call, Deseret Morning News

A boat glides out of an alcove that was mostly under water when the lake
was at its highest.
Ravell Call, Deseret Morning News

Lake Powell, seen from Navajo Mountain, may one day be drained, if the
Glen Canyon Institute has its wish.
Ravell Call, Deseret Morning News

Desert varnish, the dark tapestrylike 'stains' from storm water and
minerals that streak many red-rock cliffs, will likely remove all signs
of the prominent bathtub ring as it is exposed to air.
Ravell Call, Deseret Morning News

Rocks show through the water and present hazards to boaters as the water
drops at Lake Powell.
Ravell Call, Deseret Morning News

The falling water level has revealed long-lost caverns and rock
formations. This view was under water until water levels dropped.
Ravell Call, Deseret Morning News

A boat makes its way into The Cathedral in the Desert at Lake Powell.
Water levels were recently near the top of the photograph.
Ravell Call, Deseret Morning News

Construction of Glen Canyon Dam was finished by 1962.
Ravell Call, Deseret Morning News

Lake Powell on the Utah/Arizona border is named after John Wesley Powell,
the scientist/adventurer who led two hazardous rowboat trips down the the
Green and Colorado rivers in 1869 and 1871.
Ravell Call, Deseret Morning News

E-mail: lynn@desnews.com

(C) 2003 Deseret News Publishing Company

=====================================================+

 

To: <browerpower@wildnesswithin.com>
Date: Wednesday, October 1, 2003 1:28 PM
Subject: Article on Camejo

http://www.bayarea.com/mld/cctimes/6904591.htm

Greens count on candidate to alter party's far-out image

By Suzanne Pardington
CONTRA COSTA TIMES

Peter Camejo (above) "is broadening people's concepts of
what the Green Party is interested in," said Green Treasurer
Michael Wyman. "I think the image we're trying to project is
we're competent, professional, rational people who have a very
detailed program for change in California."

Peter Camejo knew expectations were so low for him going
into the first recall campaign forum that he had one simple
goal: not to seem like a nut.

As a Green Party candidate for governor, he knew many
people would assume he had long hair and wore beads.

"If I can just be normal," he said he reasoned before the event,
"they are going to say, 'This guy did pretty good.'"

The Sept. 3 forum in Walnut Creek was a big moment for
Camejo and the Greens. As the first third-party candidate in a
televised California gubernatorial debate, Camejo had an
unprecedented chance to broadcast his party's views to a
national audience.

Not even Ralph Nader, the Green candidate for president in
2000, had that opportunity.

Wearing a conservative suit, his gray hair trimmed short,
Camejo looked more like the investor he is than the hippie
some viewers might have expected.

The only sign that he wasn't completely used to his new place
in the political spotlight was his slightly crooked tie.

In this historic, nationally watched recall, Greens are counting
on Camejo to help highlight and legitimize a party often
dismissed as a group of tree-hugging, far-left radicals who
steal votes from Democrats and hand elections to the
Republicans.

To party leaders, Camejo, 63, is the perfect man for the job.
He has been an outspoken and passionate advocate for civil
rights, labor, environmental and social justice causes since he
was a teenager.

But he also has experience in the business world, as the
founder of an investment firm that screens companies for their
environmental and social practices.

"Peter's candidacy is broadening people's concepts of what the
Green Party is interested in," said Michael Wyman, treasurer
of the California Green Party.

"I think the image we're trying to project is we're competent,
professional, rational people who have a very detailed program
for change in California."

Camejo doesn't like labels, but when pressed to describe his
political views, he says he's a watermelon: green on the outside
and red on the inside.

In his firebrand days, he was expelled from UC Berkeley for
his anti-Vietnam War activities and ran for president as a
socialist in 1976. He now works for change from inside the
capitalist system.

But some say Camejo remains too far left of the mainstream
for most California voters. In his November bid for governor,
he won just 5 percent of the votes.

The latest recall poll from the Public Policy Institute of
California has him in fourth place with just 3 percent support
as a candidate to replace Gray Davis if the governor is
unseated.

"I think there's a perception that the Green Party is a major
force in California," said Roger Salazar, former Davis press
secretary and an adviser to the anti-recall campaign. "I don't
think that's ever been proven to be true."

 

A young socialist

As a teenager, Camejo would listen to the McCarthy hearings
on the radio. He used to save his allowance and send it to civil
rights workers in the South. He ordered socialist pamphlets
from an ad in the New York Times.

At a time of widespread anti-Communism, he recalled, he
would say openly in school that wealth should be shared.

"I remember one teacher say, 'Where do you get these ideas,
Peter?'"

He's not sure exactly where. His family is mostly conservative.
But visits to his father in Venezuela made him aware of social
and economic inequity.

Since his parents' divorce when he was 7, he lived with his
mother in Long Island and spent summers with his father, a
wealthy Venezuelan developer.

After work, he would play soccer with the young workers at
his father's construction sites. When the game was over, his
friends went home to hovels.

"At a very young age, I started thinking through social issues,"
he said. "Why can't we have a home for everyone in
Venezuela? America did it."

He remembers sitting on top of one of his father's luxury
buildings one morning, watching the sun rise, looking at the
poverty around him and thinking, "I will spend my life helping
the poor, and I'm never going to take advantage of the fact
that I was born into wealth."

While a math and history student at UC Berkeley, he hit his
stride as an activist.

One night in 1967, he was among 135 people who denounced
the Vietnam War on the steps of Sproul Hall. Camejo was
suspended for using an unauthorized microphone.

It turned into an expulsion when he defied an order not to
leaflet on campus. He was two terms short of graduation, but
he never finished his degree.

 

Speaking out

In the 1970s, Camejo lived on little money and continued to
work for anti-war and other political and social causes.

He had a particular interest in helping Latino workers in the
United States and Latin American political prisoners.

His Venezuelan roots give him a different perspective on the
struggles of Latinos than most Americans, he said.

"Even though I look very white, very European, as many Latin
Americans do, I'm very Latin American," he said.

"I feel enormous pain for the poor Mexicans working here in
the fields and the people working in the hotels at minimum
wage and how they are treated."

Antonio Gonzalez, president of the William C. Velasquez
Institute, a Latino policy and research think tank with offices
in San Antonio and Los Angeles, remembers Camejo from the
1970s.

Gonzalez was a student at UC San Diego, and Camejo was an
activist and socialist 1976 presidential candidate with a shock
of curly hair.

Even then, he was known in activist circles as a powerful
public speaker.

"He was like he is now, full of energy, very intense, obviously
very smart, sort of a fast talker," Gonzalez said.

"Peter has always had the gift of gab. He has always had the
ability to communicate ideas in a pithy sort of way so that you
can grasp a complicated concept simply."

Back then, Camejo was not an "issues guy," Gonzalez said.
Instead, he criticized the fundamentals of the American
political establishment and foreign policy, Gonzalez said.

His campaign issues were ending the Vietnam War and the
FBI's domestic counter-intelligence programs, which Camejo
says targeted him because of his activism.

Jaime Regalado, executive director of the Edmund G. "Pat"
Brown Institute of Public Affairs at Cal State Los Angeles,
said Camejo has always been known for his keen intellect.

"He was one of the few people who came from the
intelligentsia but was able to connect with the common
person," said Regalado, who has known Camejo for more than
20 years.

In his gubernatorial campaign, Camejo comes across as a
professorial man who speaks from the heart in a way people
understand, Regalado said.

"He has matured in his ideology; he hasn't left it. He is no
longer seen as the firebrand that he was when he was part of
the socialist movement."

Nevertheless, in the Sept. 3 forum of recall replacement
candidates, Camejo took positions few major party candidates
would dare espouse:

In favor of gay marriage, raising taxes for the wealthy,
regulation of the energy industry and universal health care.
Against the "mania" of school testing, the death penalty and
the three strikes sentencing law.

With little chance of winning, Camejo has nothing to lose in
stating the Green positions clearly and strongly.

"I'm not there to see if I can add 2 percent to win," he said.
"I'm there to make a point and build my base stronger."

 

Investing in change

After living five years in Walnut Creek, Camejo moved this
summer with his wife of 15 years, Morella, to Folsom to be
closer to their grandchildren.

He lives in a comfortable house with a three-car garage in a
quiet, upscale neighborhood. He describes himself as "well-
off" from his socially responsible investment business.

In a statement of economic interests, he listed 11 investments
worth between $10,001 and $100,000 and three in the
$100,001 to $1 million range.

He earns less than $100,000 a year as chairman of the board of
Oakland-based Progressive Asset Management Inc., the
company he founded, and more than $100,000 in commissions
and fees as a broker with Financial West Group.

He does not see his socialist background and capitalist
business pursuits as a contradiction.

If investors press businesses to adopt environmentally and
socially responsible practices, they help address some of the
concerns of labor and social movements, such as pollution,
child labor, corruption and other abuses, he said.

Camejo brought his socially minded investment philosophy to
Contra Costa in 1999 when county supervisors appointed him
to the board of the county's Employees' Retirement
Association.

It is the only public office Camejo has held.

John Gioia, a county supervisor, said he and other supervisors
liked the idea that investments can serve two purposes: to
provide a return and to have a positive impact in the
community.

However, supervisors replaced him on the nine-member board
in 2002 over concerns that he was advocating for lower
employee retirement contributions and unreasonably higher
retiree benefits at the peril of the county's bottom line.

The pension plan is projected to have a $1.2 billion shortfall by
2007, mostly because of poor fund performance and pension
board policies.

Camejo stands by his decisions on the retirement board, saying
he was looking out for the interests of the retired workers.

When there was a surplus, he wanted to give more money to
the retirees, instead of helping the county financially, he said.
"The county's budget is not our problem."

 

The spoiler

Now, as he campaigns a second time for the governor's office,
Camejo sees his candidacy as a chance to call for changes to
the electoral system and raise the profile of the Green
platform.

Although Camejo garnered votes from disgruntled Democrats
and his core of Green voters in November, the two-party
winner-take-all system makes it near impossible for him to win
a statewide office.

"It's difficult to take someone like Peter and the Green Party
more seriously because some people see it as a wasted vote,"
said Regalado of the Pat Brown Institute.

That's why Camejo advocates giving parties legislative seats in
proportion to the number of votes they receive. That system
would give smaller parties more clout and a voice in
government.

In the current system, a third party also has an unintended
impact, he said.

While the Greens want to further a more liberal agenda, it's the
conservatives who benefit from their candidacy.

Like Nader in the Gore-Bush election, Camejo has been
accused of being a spoiler who hurts the Democratic Party.

Camejo says that argument is an insult to the voters, who
understand the choice they are making when they vote Green.

"Democrats are now aware that Greens are a force," he said.
"They understand it in part because of the spoiler element. If I
can get 5.3 percent, what I say about Cruz Bustamante can
make a difference whether he gets elected or not."

But Salazar, the Davis adviser, dismissed that notion.

Salazar believes that the Camejo campaign was used by the
Simon camp in the November governor's race to go after
Davis. Simon invited Camejo to the only debate last fall to
embarrass Davis, he said.

Sean Walsh, a Republican strategist who worked on Simon's
campaign and now works for Arnold Schwarzenegger,
acknowledged that some people in the Simon camp saw
Camejo as a possible spoiler.

In the recall campaign, the effect is more complex. A high
turnout for Camejo could hurt Republicans by bringing out
more liberal voters who oppose the effort to oust Davis, Walsh
said. On the other hand, Camejo could dilute the liberal votes
for Bustamante as a replacement.

"People want to turn him into the Ralph Nader of California
politics and the likelihood is it's not going to occur," Walsh
said.

More people do seem to be hearing Camejo's message. For the
first time in his gubernatorial campaign, Camejo is recognized
in public.

He doesn't like the attention. "I used to like to be able to run
for governor and nobody knew you in the grocery store."


Staff writer Peter Felsenfeld contributed to this story. Reach
Suzanne Pardington at 925-943-8345 or
spardington@cctimes.com.

=====================================================+



Date: Sunday, August 31, 2003 9:33 AM

Lake Powell draining the result of natural forces...

"Total unregulated inflow into Lake Powell in water years 2000 and 2001
was 62 and 59 percent of average, respectively, and only 25 percent of
average in 2002. Inflow in 2002 was the lowest ever observed since the
completion of Glen Canyon Dam in 1963. ... Total unregulated inflow for
water year 2003 will likely be about 51 percent of average.
"

 

RRFW Riverwire - GLEN CANYON DAM UPDATE
Updated August 29, 2003

Operations

Releases from Glen Canyon Dam will be lower in September than August.
Releases in August averaged about 14,600 cubic feet per second (cfs) with
a total of 900,000 acre-feet released. In September, releases will
average 8,000 cfs with a total of 476,000 acre-feet scheduled to be
released. On Mondays through Saturdays (except for Labor Day) in
September, daily fluctuations due to load following will likely vary
between a low of 5,000 cfs (during late evening and early morning
off-peak hours) to a high of 10,000 cfs (during late afternoon and early
evening on-peak hours). On Sundays (and on Labor Day), releases will be
5,000 cfs from 7 pm until 7 am, and 8,000 cfs from 7 am until 7 pm.

Releases from Glen Canyon Dam in October and November of 2003 are
currently scheduled be 492,000 acre-feet and 476,000 acre-feet
respectively, with the same load following pattern as September.

Because of the draw down condition of Lake Powell, releases from Lake
Powell in water year 2003 are being scheduled to meet the minimum
objective release of 8.23 million acre-feet. This is consistent with the
requirements of the Criteria for Coordinated Long-Range Operation of
Colorado River Reservoirs.

Basin Hydrology

Drought in the Colorado River basin continues. Inflow volumes have been
substantially below average this year with water year 2003 being the 4th
consecutive year with below average inflow to Lake Powell. April through
July unregulated inflow to Lake Powell in 2003 was 3.91 million acre-feet,
only 49 percent of the 30 year average. Total unregulated inflow for water
year 2003 will likely be about 51 percent of average.

Snow accumulations in water year 2003 were again well below average
levels. Additionally, what snowpack there was in the Upper Colorado River
basin this year melted earlier than normal, with the runoff for the most
part, being completed by late June. This has resulted in very low summer
flows. Inflow to Lake Powell in July tallied up to only 350,000
acre-feet or 22 percent of average. Summer thunderstorms can help
augment river flows in the summer, but thus far there has been only limited
monsoonal precipitation in the Upper Colorado River basin. Unregulated inflow
to Lake Powell in August will likely be only 24 percent of average. Inflow to Lake Powell on
August 28, 2003 was 4,800 cfs, 50 percent of what is usually seen in late August.

Total unregulated inflow into Lake Powell in water years 2000 and 2001
was 62 and 59 percent of average, respectively, and only 25 percent of
average in 2002. Inflow in 2002 was the lowest ever observed since the
completion of Glen Canyon Dam in 1963. These low inflows have reduced
water storage in Lake Powell. Lake Powell reached a low water surface
elevation this spring at 3605 feet (95 feet from full pool) on May 1,
2003. The lake then rose in response to snowmelt-runoff, reaching a peak
on June 23, 2003 at 3616.6 feet. The current elevation of Lake Powell is
3,604.8 feet (95.2 feet from full pool). Current storage is
approximately 12.2 million acre-feet (50 percent of capacity). The water
surface elevation at Lake Powell will likely continue to decrease for the
remainder of the year. Under expected inflows, Lake Powell will likely
be near elevation 3600 feet on January 1, 2004.

This release courtesy Tom Ryan.

=====================================================+

 

Date: Friday, August 29, 2003 11:15 AM
Subject: [muir] Indians object to fast-track thinning

[This is the Daschle-sponsored logging operation that suspended
environmental laws and that was supported by the Sierra Club...]

Rapid City Journal
Friday August 29, 2003

Native Americans object to fast-track thinning

By Bill Harlan, Journal Staff Writer

BEAVER PARK -- An American Indian archaeologist and a Rapid City
treaty-rights group object to thinning that is under way in Beaver
Park Roadless Area, saying culturally sensitive sites are at risk.

Tim Mentz, historic preservation officer for Standing Rock Sioux
Tribe, said Wednesday that the U.S. Forest Service should have
delayed the project to consult more thoroughly with Indian tribes.
Logging is imminent or already in progress in areas that have not
been surveyed for sacred sites, Mentz said Wednesday. "Nobody's
monitoring it, and nobody knows what effect it will have. It's
active destruction, and it's going on wholesale."

Black Hills National Forest supervisor John Twiss disagreed. "We are
dedicated to following the law and doing no harm," he said.

Still, the thinning project is moving ahead quicker than most, and
it did bypass certain preservation regulations.

Congress last year enacted legislation allowing fast-track thinning
of the area, where a mountain pine beetle outbreak is expanding.
Senate Minority Leader Tom Daschle pushed the measure through
Congress after local residents, local and state officials and the
Forest Service complained the dead bug trees were a fire hazard.

The bill, which was attached to an anti-terrorism bill, allows the
Forest Service to bypass provisions of the National Environmental
Protection Act. NEPA is the umbrella legislation that also invokes
historic-preservation rules.

"When you remove NEPA, the whole umbrella breaks down," Mentz said.

Charmaine White Face of Defenders of the Black Hills -- a volunteer
organization for protecting Indian treaty rights -- calls the measure
the "Tom Daschle Rider."

In a recent opinion piece in the Sioux Falls Argus Leader, White
Face wrote that "tribes have nowhere to turn to protect their sacred
places, burial sites and cultural sites in the Black Hills." (The
Journal was unable to contact White Face.)

Daschle visited the Beaver Park area on Thursday with Forest Service
chief Dale Bosworth.

Daschle agreed that all sacred sites should be located and
protected. "I think we've done a very good job of that so far," he
said. "And we need to do more."

But he added: "But we're working against time. The fire danger here
is very real."

Archaeologist Dave McKee, historic-preservation officer for Black
Hills National Forest, said Wednesday that most of the 8,700-acre
thinning area had been surveyed for historic and sacred sites during
previous timber sales. Fourteen sites in the area are "marked for
avoidance" in the Beaver Park thinning plan, he said. The Forest
Service dropped three proposed "harvest units" because of historic
sites and modified the boundaries of six other units, McKee said.

But he also acknowledged that 1,300 acres inside the area had not
been inventoried, including some of the land inside a 700-acre
thinning project in Forbes Gulch, the heart of the roadless area.

Pam Brown, district ranger for Northern Hills Ranger District, said
rugged terrain and unstable standing trees killed by beetles made
the area too dangerous for a detailed inventory.

She said old records and a common-sense analysis of terrain could
protect most sites.

"If it's a dry slope with no water, you're pretty safe," she said.

McKee also has worked with Mentz and with tribal elders to identify
some sites in the area. "I respect their historical knowledge," he
said. McKee said it is likely that human beings have used the Beaver
Park area for 12,000 years or so -- which is also true of most of the
Black Hills.

So far, Indian groups have not tried to take the issue to court, in
part because the emergency thinning legislation exempts it from such
action. At least two environmental groups, however, are challenging
the constitutionality of that provision.

"It basically ties our hands," Mentz said. "We're all sitting back
and watching everything happen."

Mentz said he was also monitoring 35 other states considering
similar legislation. "South Dakota really blew the door open on
preservation."

Contact Bill Harlan at 394-8424 or bill.harlan@rapidcityjournal.com

=====================================================+

 

Date: Sun, 3 Aug 2003 21:28:02 EDT

ALRA action alert on Yosemite

[The American Land Rights Association is a right-wing, anti-enviro group
founded by "King of the Wise Users" Chuck Cushman... - David]

==================+++


Land Rights Network
American Land Rights Association
PO Box 400 -- Battle Ground, WA 98604
Phone: 360-687-3087 -- Fax: 360-687-2973 -- E-mail: alra@landrights.org

Web Address: http://www.landrights.org

Legislative Office: 507 Seward Square SE -- Washington, DC 20003
Phone: 202-210-2357 -- Fax: 202-543-7126 -- E-mail: landrightsnet@aol.com

Yosemite Testimony Deadline Nears

Don't allow the greens to take Yosemite away from you.

The Park Service is planning to remove 2,500 parking spaces, leaving only 550.

The NPS is removing 470 drive-in campsites in the Yosemite Valley, leaving only 330.

ALL VISITORS TO YOSEMITE VALLEY WILL HAVE TO RIDE A BUS.

This is a crazy plan. It only got this far because everybody thought it was
so crazy that they all assumed someone else would do something about it.
What a mistake.

IF the NPS is able to close down Yosemite to families, children, the
handicapped and elderly, what about parks you are close to? They'll get
rid of people there too.

NOW IS THE TIME FOR YOU TO SPEAK UP.

IT ONLY TAKES A FEW MINUTES.

You can testify and have your statement go into the official record of the hearing
held in Congress Tuesday, July 22nd by sending in your Testimony Questionnaire.

DOWNLOAD A TESTIMONY QUESTIONNAIRE AND MAIL IT TODAY.
OR FAX IT TO (360) 687-2973.

Go to www.landrights.org and download the Testimony Questionnaire.

FAX it to American Land Rights at (360) 687-2973 no later than Monday,
August 4th at 12:00 Noon.

Rep. George Radanovich introduced a bill (HR 2715) in Congress to put back
SOME of the campsites lost to the flood in 1997. The bill also restores
SOME of the parking the Yosemite Valley Plan has set for removal. The
bill makes it more difficult for the Park Service to force you to ride a bus.

The real value of HR 2715 is that it will force the Park Service to redo
the Yosemite Valley Plan.

Radanovich held the hearing in the Resources Committee for Tuesday, July 22nd.

Please encourage Rep. Radanovich with his bill but urge he and Congress
to really restore Yosemite and protect access for families and children, the
handicapped, elderly as well as climbers and hikers. That means that all
800 Valley drive in campsites must be saved. And the 3,500 parking
places in the Valley must not be reduced to 550 as is now planned.

It's clear the Park Service's Yosemite Valley Plan is a social engineering
project to reduce the visitors, make them buy inside the park, and force
people out of their cars and onto buses from remote locations, bypassing
many communities. Many people like the shuttle system in the Valley.
We're talking about hundreds of large, slow, smelly buses from 50 and 100 miles
away. After the Park Service implements this planned change and when
people find out they cannot go to Yosemite unless it is on a bus . . . .
they won't go. It has not happened yet . . . but it will unless you help
stop the Yosemite Valley Plan.

If the Yosemite Valley Plan is stopped, then you can stop the spread across
the country of these restrictive forced busing, limited camping and
parking plans at other parks.

Save Access to Yosemite -- The Yosemite Valley Plan can be and must be
overturned. Rep. Radanovich's HR 2715 can help if he really gets behind
it and you do too. But it must also be fixed.

History is in your hands. The vocal minority that wants to largely shut
down access to Yosemite is well on their way to achieving their objectives.
While your parking is being reduced from 3,500 spaces in Yosemite Valley
to 550 spaces, the Wilderness camper parking increased by 25%. Sounds like
a double standard. While drive-in campsites are being reduced from 800 to
330, walk-in campsites increase by 140% from 67 to 160.

This will happen in all parks unless you act NOW!

This is your last chance to save Yosemite Valley from the extremists.
You must not stop now. The Yosemite Valley Plan will be overturned if you
do your part.

ACTION ITEMS:

What you must do NOW!

-----1. Download your personal Testimony Questionnaire from
www.landrights.org

-----2. Download one or more of the signs that are on our website. FAX a
copy to your Congressman. Use the 800 number below to call your
Congressman to ask for his fax number.

-----3. Fax back your Testimony Questionnaire quickly.

-----4. Call Rep. George Radanovich at (202) 224-3121 or the FREE NUMBER
(800) 648-3516. Thank him but urge him to fix ALL the campsites and
parking damaged by the flood of 1997. You can send him a fax at: (202)
225-3402.

-----5. Call and fax your Congressman to urge him to cut all funding for
the Yosemite Valley Plan. While it seems like in only affects Yosemite,
you will send a signal that all anti-family actions by the Park Service must
be opposed.

Stop the massive takeover of our National Parks by those who would force
you on to a bus, close your camping and parking areas nationwide. Help keep
Madera, Mariposa and Tuolumne Counties and the Highway 41, 140 and 120
corridors in the fight with the National Park Service to restore camping,
parking and maintain freedom of access.

Your Yosemite testimony to Congress is vital. PLEASE FAX BACK YOUR
TESTIMONY QUESTIONNAIRE TODAY. The Anthrax scare in Wash. DC makes
mail slow. Use the return envelope. We'll hand deliver your testimony. The
Park Service wants to close over 70% of the parking, 60% of the campsites
and eventually force every Valley visitor to ride a bus.

PLEASE FORWARD THIS MESSAGE WIDELY.

 

=====================+++


Make your voice heard! Find out how to get Take Action Alerts
and other important Sierra Club messages by email at:

http://www.sierraclub.org/email

=====================================================+

 

Sunday, July 13, 2003

http://www.sltrib.com/2003/Jul/07132003/utah/75065.asp

Conservationists warn against Owyhee deal


By Ken Olsen
Special to The Tribune

A growing number of conservationists say giving special guarantees to
southeastern Idaho cattle ranchers in return for wilderness protection
for approximately 450,000 acres of the Owyhee canyon lands could
backfire.

Representatives of more than 30 environmental groups have written a
five-page letter to the boards of the Idaho Conservation League,
Wilderness Society and Sierra Club encouraging them to withdraw from the
so-called Owyhee Initiative. The effort was started by the Owyhee County
Commissioners two years ago. It is close to handing Idaho's congressional
delegation a bill it hopes will be introduced and passed this year.

"Striking these types of deals undermines efforts by grassroots
organizations around the country to pass strong wilderness legislation
that protects watersheds and valuable wildlife habitat," said Craig
Axford of the Utah Environmental Congress, one of three Utah groups that
signed the letter. "They are playing into the hands of the conservatives
in Congress that argue America doesn't want wilderness and strong
environmental protection -- and I think they are underestimating
America's support for wilderness."

The letter criticizes the secretive nature of negotiations between
environmentalists, ranchers and government officials. It also takes issue
with provisions to create a scientific board that would review decisions
by the U.S. Bureau of Land Management to reduce livestock grazing on
public lands.

"The creation of special interest boards with de facto authority only
moves land management further beyond the reach of the public," the letter
says.

Finally, the letter cautions that trading public land for grazing
leases -- an idea that environmental participants in the initiative say
is long dead -- could end up back in the bill at the last minute.

The Sierra Club says it's mindful of the potential pitfalls.

"Our organization is looking at the details of this effort very
critically," said Roger Singer, Sierra Club's regional representative in
Idaho. "While this type of process requires compromise, the final package
still has to improve protection for the wildlife and the landscape" in
order to gain the group's backing.

The Idaho Conservation League, meanwhile, says most of the people who
signed the letter haven't shown any interest in the Owyhee Initiative.
Others have received regular updates about the negotiations and can
hardly claim to be left out of the loop, said John McCarthy of the
Conservation League.

As to breaking dangerous new ground, the bill "isn't going to be a
Frankenstein monster not seen before," McCarthy said. "The precedents we
are setting are advantageous to conservation interests and community
interests."

That includes Owyhee County becoming the first county in Idaho to ban
off-road and off-trail use of motorcycles and similar recreational
vehicles, McCarthy said. Simultaneously, environmentalists participating
in the initiative believe they will deliver hundreds of thousands of
acres of wilderness and hundreds of miles of rivers.

In addition to the scientific review team, the Owyhee legislation is
expected to call for a board of directors and an advisory council, as
well as a science research center run by the Nature Conservancy. Idaho
Conservation League, a likely member of the oversight board, said these
features will help ensure that ranchers and other local interests won't
overwhelm public lands protections.

But a veteran of the Steens Mountain Advisory Council, a
first-of-its-kind group established by Congress to advise the BLM
regarding management of eastern Oregon lands, said his experience makes
him look upon such groundbreaking ideas "with much trepidation."

When environmentalists are close to gaining more wilderness after
such diligent effort, it's tempting to see such innovations as innocuous,
but they are not, said Jerry Sutherland of Portland, Ore., who is the
statewide environmental representative on the Steens council.

Out on the ground "these innovations can become a wild cannon," he
said. "You never know where the ball is going to land."

"If anybody on the other side of table is insisting on something
dramatic, that's never been done before, I'd run for the hills,"
Sutherland added. "It's easy to assume things are innocuous. Assume the
worst-case scenario."

In the Steens, for example, environmentalists are fighting to stop
ranchers and landowners from driving in the wilderness at will.

In that respect, "we are faced with the prospect of ending up with a
wilderness in name only," Sutherland said.

-----

Pacific Northwest journalist Ken Olsen is a 2003 Alicia Patterson
Foundation journalism fellow.

(C) Copyright 2003, The Salt Lake Tribune.

=====================================================+

 

To: <browerpower@wildnesswithin.com>
Date: Tuesday, June 17, 2003 11:54 PM

Idaho Sierra Club: we do "not oppose grazing on public lands"

The Sierra Club is promoting large areas of protected wilderness, but
Singer said the group wants to leave room for ranchers to continue
grazing cattle.

"We've absolutely agreed that ranching will continue in the Owyhees just
as it does today," he said. "The Sierra Club does not oppose grazing on
public lands."


Sierra Club seeks to protect Owyhees - 04/23/02

Environmental group supports some grazing



By Brad Hem

NAMPA -- The Sierra Club has kicked off a media capaign designed to
build support to permanently protect the Owyhee Canyonlands.

The move comes as members of a working group representing a variety of
interests in Owyhee County are making progress on a long-term plan for
the future of the canyonlands -- a rugged area of southwestern Idaho,
eastern Oregon, and northern Nevada that forms one of the largest
undeveloped and unprotected stretches of land in the lower 48 states.

"Earth Day is the perfect opportunity for people to consider what we want
to happen with Idaho's clean water, incredible wildlife and our public
lands, like the wild Owyhees," said Roger Singer, the Sierra Club's Idaho
representative. "We think this is the perfect time to draw attention to
the need to get lasting, permanent protection for this remote, rugged
wilderness so close to Boise for great hiking, hunting, fishing, camping
and whitewater rafting."

Owyhee County, home to much of the canyonlands area, has become an
epicenter of debate over how to balance traditional Western land uses,
such as grazing, with recreational uses and wilderness preservation.

For its part, the Sierra Club has bought radio ads, rented seven
billboards in the Treasure Valley -- including two in Nampa -- and will
distribute 10,000 postcards for supporters to sign and forward to U.S.
Sen. Mike Crapo. Crapo has taken the lead in helping local groups resolve
the longstanding dispute over legally protecting Owyhee lands.

Last year, the Owyhee County Commission created the Owyhee Initiative, a
diverse group working together to end the dispute. The initiative
includes environmental groups, ranchers, motorized trail-users, federal
land managers, a representative of the U.S. Air Force -- which has
training ranges in the county -- and a member of Crapo's staff.

So far, the group's meetings have been civil, and representatives --
whether they agree or not -- have come to the table with an open mind,
Owyhee Initiative Chairman Fred Grant said. He dismissed the idea that
the Sierra Club's new campaign would polarize wilderness opponents.

"We all knew that each of the members was looking out for their best
interests," Grant said. "The members understand the process and each
other's agendas."

With an eye toward having a final plan for close to 3 million acres in
Owyhee County finished in September for Crapo to present in Washington,
D.C., the initiative members are now taking turns presenting their
best-case scenarios.

Earlier this month, the conservation groups -- which include the Idaho
Conservation League, The Nature Conservancy and the Wilderness Society --
presented their plan for protecting 1.3 million acres as wilderness. The
Idaho Outfitters and Guides Association has promoted a plan that protects
230,000 acres as wilderness.

Because the initiative members have agreed to work toward a consensus
proposal that is acceptable to all the members, Grant said the final plan
will likely include a compromise on wilderness designation. Crapo has
made it clear that a final plan that does not include the interests of
all involved will not survive in Congress.

The Sierra Club is promoting large areas of protected wilderness, but
Singer said the group wants to leave room for ranchers to continue
grazing cattle.

"We've absolutely agreed that ranching will continue in the Owyhees just
as it does today," he said. "The Sierra Club does not oppose grazing on
public lands."

http://news.mywebpal.com/partners/347/public/news290284.html

=====================================================+

 

To: <browerpower@wildnesswithin.com>
Date: Tuesday, June 17, 2003 11:55 PM

Idaho Green Party corrects Sierra Club misinformation

"The Sierra Club has a national policy of not grazing land that gets less
than 12 inches of rain annually. Six inches is average in the Owyhees
making this land unsuitable and not economically viable for grazing."
- Idaho Green Party, criticizing Sierra Club's violation of its own
grazing policy in Owyhee compromise.

The Idaho Green Party is very concerned about the proposed planning the
surrounds what is known as the Owyhee Initiative. The Green Party is
dedicated to the genuine preservation of wild lands and their
irreplaceable habitats. This initiative potentially threatens the great natural
wonders of the Owyhees.

The Owyhee Initiative appears on the surface to be a compromise between
environmentalists and traditional and recreational land users to come to an
agreement on protecting the largest remote scenic and un-protected land in
the lower 48 states. In reality it is a giveaway of this public treasure to
wealthy ranchers, allowing them to maintain their government subsidized
lifestyle while simultaneously damaging the land with over grazing and
shortsighted range management ideas such as Juniper burning and Grass
Banking. The Owyhee Initiative group has excluded true environmentalists
from the table and is being used as a vehicle to further personal
careers at the expense of endangered species such as the Sage Grouse.

The largest beneficiary of Owyhees welfare ranching is none other than J.R.
Simplot whose company has the majority of the leases in the Owyhees. Our tax
money supports the wealthiest man in the state while Owyhee county has the
highest poverty rate in Idaho.

What the Owyhees need is a serious wilderness inventory to be undertaken,
and consideration given to the idea of purchasing the grandfathered grazing
leases in the Owyhees to save the land with its indigenous wildlife and
plants while simultaneously saving taxpayer money that is spent managing
these leases.

The Sierra Club has a national policy of not grazing land that gets less
than 12 inches of rain annually. Six inches is average in the Owyhees making
this land unsuitable and not economically viable for grazing. Cattle are
degrading streams, destroying wetlands, and damaging archeological sites.
The cattleman have recently lost court battles that are forcing them reduce
cattle on sensitive land and have turned to the Owyhee Initiative as a way
of turning this around.

The Idaho Green Party does not wish to see the misinformation and
unchallenged compromises lead to the ultimate destruction of what is still a
very valuable wild resource that only nature can provide when leftunfettered.

http://www.idahogreens.org/Greenweb/Issues/OwyheeInitiative.html

=====================================================+

 

To: <browerpower@wildnesswithin.com>
Date: Tuesday, June 17, 2003 1:44 PM
Subject: Another terrible enviro sell-out of wilderness

Special to The Salt Lake Tribune


Preserve-Grazing Swap Sought

By Ken Olsen

After a decade of conflict, environmentalists and cattle ranchers are
close to announcing a deal to designate more than 400,000 acres of
southern Idaho's Owyhee canyon lands as federally protected wilderness.

In return, ranchers would gain the right to outside reviews before the
federal government could reduce the number of cattle they graze on the
public lands. Ranchers could trade their grazing leases for cash or other
public land, according to a draft of the proposed deal arrived at by the
group, which calls itself the Owyhee Initiative.

The Owyhee Initiative expects to hand Idaho's congressional delegation
the terms of its pact within weeks and is confident it will pass this
year. If it clears Congress, the deal will become a model for resolving
similar conflicts across the country, the deal's brokers say.

"Most of the cattlemen feel really good about it," said Owyhee County
Commissioner Chris Salove, who grew up ranching in the area and now runs
a hardware store in Marshing, Idaho. "It's finally the tool that's going
to give them some security."

Some environmentalists share that enthusiasm.

"We're close to protecting the most wilderness-worthy stuff," said John
McCarthy of the Idaho Conservation League.

Simultaneously, the proposal is drawing intense criticism from hunters,
land trade opponents and other conservation groups -- suspicious of the
secretive feel of the negotiations and certain the most fragile areas in
the Owyhees won't be protected nor will damage from off-road
motorcyclists and cattle grazing be addressed. They also question the
wisdom of trading land for grazing privileges and warn the Owyhee
Initiative's proposal contains many special provisions that would lower
standards for wilderness protection everywhere.

"It's a Sagebrush Rebel's dream," said biologist Katie Fite, who runs the
Committee for Idaho's High Desert. "I don't think that the product that
comes out of this will resemble most people's idea of wilderness."

Contentious history: Owyhee County is a 4.9 million-acre expanse of deep
volcanic canyons churning through sage-steppe uplands and capped by
juniper forests.

Two of its major rivers carried salmon and steelhead in the days before
dams. Some of the remotest reaches of this parched outback, which extends
west into Oregon and south into Nevada, still shelter desert bighorn
sheep, elk, sage grouse and redband trout.

Two paved highways and a well-groomed gravel scenic route -- called Mud
Flat Road -- constitute most of the easy access to this territory.

Although it is within a few hours drive of the booming
Boise-Nampa-Caldwell metropolitan center, this is lost and lonely country
that attracts white-water enthusiasts for a short annual season but
otherwise is exploited primarily for raising sheep, horses and cattle.

Owyhee County became an unwilling center of attention in the 1990s when
the Air Force became interested in turning more than a million acres of
it into a practice bombing range for Mountain Home Air Force Base near
Boise. Conservationists started combing the area to gauge the potential
consequences and eventually helped trim the new bombing range to 12,000
acres plus scattered radar sites.

They lobbied then-President Clinton to create a 2.7 million-acre Owyhee
Canyon Lands National Monument and floated an alternative proposal of a
1.3 million-acre wilderness area.

Lawsuits, meanwhile, challenged the U.S. Bureau of Land Management's
grazing oversight, ultimately forcing the agency to reduce cattle numbers
on some of the public range it oversees. And noxious weeds have
increasingly consumed once productive grazing land and wildlife habitat.

Battered by these conflicts, as well as drought, poor cattle prices and
fatigue, Owyhee County two years ago invited environmental groups
including the Idaho Conservation League and the Nature Conservancy --
which owns a ranch and grazing privileges on 68,000-acres of the public
domain -- to join cattle ranchers, county commissioners and others at the
bargaining table.

"The fight had gotten so ugly, there was no other option," Owyhee County
Commissioner Salove said.

Consensus or capitulation? Owyhee Initiative members are expected to vote
this week on the legislative proposal they plan for Sen. Mike Crapo,
R-Idaho, to pilot through Congress. Ranchers are adamant that it include
a scientific review team they can turn to when they contend the BLM,
which manages 75 percent of the land in the county, is unfairly cutting
their livestock allotments.

"This group will basically be a watchdog over BLM and any other
government land manager," Salove said. "Cattlemen feel what they do can
be justified scientifically if they can get a fair review."

The BLM says it welcomes the additional review.

Other basic tenets of the agreement include a research center, probably
to be run by the Nature Conservancy, to study noxious weeds and fire
problems.

Wilderness protection would be bestowed on some of the area's canyons,
and wild and scenic status is planned for some of the rivers.

Ranchers would get assurances that wilderness designation won't limit
cattle numbers or end their ability to use motorized vehicles to maintain
their grazing allotments in the wilderness, according to the plan.

The Nature Conservancy, however, does not plan to retire its 68,000-acre
grazing permit, which would become part of the wilderness.

Still, Russ Heughins, president of Idaho Bird Hunters and a member of the
BLM area citizen advisory council, fears his constituents will lose
access to key areas.

"The hunters get nothing. The fishermen could lose too," Heughins said.

His organization is even more uncomfortable with the scientific review
team. "We don't need some county-appointed advisory committee to be
second guessing BLM decisions. It's all a stalling game."

Fite, who logged years of work for Idaho Fish and Game in the Owyhees
before joining the High Desert Committee, said only the most scenic and
least threatened areas would receive wilderness designation,
"undercutting future protection for some of the most biologically
important and truly wild areas."

Simultaneously the most fragile landscape -- a stretch nearest Boise
called the Owyhee Front -- would get no relief from off-highway vehicles.

Finally, trading public land for grazing permits cheats taxpayers, and
making it part of this deal will make it more common everywhere, said
Janine Blaeloch of the Seattle-based Western Land Exchange Project.

"It's not legitimate to trade something real -- public land -- for
something ephemeral, such as a so-called grazing right," Blaeloch said.

"If you get two or three environmental groups signing on in Idaho, the
state of Utah will turn around and say why can't we do this here."

Fear of secrecy, precedents: Opponents of the Owyhee Initiative are most
angered by what they view as secret negotiations they fear will spark a
new era of weaker wilderness protection.

"Over the winter, they put out the word that not much was happening,"
Fite said. "Meanwhile, they were making deals."

Rick Johnson, executive director of the Idaho Conservation League,
dismisses the charges.

"Everybody in the conservation community knows what's being talked
about," he said.

He also dismisses a litany of critics who say this is a diluted
wilderness bill that sets a bad national precedent.

"A precedent is something that happens that is bad," Johnson said.
"Creativity is something that happens that is good."

That's a dangerous approach, warns George Nickas, executive of Wilderness
Watch in Missoula, Mont.

"If, for the sake of expediency, we make exceptions in wilderness bills,
we make it harder to preserve the character of these wild places
forever," Nickas said. "Cheap wilderness is just that . . . easier to get
and easier to lose."


[Pacific Northwest journalist Ken Olsen is a 2003 Alicia Patterson
Foundation journalism fellow.]

-----

Salt Lake Tribune

Owyhee Initiative's Proposal Calls For:

* A Scientific Review Team, staffed by scientists selected by the
University of Idaho, to review decisions by the U.S. Bureau of Land
Management to reduce cattle numbers on the public land and any other
BLM-related issue ranchers or county residents wish to have reviewed.

* The option for ranchers to swap public lands grazing leases for
other public land or cash. This is expected to involve at least 30,000
acres of grazing land.

* The option for landowners adjoining wilderness areas to trade access
for public land or cash.

* "Occasional" motorized access to grazing areas in wilderness for
ranchers needing to fix fences and watering ponds or distribute feed or
rescue sick animals.

* Wilderness designation for about a dozen deep canyons across Owyhee
County, in the southwestern corner of Idaho totaling roughly 400,000
acres.

* Release of remaining 300,000 acres of wilderness study areas for
"multiple use."

* Wild and Scenic River designation for about 300 miles of rivers,
including a portion of the Bruneau River, the main, north and south forks
of the Owyhee River, and possibly Deep Creek.

* A noxious weed and fire research center.

* An Owyhee Initiative Board of Directors, appointed by the Owyhee
County Commissioners, to oversee the deal.


(C) Copyright 2003, The Salt Lake Tribune.

=====================================================+


To: <browerpower@wildnesswithin.com>
Date: Monday, June 16, 2003 7:43 PM

Exit Polling Data Shows Nader Helped Gore

For those of you who need some help in responding to the argument that
Nader elected Bush, the following post may be of help to you. It is from
the Green Party's national email discussion list.

======================+


Date: 6/16/03 4:55 PM
Sender: usgp-discussion-admin@lists.gp-us.org
To: usgp-discussion@lists.gp-us.org


Since the "Spoiler" issue will not go away, and people do not seem
completely persuaded by the argument that the solution to the spoiler
issue is instant runoff voting, I suggest using the following quote by Al
From, the Founder and CEO of the Democratic Leadership Counsel, taken
from the DLC report "Why Gore Lost, And How Democrats Can Come Back" in
order to deal with the spoiler issue. Al From states "The assertion
that Nader's marginal vote count hurt Gore is not borne out by polling
data. When exit pollers asked voters how they would have voted in a
two-way race, Bush actually won by a point. That was better than he did
with Nader in the race." For an overview and link to the DLC report
which absurdly argues that Gore lost because he ran as a "populist," read
below.

 

Dems Say Gore's Presidential Bid Ruined by Populist Message

By Brian Hansen

WASHINGTON, DC, January 24, 2001 (ENS) - Al Gore, the self-styled
environmental candidate in the 2000 Presidential election, lost his bid
for the White House because he campaigned on an outdated "populist"
platform that was too liberal for most Americans, according to a new
report drafted by the Democratic Leadership Council.

The report, titled "Why Gore Lost, And How Democrats Can Come Back," was
unveiled this morning by Democratic Leadership Council (DLC) officials at
a news conference at the National Press Club in Washington. The DLC's 40
page report concludes that the Democratic Party must move towards the
political right - towards the Republicans - if it wants to regain control
of Congress in 2002 and the White House in 2004.

Democrat Al Gore, who ran on an environmental platform, lost his bid for
the White House because he cast himself as a liberal, concludes a new
report released by the Democratic Leadership Council

Al From, the DLC's founder and CEO, opened the freewheeling discussion
forum this morning by arguing that Democrat Al Gore made a huge tactical
mistake by continually emphasizing that he would "fight for the people
and not the powerful" as the nation's first president of the 21st
Century.

"Gore chose a populist rather than a new Democrat message, and as a
result, voters viewed him as too liberal and identified him as an
advocate of big government," From said. "By emphasizing class warfare,
[Gore] seemed to be talking to industrial age rather than information age
America."

From said that in order to be successful in future elections, the
Democratic Party needs to forge a "new progressive majority for the
information age."

Such a coalition, From said, must "expand beyond the Democratic base"
that was borne out of the progressive movements that arose during the
first half of the 20th Century. The Democratic Party, From said, must
reach out to moderates "and even some conservatives" if it hopes to
regain power in Washington.

"Al Gore failed to put together such a new progressive coalition," From
said. "The result [was] what should have been a comfortable Gore victory
became a virtual tie."

GORE SHOULD HAVE WON EASILY WITHOUT FLORIDA

The extraordinary 2000 presidential election was a virtual dead heat
between Gore and Republican George W. Bush, the two term governor of
Texas. Though Gore narrowly won the popular vote, the two term Vice
President lost the electoral college count, and thus, the White House.

While experts have attributed Gore's loss to a host of factors, much of
the attention was focused on the state of Florida, where the vote count
was debated for weeks in the courts. In a controversial move, the U.S.
Supreme Court ultimately halted all recount efforts in the state, leaving
Bush with a razor thin margin of victory that propelled him into the
White House.

Despite lingering allegations that Gore, in fact, carried the state of
Florida, the election should not have been so close, said From.

"Given the fundamental conditions in the country, the outstanding record
of the Clinton/Gore administration and the Vice President's own record of
achievement, I believe Al Gore should have won a solid victory," said
From, noting that a host of political science models projected that Gore
would prevail by some 10 percentage points.

From noted that Gore lost every income category of voters who earned more
than $50,000 a year - the most rapidly growing part of the American
electorate. Moreover, Gore lost middle class voters by one percent, and
upper class voters by an even wider margin, From said.

Gore carried "moderate" bloc voters by eight points, but that was not
nearly enough to offset Bush's margins elsewhere, From said. Bill
Clinton, From noted, won moderate bloc voters by a whopping 24 points in
1996.

DLC DISPUTES SIGNIFICANCE OF NADER'S VOTES

From rejected the argument that the so called "populist" message was
vindicated by adding Gore's vote total to that compiled by Ralph Nader,
the insurgent Green Party Presidential Candidate. Nader, vilified as a
"spoiler" by many DLC Democrats, won about three percent of the popular
vote nationwide and more than 97,000 votes in the state of Florida - more
than enough to have won the White House for Gore.

From said that a combined Gore/Nader vote total does not justify the
soundness of the populist message, which he said was crafted to evoke an
unrealistic and imagined "specter of class warfare."

"The assertion that Nader's marginal vote count hurt Gore is not borne
out by polling data," From wrote in the DLC's report. "When exit pollers
asked voters how they would have voted in a two-way race, Bush actually
won by a point. That was better than he did with Nader in the race."

Nader, a Harvard educated attorney and a nationally known consumer
advocate, was especially critical during his campaign of the power that
corporations now wield over American citizens and the American political
system. He blasted then Texas Governor Bush as "nothing but a big
corporation disguised as a person running for President."

But Nader was no kinder towards Gore, who he repeatedly attacked on a
host of issues - including the environment. Nader campaigned on the theme
that were would be virtually no difference between Gore and Bush in terms
of their respective environmental policies - a move that infuriated the
nation's major conservation organizations.


NADER: NO REGRETS

Nader, who has long blamed the DLC for "abandoning" the Democratic
Party's progressive roots, looked on with interest today as From and
other DLC officials talked about what went wrong in the 2000 election.
Asked why he thought Gore had lost the election, Nader quipped, "He
didn't lose. He really didn't lose. The real question is, 'Why wasn't he
more victorious than he was?'"

Nader said that Gore "didn't project authenticity" during the campaign,
and that he "didn't project conviction and take a real stand" on issues
that mattered to American citizens.

"He talked populism in a very general way, but he never filled the blanks
in," Nader said.

"They're not getting the message," Nader said of the DLC, which has
become the prominent wing of the Democratic Party. "The message today is
you've got to be more like Republicans and take away their issues."

Nader maintains that for the most part, the environmental initiatives
that will be undertaken by Bush will not be substantially different from
those that would have been put forth had Gore ascended to the White
House. Spencer Abraham, Bush's new Energy Secretary, "cannot do worse
than Al Gore did by giving the auto companies eight years holiday from
fuel efficiency standards," Nader told ENS.

A Gore Presidency would have made little difference in terms of
biotechnology issues, pesticides and herbicides, and environmentally
unsound trade policies such as the North American Free Trade Agreement
(NAFTA), Nader added.

Nader acknowledged, however, that "there is a difference" between the two
parties regarding public lands issues. The Democrats, Nader said, do not
share the public lands views advocated by Gale Norton, Bush's nominee for
Interior Secretary.

Still, Nader told ENS that he harbors no regrets about his entry into the
presidential race, explaining that "our goal was a long range political
reform movement, and you build that in steps. It doesn't come overnight."

Nader said that the Green Party will provide millions of disaffected
progressive voters with a "political home," and he promised a "geometric
increase" in the number of candidates that the insurgent party will run
in coming elections.


JACKSON: IGNORING GREENS WILL "SPELL DISASTER" FOR DEMOCRATS

That is exactly what worries Congressman Jesse Jackson Jr., a Democrat
from Illinois and one of the most progressive lawmakers on Capitol Hill.
Jackson, in an exclusive interview, told ENS that he "could not disagree
more" with the DLC's assertion that Al Gore's failed presidential bid
means that the Democratic Party needs to move to the political right.

"Their comments appear to be ahistorical, and ignore a significant
reality in this past election," Jackson said. "The present DLC attitude
and disposition as evidenced by the [report] ... will only strengthen the
Green Party in 2002 and 2004, and will therefore spell certain national
disaster for the Democratic Party once again."

Jackson blamed the DLC for pushing policies such as NAFTA and the passage
of Permanent Normal Trade Relations for China, both of which he said
strengthened Nader's position in the past election. Conservation groups
were largely united in their condemnation of those initiatives,
maintaining that they would foster an economic "race to the bottom" that
would lead to widespread environmental degradation.

"Almost all of [the DNC's arguments] appear to ignore the reality that
Ralph Nader did well in Florida, and that he did well in a number of
other states," Jackson said. "So it was not Al Gore's populist message
that did him in, but it was the proven history and legacy of conservative
democrats that created a split within the Democratic party that
manifested itself in the Nader campaign."

Asked if a combined Gore/Nader vote count was indicative of a hidden
"populist majority" in the country, Jackson said, "I think it represents
an electoral victory, but I'm not totally convinced that it represents a
progressive majority - and there is a difference."


JACKSON: BOTH PARTIES TOO FAR RIGHT OF CENTER

Jackson said that both the Democratic and Republican Parties are "right
of center" in terms of their appeal to the nation's population as a
whole. More than 100 million eligible voters, he said, neglected to go to
the polls on election day because "the political options afforded to
Americans were right of center" in the campaign.

That is why Jackson sponsored a Congressional resolution to allow Green
Party Candidate Ralph Nader to participate in the Presidential debates,
he said.

"I thought [Nader] had a very important voice that was being locked out
of the process," Jackson said. "Given Mr. Gore's performance in the
debates, and given Mr. Bush's intellectual capacity, maybe the most
thoughtful person in the debates might have been Ralph Nader."

Not one of Jackson's 534 colleagues on Capitol Hill signed on to his
resolution to allow Nader into the debates. Nader filed a lawsuit against
the corporate sponsored debate commission after he was denied permission
to observe the first round in Boston, even though he maintained that he
had a valid ticket to attend the event.

"Nader in debates would have brought the country closer to the real
political center," Jackson said. "The millions of people who did not vote
might have heard something different than what they were hearing from Mr.
Gore and Mr. Bush."

Jackson decried the conservative DLC Democrats who are "rushing to the
illusion of bipartisanship" with Bush and the Republicans on Capitol
Hill. It is that conservative bipartisan coalition, he said, that allows
Nader to say that the nation has "one corporate party with two different
names."

"They're giving the country the illusion of bipartisanship, but the
reality is that millions of Americans ... are greatly disenchanted,
disturbed and disappointed with Mr. Bush's election and his cabinet
choices so far," Jackson said.

"Mr. Bush has not reached out the Congressional Black Caucus, or to the
Progressive Caucus, or to the left wing of the Democratic Party," Jackson
said. "And it's going to require two wings to fly."

Jackson told ENS that he plans to undertake a number of actions during
this Congressional session to advance a progressive agenda, including
introducing a Constitutional amendment designed to ensure a clean, safe
and sustainable environment for all Americans.

The full text of the DLC's "Why Gore Lost" report is available on the
organization's website at: http://www.ndol.org

=====================================================+

 

Date: Sunday, June 15, 2003 7:02 PM

Green Marketing: Label With a Cause

Sierra Club product marketing: Wal-Mart next?

By CLAUDIA H. DEUTSCH

THE first time a colleague suggested that Pillowtex make a line of environmentally safe bedding under the Sierra Club brand, Gretchen Dale laughed out loud.

"My first reaction was: `What? I just don't get this,' " recalled Ms. Dale, Pillowtex's senior vice president for design and new product development.

Then came her second reaction: that many people might indeed pay more for bedding that is made of organically grown cotton rather than synthetic blends, that is colored with vegetable dyes instead of formaldehydes and heavy metals and that is filled with replenishable resources like wool. Pillowtex, which had sales of $934.9 million last year, signed on as a Sierra Club licensee.

"People may well realize that what's not healthy for the environment is not healthy for them," she said. "A Sierra Club line could well appeal to those educated, upper-income people that our regular products don't always reach."

Maybe so, but Sierra Club pillows and mattress pads? Wait, there's more, including Sierra Club coffee and tea, Sierra Club toys, Sierra Club hats, gloves, jackets. All start moving to stores in the next month or so and should be on the shelves by fall.

"Our products will make it possible to create a total Sierra Club lifestyle," said Johanna O'Kelley, the director of licensing for the club, which is 111 years old.

Ms. O'Kelley and her licensees are gambling that the club's two-pronged mission " to lobby Washington to protect the environment while holding wilderness treks to help people enjoy it " has given its name a panache that will work not only on the calendars and books it has sold for decades, but on myriad seemingly unrelated products.

"Organic products, things that you don't throw away, such things fit right in with our values," said Carl Pope, the club's executive director, who added that he expected the products to bring in $1 million in the first year " enough to increase the club's lobbying by 20 percent. "We can raise money even as we promote environmentally conscious consumption," he said.

These days, the money is probably paramount. Nonprofit groups face very tough times, said Kurt Aschermann, marketing vice president at the Boys and Girls Clubs of America, which is also looking for new ways to parlay its name into more financing. "Personal portfolios are down, foundation portfolios are down, unemployment is up; this is the worst time to raise money. Any charity that still says `hands off to commercial ventures' is nuts."

Because the Sierra Club is an advocacy group, donations to it are not tax-deductible. Its licensing contracts call for it to receive royalties of 5 percent to 20 percent of the retail price of each product.

But will the products sell? Specifically, does the Sierra Club brand carry enough oomph to command a premium price " a likelihood, because environmentally friendly products are normally more costly to make than the conventional products with which they compete?

The research is encouraging. Mr. Aschermann cited studies that show that three-quarters of consumers will pay more for a product if it is associated with a nonprofit group they care about. And Ms. O'Kelley noted other studies that indicate that two-thirds of consumers consider themselves environmentalists.

Still, it is not a sure thing. In the late 1980's, the club's name appeared on such disparate products as screen savers, pocket knives and T-shirts. The products hit the stores " and stayed there. When contracts ran out, few manufacturers renewed. "Our name on those items just didn't help sell them," Mr. Pope said.

This time, rather than slap its name on existing products, the club is contracting with companies to create products that it deems worthy of its name. Its licensing program will include direct advocacy " for example, most product packages come with unstamped postcards that are addressed to the Senate majority leader, Bill Frist, and ask for protection for Alaskan forests.

But the ultimate goal is to associate the Sierra Club brand with high-quality products, not just a feel-good cause. "If people think Sierra Club products are cool, maybe they'll join the club, too," Mr. Pope said.

For the last year or so, Ms. O'Kelley has been looking for untapped market niches. Yes, Starbucks sells shade-grown coffee, while other companies sell coffee that was cultivated by labor-friendly methods. The Sierra Club will sell coffees meeting both of those criteria, and will sell organic tea as well.

Other companies sell sheets printed with pictures of wolves and trees; the Sierra Club sheets will have muted, almost watercolor-like images. It is easy to find a fleece jacket, but not one with care instructions printed on the fabric in organic inks.

"Consumers are likely to pay more for an organic peach, but not necessarily for an organic fabric," acknowledged Roger Kase, president of Isda & Company, which will make most of the Sierra Club apparel. "So we're being careful to offer colors they don't usually find elsewhere."

Still, the manufacturers are not taking much of a gamble. They can make and distribute the Sierra Club products in their existing plants and distribution networks, and they will pay royalties to the Sierra Club only on products that sell. Moreover, manufacturers who come up with a new way to make an environmentally friendly product keep the patent.

The Sierra Club, by contrast, is taking a big risk. If customers are dissatisfied with a product, they will see its name on the label. "People who are disappointed with products could stop supporting the club, and that could mean a boycott not only of products but of membership," said Paul N. Bloom, a marketing professor at the University of North Carolina's Kenan-Flagler Business School.

The flip side " success " is also scary. "How do they protect the brand if their products catch on, and inferior knockoffs appear on street corners?" asked Michael Watras, president of Straightline International, which consults on branding.

Mr. Bloom adds another downside: "Donors might figure that, with products bringing in revenues, the club doesn't need their money."

Michael Draznin, managing director of the McKinney Communications Group, even worries about a backlash from the advocacy postcards. "They are telling people that, by buying their product, they are buying into an issue that they may not personally support," he warned.

 
OF course, problems can lurk even when a nonprofit group just lets a manufacturer publicly support its cause. If the manufacturer's name is tainted with scandal, the nonprofit group can be tarred by implication. And even when a group does not specifically endorse a product as environmentally sound, many consumers think that such endorsement is implied.

Indeed, the Nature Conservancy has taken much heat for linking its name to companies or products whose only environmental angle is their support of the conservancy. James R. Petterson, a conservancy spokesman, says that it "has never made claims about the environmental efficacy of the products that carry our name," but that its board is "reviewing all our policies with regard to cause-related marketing." Not all of the Sierra Club's products are environmentally pure, either. Pillowtex uses nonorganic fibers for many comforters to prevent the fillers from migrating through the cover fabric. And Mr. Kase, the manufacturer, said the club recognized that he had to use synthetics for some items. "They are an advocacy group, yes, but they live in a practical world," he said.

Mr. Pope acknowledges the problems. "We will probably make mistakes and, sure, I worry about that," he said. Still, the worries aren't stopping him from dreaming. Five years down the road? "Don't be surprised if you see a Sierra Club couch." 


Copyright 2003 The New York Times Company

=====================================================+

 

Date: Wednesday, June 11, 2003 12:13 AM

Rocky Flats Nuclear Factory to Become Wildlife Refuge

By Leland Rucker

BROOMFIELD, Colorado, June 6, 2003 (ENS) - Sixteen miles from Denver, the
highly radioactive plutonium remains of the former Rocky Flats nuclear
weapons plant are being packaged up and shipped off to South Carolina, and
officials say the most dangerous material will be off the site by year's end.

The land is now the subject of cleanup, and is known as Rocky Flats
Environmental Technology Site. In 2006, it will likely be the Rocky Flats
Wildlife Refuge.

Around the clock cleanup of Rocky Flats is now underway, and government
officials and contractors are starting to look at a closing date and what
will happen afterwards.

Some 2.1 million people live within a 50 mile radius of the plutonium
contaminated site, with a predicted population increase of 30 percent by
2023. Many of those citizens take an interest in what is taking place at
Rocky Flats.

On Thursday the Rocky Flats Citizens Advisory Board was briefed on two
issues - one affecting the immediate cleanup and the other concerning the
future of the site. The 25 member board provides independent, community
recommendations on the Rocky Flats cleanup, and represents a range of
government officials and community members.

The board was updated on a change proposed by the Kaiser-Hill Company, the
contractor in charge of the cleanup, concerning the Building 771/774
Decommissioning Operations Plan.

[Workers at Rocky Flats have drained the last of the plutonium from tanks in
Building 771.]

Building 771, a major plutonium processing facility, and Building 774, a
companion facility for waste treatment of liquid process wastes, were
constructed in 1951, Kaiser-Hill spokesman Chris Gilbreath told the advisory board.

Among the most heavily polluted of the buildings at Rocky Flats, the two
story structure poses serious site specific cleanup hazards because it was
built into a steep hill that leaves concrete floors in areas between 16 and
30 feet below the proposed final grade.

Though much of the building eventually will be demolished, most of the south
wall and the basement slab will be left in place and buried, Kaiser-Hill proposed.

Cleanup operations are farther along in Building 771/774 than in any other
industrial building on the site, Gilbreath explained. All 240 glove boxes
and 251 tanks have been removed, and all liquid systems have been drained.

More than 275 drums of transuranic waste have been removed from former
processing tanks, and "all but one of 12 filter plenums have been
decontaminated and/or dismantled," Gilbreath said.

Structural decontamination has begun, with demolition expected by April
2004. "We are one of the first to be demolished," he said. "We are
decontaminated. Everything has been gutted. We have only a few ventilation
areas left."

The modification Kaiser-Hill is proposing seeks permission to apply the same
contamination standards to the slabs of concrete that will be buried in the
hill portion as those applied to contaminated subsurface soil.

Kaiser-Hill's position is that contamination on concrete below certain
levels is not going anywhere and poses little threat to human health and the
environment.

"What they have developed and studied is that plutonium and americium in
subsurfaces deeper than six feet do not migrate," Gilbreath said in an interview.

"Based on those results, we said, 'if these are not migrating, why are we
going after it? Let's go after more surface contamination.' We took the
philosophy that if the experts are telling us it is not going anywhere, and
I am 25 feet below grade, what is the value?"

Board members questioned the reliability of the data that says burying
concrete with more radiation than current levels permit is wise.

Kaiser-Hill spokesmen Gilbreath and Bob Davis, while saying not all modeling
is complete, told the board that their research indicates that it will be
within a safe level.

If its proposal to leave the contaminated concrete in place is accepted,
Kaiser-Hill estimates the savings at between two and three million dollars
and a couple months of cleanup time, Gilbreath said.

Board members questioned whether there was any motivation for the change in
plans other than to save the contractor money and time on the cleanup.

Gilbreath stressed that safety was an underlying concern. Trying to clean
the concrete slabs is difficult and potentially the most dangerous work, he said.

"Honestly, it will save money and time, sure. But we are most concerned
about safety," he said. "The last thing we want to do at this point in the
cleanup is have someone get crushed or squeezed cutting out a chunk of
concrete," he said.

When the site is closed it will be converted to the Rocky Flats National
Wildlife Refuge. On Thursday, the board also heard about four alternative
management plans for the refuge.

The four plans range in scale from one that operates the site under the
current plan to one that allows for a variety of human activity, including
horseback riding and some hunting on the refuge, said Dean Rundle of the
U.S. Forest Service.

The four alternatives are being developed as part of the Comprehensive
Conservation Plan, a 15 year program to provide long range guidance and
direction for the wildlife refuge. It incorporates public comments gathered
last year about purposes and goals that should be applied to the Rocky Flats
site in the future.

Board members raised the question of what the radiation levels would be once
the government finished its cleanup, but officials of all organizations
present declined to take up the issue.

Rundle said that none of the four plans would address the area where the
plant's main buildings are located, known as "the blob" and controlled by
the Department of Energy. All four plans call this area a "potential
riparian and native grass restoration area."

Located on the high plains northwest of downtown Denver, the original
nuclear weapons factory was built on a site dominated by tallgrass prairie,
areas of high plains and some riparian areas. Using vegetation, soil and
landscape as a framework, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has designated
three management zones for planning purposes.

Xeric tallgrass prairie dominates the western part of the site and provides
habitat for plant and animal species. Other grassland communities are found
along the ridges and valley floors, while rolling high plains landscapes are
seen along the eastern edges. Several drainages characterized by trees,
shrubs and grasses form habitat for birds and mammals, including the
Preble's meadow jumping mouse, federally listed as threatened.

Alternative A - No Action, Rundle said, would keep the refuge working under
the terms of the current "Rock Creek Reserve Integrated Natural Resources
Management Plan" adopted in 2000. Stewardship would be the guiding
management principle. Most roads and some stream crossings would be removed,
and no public facilities would be provided. Except for the barn, which would
be stabilized, the structures of the old Lindsay Ranch along Rock Creek on
the site would be allowed to disintegrate.

Rundle said that Alternative C - Ecological Restoration - is similar to
Alternative A. This plan would return the area to pre-settlement conditions
and plant it with native vegetation. Though no one knows what the exact
ecological conditions were 200 years ago, Rundle said, the agency intends to
use its best science to approximate what it was like. "Under this plan,
there would be maximum road and trail and stream crossing removal," he said.

Under Alternative C, public access would be limited to a single road from
state highway 93 along the western edge and a short trail to an overlook.
Any other access would be by arrangement only. The Lindsay Ranch structures
would be documented and removed.

Alternative B - Wildlife, Habitat & Public Use, Rundle said, is preferred by
the agency, and would be the best balance. "It allows the big five public
uses," said Rundle, "hunting, fishing, observation and photography,
environmental education and interpretation."

He said that the agency responded to a public desire for connectivity and
Alternative B would connect with walking and biking trails in several
directions. Some trails would be open in winter, he said, and the southern
half of the refuge would be open in winter months for photographers and
those who wish to get off regular trails, when it would not disturb nesting birds.

Hunting activities would be highly restricted and limited to certain
weekends, he said. When board members questioned whether that would be safe
for pedestrians and cyclists, Rundle said that the site would be closed to
other activities during those periods. No pets would be allowed under any of
the alternatives, Rundle said.

Alternative D - Public Use is similar to Alternative B but would allow an
even higher level of public use, and like B, would include a visitor center.
A total of 17 miles of public roads would be included in this plan, with
some trails open to horseback riders. He said that only under this option,
the agency would consider accepting imported prairie dogs.

Several board members questioned where in any of the plans signage is
provided that would include an explanation of previous and current radiation
contamination levels. Members said the signs are necessary to give people as
much information as possible so they might make their own informed decisions
about entering the former nuclear weapons site.

All alternatives can be achieved under current proposed budgets, but Rundle
said that Alternative A would be the cheapest and D the most expensive.

http://ens-news.com/ens/jun2003/2003-06-06-06.asp

=====================================================+

 

Date: Wednesday, May 28, 2003 7:07 PM

Illegal redwood logging conducted under Davis administration

Looking for someon to blame for the massive illegal logging of old-growth
redwood forest in northern California? Gray Davis, two-time Sierra Club
endorsee, has made it his business to make sure that the crooks at
Pacific Lumber who donate to his campaigns got away with deforesting one
of the last stands of ancient redwoods.

And let's not forget that the Sierra Club stood by while Davis,
Feinstein, and Babbitt (all Democrats!) cut the original disastrous deal
with P-L, handing over hundreds of millions of public tax dollars to P-L
when the company bosses should have been hauled off to jail...

------------------------------------------

Environmentalists also asserted that the ruling shows the state has
been far too cozy with Pacific Lumber and has failed to ensure that
its logging plans protect the forest. The company has been a major
political donor to Gov. Gray Davis and Atty. Gen. Bill Lockyer in
recent years.

------------------------------------------

Los Angeles Times

May 20, 2003

Rulings Could Stymie Logging

Failure to file plan with state may undercut Pacific Lumber's permits to cut redwoods

By Miguel Bustillo, Times Staff Writer

The future of Pacific Lumber Co.'s highly controversial redwood
timber operations in Northern California fell into jeopardy Monday
when a judge ruled that the state Department of Forestry had never
properly given the company approval for its logging plans.

In a prepared statement attributed to Robert E. Manne, the company's
president and CEO, Pacific Lumber said the rulings "could clearly
have a significant impact on our company." Company officials declined
to comment further, saying lawyers were reviewing the rulings and
weighing "all legal actions" the company could take.

Four years ago, after a bitter and highly publicized fight, the
company received $490 million from the state and federal governments
to set aside a 7,500-acre grove of ancient redwoods in an area known
as the Headwaters Forest. In return, it was supposed to submit a
blueprint for responsibly logging its remaining 211,000 acres, home
to the largest stands of the majestic trees not in parks or
preserves. The plan was supposed to govern logging for 120 years.

California officials said they had approved the so-called sustained
yield plan in 1999, but no such document was ever formally filed, at
least not in a comprehensive fashion that a member of the public
could read and review, Superior Court Judge John J. Golden concluded
in two rulings issued Monday in Humboldt County.

The state permits that Pacific Lumber received for logging portions
of its land, altering wild streams and harming endangered seabirds
such as the marbled murrelet were supposed to be based on the larger
plan. Because the plan was never properly submitted, the judge
indicated, those permits could now be invalidated.

Although lawyers for the state filed an 80,000-page record with the
court, "we could never find the sustained yield plan in all those
pages, and we learned during the first day of trial that they never
filed that plan," said Berkeley attorney Sharon Duggan, who argued
one of the cases on behalf of the Sierra Club and the Environmental
Protection Information Center.

"Here we are, four years later, and they have been cutting an
incredible amount of old-growth redwoods, far more than was ever
envisioned."

The other case was filed by the United Steelworkers of America, which
represents timber workers. The union argued that the company's
logging plans would not preserve the long-term health of the forest,
hurting the future economic livelihoods of the workers.

"The state did a poor job of protecting our natural resources," said
David Foster, the union's director for the 13-state region that
includes California.

The rulings, which are expected to become final next month, could
throw Pacific Lumber's operations into limbo.

"Nobody paid attention to these lawsuits, but what they basically
said was that these guys were cutting illegally," said plaintiffs'
attorney Joseph W. Cotchett, who has been working pro bono on cases
against Pacific Lumber. "Everyone laughed at them," he said. "But no
one is laughing today."

California officials declined to comment Monday, saying they needed
time to determine the ramifications of the rulings.

"We want to take a very close look at this tentative decision," said
Stanley Young, spokesman for the California Resources Agency, which
oversees the Department of Forestry. "We will await the final
decision in June."

Environmentalists, however, argued that, in addition to invalidating
permits, the judge's decision could bolster a hotly disputed fraud
case brought against Pacific Lumber by Humboldt County Dist. Atty.
Paul V. Gallegos. He alleges that the company concealed information
from the Department of Forestry on the potential for its logging
plans to cause landslides.

Environmentalists also asserted that the ruling shows the state has
been far too cozy with Pacific Lumber and has failed to ensure that
its logging plans protect the forest. The company has been a major
political donor to Gov. Gray Davis and Atty. Gen. Bill Lockyer in
recent years.

The ruling "raises very serious questions about the objectivity of
the state," said Paul Mason of the Sierra Club. "They have approved
an astronomical amount of logging of old-growth redwoods."

The 1999 deal on Headwaters did not come close to ending the
controversy over Pacific Lumber's redwood logging. The debate over
the company's operations has pitted older north-coast residents, who
depend on the timber industry, against environmentalists and newer
arrivals.

Copyright 2003 Los Angeles Times

=====================================================+



Date: Saturday, May 17, 2003 2:00 PM
Subject: [muir] Palm Beach Post Editorial: Insider trading infects Nature Conservancy

Editorial

Insider trading infects Nature Conservancy

Palm Beach Post

Thursday, May 15, 2003

The Nature Conservancy, whose brand name is right up there with Good
Housekeeping, has been running a scam worthy of Enron. As described last
week in a Washington Post series titled "Big Green," the environmental
charity bought pristine lands, then sold them at a discount to trustees
for fabulous private-home sites.

Nature Conservancy President and CEO Steven J. McCormick whined that the
Post had "painted a distorted picture" and "misrepresented our motives
and methods." Wrong response. The Nature Conservancy, with 1 million
members and $3 billion in assets, has done a tremendous amount of good
throughout its 52 years in places that include Palm Beach County. Having
been caught, dishing out lame excuses only makes the damage worse. There
is no excuse for the so-called "conservation buyer" deals, which worked
this way:

The conservancy would buy an unspoiled property -- such purchases are the
group's specialty, as its name implies -- then sell the land at a
much-reduced price to a buyer who agreed to development restrictions. No
problem so far. But in many cases, the buyer was a Nature Conservancy
insider who had contributed to the organization an amount that happened
to match the "discount." The buyer then claimed an IRS deduction for the
"gift."

In effect, taxpayers subsidized the sweetheart purchases. The development
"restrictions" were carefully written to allow construction of the
buyer's grandiose dream home. Beneficiaries included Oracle software
executives and David Letterman, who acquired property on Martha's
Vineyard. The Washington Post also described failed business ventures and
environmentally damaging attempts to drill for gas on Nature Conservancy
land. The charity also gave Mr. McCormick a $1.5 million loan for a low
rate that the group tried to conceal.

Palm Beach County residents might be concerned because the Nature
Conservancy has acted as a broker for sensitive land acquired in
voter-approved bond issues. Fortunately, those deals are different from
-- and did not figure in -- the deals described in "Big Green."

The county gives the Nature Conservancy a 1 percent commission and has
paid the charity $243,662 since voters approved $150 million in bonds
four years ago to purchase environmentally sensitive lands. The
conservancy, justifiably praised for its negotiating skill -- it also
brokered land purchases from the county's similar 1991 bond issue -- has
lost interest in county work as big deals have given way to smaller
purchases, prompting the county to add the Conservation Fund as an agent.

Mr. McCormick complained that The Washington Post "dismissed our
accomplishments for the environment." In fact, his land-buying schemes
have done that.

=====================================================+



Date: Saturday, May 17, 2003 10:26 PM
Subject: Iraq's Slide Into Lawlessness Squanders Good Will for U.S.

Iraq's Slide Into Lawlessness Squanders Good Will for U.S.

May 18, 2003

By EDMUND L. ANDREWS and SUSAN SACHS

New York Times

BAGHDAD, Iraq, May 17 - It was another bad week for Karim
W. Hassan, director general of Iraq's electricity commission.

Looters had already pilfered underground cables, carted off
computers that regulate power distribution, stolen 25 of
the guards' 30 patrol cars, emptied warehouses of spare
parts, ransacked substations and shot up transmission lines
across the country's electric grid.

Then, his men reported, armed bandits stole the only cable
splicer in central Iraq, needed to repair countless
vandalized electric lines.

On top of that, another group of gunmen stole his own car.
The upshot: yet more delays in restoring electricity in
this city, weeks after the war ended.

"Give me security," said Dr. Hassan, speaking for many
Iraqis, "and I'll give you electricity."

The power company's problems are but one example of how
Iraq's descent into lawlessness has stalled its return to
normalcy, increased the costs of reconstruction and
squandered much of the good will Iraqis felt for their new
American overseers.

In the space of a few weeks, awe at American power in war
has been transformed into anger at American impotence in
peace. A crime wave, increasingly the work of organized
gangs far better armed than the skeleton Iraqi police
forces, has kept citizens in a peculiar state of limbo,
free yet fearful.

Delays in restoring electricity and telecommunications have
kept businesses closed. Banks, looted of at least $500
million in deposits, have yet to reopen. Traders, attacked
daily by armed bands on the highway linking Iraq to Jordan,
are reluctant to send much needed imports.

Iraq's government, the country's biggest employer, is
essentially shut down, aggravating unemployment.

During the bombing of Iraq, the American military took
pains to limit damage to the country's infrastructure. The
intent, commanders said repeatedly, was to ensure that
Iraqis could speedily resume a normal life once Saddam
Hussein's dictatorship was eliminated.

But the wholesale plundering of government property, often
under the eyes of American soldiers in the capital, has
largely undone those good intentions. Iraq's new
administrators now say the cost of reconstruction, in both
time and money, will be much higher than expected.

"The impact of the looting was greater than we probably
realized at the time," said Col. John Peabody, an Army
engineer charged with securing public utility sites.
"Everything of value to making things run was stolen."

Military commanders have said they were surprised by the
scale of the initial pillaging but were, in any case,
preoccupied with securing the city. In Washington, in the
glow of the war's successful finish, the dismantling of
Iraq's government buildings attracted little interest.

As the looting evolved into brazen daylight carjackings,
revenge killings and armed robberies, a few American
officers on the ground took the initiative to impose order
on individual neighborhoods and towns.

But overall, the military's most senior people resisted
using their combat forces as crime-busters, except when
opportunities arose to seize weapons. Meanwhile, local
police officers returning to work were permitted to carry
only sidearms. Most have refused to confront criminals or
even stay in their looted station houses overnight.

L. Paul Bremer III, Iraq's newly appointed civilian
administrator, said after arriving here last week that he
recognized the need to restore law and order. Army officers
said a debate was under way over whether to allow the Iraqi
police to have AK-47's. A new infusion of American military
police officers is on hand to respond to reports of violent
crime - if they are summoned by the intermittent Army
patrols on Baghdad streets.

Only in recent days, long after the value of using American
soldiers as guards became clear, have tanks taken positions
outside government buildings. But most ministries have
already been gutted of desks, light fixtures, computers,
air- conditioners, records and toilets.

Iraqi frustration at the power vacuum burst out this week,
when Baghdad city workers pleaded with the American-run
Office of Reconstruction and Humanitarian Assistance to at
least issue a public announcement that citizens must obey
the law.

A senior official of the reconstruction office said a
statement, to be read on a local American-financed radio
station, was being prepared, although it was not clear what
laws were now in effect in Iraq. For many Iraqis, the
damage has been done.

"We used to have a brutal dictatorship that controlled
everything," said Mahmoud Ahmed Uthman, chairman of Al
Khair Financial Investments Company, an investment fund
that has been active here for years. "When the government
collapsed, there was nothing left except a great emptiness.
And that emptiness has been filled with chaos."

The Road to Amman

Smooth and six-lanes wide for much of
its course, Highway 11 from Baghdad to Jordan's capital,
Amman, is Iraq's most important land route to the rest of
the world.

These days, it is also an illustration of how crime is
crippling the recovery of commerce.

One day last week, less than an hour west of Baghdad, three
hijackers shot out the windshield of Abdulnasser Rafiq's
GMC. After forcing him to stop, they stole the car and
lobbed a grenade at him and his passenger as they drove
away.

"It used to be that they would just take your money and
whatever you had inside," said Mr. Rafiq, who has been
ferrying merchants to and from Jordan for eight years. "I
paid $20,000 for that truck, and they'll try to sell it for
$1,000. I'd be happy to pay $1,000 myself just to get the
truck back."

Attacks like these occur almost daily, and they have
reduced traffic on the highway to a trickle. Iraq's
reconstituted police forces do not patrol it. Many officers
admit they feel too outgunned by the criminal gangs to
mount serious investigations.

As a result, travel between Baghdad and Amman is limited to
those who are either very determined or very armed.

For the lucky few, like companies bringing in gasoline or
other key supplies from Jordan, American Army units with
six Humvees have begun escorting convoys of trucks.

Even that protection is limited. Units of the Third
Infantry Division escorted four civilian gasoline tankers
from the Jordanian border to south of Baghdad. But they
refused to escort the tankers on the equally dangerous trip
back to Jordan.

"The bandits don't know whether my truck is loaded or not,"
said Hatam Suleiman, a Jordanian driver, as he waited for
his convoy to be handed off from one set of Army escorts to
another. "Next time, if I don't get protection in both
directions, I'm not coming back."

To the casual observer, many of the markets in downtown
Baghdad seem as thriving as ever. Vendors display imported
products aimed at postwar coping: satellite telephones, to
substitute for Iraq's obliterated telephone system;
satellite television dishes, which were illegal under Mr.
Hussein's rule; portable kerosene stoves, because the usual
cooking gas is hard to find.

But on closer inspection, the situation is abnormal. Scores
of stores, looted immediately after the war ended, are
still shuttered. Those that have reopened close before
dark. Vendors have armed themselves with pistols and
automatic weapons. Sales are down sharply.

Largely because of the initial wave of lootings at
government ministries and businesses, millions of Iraqis
have not returned to work or received any wages beyond a
one-time $20 payment for emergency needs. But fear has kept
many shoppers, especially women, at home.

"People are afraid to come here," said Muhammad Qassim
Mustapha, a spice trader in the heart of Baghdad's huge
Showja wholesale market. Between housewives who are afraid
to shop and restaurant owners who are afraid to reopen, he
said, spice sales are running about one-tenth their prewar
rate.

Corporations and foreign investors are even more paralyzed.
In the Jordanian port city of Aqaba, which serves as a
major gateway for exports to Iraq, shipping executives say
cargo is piling up in warehouses because customers are too
nervous to move it across the border.

Without predictable rules, or any ability to protect
property from theft or seizure, even the most enthusiastic
believers in a new Iraq say it is still to unstable major
commitments.

"How can you do business if you cannot ensure the security
of your warehouses and factories?" asked Saad al-Janabi,
whose family group owns scores of businesses in Iraq. As a
result of the original looting, compounded by new security
fears and the lack of electricity, Mr. Janabi said, none of
the family's factories have yet resumed operation.

Assim al-Janabi, Saad's father and patriarch of the family
industrial group, has yet to return to Iraq after fleeing
to Dubai shortly before the war broke out.

"I told him it's just too dangerous," said the younger Mr.
Janabi.

Brick by Brick by Brick

Colonel Peabody remembers the day last month when he first
visited the electricity authority's control center in
Baghdad, which used computers to modulate power across the
country to prevent crashes.

"The floor was covered with three inches of paper, debris
and glass," he said. "The computers were stolen or
destroyed."

In retrospect, the colonel said, American troops should
have protected the center - "had we known about it."

Now the job of putting the system back together again falls
to a committee of Iraqi and American engineers who meet
several times a week in a building on the vast grounds of
one of Mr. Hussein's palace compounds. On the wall they
have taped up a diagram of the country's electric grid,
with two dotted lines snaking around the system to indicate
what is damaged.

Electric power remains intermittent in much of Baghdad. The
electric company workers who shut down neighborhood
substations to ease the load have been attacked by
residents. Others are too frightened to go to work, worried
that thieves will come seeking whatever equipment remains.

Soldiers and tanks have been assigned to deliver air
conditioners to the plants, where they are needed to keep
instruments cool. They have been deployed to accompany the
cranes that go out to repair transmission towers.

"I don't worry about getting stuff in here safely," said
Colonel Peabody. "I worry about it getting looted once it
gets here."

While some of the damage to the electrical grid resulted
from the war, as advancing troops plowed past power lines,
most of the difficulties are the result of looting,
according to Dr. Hassan, the senior Iraqi electricity
official. "They are taking anything," he said.

Like other government properties, where looters still can
be seen disassembling the buildings brick by brick, the
electrical system has been methodically vandalized.

But because the system is a hodgepodge of Chinese, French,
Russian, American and other parts, replacing what is stolen
has not been easy - since spare parts were also stolen.

Last month, Army engineers were thrilled to find a private
construction company here with supplies of lumber and other
materials needed to start repairs. But, two weeks ago, a
gang of thieves broke into that company's warehouse and
cleaned it out.

Everyone attending the regular committee meetings agrees
that the only way to restore power is security - that, and
money.

But for the moment, military officers say they do not
believe it is practical or possible to put armed guards at
every one of the 600 electrical stations, substations and
transformers in the country, as well as nearly 420
additional water and sewage system sites.

As a stopgap measure, they are trying to get uniforms,
badges and AK-47 assault rifles for 125 new guards, who
will work in two shifts, for priority sites in the electric grid.

Imprisoned at Home

When American forces crushed Mr. Hussein's government in
early April, few people were more delighted than Basir, a
wealthy architect in one of Baghdad's best suburbs.

Yet today, he and his family remain imprisoned by fear in
their own home. Pale and fatigued even at 10 in the
morning, his mood has soured.

Ten days ago, armed men ambushed and robbed Basir and his
wife, Lubna, as they were walking outside their house. Five
days ago, assailants shot and stabbed to death Lubna's
uncle in his garden at 8:30 a.m. Lubna's aunt, Faiza, is
still hospitalized with a bullet wound to her head.

"How is it that the United States could plan every single
step in this war so perfectly, and then be so ignorant
about what is happening now?" said Basir, who spoke on the
condition that his family name not be published.

Lubna, who works for the International Telecommunications
Union, listened quietly and then vented her own anger.

"People are already beginning to say, `Why don't we go back
to Saddam?' " she said. "At least it was more safe, more
peaceful."

Such attitudes are mild in comparison to the frustration
that many less affluent and less Westernized Iraqis
express.

Rich or poor, people seem shocked as the initial wave of
postwar looting turned into the plague of chronic street
crime. Conspiracy theories about American motives abound,
providing some distraction but doing little to ease the
paralysis that has gripped people like Basir and his
family.

Although the family lives on a pretty street in the
affluent neighborhood of Jadiria, they are so frightened
that they drive rather than walk the 50 yards to their
next-door neighbor's home. They said they left the house
only when absolutely necessary, and they have bricked up
their front window rather than replace the plate glass that
was shattered during the war.

"Even if they couldn't control it in the beginning, they
aren't doing anything about it now," said Basir of the
Americans. "What's happening here does not comply with any
Western standards, not even the standards of Albania."
===================================================+

 

Date: Wednesday, April 23, 2003 4:08 AM
Subject: Washington Post's negative-spin article on N. Calif. tree sits

A Matter of Life and Limb

These Protesters Put Their Bodies On the Line. But Are Their Heads In the Clouds?

By William Booth
Washington Post Staff Writer
Tuesday, April 22, 2003; Page C01

FRESHWATER, Calif.

It's not like you just telephone the Earth First! offices and say:
Take me to your leader. Doesn't work like that. Messages are left for
activists who insist they be known only by their "forest names." For
Remedy or Wren. For Lodgepole or Shunka. Radical environmentalists
and their affinity groups don't work in cubicles. They couch-surf.
When they're not living in trees.

It is Shunka who leaves his pager number. The meet is set: parking
lot at the organic food co-op in Arcata, the trippy little college
town in the far north California woods a six-hour drive from San
Francisco.

And here comes a junker compact now, filled with tie-dye and fleece.
A rear side window rolls down and a bearded face appears. Shunka
looks like an extra from the set of the "Lord of the Rings" trilogy,
Frodo's hairier cousin, and he shouts out: "You the dude from The
Washington Post?" and we are. "Right on. Get in your car and follow
us, man, because it's going down."

And away we go. The sheriff's deputies are raiding the tree-sits.

Up in the hills, the skinny kids are rolling video-cams and speaking
into walkie-talkies and swinging around the trees like squirrel
monkeys, and the beefy cops are leading their handcuffed charges
away. The woods are filled with war whoops, chain saws buzzing and
shrieks ("Agggg, they're torturing me!") and taunts ("What happens
when we all have to live in a giant plastic bubble?").

This is the front line behind the Redwood Curtain: Humboldt County,
famous for Green Party-majority city councils and third-generation
lumberjacks, chewy buds of homegrown marijuana and big hoary
redwoods. Trees so fat that one trunk can fill the bed of a logging
truck, enough timber to build a thousand hot tubs, a single tree
worth $30,000 or $40,000 or more.

In its broadest strokes, what's happening here is straightforward.
Pacific Lumber Co., now a wholly owned subsidiary of Charles
Hurwitz's Houston-based Maxxam Corp., is harvesting redwoods,
including some ancient trees. Its public relations officers point out
that Palco is certified as a "sustainable" timber company, vital for
the regional economy, removing a renewable resource of high-quality
wood products desired by the home-building industries from Palco's
own private 200,000 acres. The company says it has set aside or sold
to the state and federal governments most of its oldest groves of
trees.

The Earth First! take is less charitable: that Maxxam and junk-bond
timber baron Hurwitz took a local and respected company and turned it
into a cash cow, accelerating the logging, clear-cutting hills too
steep, fouling streams, choking salmon and massacring ancient
redwoods. They want the clear-cuts stopped, the oldest trees saved in
new reserves or on company lands.

The protesters are not alone. In February, Humbolt County District
Attorney Paul Gallegos filed civil suit against Palco, charging
unfair and fraudulent business practices in obtaining government
approval to cut down 100,000 trees on unstable slopes. The DA is
seeking injunctive relief and millions in penalties. The company is
denying the charges.

In the past few months, as Palco began harvesting in new sections,
the woods here have been filling with more protesters willing to live
in trees. It is now perhaps the nation's largest direct-action
environmental confrontation between polar opposites -- and the unrest
is only likely to get bigger when summer comes and college students
are free to bolster the ranks.

The protests possess all the angry intensity of standoffs at World
Trade Organization or International Monetary Fund meetings in Seattle
and Washington, with the added drama that these Earth Firsters are
not lying down in an intersection, pretending to be dead, but
chaining their arms together in metal sleeves called lockboxes to
branches hundreds of feet in the air. One slip, one shove, means
somebody could be dead.

At last count, about 30 trees were occupied by sitters trespassing on
the Palco lands in Humboldt County. In the late 1990s, when the first
sits began, there were one or two, the most famous of which was the
two-year occupation of the tree called Luna by Julia "Butterfly"
Hill, named by Good Housekeeping magazine as one of the most admired
women of 1998.

The skills of modern rock-climbing have been grafted to these
protests to hoist aloft -- to heights equal to 13-story buildings --
plywood sleeping platforms suspended by ropes and carabiners. To cut
down the tree, the company must send its own climbers up to remove
the protesters. But this is not easy. And as soon as the platforms
and sitters are removed from a tree, other activists scurry back up
at night.

Some sitters perch for weeks, others go months. Jen Card, a
28-year-old bookseller from Oregon who went by the forest name
Remedy, just did 361 days before her arrest. She was charged with
trespassing and resisting arrest. Card is free on bond (she wants to
write a book about her experience); none of the activists has served
any substantial jail time.

"Their presence is effective in slowing down the process," said Palco
spokesman Jim Branham. "We're a convenient target. It's clear their
objective is to shut our company and the timber industry down."
Branham said the fight is not about the environment. "It's a
political and social battle," he says.

"We put the rad in radical," one activist tells a reporter. And
indeed, this is far removed from the 2003 Sierra Club calendar. The
Earth Firsters say they maintain a strict code of nonviolence. But to
an onlooker, it all appears to be incredibly dangerous. For
everybody. Which is the point.

 

Out on a Limb

Just outside the little town of Freshwater, a 15-minute drive from
Arcata, the "Men Working" signs appear along the roadside in the
ferny forest. Then you see the clear-cut, a hillside of raw red earth
and splintered stumps, then the Palco subcontractors' white-and-green
pickup trucks, then Humboldt County sheriff deputies' four-wheelers,
and finally the activists' "lower village," where the first eight
tree-sits are set up.

They are way up there.

A photograph or video does not do it justice. The sitters are more
than a hundred feet in the air, some standing on the very top of the
redwood crowns. They're 20 miles from the ocean, but on a clear day
they say they can see the wave sets breaking. You need binoculars to
watch them.

You can see blue plastic tarps and hanging milk jugs filled with
water and wet sleeping bags, and between the trees the sitters have
strung rope traverses that allow them to move from platform to
platform, like modern-day Tarzan and Jane.

And they can see you, too. One sitter, whose forest name is Synapse
and who's in the tree they call Aurora, shouts down that the
"mainstream media" has arrived and "don't talk to him, he's just out
to make a buck."

Still, the couple dozen or so "ground crew" mostly welcome "the
corporate media tool," as one barefoot activist puts it, to their
communal gorp and berries. At least nobody makes the media tool for a
"feddy-dready," Earth Firster slang for an undercover agent.

A sitter named Tree occupies a redwood called Poseidon. Tree has
slung a rope with a weight around the limb of a neighboring redwood,
then looped his end around his neck so that if lumberjacks cut the
other redwood down, the young man will strangle -- or worse.

"His head would pop off," says a moon-faced woman with starter dreads.

Eric Schatz, a Palco contractor the Earth Firsters call Climber Eric,
puts spikes on his boots and begins to scale the redwood with
confidence and speed. All around -- so close you have to wait to
continue a conversation -- are the sounds of chain saws working
through the clear-cut below.

The lumberjacks and the protesters seem sometimes like long-lost
siblings. Like Palestinians and Israelis. They both seemingly love
these lands, and are in touch with the feel of duff and moss beneath
their feet, the smell and taste of rain, the pure physicality
required to hump up and down these trailless hills. The lumberjacks
crack open a tin of Copenhagen and have a spit. The activists roll
their own cigarettes and have a smoke. The lumberjacks wear old sweat
shirts and wool pants and worn boots. So do the Earth Firsters.

They know each other's forest names and faces. And they share a bond
of common danger. When Climber Eric heads up a tree to pull down a
protester, the Earth Firsters say he often coos to them; that up
there in the treetops, they're in this together: "One bad move.
Somebody falls. Let's work together." The two sides, timber
harvesters and activists, even sat down together to formulate loose
rules of nonviolent engagement under the rubric of the Forest Peace
Alliance -- rules both sides say are routinely crossed.

As Climber Eric ascends, the protesters are close enough to talk to him.

"You're doing the Devil's work, Eric."

"You're not a quality dude, Eric. This isn't quality."

"This isn't safe, man."

"Think about your karma!"

"We love you, Climber Eric. Don't hurt our friend."

A lanky activist named Four Winds keeps heckling. "Quit your job,
Eric! Leave the forest. We'll have the biggest party of your life
down on the beach. We'll eat tofu! You'll eat salmon! Kick up your
feet and roll up a fatty and ask yourself: Should I quit my job and
become a hippie?"

Eric dislodges the rope thrown by Tree and descends. The protesters
keep at him. Finally, Eric answers. "It's okay to terrorize my
family?" he asks. The hecklers say they didn't terrorize his family.
"Part of your community did," Eric says. A few weeks ago, the Earth
Firsters and their allies showed up, first at Eric's house to
protest, and later at his insurance agent's offices to get his policy
revoked. Eric says they terrorized his family. The climber shouts
back at the protesters: "That shows me the quality of you people --
you don't care about my wife and kids."

A Palco subcontractor, whom the Earth Firsters call Faller Dave,
cranks up his chain saw and rips into the tree. Two, three expert
cuts. A crack. A whoosh. Then a ground-rolling ka-thump, a bounce,
and it's down.

What about the tree? What about the tree? the protesters are now
shouting.

Faller Dave counts the rings. The tree was 101 years old -- not
anywhere near the old-growth redwoods towering nearby, trees that
might be 500 or 1,000 years old, slated for the saw but occupied by
sitters.

"The tree did good," Dave says. It fell right where he aimed it.

 

Into the Green

"You cool with trespassing?"

Shunka agrees to take a reporter out to a remote tree-sit where Palco
is slated to begin another harvest, the place Shunka calls Gypsy
Mountain, near Grizzly Creek Redwoods State Park.

Along with Shunka are his "brothers" Four Winds and Eddie. The young
trio are as bonded as a platoon; they've been doing this together
since the late 1990s. They've filled backpacks with supplies bought
with donations -- dried bananas, coconut flakes, fresh bread -- and
are moving up the steep mountain like billy goats. The hike takes an
hour and leaves the group dripping in sweat. There is mountain lion
scat on the trail. A pair of vultures circle.

It is a beautiful forest, steep and carpeted by redwoods and Douglas
fir. There are a few enormous virgins, but lots of second growth,
too. And plenty of old stumps. These forests of Humboldt County have
been logged for more than a century; the redwoods built San Francisco.

In the silence, it feels like what people always compare this
landscape to: a cathedral of green gemstone light. This is where hot
tubs and backyard decks come from. This is watching the sausage get
made.

Here and there are strands of yellow plastic and red tape marked
"Botany."

What's this?

"Ologists," Shunka says. You know, he explains, zoologists,
ecologists, silviculturists.

"It's just a sham," says Four Winds. "They pretend they're doing
something and they just leave a lot of petroleum products hanging in
the trees." The activists support the science that supports their
cause; anything produced by Palco is perceived to be junk. To talk
about "sustainable harvest plans" and "habitat conservation plans" is
bunk, Shunka says.

The three are vague about who they are, using only their forest
names. Local law enforcement knows them; they've all been arrested
for trespassing and resisting arrest. A few details do emerge.

Shunka (Jason Wilson) is 28, a stout fellow with a reddish beard that
grows down his neck; his forest name was given to him by a Lakota
Indian medicine man. He wears amulets. He was raised in Missouri,
educated in philosophy and environmental studies. Out of college,
Shunka worked as a landscaper and at a bagel bakery. His co-workers
didn't like him because he kept talking about the "bourgeoisie."

They stop to take a break. They point out trees with names. Four
Winds finds a salamander and pats its head. It starts to rain.

At a tree called Iridia, a sitter named Terrapin eagerly lowers a
rope for his supplies.

He calls down, "You got somebody to sit?" Terrapin has been in the
branches for three weeks and asks when will a replacement arrive. He
hasn't seen any loggers. Recently, he reports, it snowed, and another
day there was hail. "It was so beautiful," Terrapin says. He can
watch the Van Duzen River course the valley below.

Four Winds mentions that the river was probably named "for some
general who killed Indians," but it was actually named for James Van
Duzen, a member of the Gregg party that explored these forests in
1850.

Terrapin shouts, "You remember the rolling papers?" Of course. The
supplies go up the tree.

Shunka wants to visit the nearby site where his friend David "Gypsy"
Chain was killed on Sept. 17, 1998, when a Palco contractor dropped a
tree on him. Back then, one of the direct-action strategies was to
run around the woods acting as "human shields." No charges were ever
filed, though Palco reached an undisclosed settlement with Chain's
family. Shunka was there that day. Chain was the one who taught
Shunka to climb the redwoods.

Palco agreed to leave the downed tree in the woods as a memorial.
There is a makeshift altar: shells, stones, crystals, a necklace, a
plastic Buddha, a kazoo, a Bic lighter and half a joint. The men get
on their knees.

Four Winds pulls a bag from his pocket and scatters sawdust from the
tree felled earlier this day. Shunka places cedar bark, and says,
"From the doorway in to the doorway out and back out again."

Four Winds (Alexander Carpenter) hails from San Francisco, and he's
26, with partial dreads, chipped teeth. He divides his time between
Earth First! direct actions and his music. He is funny and a hustler.
He is also, he confides, a priest, a healer, an adherent to a
homegrown animist tradition that combines Native American ritual and
worship of nature. Several times this day he has stopped and led a
moment of prayer.

Now he produces a rattle and the three men began to chant, in a mix
of English and a pidgin of Indian languages. When Shunka leads a
song, a refrain in English repeats: "We want to live." Shunka's
throat becomes rough. Four Winds begins to cry. Eddie has his eyes
shut tight. They mourn their friend.

On the way down the mountain, Eddie confesses to Shunka and Four
Winds that he is no longer sure what he is doing here in the woods.
Eddie is 24 and seems to live with his mother in San Francisco and
likes to play drums.

"How many trees are we really saving?" he asks. His friends hear him
out. It is not a bad question. Four Winds says: "What's important is
that we all stay together."

Hiking back to the car, they begin to dream of a possible future:
that they form a band, called FLAN (for Freedom, Love and Nature),
and that Eddie plays drums, Shunka sings and Four Winds plays guitar
and didgeridoo. They'll set up a recording studio in a group activist
house. They'll get supporters to send them $10 a month to make music
and fight for the trees. They'll get a bio-diesel bus. They'll tour.
They'll cut . . . a CD.

Huckleberry Finn didn't want to be civilized by Aunt Sally either.

 

A Long Way Down

Next morning, we go back to Freshwater. Climber Eric is attempting to
use a grinder to cut a sitter named Jungle out of his metal lockbox,
while another protester named Phoenix is serving as a diversion.
They're all up in a tree they call Allah. Phoenix screams that he is
being hurt by Palco climbers attempting to pin him down. The
protesters by turns are thrilled by the alleged aggression ("the
video is unreal") and appalled.

Eddie is gone. He jumped out of the car yesterday and talked about
hitchhiking back to San Francisco. Four Winds scurries 50 feet up a
redwood, without ropes, and starts heckling Climber Eric.

"How was your breakfast at the Cotton Cafe? How was your sausage? We
know where you order at. We work where you eat!" The threat is
obvious, that Climber Eric might have his eggs spit in or . . . what?
Poisoned?

"Not everyone has a nonviolent code like we do!" Four Winds is yelling.

Another protester is spewing profanities at the top of his lungs.

Where are the sheriff's deputies? The protesters are upset they have
not come, and they keep calling 911 on cell phones.

When the deputies do arrive, they are heckled, too. One deputy hears
the complaints that Phoenix is being assaulted, but when she asks to
see their videotape, the activists say they'll get one to her later.

A couple of deputies stand around a pickup and light cigars. Shunka
goes over and calls them goons, fascist thugs and neo-Nazis.

Another protester, a college-age woman, says, "Did I ever tell you I
had a dream about being a bird?" It feels like the children's
crusade. Another activist offers the officers a hug. They decline.

(C) 2003 The Washington Post Company

===================================================+

 

APRIL 17, 2003
PRIVACY MATTERS
By Jane Black

The System That Doesn't Safeguard Travel

The government's error-prone database of possible terrorists now has 13
million travelers' names, and once you're in, just try getting out

"As a public official, I appreciate and commend those trying to protect
our nation against terrorist attacks," the letter from a municipal
employee of Bothell, Wash., begins. "I also have concerns, specifically
regarding the treatment of those who have been identified as potential
risks. It has become apparent, over the course of my last few trips, that
I am one of those individuals."

Put yourself in the shoes of this man, who wrote to his local
congressman, Representative Jay Inslee (D-Wash.), last year. The man's
listing as a possible security threat is a mistake. Yet every time he
flies, he has to arrive at the airport three-and-a-half hours early to
ensure enough time for the inevitable thorough search of his baggage.

And he's not only the only one who encounters trouble. On a recent trip,
his co-workers, who were booked under the same reservation number, were
refused boarding passes until he passed security. "I have now become
known to staff as the person not to travel with," he wrote. "I am asking
your help because all other attempts to clear my name have been futile."

INNOCENT AND TRAPPED. The letter is among a raft of documents offering
new proof that government efforts to build an electronic tracking system
of suspicious travelers simply aren't working. The documents, obtained by
Washington (D.C.) privacy-advocacy group Electronic Privacy Information
Center (EPIC) under the Freedom of Information Act, recount case after
case of innocent travelers who are on the terrorist watch lists, yet have
no way to remove themselves.

Since September 11, various federal agencies, including the State Dept.,
Customs Service, and FBI, have created lists of suspicious travelers,
Americans and foreigners. All told, some 13 million people (equivalent to
4.5% of the U.S. population) are now on the terror watch list. Security
experts and common sense say 99% of those pinpointed aren't terrorists.

The Transportation Safety Administration (TSA) says errors like these are
the reason that it needs to build a better, more complete database of
information to track and flag suspicious behavior (see BW Online,
3/27/03, "Putting the Blinders Back on Big Brother"). Security and
privacy experts, however, warn that no software exists to do the job
better. A look at the most sophisticated and successful systems used to
detect credit-card fraud supports their case.

EASY TO SPOT. Antifraud software works because a large number of legal
credit-card transactions and a large number of unlawful transactions
occur each year, says Peter Swire, a professor of law at Ohio State
University and the former privacy counselor during the Clinton
Administration. According to consumer-payments newsletter The Nilson
Report, 21.1 billion credit-card transactions took place in 2001. With
all that data, a change in patterns is easy to spot. If John Doe usually
spends $1,000 a month on groceries, clothing, and airline tickets, and
then suddenly buys two new cars, the system is going to flag it.

Antifraud software also works well because most credit-card thieves act
the same way: They find or steal a card, and immediately use it at a
convenience store or a gas station. If it works, it's off to the jewelry
store.

That's not the case with terrorists. Since September 11, only a few
terrorist attacks around the globe have occurred that might help
authorities build a profile. Compare that to more than 30 billion
credit-card transactions over the same period in the U.S. alone.

"FINGERING INNOCENTS." Terrorists also rely on the element of surprise.
Those who bombed the World Trade Center in 1993 parked a van full of
explosives in the underground parking lot. The September 11 hijackers
used box cutters and trained pilots to turn four jet planes into
missiles. Richard Reid tried to blow up a passenger jet by packing
explosives in his shoe.

"Antifraud software is designed to help [credit-card companies] cut their
losses.... It's not designed to jump-start an investigation or curtail
any criminal activity," says Frank Abagnale, a leading authority on
forgery and embezzlement and the inspiration for the Steven Spielberg
blockbuster Catch Me If You Can.

Moreover, while you might not mind the occasional call from your
credit-card company, you would mind getting on the government's terrorist
watch list. "The problem with even the best-designed system is that you
end up fingering thousands of innocents without ever finding the guilty
person," says Bruce Schneier, a security expert who has written
frequently about the trade-offs between liberty and security.

THE WRONG GUY. In a simple database with a 1% error rate -- not an
unreasonable estimate considering the quality of the data the government
plans to feed into its terrorist watch system -- Schneier says only one
guilty person would be included for every 100 people erroneously added.
Even worse, you wouldn't know you were on the list until you tried to
board a plane or apply for a mortgage or a job.

The heedless march toward database surveillance will only lead to more
cases like Rochester (N.Y.) resident Asif Iqbal who, unfortunately for
him, shares his name with a terrorist that's in custody at the U.S. naval
base in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. According to EPIC documents, Iqbal was
stopped at check-in as he tried to board a plane on Feb. 18 out of
Rochester. The flight system indicated that he was a risk and should be
denied a boarding pass.

After an interview with the police and an hour-and-a-half wait while
airline staff received clearance from the FBI and other federal agencies,
he was allowed to fly. By that time, however, Iqbal had missed his
flight. The airline promised it would not happen again and offered him an
$8 coupon to buy breakfast.

"VERY DISAPPOINTED." The next day, when Iqbal showed up, he was again
denied boarding and was "forced to endure the agonizing process" again,
he wrote in a letter to his congresswoman, Representative Louise
Slaughter (D-N.Y.). He says authorities and airport representatives
explained that he would have to endure this rigorous background check
"each and every time before I'm allowed to board a plane."

"I completely understand the measures taken by airport security since the
September 11 attacks," he continued. "But isn't American airport-security
technology more advanced than this current program?" In the closing of
his letter, Iqbal wrote: "I expected so much more from the United States
government and find myself very disappointed by it at this time." So am I.

===================================================+

Anti-Terrorist List Delays Others

by Ann Davis
Wall Street Journal

JUNEAU, Alaska (April 22) -- There are about 300 people world-wide the
U.S. considers so dangerous to civil aviation it has them on a "No Fly List."

Larry Musarra, retired Coast Guard commander and father of three, isn't
one of them. A pilot and avid outdoorsman, he is a local hero for his
daring helicopter rescues of stranded fishermen and mountaineers. He now
runs a visitor center overlooking Juneau's spectacular Mendenhall Glacier.

But Alaska Airlines' computers haven't figured that out. Its reservations
system, designed by travel-software giant Sabre Holdings Corp., flags Mr.
Musarra whenever he checks in, which is about once a month, when he
visits a developmentally-disabled son in Oregon. At the ticket counter,
Mr. Musarra has often watched the color drain from agents' faces as they
read a warning that he might be on the terrorist watch list. After a
criminal-background check, he eventually gets to fly but faces extra
luggage and body searches.

The No Fly List, quietly introduced after the Sept. 11 terror attacks, is
designed to keep suspected violent types off airliners. It includes
terrorism suspects thought to pose an imminent danger to flights. Some
people who present a general threat to air safety because of violent
behavior also make the list. The new Transportation Security Agency, or
TSA, compiles names from intelligence and law enforcement and sends the
No Fly List to airlines. Their job is to see that nobody on the list gets
aboard.

It sounds simple, but it's proving tricky to execute. Many entries on the
list lack details that could make it easy to know if a traveler is really
the person named. And the TSA gives airlines little guidance on just when
a passenger's name is close enough to one on the list to warrant flagging
the person for a law-enforcement check.

The result is that carriers are checking the No Fly List a multitude of
ways and coming up with vexing numbers of "false positives" -- innocent
passengers subjected again and again to law-enforcement reviews. The
flagging of some fliers who were political activists has even led to
suspicions the government was grilling them because of their views.

These inconveniences may seem like a small price to pay if the system
improves security. But the Federal Bureau of Investigation, which
contributes to the No Fly List, says the list has helped catch very few
terrorism suspects. While that might simply be because the terrorists
haven't tried to fly lately, linguistics experts say that if they did --
and particularly if they had Arabic names -- it's far from certain that
current methods would flag them.

One reason: In checking passengers against the No Fly List, some airlines
use techniques that were designed decades ago, and for an entirely
different task: to let agents find passenger records quickly without
having a full name or a name's precise spelling.

These "name matching" systems also help airlines spot abusive bookings,
in which travelers reserve a bunch of flights under slightly varying
names. The idea is to cast a wide net. But when applied to a watch list,
they have the perverse effect of flagging numerous travelers whose names
are merely similar to one of those on the list.

One name-matching technique that airlines have used, called Soundex,
dates back more than 100 years, to when it was invented to analyze names
from the 1890 census. In its simplest form, it takes a name, strips out
vowels and assigns codes to somewhat-similar-sounding consonants, such as
"c" and "z."

The result can be bizarre. Hencke and Hamza, for example, have the same
code, H520. If there's a Hamza on the No Fly List, a traveler named
Hencke could be pulled aside for a background check before being allowed
to board.

A 40-year-old method designed specifically for airlines does something
similar, stripping names down to consonants and pulling up names that
have the same consonants in the same order. A third technique sometimes
used by airlines hunts for matches based on the first few letters of
surnames.

Hence Mr. Musarra's troubles in Juneau. In an algorithm used by Sabre,
whose software runs Alaska Airlines' reservations system and many others,
"Musarra" appears to pop up as a match for any name starting with "Mus."
A fair number of names from the Mideast and Central Asia begin that way,
including at least one on the No Fly List.

Exactly what techniques airlines and firms such as Sabre use to check
passengers against the list is impossible to know. They won't identify
their formulas, and the government doesn't want them to. But some current
and former industry executives say most airlines -- while making periodic
refinements, including since Sept. 11 -- still use roughly the same
name-matching tools as they have for decades.

Why not just match names precisely, and question only people whose names
exactly fit an entry on the No Fly List? That wouldn't do, either. Many
people's names have a number of variations, such as William or Bill. Many
are spelled either with a middle initial or without one. And non-Western
names can be rendered in the Roman alphabet in a host of ways.

A name written as "Haj Imhemed Otmane Abderaqib" in Algeria might be
"Hajj Mohamed Uthman Abd al Ragib" in Iraq, and as "Hag Muhammad Osman
Abdurra'ib" in Sudan, according to Language Analysis Systems Inc., a
Herndon, Va., company that does name-analysis work for many federal
agencies.

One wanted terrorism suspect, Adnan G. El Shukrijumah, uses five aliases.
The six names can be translated a total of more than 500 ways, says
Language Analysis Systems. The firm adds that foreign words can also be
mistaken for first or last names, such as "Effendi," which is an
honorific for "Sir" or "Mister" in some Mideastern languages.

Another quirk of airlines' systems is that groups that purchase their
tickets together end up in a single travel record. If one member triggers
a hit on the watch list, computers lock up on them all.

A year ago in Milwaukee, Midwest Express pulled aside 19 members of a
group called Peace Action Wisconsin headed to Washington for a "teach-in"
about U.S. military involvement in Colombia. The group, which included a
nun and a grandmother, had to wait for sheriff's deputies to run
immigration and FBI background checks, according to records of the
incident. The delay caused them to miss their event.

Four months later in San Francisco, Jan Adams and Rebecca Gordon,
co-founders of an antiwar newsletter called War Times, were pulled aside
for police questioning when they arrived at the ATA Airlines counter. An
FBI search turned up nothing, and the women, both in their fifties, were
allowed to fly.

In both cases, the groups were told they had matched the No Fly List. But
these incidents and others fed the notion among activists that the
government was targeting them. "When is a nun considered too dangerous to
get on board a plane? When she's a peace activist," said one of numerous
critiques, this one in the newspaper Socialist Worker.

But three months after the Milwaukee incident, a report by the county
sheriff's office said the incident was due to use of Soundex in Midwest
Express's reservations system, which uses Sabre software. A security
official for the airline says that a group member with the last name of
"Laden" might have helped trip up the group.

As for Jan Adams in San Francisco, she was one of a number of Adamses
with the first initial J who were stopped last year. They included
23-year-old Jarrett Adams on June 5, 55-year-old John Adams and his wife
on June 16, and 34-year-old John Christian Adams, who complained to the
TSA last July.

The apparent trigger: A Joseph Adams on the No Fly List, whose entry
gives little data besides a birth date. Officials at ATA, the airline Ms.
Adams flew, and some other carriers say they are frustrated that the
watch list doesn't have better data to eliminate mismatches.

One needn't be an activist to get caught in this web. Last April, two San
Francisco airport police officers cornered David L. Nelson, a 56-year-old
bank executive, as he checked in at Alaska Airlines. "They had hands on
their guns. They asked was I an American citizen and who am I," Mr.
Nelson says. After a half-hour of questions and database checks, they
cleared him. He says his son, named David C. Nelson, also has been
stopped as a No Fly List match.

At Oakland International Airport, Police Sgt. Larry Krupp says he has
cleared so many innocent "David Nelsons" to board that one of them now
buys him coffee. There is a name very similar to theirs on the No Fly
List.

For every check, Sgt. Krupp must thumb through an 86-page,
nonalphabetized list of names. "The vast majority of times we go there,
they're not even on the list," he says. Sgt. Krupp says he has had only
one true match, a man he describes as an Afghan drug dealer.

Newer methods exist, which take into account names' cultural origins in
order to come up with more-relevant name variations. Some government
agencies are starting to use them. But travel consultants say
hard-pressed airlines have been reluctant to spend money to improve a
screening function they believe should be done by the government -- and
that the TSA has said it eventually will assume. Airlines would rather
leave it to the government to rule a passenger in or out. No Fly List
entries can include subjective notations like "is sickly with asthma,
uses a lot of hand gestures," as one did on a recent copy of the list
reviewed by The Wall Street Journal.

A wide variety of reservations systems have their genesis in the Sabre
system, which International Business Machines Corp. designed for American
Airlines in the 1960s. IBM later built similar systems for other airlines.

Lightning fast in basic reservations chores, the mainframe-based systems
are less well suited for other tasks, such as clearing a frequent
traveler to fly once and for all. In most airline systems, the No Fly
checks are set up in such a way that the computer treats each passenger
as a brand new name, even if he or she has flown recently and was cleared
in another flight record.

The TSA is considering a way to put fliers who've repeatedly been
mistakenly flagged on a "Fly List." But even if this proved technically
feasible, security officials at airlines and the TSA would still have the
challenge of making sure they weren't vulnerable to letting a dangerous
person of the same name slip through.

Records obtained in a Freedom of Information Act suit brought by the
Electronic Privacy Information Center show that the TSA has received
complaints from mistakenly flagged customers of all major carriers, which
use a variety of software to process passengers.

One reservation system used by several airlines, Shares, uses "the same
type of [name] matching that has gone on for 10 to 15 years -- actually
longer," says Michael Hulley, an executive of Shares owner Electronic
Data Systems Corp. He will identify only one method Shares uses: matching
the first few letters of a name.

Another competitor of Sabre, Galileo, says it looks for exact matches on
names or strings of letters. But Galileo officials try to spot No Fly
List matches in advance of a flight and pre-clear passengers who clearly
aren't the person on the list, says Chuck Barnhart, an official of
Galileo.

Sabre won't disclose its current name-matching methods, but a
spokeswoman, Kathryn Hayden, says: "Algorithms are not static -- they
change, they are updated." Sabre says different airlines can use its
software in different ways. "It's up to each airline to determine how
they implement the government requirements for the No Fly Lists," Ms.
Hayden says.

One carrier that uses Sabre software, Alaska Airlines, has more than its
share of false No Fly List matches, judging by the records obtained by
the Electronic Privacy Information Center. Of 34 complaints to the TSA
where the airline was identified, 11 cited Alaska. Ms. Hayden says such
anecdotal evidence doesn't prove Sabre's software "causes a greater
number of false hits."

Barbara and Dennis Musante, a California couple, took their complaint up
the Alaska Airlines chain of command after being delayed twice. Ms.
Musante says an airline supervisor finally told her the first four
letters of their last name matched a suspect, though they themselves
weren't on the list. The TSA confirmed they weren't. In a letter, the TSA
added that in its view, "the benefits of such measures far outweigh the
inconvenience."

Mr. Musarra, the Alaska man who has faced many delays, has tried
everything he can think of to clear his name once and for all. He got
Sen. Ted Stevens to contact the FBI. He told local TSA people of how
their boss in Washington, retired Admiral James Loy, once honored him for
his work on an oil-spill cleanup exercise.

For his monthly flights, Mr. Musarra has developed a routine: Try to
check via the Internet the night before the flight; get rejected. Arrive
at the airport hours early, go to the self-serve kiosk; get rejected
again. Go to the counter, wait while an agent calls a supervisor, wait
more while officials take his I.D. to a back room to phone security
officials.

Invariably cleared, he boards, but the clearance lasts just through the
end of his round trip. Often he is bringing his son Tim home for a visit.
Tim Musarra, 12, also sets off No Fly List alarms.

A college-age son, Aren, has the same problems, Mr. Musarra says.

Then there's Mr. Musarra's adopted son, Jonathan Paul Sung Ho Musarra,
15. A high-school wrestler, "Sungie" is the reason his teammates have to
get up at 3 or 4 a.m. for morning flights to their meets. Because they
buy group tickets, the 20-plus wrestlers, chaperones and coaches show up
on the computer screen as No Fly List hits.

A spokesman for Alaska Airlines, Lou Cancelmi, says, "All of these false
positive issues concern us greatly. We're absolutely committed to working
toward mitigating all of them to the maximum extent possible." Recently,
the airline began having employees scrutinize alarms generated by its
computers in advance of flights, in hopes of clearing misflagged
passengers.

That seemed to help Mr. Musarra on his last flight. The computer still
flagged him; he found himself unable to check in via the Web. An error
message told him he needed manual assistance. But when he got to the
airport this time, Mr. Musarra received a boarding pass without the
security review.

The TSA has been trying to get the message to airlines that they should
focus on matches of full names, not just the last name, says James R.
Owen, a TSA official in Juneau. Longer term, the agency is working on an
advanced passenger pre-screening system known by the acronym of CAPPS II.

It will scour not only watch lists such as No Fly but also criminal
records, credit-card transactions and identifiers such as address and
date of birth to detect suspicious patterns. The TSA envisions it as
"dramatically reducing" the number of people flagged. Privacy and
civil-liberties advocates fear just the opposite -- that the increased
ways to attract suspicion will result in even more passengers being
wrongly tagged.

Copyright (C) 2003 Dow Jones & Company, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

===================================================+

Environmentalists agree to release some timber sales held up over salmon

By JEFF BARNARD
Associated Press Writer

3 April 2003
Copyright 2003. The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.

GRANTS PASS, Ore. (AP) - Logging can begin on parts of 19 federal
timber sales from Northern California to Washington that have been held
up for years as part of a lawsuit over protection of salmon habitat,
under a settlement approved by a judge this week.

Environmental and fishing groups reviewed the sales, representing
about 60 million board feet of timber, and found they do not pose a
threat to salmon streams, said Patti Goldman of Earthjustice, which
represented plaintiffs in the lawsuit and settlement negotiations.

The settlement, signed Tuesday by U.S. District Judge Barbara
Rothstein in Seattle, does not affect about 50 other timber sales
representing about 150 million board feet of timber that were halted by
the ruling.

"We are basically trying to show them there are sales you can proceed
with without harming salmon habitat," Goldman said. "You don't have to
view the litigation or the Northwest Forest Plan as an obstacle."

Mary Zuschlag, natural resources staff officer for the Siuslaw
National Forest, said the settlement represented growing trust between
environmental groups and the Forest Service.

The settlement came as the Bush Administration has begun working to
change its salmon protection strategy under the Northwest Forest plan to
make it easier to approve timber sales so they won't be held up by
lawsuits like this one.

The Northwest Forest Plan was adopted in 1994 under the Clinton
administration to settle a lawsuit that halted logging in old growth
stands on national forests in the Northwest to protect habitat for the
spotted owl, salmon, and other fish and wildlife.

The plan was supposed to peg logging at 1.1 billion board feet of
timber a year, but has never come close to that goal. Current timber
volume is less than a third of that.

Chris West of the American Forest Resource Council, a timber industry
group, said the failure to meet the timber goals nine years after the
plan was adopted shows the process needs to be changed.

Though the volume released by the settlement represents more than a
quarter of the timber currently coming off Northwest national forests, it
is only enough to keep one medium-sized sawmill going for a year and a
half, said West.

The Blue Lake Forest Products mill outside Eureka, Calif., went broke
waiting for one of the sales that was released, West added.

"While this settlement is a positive thing, there are alot of other
things that are still hindrances to implementation of the Clinton Forest
Plan," West said.

Many of the sales released under the settlement are thinning projects,
designed to nurture the old growth forest characteristics that are best
for threatened species such as the Northern spotted owl, Forest Service
spokesman Rex Holloway.

The sales involved in the settlement are on the Shasta-Trinity and
Klamath national forests in California, the Siuslaw National Forest and
Eugene District of the U.S. Bureau of Land Management in Oregon and the
Gifford-Pinchot National Forest in Washington.

The original ruling, upheld by the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, held
that the Forest Service and BLM had failed to adequately consider the
cumulative effects of logging on salmon habitat across watersheds.

Rothstein also found that the agencies had failed to provide
scientific evidence supporting their contention that re-growth over the
next 10 years would reverse any harm to salmon habitat caused by the logging.

===================================================+

 

Date: Monday, March 17, 2003 11:39 PM

The Tennessean
Sunday, 03/16/03

Despite apology, Dixie Chicks face growing boycott

Children attending KRMD-FM's ''Dixie Chicks Destruction'' stomp on compact
discs by the Grammy Award-winning group the Dixie Chicks, after the discs
were run over by a tractor yesterday in Bossier City, La. The station pulled
the band from its playlist after singer Natalie Maines told a London
audience Monday, ''Just so you know, we're ashamed the president of the
United States is from Texas.''

By DIANA HEIDGERD
Associated Press

DALLAS - When it comes to President Bush, the Dixie Chicks are singing a
different tune. But not every country radio station is playing it.

Natalie Maines, the Grammy Award-winning group's lead singer, apologized
Friday for her criticism of President Bush and possible war against Iraq.
That did not stop some stations in Texas and other parts of the country from
pulling Dixie Chicks songs off their programs, however.

In Nashville, WSIX-FM launched an online survey asking listeners whether
they (a) wanted the station to suspend Dixie Chicks tunes for a week; (b)
keep playing their music but tell Maines to ''shut up and sing''; or (c)
agreed with what she said. As of yesterday, the station was still playing
the Dixie Chicks.

Voice your opinion

Radio stations started getting angry calls from listeners after Maines told
a London audience Monday, ''Just so you know, we're ashamed the president of
the United States is from Texas.''

The Dixie Chicks are touring Europe, supporting their recent release Home,
where Maines said Friday they were ''witnessing a huge anti-American
sentiment as a result of the perceived rush to war.'' Maines said she was a
mother and wanted to see ''every possible alternative exhausted'' before
lives were lost.

In her apology, Maines said, ''As a concerned American citizen, I apologize
to President Bush be-cause my remark was disrespectful. I feel that whoever
holds that office should be treated with the utmost respect.''

Bush was born in Connecticut but grew up in west Texas. He has a ranch near
Crawford, Texas, and served as governor for six years. Maines is a native of
Lubbock.

''We've had a huge listener reaction and movement against the statements,''
said Paul Williams, program director for KPLX-FM in Dallas-Fort Worth, the
nation's fifth-largest radio market.

On the Web site for KSCS-FM, also in Dallas-Fort Worth, was a photo of the
three-member group, with black tape over Maines' mouth. The headline at
www.kscs.com read: ''Have The Dixie Chicks Gone Too Far?''

Ted Stecker, KSCS program director, said he had never had this kind of
response from an audience during his 30 years in the music business. ''A lot
could depend on how the Dixie Chicks respond and face their fans,'' he said.

In Kansas City, WDAF set trash cans outside the radio station for people to
throw their Dixie Chicks CDs away. The station has boycotted the group's
music on air, and its Web site displayed more than 800 e-mails from
listeners. Most people voiced outrage about Maines' comment and praised the
station for its boycott.

A few voiced support for the group and for their right to freely speak their
opinions about the country and the president.

But Tom Fontaine, an on-air personality at KILT-FM in Houston, said, ''We
stand behind our president and we are proud he is from Texas.''

The station has suspended playing the Dixie Chicks.

''We have run polls and the overwhelming majority of the calls have been for
us not to play the Dixie Chicks,'' Fontaine said.

El Paso station KHEY-FM has received complaints and won't play any Dixie
Chicks songs this weekend, said Program Director Steve Gramzay. The
temporary ban will ''give everybody a chance to cool down,'' he said.

The Dixie Chicks' U.S. leg of their ''Top of the World Tour'' was scheduled
to kick off May 1 in Greenville, S.C.'s Bi-Lo Center to a sold-out crowd.
But attendance is now more uncertain.

Jill Weninger, the center's marketing director, said the first call she
received Friday morning was from a woman who felt Greenville didn't need the
group after its ''anti-American'' statements. She said she also received two
e-mails but that was the extent of the complaints. ''One person that
e-mailed said she had tickets but she wouldn't be coming.''

The Bi-Lo Center sold out during the Dixie Chicks' first appearance and
again this year on the first day they went on sale.

After more than 250 listeners called in a two-hour period Friday morning to
complain about Maines' comments, WTDR-FM in Talladega, Ala., dropped the
Dixie Chicks. ''The emotion of the callers telling us about their fathers
and sons and brothers who are overseas now and who fought in previous wars
was very specific,'' said Jim Jacobs, president of Jacobs Broadcast Group,
which includes WTDR.

The Dixie Chicks, who performed their hit Landslide at the Feb. 23 Grammy
Awards, won four Grammys at this year's show, including Best Country Album
for Home. Their next stop is Wednesday in Munich, where American policies
against Iraq are widely criticized. They return to Texas on May 21 in Austin.

===================================================+

 

Monday, March 17, 2003 10:55 PM

Tarahumara Blockade

Court Order Stop Logging in Coloradas de la Virgen

On March 9, 40 Tarahumara, men and women, confronted loggers in
Coloradas de la Virgen. Armed with a court order, clothed in thin
cottons and huarache sandals against freezing temperatures, and for the
first time in their history, protected by state police, they stopped the
chainsaws of the illegal narco-logging operation of the Fontes cartel.
The Tarahumara action ended a month-long blockade of logging trucks and
a six-month court battle. The blockade was led by Adelina Fontes,
Josefa Chaparro, and Luciana Torres, all of whom had been widowed by the
Fontes cartel a decade or more ago. This action ended a logging
operation that has proceeded off and on since a court battle over ejido
fraud began six months ago. It may mark the turning point in a 26-year
struggle against fraud and violent repression by the Fontes.

On February 20th, the Tribunal Agrario nullified the election of Iv.n
Fontes Carrillo and other ejido officers. Prior to the sentence, the
government was reluctant to enforce a court order to suspend logging.
On February 4, 20 Tarahumara, mostly women, began to blockade logging
trucks entering Coloradas. Fearing violence from the truckers and
nearby Fontes pistoleros, the military provided security for the
blockade. The commanding officer even confiscated timber transport
permits, temporarily exceeding his authority in support of the
Tarahumara. Public pressure following an article in the national
magazine El Proceso (February 2, 2003) entitled iNarco-talamontes
(narco-loggers) with Official Protectioni, ensured cooperation from
police and military for the first time in nearly a decade. The military
also reportedly destroyed a previously iuntouchablei landing strip on
the Fontesi ranch.

The court decision supported Tarahumara claim that the ejido assembly
which had ielectedi Fontes and iapprovedi the logging concessions was
fraudulent. The Fontes falsified the ejido assemblies by using the
names of 17 dead souls and 21 former residents who have been absent from
the region for 6 to 20 years. Lino Martinez and Martin Valdez, ejido
members who filed suit against the Fontes, and other Tarahumara leaders
have been harassed and threatened since the claims were submitted last
September.

The Fontes have attempted to log the old growth forests of Coloradas
since 1984, when they convinced a corrupt agrarian authority to register
a list of iejiditariosi they submitted. Shortly after, they began
logging the area. The Tarahumara began protesting. The Fontes are
murderous caciques who have strived to manage communal lands as a
private ranch, stealing cattle and timber, forcing drug cultivation and
murdering anyone who opposed them. Sixty eight Tarahumara and four
mestizos have petitioned for land recognition since 1934. All but four
Tarahumara were excluded from the 1984 Fontes list.

In 1986, Tarahumara leader Julio Baldenegro was assassinated, allegedly
by order of Artemio Fontes, after protesting to the government against
the Fontes logging operation. Logging permits were suspended shortly
afterwards, and started up again in 1991, this time with help from road
improvements financed by the World Bank, a program cancelled by
international protest in 1994. Tarahumara and international protests
stopped the logging in 1991. Between 1988 and 1994, 35 Tarahumara were
murdered in Coloradas.

Sierra Madre Alliance and the now defunct CASMAC exposed the violence
and corruption to the World Bank and to the international public,
culminating in indictments against Fontes, arrests of two murdererss,
and flight of other criminals from the area by 1995. Lic. Teresa
Jardi, former Federal Attorney General in Chihuahua, working closely
with Bustillos and the Tarahumara, defied threats and indicted the
Fontes but was never able to convict him. Most of the Tarahumara
community fled the violence, suffering poverty, hunger and drought as
refugees in hidden canyons and nearby towns. By 1996 many were able to
return. CASMAC leader, Ediwn Bustillos was awarded the Goldman
Environmental Prize for his efforts, but illness and and lack of funding
prohibited follow-up in the community. When SMA finally got funding and
hired the needed Mexican staff to return to Coloradas in 2002, the
Fontes already had a new logging permit and PROCEDE certification to
back their land fraud.

The Tarahumara goal is to regain their land rights and unite the ejido
lands with neighboring community lands known by the same name. They
will then make decisions about protecting and restoring their natural
resources. Lino Martinez and MartIn Valdez have another case pending to
nullify the governmental (PROCEDE) certification of the ejido land
status that was granted to the Fontes. Lino and Martin are the only
members of the opposition group legally recognized as ejiditarios.
They refused thousands of dollars in bribes and numerous threats to
withdraw their claims, incredible for campesinos who typically earn less
than $200 per year and whose community has been torn apart by the
violent past.

The movement to stop logging is bringing together Tarahumara who have
been long divided by their flight from the violence of Coloradas, and
manipulations by a self-appointed leader supported by the state
government. Equally important, the blockades were widely supported
by the residents of Baborigame, mestizo, Tarahumara and Tepehuan who
have long lived in fear of the Fontes.

Last year, SMA sponsored a community diagnostic and planning workshop,
provided training, legal and technical support for their leaders, and
assisted with travel funds to defend their cause. The Tarahumara have
begun two projects they designed themselves to restore elements of their
culture n traditional medicine and the matachine dance. SMA and
Fuerza Ambiental, supported by EcoLogic Development Fund, are in the
process of signing an agreement with the Secretariat of Agriculture
(SAGARPA) for micro-watershed restoration to begin in six communities in
the region, a program soon to include Coloradas de la Virgen. We have
just placed a full time community development advisor in the region and
are beginning an intensive applied training program for 20 Tarahumara
and Tepehuan leaders in April, 2003. In neighboring Pino Gordo, the
Tarahumara are finishing an ethno-ecological management plan for a
proposed reserve that protects the largest remaining stands of old
growth in the Sierra Tarahumara.

Coloradas de la Virgen has just defended another significant stand of
ancient forests and will soon have the opportunity to balance needs of
their community and nature. They still have ahead of them ongoing
legal battles with the Fontes and a long process of administrative
changes to recognize their communal lands. However uncertain the
future, they have survived three grueling decades of terror and are
proud to be finally approaching the vision of their grandfathers - a
united and free pueblo.

By Randall Gingrich

Founder and Executive Director of Sierra Madre Alliance, an organization
that has advised and supported Mexican and indigenous associates
working to advance conservation, justice and sustainable community
development in the Sierra since 1992.

===================================================+

 

Lake Powell at lowest point since its filling

By Shaun McKinnon
The Arizona Republic
Feb. 12, 2003

Drought-stricken Lake Powell, a critical water source for millions of
Westerners, is almost half-empty, falling to its lowest level since it
was filling up nearly 30 years ago.

The sprawling reservoir is 87 feet below its high mark, exposing hundreds
of miles of new beaches and canyon walls.

The lake last reached that level on May 29, 1973, 10 years after
construction of Glen Canyon Dam.

Water levels are expected to dip 5 more feet before mountain snowmelt
begins to replenish the lake in late March, though climate experts on
Tuesday projected below-normal runoff this year for much of the West.

Four years of record-low flows from the Colorado River and unrelenting
demand from Arizona, Nevada and California have taken a heavy toll on
Lake Powell, forcing the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation to draw heavily on
stored water.

The reservoir still holds more than 12.5 million acre-feet of water,
about 4 trillion gallons, but that's not even a two-year supply for the
three states that draw from the lake.

Copyright 2003, The Arizona Republic.

===================+++

Photos of partially drained Lake Powell Reservoir:

http://members.accessbee.com/aorange/utah/river2/river2.html

===================================================+


Schwarzkopf wants to give peace a chance

"I have gotten somewhat nervous at some of
     the pronouncements Rumsfeld has made."

-Norman Schwarzkopf

TAMPA

Norman Schwarzkopf wants to give peace a chance.

The general who commanded U.S. forces in the 1991 Gulf War
says he hasn't seen enough evidence to convince him that his
old comrades Dick Cheney, Colin Powell and Paul Wolfowitz
are correct in moving toward a new war now. He thinks U.N.
inspections are still the proper course to follow. He's
worried about the cockiness of the U.S. war plan, and even
more by the potential human and financial costs of occupying
Iraq.

And don't get him started on Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld.

In fact, the hero of the last Gulf War sounds surprisingly
like the man on the street when he discusses his ambivalence
about the Bush administration's hawkish stance on ousting
Saddam Hussein. He worries about the Iraqi leader, but would
like to see some persuasive evidence of Iraq's alleged
weapons programs.

"The thought of Saddam Hussein with a sophisticated nuclear
capability is a frightening thought, okay?" he says. "Now,
having said that, I don't know what intelligence the U.S.
government has. And before I can just stand up and say,
'Beyond a shadow of a doubt, we need to invade Iraq,' I
guess I would like to have better information."

He hasn't seen that yet, and so -- in sharp contrast to the
Bush administration -- he supports letting the U.N. weapons
inspectors drive the timetable: "I think it is very
important for us to wait and see what the inspectors come up
with, and hopefully they come up with something conclusive."

This isn't just any retired officer speaking. Schwarzkopf is
one of the nation's best-known military officers, with name
recognition second only to his former boss, Secretary of
State Powell. What's more, he is closely allied with the
Bush family. He hunts with the first President Bush. He
campaigned for the second, speaking on military issues at
the 2000 GOP convention in Philadelphia and later stumping
in Florida with Cheney, who was secretary of defense during
the 1991 war.

But he sees the world differently from those Gulf War
colleagues. "It's obviously not a black-and-white situation
over there" in the Mideast, he says. "I would just think
that whatever path we take, we have to take it with a bit of
prudence."

So has he seen sufficient prudence in the actions of his old
friends in the Bush administration? Again, he carefully
withholds his endorsement. "I don't think I can give you an
honest answer on that."

Now 68, the general seems smaller and more soft-spoken than
in his Riyadh heyday 12 years ago when he was "Stormin'
Norman," the fatigues-clad martinet who intimidated
subordinates and reporters alike. During last week's
interview he sat at a small, round table in his skyscraper
office, casually clad in slacks and a black polo shirt, the
bland banks and hotels of Tampa's financial district spread
out beyond him.

His voice seems thinner than during those blustery, globally
televised Gulf War briefings. He is limping from a recent
knee operation. He sometimes stays home to nurse the
swelling with a bag of frozen peas.

He's had time to think. He likes the performance of Colin
Powell -- chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff during the
Gulf War, now secretary of state. "He's doing a wonderful
job, I think," he says. But he is less impressed by
Rumsfeld, whose briefings he has watched on television.

"Candidly, I have gotten somewhat nervous at some of the
pronouncements Rumsfeld has made," says Schwarzkopf.

He contrasts Cheney's low profile as defense secretary
during the Gulf War with Rumsfeld's frequent television
appearances since Sept. 11, 2001. "He almost sometimes seems
to be enjoying it." That, Schwarzkopf admonishes, is a
sensation to be avoided when engaged in war.

The general is a true son of the Army, where he served from
1956 to 1991, and some of his comments reflect the
estrangement between that service and the current defense
secretary. Some at the top of the Army see Rumsfeld and
those around him as overly enamored of air power and high
technology and insufficiently attentive to the brutal
difficulties of ground combat. Schwarzkopf's comments
reflect Pentagon scuttlebutt that Rumsfeld and his aides
have brushed aside some of the Army's concerns.

"The Rumsfeld thing . . . that's what comes up," when he
calls old Army friends in the Pentagon, he says.

"When he makes his comments, it appears that he disregards
the Army," Schwarzkopf says. "He gives the perception when
he's on TV that he is the guy driving the train and
everybody else better fall in line behind him -- or else."

That dismissive posture bothers Schwarzkopf because he
thinks Rumsfeld and the people around him lack the
background to make sound military judgments by themselves.
He prefers the way Cheney operated during the Gulf War. "He
didn't put himself in the position of being the
decision-maker as far as tactics were concerned, as far as
troop deployments, as far as missions were concerned."

Rumsfeld, by contrast, worries him. "It's scary, okay?" he
says. "Let's face it: There are guys at the Pentagon who
have been involved in operational planning for their entire
lives, okay? . . . And for this wisdom, acquired during many
operations, wars, schools, for that just to be ignored, and
in its place have somebody who doesn't have any of that
training, is of concern."

As a result, Schwarzkopf is skeptical that an invasion of
Iraq would be as fast and simple as some seem to think. "I
have picked up vibes that . . . you're going to have this
massive strike with massed weaponry, and basically that's
going to be it, and we just clean up the battlefield after
that," he says. But, he adds, he is more comfortable now
with what he hears about the war plan than he was several
months ago, when there was talk of an assault built around
air power and a few thousand Special Operations troops.

He expresses even more concern about the task the U.S.
military might face after a victory. "What is postwar Iraq
going to look like, with the Kurds and the Sunnis and the
Shiites? That's a huge question, to my mind. It really
should be part of the overall campaign plan."

(Rumsfeld said last week that post-Saddam planning "is a
tough question and we're spending a lot of time on it, let
me assure you." But the Pentagon hasn't disclosed how long
it expects to have to occupy Iraq, or how many troops might
be required to do that.)

The administration may be discussing the issue behind closed
doors, Schwarzkopf says, but he thinks it hasn't
sufficiently explained its thinking to the world, especially
its assessment of the time, people and money needed. "I
would hope that we have in place the adequate resources to
become an army of occupation," he warns, "because you're
going to walk into chaos."

The Result of a Bad Ending?

Just as the Gulf War looks less conclusive in retrospect, so
has Schwarzkopf's reputation diminished since the glory days
just after the war, when, Rick Atkinson wrote in "Crusade,"
Schwarzkopf "seemed ubiquitous, appearing at the Kentucky
Derby, at the Indianapolis 500, on Capitol Hill, in parades,
on bubblegum cards."

Twelve years and two American presidents later, Saddam
Hussein is still in power, and the U.S. military is once
again mustering to strike Iraq.

Some strategic thinkers, both inside the military and in
academia, see Schwarzkopf's past actions as part of the
problem. These experts argue that if the 1991 war had been
terminated more thoughtfully, the U.S. military wouldn't
have to go back again to finish the job.

"Everyone was so busy celebrating the end of the Vietnam
syndrome that we forgot how winners win a war," says one
Gulf War veteran who asked that his name not be used because
he hopes to work in the administration.

Schwarzkopf in particular draws fire for approving a
cease-fire that permitted the Iraqi military to fly
helicopters after the war. Soon afterward, Iraqi helicopter
gunships were used to put down revolts against Hussein in
the Shiite south and the Kurdish north of Iraq. Only later
were "no-fly zones" established to help protect those
minority populations.

"It's quite clear that however brilliant operationally and
technologically, the Gulf War cannot be viewed strategically
as a complete success," says Michael Vickers, a former
Special Forces officer who is now an analyst for the Center
for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments, a defense think tank.

Added one Pentagon expert on Iraq, "With benefit of
hindsight, the victory was incomplete, and the luster of the
entire operation has faded."

When Army colonels study the Gulf War at the Army War
College nowadays, notes one professor there, "a big part of
the class is discussing war termination."

For all that, few experts contend that Schwarzkopf is really
the one to blame for the way the Gulf War ended. "Insofar as
Gulf War 1 didn't finish the job, blame is more likely and
appropriately laid on Bush 41 and, to a somewhat lesser
extent, on Colin Powell," says John Allen Williams, a
political scientist who specializes in military affairs at
Loyola University Chicago.

Schwarzkopf himself doesn't entirely disagree with the view
that the war was ended badly. "You can't help but sit here
today and, with 20/20 hindsight, go back and say, 'Look, had
we done something different, we probably wouldn't be facing
what we are facing today.' "

But, he continues, Washington never instructed him to invade
Iraq or oust Saddam Hussein. "My mission, plain and simple,
was kick Iraq out of Kuwait. Period. There were never any
other orders." Given the information available back then,
the decision to stop the war with Saddam Hussein still in
power was, he says, "probably was the only decision that
could have been made at that time."

'Tell It Like It Is'

Schwarzkopf was never as lionized in military circles as he
was by the general public. Like a rock star, he shuns
commercial air travel mainly because he can barely walk
through an airport without being besieged by autograph
seekers and well-wishers. But his reputation inside the Army
has "always been a bit different from the outside view,"
notes retired Army Col. Richard H. Sinnreich, who frequently
participates in war games and other military training
sessions.

Sinnreich doesn't think that many in the armed forces blame
Schwarzkopf for the inconclusive ending of the Gulf War. "I
know of no Army officer, active or retired, who holds such a
view," he says. "The decision to suspend offensive
operations clearly was a political decision that I suspect
the relevant principals now profoundly regret, even if
they're loath to admit it."

But what did sour some in the Army on Schwarzkopf, says
Sinnreich, was his "rather ungracious treatment of his Gulf
War subordinates."

Schwarzkopf raised eyebrows across the Army when, in his
Gulf War memoir, he denounced one of his generals, Frederick
Franks, for allegedly moving his 7th Corps in a "plodding
and overly cautious" manner during the attack on the Iraqi
military. He elaborated on that criticism in subsequent
rounds of interviews. This public disparagement of a former
subordinate rankled some in the Army, which even more than
the other services likes to keep its internal disputes
private.

"I think his attack on Franks was wrong," says Army Maj.
Donald Vandergriff, in a typical comment.

"It wasn't meant to be an attack on Fred Franks,"
Schwarzkopf responds in the interview. Rather, he says, he
was trying to provide an honest assessment, in the tradition
of the Army's practice of conducting brutally accurate
"after-action reviews." "No matter how painful it is, [when]
you do your after-action review, tell it like it is."

The other behavior that bothered some was Schwarzkopf's
virtual absence from the Army after the Gulf War. Many
retired generals make almost a full-time job of working with
the Army -- giving speeches at West Point and at the Army
War College in Carlisle, Pa., visiting bases to mentor
up-and-coming officers, sitting on Pentagon advisory boards,
writing commentaries in military journals.

"The fact that Schwarzkopf . . . did not make himself
available to speak to the many, many Army audiences anxious
to listen to him won him no friends in the Army," notes
retired Army Brig. Gen. John Mountcastle.

Adds Earl H. Tilford Jr., a former director of research at
the War College's Strategic Studies Institute: "You never
saw him at Carlisle, never."

Likewise, a professor at West Point recalls repeatedly being
brushed off by Schwarzkopf's office.

Schwarzkopf says he avoided those circles for good reason.
After the Gulf War, he says, he decided to take a low
profile within the Army because he didn't want to step on
the toes of the service's post-Gulf War leaders. There were
sensitivities about overshadowing those generals, he says,
especially after word leaked that he had been considered for
the post of Army chief of staff but had declined the
position.

Seeing that "open wound," he says, "I purposely distanced
myself for a reasonable time."

The Army War College's location in rural Pennsylvania makes
it difficult to reach from his home in the Tampa area, he
says. And he notes that he has done much other work behind
the scenes on behalf of the Army, including meeting with
presidential candidate Bush to lobby him on military
readiness issues.

He also has been busy with nonmilitary charities. After a
bout with prostate cancer in 1994, he threw himself into
helping cancer research; no fewer than 10 groups that fight
cancer or conduct other medical research have given him
awards in recent years.

No More Heroes?

Perhaps the real reason that Schwarzkopf's reputation has
shrunk has more to do with America and less to do with
Schwarzkopf's actions. American wars used to produce heroes
such as Washington, Grant and Eisenhower, whose names were
known by all schoolchildren, notes Boston University
political scientist Andrew Bacevich.

But in recent decades, Bacevich says, "military fame has
lost its durability." Sen. John McCain may appear to be an
exception, he says, but he is someone noted less for what he
did in the military than for what he endured as a prisoner
of war.

More representative, Bacevich notes, may be Army Gen. Tommy
R. Franks, the officer who would lead U.S. forces in any new
war with Iraq. Franks "has not ignited widespread popular
affection," says Bacevich, himself a retired Army colonel.

It may be that American society no longer has an appetite
for heroes, military or otherwise, says Ward Carroll, a
recently retired naval aviator and author of "Punk's War," a
novel about patrolling the no-fly zone over southern Iraq.
American society may not be making the kinds of sacrifices
that make people look for heroes to celebrate. "You don't
have rationing, you don't have gold stars in the window, and
the other things that made [war heroes] a part of the fabric
of American life" in the past, he says.

Even Schwarzkopf's own Gulf War memoir was titled "It
Doesn't Take a Hero."

Or it just may be that America no longer puts anyone up on a
pedestal. "Even our sports heroes aren't heroes anymore, in
the way that Lou Gehrig and Mickey Mantle were," says
Carroll. "The picture is a lot more blurred nowadays."

Washington Post researcher Rob Thomason contributed to this report.

<http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A52450-2003Jan27.html>

===================================================+

 

Date: Monday, January 27, 2003 9:48 AM
Subject: "The Pianist," Polanski's latest masterpiece

[Now showing in Knoxville at the Downtown West cinema.]

In the Ghetto: Polanski's latest masterpiece

Film review by David Orr

"The Pianist" is Roman Polanski's new film about a brilliant young Jewish
concert pianist in Nazi-occupied Poland. This stark picture grabs you in
the first five minutes and doesn't let go until the final frame.

The audience -- primarily of people old enough to have lived through that
war -- applauded at the end of the credit sequence, and for good reason.
This picture comes closer than anything ever shown to evoking the terror
and torment of the Holocaust. In this instance, it is the story of the
Warsaw Ghetto, and it is a shocking one. One of Polanski's greatest
achievements is conveying a palpable sense of what it must have felt like
to endure that existence -- or succumb. Rockets, grenades and rifle shots
exploded all around. Random executions and death by starvation and
disease become a near-constant, mind-numbing background montage upon
which the personal struggle account of The Pianist unfolds.

I knew after the first fifteen minutes that this would roundly trump
"Schindler's List" both as film-making and as story-telling. Spielberg's
version of the Nazi death camp from which were liberated Jewish prisoners
employed in the factory of a Herr Schindler was shot in black and white
to create a bleak mood. Often the film feels as if it is intended as a
soft-focus nightmare; at any rate it did not strike me as particularly
realistic and did not move me. "The Pianist" was filmed in color but the
colors of the world of the Warsaw Ghetto are predominantly grey and
black.

The daily abuse and terror that hundreds of thousands of Jews lived
through, and so many died of, is keenly felt: the bitter cold, hunger,
humiliation, and the constant fear of sudden, unprovoked SS brutality...
It was difficult at times to understand how anyone could muster up the
courage to go on living.

It's one thing to read about the horrors of those days; it's certainly
another thing to have survived them. "The Pianist" accomplishes its aim
of bringing the viewer into the ghetto and giving a glimpse of life on
the inside of that wall, and the constant fear of death.

The film's themes of love, mercy, hope and beauty are often overwhelmed
by intense hatred, pain and despair.

Sadly, the Warsaw Ghetto in 1943 appeared to be not all that different
from some of the neighborhoods under siege in the West Bank and Gaza
today. Let's hope that the fate of so many Polish Jews at the hands of
Nazis does not await the Palestinians cowering in their fetid refugee camps.

Racial, religious and ethnic hatred act as poison to a functioning
society. We see the stirrings of it today in our own society as certain
Christian fundamentalist leaders paint Muslims as enemies of the West.
And the hard-right factions of the Israeli government threaten to draw
the US into a terror war that could erupt into World War III, a war of a
scale unlike any that has ever been fought, and from which many innocent
people would likely die.

The reduction of the beautiful city of Warsaw to a mounds of rubble is
only a glimpse of the damage wrought by World War II. Doubtless we will
see in the coming years at the hands of gifted filmmakers astonishing
renditions of the other atrocities of that era. I look forward with grim
interest the depiction of the fire-bombing of Tokyo and the medieval
showplace of Dresden and the ruination of other great cities of Germany
and Russia. Most importantly, I await the computer animation-enhanced
illustration of the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, from the point of
view of an innocent Japanese family. [I don't expect Spielberg's shop
will make that one.]

We are in a time of ultra-realism in film-making. The technology now
exists to portray on screen the sights and sounds of war in the most
dramatic (and sickening) fashion. This development may yet prove to have
more impact on human history than any other advance in recent times, for
it serves to bring to the masses the very images that so many battle
veterans spend the rest of their lives trying to forget. There's nothing
like reminding people in the most graphic way possible of the reality,
the brutality of warfare, to help build support for peace -- an issue of
great urgency to all of us today.

Playing Chopin on the piano never sounded so important, so political. In
one of the film's most poignant ironies, the protagonist finds himself in
a situation where his survival depends on keeping quiet to escape
detection by the Gestapo yet he is in the same room with a piano. It's
one more form of torture.

The ultimate message of "The Pianist" is that beauty and mercy transcend
hate, despite the most destructive war in history of Western
civilization. And we need that message now more than ever, on the eve of
what could be a long period of darkness. "The Pianist" reminds us that
our survival depends not on force and might and intimidation but on our
ability to see humanity in everyone -- and keep alive the humanity that
lives within each of us.

===================================================+



Date: Thursday, January 23, 2003 9:10 PM
Subject: Rove paints Bush as 'populist'; critics disagree

KnoxNews
 
http://www.knoxnews.com/kns/politics/article/0,1406,KNS_356_1694078,00.html

Rove paints Bush as 'populist'; critics disagree

By BILL STRAUB
January 23, 2003
Scripps-Howard News Service

Meet President George W. Bush - populist.

The man who entered the White House as a "compassionate conservative" now
considers himself a champion of the "little guy" said Karl Rove, his top
political adviser, and the economic plan that critics have trashed as a sop
to the rich is in reality aimed at the middle class.

"He is a populist," said Rove, comparing Bush to his political hero,
President Theodore Roosevelt. "Give him a choice between Wall Street and
Main Street and he'll choose Main Street every time."

The label is apt, Rove told a gathering of reporters, even though blush is a
millionaire oilman who came from wealth and whose father also served as
president. The proof is in Bush's $670 billion tax cut proposal, which he
said would place a greater burden on the wealthy by removing low-income
payers from the rolls.

"He thinks wealth is too important to be left to the wealthy," Rove said.

Bush, who owns a 1,600 acre ranch in Texas, is not very often characterized
as a populist, a term generally used to describe politicians who support the
interests of working people over corporations. In the past, in fact, Bush
has accused populists who deride his economic plan as engaging in "class
warfare."

Republican populists are relatively rare. The prime populist in current
times is commentator and former presidential candidate Pat Buchanan, who
trumpeted a protectionist trade policy during the campaign. Even then,
Buchanan abandoned the GOP to run on the Reform Party slate.

Democrats familiar with Bush's political and personal background were
dubious about Rove's claim. James Carville, the campaign strategist who
managed former President Bill Clinton's successful 1992 effort, dared Rove
to run a campaign presenting Bush as a populist in 2004.

"He is obviously much smarter than anybody else and I urge him to take his
observation and tee it up," Carville said.

The public perceives that the president "doesn't really have an answer for
things," Carville said.

"His answer for everything is to give a tax cut to his campaign
contributors," he said. "You can't go out in a black church and talk about
faith-based initiative and change that perception in people."

Stan Greenberg, a Democratic pollster, said surveys show the image of Bush
being friendly with the wealthy is firmly imbedded in the public's mind.

"On the question of whether George Bush is for the wealthy, it's just a
fact," Greenberg said. "It's just a given. The president stepped up, led
with dividend tax cuts and I think the public has reacted by saying, wrong
balance here.

"It is, in fact, for the wealthy - but the symbols of this plan communicate
it's for the wealthy," Greenberg said.

(E-mail Bill Straub at StraubB@shns.com)

===================================================+

 

Date: Monday, January 20, 2003 8:22 PM
Subject: Enviro conference at Fresno State stirs debate

http://www.fresnobee.com/local/story/5920571p-6882734c.html

Meeting on environment stirs debate

By Jim Steinberg, Dennis Pollock
The Fresno Bee
(Published Saturday, January 18, 2003, 5:15 AM)

A February conference at Fresno State on "revolutionary environmentalism"
offers a chance to bridge gaps between rival partisans and should not
inspire fear, participants and organizers said Friday.

Academic experts on the environmental movement say that California State
University, Fresno, will be the last place to worry about violence Feb.
13-14 when activists gather for the conference "Revolutionary Environmentalism: A Dialogue
Between Activists and Academics."

But the concern, even alarm, that something ugly could unfold persists.
Fresno police have contingency plans, Clovis police have advised
concerned auto dealers to add security and the agriculture industry plans to take precautions.

Police Chief Jerry Dyer says he accepts organizers' best intentions --
and is preparing in case plans run awry.

"Based on the information we have been provided, the intent is to create
dialogue," he said Friday. "Other information has been provided to us
regarding past gatherings that has caused us some concern. ... We are
working closely with Fresno State police, and will provide them whatever
assistance they require."

Groups such as Earth Liberation Front, Animal Liberation Front and
EarthFirst! are expected. The goals of those organizations alarm business
leaders.

Auto dealers along Shaw Avenue point to Earth Liberation Front's role in
torching sport utility vehicles in Pennsylvania.

Dan Bartell, the dean of the School of Agriculture at Fresno State, which
is not involved in the conference, called the event "unbelievably
mismanaged."

He believes the university will need to safeguard its livestock units
where "we do a lot of work for industry on animal health, breeding
programs and safety of food. Also, we do a lot of grant and contract work
with private entities. Will people support us in the future if [the
university] is hosting these people? We had not been on the radar screen
before. Now we are."

Alarm in the agricultural arena spilled well beyond the Fresno city
limits. In Modesto on Friday, the conference was a hot topic at a Western
United Dairymen board of directors meeting.

"Our board is very concerned," said Michael Marsh, the group's chief
executive officer. "Free speech underpins American democracy, but as we
have seen in Oklahoma City, New York City and Washington, D.C., our
nation cannot and must not countenance terror -- whether economic,
political, religious or environmental."

Marsh said the concern centers on "reckless disregard that some of the
participants have already expressed for public safety and health."

Documented incidents connected to environmental terrorism in the Valley
have been limited, though research centers based in Parlier have taken
precautions to avoid them in recent years. In 2001, Earth Liberation
Front took credit for a fire at a Visalia cotton gin owned by Delta &
Pine Land Co., a major supplier of genetically engineered cotton seeds.

Elsewhere, vandals destroyed research work, including four raids at
University of California, Davis, research fields and other locations
including the Seminis Vegetable Seeds Co. in Woodland.

"It bothers me that people work hard and pay taxes to build something,
and other people destroy it," said Fred Swanson, superintendent of
Kearney Research and Extension Center in Parlier.

John Harris, who raises beef and produce on Fresno County's west side,
said he has been in contact with the sheriff's office and with the
Federal Bureau of Investigation.

"You're [Fresno State] bringing known terrorists to the area who have a
record of severe violence and vandalism, no respect for private property
and other people's rights," Harris said.

His ranch has been targeted by activists in the past, Harris said, and
will have heightened security during the conference. He said that "a few
years back" someone painted ALF, the initials for Animal Liberation
Front, on water tanks at the ranch. In addition, he said, his staff
members took pictures of two of the invited activists -- Craig Rosebraug
and Leslie Pickering -- as they were photographing his feedlot about a
year ago.

Kerman grower Paul Betancourt said he is concerned about what the
participants will do aside from any campus program: "They're not here
just to talk."

Fears of eco-violence are groundless, said conference participant and
professor Rik Scarce, who teaches science and technology studies at
Michigan State University and wrote "Eco-Warriors: Understanding the
Radical Environmental Movement."

"What I hope this conference will do for the Fresno community, and
generally as it gets exposure, is for people to consider in positive ways
what they are doing in their business and daily lives that might need to
be changed for this planet," he said.

Businesses' concerns are unwarranted and misstate the purposes of the
gathering, said conference participant and philosophy professor Steven
Best, who teaches at the University of Texas, El Paso.

Author of "The Postmodern Adventure: Science, Technology and Cultural
Studies at the 3rd Millennium," he calls the Fresno gathering a
groundbreaking event.

"This will bring together for the first time, in a national setting,
activists and academics to discuss the ethics and politics of liberation
movements for animals and the Earth. This is a first, with the conscious
intention of bringing together these groups."

Best called Fresno State "very brave and courageous. ... If we can't
speak freely at a university, I don't know where we can. We are not there
to do anything but talk."

University President John Welty turned aside questions of courage and
said he neither approved nor disapproved of specific events on campus.
The political science department is sponsoring this exchange.

"The role of the university is really to provide a place where ideas can
be freely exchanged and dialogues can occur," he said.

The university is prepared to deal with any disruptions, Welty said, but
he doubts there will be any.

"This is focused mainly on students and faculty," he said. "Most are
classroom activities. This has been and will be a topic of discussion in
most places in the world. It is better to understand the individuals
advocating these positions."

The reporters can be reached at jsteinberg@fresnobee.com

dpollock@fresnobee.com or 441-6330.

===================================================+

 

Date: Thursday, January 16, 2003 12:04 AM
Subject: Lost And Found

Plague Vials lost, Then Found
By Betsy Blane,The Associated Press

LUBBOCK, Texas - About 30 vials of the plague that were reported
missing at Texas Tech University were found Wednesday in a mysterious
episode that triggered a terrorism-alert plan and showed how jittery Americans
are over the threat of a biological attack.

The FBI refused to say how it had accounted for the vials. However, an
FBI official in Washington, speaking on condition of anonymity, said
authorities believe the samples of the lethal bacteria were simply destroyed and not
properly accounted for, rather than stolen or misplaced.

FBI agent Lupe Gonzalez said a criminal investigation was continuing.

Later Wednesday, a professor at the university was arrested by the FBI
and booked into the Lubbock County Jail, according to jailer Keith Tucker. It
wasn't immediately clear why he was taken into custody.

The samples, about 30 of the 180 the school was using for research on the
treatment of plague, were reported missing to campus police Tuesday night.

``We have accounted for all those missing vials and we have determined
that there is no danger to public safety whatsoever,'' Gonzalez said at a news
conference in Lubbock.

Plague - along with anthrax, smallpox and a few other deadly agents - is
on a watch list distributed by the government, which wants to make sure
doctors and hospitals recognize a biological attack quickly.

Health officials say 10 to 20 people in the United States contract plague
each year, usually through infected fleas or rodents. The plague can be
treated with antibiotics, but about one in seven U.S. cases is fatal.

Texas Tech said that officials thought it was ``prudent'' to get law
enforcement involved because of current concerns about bioterrorism.

The FBI sent agents to Lubbock. The Centers for Disease Control and
Prevention also took part in the investigation. Homeland Security chief
Tom Ridge contacted Lubbock's mayor. About 60 investigators from the FBI and
other agencies converged on the medical school Tuesday night.

A post-Sept. 11 emergency plan was activated, under which Lubbock-area
hospitals and medical personnel were notified to be on the lookout for
cases of plague. But the public was not told about the incident until late
Wednesday morning.

``We didn't want to spread panic,'' Texas Tech Chancellor David Smith
said. ``As it turns out, they were never missing.'' He would not elaborate.

The vials were kept in an area with limited access but without a
surveillance camera, officials said.

Mayor Marc McDougal said the public was not notified because of
information the university received late Tuesday that indicated the missing vials
were not a threat to the public.

``I think when you look how quickly it came down and how it got resolved,
I think it would be hard to second guess'' how we handled it, he said.
``One thing we didn't want to do was cause people to panic.''

The form of the disease called bubonic plague is not contagious. But left
untreated, it can transform into the more dangerous pneumonic plague that
can be spread person to person. The most infamous plague outbreak began in
1347 and killed 38 million people in Europe and Asia within five years.

01/15/03 21:54 EST

Copyright 2003 The Associated Press.

===================================================+


Date: Wednesday, October 30, 2002 5:04 AM
Subject: Death of a River Recent photos of Lake Foul near Hite

http://home.earthlink.net/~rhellics/otherfold/utah2002/river/river.html

===================================================+

 

From: DavidOrr@aol.com
To: <WRECK-REATION@ENVIROLINK.ORG>, <SUEL@MAILMAN.XMISSION.COM>
Date: Tuesday, September 3, 2002 4:55 PM
Subject: Another victim of "Lake Foul"

[Unsafe at any speed, especially when completely stopped... Where is Ralph Nader
when we need him? Let's ban those houseboats before they kill again!]

 

CO gas contributes to Lake Powell death
Aug 28 2002
By Seth Muller
Lake Powell Chronicle

 

A young girl became the first carbon-monoxide death on Lake Powell this
year after she attempted to wash her hair along side a cabin cruiser with
a running generator.

The pre-teen girl, whose name, address and exact age were not released by
the National Park Service, was found floating in four feet of water under
the side of the 26-foot boat. Medics treated another young girl, who also
washed her hair at the back of the boat, for carbon-monoxide poisoning,
giving NPS officials a reason to believe the dangerous gas contributed to
the death.

According to park service reports, the incident took place shortly after
1 p.m. on Aug. 17 in Halls Creek Bay -- and rangers responded within
minutes of the call and attempted to resuscitate the girl.

Members of the group reported to park service the two girls washed their
hair together, but then one of the girls left the area by the boat to
have lunch while the other girl disappeared.

The girl who left the area to have lunch underwent treatment for carbon
monoxide poisoning at the Bullfrog Clinic and "test results on her
several hours after the incident still indicated a high level of carbon
monoxide present in her blood," reports show.

Most of the 12 carbo- monoxide deaths have involved people swimming,
playing or working at the back of houseboats. No previous reports showed
people dying while bathing alongside of a boat.

"Certainly, these young girls did not know that, along with the warm
water by the exhaust, there was a dangerous level of carbon monoxide
gas," said Char Obergh, NPS Glen Canyon management assistant.Although no
carbon monoxide-related deaths were reported this year prior to the Aug.
17 incident, Obergh said it remains a top concern for the National Park
Service.

"We're trying to get the issue to the forefront nationwide," Obergh said.
"The effort is now being spearheaded at the national level."

Officials with the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health,
along with Dr. Robert Barron of Phoenix --the medical director for the
Glen Canyon National Recreation Area -- are working together on an
ongoing study concerning carbon monoxide in a recreational setting.

Long known as a deadly gas, carbon monoxide poisoning is usually
associated with enclosed areas like mines. But, the carbon monoxide
didn't get linked to boating-related deaths on Lake Powell until 1994.

In fact, Jane McCammon, director of the NIOSH Denver field office, said
testing at the stern of some boats has revealed CO levels at 26,000 parts
per million. She said 1,200 parts per million can be dangerous.

"I was just devastated to see that kind of concentration," McCammon said.

The carbon monoxide drowning became the fifth reported accidental death
on Lake Powell this summer, the most recent death happening at the
swimming area known as "The Chains." Reports show Christophe Thibault,
21, of Paris, went for a swim around 6 p.m. on July 13 and did not return
to the group with whom he was traveling by 7 p.m., according to Coconino
Sheriff's Lt. Ron Anderson. The sheriff's office is involved in the
investigation. The next day, park service divers discovered the man's
body in approximately 15 feet of water.

Less than three weeks before, an employee who works at Bullfrog marina
drowned June 24 after attempting to swim across a cove at the north end
of Lake Powell. Carlos Ferrera, a foreign national, was the reported
drowning victim. Another accidental death also occurred in the Bullfrog
area when a 4-year-old died on the shores of Bullfrog North. A four-drive
vehicle reportedly struck and ran over the toddler during the April 27
incident.

A month earlier on March 25, Richelle Holder, 44, of Aurora, Colo., was
killed a boat crash on the San Juan Arm and Thomas Holder,

 

(C)Lake Powell Chronicle 2002

===================================================+

Date: Saturday, August 3, 2002 11:55 AM
Subject: Juror Talks about the Bari vs. FBI Trial

http://www.monitor.net/monitor/0207a/judibaritrial13.html

Albion Monitor
July 16, 2002

Juror Talks about the Bari vs. FBI Trial

by Nicholas Wilson

Acting on a motion filed by two Bay Area newspapers, the judge in the
Judi Bari vs. FBI case partially lifted an unusual gag order she placed
on jurors after they returned a $4.4 million verdict against former FBI
agents and Oakland police officers. But most jurors either did not return
repeated phone calls or said they did not want to talk to the media.

Juror Karen Latinis spoke briefly to a Press Democrat reporter, but when
contacted by MONITOR last week, she said she had changed her mind about
talking to the media after she received a deluge of requests.

Juror Mary Nunn, a Contra Costa County resident, granted a lengthy
interview which is excerpted below.

MONITOR: You are the only juror who is willing to talk about your
experience.

Mary Nunn: I really want to tell my story because I felt really
passionate about it. And for so long you couldn't talk about it. I think
if you don't speak out about it and tell the truth about what happened,
and how it was manipulated, then people won't know. And then every time
they read something about the FBI they'll be taken in. I think they
really need to know the other side of it, so they'll be enlightened. If
you suppress it and don't talk like the rest of them are doing, then you
don't back up what we stood for that day. Do you see?

MONITOR: There were several mysteries in the verdict. One of them was
why the jury was undecided on Darryl Cherney's false arrest.

Nunn: That was purposefully done so that he could have a shot at
retrying it. We had a stubborn juror. She grew up in a very protected
environment -- a totally different world. She's never seen police
corruption in her life or seen police penetrate her neighborhood or any
of that. She thought of them sort of in a good way, like "Why would they
jeopardize their jobs?" But they do it every day. They're just not
caught. The only way they get in trouble is if you have a video in hand.
It's unfortunate that many of the jurors were just so far removed from
that. I'm sure there are some great cops out there, but unfortunately
there are some undesirables too.

MONITOR: Another mystery is why the jury decided no one was liable for
conspiracy. Five defendants were found liable for First Amendment
violations, and in order for there to be no conspiracy they would all
have to have acted independently.

Nunn: Let me put the setting to you. We get the word we're going to
deliberate. We're not allowed to talk, but people still make comments.
I'm getting a feeling of the rest of my jurors and I have some concerns,
some deep concerns. So we're in there and I shared with one of the jurors
because I thought she could relate. I said to her "I'm really concerned
about how the outcome of this is going to be." She said, "Don't worry. We
all have common sense minds. We can see what's happening here." And I
said, "Yeah. You're right," thinking that she thinks like me.

And then the next day, when we first convened, I think we took a
temperature check on one of the first claims on the form, just to see
where we were all at. When she said what she thought, I was shocked. It
was 180 degrees from what I thought she would say. From that point on I
couldn't convince her otherwise, although she never ever thought that
Judi Bari and Darryl Cherney were carrying the bomb. She was one who felt
that the cops just wouldn't have jeopardized their careers in that way. I
said, "Well, their careers were never in jeopardy. That's one thing you
have to know. Even now their careers are not in jeopardy. You can never
jail them. They'll never go away for time. The only thing you can ever
get out of them is punitive damages, if you ever see that."

Another thing is how long it took Darryl and Judi to get where they had
to get. I wanted them to get something. I saw their hard course over 12
years to get where they had to go, and I didn't know if they had the
time, the means, or the energy to bring it back for a second trial. But
we couldn't get everyone to settle on everything. When you've invested so
much time, and you're passionate, and you want to see them get something,
you start compromising, giving up stuff to get other stuff. So that
conspiracy claim, that's one that our two socialites, let's say, couldn't
relate to. And both these women who couldn't relate came from great
upbringings. It's so funny, you know, the rich and the famous never want
to see the small guy get anything. (laughs) They'll hoard it all for
themselves, but god forbid that somebody beneath them get a crumb. You
see? So this is just the mentality. It's a sad mentality.

They just can't see that the cops can do bad stuff. I'm glad it was on
the TV news this week about the cops beating that young handcuffed
15-year-old (in Inglewood, California). Maybe it might dawn a light in
them (the reluctant jurors). I've never had to deal with corrupt police
personally, but I live a pretty clean life. I don't invite those things.
But neither did Judi and Darryl invite those things.

MONITOR: But Judi and Darryl did take risks, and they were out there
confronting cops and loggers a lot, risking being dealt with violently.

Nunn: I would imagine some of the things I've been saying lately is
taking risk. A lot of my friends and people say, "Boy, I hope you don't
end up in the bay." But is it worthy? And if I did end up in the bay
would it be worthy? I think it's worthy. I think somebody has to speak
out. It's scary. I'm scared of the police now, and I have no reason to
be. But you know I drive late at night. I start my day at 3:30 in the
morning. I'm all alone on the freeway. They don't have any reason to
target me. But just the fact that I have a big mouth.

When I started that trial I didn't know anything about environmentalists
or that movement. I didn't know anything about this group. And I was kind
of like, well, maybe they acted up a bit; maybe the police were worthy. I
went in there with that attitude. But when I sat and listened to the
evidence, and I saw all that had happened, I did a 180-degree turn in
that courtroom. And then my heart just poured out to them. I couldn't
believe what they had been through. So there was a deciphering point. I
became very passionate. I became like I'll be darned if they don't win.
It was exhausting deliberating with the people that were hard to get
through to.

MONITOR: Did you think the police and FBI witnesses were lying in court?

Nunn: They absolutely were lying. I didn't just think that they were
lying. The search warrant showed that they were lying. Their
inconsistency showed that they were lying. Their stories didn't jibe, not
one together. Each one was evading the question or saying they didn't
remember. These people are notorious for note keeping. They're notorious
for their files. So all of a sudden they don't recall anything? Well you
had twelve years to catch up. Why didn't you prepare yourself? Why didn't
you go at least to acting classes and get lessons in how to present
yourself in a desirable fashion on the stand? Because they were not
desirable characters to me, not one of them.

MONITOR: What did you think of the bomb experts and the conflicting
testimony about where the bomb was located?

Nunn: I was already convinced the bomb was under the seat. I already
knew that the poor girl wasn't carrying the bomb. It wasn't her
character, and I didn't even know her.

MONITOR: You got a chance to see the actual bombed car.

Nunn: I didn't have to see the car. It was nice that I saw the car. I
saw the seat. I saw the injuries. I saw her character. I saw her
following. You don't get 50-plus people to fill a courtroom each day if
you're not a good person. It just doesn't happen.

You know what really proved the case was we started looking through all
the arrest reports, all the different documents. It just all kind of
spelled it out. If some on the jury wouldn't believe what we said we had
documents to prove it. So we would turn to the page and say "Here it is.
You're looking for it? Well here it is." You didn't believe that this was
done by this time, or this hour? Here it is. This is when this one was on
the scene. This is how he contributed. We almost re-presented the case to
the ones who were ignorant or didn't take notes.

MONITOR: Did you take a lot of notes?

Nunn: I took all kinds of notes. We weren't allowed to keep them, but I
remember a lot of what I wrote. Like when Doyle would repeatedly say "I
don't recall," I wrote "Does this guy really think this is going to
excuse his whole behavior?" It's not! You're accountable for your
actions.

MONITOR: He would never own up, would he?.

Nunn: None of them would. And then (Special Agent Phillip) Sena was so
angry, so defensive. He was just, uffff! He might as well not have come
to court, because his whole presence was an insult.

You had two different types of people in the courtroom. You had the
people of Earth First! that were very subtle, very demure, very mellow.
And then you had the FBI agents. Doyle actually acted like a goof. He
kind of laughed things off and played them down as if we would relate. I
was taking it all very seriously, more like "how dare you?" We all knew
they (Judi and Darryl) were innocent.

What was so trying was associating the money with the deeds, coming up
with a figure. I asked for $40 million. Another juror requested $60
million, and then the one with the Rolex watch said $100,000. There you
go with that rich person mentality, you see? They can have all they want
for themselves, but nothing for anyone else, you see?

MONITOR: I remember Tony Serra in his closing arguments saying "We want
millions to send a message ..."

Nunn: The thing is with them, my conservative little group, is they
didn't relate to Tony Serra. He preached like a reverend. He was fine by
me. I knew that he was very passionate. I knew he was very involved and
had invested many years and lots of emotion, so I could relate to Tony
Serra. But I'll tell you, the rest of my jurors couldn't relate to that.
They thought it was more a hunger for money. I told them what kind of car
Tony drove. He had a little Chevrolet or something. He could care less.
They were talking about his suits and everything. They judged people by
how they looked, how they dressed. It was ridiculous. I told them you
have to focus on content of character. It doesn't make any difference
what they have on. They're a different breed.

I come from the East Bay, and I come from more meager beginnings. After
my father died my mother and I lived in the projects in Richmond. I was
the only white girl in a ten-block area. But my experiences were good for
me. I've learned so much from what I've been subjected to. I think it's
made me more well-rounded. I have no desire to live in a mansion.
Something happens to a person when they get to that level. They
disassociate or something. They just become cold and distant, and it's
just nothing I've desired to be.

MONITOR: Jurors are selected at random from all over the area, so you
get a mixture.

Nunn: But you know most of them are very conservative, the majority. You
have these conservative people who don't want to bend. One was like,
"What money will bring closure?" It's not the money, it's the principle.
This is the only thing we have to put the sting to them. We can't put
them in jail. It was a hard course, and it was hard for them to relate.
But I wanted big money, and I wanted Darryl to have his false arrest
claim. I'm one of the ones who would not go for a not liable verdict on
that claim because he deserved that so much.

I was so tired and so worn out because they would not discuss money. I
kept bringing it up and saying we need to discuss the money. The majority
wanted low money. There were only two of us who wanted high money. Only
two! But when the money got out I was just glad there was going to be
some. I was like, divide it up how you want, but if Darryl gets below $1
million I'm not playing. I'm going to hang this whole thing up and we're
going to give the case to someone more deserving. I said at least give
him back his bail money. You're not even going to give him back the
$10,000 that they robbed from him? They're from a different world!

MONITOR: Eighty percent of the total damage award was for First
Amendment violations. How did the defendants violate the First Amendment
rights? What acts did they do?

Nunn: One that really touched me was the nightly TV news spots that (OPD
Lt. Michael) Sims delivered, smearing their name. It was just character
assassination. It was just horrible. Sending that all over the Bay Area
and who knows where else. "These are bombers. There are no other
suspects. Our primary focus is on these two." It was horrifying. How do
you rebound from that? They lost their ballot Proposition 130 that year,
not to mention the trees. They lost their face in society. Judi's kids
were teased and taunted at school. They had to walk around in fear, never
knowing where this crazy bomber is at.

MONITOR: Did you feel the defendants deliberately framed Judi and
Darryl?

Nunn: I think from the moment that (Special Agent Frank) Doyle came on
that scene he went right to work, and they followed him. I think they
were heavily influenced by him. But at a point in time, as they took the
FBI helicopter out in the night, and they searched, and did other
searches prior to that, and all those interviews, I think they finally
came to a determination that, "you know what, we don't have anything
here." By that morning when they got back from the all-night search they
could have let them go. At any time they could start doing right, but
they wouldn't. They kept up with it. So, yeah, it was deliberate,
absolutely. There was a point when they could have tried to clean it up.
It was all done wrong anyway. I mean, what you do is search, get some
evidence, then you go arresting folks.

MONITOR: Were you living in Santa Rosa at the time of the bombing in
1990?

Nunn: I probably was, but I was so young. I must have been in my early
20s. I don't remember any news stories about Judi. The only thing I do
remember is Earth First hanging something on the Golden Gate Bridge. So
what? You know I've lived near Berkeley, and all my life I've seen people
out waving signs and doing their things.

MONITOR: There are plenty of conservatives around too.

Nunn: I was submerged in a room with them, believe me. I was the black
sheep of the jury room. (laughs) I didn't mean to be, but I was. And
that's because I was so driven and so passionate. I was very moved by
them (the plaintiffs and supporters). I fell in love with them, every
last one of them.

MONITOR: When Darryl Cherney sang that song, "Spike a Tree for Jesus."
How did that come across?

Nunn: (laughs) First of all, I'm raised Roman Catholic. My father came
from Poland. I'm first generation American. My mother's from Canada. I
don't have anything to do with the Catholic Church today, but you
couldn't get more Christian than me. I have an intimate, intimate
relationship with God. I don't belong to any church. I'm just in love
with my Father, okay? The only thing that song reminded me of is the
crucifixion of characters that the police did to that poor guy. (she
cries a little) That's the only way the Spike a Tree for Jesus thing ...
come on, how am I going to take offense at that? I know the bible. I know
the word. I know how Jesus was put to death. I know who was responsible.
A song's not going to, like, twist that.

MONITOR: Was there discussion about the song in the jury room?

Nunn: No. None of them were Christians. None of them were religious
people. I mean, they may have a sense of it, but it wasn't their essence.

There was one gentleman that, when we first convened in the room and we
were trying to figure out how we were going to start things, he kind of
took control. He got some chalk and he stood in the front of the room and
started making columns. Nobody asked him to do this, he just did it.
Then, all of a sudden, he became E. F. Hutton, Rock of Gibraltar. Not to
me, but to some of the ones who were more like him. They looked to him
when he talked and they kind of heeded what he said. But the rest of us
were like, "Eaghhh! This guy's gonna be a problem. (laughs)

What's so ironic is that he would have this stance, but all of a sudden
he started saying, "You know what? It WAS a violation." I was like, "I
can't believe you're talking like this." (laughs) And it was great! I'm
glad he was having an awakening. He started reading the material. We
started sharing our notes. We started showing him where it was said and
how it was said and here's the proof. And then once he saw it, then of
course ... See, people might have selective attention, selective hearing,
tuning some things out during the trial. But we all had notes, and we all
shared them. If we had something that was contradictory it was "Wait a
minute! I remember this, and we'd search our papers and find it and say,
"this is what was said, and this is how he said it. If I need to I'll
have the judge read it back." So we were really making our points, but in
a very civil manner. We all had a very nice rapport.

[continued...]

Subject: Juror Talks about the Bari vs. FBI Trial (pt. 2)

 

MONITOR: There was one juror who seemed to be the one who took the most
notes. She had an armload of notepads by the end of the trial.

Nunn: Yes, she's a great girl. She wanted more punitive damages.
Although she was conservative, she fought really hard for the plaintiffs.
She would put things in perspective in a way where she could say what I
wanted to say but she could connect with the others. So she was very
fundamental in getting that verdict as well. She worked really hard on
that. She used to work for the police department. She knew how they
operated. She was quite a favorable aspect to our deliberating because
she had all this insight from that inside realm, because she had actually
worked in a police department.

MONITOR: How was the foreperson chosen?

Nunn: Somebody asked who wanted to be the forewoman. I raised my hand,
and the English lady raised her hand. I think her friend said, "She'll be
the forewoman," and I said fine, whoever. And that was the end of it.
Nobody did any big bid for it. Whoever was willing, and she was voted in
I guess. She was a nice woman. She gave me a hug afterwards.

That's one thing about her being British. She always came on time or
early, never late. She was cute in a lot of ways. She was the head of a
bank, so she was very good with the numbers.

Another one of the jurors was like a child who grew up in a protective
bubble. This girl just couldn't go for the cops deliberately doing wrong.
She would defend herself saying, "Believe me. I don't think they were
carrying the bomb. I just think the cops were justified with what they
had, with the rebar in Cherney's truck ...." If he was being arrested for
spiking a road or a tree or whatever you could do with that piece of
material, okay. But it had nothing to do with this particular crime, so
it didn't fit. And I kept trying to make that point with her and she'd
go, "But I still think, with those books in his car, and ..." whatever
else, you know?

MONITOR: She cited books in his car?

Nunn: The books from the founder of Earth First! The little thing on the
tree-spiking. And I kept restating the testimony that there was one
incident in Idaho, and never in California, and never by these two. You
can't do guilt by association. I fought, and fought and fought. I did it
by the facts and by what I learned. I didn't try to do anything illicit.
Everything was real, and that's why I was so moved, because it was real.

MONITOR: How about the sheriff-elect of Humboldt County who testified
that there has never been a tree-spiking or sabotage incident in the past
20 years in Humboldt or Mendocino Counties?

Nunn: Right. Darryl and Judi didn't even have a criminal history. Darryl
was on a bridge one day. So what? And they said Darryl was in Arizona,
but he was never arrested for that. I don't care where he was or what he
did, he was never arrested for those things. They just don't strike me as
people who would do those kinds of things. They're both educated, and
they're passionate. How do you go from loving something like a tree to
wanting to go hurt people with a bomb that have blood flowing through
them. If you're going to love a tree, you're going to love a person more
so. It didn't fit their character. It didn't fit any of those people's
character in that room (the Earth First! supporters). Those people had an
essence of light about them. You could feel their whole essence across
the room, all of them. They were a beautiful group of people. I don't
even know them, but that was what their presence showed. They were so
mellow and laid back and earthy and kind. Come on! They didn't fit the
description of people who would try to hurt people. When they took the
stand their personality was very demure and mellow. The judge would say,
"You need to answer that," and they'd say, "okay." You know they didn't
get excited. They were just a different breed. They're not into things
like bombing. Sometimes you just know. They really touched me and I was
really moved by them. At one point I wanted to run away and become one of
them. They have such an ease about them. They seem to not have a lot of
stress going on, you know?

MONITOR: What do you hope the public will learn from this case?

Nunn: I think people need to get more involved. They need to write more
letters. They need to take more of a stand and protect one another. And
when they see things like this happening, don't just take it for the
truth what the cops and the media are telling you. You need to really
take a look at it, and investigate it. Take a stance and protect people
and speak out. Because if you don't it's going to be covered up and no
one's going to pay attention, and no one will ever be held accountable.
People might say it's just one incident, but one incident turns into
multiple, and pretty soon it's you.

MONITOR: Were there any of the lawyers who made any impression on you?

Nunn: I love Mr. (Robert) Bloom. He's the suavest man I ever saw in my
life. Definitely. He was so smooth in the way he questioned the
witnesses. I would just say to myself privately, "Mr. Bloom, go to work."
Because that's exactly what he was doing. If I ever got myself in a jam I
would run to find him. He's phenomenal.

Mr. (Dennis) Cunningham had the innocence of a young boy. We just loved
him. The way he would fumble, it was so cute! It wasn't done
intentionally. He was just darling! We loved him!

MONITOR: Are you saying that most of the jurors felt that way?

Nunn: Oh, we loved him, all of us, collectively. He just had an
innocence about him.

MONITOR: And you've already talked about Tony Serra.

Nunn: Well, I liked Tony Serra. I think he's a great lawyer. The others
were just too conservative. They don't know what Tony Serra is about and
what he stands for either. I think Tony Serra did a fine job. I think
they collectively did a great job. I think they were a great
representation.

MONITOR: How about Justice Department attorney Joe Sher?

Nunn: What people didn't like about him was he was holding his hand like
he was holding a cigar. And the young boy (Justice Dept. attorney Dennis
Barghaan), he looked like a kewpie doll, like a baby kewpie doll. He was
just trying too hard, but he had nothing to try with. Honestly, they were
so agitating. I was like, "Where are you going with this. You have
absolutely nothing. But we'll play your game if we have to." It was very
boring, but I suffered through it.

If you really want me to be honest about the attorneys for the
defendants, I thought, "God, if this is what the U.S. Government has, if
this is their best, wow, it's pretty sad. They're so conservative and so
tight. I don't know, they're just a different breed, you know? They're
almost like military lawyers.

MONITOR: Do you know that Joe Sher's next case is defending Henry
Kissinger?

Nunn: (laughs) Good luck!

MONITOR: Many trial watchers were amazed because no jurors dropped out
during the trial except the two who said they had problems on the first
day. The judge said at the beginning we could expect to lose one juror
per week.

Nunn: Really? Not me. I was in it to win it. I wanted something great to
come of it. I just wanted Darryl and Judi to have some sense of
exoneration. I really couldn't give that to them in total, but I just
wanted them to feel better. I just can't stand to see people mistreated.
I hate it with all my heart. When people get a raw deal I like nothing
better than to do them some righteousness, you see?

There are a lot of people that I work with who were like, "Right on! It's
about time. They were all for it. A lot of them were concerned for me
that something might happen to me. But I don't know if that would ever
happen. I hope not. They could come plant drugs in my house or something.
I mean you never know. I don't do those things, but I don't trust them.
I'm just scared of them after what they did to Judi and Darryl.

I also want to add this. While we were deliberating on the anniversary of
the bombing, one juror stood up and said, "Why don't we send a note to
the court and ask everyone to have a moment of silence." We took a moment
of silence at the minute of the event. We all got quiet and put our heads
down and had a moment of silence in memory of the event. I thought that
was kind of touching. That might show you the feel, the flavor of the
atmosphere in the jury room. There was a lot of debating. I think they
really wanted to be fair.

MONITOR: There was a big rally outside the courthouse that day. Did they
tell you anything about that?

Nunn: No. We already knew better not to stop and look when we left the
courthouse during the rally. That didn't influence any of us. All I saw
was people playing music and dancing and some kind of puppet. I couldn't
even make out what it was. I didn't know what was going on. I just knew
they were having a celebration. No, that rally didn't influence us.

MONITOR: The defense made a big issue of it though.

Nunn: Because they were just reaching. They were reaching for anything.
They were reaching for flies. They had nothing. I thought "this is so
ridiculous." It didn't affect us. The Earth First! people go out and
convene and have their music. We knew this is what they were about
anyway. So how would that move us? This is how they got their word out.
And it was not only them. The whole time we were there people were doing
protests about Israel and Afghanistan, and all that was going on. We're
accustomed to that. We're from the Bay Area. I grew up in Richmond and
Berkeley for God's sake.

MONITOR: The defense motion claimed that the plaintiffs' attorneys
deliberately timed their speeches so they would be heard by the jury
coming out of the courthouse.

Nunn: I didn't even hear any attorneys. It was a quick walk to the car.
I didn't see any attorneys talking. I saw Mr. Bloom standing on the
outskirts, and he kind of saw us walking out. But he didn't have a mike
in his hands, and he was far back from it.

MONITOR: When the judge called you all into the courtroom one by one to
ask you about the rally, every single person said it had no effect
whatsoever. Only one person said she was able to recognize Tony Serra's
voice on the PA system, but she couldn't understand any of the words that
he said. Nobody else said that they heard anybody's voice.

MONITOR: What did you think of the FBI agents on the witness stand.

Nunn: This was the best of the best, the cream of the crop, the FBI. Big
titles. Big income. All of them retire before their heads turn gray. But
they don't even have their stories straight. Now every time I hear
anything about the FBI where they made an arrest I question it. That's
what this experience taught me.

You know when they were playing the tape of Lt. Sims on TV news that just
made me cry. I was so moved. I want to tell you something. I'm no easy
girl to cry. I'm pretty strong. I've been through some things, I'll tell
you. But one thing I'll never let this world do is harden my heart.
Anyway, I was still crying when I was back in the jury room with those
people, and they all ignored me. It was really funny. They tried to
pretend I wasn't crying. That was some pretty moving stuff, and I felt
what's wrong with these people that they don't feel it. The blonde lady
(Darlene Comingore) who was there for Judi Bari's estate was crying too.
Most of those jurors were a different breed. The people today are, what
do you call it ... desensitized, you know? I don't know. I just always
got a heart for folks. Don't ever let this world harden your heart.

MONITOR: What did you think of Judi Bari on video?

Nunn: I was really moved by Judi Bari, the stances she took and the way
she stood up to those people and never gave up the good fight. I drove
home one day during deliberations, and I was in deep prayer about all
this. I remember saying, "Don't worry Judi. I got your back in this.
There's no way they're going to prevail. I've got your back in this,
girl." I would drive home and say that out loud, hoping she could hear. I
know she can see us from heaven. I know she can see this taking place. I
know she's feeling a little bit better about it. You know? Even though
you went to your grave and you didn't get to see it. You know that God
says not one stone will be unturned. All your bad culprits will be
brought out and brought into account for all their days on the Earth. You
can't just follow the crowd. You're accountable for your own actions.

MONITOR: Did you think Judge Wilken was fair?

Nunn: I guess the judge seemed somewhat fair. She wouldn't let them get
a lot of stuff in, which agitated me at times, and she would stifle Mr.
Bloom, and I really don't think he was offensive. He was being fair and
he was bringing up a lot of points. I guess it's because it's the FBI and
the police, and they're the law. She represents the law. You know?
Inside, deep down, she's with them. Ultimately she'd like to think that
her FBI and police people are walking a righteous line. She wants to
think nice of them, you see? And she probably thought the whole thing was
preposterous and would never get off the ground.

I'll tell you something about this younger generation coming up. We're
not buying it. You know, a lot of these cops that are getting caught are
getting turned in by the younger cops. They're not going for it. We're a
different breed. We're not going for that stuff any more.

MONITOR: Do you think the documents were more important than the live
testimony?

Nunn: I think it was all important. I guess they couldn't alter the
documents. To have documents such as those and to then tell a different
story was really bad. I think the search warrant was the ultimate
cruncher. That was really bad because it showed the lies. A lot of people
don't make a big deal of it. But to me it was a big deal that they wrote
in that affidavit, "We also believe that at 52 California St. there will
be found the makings of bombs." They knew the cops had been in that house
for five hours already. Why would you do that? Because you're trying to
paint this image of these people, you see? They couldn't very well put in
that "we went there and we found nothing, and hence we want to go here
and search some more." So they painted this altered picture of them, and
it was terrible.

MONITOR: Even 12 years later in the courtroom the defense was still
trying to suggest that Darryl and Judi were indeed carrying the bomb.

Nunn: None of the defendants gave reasons for their actions. All they
did was try to blame Darryl and Judi for that bombing. But what they
forgot is the District Attorney already threw it out. That wasn't the
purpose of us being there. We were there to find out if the cops were
guilty, not Darryl and Judi. We already knew they weren't guilty. So they
tried to put out a smokescreen to take us off point. We weren't going for
it, not even for a moment. They must have thought we were morons.
(laughs) They were trying to make us think these people were guilty and
they were justified in what they were doing. But somebody already
deciphered years ago that they weren't. If they were guilty, we wouldn't
even be here. It was ridiculous what they were doing. They should have
focused on why they did what they did instead of trying to put the focus
back on the plaintiffs. If they had given us some reasonable grounds for
doing what they did instead of denying what they did ... everybody was
bouncing it back off one another. Nobody would claim it. So that's what
started looking weird. Everybody agreed with that. None of them could
agree on what happened that day, and these are professional note-takers.
All of a sudden, for this big investigation with all these things
involved, the FBI helicopter, which they don't even take out for missing
kids. I mean come on! But they used it for these two flower children?
Such a waste of the taxpayers' money. Why? Because they want to have big
headlines and they want to have a pay raise? We've caught a bomber!

I wish the plaintiffs the best in life. I wish them nothing but peace and
harmony from here on out. I hope that nobody ever comes to their door and
continues in this aspect and plagues them with these things ever again. I
think they've had enough to last them a lifetime. I wish Darryl safety
and harmony, and hopefully he can breathe a little easier today, and
maybe they won't focus on him any more, and they'll give up on it.

===================================================+

 

Date: Friday, July 26, 2002 4:55 AM
Subject: Giant leaping sturgeon take revenge

Leaping sturgeon become boating hazard

Increasingly, the large fish collide with boats and people.

By JULIE HAUSERMAN, Times Staff Writer
St. Petersburg Times http://www.sptimes.com
July 26, 2002

 

TALLAHASSEE -- Forget sharks, alligators and sting rays. The latest
Florida menace is giant leaping sturgeon.

Gainesville elementary school principal Lacy Redd, 34, was boating on the
Suwannee River over the Memorial Day weekend when a sturgeon, some 5 to 6
feet long and between 130 and 150 pounds, leaped into her family's boat
and knocked her out. She suffered a collapsed lung and five broken ribs.

On July 4, 19-year-old Danny Cordero of Perry was zipping along the
Suwannee on a personal watercraft with his girlfriend when -- WHAM! A
sturgeon knocked them both in the water.

"I don't remember anything," Cordero said. "My girlfriend said it was
like hitting a brick wall. She saw me lying face down in the river. I had
blood all over me. It cracked my teeth and chewed up my gums.

"I get picked on pretty bad. People say: "You got knocked down by a
fish?' It's not any ordinary fish. It's a huge fish."

A sturgeon made headlines in March when a 6-foot-long, 127-pound specimen
washed up in a Shore Acres neighborhood in St. Petersburg. The fish more
typically travel from the Gulf of Mexico up into rivers to spawn in the
spring and summer, then head back to the gulf in the fall. It's a ritual
that went on long before Florida had people driving bass boats and
personal watercraft.

No one keeps statistics on crashes between sturgeon and boaters. Some
people who live on the Suwannee say the collisions are on the rise.

"If they were little, like the size of mullet, that would be one thing,"
said Gilchrist County Sheriff's Chief Harvey Montgomery.

University of Florida researcher Frank Chapman said that in the Suwannee
River, at least, the number of sturgeon hasn't increased in the past 20
years. But boat traffic has risen.

 

Why do the sturgeon jump?

"We don't know," Chapman said. "They just jump!"

They were really jumping the day Redd was hit.

She said she saw a sturgeon jumping ahead of her family's boat as they
cruised the Suwannee. Just as she said to her husband and children, "Look
at . . .," another sturgeon hit her.

"They jump a lot," she said. "It's more common than you'd think."

The fish folded the boat's steering wheel in half. With his kids
panicking, Lacy's husband, Paul, looked for his wife.

"I'll be honest. I thought she was dead," Paul said.

A minute earlier, she had handed their 1-year-old child over to Paul,
which probably saved the child's life.

"The game commission decided to release the fish because it is a
protected species," he said. "I told them: I want that fish. Later, I
found out they released it."

On Fourth of July weekend in 1999, a Gilchrist County sheriff's deputy
was in a boat patrolling the river when a 106-pound, 4-foot-6 sturgeon
leaped through the boat's windshield and knocked the deputy down,
Montgomery said.

"When he called in on the radio, they didn't believe him at first,"
Montgomery said."He said, "I'm serious. I need some help out here!' "

The Sheriff's Office called in a game warden. When the warden saw the
bloody fish in the deputy's boat, he couldn't resist teasing.

"He said, "Well, you know that's a federally protected fish. You're
probably in big trouble for killing that fish!' "

Leaping sturgeon also have been reported in the Yellow River, near
Pensacola. Larry Foshee, 54, had two sturgeon encounters there. The first
time, in 1996, the sturgeon leaped in the boat and "scraped me up," said
Foshee, of Pensacola.

"It was the first time I'd seen one up close and personal," Foshee said.
"He was really rough."

The second time, a sturgeon leaped in front of his 21-foot boat and kept
going.

"He went all the way over the boat. He tore the trolling motor on the
front of the boat.

"It's a scary thing," Foshee said.

"On their backs, they have this dinosaur-looking fin. It's very sharp,"
said Carol Brown, who got hit by a 36-pound sturgeon about 10 years ago,
and had to have plastic surgery to repair her broken nose.

"My children thought an alligator had jumped in the boat," said Brown,
50, of Lake City. "By the grace of God, I lived, because it should have
broken my neck."

At the hospital in Gainesville, nurses took one look at her mashed-up
face and asked what happened.

Brown's husband joked: "I can tell you she'll say "Yes, sir' to me next
time."

Abruptly, the nurses took her husband and two children into another room
for questioning. But the emergency room physician looked at her wounds
and declared, "She had a fish hit her in the face."

One of the few sturgeon keepsakes can be found at The Lighthouse
restaurant in Trenton. In 1995, the fish leaped into a boat carrying
owner Sue Nessmith and her then-husband, James. The fish knocked James
down.

The Nessmiths got special permission to keep the fish, which weighed 70
pounds and was more than 5 feet long. They mounted it and hung it on the
restaurant wall.

Sue Nessmith, 45, still sees leaping sturgeon on the river. And, she
admits, "It makes you kind of leery from time to time."

 

http://www.sptimes.com/2002/07/26/State/Leaping_sturgeon_beco.shtml

===================================================+

 

Date: Monday, June 10, 2002 7:26 PM
Subject: Smoky Mtn bear revolt

[it must be something in the air. or water. or both...]

==========================+++

Smokies issue hungry-bear alert

By Morgan Simmons
Knoxville News-Sentinel staff writer
June 6, 2002

 

Biologists with Great Smoky Mountains National Park say the black bears
are even hungrier than usual this spring.

As a result, park officials are warning visitors to be especially careful
about securing their garbage and food.

"We've issued a bear alert to all park employees," said park biologist
Kim DeLozier. "The bears are active and bold, and they're looking for
food."

Biologists say the park's bears fed well on acorns last fall, and now are
trying to regain the body weight they lost while denning during the
winter. The park is home to an estimated 1,800 black bears, while about
5,000 to 6,000 bears are believed to live in the Southern Appalachians as
a whole.

DeLozier said natural food for the bears will be in short supply until
late June, when the huckleberries, blueberries and blackberries ripen.

"Right now they're losing weight and basically just trying to hold on,"
DeLozier said.

Biologists say there is a high number of juvenile bears this year, and
that right now those bears are just beginning to be weaned away from
their mothers.

DeLozier said that makes them lonely and hungry.

"Once their mothers kick them out, the juveniles are in for a few tough
weeks," he said. "They're more prone to walk into a developed area to
find food."

On Tuesday a jogger along the Brushy Mountain trail in the park told park
officials he had to throw rocks at a bear that was following him.

On May 28 park rangers captured and released a 144-pound male bear at the
Chimney picnic area. That same day a 258-pound male was captured and
released at the Round Bottom horse camp.

The park catches and releases nuisance bears as a method of increasing
their aversion to people.

Backcountry campsites 62 and 64 were closed, and warning signs were
posted at backcountry campsites 26 and 90.

Last month bear activity was reported at the park's Sugarlands
headquarters, Cades Cove campground, Spence Field shelter and backcountry
campsite 28.

On May 7 a 200-pound black bear was captured and released near Spence Field.

On May 23 that same bear had to be captured and destroyed after it ripped
into an unoccupied tent and destroyed sleeping bags and clothes.

"Any time a bear goes into a tent, car or any kind of human space, then
it's too risky to have that animal roaming around people," DeLozier said.

On May 10 a 60-pound female bear was captured at park headquarters and
destroyed due to brain injuries it had suffered in a vehicle collision.

Last week rangers destroyed a female bear that had torn into an office
building of a riding stable inside the park.

On May 14 a 136-pound male bear was captured at the Twin Creeks pavilion
and relocated to the Cherokee National Forest. On May 26 that same bear
was struck and killed by a car on Interstate 40.

Park personnel have been instructed to report immediately any sightings
of bears in developed areas such as campgrounds or picnic areas, as well
as any unusual observations of bears along trails or bears acting sick
and injured.

Park officials have also posted announcements at campgrounds and picnic
areas warning visitors to take extra care in securing their food and
garbage.

The park has intensified its black-bear alert procedures since a
50-year-old elementary school teacher from Cosby was fatally mauled on
May 21, 2000, while hiking in the backcountry near Elkmont Campground.

Since then the park has changed the wording on its warning signs to say
that black bears have killed, not just injured, visitors. The park also
has added training on black bears for seasonal and full-time staff and
put more emphasis on educating visitors, including information on how to
react when black bears show aggression.

"We're trying to be proactive and not just reactive to every situation,"
DeLozier said.

 

Morgan Simmons may be reached at 865-3426321 or simmonsm@knews.com.
Copyright 2002, KnoxNews. All Rights Reserved.

===================================================+

 

Date: Monday, June 3, 2002 7:11 AM
Subject: scientists say a 9.0 quake hit west coast in 1700

Los Angeles Times, 6/2/02:

*****

We Live to Tell the Tale

Survivors' stories, some hundreds of years old, are helping scientists
understand earthquakes

By RENEE TAWA, TIMES STAFF WRITER

 

Live here long enough, and you'll hear the stories unfold--compulsively,
reflexively--as part of the local lore, as part of the way we wrap
earthquakes into the culture of California. The trip wires are everywhere,
10 seconds after a quake when neighbors circle each others' driveways, or
10 years later, as was the case on a May weekend in the Mojave Desert.

Under a broiling sun, on a daylong field trip, 60-year-old Paul Smith and
other locals listened to the science of what happened in the 7.3-magnitude
Landers earthquake--and then layered the information with their memories
of that morning in June 1992: "My wife ran outside in front of the yard,
stark naked, her 10-year-old son wrapped in her arms like this ... " began
Smith, an attorney.

The way we think about earthquakes, sociologists say, is shaped by
influences such as science and popular culture, and by the stories that
are passed on to help make sense of the literal and figurative shifting of the
world beneath our feet. Now, the stories that people tell about
earthquakes, in centuries-old villages and in wired California cities, are
taking on new significance. In a wide-ranging field of study, from
seismology to sociology, earth scientists and other researchers, who once
ignored or overlooked local lore and myths, now are using the stories in
their work. In one project, stories told by Native Americans from far
Northern California to British Columbia played a part in leading
scientists to a blockbuster finding--evidence of a devastating earthquake in 1700.
Scientists had not previously known about the quake, one of the world's
largest at an estimated magnitude of 9, in the Pacific Coast region.

In another project, university researchers are reviewing narratives filed
online by California residents in the past 10 years, some of whom provide
striking accounts of big earthquakes. The stories are giving researchers
an idea of how people think and react when the shaking begins--potentially
valuable information in retooling disaster information campaigns.

Whether told by Northridge residents or by Hoh tribal storytellers, the
stories can sound strikingly similar. Some rely on enduring literary
devices such as simple words, vivid images and cultural metaphor:

* Three hundred years ago or so, a battle between the mighty thunderbird
and an evil whale shook the land, a Hoh tribal tale begins, said
University of Washington research scientist Ruth Ludwin. Her research suggests that
the medicine man who told the story to an ethnographer in the early 1900s
added an oral history account: "There was ... great and crashing
thunder-noise everywhere ... there was also a great shaking, jumping up
and trembling of the earth beneath, and a rolling up of the great waters."

* In a written observation, a Hollywood resident compared the 6.7-magnitude
Northridge quake in 1994 to "having your house drop-kicked like a football
with the most violent and deep force you can think of, then imagine how
youclean salad in a colander; after rinsing it, you shake it back and forth,
up and down to get rid of the water. Add to that almost instant total
darkness, the most bizarre and frightening, screeching, groaning, cracking
and exploding sounds ... "

Emergency managers in Washington and Oregon are thinking about how to use
the thunderbird stories--featuring a supernatural figure who fires off
thunder and lightning--in public education campaigns on the area's
susceptibility to another deadly, tsunami-causing quake, said Ludwin, a
seismologist who has published a paper on using the Native American oral
traditions in scientific applications. In the past six months, she has
spoken to more than a dozen groups of the topic.

"Eyewitness testimony helps people believe that these events are real,"
Ludwin said. "I think stories are innately appealing to the human
imagination.... We love a good story."

The drumbeat sounds throughout California: The Big One is coming.
(According to U.S. Geological Survey scientists, there's a 60% probability
that a major quake will strike Southern California in the next 30 years).
In the town of Parkfield, which sits on the San Andreas fault in Central
California, a faux water tower is painted with the slogan: "Earthquake
Capitol of the World ... Be Here When It Happens." In downtown Los Angeles,
Epicentre restaurant, which promotes a "playful earthquake motif," offers
a "San Andreas Soup," or two kinds of bean puree separated by a jagged line
of sour cream.

And throughout California, you hear the lore: hot and dry days known as
"shake-and-bake time," or "earthquake weather"; or barking dogs who tip
off their owners to impending ground motion.

Worldwide, communities that live through a major disaster typically produce
some kind of cultural representation of the event, through means including
the exchange of myths and urban legends, said Gary R. Webb, an assistant
professor of sociology at Oklahoma State University. Since the late 1990s,
a small group of sociologists has been focusing on "the popular culture of
disaster," in areas including black humor and stories that are passed down
through the generations.

Their work is part of an emerging field of study focusing on how, for
instance, the public and politicians absorb the threat of potential
disaster. If the threat is not taken seriously, Webb said, "then we won't
feel compelled to get ready for them," and the need to strengthen building
codes or take other preparedness measures will not top the public agenda.
"Scientific and technological innovation alone will not prevent future
disasters from occurring," he said. "We have to understand the worldviews
of people who live in disaster-prone areas in order to understand how they
perceive the problem and what they believe should be done about it." Part
of the reason that myths endure is that people still can think of
earthquakes as a mysterious force and look around them to fill in the
blanks, said Kimberley Shoaf, director of research at the UCLA Center for
Public Health and Disasters. "If you see something happening, you make
that association in your brain: 'My dog barked [as a tip-off] before the last
earthquake' ... and some of that might be that science isn't in the
control of human beings. 'I can't stop the Earth from moving. I can't look inside
the Earth. I can hear dogs barking.... There's the science, and my brain
can get around that, but there has got to be something more.'"

Before--and, sometimes, after--science stepped in to explain the
bewildering force of colliding tectonic plates, people told stories to
make sense of their world.

"The great thunderbird finally carried the [whale] to its nest in the lofty
mountains, and there was the final and terrible contest fought. Here in
this death struggle, they uprooted all the trees for many miles around the
nest and also pulled the rocks down the great Hoh valley ... "

--Hoh and Quileute story cited in Ludwin's seismology research ; the story
was recorded by an ethnographer in 1934

Caltech's Thomas Heaton had not planned to cull from Native American
legends when he began investigating the seismic history of the Pacific
Northwest. "The story of discovering the giant earthquake of the winter of
1700 ... is pretty amazing," Heaton said.

Evidence of the discovery, which entailed a massive collaborative effort,
first was announced in 1995. Scientists pointed out that such a "megathrust
subduction quake"--in which a tectonic plate slides under the
continent--tends to recur every few hundred years. Since then, under the
threat of a comparable disaster along the undersea Cascadia thrust fault,
officials in the Pacific Northwest have posted new tsunami warning signs,
upgraded building codes and taken other preparedness measures.

Ludwin still is perusing the Native American stories for possible leads on
earthquakes, catastrophic landslides or tsunamis that scientists have not
yet documented. Some of the stories indicate a time frame by mentioning a
season, moon phase or tide level and give specific locations that can be
searched for paleoseismic evidence, she said.

Heaton, a professor of engineering seismology, took on the original
research in 1982 as part of a license application review for a nuclear
power plant. The applicants argued that the Pacific Northwest was not prone
to such a massive quake. But though Heaton's initial research on geologic
features of the land suggested that the Pacific coast, from British
Columbia to far Northern California, could be at risk, traditional research
sources, he found, had not recorded such a disaster. So he turned to
another possible source, referred to him by a colleague--in a 1868 book by
James Swan, a schoolteacher who wrote about his life with the Makah tribe
at Neah Bay on Washington's northwestern peninsula. Swan wrote that the
Makahs had spoken of a big flood, not as a mythological event involving
the thunderbird or other familiar figures, but as an event that was part of
their oral history. Before the flood, the Makahs told Swan that Cape
Flattery, which is on the tip of the peninsula, had been an island. "The
implication," Heaton said, "was that the ground had been uplifted as a
result of this flood event."

With the Makah story in mind, U.S. Geological Survey scientist Brian
Atwater headed to Neah Bay to analyze geologic deposits for evidence of
seismic activity. For the next 10 years, Atwater and a team of researchers
studied the deposits and eventually determined that the area's sea level
changes had been caused by earthquakes, the most recent of which had
struck in 1700. Meanwhile, another researcher in Japan had discovered that a
mysterious tsunami had hit Japan in the same year; scientists later linked
the tsunami to the earthquake cited by the Makahs.

In another piece of the puzzle, researcher Deborah Carver and her husband,
Gary, a professor emeritus of geology at Humboldt State, investigated
stories told by the Yurok people and others in far Northern California and
unearthed descriptions of an earthquake and tsunami that wiped out a
village. With the permission of Yurok elders, the Carvers explored a site
on sacred Indian land in Redwood National Park. Tsunami sand deposits
there dated back to the 1700 earthquake, Gary Carver said.

In Washington, for the past three months, officials have been meeting with
Makah representatives about how to wrap their oral histories into
preparedness campaigns, said George Crawford, earthquake program manager
for the state's Division of Emergency Management. The Makahs suggested
that their tribal storytellers could help, perhaps by relating the lessons of
their ancestors at public events.

Crawford, who loves the idea, said the Makah elders would be able to tell
the story of the historic disaster in a way that, perhaps, science cannot.
"You can tell me that we had an earthquake in 1700 and a big tsunami," he
said. "It's a different story when you get someone to say, 'My forebears
were there, and this is what happened, and this is what we tell our
children.'"

"I heard a loud boom and then my bed was thrown into the air, almost to
the ceiling...Then the sound of a million chains or trains followed by
shaking, which became more and more intense. At first it felt like it was
south-north, then west-east, then almost like a giant had the building and
shook it.... "

--Mission Hills resident's take on the Northridge quake, which left 57
dead, more than 11,000 injured and damage exceeding $40 billion

U.S. Geological Survey scientists weren't sure what to do with the
100,000-plus unofficial observations on earthquakes--from conspiracy
theorists, who insisted that Caltech was lowballing magnitude estimates,
and from the ultra-precise, written four years after the Northridge quake:
"The baby grand piano, which was sitting on a padded, carpeted concrete
slab floor, rotated on one leg, by about 41/2 degrees, in a
counter-clockwise direction (i.e., from east toward north). This was
determined by observing and measuring the final position of the piano legs
from the previous indentations which they had left in the carpet."

The firsthand reports have been filed since 1998 through a USGS Web site,
earthquake.usgs.gov, under "Report an Earthquake," as part of a system
that gives scientists and emergency response officials another tool to help
pinpoint where a quake was felt and how strongly it shook. Based on
voluntary questionnaires filed by residents after significant quakes, the
online system produces color-coded maps every few minutes, depicting the
areas hardest hit. The system, titled "Did You Feel It," also invites
brief submissions about past earthquakes. (The responses are not posted
publicly.)

Most submissions appear to be from earnest residents who are eager to "be
part of the process," said USGS seismologist David Wald. "It offers the
opportunity to write down and share your [stories] .... I find it amazing.
I didn't expect that to be a part of it. People want to give you more than
[the questionnaire data]."

Scientists, who suspected that the stories had research potential, turned
the submissions over last year to a team at Cal State Long Beach that had
been interviewing people for a study on how the public factors the threat
of an earthquake into their lives. (Earthquake preparedness information
sources include the Southern California Earthquake Center, www.scec.org.

Professor Richard Celsi and a colleague now are reviewing more than 7,000
first-person accounts of the quakes in Northridge, Landers, Big Bear in
1992 and Napa Valley's Yountville in 2000.

Their analysis could help emergency planners figure out what kind of
public education is needed and look for patterns of behavior that might need to
be addressed, Celsi said. "Maybe give them ideas on how to bridge these
questions everyone has: to scare or not to scare. How much do you say?"
(The same question is being weighed by public officials, such as Gov. Gray
Davis, in the face of heightened sensitivity to terrorist threats; last
fall, Davis was criticized for issuing vague alerts about potential
threats to four major bridges, Celsi pointed out.)

In preliminary observations of the earthquake filings, Celsi has noted that
people tend to overestimate the intensity of the shaking, compared with
scientific data and maps that indicate what the ground motion was in the
ZIP codes that the volunteers provide. Part of the reason has to do with a
"kind of California coolness" that longtime residents adopt after living
through a series of quakes without harm, he said. "We anchor from our own
experiences; we anchor to what we felt before." The ennui is fed by calls
from friends and relatives back East who check in after an earthquake
makes news. "[Residents] experienced this, and other people haven't, and that
puts them as part of a community and gives them a sense of hubris or
esprit in describing these things," Celsi said. "You don't want to sound like a
tourist--you start to take in these experiences that make you a
Californian."

But the complacency can turn into terror when a person rides out a quake
near the epicenter. "People are surprised sometimes by the sheer force
when they're close to [even] a small earthquake," Celsi said. "Their narratives
and stories will tell you, their perspectives of earthquakes have changed
forever. The coolness has left."

The stories are told, passed on, weighed in with a groaning mental file of
earthquake information. In the Mojave Desert, scientist Bob Reynolds gave
a sobering talk on the Landers quake on a Saturday in May during the $50
tour offered through the Desert Institute at Joshua Tree National Park. Then
the 11 participants took the lead:

"I was thinking that all the buildings are just going to be leveled..."
"When you looked at the San Bernardino Mountains, it looked like they were
on fire, with all that dust that came up...."

===================================================+

Date: Friday, May 24, 2002 2:56 PM
Subject: On This Day In History: May 22, 1851 - the Mariposa Indian War

 

May 22, 1851: As one of the last conflicts in the "Mariposa Indian Wars" in
California, a large group of Yosemite Indians are captured at Lake Tenaija.

From Phil Konstantin's website, http://members.tripod.com/~PHILKON/

 

=========================+++

 

From http://www.militarymuseum.org/Mariposa.html

 

California and the Indian Wars:
Mariposa Indian War, 1850-1851
by Warren A. Beck and Ynez D. Hasse

The Mariposa Indian War was the most famed Indian encounter with miners in
the southern Sierra region and also led to the discovery of Yosemite Valley.
In 1849, as gold seekers invaded the country immediately west of the present
Yosemite National Park they found one of the more densely populated Indian
areas of the state. This was a region where acorns were abundant and game
was plentiful below the winter snow line. Unfortunately, gold was also
easily found along the numerous mountain strearns. At first the Indians
(mainly Miwoks and Yokuts) welcomed the white man and the goods which could
be obtained by trade, but resentment grew as virtually every valley was
taken over by the newcomers.

To a certain extent, the story of this clash between Indian and white is the
saga of James D. Savage, one of the most remarkable of the many characters
of the Gold Rush era. A tall blue-eyed blonde who always wore red shirts to
better impress the Indians, Savage had been a Bear Flagger, a one-time
Sutter employee, and the one who was reported to have excited San
Franciscans by hauling a barrel of gold dust through a hotel lobby.
Establishing trading posts on the Fresno River and Mariposa Creek, he
reportedly traded to the Indians "an ounce of gold [for] ... five pounds of
flour, or a pound of bacon, a shirt required five ounces, and a pair of
boots or a hat brought a full pound of the precious metal." Something of a
linguist, Savage quickly learned most of the Indian tongues. He further
ingratiated himself by taking wives from several different tribes (one
authority said thirty-three!). It is hard to determine if the initial Indian
attack was directed against Savage or against whites in general.

Through his wives Savage learned of a planned Indian uprising in September,
1850, but other whites did not take the warning seriously. In December,
Savage's Trading Post was destroyed at Fresno Crossing, and three of his men
killed. A force under Sheriff James Burney clashed indcisively with the
Indians on January 11, 1 851. An appeal to the Governor for help led to the
organization of the Mariposa Battalion under "Major" James D. Savage, with
three companies led by Captain John J. Kuykendall, Captain John Boling, and
Captain William Dill. Kuykendall's company went southward to the King and
upper Kaweah while the other two companies, in three campaigns, followed
theIndians into the mountains.

The Mariposa Battalion was forced to wait before attacking the Indians
while. a federal Indian commission, composed of Redick McKee, George W.
Barbour, and Oliver M. Wozencraft, sought a peaceful solution. On March 19,
1851, the Commissioners signed a treaty at Camp Fremont with six tribes.
However, the Yosemites (Miwok) and Chowchillas (Miwok) were absent, so the
campaign against them began on March 19. The companies of Boling and Dill
moved against the Yosemites, and discovered their valley on March 27.
However, the battalion was forced to march in 3- to 5-foot snow drifts and
in rain and sleet and found few Indians. The second campaign began on April
13, against the Chowchillas, and destroyed Indian food stores, but again the
natives were able to elude their pursuers. However, the death of their chief
induced the Chowchillas to surrender and accept reservation stattus. When
the Yosemites refused to come to Camp Barbour and make peace, the third
campaign launched against them, but with no more success than the others.
However, as in all Indian wars the result was foreordained; the Yosemites
were captured at Lake Tenaija (named for their chief) on May 22, and
forced to accept reservation life.

===================================================+

Date: Thursday, May 23, 2002 8:06 PM
Subject: May 29: Gleick to Speak on Global Water Issues and Threats to California

This will doubtless be a very interesting presentation...

Global Water Crisis Threatens California, but Solutions Abound

Across the globe, scarce water resources are being threatened as never before.
Climate change, wetland destruction, pollution, and overuse all threaten
our supply of fresh water.

Locally the challenges are also serious. Global warming could seriously affect
California's water supply. Important natural resources, including the San
Francisco Bay and the Colorado River, are also at risk. The good news is there
are solutions. Improving how efficiently we use water, rethinking what we use
water for, and preparing for the future today will help us meet the
challenges of this emerging crisis.

Peter H. Gleick, President of the Pacific Institute will join Zeke Grader,
Executive Director of the Pacific Coast Federation of Fisherman's Associations,
to discuss these issues and more at a discussion moderated by Claire Hope
Cummings of KPFA-FM Berkeley. The discussion will take place at the San
Francisco Public Library on Wednesday, May 29, 2002 from 5:30 to 8:00 pm
in the Koret Auditorium. The Main Library is located at 100 Larkin Street at Grove.

NOTE: No transcription is planned for this event.

===================================================+


Date: Friday, February 15, 2002 3:01 PM
Subject: Drain It, Don't Maintain It!

[Looks like a job for... the San Francisco Bay Chapter!]

 

$4.6 billion needed to fix Hetch Hetchy

Huge bond measure proposed, with rate hikes for all users

Chuck Finnie, Susan Sward, Chronicle Staff Writers

Thursday, January 31, 2002
©2002 San Francisco Chronicle

http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?file=/chronicle/archive/2002/01/31/MN220285.DTL

 

San Francisco utility officials are proposing a $4.6 billion bond measure
for the November ballot to upgrade the aging, seismically vulnerable Hetch
Hetchy water system that serves much of the Bay Area.

Under the proposal, city voters would be asked to approve San Francisco's
biggest bond issue in history -- with the tab to be paid through a series of
increases of water rates charged to 2.4 million Hetch Hetchy customers in
San Francisco, Alameda, Santa Clara and San Mateo counties.

If approved as is, the average four-person San Francisco household would see
its monthly water bill more than triple from an average of $13.28 to $43. 93
by 2015, while suburban users' rates are estimated to go from an average of
$32 to $71. Generally, the suburban water customers' bill is considerably
more because their systems are newer and they are still paying them off.

Under San Francisco's bond proposal, suburban users would cover two-thirds
of the costs because they consume two-thirds of Hetch Hetchy's water, with
San Franciscans picking up the rest.

"Right now, San Francisco benefits from absolutely the lowest water rate in
the Bay Area," said Patricia Martel, the new general manager of the San
Francisco Public Utilities Commission, which operates the system.

"But the impact of those lower rates is we haven't been able to generate
enough revenue to make the capital investments necessary," Martel said.

After the proposed increases, San Francisco water bills would be comparable
to the median for Bay Area communities.

The Hetch Hetchy system was built after the 1913 passage of the Raker Act,
in which Congress granted San Francisco rights of way to dam the Tuolumne
River in Yosemite National Park for construction of water-collection and
power- generation facilities stretching 167 miles from the Sierra Nevada to
the Bay Area. The subsequent filling of the Hetch Hetchy Valley is regarded
by many environmentalists as one of worst crimes ever perpetrated against
nature.

Today, the system delivers water to about 700,000 people in San Francisco
and to 29 suburban wholesale customers who in turn serve about 1.7 million
people in San Mateo, Santa Clara and Alameda counties.

Sixty-eight years after Hetch Hetchy water first began to flow into San
Francisco, the system's infrastructure is in serious disrepair and
susceptible to failure in an earthquake, according to the city agency that
manages it, the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission. Its pipes and
tunnels cross three major faults, the Calaveras, Hayward and San Andreas.

"If we were to experience a seismic event of 7.0 or greater, our water
system could be knocked out for 60 days or more," said Martel.

Martel presented the proposal Tuesday during a meeting of the mayoral-
appointed commissioners who govern the San Francisco PUC.

The proposal met with a mixed response.

The San Francisco Chamber of Commerce announced that repair of the system
would be its No. 1 priority this year.

Art Jensen, general manager of Bay Area Water Users Association, which
includes all 29 suburban wholesale water customers of Hetch Hetchy, said he
is concerned that the proposal wouldn't get the job done fast enough.

For example, he said, a crucial 3.6-mile tunnel near the Hayward and
Calaveras faults that is lined with unreinforced concrete and has not been
inspected or maintained since 1966 wouldn't be revamped until August 2009.
Under a San Francisco PUC capital improvement proposal issued six months
ago, the project would have been completed two years and three months
earlier.

Two weeks ago, Assemblyman Lou Papan, D-Daly City, introduced legislation to
pressure San Francisco to move more quickly on the repair program.

The bill would set a timetable for the San Francisco PUC to complete key
projects and put in place a mechanism for the state to take control of the
upgrades if San Francisco does not comply.

PUC commissioners are expected to vote on a final form of the measure in
late March or early April after a series of community meetings.

The Board of Supervisors would have to approve the measure before it could
be placed on the ballot.

 

E-mail the writers at cfinnie@sfchronicle.com and ssward@sfchronicle.com.

©2002 San Francisco Chronicle   Page A - 13

===================================================+


Date: Tuesday, February 12, 2002 10:30 PM
Subject: Peabody's new propaganda video

[Some artful, corporate propaganda--the title is suggestive of a well-known
Hollywood movie!]

"Miracle on Black Mesa"
A video produced and distributed by:
Peabody Energy, PO Box 650, Kayenta AZ 8603

Running time: 27:30 minutes

"A generation ago, tribes, governments and companies came together in an
unprecedented plan to electrify the Southwest. The project resulted in major
coal mining operations on Navajo and Hopi lands on Arizona's Black Mesa,
where hundreds of Native Americans now work and live. Like any development
of this scope, the project has drawn detractors over 35 years. Yet those
criticisms ignore those who have seen their lives transformed for the better
in multiple ways. This video gives a voice to the people."

===================================================+


Date: Monday, January 28, 2002 8:06 AM
Subject: Peabody Coal: "Tribal Empowerment Through Energy Resource Development"

[What will they think of next?]

http://biz.yahoo.com/prnews/020122/cgtu061_1.html

 

Tuesday January 22, 4:20 pm Eastern Time

Press Release

SOURCE: Peabody Energy

Film Examines Southwest Growth and Tribal Empowerment Through Energy
Resource Development

KAYENTA, Ariz., Jan. 22 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Balancing reverence
for the earth with the need for economic development on tribal lands is
the thesis of a newly released film that explores how energy resource
development has empowered Native American tribes while fueling growth of
the American Southwest.

Set amidst a dramatic backdrop on Arizona's Black Mesa, Miracle on Black
Mesa highlights a 30-year partnership between the Navajo Nation, the
Hopi Tribe and energy companies that work together to provide a secure,
domestic electricity supply for more than 3.5 million families in
Arizona, Nevada and California.

``The change on Black Mesa has been tremendous,'' said Stanley Yazzie,
Acting Director for the Navajo Nation Community Development Department
and Vice President of the Shonto Chapter, who is featured in the film.
``The mining operation has created a lot of change, high employment and
economic opportunities for a lot of people ... and largely for the
Navajo Nation, because coal resources result in revenue.''

Miracle on Black Mesa gives a voice to the people who live and work on
Black Mesa. It features a dozen interviews with residents, mine workers
and tribal officials.

The film looks at the region's history and early mining activities. It
investigates contemporary and controversial issues associated with
resource development including land reclamation, water use and
exploration of new water supplies for mining and municipal needs.

Produced by Steven Schwartz Communications of New York City and
sponsored by Peabody Energy (NYSE: BTU - news), the 30-minute film is
available in VHS and Beta format. The film can be ordered by forwarding
a name, mailing address and format requirements to
publicrelations@peabodyenergy.com .

Coal mining on Black Mesa provides a $2 million weekly economic
injection into tribal communities or nearly $2 billion since mining
began. The activities also provide 700 jobs on reservation lands where
unemployment hovers above 50 percent.

SOURCE: Peabody Energy

===================================================+


Date: Tuesday, January 22, 2002 4:25 PM
Subject: DenverPost: 'Use it or lose it' rule challenged

 

Bill would change water laws

'Use it or lose it' rule challenged

By Theo Stein
Denver Post Environment Writer

 

Wednesday, January 09, 2002 - Colorado's arcane water laws aren't only tough
to understand, they're tough on the environment, conservation groups say.

So this year, a state senator is proposing legislation that would let
irrigators and other water users leave some water in streams and rivers
without suffering a penalty.

Under the current system, water rights holders must use their alloted water
- even if that means they have to waste it - or risk losing it.

But the state's top natural resource official said an existing water panel,
appointed by the governor, should be the only entity deciding how much water
is left in streams and how much is available for agriculture and
development.

The bill, proposed by state Sen. Ken Gordon, D-Denver, would allow property
owners to leave water in streams for fishing or rafting. It would also let
conservation groups purchase water rights to protect the health of riparian
ecosystems, similar to the way some groups have restored rangeland by buying
grazing allotments elsewhere in the West.

Gordon said his bill reflects a growing awareness that healthy stream flows
can provide economic benefits from fishing, rafting and other
recreation-based businesses.

"Colorado historically developed as a resource extraction area," he said.
"People looked at water as something that had to be wrestled out of a stream
and put on the land. The whole premise was it was wasted if it ran downhill.

"Well, times have changed."

Greg Walcher, the director of Colorado's Department of Natural Resources,
said the bill would be a dangerous and unnecessary change in state water
law. Since 1973, he said, the Colorado Water Conservation Board has
protected instream flows on 8,000 miles of rivers and several hundred lakes.

"Drying up farmland to protect water in streams is a huge public policy
mistake," said Walcher.

Supporters of the bill say it offers a creative, market-driven reform that
would not only boost recreation economies but could also potentially ward
off endangered-species crises like that endured by Oregon farmers in the
Klamath Basin last year who lost their irrigation water in favor of
endangered fish.

The cost of purchasing senior rights would limit the amount of water-banking
conservation groups could do.

"This would be an interesting supplement to the role performed by the water
conservation board," said Dan Leuke, a water attorney with Environmental
Defense of Boulder.

"When you talk about the need to use Colorado water wisely, "save it and
sell it' sounds a lot smarter than "use it or lose it,' " said Dave Nickum,
state director of Trout Unlimited.

Any proposed conversion would by law not be allowed to violate the various
compacts between Colorado and other states. Nor could it reduce the amount
of water available to downstream or junior-rights holders.

The bill adopts one of the recommendations in "A Dry Legacy," a report
issued by Trout Unlimited detailing the harmful effects of the state's
archaic water laws.

"Certainly, it's not going to solve all of Colorado's water problems, but it
would be an incredibly powerful new tool in the toolbox," said Nickum.

The existing program run by the Colorado Water Conservation Board is based
on "minimum flows." But Gordon's bill would permit larger flows that would
provide a greater benefit to both the environment and downstream users.

 

All contents Copyright 2001 The Denver Post

===================================================+


Date: Tuesday, January 22, 2002 4:24 PM
Subject: GJDS: Activists oppose Park Service water claims (for Black Canyon of the Gunnison NP)

Grand Junction

01.11.02

Activists oppose Park Service water claims

By AARON PORTER
The Daily Sentinel

 

 DELTA - The controversial plan to mimic natural river flows in the Black
Canyon met resistance Thursday from a Western Slope community action group.

 A Club 20 water subcommittee resolution denounced any alterations to
Aspinall Unit dam operations that conflict with current commitments. The
series of federally managed reservoirs east of Montrose are under pressure
by a National Park Service demand for all unclaimed water flowing through
the Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park.

 The Park Service claim on water from Crystal, Morrow Point and Blue Mesa
reservoirs could impact the entire Gunnison River basin, said Chris Treese,
Club 20 water subcommittee member and Colorado River Water Conservation
District spokesman.

 "Everybody who has an interest in water in the Gunnison (River) basin is at
risk simply because of the uncertainty," he said.

 The resolution is pending ratification by the Club 20 board of directors in
March.

 The Aspinall Unit stems the cascading torrent that once cut through the
Black Canyon.

 Now trees and vegetation encroach onto sediment left by more sedate flows
along the 12-mile stretch of the Gunnison River, Park Service officials have
said. Spring runoff that washed away sediment, rocks and trees is now
absorbed by the dams.

 The Park Service is seeking enough water to scour the green coating from
the canyon floor.

 It was awarded a water right in 1978, giving the then-national monument a
priority date of 1933. Priority dates determine the order in which water
users access their water.

 But the volume of water to which the Park Service was entitled was never
established. It was ordered to file a claim later for a specific quantity of
water.

 The claim was filed two days before President Bill Clinton left office.

 In January 2001, the Park Service demanded all unappropriated water flowing
through the Black Canyon as of March 2, 1933.

 It claimed a minimum flow of 300 cubic feet per second and a peak flood
that varied based on winter snowfall, Treese said. It also demanded an
80-day "shoulder flow" to submerge the banks.

 The bank submersion would kill unnatural bank vegetation, which would be
removed during the one-day flushing flood every year.

 Water users who met with Park Service officials expected it to file for a
quantity of water equal to the Aspinall Unit's 1957 water right, Treese
said.

 "The federal government really did make an aggressive filing, more so than
it had earlier indicated," Treese said.

 The filing sparked 383 formal objections in Water Court Division 4, the
most opposition filed against any water claim in Colorado history, Treese
said.

 The Park Service claim directly affects the operations of the Aspinall
Unit, thus extending to the entire Gunnison River basin.

 "There is a broad Western Slope water-use issue that is affected by changes
in the Aspinall Unit," Treese said.

 The Aspinall Unit holds vital irrigation water and regulates river flows
for endangered fish recovery. It is also a supplemental source of water for
wildlife projects aimed at preventing federal endangered species
restrictions in Dolores and Dallas creeks.

 It has the only hydroelectric system in the Western Area Power
Administration's area that can vary power generation to meet consumer demand
while maintaining a steady flow into the Gunnison River, Treese said.

 The Aspinall Unit is also a vital part of the upper Colorado River storage
battery, which consists of four other major reservoirs. The storage battery
is a buffer against demands for water downstream from Lake Powell in
Arizona.

 The Club 20 water subcommittee's proposed resolution Thursday opposes any
changes that conflict with current Aspinall Unit commitments.

 The resolution demanded that future operations "will be limited by and
subject to existing commitments." It also demanded protection for historic
and existing water uses in the Gunnison River basin, and that water
available for marketing should be limited by existing Aspinall Unit
commitments.

===================================================+


Date: Tuesday, January 22, 2002 4:20 PM
Subject: Lake Powell: Jewel of the Colorado

LAKE POWELL
Jewel of the Colorado

______________

An iridescent jewel
Aglow
Upon a new-born lake.

 

Past these towering monuments, past these mounded billows of orange
sandstone, past these oak-set glens, past these fern-decked alcoves, past
these mural curves, we glide hour after hour, stopping now and then as our
attention is arrested by some new wonder.

- JOHN WESLEY POWELL
Colorado River explorer, 1869

 

Administered as a national recreation area by the National Park Service, so
as to provide the American public maximum access and enjoyment.

US DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR
Stewart L. Udall, Secretary

BUREAU OF RECLAMATION
Floyd E. Dominy, Commissioner

 

 

Dear God, did you cast down
Two hundred miles of canyon
And mark: "For poets only"?
Multitudes hunger
For a lake in the sun.

- GORDON MICHELLE, 1952

______________

 

FOREWORD

Once in a blue moon we come upon almost unbelievable beauty. Such was my
reaction at my first sight of Lake Powell and its setting of incomparable
grandeur. Lake Powell holds working water, but it also is a new and major
national recreation area. The blue waters and the sculptured shore hold
something for all--the fun and excitement of fishing, boating, and water
sports, or healing solitude in the midst of natural beauty.

President and Mrs. John on have challenged us with an exciting new concept
of conservation: Creation of new beauty to amplify the beauty which is our
heritage as well as creation of more places for outdoor recreation. In this
magnificent lake we have made such accomplishments. Welcome to Lake Powell.

- STEWART L. UDALL, Secretary
U.S. Department of the Interior

______________

[photo]

High on the western slopes of the Continental Divide--in Rocky Mountain
National Park--Willow Creek, headwaters of the Colorado River, begins its
1,400-mile journey to the sea.

 

THE RIVER

The mighty Colorado River is as essential to a great seven-State area in the
West as the Great Lakes are to the industrial heartland of America. Without
it, much of that Western land as we know it today would be desolate and
unsettled--a barren waste unfit for habitation.

The Colorado is an ancient river. Its bedrock granite dates back to the
Archean Age--oldest in known geological time.

The river springs to life high on the western slopes of the Rocky Mountains'
Continental Divide in northern Colorado--then begins its 1,400-mile journey
to the Gulf of California and the Pacific Ocean. Its tributaries extend into
seven Western States. It drains one-twelfth the area of the continental
United States.

Through the eons, as the great plateaus of Utah rose from the sea, this
great land carver gouged the mesa rocks to gorge and chasm along its path.
It dug great canyons, their rims towering thousands of feet above the
river's bed.

Fifteen thousand years ago, the Colorado coursed through a land generously
blessed with rainfall and green with vegetation. Eleven thousand years ago,
a great cycle of aridity began. This reached its height 4,000 years before
Christ. Ancient Indian civilization died for lack of understanding how to
use the river's water to alleviate great drought. In that age, the West
became as we see it today.

Not long after Columbus discovered the New World, Spanish conquistadors
discovered the lower Colorado. They gave the silt-laden river its
name--Colorado--Spanish for red.

In 1869, John Wesley Powell was the first man to navigate 1,000 miles of the
Colorado River and live to tell the tale.

Later, it became "Big Red" to the settlers--a wild, unbridled river that was
both blessing and curse. It gave them that breath of Western
life--water--but its disastrous floods ravaged and destroyed. And its annual
low-flow cycle discouraged attempts to fit the river into a plan of
permanent economic development.

Not until the 20th century did man begin to tame the outlaw river--to store
its precious water and regulate its flow.

______________

 

I was brick-red, mud-laden:
Big Red, the River Colorado;
Trickle or flood at Nature's whim
Since time began.

To the sea my waters wasted
While the lands cried out for moisture.
now man controls me
Stores me, regulates my flow.

The wild red outlaw river
Tamed.
Now flowing clean and blue
Unmaimed.

______________

[map]

The four-State Colorado River Storage Project--a comprehensive river-basin
development.

 

THE PLAN

In the early part of this century in the arid West, a water-resources
planning engineer would pick a likely spot on a river for a dam. He would
consider all possible benefits--as far as his scope of vision extended. Then
the dam would be built. There were, of course, direct benefits--but they
were governed by the limited technology and vision of the day.

By the 1920's, most of the "easy" ones--the simple projects--had been built.
Realization grew that the taming of the Colorado must begin--that its waters
must be made subject to the need and will of man.

And so a new era for the West began. First fruit was famed Hoover Dam--the
first major river plug in the world, and still the highest dam in this
hemisphere. Behind it is Lake Mead--one of the biggest manmade lakes in the
world.

A classic example of this new vision is the Colorado River Stoage Project.
The bold and swwping planning for it was not concerned with one dam in one
place--it was concerned with the upper half of an entire river basin
encompassing four Western States. Not onlyh was it concerned with the main
river--the Colorado--and its lower basin, but its many tributaries as well.

The use plan for the water was not cast in the singular--it was labeled
multipurpose: irrigation, municopal and industrial, power generation, flood
control, fish and wildlife--plus outdoor recreation for all the Nation's
people.

There are four main water-=storage and river-regulating units: Flaming
Gorge, Curecanti, Navajo, and Glen Canyon. And 11 smaller participating
projects are integrated to support the broad and comprehensive plan.

Some idea of the scope of this giant project may be had from two facts: When
completed--and it is nearly complete--the system will store 35 million
acre-feet of water and be able to generate 1.3 million kilowatts of electric
power.

In direct ways, this powerhouse of western economic development will
beneficially affect every person in most of the West. In indirect ways, it
will be of benefit to every person in the United States.

And it will be no burden on the American taxpayer. More than 90 percent of
construction costs for the entire project will be paid for by water and
power sales--and be returned to the United States Treasury.

As the great reservoirs fill with the surplus of highwater years, users of
Colorado River water will be freed from disruptive cycles of drought. The
reservoirs will hold sufficient water for 4 years of committed
needs--regardless of inflow.

When the system is complete, damaging floods--large or small--will be
impossible. Big Red, the outlaw river, will finally be tamed.

Water flowing in the Colorado will be blue and clean, and stay that way.
Each reservoir has the designed-in capacity to hold many hundreds of years'
silt accumulation, without affecting efficiency of operation.

When the Colorado River Storage Project is fully integrated with present
plans for the lower basin of the river, the long-cherished dream of full
development and use will have come true.

______________

 

[photo]

GLEN CANYON DAM RISING
Man and Nature in Peaceful Harmony.

______________

[photo]

GLEN CANYON DAM -- Complete and Storing Blue Water.

 

THE DAM

Man has flung down a giant barrier directly in the path of the turbulent
Colorado in Arizona. It has tamed the wild river--made it a servant to man's
will.

Big Red has lost meaning as a name for the Colorado. The colossus called
Glen Canyon is now storing and releasing blue water.

Glen Canyon Dam rises over 500 feet from the canyon floor. Its graceful bulk
holds 5 million cubic yards of concrete. In the power house at its toe,
475-ton generators spin quietly as they pour energy by the billions of watts
into cross-country transmission lines. Behind it, 186-mile-long Lake Powell
is filling.

In 1964, Glen Canyon Dam was winner in the national competition for the
Outstanding Civil Engineering Achievement Award. This annual award is given
by the American Society of Civil Engineers to--

"that engineering project that demonstrated the
greatest engineering skills and represents the
greatest contribution to... mankind."

Built of rock and cement and sweat and skill, Glen Canyon Dam stands as a
monument to the talent of its builders--and to reaffirmation of the
pioneering spirit that is America.

The manmade rock of the dam has become as one with the living rock of the
canyon.

It will endure as long as time endures.

______________

 

Along Lake Powell's shores.

Forbidding Canyon.

 

LAKE POWELL

To have a deep blue lake
Where no lake was before
Seems to bring man
A little closer to God.

______________

[map]

GLEN CANYON RECREATION SITES

Like a string of pearls along Lake Powell's shores will be 10 modern
recreation areas. Their names read as on a page from some colorful history
of the Old West: Wahweap, Lee's Ferry, Warm Creek, Rainbow Bridge,
Hole-in-the-Rock, Oil Seep Bar, Hall's Crossing, Bullfrog Basin, Castle
Butte, and Hite Crossing.

 

 

THE LAKE

A personal report the Commission of the Bureau of Reclamation

Sired by the muddy Colroado in magnificent canyon counrty, a great blue lake
has been born in the West.

It is called Lake Powell. When full, it will be 186 miles long. Its
shoreline will total 1,860 miles. it formed behind Glen Canyon Dam, which is
at the town of Page, Ariz. The lake begins in the northenr part of that
State. Most of it is in Utah.

Lake Powell holds working water--water for many purposes. And one of those
purposes is to provide the people o fthis country with the finest scenic and
recreational area in the Nation.

At intervals along shores of astonishing beauty willbe 10 recreation centers
developed by the National Park Service. Their names have a tang of the Old
West: Wahweap, Lee's Ferry, Warm Creek, Rainbow Bridge, Hole-in-the-Rock,
Oil Seep Bar, Hall's Crossing, Bullfrog Basin, Castle Butte, and Hite
Crossing.

Five of these will have marinas, four will have airstrips, seven will have
complete lodging accommodations, all will have boat docks, supplies, camping
sites, and picnic grounds. Work is underway on over half of these sites.
Wahweap--nearest to Glen Canyon Dam--is virtually complete.

All you need is a boat--or there are excursion boats for hire if you prefer.
Where you go and what you do in this water wonderland ids for your personal
choice. You are rich with opportunity before you begin.

I'd like to invite you to visit Lake Powell and especially to see that
natural marvel--Rainbow Bridge. Before Lake Powell, Rainbow Bridge National
Monument could be visited only by the rugged few who "packed" in. Now all of
you can see it--easily. Your boat will moor to floating docks at the
entrance to Rainbow Bridge Canyon. Then you take a walk on a trail along the
canyon's side. You'll find the bridge undamaged by Lake Powell's waters--for
even when the lake is at maximum elevation its waters c an never reach the
ledge upon which the bridge rests. And you can marvel at its arched and
graceful beauty in the peace and quiet of its natural setting.

How can I describe the sculpture and colorad along Lake Powell's shores?
Every time I go back, I search again for a new set of words. And they always
seem inadequate.

Over eons of time, wind and rain have carved the sandstone in to shapes to
please ten thousand eyes. The graceful, the dramatic, the grand, the
fantastic. Evolution into convolution and involution. Sharp edges, round
edges, blunt edges, soaring edges. Spires, cliffs, and castles in the sky.

Colorado like a symphony of Nature's music. Bright orange, brick red, ocher,
pink, deep brown, vivid purple, granite black, mustard yellow--and a soft,
pale green so delicate no artist could ever capture it with paint.

______________

 

If I sound partisan toward Lake Powell, you are correct. I am proud of this
aquatic wonder and want to share it with you.

Do you like to fish? Lake Powell has been stocked with millions of trout and
bass. They'll be good fighting size this summer and good eating, too.

Feel like exploring? Hundreds of side canyons--where few ever trod before
the lake formed--are yours. They have names like Cathedral and Twilight--the
list is long many are still nameless.

 

Fun sports? Yes. This is sun country. Water skiing, swimming, scuba
diving--all in clean, blue water that looks like deep blue sky.

And if you feel lazy and just want to soak up sun and beauty, this is your
place. Don't hike--amble. Lie in the sun. Putter along the shore. You'll
never run out of places and space.

If you're tired in mind and soul, in need of restful serenity, I don't know
a better place. If you want to be alone, you can be alone. You just can't
crowd Lake Powell's 1,860 miles of shoreline--equal in length to our Pacific
shoreline from Tia Juana, Mexico, to the Olympic shores of Washington State.

For that grand old custom of seeing American first, where could be better?
The air is dry and bracing, the sun is warm, and ther's a prizewinning scene
round every bend.

And best of all for some, a campfire with old friends on Powell's shores at
dusk. After pan-fried trout, which never taste the same in restaurants.

You have a front-row seat in an amphitheater of infinity. The bright blue
sky deepens slowly to a velvet purple and the stars are
brilliant--glittering in that vast immensity above. Orange sandstone cliffs
dfade to dusky red--then to blackest black. The fire burns low--reflected in
the placid lake. There is peace. And a oneness with the world and God.

I know. I was there.

- FLOYD E. DOMINY
Commissioner, Bureau of Reclamation.

 

There are millions in cities
Who have never seen
Red sandstone soaring skyward
Like cathedral spires.

______________

 

Wahweap Recreation Area Marina.

 

A sweet breeze
Across deep water
The campfire's glow
Day's end
Peace.

______________

 

RAINBOW BRIDGE--a national monument. This beautiful natural marvel was once
accessible only to the rugged few who "packed" in . Because of Lake Powell,
there is now easy access by boat for the millions.

 

I sing a song for common man
Desk-numbed and city-trapped;

Now free--now hearing clearly
Great chords of healing solitude.

 

There are canyons
By the hundreds
Waiting for you to explore.
Come.

Sculptured beauty
Shaped by nature.
To her
A million years
But the flick of a page
In the endless book of time.

 

THE FUTURE

What do you do with a great river which is the lifeline for the arid half of
a country?

First, you treasure, regulate, and husband what it holds. Then you plan the
future for that water as carefully as King Midas counted his gold.

The tremendous basin of the Colorado River is divided into an Upper Basin
and Lower Basin. The four-State Upper basin contains the Colorado River
storage Project. The Lower Basin holds famed Hoover Dam. and Lake
Mead--serving California, Arizona, and Nevada. It also holds other
significant water projects, but needs further development to utilize its
allotted share of Colorado River water. This additional development is
essential to its future.

Why does the Lower Basin need more water now? Because the population
explosion in the Lower basin States during the past 15 years has been
phenomenal. The population has doubled and doubled again--and this growth
rate is expected to continue.

This is why further water development is needed now. To supply the means to
bring more water to more people.. Not for convenience, but out of necessity.

Construction of these new water supply and delivery works will be expensive.
But basic to Reclamation's policy--contrary to many other Federal
programs--is payback to the United States Treasury for construction costs.

Sale of water alone cannot do it. But sale of power--generated by that
water--is the traditional congressionally endorsed means of achieving
balance.

And that is the "why" for consideration of Bridge Canyon Dam and consruction
of Marble Canyon Dam--as proposed to the Congress.

These dams are cash registers. They will ring up sales of electric power
produced by Colorado River water.

Is hydroelectric power obsolete? Can nuclear or coal-fired energy spin the
generators more cheaply? These questions represent confused concepts.
Hydropower is unique in that it is the only power system which can be
started and stopped at the flick of a switch. It can supply power instantly
on demand. This is "peaking" power--champing at the bit and ready for use at
those times of day when the demand is heavy. Integration of Federal
hydropower and steam-generation plants of others has been the practical
solution for many years. It will continue to be.

______________

 

It has been charged that "these new dams would 'flood out' the river's
canyon in Grand Canyon National Park." Any such charge has no basis in
truth. First, only one of these structures--Bridge Canyon Dam--will impinge
in any way on Grand Canyon National Park. The other structure--Marble Canyon
Dam--would be many miles beyond the upstream boundary of the park. Second,
the lake formed by Bridge Canyon Dam would back only 13 miles along the
Colorado where the river is the park boundary. At the boundary, the canyon
is 2,100 feet deep. The lake water would add only 90 feet to the present
river level. At 13 miles upstream along the boundary, the added water depth
would be zero. The remaining 92 river-miles within Grand Canyon National
Park would remain untouched.

A blue lake above Bridge Canyon Dam, deep within the inner gorge, would make
this spectacular canyon easy of access by boat for millions. Easy of access
for the millions of Americans who love to boat, fish, and swim, and water
ski--or just laze in the sun--in God's country. For the millions of
Americans who would see--for the first time--a new part of their heritage of
natural beauty.

There is a natural order in our universe. God created both Man and Nature.
And Man serves God. But Nature serves Man.

Man cannot improve upon Nature. But--as he has since before dawn of
history--Man must continue to adapt Nature to his needs. Still, that process
of adapting must preserve--in balance--the whole natural heritage that is
his.

The Colorado River and its basin are a great and abundant treasure house of
natural resources and natural wonders.

Let us husband the one wisely. Let us enjoy the other fully.

 

U.S. GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE · WASHINGTON: 1965

 

For sale by the Superintendent of Documents, U.S. Government Printing
Office, Washington, D.C., 20402, or the Chief Engineer, Bureau of
Reclamation, Attention 841, Denver Federal Center, Denver, Colo., 80225.
Price 75 cents.

O-768-050

______________

 

Credits--Photographs on front, inside front, and back covers and pages 10,
11 , 24 (right), 25, and 26, Commissioner of Reclamation Floyd E. Dominy;
pages 2, 3, 12-13, 17, 18 (top), 19 (top), 20-21, and 22 (top), Joseph
Muench; pages 6-7, 18 (bottom), and 23, Stan Rasmussen; pages 8 and 24
(left), W.L. Rusho; and page 19 (bottom), Jean Duffy.

 

NOTE FOR PHOTOGRAPHERS. Both Floyd Dominy, nonprofessional, and Joseph
Muench, professional, say this about photography at the lake:

Lake Powell gave the most exciting camera experience of a lifetime. The
place is alive with color--with clear, dry air and a maximum of sunlight.
There is great variety for your choice: sweeping panoramas of utmost
grandeur, shifting moods of light and water, intimate detail of sculpted
rock and reflection, striking and colorful settings for pictures of your
family and friends.

Truly, Lake Powell is a photographer's paradise.

===================================================+


Date: Tuesday, January 22, 2002 4:27 PM
Subject: Lk Powell Chron: Committee seeks to remove Page mayor

 

Committee seeks to remove mayor

Jan 10 2002

By Sararesa Begay 
Lake Powell Chronicle

 

Two former Page city council members have joined others in forming a
committee seeking to remove the mayor from office.

Tim McDaniels and Val Gleave serve as the committee chairman and treasurer,
respectively, for the Committee to Recall J. Dean Slavens.

The committee members filed their statement of organization with the city
shortly before Christmas, and started collecting signatures to initiate the
recall process.

McDaniels declined comment and Gleave could not be reached by press time,
but the committee submitted a statement with the city that cited their
problems with the mayor.

"Since his election, Dean Slavens has been involved in various political
battles pitting the Mayor as a pseudo-CEO against the city staff,
contractors and the community under the pretense of acting on behalf of the
council," the statement reads.

Slavens said he does not know why the committee seeks his recall, and noted
he only spoke to one of its members, Gleave, in a general discussion of
issues.

"I don't know why (McDaniels) wants to recall me," Slavens said. "We've had
an election and I was elected. Normally, you'd give a fellow a time frame to
prove himself."

Slavens said he thinks the attempt at a recall has to do with his
involvement in the termination of city attorney Charles Stoddard. He said he
believes McDaniels and Stoddard are friends.

In July, Slavens terminated Stoddard's contract, citing a conflict of
interest because he drafted and signed his own employment contract. Slavens
backed his decision with an opinion issued by Maricopa County Attorney
Richard Romley.

In order to initiate the recall process, the committee has to collect 416
signatures of registered voters - 25 percent of the number of votes cast
during the last election - as prescribed by state statute.

The committee members had until 5 p.m. Jan. 7 to collect the signatures to
get the recall on the May ballot.

Whether they made the deadline could not be confirmed by press time.

The deadline for submitting the signed petitions for the September election
is April 18. Anyone wanting to run against the mayor during the recall must
submit their application at least 60 days before the day of the election.
Gifford said after the petitions are returned to her office, she submits
them to Coconino County. The county then verifies those who signed are
registered voters.

The committee's recall petitions have been available at Beans Gourmet Coffee
House, Gleave Insurance Agency, Fred's Liquors and Lake Powell Marine.

Slavens won the Page mayoral election March 13 with a vote of 541 votes.
Mayoral candidate Bob Bowling received 479 votes.

Slavens took office in late May, a little more than seven months ago.
Statute does not allow a recall petition to be filed until the elected
official has served at least six months.

The new mayor has received criticism from council members and citizens for
acting without a consensus when he terminated Stoddard.

Slavens recently attempted to terminate city manager Don Klepper's contract.
He said Klepper has not properly communicated with council his intentions or
decisions.

Council voted 5-2 to keep Klepper on the payroll during a special meeting
Dec. 19.

The city of Page has experienced its share of mayoral unrest. In February
2000, Mayor James Sippel resigned from office.

City council members appointed Bob Bowling to finish the term.

 

©Lake Powell Chronicle 2002

===================================================+


Date: Tuesday, January 22, 2002 4:24 PM
Subject: News: Sediment problems are the "beginning of the end" for Lake Powell Reservoir

L I V I N G R I V E R S
-- N E W S R E L E A S E --

POB 466 - Moab, UT 84532 - 435-259-1063/fax 259-7612
POB 1589 - Scottsdale, AZ 85252 - 480-990-7839/fax 990-2662
www.livingrivers.net
___________________________________________________________

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE - MONDAY, JANUARY 14, 2002

CONTACT: John Weisheit, 435-260-2590 (cell)
Owen Lammers, 435-259-1063

 

 

"Beginning of the end for Lake Powell"

 

Park Service, BuRec fail to address Lake Powell's growing sediment problems;
Rafting industry and environmentalists issue urgent call for action

World-famous Cataract Canyon and San Juan River trips threatened; Hite
Marina will be rendered useless

 

MOAB, UTAH (Jan. 14) -- It's official: Lake Powell Reservoir is filling with
sediment. And the government had better start dealing with it.

So says a letter sent today by LIVING RIVERS and eight other river
protection and recreation organizations, to the National Park Service (NPS),
calling for federal action to address the growing problem of river mud that
is interfering with boating activities in the upper reaches of the nation's
second-largest artificial lake. The Utah Guides & Outfitters Association, a
recreational industry trade group, made the same points in a concurring
letter.

"This is the beginning of the end for Lake Powell," said John Weisheit,
LIVING RIVERS conservation director and a professional river guide with 17
years experience. "People talk about Lake Powell filling with silt sometime
in the future, but the future is now."

Of immediate concern is the slimy muck that threatens the environment and
the Colorado Plateau's multimillion-dollar recreational river rafting
industry. Similar impacts are being felt today in the Grand Canyon far
downstream, where in summer 2001 the Pearce's Ferry take-out was closed
indefinitely due to thick layers of oozing sediment clogging the upper reach
of Lake Mead Reservoir.

The groups' letters were sent in response to a NPS redevelopment proposal
for Hite Marina, a commercial concession within Glen Canyon National
Recreation Area (GCNRA), located in San Juan County, Utah. The coalition of
groups and businesses is asking for the marina project to be put on hold
pending a study of sediment-caused access problems, not only for boaters on
the reservoir but also for rafters using the Colorado River's Cataract
Canyon and the lower canyons of the San Juan River. Whitewater trips through
both canyons terminate on Lake Powell Reservoir.

This is the first serious indication of problems that will inevitably worsen
in the coming years. Prudent management compels the Park Service to
undertake a comprehensive sediment study prior to investing more public
funds on infrastructure that sediment deposition will ultimately render
useless. The agency has a legal duty to prevent impairment of park resources
and provide high-quality recreational opportunities, yet the Park Service
emphasizes reservoir-based, flat water recreation to the detriment of
maintaining a world-renowned rafting experience. An industry that not only
predates the reservoir's existence but also employs hundreds of people is
dependent on maintaining an open channel from the mouth of Cataract to the
take-out at Hite Marina, and from the lower San Juan to Clay Hills Crossing
on the reservoir's San Juan arm.

"People have been using these rivers for recreation since the 1920s," said
Bob Jones, owner of Tag-A-Long Expeditions, the oldest river outfitting
company in Moab. Jones is a member of Utah Guides & Outfitters Association.
"Something has to be done about this access problem at Clay Hills, and now I
am very worried that my business will be impacted by the problems I see
coming for Hite Marina. Our customers come from all over the world, and I
sure would hate to disappoint them."

LIVING RIVERS' letter warns that access problems already exist at Clay Hills
Crossing, and that access to Hite Marina could begin to be curtailed by
sediment in as little as two years. Colorado River sediments are quickly
filling the bay at Hite and may soon inhibit access to the marina, the
terminus for all Cataract Canyon trips.

"We're losing two of the country's most spectacular whitewater boating
experiences," stated Annie Payne, President of Colorado Plateau River
Guides. "The Park Service and Bureau of Reclamation have ignored the
situation in the past, but it won't go away; it just gets worse each passing
year."

The Park Service, in its 1979 General Management Plan for GCNRA, estimated
that Hite Marina would have to be abandoned "within thirty years" because of
sediment accumulation. The silt arrived ahead of schedule. But despite this
predicted event, the agency is moving forward with plans to redevelop the
existing marina at its current site.

Sedimentation occurs in all reservoirs, but the problem at Powell is
particularly acute, say the groups. The extraordinarily high silt loads
carried by the San Juan and Colorado Rivers are the result of the region's
unique geology. Geologists consider the soils to be among the fastest
eroding in the world. Flash floods, common occurrences during the desert's
hot summers, carry huge quantities of silt and debris into surging streams.
When these sediment-laden waters reach the still waters of Lake Powell
Reservoir, the particles settle out and form unsightly mudflats that at
lower water levels can make boat travel impossible.

Today's letter requests the Park Service to work with the Bureau of
Reclamation to develop the requested plan and an environmental impact
statement. Both agencies have responsibility for managing public resources
and facilities safely and economically, and for encouraging public
participation in addressing any problems. Yet they have failed to inform the
public of the inevitable--and worsening--conflicts and damage that will
occur.

According to a recent NPS-sponsored study, the sediment deposit is quickly
advancing toward Hite, and will make the launch ramp there inaccessible
within two years whenever the reservoir surface level falls to 3630 feet
above sea level. In 1992, the reservoir dropped to about 3610 feet above sea
level. The current level is 3660 feet above sea level.

Sediment at Clay Hills Crossing is already impacting recreational usage.
Boaters must often lift and carry their boats and equipment across
quicksand-like mud flats to the take-out, creating unsafe conditions for
recreationists.

"There's nothing much they can do but attempt to manage this problem in the
near term, but in the long term, decommissioning Glen Canyon Dam is
inevitable," said Weisheit.

LIVING RIVERS' letter is available online at:
http://www.livingrivers.net/media/article.cfm?NewsID=220

 

# # #

On the Net:

LIVING RIVERS
http://www.livingrivers.net/

Colorado Outward Bound School
http://www.cobs.org/
Colorado Plateau River Guides
Four Corners School of Outdoor Education
http://www.fourcornersschool.org/
Glen Canyon Institute
http://www.glencanyon.org/
Grand Canyon Private Boaters Association
http://www.gcpba.org/
Sierra Club
http://utah.sierraclub.org/glencanyon/
Utah Guides and Outfitters Association
http://www.utahguidesandoutfitter.com/
Utah Rivers Council
http://www.utahrivers.org/
Utah Whitewater Club
http://www.utahwhitewaterclub.org/

 

NOTE: Many Interior Department websites are temporarily offline as a result
of a court order. The following links may become functional at any time.

National Park Service
GCNRA Planning Page
http://www.nps.gov/glca/plan.htm
Bureau of Reclamation
Upper Colorado Region
http://www.uc.usbr.gov/

===================================================+


Date: Tuesday, January 22, 2002 7:06 PM
Subject: Protesters vow to disrupt Games; Top Olympic cop says he's not overly worried

Protesters vow to disrupt Games

Top Olympic cop says he's not overly worried

By Derek Jensen and Brady Snyder
Deseret News staff writers

 

      Protesters have threatened to interfere with the opening ceremonies of
Salt Lake's 2002 Winter Games and to derail Olympics-time traffic, Utah's
top Olympic cop says.

Robert Flowers      Utah Olympic Public Safety Commander Robert Flowers said
potential Olympic protesters are becoming more vocal and sending more
letters to officials.

      "Almost on a daily basis we get threatening letters or requests where
hundreds or maybe even thousands are coming to protest things such as the
homeless," Flowers said. "We have the animal rights activists that seem to
be very visible right now making threats about the rodeo.

      "I don't want to get into the particulars of the letters," he said.
"But you get things like, 'We're going to disrupt the opening ceremonies' or
'We're going to disrupt the traffic flow.' "

      While the letters are coming with more frequency, Flowers said they
don't "cause us great concern."

      To date, groups of homeless people, anti-rodeo activists, abortion
opponents, Olympic-expenditure foes and followers of a spiritual sect banned
in China have applied for protest permits or have suggested they would be
part of the protesting scene.

      Flowers didn't say which groups were making threats.

      "The protest issue came to light about a year ago," Flowers said.
"Then it died down, and then it's reared its head again.

      "We can support the protests," Flowers added. "We have to provide
protest zones; that's what our country's founded upon. What I'm concerned
about though is that they (might) not honor their agreements, and we have
prepared a response for that. We will react swiftly, but we will react
appropriately also."

      Flowers said it's still hard to say how many protesters will descend
on Utah for the Games.

      Salt Lake City is asking that protesters stay inside about a
half-dozen "protest zones" strategically placed downtown and near
Rice-Eccles Stadium, home to opening and closing ceremonies.

      However, many groups have complained about the protest zones, which
they argue are either too small or not close enough to their desired
targets.

      On Friday Salt Lake City officials were prepared to grant the Utah
Animal Rights Coalition, which is protesting a rodeo, and the Citizen
Activist Network, which is protesting the Games' commercialism, permits to
protest outside the zones in areas not governed by the city's large-scale
special events ordinance.

      Those permit applications were initially denied because some city
officials had erroneously thought the protesters would interfere with
pedestrian traffic, said Joshua Ewing, spokesman for Mayor Rocky Anderson.

      Homeless advocates, including JEDI Women of Salt Lake City and the
Philadelphia-based Kensington Welfare Rights Union, have said that hundreds
or thousands of protesters will march to the opening ceremonies Feb. 8
whether they obtain a permit or not.

      "It's not about breaking the rule, but the last thing these families
have is their voice," said Cheri Honkala, spokeswomen for the Poor People's
Economy on Human Rights Campaign. "We intend to be peaceful and nonviolent,
but we will march and we will raise our voices. We've set out a route for
our march and we will take that route, regardless."

------------------------------------------------------------------------

E-mail: djensen@desnews.com ; bsnyder@desnews.com

January 12, 2002

© 2002 Deseret News Publishing Company

===================================================+


Date: Tuesday, January 22, 2002 4:26 PM
Subject: RM News: Colorado's outdated water laws, overuse anger conservation group

Rocky Mountain News
January 8, 2002

 

http://www.rockymountainnews.com/drmn/state/article/0,1299,DRMN_21_933110,00.html

 

Getting up on wrong side of the riverbed

Colorado's outdated water laws, overuse anger conservation group

By Todd Hartman, News Staff Writer

 

Archaic water laws and overconsumption are drying up Colorado's streams and
rivers, killing fish, degrading water quality and damaging their
recreational and aesthetic value, a new report says.

The conservation group Trout Unlimited said Monday that Colorado's
19th-century water laws prevent efforts to leave water in streams for
nature's use while encouraging wasteful practices when it comes to
irrigating crops, filling bathtubs and running hydroelectric dams.

The report, called Dry Legacy -- The Challenge for Colorado's Rivers,
represents one of the environmental community's most detailed attacks on
Colorado water law, a system critics have long contended sees water only in
terms of a property right and creates incentives against conservation.

"Unfortunately, a lot of people feel any water left in a stream is wasted --
and we need to get beyond that," said state Sen. Ken Gordon, D-Denver, who
plans to introduce legislation this year making it easier for private groups
to obtain water and dedicate it to stream flows.

The report focuses on 10 Colorado rivers where water use is so intense that
some stretches go completely dry during parts of the year. The list includes
four rivers on the Front Range: Cache La Poudre west of Fort Collins, South
Boulder Creek, Bear Creek southwest of Denver and the South Arkansas River
west of Salida.

"These 10 rivers and streams represent the tip of the iceberg," said David
Nickum, executive director of Trout Unlimited. "If nothing is done to
reverse the current trend, the damage to our fisheries, the state's wildlife
resources and our water quality will get worse and worse."

The report said state databases list 571 waters where low flows, or changes
in flow, harm aquatic habitat and fisheries. Low flows don't only cut back
on water available for fish, but raise water temperatures and harm water
quality by reducing the stream's ability to dilute pollution.

One example: South Boulder Creek, where city, industry and agricultural
needs deplete flows drastically in winter below Eldorado Springs. Though the
state has set minimum flow requirements for the creek, owners of "senior"
water rights often override the state's standards and leave the stream dry,
the report says. In addition, the state's minimum flows are far below those
recommended by the Colorado Division of Wildlife.

Colorado's director of the Department of Natural Resources, Greg Walcher,
hadn't seen the report, but took some issue with Trout Unlimited's
criticism, saying the state-run Colorado Water Conservation Board has helped
keep some water in streams.

"The water conservation board has protected 8,000 miles of rivers and
streams all over the state -- and several hundred natural lakes as well,"
Walcher said. "The problem is, some of those filings tend to be junior water
rights (which can be trumped by senior rights owned by cities and farms)."

Trout Unlimited points out the push to leave water in rivers isn't just
motivated by environmentalism, angling or aesthetics -- but economics as
well. The group said Colorado enjoys a $1.3 billion boost from the fishing
industry and $122 million from commercial rafting.

 

Copyright 2002, Rocky Mountain News. All Rights Reserved.

===================================================+


Date: Tuesday, January 22, 2002 4:20 PM
Subject: Seattle P-I: Water dispute turns uglier

 

http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/local/54282_water12.shtml

Water dispute turns uglier

Grower who has been waiting for permits accuses Ecology chief of witness
tampering

Saturday, January 12, 2002

By ROBERT McCLURE
SEATTLE POST-INTELLIGENCER REPORTER

 

A long-simmering dispute pitting the water needs of Columbia River salmon
against those of Eastern Washington farmers and cities boiled over this week
into witness-tampering allegations against state Department of Ecology
Director Tom Fitzsimmons.

The charges being investigated by Klickitat County authorities were leveled
by carrot magnate Bud Mercer of Prosser, who has battled with Ecology for
more than a decade over his need for more water and who recently turned up
pressure on the agency to be more business-friendly.

As a co-chairman of a select business group advising Gov. Gary Locke, Mercer
last year suggested that Fitzsimmons should be fired. The idea failed to win
the group's endorsement.

But Mercer this week charged that Fitzsimmons tried to intimidate him in a
conversation Jan. 2 into dropping out of a newly revived lawsuit against
Ecology over water rights. Mercer could be called as a witness in the suit.

"He implied that if we didn't get out of the lawsuit, he wasn't going to
process our other permits," Mercer said. "He (said he) is not going to
scratch our back while we're stabbing his."

Fitzsimmons referred inquiries about the matter to Locke's office, which
said the governor continues to strongly back the Ecology head and believes
that Mercer's charges resulted from a misunderstanding.

Although Fitzsimmons would not respond to the carrot grower's allegation
directly yesterday, he charged matter-of-factly in a memorandum last month
that Mercer is illegally drawing water from the Columbia -- and has been for
years.

Fitzsimmons wrote to top Ecology staffers and the governor's office that the
irrigators' water-rights lawsuit would result in a legal and bureaucratic
morass.

"Bottom line: This makes a very confusing mess out of our plans to issue the
Quad Cities permit and 10 other permits including the one Bud Mercer needs
to make legal his six years of illegal water use," Fitzsimmons wrote in the
Dec. 17 memo obtained by the Seattle Post-Intelligencer. The Quad Cities
permit would provide additional water for Kennewick, Pasco, Richland and
West Richland.

The episode is only the latest, though perhaps the most vitriolic, in a
years-long battle between Ecology and the business and agricultural
interests of Eastern Washington, which say state efforts to preserve
Columbia water flows on behalf of salmon are unnecessary and illegal.

Meanwhile, the agency is criticized by environmentalists, who say the agency
isn't doing enough to provide water for fish. They cite scientific studies
suggesting low water flows already are hurting struggling fish runs. And,
they point out, the federal government has forked over hundreds of millions
of dollars to farmers upstream in Idaho for their water -- water Washington
irrigators now want to tap.

"The whole point of the Columbia (water program) is that the cumulative
impact of the water withdrawals has served to decrease the flow," said
Kristie Carevich, staff attorney at the Seattle-based Center for
Environmental Law and Policy. "We are far too low on water for all the
salmon's life stages."

After being sued by the Columbia-Snake Irrigators Association, Ecology
earlier this year agreed to issue water rights to Mercer, the Quad Cities
and nine other applicants. But, except for the Quad Cities municipal water
requests, the rights issued by Ecology forbade use of Columbia water in July
and August, which is when water flows are at their lowest and fish need them
the most.

But at that time of year, "it's the months that you need to water"
farmlands, Mercer said.

"There's no point in issuing functionally useless water rights," said
Darryll Olsen, a representative of the irrigators association. "It's like
buying a new car, and there being no engine or transmission, and the guy
says 'What are you complaining about? You have a car.'"

Mercer said he set up a plant to process carrots in 1986, using water to
wash the crop. "After about a year, it occurred to me that we probably ought
to get a permit for industrial use," he said.

Mercer, who also grows corn, garlic and potatoes, said Ecology advised him
how to apply for a permit changing the use of some of his water from
agricultural to industrial.

But the first permit he applied for -- the one Ecology is now prepared to
grant -- is for about 8 gallons per minute. "What he really needs is about
1,000 gallons per minute," said Phil Crane, an Ecology water-resource
specialist. Subsequent applications that Mercer filed for another 900
gallons per minute are farther back in line, behind other applicants.

However, environmental agencies and the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation have
opposed allowing any more water to be drawn from the Columbia River, saying
that would further harm imperiled salmon stocks.

Ecology has been trying to find "very creative" ways to rearrange water uses
to accommodate the farmers and the cities there, said Sheryl Hutchison,
agency spokeswoman.

The department bought water from the Bonneville Power Administration during
the drought last summer so the farmers could have water, she said, at a cost
of about $1 million.

Environmentalists recently sued BPA for failing to operate dams on the
Columbia and Snake rivers to help salmon, a move that led to the deaths of
millions of young salmon during last summer's drought.

"We had to consider the fish issues," Ecology's Hutchison said. But farmers
"never liked that. Fundamentally, they disagree with this administration on
the fish issue. ... They want ag protected."

The irrigators say the state is illegally enforcing water-flow targets
endorsed by the National Marine Fisheries Service to help salmon. The state
failed to go through a rule-making procedure required under law to honor
those targets, Olsen said.

"There is no gun at their head," Olsen said. "There is no force of law that
says they have to implement that."

The Washington Competitiveness Council, of which Mercer was co-chairman,
echoed that view, recommending in a draft report released Dec. 11 that the
state should "more aggressively defend state water law against conflicting
federal policies."

On Jan. 2, Fitzsimmons was explaining to Mercer that with the suit filed, it
would complicate a long-term plan to iron out the water problems of the
Columbia Basin, said Jim Waldo, a Locke adviser.

Ecology had not previously moved against Mercer for illegal water use,
according to state officials, for several reasons. Primarily, they said,
Mercer was working with Ecology to make his water use legal.

Mercer's involvement in Locke's Competitiveness Council had nothing to do
with his treatment by Ecology, Waldo said.

"We are working on these issues with a lot of people, and we have been
working on them long before the Competitiveness Council was ever thought
up," Waldo said.

===================================================+


Date: Tuesday, January 22, 2002 4:21 PM
Subject: WashPost: Interior's Silence on Corps Plan Questioned

 

Interior's Silence on Corps Plan Questioned

Norton Never Submitted Fish and Wildlife Critique of Controversial Proposal
to Relax Wetlands Rules

 

By Michael Grunwald
Washington Post Staff Writer
Monday, January 14, 2002; Page A05

 

In October, after the Army Corps of Engineers floated a controversial
proposal that would relax a series of wetlands protection rules, the Fish
and Wildlife Service drafted comments denouncing the plan as scientifically
and environmentally unjustified.

The service's 15-page salvo warned that the Corps proposal would "result in
tremendous destruction of aquatic and terrestrial habitats," sacrificing far
too many streams and swamps for houses, levees and coal mines. The plan, the
comments stated, "has no scientific basis."

But the Corps never received those comments. That's because Interior
Secretary Gale A. Norton, who oversees Fish and Wildlife, never submitted
them. So today, the Corps will announce its final version of its
controversial plan without formal input from Interior's key biological
agency.

The only input Interior offered was a memo supporting the coal-mining rule
that the wildlife service found by far the most objectionable.

"Our job is to make sure the secretary gets our best biological advice, and
we did that," said Marshall Jones, the service's acting director. "We don't
decide what happens next."

Interior spokesman Mark Pfeifle said the department had hoped to submit
formal comments on the Corps proposal but ran out of time before it could
finish ironing out disagreements between its Office for Surface Mining and
the wildlife service over the coal-mining rule.

Pfeifle blamed the mix-up on the Democratic-controlled Senate, which has yet
to confirm the assistant secretaries or agency directors that President Bush
has tapped to oversee the mining office and the wildlife service.

"There were not enough hands on deck to move the paperwork through the
system," he said. "That's a genuine concern. It hinders our ability to have
dialogue among the agencies."

Pfeifle also pointed out that the mining office's comments on the Corps
proposals -- which had little in common with the wildlife service's
environmental concerns -- were not submitted either. He said the two
agencies hashed out a compromise letter two days before the Corps deadline,
but Interior's political appointees did not believe it was ready for
submission. The two agencies also have begun to work together on strategies
to minimize the environmental damage caused by strip mining and
mountaintop-removal mining in Appalachia.

Bush has vowed to protect wetlands in no uncertain terms, and his
Environmental Protection Agency submitted comments objecting to the Corps
proposal. But environmentalists and some federal employees argued that the
no-comment situation reflects a new hostility toward environmental issues at
Interior. They said they could not recall a previous case when Interior
failed to supply any formal comments on an issue as important as the Corps
program that provides 80,000 permits to develop in wetlands every year. They
also noted that even though the wildlife service's Oct. 15 comments -- which
were provided to The Washington Post by environmentalists who agree with
them -- went well beyond the disputed mining rule, Interior failed to pass
along any of its concerns on other issues.

In general, the critics accused Norton of suppressing the wildlife service's
science to curry favor with industry, noting that both aides involved with
the memo to the Corps about the coal-mining rule -- Deputy Secretary Steven
Griles and counselor Ann Klee -- had represented mining interests in the
past.

Jamie Rappaport Clark, a National Wildlife Federation vice president who was
Fish and Wildlife director under President Bill Clinton, said Interior would
not have abstained from commenting on a major wetlands issue during her
tenure.

"This is just nuts," Clark said. "For Interior to stop Fish and Wildlife
from commenting on something of this magnitude and importance, that's really
unbelievable."

Everyone agrees that the Corps proposals are extremely important. Under the
Clean Water Act, anyone who wants to drain or fill wetlands must first
obtain a permit from the Corps, which is supposed to make sure the permitted
activities do not create significant harm to the environment. Today, the
Corps will finalize its rules that determine when developers and other
applicants are eligible for "general permits," which are virtually
automatic, and when they must seek "individual permits," which are somewhat
more onerous.

In March 2000, the Clinton administration forced the Corps to propose some
revisions to the general permit program to enhance protections for streams,
bogs and other wetlands, which tend to provide wildlife habitat, filter
drinking water and absorb floods. The revisions would have eliminated
general permits for projects in floodplains, or projects that affect more
than a half-acre of wetlands or more than 300 feet of streams. They also
would have required all permitees to "mitigate" as many acres of wetlands as
they destroy. Environmentalists were delighted, but the National Association
of Home Builders filed suit.

In May 2001, the Corps, never known for environmental activism, proposed a
new plan that eliminated the 300-foot and mitigation rules, weakened other
restrictions but still promised the permit program would have minimal impact
on the environment. The idea, Corps officials said, was to reduce the
bureaucratic review processes for minor projects, allowing regulators to
spend more time analyzing projects with more significant ecological risks.

"We think these new changes are basically about reducing paperwork," said
Susan Asmus, a vice president for the home builders group. "I don't know if
I'd say they'll have no impact on the environment, but I don't think they'll
have much impact."

Officials at the EPA and Fish and Wildlife did not agree. EPA dashed off a
critical comment. Led by federal program activities chief Benjamin Tuggle,
the wildlife service also put together its scathing comment letter,
questioning the science behind many of the Corps proposals. Waiving the
300-foot rule, the letter said, "will encourage the destruction of stream
channels and lead to increased loss of aquatic functions." Trusting
applicants to enumerate endangered species on their property, it continued,
"could be construed to suggest the Corps would be abrogating its
responsibilities under the Endangered Species Act." Allowing general permits
for flood-control projects, it warned, would confer carte blanche upon "a
range of undefined, unlimited activities."

The letter reserved its harshest comments for proposed general permits for
surface-mining operations. It argued that the Corps' own data "speak
overwhelmingly" against the rules, showing that mining operations authorized
with general permits had destroyed thousands of acres of aquatic habitat and
many miles of streams, "far exceed[ing] the Corps' predictions," affecting
as many as 50 threatened or endangered species. It also chided the Corps for
its "lack of basic knowledge of the effects of these permitted losses on the
environment."

On Friday, Tuggle said he was encouraged by the wildlife service's improved
relationship with the Mining Office, but he was clearly disappointed that
Interior had failed to challenge the Corps with formal comments. Fish and
Wildlife, an agency dominated by biologists who tend to tilt green on
environmental issues, has an often tense relationship with Norton and her
aides, most notably over oil-drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife
Refuge.

"Fish and Wildlife is getting rolled," a federal official said.

Pfeifle said Norton is committed to protecting wetlands and other natural
resources. But he said she is also committed to developing natural resources
such as oil, gas and coal, a commitment to energy production he suggested
was lacking in the Clinton administration.

"We're trying to restore the balance," he said.

Pfeifle said environmentalists are unfairly caricaturing public servants
like Klee, who worked for years as an environmental counsel in the Senate
after representing the American Mining Congress, and Griles, who represented
America's largest renewable energy company as well as several mining firms.
But Joe Lovett, a lawyer battling mining companies in Appalachia, said the
no-comment confusion did not suggest a deep environmental commitment.

"That's just amazing," said Lovett, who recently challenged a general permit
that allowed a firm to bury six miles of streams in Kentucky. "They're
abdicating their responsibility."

 

© 2002 The Washington Post Company

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OLD ORRREPORT