ROOTS enjoyed shallow support

  Dear HCN,


As a former intern and longtime friend of the paper, I have often defended HCN's journalistic integrity, even when your views didn't happen to support my own. Paul Larmer's recent article, "Idaho grizzly plan shifts into low gear" (HCN, 11/9/98), leaves me feeling painfully bereft of much defensible.


Larmer focuses on the "ROOTS Alternative" for grizzly bear reintroduction in the Selway-Bitterroot Ecosystem as if this were an option worth rallying behind. While a consensus approach to problem-solving is surely tempting, we must still judge the product of collaborative efforts for their merits and not just pat ourselves on the back for creating a feel-good process.


Supporters (the few that can be found) for the ROOTS Alternative like to bill it as a "Win-Win," but the sad truth is that prospective winners from this option do not include the dozen or so grizzly bears that would be tagged and collared, reclassified "experimental, nonessential," offered scant designated habitat and no protections from extractive industry, and dropped into the Selway-Bitterroot. When the designers of the ROOTS Alternative sat down to plan, they neglected to invite any bears - or, for that matter, anyone willing to try to speak on behalf of the bears.


Larmer somehow fails even to mention that the Draft EIS includes a Conservation Biology Alternative for griz reintroduction. Crafted by the Alliance for the Wild Rockies - one of the ostensibly "silent" local environmental groups - this alternative not only provides for the full protection of Selway-Bitterroot grizzlies and their habitat, but also includes provisions for road removal and habitat restoration that would generate hundreds of high-paying local jobs. At hearings last year, the overwhelming majority of individual testimony received by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service criticized the ROOTS Alternative and favored the stronger protections offered in the Conservation Biology Alternative.


If I didn't have such deep faith in your journalism, I would have to question the editorial influence wielded by certain board members. Say it ain't so! We have not been silent, we just continue to speak out for a better plan than that offered by ROOTS.





David Havlick


Missoula, Montana


High Country News Classifieds
  • MEMBERSHIP MANAGER
    For more information visit www. wyofile.com/careers/
  • THRIVING LOCAL HEALTH FOOD STORE FOR SALE
    Turn-key business opportunity. Successful well established business with room to grow. Excellent highway visibility.
  • DEVELOPMENT DIRECTOR
    For more information, visit www.wyofile.com/careers/
  • SONORAN INSTITUTE, CEO
    Chief Executive Officer Tucson, Arizona ABOUT SONORAN INSTITUTE Since 1990, the Sonoran Institute has brought together diverse interests to successfully forge effective and enduring conservation...
  • STAFF ATTORNEY
    STAFF ATTORNEY POSITION OPENING www.westernlaw.org/about-us/clinic-interns-careers The Western Environmental Law Center (WELC) is a high-impact, nonprofit public interest environmental law firm with a 27-year legacy using...
  • PROJECT MANAGER
    Position Summary Join our Team at the New Mexico Land Conservancy! We're seeking a Project Manager who will work to protect land and water across...
  • SEEKING PROPERTY FOR BISON HERD
    Seeking additional properties for a herd of 1,000 AUM minimum. Interested in partnering with landowners looking to engage in commercial and/or conservation bison ranching. Location...
  • DIRECTOR OF PRODUCT AND MARKETING
    High Country News seeks a Director of Product and Marketing to join our senior team during an exciting chapter of innovation and growth. This individual...
  • WILDLIFE HAVEN
    Beautiful acreage with Teton Creek flowing through it. Springs and ponds, lots of trees, moose and deer. Property has barn. Easy access. approx. 33 acres.
  • ARIZONA CONSERVATION CORPS PROGRAM DIRECTOR
    Arizona Conservation Corps is seeking a Program Director in Flagstaff or Tucson
  • COPPER STAIN: ASARCO'S LEGACY IN EL PASO
    Tales from scores of ex-employees unearth the human costs of an economy that runs on copper.
  • EXPERT LAND STEWART
    Available for site conservator, property manager. View resume at http://skills.ojadigital.net.
  • CONSERVATIONIST? IRRIGABLE LAND?
    Stellar seed-saving NGO is available to serious partner. Package must include financial support. Details: http://seeds.ojaidigital.net.
  • CANYONLANDS FIELD INSTITUTE
    Colorado Plateau Natural & Human History Field Seminars. Lodge, river, hiking options. Small groups, guest experts.
  • WESTERN NATIVE SEED
    Specializing in native seeds and seed mixes for western states.
  • CHUCK BURR'S CULTUREQUAKE.COM BLOG
    Change will happen when we see a new way of living. Thinking to save the world.
  • COMING TO TUCSON?
    Popular vacation house, furnished, 2 bed/1 bath, yard, dog-friendly. Lee at [email protected] or 520-791-9246.
  • OJO CALIENTE COMMERCIAL VENTURE
    Outstanding location near the world famous Ojo Caliente Mineral Spring Resort. Classic adobe Mercantile complete w/living quarters, separate 6 unit B&B, metal building and spacious...