Fighting the proposed Electronic Warfare Range? Action needed by Friday May 8


News from the Protect Olympic Peninsula people:

The US Forest Service is asking for public input regarding the management of Olympic National Forest. They want to know:

What does the public want the Forest Service to consider as they develop their forest management plan? How does the public want to be engaged with the science that will inform their revisions? How should the pubic be engaged during this revision process?

Consider including some of the “POTENT POINTS” below in your comments. Comments need to be mailed and postmarked by Friday, May 8th. Send to:

Attention: Listening Session Comments

Olympic National Forest

1835 Black Lake Blvd SW

Olympia, WA 98512

POTENT POINTS

1.The public wants the management of our National Forests to be based on solid science, not politics. Comprehensive, unbiased, current scientific data should be the foundation for all management decisions. This data, in an easily understandable format, should be accessible to the public.

2.The Navy’s application for a permit to use the Olympic National Forest for an Electronic Warfare Range must be denied until unbiased, solid scientific data can support their claim that the Range will have “No Significant Impact”.

NOISE: No sound studies have been done of actual noise levels of trios of Growler jets practicing for 8-12 hours a day directly above Endangered Species Habitat.

The stress of these extreme levels of noise could push these species to extinction.

ECONOMICS: Socio-economic repercussions of the Navy’s plans on local communities have not been analyzed. The warjets aim to practice directly over Olympic National Park, the region’s main tourist attraction. Jet noise and fear of Electromagnetic Radiation will erode tourism drastically. A quiet atmosphere —free from the clamor of man-made noise — is central to “the wilderness experience” that is desired by the majority of visitors to this region. Managers of Olympic National Forest need to recognize that the economic stability of the small communities on the Peninsula has shifted from timber harvesting and forest products to outdoor recreation and tourism. Visitation to Olympic National Park grew over 10% last year, flushing the local economies with millions of tourist dollars. See:

http://www.wta.org/signpost/new-study-the-economic-benefits-of-our-adventures-outdoors

INCREASED FIRE RISK: The risk of fires ignited by jet crashes, transmitter vehicle sparks, operators’ cigarettes, and misdirected electromagnetic beams hitting dry vegetation must be thoroughly analyzed. With drought conditions increasing every year, crashes occuring in remote, roadless areas could create runaway fires. Growlers fuel tanks would explode, dumping thousands of gallons of highly toxic fuel into a pristine ecosystem. The probabilities and the consequences of these inevitable events should be rigorously and scientifically evaluated BEFORE any permit is granted to the Navy for their Warfare Range. The enormous cost of these fires to the Forest Service, the communities here, and the wildlife must be evaluated.

RADIATION HARM:  Subjecting sensitive species such as butterflies, bees, amphibians, birds and insects, as well as children and pregnant women, to this powerful and potentially harmful technology without adequate scientific studies is unacceptable. The public wants to see comprehensive, current, peer-reviewed scientific data that shows that the Growlers’ Electromagnetic Radiation is harmless to humans and wildlife BEFORE a permit is granted. See:

http://www.truth-out.org/news/item/28009-documents-show-navy-s-electromagnetic-warfare-training-would-harm-humans-and-wildlife

3.STRENGTHEN THE NW FOREST PLAN. We must NOT revert to a “forest-by-forest” management plan. Strong protection is needed for our ancient groves, endangered species, and watersheds.

  1. Revamp the Forest Service’s flawed public comment process. Thousands of citizens voiced objections to the Electronic Warfare Range. Many expressed sentiments that cannot be “quantified”—such as valuing the peace and silence they experience in the wilderness. They were informed that such objections would carry no weight in the Forest Service’s decision because their comments were not considered “substantive”.

This disregard of citizen’s input makes the Forest Services’ mission statement of “serving the people” and “encouraging public participation” a farce. We want our voices to be heard, and we want our opinions to carry weight.

Important: Keep a copy of your letter.

After sending a hard copy to the Forest Service (postmarked by May 8th) email a copy of your letter to Representative Derek Kilmer, Senators Murray and Cantwell, and Govenor Inslee.

To know more about the grassroots efforts to stop the Navy’s takeover of the Olympic Peninsula, see:

www.protectolympicpeninsula.org

5 Responses

  1. I went to the Olympia “listening” session, and it was very well attended. Many people from the North Olympic cities drove down as there is nothing scheduled closer. This one was specifically FOR the Olympic National Forest, and we got to talk directly with several of their employees, including Dean Millett, the designated person who is to be making the decision on the permit for the Navy to use the National Forest roads for their electromagnetic emitter truck locations.

  2. In 2009, PBS aired a Ken Burns doc series called “The National Parks: America’s Best Idea”, which is responsible for at least 10 million people visiting the National Parks/Forests and appreciating them.
    Wouldn’t it be great to have Ken Burns speak out on our behalf? His company, Florentine Films, is in Walpole, New Hampshire. He comes to Seattle often.
    Despite his corporate sponsorship, due to the Republicans continually cutting funding to the Corp for Public Broadcasting (Burns’ new sponsor Siemens had a factory inside Auschwitz for example), it’s worth a try.
    I did, and Ken asked for my understanding as to why he couldn’t comment without explaining further.
    If Ken feels his hands are tied due to his corporate sponsors, I think he’s in a terrible position and needs OUR support. You can reach Ken via Chris Darling at Florentine Films.

    cdarling@florentinefilms.com

    I think “celebrities” can bring national/global attention to this, and remind people we need to protect these areas and about the kicked up militarization across the US. I’ve been forwarding articles etc to him anyway…
    Helene Harrison

  3. I expect the Forest Service to do the job they are designed to do…protect our forest and park lands and sensitive eco-systems…so that they thrive and stay healthy for the animals that live there and the public that partake in the beauty and care of their public space. This means not allowing outside industry to use or have a presence…this includes the Navy to have electromagnetic warfare.
    I have a strong sense that our Forest Service departments are being targeted by oil and gas industry and defense contracts to use those lands for their own gains…when these lands are to be protected for the environment and the publics enjoyment with rules and regulations to be safe and care for. Just do the job your designed to do!

  4. I see live links are not allowed. Google: Watch moviegoers react to cell phone.

  5. IMO the noise intrusion into the lives of wildlife on an almost constant daylight bases is more than enough to cancel this atrocity. Wild life of all types rely on their own vocalizations to find mates and noise intrusion has been shown to silence vocalizations for 15 minutes, or more in actual wildlife setting recordings* taken around the world. Wildlife also rely on hearing the sounds of predators for their escape and feeding strategies. (Note: ~15 minutes is the estimated interval between flights.)

    Case in point. I was recently pumping gas at the COSTCO in Sequim when a low flying “Growler” flew over head. Having recently read the book* I took the opportunity to look at the other “pumpers” and to the person all looked up as I am sure I would have as well in regular circumstances. Pumping GAS mind you. Think how a cell phone ring affects your concentration. Even another’s phone.

    * The Great Animal Orchestra. Bernie Krause

    Or this demonstration with movie goers.

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