For Love, Not Money
(page 3 of 5)
Photography: Courtesy of Citizens for Smart Growth and Kris Olenick, Yellowstone to Yukon and Gary Glass
Living in a place like ours, it is not hard to embrace the Native American theology that all humans have an animal spirit within. It’s why the wolf’s cry sends shivers to our souls, and the change of seasons drives us wordlessly through the rituals required to prepare for each one. There are people more connected than we who take the time to make sure the eagle flies, the groundhog sees a shadow and the food we eat and water we drink nourish us to the strength required to appreciate it all. These are a few of them.
Snake River Alliance
Snake River Alliance was founded 30 years ago by a group of Idahoans who were concerned about the nuclear waste being pumped into the aquifer at the Idaho National Laboratory. Since then, they have defeated projects others thought impossible including: INL no longer injecting nuclear waste directly into the Snake River aquifer; beating back three nuclear weapons plants and a plutonium incinerator; ensuring high-level waste is no longer abandoned in underground tanks, unlined pits and trenches; and working to cancel the 700-ton Divine Strake Bomb Test. The guiding philosophy is simple: The state of Idaho must protect the air, land and water from nuclear waste and promote clean and affordable sources of energy. The effort the Alliance makes, with Andrea Shipley serving as executive director and John Gifford as board president, is on behalf of all Idahoans, the state’s precious natural resources and wild places, and the health and well-being of the air, land and water across the globe. The majority of this organization’s resources go to fund experts to run programs in two distinct and vital programs: clean energy and nuclear watchdogs. Their mission is to conduct the research and educate the public on their findings and to aid in finding alternatives. This is a membership-based organization with volunteers providing much-needed support in the areas of promoting sustainable solutions to our energy crossroads. The Alliance’s position is that: “There is no solution to nuclear waste. The cost of renewable resources like wind, solar, geothermal, biomass, conservation, and energy efficiency are still proving to be the cheapest, fastest and safest way for us to reach energy independence.” For more information visit http://snakeriveralliance.org/.
Citizens For Smart Growth
By 2025, it is estimated that the Valley will grow by 12,000 residents. New residents will add about 5,000 homes and more than 9,000 vehicles to our roads. For more than a decade, Citizens for Smart Growth has been at the table when growth and development discussions take place so that Blaine County grows in a sustainable and equitable way. CSG was founded in 1997 to give local citizens a voice in development issues at a time when well-funded, big-time developers were, as CSG saw it, “outmanning and outmaneuvering local government.” The organization works to preserve Blaine County’s natural assets—rural charm, open space, air and water quality and wildlife habitat—while encouraging economic prosperity. The organization does this by evaluating development projects according to the 10 Smart Growth Principles and community values. CSG representatives then meet with developers to help mold projects into valuable community assets and mitigate potential problems, advise local government and report on pertinent issues to members and the general public. CSG also works to codify Smart Growth Principles into law and as a regional collaborator on various sustainability projects. CSG has worked with cities and the county to: protect our night sky and historic features; keep development off of critical lands; establish maximum retail building size in order to protect the small businesses we value; limit berm sizes along our roadways that block scenic views and increase wildlife fatalities; promote affordable housing and access to public lands and water. For more information call 208.788.8813 or visit www.citizensforsmartgrowth.org.