Thursday, April 30, 2009


The first half of the day was boring; it was more of the same. I won't even bore you with it...

The second half I got to go to a meeting that was discussing the feasibility of have a gravel mining facility on the Applegate River. The meeting is part of an Oregon government project called The Oregon Solutions Network which is comprised of businesses, non-profits, government agencies and citizen organizations that are able to connect their resources, expertise and interests to collaborative, community based projects. So a bunch of folks from various organizations (including the gravel mining company) get together to discuss the best environmental ways to go about having a sustainable gravel mining industry here in the Applegate Valley. The debate/discussion was very interesting; on one hand the agencies and organizations are trying to meet or exceed all the environmental concerns (mostly listed endangered fish) while on the other, the gravel company is trying to make their business financially feasible and sustainable. There was a lot of wheel spinning (as there often is at these things), but also a lot of headway. It was good to see the mining company there and on board with meeting environmental expectations, but from what I gathered, I think they are expected some sort of way to get out of the very expensive permitting process. I'm lucky in the sense that I got to be in the room, not contribute, and just listen to the process which seems like a fairly progressive one to me. The Oregon Solutions Network is various governor picked projects that he deems important to creating economically and environmentally sustainable communities where a dialogue is started (and finished) and where everyone comes out somewhat happy. I think we are a long way off with this particular project, but it seems like everybody wants to move in the right direction which is what it's all about.

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