Skykomish Scaremongering

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American Rivers, a national environmental group, has been drafted in the fight over growth management in Snohomish County, WA, where I live. Skykomish River is, according to their annual report, the fourth "most endangered river" in the United States.

It's a ridiculous claim on its face. The river is in great shape, one of the healthiest in the state, but they claim it is endangered because it is threatened by "runaway development," that "[w]ithout a strong plan to manage growth, runaway development will damage the health of the river and diminish the quality of life for watershed residents."

No one could disagree with this; but there is such a plan, and the state's Growth Management Act mandates such a plan. The state says that the county should expect 285,000 new residents in the next 20 years, and the county council is looking to direct 85 percent of new development over that period to urban areas, while carefully balancing other development with the obligation to protect resources like the Skykomish.

Let us be clear: the dangers to the "clear, clean water and the salmon, steelhead, and char that swim in it" are invented. Current law and practice and the proposed plans all protect these things. This American Rivers campaign is not about protecting the environment, it is about preventing new development.

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<pudge/*> (pronounced "PudgeGlob") is thousands of posts over many years by Pudge.

"It is the common fate of the indolent to see their rights become a prey to the active. The condition upon which God hath given liberty to man is eternal vigilance; which condition if he break, servitude is at once the consequence of his crime and the punishment of his guilt."

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This page contains a single entry by pudge published on April 15, 2005 8:47 AM.

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