Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Support for Black Lake Ranch Land Swap

Photo courtesy of Spokesman Review

There is an important public for private land swap that needs your comments, now.

As you can read more here in the Spokesman Review's front page article,  there is a critical land swap being proposed that would pay high social and environmental dividends on Black Lake and the Coeur d'Alene River in North Idaho.

Current landowners of the former Marshall Chesrown's horse ranch and state officials are ready to make a land swap that would restore critical wetlands along the Coeur d'Alene river and stop the pumping of toxic water into Black Lake, one of the chain lakes in the Coeur d'Alene system

For decades, pumps have drained the natural wetlands and in turn put the waste water into Black Lake.  Ag waste, animal waste and the lingering effects of mine waste make their way daily into Black Lake causing significant environmental damage.

Residents of Black Lake experience consistent toxic Blue Green Algae blooms.  Kids under 7 are not advised to swim in the lake.  Dead and tumor filled fish are regular occurrences, as are dead tundra swans that use the lake in their annual migration routes

It doesnt stop with Black Lake.  As the saying goes, the SH*T always rolls down hill.  The contaminated water flows through the chain lake system, into the river and eventually into the crown jewel of North Idaho, Lake Coeur d'Alene

photo courtesy of Spokesman Review

This land swap is a no brainer.  The timbered land near St. Maries that it's going to be swapped for is likely to be sold by the state eventually as excess land disposal (aka, new private owners anyways)

Improved water quality is just the start of the list of benefits that would occur with this land swap.   Public health, vital waterfowl habitat, fish health and survival, sportsman's access, public land access, and so many more reasons.

The tribes are in favor.  The EPA is in favor.  Most parties involved are very much in favor

Who's not..?  A vocal minority in the area fears the loss of hunting access or potential poor land management by the new owners.

Well guess who's probably not going to let them hunt in the future.  Anyone who buys the land, logs it and restricts access.  Land swap aside, the excess land will likely be moved off the public register.

So why not be a part of restoring critical habitat, access and reduce pollution in one fell swoop?

Public comments are due by March 28th.  Please check out this web site for great information and directions on how you can help.  There's links to send comments, links to all pertinent articles and further information as to why this land swap is good, good, good.

Save CDA Waterways

No comments:

Post a Comment