Dr. Bill Dienst:
Trying to Create Order Out of Confusion and Chaos with Refugees in Greece


Here are questions that ratepayers are asking of their PUD:
Joint Base Lewis-McChord
Plans to Use Mountain Training
Area of Okanogan and Chelan
Counties for Helicopter Low
Altitude Flying and Landing
24 Hours 7 Days a Week

The Aviation Division within the Directorate of Plans, Training, Mobilization, and Security at Joint Base Lewis-McChord (JBLM) proposes to establish three off-base helicopter training areas and one mountain training area. The U.S. Army is the lead Federal agency for the proposed action. The proposed training areas would support training operations stationed out of JBLM, but would be located off-base within Washington State. Training operations would be conducted using aircraft to include the MH/UH-60 Black Hawk, AH-64 Apache, and MH/CH-47 Chinook. The training areas would be available for use day and night, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, with the exception of Federal holidays.

The Army has prepared a scoping document which is intended to provide interested parties the proposed scope of the Environmental Assessment and to seek additional information pertinent to this analysis. If you have any information that would assist us in conducting an accurate and thorough analysis of the project-specific and cumulative effects associated with the proposed project, you are encouraged to submit them during the scoping period, which has been extended through September 4, 2015. The scoping document including project maps, and a comment form are located at:


To submit comments, send an email to usarmy.jblm.imcom.list.dpw-eis@mail.mil

or write to:

2012 LIGGETT AVE, BOX 339500 MS 17

Comments must be received by September 4, 2015
to be considered.

Chief Rob Edward speaks of responsibilities representing his people and the protocols and ceremonies of Creation he follows for guiding his people and listening to the elders guidance, and remembering the history of his cultural experiences.

DNR Lands Not Available to Navy
for Electronic Warfare Training
on Olympic Peninsula

Some Views of Wildfire Management
Goldmark of DNR Discusses Fire Issues (4.7.16)
Wildfire Workshops—Mapping Your Neighborhood & Other Preparations for Wildfire (1.20.16
Fire Photographer Offers Series of Talks (1.20.16)
After a Bad Fire Season, Okanogan County Looks the Other Way on Land Use (12.10.15)
Managing Fire the Old Way (11.29.15)
Cattlemen Fed Up with Fires (11.20.15
America in Flames: The Future of the Country's Northwest is Hot and Smoky (9.12.15)
Oregon and Washington Wildfire Updates (9.11.15)
How Tech Could Improve Wildland Firefighting to Protect Lives (9.8.15)
"We're Not Sensible in the Federal Government on How We Budget for Fires," says Secretary of the Interior, Sally Jewell (9.7.15)
Ranchers Face Livestock & Livelihood Problems in Washington Wildfires (8.30.15)
Fools at the Fire (8.7.15)
James Hansen, Father of Climate Change Awareness, Calls Paris Talks "a Fraud' (12.12.15)
Iowa's Climate-Change Wisdom (11.22.15)
Portland Mayor and City Council Passes Resolution Preventing Any New Fossil Fuel Infrastructure in the City (11.20.15)
Kids Can't Vote, But They Can Sue WA Dept of Ecology Over Carbon Emissions (11.20.15)
El Niño Plus the Hottest Year on Record: What that Means for 2015 (11.19.15)
In a Warmer World, More Rain Can Mean Less Water (11.16.15)
Greenland is Melting Away (10.27.15)
Where did Global Warming First Appear? (10.02.15)
"The Earth has Shifted..." —Inuit Elders Issue Warning to NASA and the World (9.11.15)
University of Idaho to Host First-Ever National Tribal "Climate Boot Camp", June 2016 (9.11.15)
Why are We Polluting Groundwater in Drought Zones? (9.11.15)
Nine Terrifying Signs of Environmental Doom and Gloom (8.18.15)
The Point of No Return: Climate Change Nightmares are Already Here (8.5.15)
Some Views on Climate Change
POW WOW of Champions

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The Grand Entry on Friday night at Similkameen/Ashnola POWWOW of Champions west of Keremeos, BC along the Ashnola River at the Ashnola Pavillion of the Similkameen Indian Bands.
Okanogan PUD Adopts a New 2016 Budget Excluding Two-Thirds of Enloe Electrification Budget
In December of 2015 the Okanogan Public Utility District adopted a new budget for 2016.

The budget for 2016 reveals spending for Enloe Dam was cut from an estimated $3 million to $1 million. Declining revenues and increased operational and maintenance costs have forced the PUD to revise their budget and consequently postpone schedule tasks associated with the upgrade and reenergizing of Enloe Dam.

None-the-less, the remaining expense of $1 million scheduled for 2016 is to conduct a dam safety investigation, a requirement by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), prior to further upgrades and operation of the structure.

Effort to continue to pursue re-energizing Enloe Dam is exhibited by PUD staff traveling to Washington D. C. to request an extension from FERC, presumably for 5 years, to allow more time to design and refurbish Enloe Dam for hydro-power production.

Click here to see how the OkPUD eliminated a large portion of Enloe Dam’s funding for 2016.
Nevada Residents Fight Energy
Monopoly's Attempts to Control Solar Industry
Warren Buffet's corporate power is forcing Public Utility Commission of Nevada to pass regulations that slash Net Metering of Solar Power and
raises Fixed Fees on Solar Customers by 40%...Read More
Solar worker speaks to crowd before Nevada Public Utility Commission meeting in Las Vegas 2.12.16 about Warren Buffet's Berkshire Hathaway multinational group monopolizing residential solar power market by convincing the commission to slash net metering credit and raise fixed fees on solar customers by 40 percent!
U.S. House of Representative Bills
Threaten to Give Away Our National Forests
to Special Interests
Americans collectively own millions of acres of stunning public land, and our vast national lands system is the envy of the world. Over the last year, however, the public land heist has gained momentum, moving from western state legislatures to Congress. February 25th, the House Subcommittee on Federal Lands is preparing to consider three bills that threaten to transfer control of public lands to states and private interests. Contact your representatives to stop this heist!...Read More


Junior Wilson, Ho-Chunk, Winnebago Tribe, shares his thoughts and prayers concerning sustaining our natural resources of water and treaty rights for generations to come, and sang his prayer about his relative who, in the 1700s, fought for his people's rights, was changed into a Bear by Creator, and rose on a white cloud when he died.
Similkameen Sunday started with a ceremony at Similkameen Falls with Similkameen Indian Band elders, council members, and invited guests.
Herman Edward, teacher and story teller from Lower Similkameen Indian Band talks about the importance of caring for our natural resources and respecting the natural falls as Creator provided them to us.
Herman Edward sings a prayer for the healing of the river, falls, and the people whose responsibility it is to care for Creator's natural resources.
Colville Tribal elder Marge Jameson talks with Herman Edward after the ceremony as Tony Qualtier, LSIB elder and other guests look on.
Theresa Ann Terbasket, Lower Similkameen Indian Band elder, spoke about the changes we all face—changes in the river, what it should look like—for without water, we become desert, even within ourselves.
Golden Eagle Drum, from Nespelem, kept us focused on how special our gathering in support of the Similkameen River and Falls and the People was on Similkameen Sunday.
Herman Edward, Lower Similkameen Indian Band, sharing songs on the multi-register flute he made.
Mayor Patrick Plumb and children welcome the Similkameen Indian Band members, Colville Confederated Tribal members and the public to Tonasket and Similkameen Sunday.
Steve Pollard, Steve Bell, Ray Dispenza, and Kyle MacConnel sing and play for us "Similkameen, River of Gold."
Herman Edward shared with us the story of Sinkuleep (Coyote) bringing the salmon up the river.
Bob Turner, Chief Tonasket's great-grandson from Wilbur, spoke about his grandpa's big family, giving him 18 aunts and uncles he learned a lot from, and how important it is for us to get together and share our stories.
Columbia, Snake Sockeye Decimated by 2015's Warm Rivers (4.18.16)
NW Power/Conservation Council Votes to Move Forward on Salmon/
Steelhead Habitat Assessment above Grand Coulee Dam
NW Power/Conservation Council Hears "Lessons Learned" Report on High Mortality for 2015 Sockeye Run (4.15.16)
California, Oregon, U.S. Agree to Dismantle Four Dams on Klamath River (4.5.16)
Pacific Lamprey Return to White Salmon and Elwah Rivers after Dam Removal (3.30.16)
Bureau of Reclamation Climate Impact ASssessment for Columbia Basin: Runoff to Increase in Winter, Decline in Summer (4.1.16)
A Look at Restoring Wild Salmon Runs on the Columbia River (2.7.16)
States, Feds, PacificCorp Move Forward on Klamath Agreement through FERC Focusing on Dam Removals (2.5.16)
It Isn't Just El Niño We have to be Concerned about: Researchers ar Studying Another Huge System, Madden-Julian Oscillation (MJO) in the Western Pacific that Impacts Wolrd Weather (1.29.16)
2015 Salmon Survival Report Updates Smolt-to-Adult Return Data for Columbia/Snake River Salmon & Steelhead (12.29.15)
Songbird Study Shows River Ecosystem Recovery after Dam Removal, Return of Salmon Nutrients (12.29.15)
The Northwest Power and Conservation Council Moves Proposal for Evaluating Salmon Habitat Above Grand Coulee to Science Review (12.18.15)
NOAA's Three Month El Niño Outlook: Early Months of 2016 Likely to See Rapid Snowmelt, Warmer, Drier (12.18.15)
Methow Valley Salmon Recovery Foundation Receives Funds for Threatened Salmonids (12.16.15)
Strong El Niño Does Its Thing to the Northwest—Pumped Up Jet Stream Brings onvoy of Storms (12.11.15)
Report Analyzes Cause of This Year's Warm Fish-Killing Water of Columbia and Snake Rivers (11.6.15)
Winter Weather Forecast Conference: Yes on Warmer Winter, Jury Still Out on Amount of Precipitation (10.30.15)
Can Salmon & Steelhead Survive above Grand Coulee Dam? Council Investigation May Provide Answer (10.16.15)
Fall Chinook Return Upgraded Again: Harvest Managers Struggle with Small Wild Steelhead Return (10.2.15)
With El Niño, Washington DOE Expecting Historic Statewide Drought to Extend into Second Year (10.02.15)
Research Shows Design, Operation for Salmon Passage at Dams NOT Optimal for Pacific Lamprey (10.02.15)
Rivers cooling off for fish, but low water levels still a problem (9.26.15)
• EPA Schedules Soil Pollution Testing on Columbia River Properties on Lake Roosevelt Oct 1st in Northport WA
Study Compares Hatchery and Wild Steelhead Spawn Timing, Emergence, and Survival in Washington Stream (9.11.15)
NOAA Fisheries Declares Four Northwest Salmon Stocks "Subject to Overfishing" (9.11.15)
When is a Fishery Sustainable? Report Discusses Ins and Outs of Definitions, Approaches (9.11.15)
Salmon "Nightmare" Ahead? Pending Ocean Warming Puts Fish, Orcas in Peril (9.10.15)
Study: Habitat Restoration Projects Often Fail to Target HIghest Priority Needs for Ecosystem of Salmon (9.4.15)
Recent High Sockeye Returns to Columbia River Expected to Decline in Next Few Years Due to 2015 Mortality from Low and Warm Water in Most Sockeye Spawning Rivers(9.4.15)
Strongest Summer Storm in Northwest History (8.31.15)
NOAA Releases New Climate Science Strategy to Reduce Climate Change Effects on Fisheries (8.28.15)
Teck Metals, EPA Reach Agreement to Cleanup Lead-Contaminated Properties in Upper Columbia (8.28.15)
El Niño Looking to be One of the Strongest Since 1997: More Warm Temps, Less Snow (8.14.15)
Teck Metals Limited of Canada and Teck American Inc. Agree to Clean Up Fifteen Lead-Contaminated Properties in Northport WA (8.13.15)
Helicopter Training Planned for Okanogan and Chelan Counties Scoping Extended (8.5.15)
Hot Water Kills Half of Columbia River Sockeye Salmon (7.27.15)
Half of the Columbia River's Sockeye Salmon are Dying Due to Hot Water (7.27.15)
WA State Closing, Restricting Fishing in More Then 30 Rivers with Reduced Flows, Hot Temps (7.17.15)
Flavobaterium Bateria Associated with Warm Water Taking Toll on Salmon & Steelhead in the Northwest (7.10.15)
Native Americans Exhibit Looks at Salmon Preservation Efforts (7.5.15)
Energy Export Decisions Loom over the Columbia River (6.30.15)
State Notifying Eastern Washington Irrigators to Curtail Water Use Due to Low Flows (6.26.15)
NOAA says Warming Rate Last 15 Years has been as Fast or Faster than Previous 50 Years (6.12.15)
State Dept says Columbia River Treaty Negotiating Position to Include Ecosystem-based Function (Salmon Restoration) (6.12.15)
Workshop Takes a Look at How Wildfires May Help or Hurt Columbia Basin Salmon (5.22.15)
The Lost Fish: Pacific Lamprey film at CCC, 4.23.15 at 7 pm
Contaminants Found in Pacific Lamprey Could be Contributing to Population Decline (4.17.15)
Researchers Find Efficient Way to Establish Presence of Pacific Lamprey for Population Surveys (4.17.15)
Water Supply from Early Runoff Depleting Snowpack, Columbia River at Dalles Dam Projected at 82 Percent (4.10.15)
Study Reports British Columbia and Alberta to Lose 70% of Their Glaciers by 2100 (4.10.15)
Drought: Washington Seeks To Lease Irrigation Water To Keep Upper Yakima Streams From Going Dry (4.3.15)
Producing Salmon: Study Looks At Cost Effectiveness Of Habitat Restoration Compared To Hatcheries (4.3.15)
Study Looks At Pacific Lamprey That Pass 8 Dams Into Snake River Tributaries, Notes Good Habitat (3.13.15)
Okanogan PUD in Preliminary Talks to Swap Enloe Dam for Fish Habitat (3.12.15)
A Weak El Niño Has Arrived, Enhanced Chance For Warm Spring In Western Oregon, Western Washington (3.13.15)
Shoreline Management Plan Minimizes Regulations of Subdivisions Near Rivers, Lakes and Wetlands (3.7.15)
Large Numbers Expected for 2015 Fall Chinook Return to Columbia (2.20.15)
Study: Pacific Lamprey Decline Stems From Habitat Loss – Side Channels, Low Velocity Streams (2.13.15)
OkPUD Commisioners Preserve All Options: License Extension will Allow Them to Explore Power Generation, Dam Removal or Water-Right Change (2.12.15)
National Marine Fisheries Service (part of NOAA) Launches 5-Year Status Review of ESA-Listings of 13 Columbia Basin Salmon, Steehead Stocks (2.13.15)
"NO ON ENLOE" Supporters Needed at Feb 9th OkPUD Meeting, 2:30 pm or Call PUD Commisioners to Voice Opposition to Enloe Electrification (2.4.15)
Dry January 2015 Dropping Water Supply Forecasts—Washington-Oregon Cascedes Snowpack at 50 Percent Average or Less (1.23.15)
Fortis BC Funds Taken Off Ecology's Water Projects (1.18.15)
Tribes Lay Out Process for Investigating Feasibility of Salmon Reintroduction above Chief Joseph and Grand Coulee Dams (1.16.15)
Cash-strapped Washington State Seeks Funding to Build New Dam on Similkameen River in BC (1.13.15)
A Reasoned "NO" on Enloe Dam Re-Electrification (11.25.14)
Fate of Enloe Dam Still Uncertain (11.20.14)
Whooshh System, Known as the Salmon Cannon, Gets Popular Science Award—used on the Washougal River (11.14.14)
Commission Adopts Comprehensive Update to Washington State's Hydraulic Code Rules (11.7.14)
Will Getting Some Steehead to Spawn Twice in Methow Improve Numbers? (11.7.14)
Navy Forges New Electronic Warfare Strategy: Electromagnetic Maneuver Warfare (11.5.14)
Washington State Fish & Wildlife New Hydraulic Code Rules Changes (10.28.14)
Officials Celebrate $10 million in Projects to Increase Flows in Twisp & Methow Rivers (10.17.14)
NOAA Winter Outlook: Warm Winter for Pacific Northwest, Below-Average Precipitation (10.17.14)
Salmon People Pray for Sacred Fish to Return to Historic Home (10.5.14)
Fish Passage White Paper from Columbia Basin Tribes Coalition on the Columbia River Treaty 2014/2024 Review (2.14.14)
Is Your Fish from the Columbia River Toxic? Everyone Needs to Know(10.4.14)
Whooshh Innovations—a Gentle Fish Passage Technology
Conservation Groups appeal Enloe Dam Water Rights Decision
Fish Agencies offer to Remove Enloe Dam for Fish Habitat
Okanogan PUD Ratepayers: Enloe Dam Project Costs too much, isn't Economical, and will Raise Your Rates
U.S. and Canadian Tribal, Religious, and Community Leaders Document Damage by Dams to Columbia River (6.8.14)
All Signs Still Point to Likely El Niño Conditions for Pacific Northwest— Warmer & Dryer Conditions (6.6.14)
Similkameen - 150 Years
PUD Spending Heavily on Risky Economic Project
Similkameen Fish Habitat—Potential New Economy
State Board Rules: Similkameen Falls Deserves Water
Proposed Flow Over Similkameen Falls
WA Pollution Control Hearings Board upholds Petition for Reconsideration of Aesthetic Flows over Similkameen Falls
State Agency Certification Supports Dewatering Similkameen Falls
When Public Utility Districts Forget Who They Serve
When will Our Nightmare End?
Pollution Control Hearing Board Decision in favor of Aesthetic Values
Report Shows Enloe Dam to be Economic Loss
What Do We Do about Okanogan PUD?
Ratepayer Issues with the Proposed Enloe Dam Facilities Rebuild
Group's Appeal State's Decision to De-water Similkameen Falls
Can Washington State Dry Up a River? River Advocates say "No"
Will Enloe Dam Ever Come Down?
Courtroom Updates of Appeal of Dept. of Ecology's Decision to Allow Ok PUD to Dewater Similkameen Falls
Upper Columbia River Stories

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U.S. House of Representatives Bills Threaten to Give Away National Forests (2.24.16)
Fracking Goes on Trial for Human Rights Violations (11.14.15)
Earth's Nutrient Cycle: Study Shows the "Fertilization" from Ocean to Land is Down 75 Percent (10.30.15)
Columbia River Basin Agencies Release Draft 2016 Water Management Plan (10.23.15)
USGS Studying Low 2015 Snowpack and River Flows to Provide Insight into Future Droughts (9.11.15)
EPA Proposes Rule to Toughen Washington State's Water Quality Standards and New Fish Consumption Rate (9.4.15)
The Water Crisis Comes HomeThanks to Growing Inequality, Climate Change, and the Mismanagement of Natural Resources (7.15.15)
Climate-Related Alaska Glaciers Melting Unlikely to Slow Down, Major Driver of Sea Level Rise (6.19.15)
Water Temps (68°F), Lower Flows Prompt Earlier than Usual Summer Hydro Operations in Lower Snake River (6.19.15)
Once Stable Antarctic Glaciers have Suddenly Started Melting (5.23.15)
• "Cowspiracy: The Sustainability Secret"—As Western States Face Drought, Film Links Meat Industry to Water Scarcity & Climate Change (4.7.15)
Columbia River Treaty Progress and History (CELP Newsletters)
Columbia River is Number 2 on America's Endangered Rivers (4.7.15)
Washington State DNR not Interested in Letting Navy Use Land for Electronic Warefare Training (3.2.15)
Drought-Stricken California Exempts Big Oil and Big Ag from Mandatory Restrictions (4.3.15)
Washington Ecology Settles Tri-Cities ‘Bucket For Bucket’ Water Rights Case OF Easterday Farms (4.3.15)
Northwest Forest Plan Listening Sessions Scheduled for March 25 in Region 6—Times to be announced (2.18.15)
Methow Valley Citizens Council's Two-pronged Strategy: Raising a Strong Community Voice & Taking Legal Action (11.21.14)
Newly Revised Publication Details Federal Sustainable Agriculture and Forestry Program Funding (11.10.14)
Citizens Groups Appeal Okanogan County Commissioners Decision on Need for EIS of Draft Comprehensive Plan (5.30.14)
Kinross Gold will Drop Major Gold Exploration on Buckhorn Mountain in Chesaw WA (5.29.14)
Concerns Rise Over Hanford Waste Tanks (3.2.14)
Species Banks provide Ecosystem Services (5.14.13)

We can End the Columbia Basin Salmon Wars Now by Balancing Energy, Conservation (9.22.12)
SoloPower rolls out flexible Solar Panels in Portland plant opening (9.29.12)
Teck Metals Ltd. admits using Columbia River as Industrial Sewer (9.13.12)
Harvard Medical School Study confirms High Rate of Colitis down river from Teck Smelter (8.14.12)
Teck Metals Ltd. admits Polluting Columbia River in U.S., but does not concede dumped waste caused harm (9.10.12)
Hearing on Dick (alias "Doc") Hastings' bill (Saving Our Dams and Hydropower Development & Jobs Act 2012) point up divide between fish, hydropower forces (8.16.12)
Groups say state ignored Clean Water standards when certifying Enloe Dam (8.21.12)
Appeal filed over Enloe water permit (8.15.12)
America's Deficit Attention Disorder—Money is the least of our problems—Pay attention to the real deficits that are killing us (8.10.12)
USDA Seeks Comments on Non-Browning Genetically Engineered Apples from Canada (8.17.12)
• Deb Abramhamson: Interview with SHAWL founder who receives Spokane Water Hero award
• Rachael Paschal Osborn: Climate Change and The Columbia River Treaty Renegotiation in 2014
Northport WA residents downwind of Teck smelter see disease rise (8.12.12)
Colville Tribe, Teck Resources go to court over Columbia River Pollution(8.12.12)
California Hydroelectricity Production vulnerable to Climate Change (8.8.12)
Ecovillage sows resistance and a Sustainable Panama (8.6.12)
Pebble Mine near headwaters of Bristol Bay in SW Alaska likely to endanger largest Sockeye salmon fishery in world (7.25.12)
Exempt Wells & Sprawl Threaten Sharp-tail Grouse Habitat & Cattle Ranching in Tunk Valley, Okanogan County (7.15.12)

NOTICE  -- In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, this material is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving it for research and educational purposes, with the understanding that the material is copyrighted by the author as stated in the material.  We are making such material available in our efforts to advance understanding of environmental, political, human rights, economic, democratic, scientific, and social justice issues. We believe this constitutes a 'fair use' of any such copyrighted material.  For more information go to: http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/ 17/107.shtml
If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond 'fair use', you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.

Cliff Mass Weather Blog
Community Cultural Center of Tonasket
Conservation Northwest
Conscious Cultural Festival
Ferry County Co-op
Friends of the Trees Society
Green Okanogan
Kettle Range Conservation Group
Lake Roosevelt Forum
LA Catholic Worker Agitator
Methow Naturalist
Methow Valley Citizens Council
Okanogan Highlands Alliance
Okanogan Land Trust
Planet Drum Foundation
SHAWL Society
Slow Food Okanogan County
SolWest Renewable Energy Faire
Tonasket Natural Foods Co-op
Wisdom of the 13 Grandmothers

Events Calendar

• Apr 15-17 - Medicinal Herb Growing & Marketing Conference - This 1st conference is a wonderful educational and networking opportunity that will strengthen the health and vitality of the herbal community in general and herb farmers in particular.
• April 16-18 Democracy Awakening, Washington DC Rally—200+ organizations galvanizing the emerging movement that's challenging America to live up to its promise of government of, by, and for the people!


Community Links
Friends of the Similkameen River
Land & Water

Similkameen Trail Connector Phase 1
Similkameen Falls Album

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Listen to Junior Wilson, Ho-Chunk, Winnebago Tribe, shares his thoughts and prayer concerning sustaining our natural resources of water and treaty rights for generations to come.

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Listen to Herman Edward talk of life, responsibility to Mother Earth, and play his multi-register flute.

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Listen to Ray Dispenza's "Similkameen, River of Gold" played by Steve Pollard, Steve Bell, Kyle MacConnel, and Ray.
Similkameen Sunday Celebration
Videos of Similkameen Sunday

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Listen to Theresa Ann Terbasket speak about the changes we face.

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Listen to Chief Rob Edwards speak of responsibilities representing his people and the protocols and ceremonies of Creation.
A Collection of Wildfire
We offer these suggestions for increasing wildfire safety around the home and community to stimulate a discussion, and hopefully more activity in reducing fire risk. Click the image to the left to download a PDF file of fire protection resources (it is a large file so will take a while to download). Or you can download individual articles: (1) Why the Forests are Burning, (2) Home Fire Protection, (3) Treating Vegetation, (4) Anatomy of a Burn, (5) Fire & Forest Management: Myth & Reality, (6) Smoke in Our Eyes: The Politics of Fire, (7) Restoration Forestry

Last Year's
Similkameen Sunday

Upper & Lower
Similkameen Bands
and Colville Tribes

Click to view Mobile Electronic Warfare Test Sites Maps,U.S. Navy's Final Environmental Assessment (EA), See Comments by groups and individuals: Karen Sullivan—Violations of Law—Navy EW Plans and Forest Service, Olympic Park Associates, Kettle Range Conservation Group, Stuart R Gillespie, Dana Visalli, Other Comments, Articles: Navy Forges Electronic Warfare: Electromagnetic Maneuver Warfare, Navy Plans Electromagnetic War Games over National Park and Forests in Washington State, Documents Show that Navy's Electromagnetic Warfare Training Would Harm Humans and Wildlife.

The Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest is taking comments until Nov 17th on the NEPA process that will be used to make their decision to issue a special use permit for 5 years to the Navy to conduct their Mobile Electronic Warfare Test Sites using Forest Service roads.The comment period will only be extended if they are receiving a lot of comments. (See below for address.) We asked the Navy at the Open House why doesn't the Navy apply to the U.S. Army to use the Yakima Training Center—designed for military use—for their exercises rather than USFS property. Their answer was that the training center is over booked and they cannot schedule its use. Every time we go through that area on Hwy 97, it is completely vacant of activity. Someone needs to check out their schedule and see if the Navy's activities could be worked into their schedule. Click to view OkanWen National Forest Notice of Navy's Plans. Here's an account of Tuesday's Open House the Navy and Okan-Wen National Forest written by Dana Visalli of the Methow Valley.

Some of our concerns are:
(1) It is not clear what attempts were made to gain local comments in determining a “no impact decision” by the U.S. Navy.
(2) Has livestock and wildlife safety been considered with mobile emitters on designated roads?
(3) It is also unclear how Navy will keep humans from using roads for recreation, wood gathering, hunting, etc.
(4) Navy’s EA does identify the general direction (3 degrees vertical from the horizon towards the west), but not the intensity of electronic radiation mobile emitters will be pulsing from our forest service roads.

October 17, the Okanogan-Wenatchee Forest sent us a letter stating there will be a 30-day comment period that will only be announced in the Wenatchee World or on the Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest Web site. The comment period will be from Oct 17 to Nov 17. Send your comments to Supervisior Balboni's address below. We have a good chance to extend our comment period if enough comments come pouring into Supervisor Balboni office.

The public comment period has been extended until Nov 28 to submit comments to the Olympic National Forest. There will be a public meeting on Nov 6 from 6-8pm at the Port Angeles City Council Chambers, located at 321 East Fifth Street, Port Angeles, WA where the U.S. Navy and Olympic National Forest Service will answer questions. Send comments to:

• Greg T Wahl, 1835 Black Lake Blvd SW, Suite A, Olympia, WA 983512, gtwahl@fs.fed.us, 360.956.2375. Comment period ends Nov 28th.

Please request a public meeting closer to the Colville National Forest to explain their process in making a decision to allow the Navy to set up these Military Operation Areas on Forest Service Roads. You can send your comments and requests to:

• Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest Supervisor, Michael L. Balboni, c/o Phil Christy, 1 West Winesap, Tonasket WA 98855, pchristy@fs.fed.us, 509.486.5137. Comment period ends Nov 17 unless it gets extended.
• Colville National Forest Supervisor Laura Jo West, c/o Karen Nooney, Colville National Forest, 765 S. Main Street, Colville WA 99114, knooney@fs.fed.us, 509.684.7189. Franklin Pemberton, the CNF Public Affairs Officier, fpemberton@fs.fed.us, called January 7th to say the Navy has not sent CNF an application as of yet to use CNF forest roads. He did not expect to hear anything until February. He also said that the CNF does not see the Navy's uses of forest roads as being compatible with CNF stewardship of natural resources.

U.S. Navy's Plans for
using Forest Service Roads
Boeing's $10 billion EA-18G Growler next generation Electronic Warfare aircraft flying over our National Forests disturbing wildlife and human dwellings close to the forest.
The Navy's Mobile Electromagnetic Radiation Emitter proposed truck that will be parked at specific areas on forest service roads up to 50 days during a year for up to 8 hr stretches. So far the Navy has not requested the USFS to plow roads during winter months. Radiation will be directed west at a 3 degree arc up from horizon.
Land and Community in the
Upper Columbia River Bioregion
Similkameen River Restoration

Floodplain Development Proposals Need Your Comments! (9.17.15)
Okanogan Views Newsletter (Winter 2011)
Final Okanogan Valley Wildlife Public Scoping Workshop Report (3.11.15)
Shoreline Management Plan Minimizes Regulations of Subdivisions Near Rivers, Lakes and Wetlands
Okanogan County Comprehensive Plan is headed for Court
Protecting Place

In the first 50 years of operation, cost for building, operating and maintaining Enloe Dam will exceed the revenue generated by the project, according to forecasts made by the Okanogan PUD.
Revised Cost Figure—Summary, p. 11 and Revised Cost Figure—2014 D-2 (excluding sunk costs), p. 15 (OkPUD 2015 Enloe Project Budget).

Between 2019, when electrical generation would start, and 2068 when the 50 years license of operation expires, it is estimated that Enloe Dam would generate about $152 million in income. However, construction would cost at least $62 million (the construction loan of approximately $39 million and $23 million in interest). Operations and maintenance will cost about $168 million during the 50 year period. When costs are subtracted from generation revenue, ratepayers are left with debt of
$16 million.

Since power generation conservatively will stay the same during the 50 year license, at least $1.7 million is added yearly to the cost of Enloe operations, modeled over time using an annual 2.5% escalator on Operations & Maintenance costs. Indeed, the project results in a loss of over $76 million. That is a cost of about $3,918 for each of the PUD’s 20,000 residential customers over the 50 year license, or $6.53 each month. (Model: OkPUD Enloe—Blended Resource).

Note: For more information on the use of this model, please telephone Jeré & Rick Gillespie, 831.332.4778.

Formulas Used to Calculate Numbers:

(Enloe MW Generation) X (hours/Year) = (Enloe MWhrs/Year)

(4.5 MW) X (8,760 hrs/year) = 39,420 MWhrs/year

(Cost $$/MWhr) X (Enloe MWhrs/year) = (Enloe Power Revenue $$/year)

($77/MWhr) X (39,420 MWhrs/year) = $3,035,340/year

In Year 2019:

(Enloe Power Revenue $$/year) + (Enloe Operation & Maintenance $$/year) + (Enloe Construction Debt $$) = (Enloe Debt $$)

$3,035,340/year + ($-1,719,000) + ($-2,018,000) = $-701,660

In Year 2069:

$3,035,340/year + ($-5,764,283) + ($0) = $-2,728,943

Potential Costs to each ratepayer over 50 years:

(Enloe costs) / (20,000 residential customers) / (50 years) / (12 months/yr = (Ratepayer cost/month)

$78,366,596 / 20,000 / 50 years / 12 months/year = $6.53/month

Link to Spreadsheet that displays the outcomes for Enloe costs projected over 50 years.

Okanogan Ratepayers Stand Up Against
the Economic Irresponsibility of Enloe Debt

WE, RATEPAYERS AND CITIZENS OF OKANOGAN COUNTY, WASHINGTON, stand in opposition to all further EXPENDITURES by the PUBLIC UTILITY, OKANOGAN PUD NO. 1 toward Electrification of ENLOE DAM on the Similkameen River. These are the “GLARING” reasons we say “NO ON OLD ENLOE!”

1. We, the ratepayers, our children and grandchildren will all shoulder higher energy costs resulting from the estimated $39 million dollars in borrowed money and $23 milion in interest necessary to build this proposed power plant, not to forget the $78 million cumulated each year over the 50 year license of operation. Actual costs of construction could easily run 20% higher or more.
2. Revenue estimates by the PUD show the Enloe Dam Project will lose $1.1-1.7 million dollars annually based on current energy prices and market trend analysis by both PUD and independent experts. More borrowing and compounding interest could even push the final project costs higher topping $140 million dollars by some estimates.
3. New contracts now being worked out with Douglas County PUD will provide Okanogan County with a larger portion of Wells Dam if successfully negotiated, supplying the power we need beyond the year 2048. There is no justification for this very expensive power generation from Enloe Dam.
4. The 4.5 MW average yearly output of power plant proposed by the PUD will only contribute 2% of the electric needs of our Utility. It supplies less than 20% of energy demanded by the Oroville sub-station. The PUD has never justified their expenditures to the ratepayers and to the Okanogan County economy.
5. This project has already drained $12 million from Okanogan County’s economy. It has further impoverished the district ratepayers while enriching elite Bankers, Bond-Brokers, Wealthy Investors, Law Firms and Lobbyists, High priced Engineers and Consultants. It has been a great project for them and they all encourage our commissioners to push on, yet Enloe electrification provides little or no benefit to the ratepayers. It is time to stop wasting time and resources on this miscalculation.
6. We all struggle to maintain our households often on low fixed incomes against rising costs of living. Our savings are gone and the quality of our lives is in decline. The more our “Public Utility” borrows, the higher our rates climb. Serve the People. Stop the spending. Pay Down the debt. Maintain a reliable, safe distribution system.
The publication "Trial by Fire: The Methow Valley's Summer of Disaster" by the Methow Valley News provides a sobering look at how we must prepare for wildfire and pull together in cooperative efforts to survive wildfire in our fire-evolved forests & grasslands.
Scott Vejraska, 509.826.7088, scottv@okpud.org
Ernie Bolz, 509.486.2553, ernieb@okpud.org
Steve Houston, 509.429.9248, steveh@okpud.org

Please plan to come to OkPUD Meetings at 2:30 pm on Mondays at PUD Auditorum, 1331 2nd Avenue North, Okanogan WA 98840 to voice your reasons to say to commissioners "NO ON ENLOE." Check OkPUD Web site when actual Mondays meetings are held. If you cannot make the meeting, give the Commissioners a call or e-mail them to say your concerns.
Let us know you have made contact. THANKS!
Columbiana, 509.485.3844, rickg@columbiana.org

NOAA Could Still Take the Lead on Removal of
Enloe Dam

Decision Could be Made to Remove Enloe Dam

Oroville, WA –Enloe Dam has been out of the news since the “No on Enloe” Campaign put its collective foot down last February. It was clearly demonstrated, using PUD estimates, Enloe Dam Electrification would lose $1.2-1.7 million dollars annually. The $40-50 million dollar construction price tag will require continuous rate increases no one can afford and creates a downward spiral of debt that could bankrupt more than just the PUD.

The ratepayers of Okanogan County have voted twice on this issue, turning out two incumbent PUD Commissioners who campaigned for electrification. Recognizing the net economic loses that would result from electrification of Enloe Dam, our current commissioners told ratepayers they needed a “large federal agency with deep pockets” to assume all liability for Enloe Dam before they could walk away.

Tuesday, June 30th, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) met with Commissioner Vejraska, Manager John Grubich and other staff, to discuss their interest in becoming the lead agency for the removal of Enloe Dam. This is great news. We may have the lead agency we have been waiting for. This meeting with NOAA/NMFS was discussed at the PUD meeting on July 13th. The PUD moved the goal post by wanting $13 million of NOAA.

It is time to get back down to the PUD and get involved in what is going on. Ratepayers and local residents should contact their Commissioners and attend August 10 meeting to help the PUD make the right decisions. —Joseph Enzensperger

Why are the Commissioners taking another vote on Enloe?

Will it be to remove the dam now that the PUD has a draft dam removal plan, the money for removal has been shown to be available if and when the PUD decides on removal (with little to zero cost to the PUD), and they have a federal agency interested in becoming the lead agency?

If not a vote for removal, what has changed regarding the power and economic value of Enloe? Based on the PUD’s 2014 revised cost figures, dam construction is expected to now cost between $40 - $50 million. With operating costs totaling $3,193,696 it will cost OPUD $1.1 million more each year to operate the Enloe Project than it would cost to purchase the power on the open market.

From these numbers, Enloe seems like a really bad deal for the PUD and for ratepayers. Why then is the PUD moving ahead with borrowing money to build out Enloe?

The PUD is now asking to be reimbursed for the full costs of getting the license, in order to satisfy bond holders. Didn’t the funds for the license come out of the general fund each year? The PUD has written off other debt. Isn’t this simply a new roadblock thrown up by PUD staff who want to continue to borrow & build, in spite of the costs to the ratepayers?

Can someone in the PUD explain to us how not recovering the full $14 million in Enloe sunk costs will jeopardize the PUD getting loans from the bond market? Is this information verifiable by auditors? Due Diligence to the ratepayers requires the PUD to have its statements on financial matters verified by authorized experts.

Why should ratepayers support a project that will lose this much money for at least the foreseeable future? Commissioner Houston has said that Enloe will lose money for at least the first 40 years. The PUD’s revised numbers show Enloe losing about $1 M per year and at the net present value it may never generate a profit.

Why is the PUD taking such a hard line on providing basic information needed for a lead agency decision? So far, both the Colville Tribe and NOAA have expressed interest in becoming lead agency. To move forward, they have asked for basic information on sediment behind the dam and dam safety information, and to date the PUD has refused to share this information.

What is behind the dam and why has the PUD blocked any attempt to find out? What are they afraid of? Agencies, tribes and nonprofits contracted with the USGS to develop a sediment study, fully funded that study with no cost to the PUD or its ratepayers, and proposed to complete the study this summer during very low flows. To date, the PUD has refused to let that study move forward.

PUD expenditures & rate hikes have been a continuing drain for its ratepayers. Just recently, the PUD has said it needs to recover the nearly $14M that it has spent on the Enloe project so far. The reason given was that without recovering the $$, the PUD could not keep its bond ratings up and was at risk to default. What is the status on the bond, what has changed, and why is the PUD just figuring this out now?