"Ban Aerial Spray!" - Oregon Voters
As you have probably heard by now, there is much reason to celebrate. A local special election saw voters in Lincoln County, Oregon decide that their county should be the first in the country to ban aerial spraying by ballot initiative!
|Oregon Wild partnered with Citizens for a Healthy County to raise awareness about aerial spray in Lincoln County at many packed house events!|
The county initiative, championed by Citizens for a Healthy County and endorsed by Oregon Wild in this blog post earlier this year, has been in limbo since the May 16th election, but the vote has been tallied and Measure 21-177, won by 61 votes!
Although Oregon Wild is focused on fighting aerial spray, and the clearcutting that encourages it, at the State (not county) level, we have to stop and join aerial spray activists around the state in what is an undeniable victory achieved by local, rural grassroots activists up against hundreds of thousands of dollars in industry spending!
This year, Oregon Wild and our partners worked on several pieces of legislation that would bring common sense reform to Oregon's "weakest in the West" regulations on aerial spray. The result of this effort is described here by the Portland Tribune:
Senator Roblan's statements about aerial spray seem to put him at odds with his own constituents.
"The deciding vote was cast by Sen. Arnie Roblan, who said that he's uncomfortable with the notification requirements due to the history of sabotage against Oregon's timber industry. People who disagree with any logging could seek to disrupt forestry activities, just as they did in the past by spiking trees, potentially causing danger to themselves or other, Roblan said." (Source)
While it is frustrating that a single Senator can so easily block important legislation from even seeing the light of day in Salem, we find some joy in knowing that Senator Roblan's statements and actions were followed by an immediate rebuke from his own constituents.
Senator Roblan, and other leaders in Salem, should listen to Oregonians, 67% of whom told pollsters they'd favor a ban on aerial spray, and quickly move Oregon's logging rules in the right direction.
This Satellite Image shows rampant clearcutting in Lincoln County, a quick view of Oregon shows similar patterns in most of the coast.
If elected officials don't get the message soon, we may see another strong signal from Lane County that it's time for large scale reform, as they seek to get a similar measure on the November ballot.
Follow the link below for more on that effort.
Click here if you are in Lane County and want to support a ban on aerial spray!
We celebrate this victory, and we celebrate the voters who showed up to demand their right to clean drinking water, healthy fish, and thriving eco-systems. We will continue working every day to bring these common sense protection to all Oregonians and the water, wildlife and forests that we all love.
Join Oregon Wild today and help us achieve what we only can accomplish together!