Relinquishment: The latest Water stealing scheme. 

by Tom Flint
forwarded by Sharon Shumate

"The best thing for fish is probably to stop all irrigation,  terminate any kind of development in riparian areas and ... to take out the dams and ... move east," (Will Stelle, regional director of NMFS,  Dec 18 1999, Tri-Cities Herald)

2/3/02 -  Washington State continues to try and balance the states water needs off the backs of farmers and property owners by something called relinquishment ( definition; to give up, abandon, or surrender ) in the  latest working of water legislation.  

Basically what this means is if you have not used the maximum amount of your water allocation from your water right, then the state wants the difference of the water from what you used to what your maximum allocation is.      

Relinquishment is nothing more than a way for the for the state to steal peoples' water rights in the name of growth and salmon restoration and in stream flows based on speculation and junk science. 

     In some years farmers may use their maximum water right allocation and in some years they will not depending upon a variety of factors, the largest of which is the type of crop being grown and weather conditions.  One can make a comparison to a annualized purchased annuity and the purchase of property and the associated water right.  The purchaser of the annuity has the right to a payback of that investment.  

Let's say that the annual annuity payback is $1000 and you put it in a account and you used $ 600,  leaving you with a balance of $ $400.  Comparing this to the water right, now through relinquishment the state of Washington wants this annual $ 400 balance you have, forever.  This maneuver is nothing short of robbery, and is another misappropriation an attack on western water law.   If the state would like water for growth, salmon and instream flows, then they need to work on a system where the state could purchase the unused balance of water from water right owners or people with other water allocations.  To try and steal it through relinquishment is one more example of the West side mentality that says we need it and you will give it to us. 

     I see this as a taking, as the water right is a value of the property when you bought it.  Now our government is still hard at work with your tax dollars trying to steal water from people based upon unknown in stream flows for salmon when they have yet to define what that is and how much a salmon actually needs.

     If you are a water right holder and water user I would encourage you to contact your representative and let them know how you feel about water relinquishment and the other attempts that have been tried to take water away from people.

The following articles have been condensed to save space and may not contain the correct punctuation or structure.) (Underlined titles are linked to the original article.) 

Judge rules state can't use NMFS flow  -- Feb 2 2002, The Register Guard.  ( Thanks Joe Lilly )
The state Department of Ecology cannot base water rights decisions on river flow rates set by the federal National Marine Fisheries Service, a judge has ruled.  The decision Thursday by Benton County Superior Court Judge Dennis Yule was based on the state's adoption of the water flow standard and not the merits of the federal biological opinion on salmon and steelhead.   The ruling is considered a victory for the Columbia-Snake River Irrigators Association and the Kennewick Hospital District, which filed a lawsuit claiming the state had illegally adopted the federal standard without proper public review.   The ruling was being studied for possible appeal.   ``We are going to have to go back and discuss with the Ecology Department what the next step will be,'' Assistant Attorney General Barbara Markham said.   In addition to restricting use of the biological opinion, Yule questioned the feasibility of the state's case-by-case consultation approach to water rights applications.  ``No matter how assiduously the state may seek case-by-case consultation, it appears to me that the department would not receive it,'' Yule said.   Yule's ruling affects nine applications for Columbia River water rights.   The judge left open the question of whether his ruling applies to all Columbia River water rights applications before the state.   Brian Iller, attorney for the irrigators, said he intends to file a motion requiring the state to issue the nine disputed applications as soon as possible.  ``They are free to issue the permits,'' he said.   ``But they cannot apply the biological (water) flow targets.''   In the case, irrigators set out to prove Ecology Department officials had adopted federal flow targets as the basis for water decisions on the Columbia River.   Draft permits said water users could not make withdrawals during July and August - the peak of irrigation season - making their permits substantially less valuable.   Bob Barwin, a top water manager for the Ecology Department in Yakima, said he tried to meet federal demands while giving water seekers some of what they wanted.   Based on a study done by one of the applicants, Barwin concluded that 18 fish a year would die if the nine water rights permits were granted.   The state did not do any quantitative analysis of the fishery impacts, the irrigators contend.   Markham defended the lack of a formal study, saying NMFS has the best available science.   ``Do you see any point in doing a quantitative analysis when the river already is overdrafted?'' she asked.   ``In each case, the evidence is that there is already not enough water for fish.''   Attorneys for the irrigators convinced Yule that top agency officials did not give the permits the individual analysis required by the Legislature.   ``The people of Washington did not say, 'We crown Mr. Barwin the king to determine what flows are going to be,''' Buchal said.   ``What we find especially appalling is that they didn't really have any evidence at all.''


WATER IN THE BANK, Who owns the water?  --  Feb 1 2002, Tidepool, by Ed Hunt.  ( Thanks Alice Smith )

Under a new federal plan issued this week, Klamath Basin farmers would get plenty of water through the next decade, but they could voluntarily sell water back to the the federal government using a "water bank" set up for endangered fish and wildlife.   Interestingly, the new plan seems to philosophically accede the contention by the farmers that they have a property "right" to the irrigation water.   The farmers have brought suit against the federal government saying that denying them irrigation water was a constitutional "takings" of private property.   Such a right to water has been established in court, but only in a case where water allocations were much more carefully spelled out.   However, the bottom line of the new federal plan seems to concur with what the farmers are arguing in court -- that the water belongs to the irrigators.   If the federal government wants it for fish, it will have to buy it.   Environmentalists, fishermen and tribes in the area say that the new plan "turns back the clock" giving farmers first priority for the water. That's the same strategy that lead to fish and wildlife declines in the first place. Buying water back won't help water quality, they say.    "In many ways, this proposal is more openly anti-tribal and anti-environmental than previous Reclamation policies," Allen Foreman, chairman of the Klamath Tribe, told the Oregonian.   "The new program actually has the nerve to propose that for tribal water to stay in Upper Klamath Lake to protect tribal fisheries, the U.S. government would have to buy it from Klamath irrigators."    The draft biological assessment from the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation admits that diverting water to farmers would likely hurt coho salmon and other threatened fish -- so it will still have to be reviewed by the US Fish and Wildlife Service and National Marine Fisheries Service.

Private water meetings continue  -- Jan 30 2002, Tri Cities Herald, by Chris Mulick.
Precious little consensus has been reached during water policy negotiations in the first two weeks of the 2002 legislative session. Negotiators have continued to meet privately since the session commenced Jan. 14, and more talks are scheduled this week.  But so far, lawmakers have failed to introduce a bill, only releasing drafts designed to stimulate stakeholder reaction. Nobody, not even the negotiators themselves, have liked what they've seen.  "They're not getting very far," said Gary Chandler, who last year was the point man on water issues for the House Republican Caucus but now leads the lobbying team for the Association of Washington Business.    As demanded by Gov. Gary Locke, four issues are being simultaneously negotiated by all four legislative caucuses:

-- Negotiators want to reform Washington's "use it or lose it" water laws to provide more incentive for conservation.

-- Local governments want more certainty over water supplies to meet growth.

-- Environmentalists want assurances of adequate stream flows to aid fish.

-- Agriculture and other interests want money to pay for new storage projects and replacing aging waterworks systems.

The hang-up of all hang-ups continues to be deciding what kinds of incentives should be used to encourage water users to give up some of their water, at least temporarily, for fish.  Granger Rep. Bruce Chandler, the Republicans' point-man in the House, is wary of reliance on regulatory processes that strong-arm users into giving up their water.    "They have to be incentives and not a gun to the head," he said.  Olympia Sen. Karen Fraser, the Democrats' top negotiator in the Senate, said a final resolution probably will have to include a combination of "sticks and carrots."  "When it comes to the environment, it usually does," said Fraser.  "Most of the sticks are in current law."    The incentives, as she sees them, could be the simple removal of regulatory barriers to allow water users to make contributions to increase stream flows.  Water users want more emphasis put on developing a free market system that would promote the buying and selling of water at an agreeable price.  But whatever mechanisms are chosen, they will have to guarantee flow targets will be met or there may be no bill this year.  Without such assurances, setting flow targets is meaningless, said Karen Allston, director of the Center for Environmental Law and Policy.    If agreement can be reached on the stream flow issue, most believe everything else will fall into place.  "Once you do that, it's easy to do a lot of other things," Fraser said.  But no one has been willing to concede any ground so far.   And though the session is only in its third week, time already appears to be running out.  Talks among chief negotiators, which actually began in September, have been held exclusively in closed-door sessions, and nothing has been brought before the full water committees in either house.  "We've got to get our act together," said Rep. Kelli Linville, a Bellingham Democrat and chairwoman of the House Agriculture and Ecology Committee.  Bruce Chandler said he's been frustrated by some stakeholder groups whose positions seem to built on quicksand.  "Everything has been so tentative," he said.  Jim Waldo, who heads Locke's executive water policy team, has managed to maintain a sunny disposition throughout slowing negotiations.   But though there is some dissenting opinion, most agree negotiators and stakeholders should stay the course, together hammering out all four issues at once.  "The challenge is to balance all this," Fraser said. "Each component of the bill is the equivalent of a huge, complex bill."


Klamath plan backs irrigation  --   Jan 29 2002, Oregonian, by Michael Milstein.
Klamath Basin farmers would get nearly a full supply of irrigation water through the next decade under a proposal unveiled Monday by the Bush administration, but they could voluntarily sell water back to the government through a "water bank" set up to help protected fish. The draft U.S. Bureau of Reclamation plan gives farmers a leg up in the heated contest for water in the arid basin. But top officials cautioned Monday that it is merely a first step toward divvying water among farmers, wildlife and tribes in coming years.   "What it means is the Department of Interior is working as hard as it can to deliver water to farmers, while also meeting our obligations to the tribes" and the Endangered Species Act, said Bennett Raley, assistant secretary of interior. "We're doing everything we can, but we're going to follow the law."  Because the plan -- called a biological assessment -- admits that diverting water to farms probably would harm endangered suckers in Upper Klamath Lake and threatened coho salmon in the Klamath River, it faces review by federal biologists at the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and National Marine Fisheries Service.   Biologists found in a similar review last year that the imperiled fish needed more water to make it through last summer's drought. That prompted severe cutbacks in irrigation deliveries and an emotional summer of protests in the Klamath Basin.   But the mountains ringing the basin hold far more snow now than they did last year, and the Bush administration has had a full year to review its options for calming the Klamath Basin's water struggles.   Farmers had hoped the administration would find room to provide reliable irrigation water even with the demands of the Endangered Species Act. They were among many interests in the basin briefed Monday in Klamath Falls by Raley and Reclamation Commissioner John Keys.  "It seems like they have spent a long time on this, so we are hopeful it will be workable," said Dan Keppen of the Klamath Water Users Association. "We just don't want to see a repeat of last year -- that's the bottom line."   Turning back the clock But while farmers greeted the plan warmly, Klamath Basin tribes and conservation groups complained that it turns back the clock.   By giving farms first priority for water, they said, the plan embraces the same strategy that led to the decline of waterfowl and the now-endangered fish that Native Americans once depended on for food.   Buying some water back from farmers through the proposed "water bank" will not restore an ecosystem beset by declining water quality, they said.  "In many ways, this proposal is more openly anti-tribal and anti-environmental than previous Reclamation policies," said Allen Foreman, chairman of the Klamath Tribe. "The new program actually has the nerve to propose that for tribal water to stay in Upper Klamath Lake to protect tribal fisheries, the U.S. government would have to buy it from Klamath irrigators." They said the proposal clearly signals the intention of the Bush administration to satisfy the needs of farmers before fulfilling the demands of the Endangered Species Act.  "They're basically acknowledging that their plan does not meet the needs of fish," said Reed Benson, executive director of WaterWatch of Oregon. "But I think they've decided they want to be on the side of farmers, and if the fish don't get what they need, that's the fishes' problem."  WaterWatch was among an alliance of conservation and fishermen's groups that said last week they would sue if federal agencies fail to draw up a Klamath water plan that protected fish.   Based on peak years The plan released Monday proposes to provide water to farmers at the same level as federal water managers did from 1961 to 1997, the years when the Klamath Reclamation Project reached its peak water deliveries.   Doing so would drop Upper Klamath Lake during the summer, putting it as much as 3 feet below the levels biologists have mandated for fish and below its historic levels, the plan says.   That would leave less habitat for suckers and would lead to warmer and shallower water, making algae-caused fish kills more common and damaging, it says. Sending water to farms also would harm coho salmon by leaving less habitat for young fish downstream in the Klamath River, the plan says.  It offers a series of suggestions for reducing the harm to fish that could be adopted into a final operations plan for the basin's intricate network of dams and canals.   They include leasing water from willing farmers to devote to fish needs; encouraging farmers to irrigate more in winter to reduce the needs of crops during the basin's dry summers; and installing long-proposed fish screens to keep protected fish from getting sucked into irrigation canals.  It also proposes pursuing restoration of wetlands that naturally filter water entering the region's lakes and rivers.   Some had hoped the Bush administration would advance a broader plan to bring the many demands for water in the basin more in line with the limited amount available, especially in drought years.   Senators' reactions Sen. Gordon Smith, R-Ore., was still reviewing the proposal Monday. Rep Greg Walden, R-Ore., who has joined Smith to advocate relief for the basin's farmers, said the 10-year span of the new plan should give federal agencies more flexibility in managing water.   A spokesman for Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., said the senator would continue pushing a five-year, $175 million plan to create a Klamath Basin task force that would address the basin's problems.   "I'm not sure that anybody is going to be happy about this assessment," said Josh Kardon, Wyden's chief of staff. "The farmers get government handouts instead of certainty; the tribes and the environmentalists may feel like an afterthought."   The biological assessment was scheduled be available today on the Web at


Acting BPA chierf gets not to take reins  --  Jan 25 2002, Oregonian by Jonathan Brinckman.
Steve Wright was named administrator of the Bonneville Power Administration on Thursday, becoming the 13th head of the federal agency that distributes nearly half of the Northwest's electricity.   The position usually goes to a person chosen by the president's party, in this case the Republicans, but Wright, a 21-year BPA veteran, was named interim director by the Clinton administration and has the support of Republicans and Democrats.  Energy Secretary Spencer Abraham announced the appointment on Thursday.   Wright, 44, was deputy to the previous BPA administrator, Judi Johansen. He has been acting head of the BPA since late 2000, when Johansen resigned to take a position at PacifiCorp, the Portland-based private utility.   After guiding the agency through the last year's drought and a West Coast power crisis, he was endorsed by all the U.S. senators from the Northwest.   "Steve Wright's leadership at the BPA during this past year has been impressive, and he has earned the respect of this administration," said Sen. Larry Craig, R-Idaho, the region's senior Republican senator.   Wright took two key actions last year: He led a drive to cut demand for BPA power by 10 percent. That allowed the agency to meet its power supply obligations without buying large amounts of electricity on an expensive wholesale market. He directed that the amount of water spilled over federal dams on the Columbia River be sharply reduced, which hurt salmon but increased electricity generation. Reducing spill forces more young migrating salmon through the dams' turbines, and that causes increased death rates.   At the time, conservationists and tribal officials sharply criticized the spill decision. Still, many conservationists said Thursday that they support Wright, mainly because of his strong record on conservation.  Tribes have remained critical of Wright, however, and a tribal official said Thursday that the agency is spending too little on salmon recovery. "Wright's turning BPA into a salmon-recovery skinflint," said Don Sampson, executive director of the Columbia River Inter-Tribal Fish Commission.   Officials of publicly owned and investor-owned utilities said they were thrilled by Wright's appointment.   "The administration is appointing someone who has already proven to be a great asset to the region," said Patrick Reiten, a vice president of the Pacific Northwest Generating Cooperative, which manages power supply needs of 15 electric cooperatives.   Wright started at the BPA in 1981, shortly after receiving his master's in public affairs from the University of Oregon.   He worked in the agency's energy conservation office in Portland, then directed its California and Washington, D.C., offices. He became deputy administrator in 2000 and shortly afterward was appointed acting administrator.   As administrator, he will be paid $138,200 a year.   "I'm committed to operating BPA as a sound business enterprise, but one whose mission starts with meeting our responsibilities to serve the public," Wright said Thursday. "That means striving for strong environmental stewardship, low rates, reliable service and being open to the public's ideas."   Wright and his wife, Kathleen, have three children and live in Portland.

Steelhead spawning in urban streams  -- Jan 22 2002, Seattle P-I.
Retired biologist John Shully regularly walks the banks of frigid Ashland Creek looking for signs of rare summer steelhead that are now spawning in urban creeks throughout Jackson County.  These close cousins of salmon first swam into the upper Rogue River during the hottest days of summer.   They lingered until the coldest days of winter to reproduce in tributary creeks ranging from the wilds of the woods to the hippest parts of downtown Ashland.  Most people are oblivious to the secretive steelhead.  "I point them out to people, and they're shocked," Shully said. "Most people have never seen fish in Ashland Creek, let alone big, gorgeous ones.  "But they're here. Oh, man, are they here."  Wild steelhead are a coastwide phenomenon from Northern California well into Alaska, but most of the rivers welcome home their fish in winter.   The Rogue and Umpqua basins are two of only a handful of coastal streams with a separate run of steelhead that migrate in the summer.  The summer steelhead then stick around through fall before they spawn in the winter, with mid- to late-January the peak time.  The wild steelhead are now in some of the small backyard tributary streams of Central Point, Eagle Point and Shady Cove, Ore., as well as the waters of Wagner Creek near Talent, Ore., and the backwoods of Trail, Ore.  But perhaps some of the most unusual of these winter haunts are the streams that meander through east Medford, Ore.'s dense housing developments.  These wild steelhead, ranging from barely 16 ounces to more than 10 pounds, dart into the tributaries during high-water periods that come during and after rainstorms, said fish biologist Mike Evenson of the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife.  They often migrate, then spawn amid as much streamside cover as they can and return back downstream even before the high waters subside so they often go unnoticed.   It's a far different scenario when large fall chinook salmon head up Bear Creek and spawn along downtown Medford, where residents easily can see them from the Main Street bridge.  "The summer steelhead are hard to see when they're spawning, even if you're looking for them," Evenson said.   "There could be a whole bunch behind someone's house, and they would never know."  That relative obscurity is one of the many qualities that inspires Shully to keep such close tabs on them.  "These fish are my favorite, because they are so mysterious," Shully said.   "They're really neat fish."


Tainted data  -- A look at how environmental agencies work and how environmental issues are covered in most of the mainstream media  --  Jan 19 2002, USNEWS, by Michael Barone.
On Dec. 17, 2001, Audrey Hudson of the Washington Times reported that three U.S. Forest Service officials, two U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service officials, and two employees of the Washington State Department of Fish and Wildlife had planted samples of Canadian lynx hair on rubbing posts and mailed samples of the hair in to laboratories for testing. The agencies are conducting a yearslong survey of the Gifford Pinchot and Wenatchee national forests to see if the Canadian lynx, declared a threatened species by the Fish and Wildlife Service, is found there. The lynx hair placed on rubbing posts and sent into laboratories actually came from captive animals.   A flurry of reports followed. Some papers, like the Seattle Times, focused on the mailing of the lynx hair to the laboratories and let the government employees elaborate their excuse–that they were just making a blind test of the laboratories' ability to identify lynx hair. There were reports that one or more of the employees notified their supervisors of what they were doing or kept personal notes saying that the lynx hair was obtained from captive animals.   But everyone agrees that sending in the samples, with tags indicating where they were allegedly found in the wild and no indication they were obtained from captive animals, is not allowed under the survey procedures.   Six of the employees were barred from surveying the area, and one retired.   The names of the federal employees have not been revealed to protect their privacy.   Precisely what happened is not entirely clear. Even so, the story tells us a lot about how government environmental protection agencies work and how environmental issues are covered in most of the mainstream media.   It tells us, first of all, that there are people in environmental agencies who are willing to lie and cheat in order to produce evidence that can be used to restrict human use of the environment. And it tells us something about the agency culture. For this was not just individual lying and cheating. There was more than one individual in each of these agencies who did the same thing, and it seems very unlikely that they all came up with this idea on their own. And that means that people willing to lie and cheat thought that there was a significant likelihood that others in their agency would be willing to lie and cheat, and that it was very unlikely that others in the agency would blow the whistle on them.   The cause of restricting human use of the natural environment is so important, so worthy, so good, that it justifies such behavior.   Lying and cheating, evidently, is part of the culture of these agencies.   The heads of the agencies would certainly like us to think lying and cheating is uncharacteristic.   But they admit that the credibility of their agencies is placed in doubt by these incidents. "I spent many years training to become a biologist and consider this a slap in the face to myself and other biologists," Jeffrey Koenings, director of the Washington State department, told the Duluth News-Tribune.   "Our integrity and professionalism is now being questioned because of the arrogant actions of a few."   Barbara Weber, a U.S. Forest Service official in Washington State, told the Seattle Times, "It affects the reputation of us as an agency overall because we say we are a science-based organization.   If people are tainting data and planting data, that speaks to the integrity and credibility of the agency as a whole and any policy we make with that data."


The story about the lynx hair fakery was broken in the conservative-leaning Washington Times, and stories on the subject appeared in the Seattle Times, Seattle Post-Intelligencer, the Spokesman-Review in Spokane, Wash., the Columbian in Vancouver, Wash., and the Christian Science Monitor.   A Nexis search turned up nothing on the subject in the New York Times or the Washington Post. Perhaps that's not surprising, but the stories–casting grave doubt on the credibility of government environmental restriction agencies–don't fit the template of recent Times and Post stories on the environment.   Look at a January 13 Times news story, on the Bush administration's environmental record.   As Andrew Sullivan notes in his invaluable, this story "assumes several things: (a) that the conventional left-liberal approach to environmental policy is correct; (b) that there is no reason for the Bush administration to pursue a marginally different environmental agenda than Clinton, except to cater to business interests; and (c) that, if the administration does do some pro-environmental things, it cannot possibly do them except out of naked political calculus, rather than the merits of the case." Absent from the article is any substantive argument made in behalf of any Bush policy. Present in good number are characterizations by so-called environmental groups–a more accurate, value-free description is environmental restriction advocates.   Or consider a January 14 Washington Post story on Interior Secretary Gale Norton's refusal to relay the Fish and Wildlife Service's criticism of an Army Corps of Engineers proposal.   The lead paragraphs of the story quote copiously from Fish and Wildlife's statement.   It quotes later environmental restriction advocates.   Only far down in the text is the Army Corps allowed to provide, briefly, the rationale for its position, and Secretary Norton's spokesman to explain her approach. To the writer's credit, Fish and Wildlife is characterized as "an agency dominated by biologists who tend to tilt green on environmental issues."   The writer might have added, if he had kept up with the Washington Times, the Christian Science Monitor, and the regional papers covering the faked lynx hair story, that it is an agency at least some of whose employees lied and cheated by forwarding evidence that could be used to impose environmental restrictions.  An agency with, we have some reason to believe, an institutional culture that tolerates lying and cheating if it helps impose environmental restriction.  An agency that, until it sharply disciplines the employees who lied and faked data, does not seem greatly to mind such behavior.   Liberal national media are quite ready to make it clear when there is reason to doubt the credibility of agencies (like the Army Corps) opposing environmental restrictions.   But they seem to regard environmental restrictionists, whether in government agencies or in organizations financed by direct-mail appeals, as people acting totally out of altruistic motives whose positions are the only ones people concerned with the environment could take.   As for the rest of us, we are free to remain skeptical when the Fish and Wildlife Service, the Forest Service, or the Washington State Department of Fish and Wildlife tells us something is so.


Leery of grizzle tests, legislator demands review of all endangered-species studies  -- Jan 10 2002, Seattle Times.  ( Thanks Alice Smith )State Rep. Bob Sump is accusing wildlife officials of a coverup in a study to determine whether grizzly bears exist in northeastern Washington.  Sump, R-Republic, has called for a review of all state studies involving threatened and endangered species. Sump grew suspicious of a request by a state biologist to get grizzly-bear hairs from a Colville taxidermist and linked it to recent reports of problems in lynx studies.   A state Department of Fish and Wildlife official said there was no impropriety.   The grizzly sample was sought as part of a planned check of laboratory results, said Steve Pozzanghera, an assistant deputy director of the department.   An official with Boise Cascade, which owns much of the land where the bear test was conducted, also confirmed the planned blind testing.   Blind samples are known samples that are submitted to a lab to determine the accuracy of its tests.   The state agency and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and U.S. Forest Service are being investigated by the inspector general of the U.S. Department of the Interior after seven state and federal biologists acknowledged sending falsely marked hair samples for DNA testing during a nationwide lynx survey.   The scientists have said they were testing the accuracy of the DNA testing.   Unlike the lynx survey, Pozzanghera said, the use of blind samples was part of the grizzly study.   Sump wants to add the grizzly-bear survey to a list of studies that should be investigated. He said taxidermist Jim Gintz was preparing a bear rug for a resident who legally shot the animal in Alaska when he was approached by a state biologist.   Gintz refused a request to give hair samples to the biologist, Sump said.   When the taxidermist declined, the biologist got samples instead from a tanned hide at a sporting-goods store, as well as from live grizzlies in British Columbia, he said.   The samples were sent for DNA testing along with hair samples collected in the field.   Pozzanghera said the study was conducted in an area known as the Wedge, just east of Colville, on land owned largely by Boise Cascade, to determine whether it contained grizzly bears.   Grizzlies are known to frequent an area just across the Canadian border and are believed to cross into the U.S. there, he said.   None of the samples from the field tested positive for grizzlies, Pozzanghera said.   Steve Tveit, Boise Cascade's timberlands manager for the Washington region, confirmed his company knew about the blind samples and agreed the samples should be part of the study.   Sump doesn't buy that explanation. "You tell me why a Fish and Wildlife agent has got to go and beg for hair to send in for a blind sample when they could have picked up the phone and gotten samples from any number of sources," he said.


Greens & other true believers lie because they think they are morally superior to you and I   --  Jan 7 2002, Enter Stage Right - A Journal of Modern Conservation, by Alan Caruba. ( Thanks Rex Lyle )
Dennis T. Avery, a senior fellow for the Hudson Institute and a former senior policy analyst for the US Department of State, recently took note of sanctions applied to Steven R. Arnold, a former researcher at the Tulane University Center for Bioenvironmental Research.   The Federal Office of Research Integrity found that Arnold had "committed scientific misconduct by intentionally falsifying the research results published in the Journal Science and by providing falsified and fabricated materials to investigating officials."   His punishment?   He will be unable to receive federal research funding for five years.   Avery called it "one of the most dramatic scientific frauds of modern times," noting that the Tulane Center said it found that various pesticides, safe when tested individually, were 1,000 times more dangerous when tested together.   It raised the spector of modern agriculture's chemicals undermining the health of the human population and the natural ecology through a blind spot in our regulatory testing." And it was a lie.    This is part of the campaign of endless lies designed to secure the ban of every single pesticide and herbicide that protects human health against insect and rodent predators, and the vast food crops produced by American farmers. In 1996 a book was published, "Our Stolen Future: Are We Threatening Our Fertility, Intelligence and Survival? - A Scientific Detective Story." Written by Theo Colbert, even the author her book admitted it was based on mere suspicions.   It has been cited, however, as proof of yet another bogus threat conjured up by environmentalists. "  The book speculated that man-made chemicals were causing ailments ranging from cancer to attention deficit disorder by disrupting our endocrine systems," noted Avery.   The book's forward was written by then Vice President Al Gore. When Arnold's falsified research was published in 1996, Carol Browner, the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, said, "The new study is the strongest evidence to date that combinations of estrogenic materials may be potent enough to significantly increase the risk of breast cancer, prostate cancer, birth defects and other major health concerns."   As we now know, there is no such evidence, except that purposely created to further the goal of the environmental movement to end the use of pesticides and herbicides.   Beginning with Rachel Carson's bogus and discredited "science" in "Silent Spring", this attack on beneficial chemicals has never ceased.  In a similar fashion, Michael Bellesile's book, "Arming America" was seized upon by gun-control advocates as having demolished "the myth" that individuals have the right to gun ownership.   The book asserted that private gun ownership was uncommon in early America.   It turns out that the author deliberately misinterpreted Colonial documents, misquoted early federal laws, distorted historical accounts, and cited San Francisco records that experts agree were destroyed in the 1906 earthquake.  The willingness to lie regarding environmental issues was revealed in December when it was found that federal and state wildlife biologists had planted false evidence of a rare cat species in two national forests, the Gifford Pinchot National Forest and Wenatchee National Forest in Washington State.   This is the same forest area that the Earth Liberation Front has recently boasted of "spiking" trees in order to do injury to lumberjacks culling trees for purposes of forest management.   The cascade of lies about everything environmental should, by now, have convinced the public that US government officials responsible for setting national policies and environmental groups seeking to determine what those policies should be cannot be trusted.   The public, however, has rarely paid any attention to anything than the lies published by a compliant and complacent mainstream media that has fully adopted the goals of the environmental and animal rights movements.  The costs of these policies are astronomical.   Billions of dollars are wasted on wasteful programs said to "protect" the environment.   Billions of dollars are going to be allocated to States and environmental groups to put more and more land aside from any use. Late on the evening of December 20th, the Senate, without any public debate or a recall vote, passed S-990, The American Wildlife Enhancement Act of 2001. We will never know who voted for this act. This was the same tactic used to pass the UN Convention on Desertification. Now $600 million in taxpayer dollars will be given out for "the acquisition of an area of land or water that is suitable or capable of being made suitable for feeding, resting or breeding by wildlife." Translation: Any property can be designated for virtual seizure. One can only pray the President will veto this full-scale attack on property rights in America.  This is how environmental groups achieve their goals. They are goals based in a consuming hatred of humankind and its need for food  and shelter. They are goals that are intended to undermine and destroy America's economic power, based on access to its vast natural resources. They are goals intended to strip Americans of the most fundamental right of self-defense. They are the goals of those who believe they are morally superior to you and I, and therefore have the right to subvert the truth to achieve total control over our lives and our nation.  While Americans look to the Middle East and elsewhere, fearful of terrorist organizations intent on harming our lives and our society, they continue to ignore the internal enemies who, by stealth and deception, work to destroy the progress of real science that protects and extends our lives, and to undermine our most fundamental Constitutional protections.  If we lose this struggle, it will be because of our inertia and indifference.   The environmentalists, animal rights, and gun control advocates are counting on that.   In the political year ahead, their closest allies will be the Democratic Party.

Tom Flint resides in Ephrata WA and is the editor for Save Our Dams.

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