Bark announces HIKE THE PIPE!

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Hike the Pipe!
June 8-22, 2008
Mt. Hood National Forest
Press Event: Tuesday, June 10th
at the site of the proposed gas pipeline across the Clackamas River
Public Campout: Saturday, June 14th - Sunday, June 15th

HOOD HIKERS AGREE, NO LNG!
Concerned Oregonians announce plan to walk, climb and boat proposed 40-mile LNG pipeline route cutting through Mt. Hood National Forest to provide missing data to the public

Bark, the watchdog group of Mt. Hood forests, announces Hike the Pipe, an event to raise awareness of the threats to Oregon’s old-growth forests, scenic rivers, and hiking trails by the proposed pipeline connecting to liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminals on the coast. Bark joins a growing Oregonian resistance to the proposal. Across western Oregon citizens are uniting against building a 210-mile pipeline through public and private lands, more than half of which require the use of eminent domain.

Palomar, a subsidiary of Northwest Natural and TransCanada has proposed a pipeline route that crosses over steep slopes and will require miles of new road-building, adding to the 4,000 miles of crumbling roads already threatening Mt. Hood’s forests. As climate change impacts the acceleration of melting glaciers and snowpack, issues of sedimentation and landslide, exacerbated by increased infrastructure, have become a major risk to the public.

Home to a third of all Oregonians’ drinking water, years of agency mismanagement has left parts of Mt. Hood’s remaining intact ecosystems in great peril. “No American should ever have to be asked to risk their access to clean drinking water,” says Bark’s Program Director, Amy Harwood, “Especially not for foreign energy sources and corporate profit. This is an integral local response to the future of global energy stability.”

For ten years Bark has been a leader in putting the public back into public lands by encouraging people to get out into their national forest and monitor management decisions. A group of trained “groundtruthers” will be surveying the proposed route, including crossing several major creek and riverways. An invitation for all to hike will be extended to the public for the weekend of June 14th and 15th, halfway along the 40-mile route. Attendees will follow the pipeline route past the popular recreation area, Timothy Lake. On Saturday evening Bark will host a BBQ-style dinner and campfire with family-friendly entertainment to encourage dialogue about the pipeline, as well as sharing stories from the route.

Bark’s work focuses on transforming Mt. Hood National Forest into a place where natural processes prevail, where wildlife thrives and where local communities have a social, cultural, and economic investment in its restoration and preservation.

More information can be found at Bark’s website, www.bark-out.org or by calling 503-331-0374.