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Year-end Appeal

   ex•tir•pate verb
        1  root out and destroy completely
        2  Synonym: weed out, destroy, eradicate, stamp out, root out, wipe out, eliminate, suppress, crush

Dear Friends,

You and I know there are pivotal moments when we are challenged to step up and keep going. No matter how tired or discouraged, even when we cannot see clearly a path forward. Now is one of those times in ways you may not yet know about.

We are writing on behalf of the Olympic Forest Coalition to ask for your help. This month, after more than 10 years, the Washington State Department of Natural Resources issued two policy decisions that have the potential to drive Marbled Murrelets into extirpation in Washington, or to put us on a path toward a vibrant, sustainable habitat for the murrelets and other important indicator species in our forests. The two policies are the Long Term Conservation Strategy (to save endangered species) and the Sustainable Harvest Calculation (to set timber logging levels for the next decade). Both together will change the face of our environment for the foreseeable future in the beautiful stretch of forest along the coast—the Olympic Experimental State Forest. And it could mean that Marbled Murrelets become “extirpated”—a term used by scientists and policy makers to describe the elimination of species in our forests, but not yet across the world.

The Washington Dept. of Fish and Wildlife reports that we are losing Marbled Murrelets from Puget Sound and Washington coastal waters at an annual rate of -4.65%.

Added to this evolving policy is an urgent and critical problem: The U.S. Forest Service will issue a permit to allow the U.S. Navy to conduct military testing in the fragile habitats of Olympic forests, the Salish Sea, and the Pacific Coast Marine Sanctuary. Jets will be given a permit to fly training exercises 260 days per year, 16 hours per day, over Olympic forests and waters. National security must include securing our natural environment.

We have days to organize, educate and provide scientific, economic and policy direction to the newly elected Commissioner of Public Lands, the Board of Natural Resources and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service—to convince them to take a decision that will make state forest lands a safe place for endangered species, water and other natural resources, and livelihoods for our forest communities.

OFCO needs your financial help to ensure that the voices of environmental protection are organized, uplifted and heard in Olympia, and that we speak to decision-makers with good science and economics balancing the interests of vibrant ecosystems and communities. And, if necessary, we must have the resources to mount a legal challenge to state or federal agencies to enforce the Endangered Species Act for Marbled Murrelets, bull trout, and Northern Spotted Owls.

“The bell has rung. We have 90 days to save the Marbled Murrelets. After 30 years of work—it comes down to this.” ~Marcy Golde, OFCO Board Member

 

We are asking your help to raise $10,000 in support of this campaign. OFCO has a legal trust account of $10,000 to match your support of our Marbled Murrelet campaign.

Your contribution will directly support:

 

  • Reporting on science, policy options and action to ensure grassroots Peninsulans have the information to make informed decisions and to change decisions affecting our shared environment and communities.
  • Organizing members and supporters to engage federal and state agencies in charge of Olympic forests and waters in the January 2017 hearings, through the public comment and objection periods ending, respectively, in January and March 2017.
  • Analyzing and monitoring timber sales on public lands to ensure that they meet legal requirements and that logging doesn’t destroy the forests needed by endangered species
  • The last resort: Mounting a powerful legal challenge to stop the worst policy from going forward. OFCO is working with renowned Seattle law firm Ziontz Chestnut, representing tribes, environmental and public interest groups, and local businesses in Washington state for over 60 years.

We need you to do more than make a donation; we need you to lift up your voices, to attend the so-called Public Meetings in January, to write decision-makers in state and local offices, and to be ready to engage your elected officials between now and March. Sign up for OFCO action alerts by sending a request to info@olympicforest.org.

We are not alone in working to save the Marbled Murrelet and to stop the Navy. The Olympic Forest Coalition has strong allies—the Washington Forest Law Center and the Marbled Murrelet Survival Project and its members (Sierra Club, Audubon Society, Washington Environment Council and others). The West Coast Action Alliance, Olympic Park Associates, and National Park Conservation Association also engage in efforts to save the marine sanctuary, communities, and Olympic forests from excessive and unnecessary military training exercises.

It is not too late. Our dedicated scientist advocates assure us that we can protect the Marbled Murrelets in our state. Newly elected state officials with environmental values and track records will take office in January.

Please click here to print a donation form to send in with your check. If you prefer donating online, please visit olympicforest.org/join-us to contribute through our PayPal account.

Monthly giving, through your bank or PayPal, is an easy way to provide support and avoid renewal reminders, along with their postage and natural resource costs. If you’d like to learn more about giving monthly, please email info@olympicforest.org.

Season’s greetings, along with our thanks for your continued support and commitment to protecting endangered species, conservation, our forests and waters, and our collective power.

Connie Gallant                        Marcy J. Golde                            Patricia Jones                                                                             President                  Board/Murrelet Survival Project              Executive Director

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