Sixth Annual Celebrations of Wild Idaho Rising Tide in Moscow & Sandpoint

March 31 & April 7 Anniversary Concerts Benefit Climate Activist Collective

Wild Idaho Rising Tide (WIRT) is celebrating its March 31, sixth anniversary as a regional, climate activist collective confronting the root causes and perpetrators of climate change through direct actions and locally organized solutions.  We invite and welcome every one of all ages to share this milestone at two Sixth Annual Celebrations of Wild Idaho Rising Tide.  These benefit concerts provided by five bands and solo musicians accompany potluck dinner and desert in Moscow, snacks in Sandpoint, beer and wine for purchase, dozens of raffle items donated by community members and businesses, and a background slide show of WIRT accomplishments.  Come and enjoy our yearly fund and action raising parties offering radical revelry for participants supporting relentless, volunteer WIRT activism among and in solidarity with frontline communities of fossil fuel resistance and an international, grassroots network of activists.

WIRT’s amazing members, friends, and allies eagerly anticipate lively musical and social gatherings between 7 pm and 12 midnight on Friday, March 31, in the 1912 Center Great Room at 412 East Third Street in Moscow, Idaho, and on Friday, April 7, in the Little Panida Theater, 300 North First Avenue (across the street from the WIRT office) in Sandpoint, Idaho.  Suggested, admission donations of $5 or more at the doors to these otherwise free, open, public events assist the dedicated work of WIRT and allies to banish new and expanded fossil fuel infrastructure from the Northwest.  Please join dirty energy resisters for a well-deserved, reinvigorating, wild evening full of shared camaraderie, spirited conversation, exuberant dancing, good food and drink, and live music of multiple genres, played by these talented, visiting, and resident songwriters and performers from Moscow, Sandpoint, and Spokane: Continue reading


Climate Justice Forum: Banished Northwest Fossil Fuel Infrastructure Projects 4-6-16

The Wednesday, April 6, 2016 Climate Justice Forum radio program hosted by Wild Idaho Rising Tide (WIRT) discusses proposed new and expansion fossil fuel infrastructure projects on the Columbia River and Oregon and Washington coasts that regional resistance has stalled and stopped, including two Grays Harbor, Washington crude oil terminals and the Gateway Pacific coal export facility at Cherry Point, Washington.  Broadcast on progressive, volunteer, community station KRFP Radio Free Moscow every Wednesday between 1:30 and 3 pm PDT, live at 90.3 FM and online, the show covers continent-wide climate activism and community opposition to extreme energy projects, thanks to the generous, anonymous listener who adopted program host Helen Yost as her KRFP DJ.

Climate Justice Forum: Paris & Seattle Protests, Portland Train Collision 12-14-15

The Monday, December 14, 2015 Climate Justice Forum radio program hosted by Wild Idaho Rising Tide (WIRT) features news about the final accord and accompanying demonstrations at the United Nations COP21 climate talks in Paris, France, protests at Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railway headquarters and in solidarity with Paris uprisings, both in Seattle, an action that shut down the Enbridge Line 9 tar sands pipeline in Ontario/Quebec, and a fuel truck and fossil fuel train collision in Portland, Oregon.  Broadcast on progressive, volunteer, community station KRFP Radio Free Moscow every Monday between 7:30 and 9:00 pm PST, live at 90.3 FM and online, the show covers continent-wide climate activism and community opposition to extreme energy projects, thanks to the generous, anonymous listener who adopted program host Helen Yost as her KRFP DJ.

Panhandle Paddle!

Panhandle Paddle Flyer

Organizing the first in a series of coordinated, region-wide, fall 2015 Flood the System actions and ongoing mobilization of frontline, inland Northwest communities impacted by fossil fuel incursions and unjust economic, social, and political conditions, Wild Idaho Rising Tide (WIRT) and allied activists in Sandpoint, Moscow, Spokane, and beyond are excited to announce and host the Panhandle Paddle on Saturday, August 29 [1]! After further WIRT outreach and education between 9 am and 1 pm at the Farmers’ Market at Sandpoint, WIRT members and friends are converging at 2 pm at City Beach Park in Sandpoint, Idaho, for music, speakers, refreshments, and on- and off-shore protests of Northwest fossil fuel transports and terminals and rail bridge expansion on Lake Pend Oreille. In the wake of four Flood the System slide shows and discussions in Idaho and Washington and parallel Montana initiatives, we are eager to “flood, blockade, occupy, and shut down the systems that jeopardize our future” [1-3].

Join in some summer fun on the water and beach to show Big Oil, King Coal, their railroad industry haulers, and government facilitators that north Idahoans will not stand for their reckless endangerment of our lives, communities, water, air, and climate, with their explosive Alberta tar sands and Bakken crude oil trains and their heavy, dusty Powder River Basin coal cars. Northwesterners have plenty to celebrate about our shared resistance, as dozens of proposals for new and expanded fossil fuel infrastructure falter and fall [4]. Please participate in these Panhandle Paddle activities: Continue reading

Support the Land Defenders Arrested on Monday at the Utah Tar Sands!

On Monday, July 21, about 80 climate justice land defenders peacefully expressed their First Amendment right to free speech, by staging a massive direct action at the site of U.S. Oil Sands’ tar sands strip mine at PR Springs in the Book Cliffs, Utah.  The protest that blocked mining facilities construction culminated a week-long direct action training camp held within two miles of the mine.  Participants of Climate Justice Summer Camp traveled from numerous organizations, states, and sovereign tribal nations to learn direct action skills and build networks.  These inspiring heroes left the comfort of their homes, the company of their families, and the security of their jobs to fight for the future of this beautiful, historical area.

Early in the morning, activists and supporters of Canyon Country Rising Tide, Peaceful Uprising, and Utah Tar Sands Resistance locked themselves to equipment, and a fenced storage cage around it, used to clear-cut and grade an area designated for the tar sands mining company’s processing plant.  Other protesters formed a physical blockade with their bodies, to halt construction work and to protect their locked-down comrades.  They hung and displayed banners off the cage that read: “You Are Trespassing on Ute Land” and “Respect Existence or Expect Resistance.” Continue reading

WIRT Newsletter: Upcoming & Rescheduled Events

Dear comrades,

Wednesday to Sunday, April 2 to 6: Mammoet Megaload Meetings

Wild Idaho Rising Tide (WIRT) and allies are postponing plans from tomorrow, Wednesday, March 26, until next week, April 2 to 6, to meet and offer presentations, as described in the March 20 WIRT newsletter, about the proposed Highway 95/200 Mammoet megaloads [1]. We are working hard to confront these monsters, but the Coeur d’Alene Idaho Transportation Department office did not respond to our public records request by Monday, as required by Idaho law. WIRT is rescheduling our Plummer and Sandpoint convergences and adding Coeur d’Alene and Moscow training sessions during next week and weekend, and will send a full report/announcement about the situation soon.

Tribal & Climate Activists Gathering about Mammoet Megaloads

* Wednesday, April 2, 5:30 to 7:30 pm: East Bonner County – Sandpoint Library Room 103-4, 1407 Cedar Street, Sandpoint, Idaho

* Friday, April 4, 5:30 to 7:30 pm: Benewah Wellness Center Room B, 1100 A Street, Plummer, Idaho

Direct Action Training Sessions for Keystone XL Pipeline/Mammoet Megaloads

* Saturday, April 5, 12 noon to 4 pm: Coeur d’Alene Library Community Room, 702 East Front Avenue, Coeur d’Alene, Idaho

* Sunday, April 6, 12 noon to 4 pm: The Attic, up the back stairs of 314 East Second Street, Moscow, Idaho

Continue reading

WIRT’s Third Year: Cause for Celebration!

During our third year as a direct action collective confronting the root causes of climate change by asserting direct actions and promoting locally organized solutions, WIRT has produced myriad protests, rallies, direct action workshops, solidarity journeys, potluck meetings, presentations, public comments, issue alerts, action reports, newsletters, radio shows, videos, and photos.  Expanding integration of our strategies and tactics with our friends among nine regional Rising Tide collectives and a dozen tribes has achieved coordinated, regional demonstrations of opposition to the fossil fuel extraction and and transportation foisted on the environmentally robust Northwest by explosive shale oil trains, dusty coal cars, toxic oil and gas wells, and colossal tar sands equipment, pipelines, refineries, and tankers.  In solidarity with frontline communities of resistance and our international, volunteer, grassroots network of activists, we will continue our steadfast defiance of the corporate and government forces of exploitation and death, in defense the ultimate, sacred dignity of the Earth, its life, and all humans.

Early in April 2013, two activists of newly formed Rising Tide Seattle successfully locked down inside the Canadian consulate in Seattle, Washington, demonstrating solidarity with other tar sands resistance struggles and bringing the total of brave anti-tar sands arrests and charges in four Northwest states to 20 over the prior two years.  Amongst the enduring angst of frontline Idaho and Montana residents over the 2011-12 unstoppable, regional passage of 350 enormous facilities modules of Imperial Oil’s Kearl Oil Sands Project, the mining operation commenced production in Alberta around WIRT’s second anniversary, despite delays and cost escalations.  Palouse region academics and activists welcomed three highly knowledgeable Alberta tar sands experts to the University of Idaho: award-winning author Andrew Nikiforuk, Pembina Institute program director Jennifer Grant, and industry veteran Don Thompson.  For Mr. Nikiforuk, WIRT and anti-megaload allies co-sponsored a book promotion open house at BookPeople of Moscow, a Washington State University workshop about dirty energy dilemmas, and a tour of the Highway 12 wild and scenic river/wildlands corridor in Idaho threatened by tar sands equipment transports.  But multiple WIRT activists held anti-tar sands signs in the back of the auditorium during Mr. Thompson’s presentation, and posed difficult, oppositional, audience questions.  As WIRT contemplated a statewide ballot measure banning fracking and waste injection wells, the Idaho legislature passed a bill requiring signatures of six percent of the registered voters in half of Idaho’s legislative districts, to qualify a citizen initiative or referendum for the ballot.  Idaho lawmakers also let any non-freeway routes in the state be designated for extra-heavy trucks weighing up to 129,000 pounds, with input from local highway jurisdictions and public hearings.  With other regional groups in mid-April, WIRT gratefully reached out to the Pullman community at the Earth Week Environmental Occupation of Terrell Mall on the Washington State University campus.  On the next Saturday, WIRT staffed a minimal booth at the Moscow Hemp Fest in East City Park.  At the Kenworthy Performing Arts Center in Moscow and 35 other locations on Earth Day, April 22, WIRT and anti-tar sands allies hosted a nationwide, simultaneous screening of the documentary Bidder 70  and a live-streamed conversation with Tim DeChristopher, the Utah climate activist recently released from federal prison, who stopped an unjust federal oil and gas lease auction.  We established a Twitter account and website events calendar to more actively involve WIRT members in our many initiatives.

In May 2013, WIRT honored the outstanding community spirit and service of core WIRT members and tar sands megaload blockaders Bill and Dianne French, as Moscow Renaissance Fair King and Queen, with Moscow Volunteer Peace Band march onto the East City Park grounds.  We also celebrated previous ‘Ren’ Fair royalty among our ranks with the fortieth annual fair parade.  On the next weekend, we traveled to Spokane, Washington, to give a guest speech about critical climate issues, educate our neighbors through an outreach booth, and enjoy some live music, tribal drumming, and round dances the Word to Your Mother event held in Riverfront Park.  Moscow climate activists also interviewed for two extensive articles in The Fig Tree about the regional megaload campaign and climate change.  Kinder Morgan withdrew its planned investment in the proposed Port Westward coal export facility in early May, after the ports of Grays Harbor and Coos Bay had similarly dropped plans since the previous August, thus halving the six originally planned coal ports across the Northwest.  During mid-month, we commenced our Moscow outreach every Saturday until November at the WIRT Moscow Farmers Market table, and threw a WIRT Activists House Party to stimulate creative ideas for Fearless Summer actions among core WIRT activists.  As a partner organization and board member, WIRT also participated in the Paradise Ridge field tour led by the Paradise Ridge Defense Coalition, exploring the implications for rare, native Palouse Prairie remnants and wildlife habitat of the Idaho Transportation Department’s proposed realignment and expansion of Highway 95 south of Moscow.  On the Thursday evening before Memorial Day, a southbound Edmonton-area Mullen Trucking driver, hauling an oversize Alaska drilling equipment box with a $10 online permit and following a pilot car with a height-indicator pole too closely, struck steel framework trusses and a cable of an Interstate 5 bridge near Mount Vernon, Washington.  The “functionally obsolete” span and three people in two vehicles collapsed into the icy Skagit River without the truck, ahead of tens of thousands of disrupted holiday vacationers.  Although mainstream media steered the conversation away from such inappropriate vehicles toward aging infrastructure replacement, the incident may have finally catalyzed Washingtonians toward resistance to fossil fuel extraction transports on their roads, in a state that has originated the bulk of tar sands megaloads.

June 2013 not only witnessed songwriter Roy Zimmerman’s Moscow performance premiere of his song co-written with Melanie Harby for WIRT, The Tide is Rising, but a robust, expansive, allied campaign against renewed oil and gas drilling in Payette County.  With Idaho Residents Against Gas Extraction (IRAGE) comrades, we coordinated Stop the Frack Attack, Idaho! protests at Idaho Department of Lands offices at Boise, Coeur d’Alene, Deary, Kamiah, Orofino, and Saint Maries, confronting the director outside the Boise headquarters about drilling and potential fracking of a natural gas well in the floodplain confluence of two water bodies, near a riparian wildlife refuge, upriver from a city water supply intake, and under state lands and rivers.  The continent-wide, early-June week of action grew into a month of action that caused the oil and gas development leasers and regulators at IDL to admit to allowing impending fracking in Idaho and to issue media counter-releases and public disinformation fact sheets.  WIRT traveled twice to Boise to demonstrate at the state agency and to educate the public about oil and gas and other dirty energy issues at the Community Progressive III convergence of community outreach booths and information workshops in Julia Davis Park.  Against three of four new well drilling permit applications over the next year, we wrote comments that IDL posted but dismissed, despite possible legal repercussions. Continue reading

Umatilla Ceremony at Halted Tar Sands Megaload in Pendelton, Oregon


Members of the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation (CTUIR) and friends gathered on December 3, 2013, in Pendleton, Oregon, to a hold ceremony at the site where the Omega Morgan “megaload” remains.

The Oregon Department of Transportation confirmed that freezing weather and last night’s snow storm have prevented the load from moving.

Elders and many young leaders from CTUIR came out to speak from their hearts about how this haul will threaten the values and traditions that they hold so dearly in the Columbia River Plateau. Continue reading