Megaload on U.S. Highway 12 Going Slower than Expected


A megaload carrying water purification equipment was expected to reach somewhere between Lowell and Wilderness Gateway Campground on U.S. Highway 12 this [Thursday] morning.

The Idaho Transportation Department (ITD) offered no projection Wednesday of what the travel schedule for tonight and Friday morning is expected to be.

The oversized shipment deviated from its original travel plan Wednesday when it stopped about halfway between Kamiah and Kooskia rather than going all the way to Kooskia, wrote Adam Rush, a spokesman for ITD at Boise, in an email. Continue reading

Mega-Load Rolls through the Night on U.S. 12


One of the largest shipments ever to roll across U.S. Highway 12 is sitting at a rest stop near Orofino this morning, after crawling through the night from the Port of Wilma, Washington, and into Idaho.

This morning’s Lewiston Tribune reports that the 236-foot-long mega-load is water purification equipment bound for the Kearl Oil Sands Project in Alberta, Canada.

The Tribune reports that the mega-load consumes two lanes of traffic, but is not allowed to delay other highway vehicles more than 15 minutes, per its permit instructions from the Idaho Transportation Department.  The hauler paid $1,070 for the permit, according to the Tribune.

Idaho environmentalists, including Wild Idaho Rising Tide, were planning two demonstrations against highway use by the mega-loads – the first Monday night in Lewiston and another for Wednesay night near Syringa.

Read more: Mega-Load Rolls through the Night on U.S. 12

(By George Prentice, Boise Weekly)

Megaload to Travel over Lolo Pass, through Missoula


One very large truckload of Alberta-bound water purification equipment is headed Montana’s way over Lolo Pass.

The shipment was slated to start up U.S. Highway 12 from the Port of Wilma near Lewiston, Idaho, at 10 p.m. PDT Monday.  It’s expected to take four night moves to reach the Montana line.

Barring weather snafus or other delays, the load and an accompanying coterie of pilot and escort vehicles could start moving through Missoula and western Montana after dark on Sunday, according to the Montana Department of Transportation (MDT).

Duane Williams, administrator for MDT’s Motor Carrier Division, said Montana has yet to issue a permit but has approved a plan for the megaload to travel up the Blackfoot River, over Rogers Pass, and into Canada at the Port of Sweetgrass.  That’s the same system of two-lane highways over which a district judge barred Imperial Oil/ExxonMobil of Canada from transporting more than 200 megaloads early this year.

Neither Williams, Idaho Transportation Department spokesman Adam Rush, nor a representative from the transport company, Omega Morgan of Oregon, would say who the coming load belongs to.

Read more: Megaload to Travel over Lolo Pass, through Missoula

(By Kim Briggeman, The Missoulian)

Megaload Heads for Canada’s Oil Sands Region


The large megaload staged at the Port of Wilma is not a three-stage Saturn rocket but water purification equipment that began its journey through north central Idaho starting Monday night on U.S. Highway 12 (The Lewiston Tribune/Barry Kough photo).

Water purification equipment bound for a town in the heart of the Canadian oil sands left the Port of Wilma just west of Clarkston at about 10:15 p.m. Monday.

The 236-foot-long megaload edged its way onto Wawawai River Road just west of Red Wolf Bridge.  Crew members walked alongside it, appearing to make adjustments to the equipment.  White lights, looking almost like holiday decorations, hung on the sides.

It is one of the longest shipments ever to take U.S. Highway 12 across Idaho and was expected to be in Orofino by early this morning.  The load is significantly shorter than the 300 feet that the Idaho Transportation Department (ITD) initially reported as its length.

In contrast, oil company shipments that previously went on U.S. 12 were 208 and 233 feet long.

This latest cargo, manufactured by Newberg, Oregon-based Harris Thermal, was barged to the Port of Wilma from the Portland area.  It is going to an unspecified end user in Fort McMurray, Alberta, Canada, wrote Olga Haley in an email.  Haley is an employee of a media relations agency handling publicity for Omega Morgan, the transport company. Continue reading

New U.S. 12 Megaload


The Monday, October 22, KRFP Radio Free Moscow Evening Report, New U.S. 12 Megaload, describes the proposed Highway 12 transport of a half-million-pound tar sands water treatment vessel by hauler Omega Morgan.  A KRFP interview of Helen Yost of Wild Idaho Rising Tide discusses its significance to regional challenges of similar industrial corridor ventures and planned resistance activities.  Listen to Megaload to Travel up U.S. 12 Tonight between Lewiston and Montana between 11:57 and 2:40 of the Monday Evening Report.

New ‘Megaload’ to Travel Idaho Scenic Route


A 260-ton piece of equipment is winding its way through the inland Northwest this week.  The Idaho Department of Transportation gave the green light to a shipper moving water purification equipment into Canada.

The shipment is about the same size as the so-called “megaloads.”  Those were pieces of an oil processing facility headed for Canada’s oil sands.  The new shipment will use the same hotly contested scenic route – Idaho’s Highway 12.

Read and listen to more: New ‘Megaload’ to Travel Idaho Scenic Route

(By Jessica Robinson, Northwest Public Radio)

Dana Lyons’ Great Coal Tour Makes a Stop in Rising Tide Country


On Friday evening, October 19, performer and environmental educator Dana Lyons of Bellingham, Washington, brought his Great Coal Train Tour to Moscow.  Best known for his comedy hit song Cows with Guns, Dana has recorded eight albums during his lifetime artistic career, working around the world to raise awareness, activism, and funds for environmental and social justice causes.

Visiting communities gathered from potentially impacted groups like eastern Montana ranchers, Lummi Indians, and Puget Sound residents, from Billings to Bellingham, from Portland to Coos Bay, all along the route of proposed coal export trains through four Northwestern states, Dana’s fun and inspiring concert intermingled stories of resistance to associated mines, trains, and ports.

Read more and see the Cows with Guns video: Dana Lyons’ Great Coal Tour Makes a Stop in Rising Tide Country

(By Earth First! Newswire, cross-posted from Wild Idaho Rising Tide facebook page)

Omega Morgan Megaload Observation and Objection


On Wednesday, October 17, the Idaho Transportation Department issued a permit to Omega Morgan Inc. to haul a water treatment vessel of unknown ownership up U.S. Highway 12 between 10 pm and 5:30 am on Monday night, October 22, through Saturday night, October 27.  At 300 feet, this longest overlegal load to ever traverse the wild and scenic river corridor and largest wildlands complex in the contiguous U.S. states weighs 520,000 pounds and measures 20 feet wide and 22 feet high.  Like the four 226-foot-long ConocoPhillips megaloads and one since dismantled ExxonMobil test validation module that Idahoans monitored last year, it will probably encounter difficult passage frustrated by impending snow and tight curves between roadside rock cliffs and guard-railed precipices over the Lochsa and Middle Fork Clearwater rivers.

The region, if not the nation, is watching this incursion, as apparent in a recent Boise Weekly article, Idaho Transportation Department Greenlights Mega-Load for U.S. Highway 12, and an Oregonian piece, Water-Purification Equipment Will Be Transported on Disputed Idaho-Montana Mountain Highway.  Your involvement in monitoring and protesting this likely tar sands equipment as it grinds up highways from the Port of Wilma, Washington, to northern Alberta is more essential than ever.  Wild Idaho Rising Tide (WIRT) and our regional allies have coordinated two protests and four nights of monitoring activities to confront this industrial invasion. Continue reading

Dana Lyons’ Great Coal Train Tour in Moscow 10-19-12


On Friday evening, October 19, performer and environmental educator Dana Lyons of Bellingham, Washington, brought his Great Coal Train Tour to Moscow. Best known for his comedy hit song Cows with Guns, Dana has recorded eight albums during his lifetime artistic career, working around the world to raise awareness, activism, and funds for environmental and social justice causes. Visiting communities from Billings to Bellingham and from Portland to Coos Bay along the route of proposed coal export trains through four Northwestern states, Dana’s fun and inspiring concert intermingled stories of resistance to associated mines, trains, and ports, gathered from potentially impacted groups like eastern Montana ranchers, Lummi Indians, and Puget Sound residents. While federal, state, and county agencies accept public scoping comments on the largest prospective coal export facility in North America, five local conservation organizations hosted this benefit event to bolster knowledge and participation in this significant regional and global issue. Wild Idaho Rising Tide, the Palouse Group of the Sierra Club, Friends of the Clearwater, Palouse Environmental Sustainability Coalition, and the Palouse Broadband of Great Old Broads for Wilderness offered appetizers and no-host beer and wine for almost 100 attendees at the Unitarian Universalist Church of the Palouse. After the show, visiting Occupy Spokane activists and Wild Idaho Rising Tide members staged a light projection action near the Sixth and Jackson street intersection in Moscow. Illuminating some recently repainted crop silos with messages denouncing Northwest coal exports and proclaiming various group affiliations, Ziggy and his comrades huddled under an awning in the rain, as passing motorists and pedestrians marveled at huge spotlighted campaign slogans and logos.

Continue reading

Megaload Set to Begin Journey Monday on U.S. Highway 12


Nighttime traffic is expected to be slowed next week on U.S. Highway 12, as a megaload takes a four-night journey across north central Idaho.

The 20-foot-wide, 300-foot-long, 22-foot-high shipment weighing 520,000 pounds will be carrying water purification equipment headed for Canada, according to a news release from the Idaho Transportation Department (ITD).

It will travel between 10 p.m. and 5:30 a.m. each night, leaving Monday from the Port of Wilma just west of Clarkston and entering Idaho on Down River Road before the journey to Orofino on U.S. 12.

The second leg of the trip is from Orofino to Kooskia, the third portion goes from Kooskia to milepost 127, and the fourth part will take it to the Montana border. Continue reading