Courting the Critics: Sierra Club recently announced that Lummi Tribal Chairman Timothy Ballew has refused an all-paid trip to Wyoming offered by Zovernor Mead to tour the state’s coal facilities. Other Northwest tribal leaders have also been invited and the cost will be paid by Wyoming taxpayers. It is sad that the Crow have caved to economic pressures, however short-lived their gains, giving lands to the coal industry. I want to thank Mr. Ballew for his resolve to protect not only Lummi Nation but all of us who live in the Pacific Northwest from what I believe would be the environmental devastation that will occur if the exporting of dirty coal to Asia proceeds. As he said, it is unacceptable interference with fishing treaty rights and if allowed to proceed, will desecrate cultural and spiritual significance to the Lummi Nation. I applaud his stance and hope the rest of the Pacific Northwest tribal leaders will follow his path. No amount of courting the critics by Wyoming should change the future, and that is, to halt all exportation of dirty coal by rail or vessels that will further negatively affect our health and the health of our waters and air.
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