Gov. Otter Says No to Wilderness? Or No to Collaboration?

We were pleased to have the opportunity to watch today’s live webcast of the U.S. Senate’s Energy and Natural Resources Subcommittee on Public Lands and Forests hearing today regarding the Boulder-White Cloud bill which would bring new wilderness to central Idaho. In a press release issued after the hearing, Idaho Conservation League noted that “the legislation will protect as wilderness 332,775 acres in the Boulder more »

The Wolf Hearing – Up Close

KEA member and sometimes volunteer Rich Hurry emailed this account from the federal court hearing yesterday in Missoula regarding the de-listing of wolves under the Endangered Species Act. In his account, Rich, who is very much a wolf advocate, suggests some important lessons for both sides of the debate. I attended Judge Molloy’s hearing in Missoula, MT yesterday about whether the gray wolf was improperly de-listed from the more »

Roots CSA Successfully Supplies Spinach for Salad

Although the growing season has barely begun, we were pleased to see that our brand new Roots CSA has already gained some level of success. We’re big fans of one of our CSA’s big fans, and we were pleased to see that the nice folks at were able to take some early harvest spinach and turn it into something that looks absolutely scrumptious. Check out more »

Oil Spills and Mining Messes

We continue to watch in horror as the gulf oil spill expands and consumes beaches, marshland, birds, fish, and other wildlife. Even when the spill finally stops, the gulf region is facing years and years of cleanup. Those of us in North Idaho can relate as well as anyone south of Prince William Sound, Alaska.  Environmentally, the oil mess in the gulf is not unlike more »

Ugh. IDL Approves Moorage Buoys in Cougar Bay

In a stunning decision, the Idaho Department of Lands has approved a proposal by Kootenai County Parks and Waterways to locate moorage buoys for motorized boats in Cougar Bay.  We are reviewing the decision here at KEA, but on initial reading, we are deeply concerned. The IDL decision reduced the number of moorage buoys from the 12 in the original proposal to three. The IDL more »

Commissioners Approve Access Road Through Contaminated Flood Zone

Disappointingly bringing an end to a long process, lame-duck Commissioners Rick Currie and Rich Piazza outvoted Commissioner Todd Tondee today to approve a site-disturbance permit for a roadway through a frequently flooded, contaminated property along the Coeur d’Alene River near Medimont. The proposal, from developer / realtor John Beutler, would provide new access to an unbuilt subdivision along the River.  Community members and environmental interests more »

A Cougar Bay History

KEA Board member Wes Hanson provides this background piece on the extraordinary Cougar Bay: Cougar Bay and its surrounding shoreline are dear to many people living here.  Situated one mile from Coeur d’Alene, Cougar Bay is the last undeveloped shallow bay at Lake Coeur d’Alene’s northern end.  It contains rich wildlife habitats in its water, wetland, and uplands.  Realizing Cougar Bay is a threatened and more »

What We’re Reading – BP Edition

Some fascinating and angry readings coming out of the BP disaster in the Gulf: What would Rand Paul do? Would a private property libertarian have much help for Louisianans in oil spill cleanup? Are they really “our” wetlands? – (Also, some Rand Paul views on the environment – Legal Planet) Parsing the PR: what does BP mean when it says it will pay for more »

From Coffee Bean to Local Compost

One more Community Roots thing before the official-start-of-summer weekend. Our favorite Local Food Share and Roots CSA worker bee Korrine Kreilkamp reports back to our friends at DOMA Coffee that: “DOMA coffee bean chaff is being utilized at the Shared Harvest Community Garden compost and also at the Roots CSA compost. Sweet!!!!” Indeed, KEA’s expanding local food operations are acutely aware of the need for quality organic compost to maintain soil fertility more »

Roots Pursuit – Totally Fun

Volunteer organizer extraordinaire Angela Earnhart sends us the following report from this past weekend’s Roots Pursuit: Thanks to everyone participating in the Roots Pursuit last weekend!!!  This being the first year, I know none of you knew quite what to expect, so kudos for being brave enough to check it out!  Seems like everyone had a great time and we look forward to doing it again more »