Archive for October, 2013

Oct09

Capital Press: Conservation, irrigation goals of big state land buy

By Dan Wheat

October 4, 2013

CLE ELUM, Wash. — State agencies, environmentalists and farmers celebrated a $100 million state purchase of 50,272 acres of timber and grazing land north of Cle Elum on Oct. 1 and its designation as the state’s first community forest.

The purchase saves the land from potential development and as part of the Yakima Basin Integrated Plan will lead toward more irrigation water for farmers and ranchers in the basin, said Peter Goldmark, commissioner of Public Lands, and others at the celebration.

The event was held at the Swauk-Teanaway Grange Hall, 10 miles east of Cle Elum, in the Teanaway Valley. Goldmark said the deal officially closed that morning and is the largest single land purchase by the state in 45 years.

“The Teanaway River is a confluence of many branches. This celebration today is the confluence of the work of many people,” Goldmark said.

While the inability of Congress to work together shut down the federal government in recent days, diverse groups working on the Yakima Basin Integrated Plan in recent years have taken heat from their own constituencies in collaboration and compromise for the common good, said Phil Anderson, director of the state Department of Fish and Wildlife.

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Oct09

Ellensburg Daily Record: Teanaway land purchase celebrated

By Zach Smith

October 2, 2013

As of 11:37 a.m. Monday, Washington state’s purchase of more than 50,000 acres of Teanaway forest land was made official.

The transaction marked the end of a process that took more than a decade to complete — one that required politicians on both sides of the aisle working side by side with a slew of public and private organizations to establish the state’s first-ever community forest.

A day after the purchase was finalized, several of the key players in the process gathered at the Swauk-Teanaway Grange near Cle Elum to celebrate the historic accomplishment.

“The Teanaway has been the holy grail of conservation for the past decade,” said Gene Duvernoy, president of the conservation group Forterra. “Conserving 50,000 acres isn’t easy.”

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Oct09

Ellensburg Daily Record: Editorial: Water plan is big, but it needs to be

By Editorial Board

October 2, 2013

Sometimes you can be too close to something to realize how big that something is.

That may or may not be the case with the Teanaway land sale being celebrated today with an event starting at 2 p.m. at the Swauk-Teanaway Grange on Ballard Hill Road.

But as big as it is, it is part of something even bigger — the Yakima Basin Integrated Water Resource Management Plan.

The water plan is huge — roughly $4.2 billion when or if all the components are completed.

It is big because it satisfies multiple needs and concerns — environmentalists, irrigators, fish and wildlife.

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Oct09

KUOW: State Buys 38,000 Football Fields Of Land In Teanaway

By Ross Reynolds

October 1, 2013

The Washington State Department of Natural Resources, the Department of Fish and Wildlife and Forterra announced yesterday the purchase of more than 50,000 acres n the headwaters of the Yakima Basin watershed.

It will be designated as the Teanaway Community Forest. That’s big. How big? Think 38,000 football fields. It’s the state’s largest land acquisition in 45 years. Ross Reynolds spoke to Washington State Lands Commissioner Peter Goldmark as he headed from Olympia to Teanaway and asked him about the future of this now state-run land.

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Oct09

Northwest Public Radio: A Land Deal To Conserve Central Wash. Water And Wildlife

By Courtney Flatt

October 7, 2013

If you look up the North Fork of Central Washington’s Teanaway River, you can see snowcapped Mount Stuart in the distance.

This area outside Cle Elum is a popular destination for hikers and fishers, and it’s home to wildlife including a wolf pack, spotted owls, and moose.

Jeff Tayer with the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife is helping guide a tour along the Teanaway riverbanks.

“The Teanaway River is the most important tributary in the Yakima Basin for both protection – in other words protecting existing functioning habitat – and restoration,” Tayer said.

The Teanaway River splits into three forks. Each one snakes its way through ponderosa pines. Some areas have been logged. Others look untouched.

“To show that right out of the gate that there would be overwhelming landscape, terrestrial benefits, as well as the river and salmon benefits that were clear in the plan in the first place,” said Michael Garrity with American Rivers.

Continue reading the story.

Fish. Families. Farms.
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