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Monday, October 14, 2019  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Down To Earth

Local story roundup + Lands Council letter

Lazy north Idahoans up in arms over potential drive-through ban in Sandpoint – but will they actually get off the couch to submit comments before the city council. (we had to)  A proposal to prohibit drive-through services just recently passed the city's planning and zoning commission and goes before the city council in May - and locals aren't happy.  The ban is part of Sandpoint’s attempt to make their city more attractive and more walkable, but DTE applauds the attempt as one small step at curbing carbon emissions. Last summer, The Star in Toronto told of a man on a personal mission against drive-throughs because of their contribution to increased carbon emissions – by his calculation – some 118 tons of carbon dioxide and other pollutants annually for this city’s 29 drive-throughs.

Carl Spackler reporting for duty.  The Spokane Parks Department has a ground squirrel problem at the Finch Arboretum, and they're calling in the big guns - more like the big explosion.  In what is being called the most humane way to take care of the infestation, the Parks department will use Rodenator Pro - essentially a giant underground shock wave that kills the pests and collapses their tunnels (burying alive those that don't die instantly from the shock wave).  But is it the most humane way?  Not according to a Spokesman-Review story commenter who left the link to a Colorado-based company that would suck the rodents out of the ground with a giant vacuum and let them free in the wild.  That sounds better than the shock and awe treatment.  Anyone else? 

Eastern Washington water stories hit The New York Times.  Two seperate regional water-issue stories were published in The New York Time last week - Industrial farms could leave eastern Wash. with dry wells, and Wash.'s Yakima Basin storage project dies -- or does it?  In both of the stories, the work of the Center for Environmental Law and Policy is on full display.  The Center was founded in 1993 to serve as a voice for the public interest water resource management and preservation in Washington state.

A open letter from The Lands Council - DTE recommended

Help Spokane Be More Sustainable!

Dear Lands Council supporter,

I am asking you to spend a few moments to email members of the Spokane City Council and urge them approve the Sustainability Action Plan. It is important that you weigh in with your comments before Friday, April 24th!

Over the past year, The Lands Council and many others worked together to develop a Sustainability Action Plan that would help the City of Spokane address the urgent issues of climate change and energy security. As a member of the Sustainability Task Force I am proud to be associated with the Action Plan that we produced, which developed recommendations that are common sense, cost effective, and visionary. Now we need to ensure that the Action Plan moves forward and an important step is the approval of City Council.

Please email members of the City Council and show your support for the Sustainability Action Plan, and for making our City more sustainable. We need to weigh in at this time to counter those opposed to change and those who view sustainability as a conspiracy. You can view the Action Plan at

Please take action now! Comments due Friday, April 24th 2009.

Click here for more information on how to submit comments.

The City Council will meet on Monday, April 27th to make its decision.

Thank you very much for taking action!

Mike Petersen, Executive Director The Lands Council

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Down To Earth

The DTE blog is committed to reporting and sharing environmental news and sustainability information from across the Inland Northwest.