Conversations With Chase Gunnell 052718

Tuesday, May 29th


Transcript - Not for consumer use. Robot overlords only. Will not be accurate.

Welcome conversations tiger host Gregor they just an extra time of the here this weekend joining me this segment is chasing denials and I said that's threats. Communications director for conservation northwest of morning to morning extra me on actually is voted out here in person at the best. Join us as we look at the issues that affect us here at home and our community and across the nation specifically though this time in the greater Pacific northwest. Because of the cast Cady region it would almost. There simply isn't enough tax money ever available to handle all the things necessary to keep our earth healthy. And safe we relied on the efforts of people committed to keeping a watchful line being the wants to keep us all healthy and chief long term. It's groups like conservation northwest in the network of donors and volunteers that make all possible. Find out what the mission is your little bit what you guys do let's start with a bit of background first coaches Tulsa. Out conservation northwest's conservation northwest is a regional organization based here in Seattle we were founded in Bellingham in 1989. And we worked to keep the northwest wild. We attacked wild lands we connect habitat and we restore native wildlife we do that and Washington and British Columbia Canada no news that we how many people were talking about like in the office how many people on board there. So we're an organization that really prides itself from being apart of some of the communities who work across places like eastern Washington's we've got a staff here in Seattle about ten people. We've got about another ten people spent all over some of the rural areas of our State's small towns like all Mac and called those walls up in the British Columbia because while lift recognize our borders and support and do some work up there as well. Overall we've got about twenty full time employees and about six contractors that support workers were also fairly large staff and organization of our size and we're deeply imbedded in the places where we work. I'm considered a public. Which you said animals don't understand these imaginary lines that we paint the senate this then send real time left. But when you're working with BC. But the whole of the country in this got to be a hole the process to getting money to post up end up working as a leverage ago. Well I would first to say that it's incredibly important some of our biggest successes have come through working across that border and working with our partners up in Canada but that partnership is what makes it possible. Canadians don't want Americans coming and telling them what to do with their wildlife and natural resource as we don't want Canadians telling us what to do that Cisco and how society works that we it's really important it. We work with local staffers and local organizations September's Colombia for when wins and shared progress. The main thing okay cool and I imagine there's got to be some tricky points today to make it all work out just right but at the same time we're talking grizzlies crossing borders and about so there is but I would say that summer Canadian partners assortment of people here in Washington and Pacific northwest they deeply value of their natural heritage and it's in their best interest just like it's in ours to conserve it for future generations so strong partners there. Correct me if I'm wrong but it's like people who are interest in conservation or maybe a little less confrontational. About conservation and but I might. As the outside in my neck at that right. It's events you know this is like any other issue there's a lot of different ways to approach it there's a lot of different strategies and tactics and and ways to approach wildlife and what wilderness conservation in general. Our approach is to be collaborative. We try to find partners agencies and find innovative solutions that benefit both people and animals in and what we found this through that process and through that approach. Bringing people together not dividing them apart. Re able to reach some sustainable durable progress that lasts for a long time and that's important place said the north west like it's important for. Paul Tressel who I want to get more from. Okay now we know what the geography of this looks like a little bit Tulsa but the people that are I assume that all the money is. Either raised or through grants or something how do you get your funding for the people that are clear donor pool. SO as an organization it's been working in our region for thirty years were deeply dependent on the generosity of washingtonians. Canadians Pacific north westerners. Without our supporters with our members our work wouldn't be possible. We have about 4000 regular members people that pay every year to be a part of our work keeping the northwest wild they are tremendous and power what we do. We have a pool of really excellent philanthropist from our region it support a lot of our work through major gifts. Some of those folks come from big corporations like Microsoft or Boeing Starbucks. And a lot of folks from other industries around the region and other companies that support work because maybe they like getting outside into the cascades and hiking and maybe enjoy watching wildlife. Maybe just wanna know that we have a really special thing here in the Pacific northwest and wanna keep the wild for the future. And like you said we also got a lot of support from some great foundations and grants in our region so we have a diverse funding pool but a lot of it comes from right here at home in the Pacific northwest. Because of challenges of that I'm a music guy so I think about when things changed when he years ago were you to start recording everything at home and so we artist that could afford to get. Into a big expenses to get to make their own music they gave us all hon more horses people watching TV numbers at more choices. Just because there's a ton of philanthropy here in the northwest world challenges of trying to get some of that money when there's so many people competing. It can be a challenge you right you know it's a diverse landscape with a lot of groups during a lot of great work by what we look at as sort of an opportunity August. This complicated landscape all these great groups all these new mediums to get the word out about our work. Yes it's a lot of different people asking for the same pool the pie but there's ways to make that I bigger through your chance to your communications student messages to your social media through video and I think we're seeing a lot more people whether they're just hikers are. People who live in Seattle and stare up at the cascades and Olympics. They wanna support these things and keep them around keep a while so. It's a bigger pie every day ticket conservation. And W dot ORG. Tests get a feel for just how you're using video how you're more play the making of a multi media experience just visiting. The website alone at the very compelling new mute receipt wildlife and animals in ways that you're like meet the compelled to help so again it's conservation northwest. Dot ORG. I'm curious what your background is how you got involved in this. Yeah I'm a Seattle native I grew up here in the Pacific northwest moved outside the city when I was younger and I was really lucky to grow up in a family that really valued and retired teacher and Pacific northwest we go hiking fishing gathering twisters in mushrooms. Little bit hunting a little bit of mountain climbing. And just spending that time in the outdoors and growing up in a city that was so close these wild places we have such an exceptional opportunity here in Seattle on in the Pacific northwest where we can have our city and we can have a wild mountains and forests and deserts right there just a few hours away. He really instilled in me a passion to protect these places and use my professional skills to keep them around for future generations and that's exactly conservation northwest does it's been a great fit for me and something I'm deeply passionate views of church is a few times I wonder what your connection with the indigenous people that were here before. We have to settle. How do you have a connection with the local tribes and are you working together. I'm so glad you asked that so country's northwest is transition for a long time has worked very closely with the number of native American and first nations tribes here and Pacific northwest. We see them is vital partners for work. Groups like the call broken federated tribes over an eastern Washington and Yakima nation in the cascades in and also up in eastern Washington. Groups like Colombian nation and that too late weapons to Obama's tribe of Indians in western Washington many other excellent partners. Among the sovereign tribal nations here in Washington as well as British Columbia some of their indigenous knowledge. Their heritage. What they've learned over generations fro living alongside some of these species of plants and animals this is really exceptional stuff that compliments. Science and conservation incredibly well and I think our organization as well as others. Can always do but. Better job in increasing job of of partnering with the spokesman something the conservation northwest in particular has focused on for a long time and we're seeing real results ball for our partners in the if American community as well as for our efforts in the greater community as a whole ethos amendment says so cool to like recognize the the entire reason for what it is really cool. A part of altars were talking about publicly people look through and a year which you can be working with the has so we have a couple programs that are really dependent on the back power of volunteers. Our biggest one is our citizen wildlife monitoring project we work with over a hundred volunteers a year people that are hiking back country skiing snow showing you know spending time in the woods. We train them to be citizen scientists to help. Cool Ogg manner assistant research for rare and endangered wildlife like wolverines are wolves. No maybe these are folks might go hiking and a weakened anyway they can go out and decent snow tracking and looking for tracks along I ninety to help inform wildlife crossing project or go out and set up a camera and helped document the recovery of wolverines in the north cascades. We have about a hundred people a year that participate in the program. And we have other programs to restore. Habitat around I ninety at some point passer we're working on some wildlife crossings with the state so as those crossings turn from construction site back and habitat. Those folks throughout their planning native plants and shrubs to bring that area back to life which is different to that I'm very excited about this that they I ninety wildlife cores or campaign it's something that we've seen on the news for years now about building effectively a big. Why ridge. Over. I ninety's but we're animals can traverse without having to cross on the actual highway itself that's exactly right it's going to be the biggest wildest crossing in North America when it's done but what's so neat about this project is it's not just one crossing their several under crossings are party complete an in use by animals from now to smaller animals like hikers. There's going to be too large well if over crossings when it's done. And the first of which which you may have seen in others may have seen just Isa so Kwame pastors have been construction site several large arches. Those are going to be a foundation that first wildlife under trusting in its coast be done in October of this year some very exciting. That's amazing to be able to see that type of results after seeing some images of it and just like concepts over years. This is probably question you get a lot but I'm very curious about it. How do you inform the animals the wildlife this is working across don't cross where it's dangerous cross where we built a thing for you well other in the crossing signs yeah they obviously read obviously. Years of science have gone into these projects so we we like to tell people that we don't just throw upper bridge when in Italy so. Conservation northwest and partners that the Department of Transportation washed. The US Forest Service and other partners have been doing wildlife monitoring in this area to figure out where the animals moving where they trying to cross the freeware or animals and vehicles. Colliding and actually we have a project of mine and wildlife watch where. If you see him animal long 990 or if you happen to collide with a deer elk or other species you can actually report that an and that data in forms where these crossings are. We're going to be located. So after about ten years of data gathering. They have found certain sites related to geography or just the migration patterns of animals tends to have them crossing in a few certain locations. At those locations are where either under crossings or expanded Covert beat the smallest type of crossing in this whole project or the larger wildlife bridges would be built. And then in between all of those crossings they're high fence which helps funnel the animals in a specific crossings and with Sony particularly with animals like deer now. No these animals migrate seasonally they might spend the summer up in the cascades and might spend the winner down in the valleys. They use the same paths each year and a mother how well my teacher fall on her calf where to go on each migration. And we'll see over time these animals using these crossings year after year which is Sony keeps animals safe and it keeps motorists say it's no one wants to hit a deer elk and actually that costs about 4500 dollars per collisions so. To big deal it's something we want a boy and keep both animals and people say there's really have the data that's fantastic stuff just real quick just a few seconds left you know people can donate or they can volunteer we're going to conservation and W dot orgy but. Writing a letter to editor what's the path. Yeah so we wanna continue to get the word out about our work and some of our programs restore endangered wildlife right here in the Pacific northwest there's a lot of species in great causes around the country and around the world but we're focused here in our region. People can help get word out through volunteering through taking action on our web saying maybe contacting a legislator. But writing an inner letter to editors agree way to. Show your support for conservation in a local media and it's read by thousands of people that someone would like to do that we'd be happy to assist you talked about topics that you care about. It than an hour. It's divided all the conservation in W dot ORG. Chase you know thanks much for joining us thank you.