Details on Canadian Flathead mining ban short – for now

The devil could be in the details-

Some think the mining ban could have been to cut off growing provincial demands for a park in the area to complement Waterton NP in Alberta and Glacier in the United States.

Details on Canadian Flathead mining ban short – for now. By Rob Chaney. Missoulian.

Earlier on this blog.

Great News! British Columbia says no mining in North Fork Flathead River

After years of controversy, B.C. to ban  mining, energy development in critical headwaters of famed river near Glacier National Park-

I have been worried about this for years, and posted many articles. Every month is seemed a new, massive environmentally destructive scheme was proposed for the North Fork.

Now British Columbia Lt. Gov. Steven Point says the North Fork Flathead River drainage will be off limits to mining and energy extraction in a speech to the B.C.  Parliament. Let’s hope the details don’t have loopholes.

British Columbia declares Canadian North Fork off limits to mining, energy development. By Rob Chaney. Missoulian
New article added on 2-11-2010. British Columbia Bans Mining, Drilling in Flathead River Valley. Environment News Service. This article gives additional information efforts to further protect area, something that was raised in the comments.

Photos (with locations)
http://www.panoramio.com/photo/14392571
http://www.panoramio.com/photo/14315354
http://www.panoramio.com/photo/14422009
http://www.panoramio.com/photo/14511373
http://www.panoramio.com/photo/14392898
http://www.panoramio.com/photo/14393086
http://www.panoramio.com/photo/14415878
http://www.panoramio.com/photo/15215649
http://www.panoramio.com/photo/15216233

Glacier, Yellowstone and Grand Teton manage roadside griz differently

Which method works best?

Actually it seems to me that there are too few differences in result so far to make a determination.

Glacier hazes roadside bears; Grand Teton, Yellowstone let people close. By Cory Hatch, Jackson Hole News and Guide.

Back in the days before 1970, Yellowstone let people feed sandwiches and twinkes to bears along the roadside. About 60 tourists were injured a year as a result. Yet there was a great outrage from the public when the practice of roadside feeding was stopped.

Today bears are coming back to the edge or roads, but feeding is not allowed. Injuries are few to none. If injuries increase, how will the public and Park Service react?

One more British Columbia threat to Glacier National Park

Gold deposit discovered on ridge visible from Glacier in the North Fork Flathead River-

First it was coal mining, then coal bed methane, now gold; and all the pollution runs into the United States.

Canadian company claims rich gold find north of Glacier National Park, raising concerns. By Michael Jamison. Missoulian

Posted in water issues, Wildlife Habitat. Tags: , , , . Comments Off on One more British Columbia threat to Glacier National Park

Wolf quota reached west of Glacier National Park after Monday morning kill at Big Creek

Quota of 2 wolves has been reached in North Fork of Flathead area-

The quota was only two, but three wolves were poached in the during the hunt.

Story: Wolf hunt closed west of Glacier. Missoulian.

Albino black bear moved to Glacier National Park

Move was to protect it during the general hunting season-

Albino bear moved. Bozeman Chronicle.

Rocky Mountain Front, wildlife, and other projects get funded in Montana in Interior Appropriations Bill

Bill includes funding to reimburse for wolf kills, but may also contain money for proactive measures-

From what I’ve read, this sounds pretty good to me for wildlife and outdoors in Montana. Great Falls Tribune.

Coexistence with grizzlies is generally a success in Montana

Feature article says that despite notable incidents and failures, grizzly recovery in NW Montana is successful-

Knowledge to coexist: For most part, industry succeeds in informing people about bruins. By Michael Jamison. Missoulian.

The “grizzly-whisperer” and Old Man Lake female

Carrie Hunt has had great success but one “too friendly” griz is going to die-

Michael Jamison of the Missoulian has written a most interesting article about a so far gentle old Glacier Park sow who has resisted all efforts, including the most sophisticated (bear shepherding), to stop approaching people. It may be because the bear was not “shepherded” for two years.

Grizzly sow in Glacier will be killed.  By Michael Jamison.
Added on 8/18/09. Grizzly sow, yearling cub killed in Glacier National Park. By Michael Jamison. Missoulian.

Interior chief Salazar visits North Fork of Flathead

Senator Baucus tells Secretry of Interior about the many threats from British Columbia-

The latest threat to the river and Glacier National Park is gold mining.

Interior chief Salazar visits North Fork. Missoulian. By Michael Jamison. BC’s indifference, I think, or at least hope, is mostly an accident of geography because no one lives in the B.C. area just north and northwest of Glacier National Park, and all the water flows into the United States.

United Nations Will Study Threats to Waterton-Glacier International Peace Park

Finally some international pressure on the coal pit/coalbed methane proposals just northwest of Glacier (and Waterton) National Parks-

United Nations Will Study Threats to Waterton-Glacier International Peace Park. By Dan Testa, Flathead Beacon (in New West)

Posted in Coal, energy, oil and gas, politics, Wildlife Habitat. Tags: , , , . Comments Off on United Nations Will Study Threats to Waterton-Glacier International Peace Park

Hiker with pistol and spray survives encounter with grizzly sow with cubs

Boise, Idaho man said attack happened too fast to use either when he surprised the bears-

Fortunately he was able to walk 4 miles to the trailhead.

Update: the original story has been replaced by a much more detailed one below.

Boise man in hospital following griz attack. By Karin Ronnow. Bozeman Chronicle Staff Writer

. . . and there have been more recent encounters.

Two Alberta men recovering from grizzly attack. Edmunton Journal. They were searching for elk antlers. A lot of grizzly bear attacks have happened to those looking too intently for elk antlers while in grizzly country.

Glacier National Park jogger survives grizzly attack. Missoulian. By Jim Mann in the Daily InterLake. The jogger forgot his pepper spray. At any rate, jogging on trails in dense grizzly country like Glacier National Park is not a good idea.

Glacier National Parks rangers accidentally kill black bear with a cracker shell

How could this happen?

You don’t try to hit the bear/wolf, whatever. Did the shell not explode and the bear ate it? !

Bear killed after hazing effort. By the Associated Press

UN to consider petition against the planned coal development that will endanger Glacier National Park and Waterton National Park

The massive Foisey Creek coal development in B.C. (the Lodgepole coal pit and 2000 coal bed methane wells) is becoming an international issue.

UN to hear petition. The Globe and Mail. By Mark Hume.

Earlier in this blog.

5/15/09. North Fork Flathead plight in U.N. spotlight
9/5/08. Another coal mine planned near the upper Flathead River?
6/9/08. Obama opposes B.C. coal mine near Glacier National Park
3/1/08. Bordering on Catastrophe (more on plans to industrialize the area near Glacier NP)
2/19/08. Montana leaders to get update on Canadian energy plans just north of the border
5/24/2007. Huge B.C. coal mine that would drain into Montana gets attention from Condoleeza Rice
What a coal pit mine in the Canadian Rockies looks like. This is about 20 miles NE near Sparwood, B. C.

foisey-ridge

Foisey Ridge, British Columbia. The mountain would be turned into a pit with thousands of “step out” coal bed methane wells and associated roads. The North Fork of the Flathead River rises on this ridge. You can see dust from a big logging operation on the left (clearing off the mountain for mining?). Photo taken by copyright © Ralph Maughan. Oct. 2008.
Posted in Coal, mining, Wildlife Habitat. Tags: , , , , , . Comments Off on UN to consider petition against the planned coal development that will endanger Glacier National Park and Waterton National Park

North Fork Flathead plight in U.N. spotlight

Coal mining threat from Canada just north of Glacier NP is becoming an international issue-

I made a trip to the mine proposed area (and even worse coal bed methane wells) in British Columbia last summer. What a horrible place to do this! Other than the local fish and wildlife (and there is a lot), all the damage will be in Montana as the toxins flow over the border.

North Fork Flathead plight in U.N. spotlight. By Chris Peterson. Hungry Horse News.

Photo I took last summer. Headwaters of North Fork Flathead about a mile downstream from giant coal mine proposal

Glacier National Park gears up to celebrate its 100th Anniversary

8-19. Change marks Glacier’s approach to centennial. Park positioning itself to deal with new realities, emerging as a leader. By Michael Jamison. Missoulian.

8-20. Glacier grabs hold of uncertain future. By Michael Jamison. Missoulian.

8-21. Glacier Park: The next century – Threats from all sides. By Michael Jamison. Missoulian.

The 100th year celebration of the creation of Glacier National Park in Montana on the U.S./Canada border is approaching. It’s in 2010. The Missoulian is doing a series. Here are parts I, II and III

Posted in national parks, public lands. Tags: . Comments Off on Glacier National Park gears up to celebrate its 100th Anniversary

Obama opposes B.C. coal mine near Glacier National Park

Rescue may be on the way to the threatened wild country just north of the U.S. border in British Columbia. It depends on the outcome of the U.S. election.

Some folks on this forum, including myself, have complained about the failure by the candidates to talk about specific conservation issues. Obama’s positiion was announced when he was campaining in the Montana primary election.

These open pit coal mine/coalbed methane plans in the North Fork of the Flathead River don’t seem to have support anywhere in Montana because all of the costs flow into Montana and none of the benefits. Many, of course, are concerned about the inherent value of this wonderful wild country.

Story in Canada.com. Obama opposes B.C. coal mine. Canwest News Service

Posted in Coal, energy, politics, Wildlife Habitat. Tags: , . Comments Off on Obama opposes B.C. coal mine near Glacier National Park

Researchers Using GPS to Track the Elusive Wolverine at Glacier National Park

British Petroleum’s plans for thousands of coal bed methane wells near Glacier NP are dropped

This is great news! BP drops Flathead coal-bed plan. By Michael Jamison. Missoulian.

I recently did a story on the grave threat of these wells to the water, air and land in British Columbia just NW of Glacier National Park.

The plans for the huge mountaintop coal mine (the Cline Mine) remain, however.

Here is the most extensive article. BP Drops Coal-Bed Methane Exploration Project North of Glacier Park. Flathead Beacon. By Dan Testa.

Montana leaders to get update on Canadian energy plans just north of the border

“Congress is coming to Kalispell [Montana] this week for a town hall meeting to discuss the proposed industrialization of Canadian wilds bordering Glacier National Park’s northern edge.”

US Senators Baucus and Tester are holding a meeting to discuss British Columbia’s plans to tear the hell out of upper Flathead river which drains directly into Montana.

Story in the Missoulian.

Guest column in Headwaters News. Montana has a lot at stake in B.C. mining proposal. By Dave Hadden, President
Flathead Coalition

When you have a President like George W. Bush, you don’t have much moral status to complain about another country wrecking its environment, but the negative impacts of this will be almost entirely felt in Montana, Idaho, and Washington State as the poisons pollute the pristine Flathead River and ruin Glacier National Park. It’s an international incident, and British Columbia’s government needs to get the message.
____________
Not many Americans have seen this country. A road leads south from Elko, B.C. past huge ugly coal pits and then into the relatively undisturbed (except for some logging) headwaters of the North Fork of the Flathead River. The road then crosses into Montana. I drove the road about 15 years ago. I planned to go back last summer to photograph what they are up to, but I found this border crossing had been permanently closed a long time ago, not long after I crossed through (maybe just a year or two). So now there is no direct route into the currently wildlife rich and scenic country in BC,* and even on Google Earth the resolution of the area is very low. Update I notice that in the last month Google Earth has finally put in higher resolution photos.

They are trying to sneak this through.

nfk-flathead1.jpg
North Fork of the Flathead River, British Columbia. Photo taken back in 1992 by Ralph Maughan

*I do notice that recent Google Maps shows a growing web of minor road, cuts, and exploration pits.

Climate Change Impacts More Than Glacier’s Glaciers