When we address problems by working together, we get better results than with heavy, top-down declarations.
Working Forests Action Network
Dear <<First Name>>,

We know it intuitively --- when we work together, we create better, more satisfying solutions.

When we address problems collaboratively we get better results than with heavy, top-down declarations.

That was certainly the case in the late 1990s when tribes, conservation groups and the timber industry came together to imagine a plan for protecting fish habitat and maintaining cool, clean water flowing through forested streams.

The Forests & Fish Law was the end result of that landmark collaboration among a variety of stakeholders to achieve the goals of healthy fish habitat, clean water and an economically sound timber industry. 

Today, we face new challenges, but we share the same end goal --- a clean environment for our future. We’re going to keep looking to cooperative science to keep us on target. At every step of this journey, we should also seek collaborative partnerships for reaching our destination together.

One great example of how working together produces positive results is a recent agreement between land conservationists, Washington State Parks, the U.S. Navy, and private forestry that will maintain an important buffer of working forests around Naval Base Kitsap and prevent unwanted development.

The agreement on a conservation easement will keep the buffer the Navy needs, offer recreational access to 215 acres of shoreline and wooded areas, and allow forestry to continue on almost 3,400 acres of working forest.

From the Kitsap Sun

JEFFERSON COUNTY — Naval Base Kitsap expanded the buffer around its operations Monday by purchasing a restrictive easement with Pope Resources on 3,392 timbered acres near the Dosewallips River.

The Navy is spending $4.9 million to prevent significant development or construction from ever occurring in the area. Pope agrees to continue to do no more than it is now — manage and harvest the trees. …

“The ability of the Navy to continue our vital missions and training is critical to our nation’s defense,” Capt. Tom Zwolfer, Naval Base Kitsap commanding officer, said in a news release. “One of the keys to achieving that goal is ensuring that intensive development does not occur on land bordering bases and training areas.” …

“The easement and land sale will reduce future potential conflicts between Hood Canal naval operations and the development of our property while at the same time expanding public and riparian access to the Dosewallips River,” [Pope Olympic Property Group president Jon Rose] said.

The Dosewallips River agreement is the most recent in a series of agreements between the Navy and local partners to preserve buffer zones around military bases in ways that satisfy local demands for managing development while avoiding destructive economic impacts. Win-win.

Can we do more? Of course we can. Successful collaborations like the Forests & Fish Law resulted in strong environmental regulations that we rely on to protect our environmental and economic values, which allows other partnering efforts, like the Dosewallips River agreement, to be successful.  

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Working Forests Action Network
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