From the January 2010 Idaho Observer:

Yukon to Yellowstone: another way to steal private property

by Anne Wilder-Chamberlain>

On the homepage, visitors are informed about how the pika (“round fur balls with big ears and no tails”) of the Yellowstone to Yukon region, is one of “a growing number of species beginning to feel the pressures of climate change…specifically adapted to their favorite food sources – the grasses, shrubs and lichens that grow between the rocks on mountain slopes, as average annual temperatures increase, the vegetation on which pikas depend for food may be maturing earlier or shifting location on the mountainsides. Hotter summer temperatures might also stress the little animals…”

Heart strings are pulled on tree huggers worldwide who do not realize that the climate, which has been cooling since 1999, will have to start warming again before the pika might have to adapt to grass and lichen somewhere else, and like the other “threatened” animal extolled by the Natural Resources Defense Council, the polar bear - whose numbers in fact are increasing according to Inuit elders that live with them - the plight of the pika is likely overblown.

“As the most intact mountain ecosystem remaining on Earth, the Yellowstone to Yukon region offers the kind of vast and resilient landscape that species and processes will need to survive the coming changes,” reports “Encompassing 463,000 square miles and spanning 15 degrees of latitude (2,000 mi/3,200km), the region is uniquely situated to serve as a refuge for biodiversity in western North America. As the keeper of a vision for this extensive, globally significant landscape, the Yellowstone to Yukon Conservation Initiative (Y2Y) is working to anticipate and, if necessary, realign its programs to respond to the impacts of climate change.” The Y2Y “was founded on the principles of conservation biology, specifically the promotion of large, core protected areas surrounded by buffer zones and connected by corridors that enable the successful existence and movement of a wide range of species…we must mitigate the likely impacts of climate change on both human communities and natural systems by reducing greenhouse gas emissions and… protect[ing] and connect[ing] large landscapes to allow organisms to adapt to changing conditions. Large landscapes, especially those within mountains… provide the best chances for plant and animal species to survive changing conditions.”

Overview of Y2Y impacts

North Idahoan Vern Westgate, in his essay, “Yukon to Yellowstone: Concern is our Animal Cousins,” looks at the picture differently. His concern is about the impact these environmental activists have on our constitutionally protected private property rights.

“They come at us under the guise of ‘fixing’ an issue by creating a ‘local’ or ‘regional’ body to control individual property rights. The error in their thinking is that they are promoting the ‘common good’ in the same manner and for the same reasons that the United Nations attacks private property,” he wrote.

“Environmental activist groups almost always transition from nice people with good motives into intrusive, controlling bureaucrats. Y2Y (Yukon to Yellowstone) impacts my backyard.

“Here is an overview:

  • The Y2Y (Yukon-to-Yellowstone) project is a 2,000 mile long corridor from near the Arctic circle to Yellowstone National Park.
  • As part of that plan, environmental activists want to ‘contain’ my neighbors, me and other citizens of Idaho.
  • Their plans include taking control of 9.3 million acres in Idaho.
  • Their outward objective is to make this a nice place for bears, bugs, wolves and ugly undergrowth by keeping humans out.
  • They want us to stop digging up minerals, picking up gems, logging trees and recreating in the beautiful outdoors.

“Idahoans want to continue to carefully manage this land, create jobs, pay for schools and enjoy the mountains and forests of our beautiful state. We live here, most of them don’t. We care about our state and are good stewards of the lands. We’ve been doing this right for years.”

Banff National Park, Canada

The Y2Y is a non-profit organization based in Canmore, Alberta, with a satellite office in Banff, and has operations in both Canada and the U.S. They work with over 200 partner organizations, businesses and agencies in pursuit of their goals.

Banff National Park is a key part of the largest contiguous block of protected areas within the entire Y2Y region. Park managers recently published a draft management plan in November, 2009 to update the previous plan, published in 1997 which focused on improving ecological integrity and connectivity. The current draft emphasizes increasing visitation by two percent per year, which Y2Y commented negatively on in its 11/30/09 response to the plan. Y2Y does not want “livelihood” or people even mentioned in the Banff Park Management Plan.

Mountain Culture at The Banff Centre, home of the Banff Mountain Film Festival expanded its suite of environmental programming in 2008 to include initiating collaboration with stakeholders who share a commitment to action on climate change. It partners with organizations that share common values focused on mountain culture and the environment, including sponsors such as National Geographic, Patagonia, Mountain Equipment Co-op, and Y2Y.

The Nature Conservancy (TNC)

The Summer, 2007 edition of Nature Conservancy magazine contains an article, “The Last Stand, Conserving the World’s Largest Intact Forest.” In it TNC declares its intention in alliance with industry, First Nations, and conservation groups, to set aside half of the world’s largest intact forest, Canada’s Boreal forest, which occupies 2,300,000 square miles and about 2/3 of Canadian land. Included is the idea that it is more effective to prevent degradation of the natural world from the proposed Mackenzie Gas Pipeline, a 750-mile long natural gas pipeline the length of the Mackenzie River which would run from the Beaufort Sea in Alaska to Northern Alberta, rather than try to fix it after damage has occurred.

While the undertaking “to safeguard natural and traditional cultural resources with carefully planned sustainable development on the rest” sounds reasonable, TNC, a multi-billion dollar “non-profit” organization with links to the Rockefeller banking system (see The I. O., 01/14/08) has a record of pushing legislation that makes private property unusable by owners, purchasing it at pennies on the dollar, and then exploiting it however TNC sees fit. In light of Canadian and U.S. policies aimed at shifting to cleaner fuel sources and reducing reliance on oil imported from overseas, and the unwinnable war in Afghanistan to obtain a pipeline there, it is anticipated that the Mackenzie Gas Project as well as the Alaska Gas Pipeline will be required in order to meet continental energy demands in the future.

Unintended Consequences

Westgate writes,“Articles [that] environmental activists publish and promote often present ideas that seem to be good, caring, sharing ones. We all want this earth to be a clean, beautiful place. However, they rarely address ‘unintended consequences’. For example:

  • Restricting farmers and ranchers restricts the food supply.
  • Restricting loggers hurts logging, equipment sales and service, construction, printing, packaging and myriad other industries.
  • Loggers clear underbrush and reduce fires. Environmental activists claim it’s good to let underbrush build up and burn. Intense fires are expensive to fight, destructive and dangerous.
  • Environmental activists have reduced mining to a shadow of what it was and should be
  • Thousands of good jobs moved offshore.
  • Mineral prices are higher.
  • Environmental issues and impact have moved to places with lax, or no, enforcement.
  • These policies operate to advance the economic preconditions for the set up of global governance.
  • Natural resource industry taxes paid for our schools and for our care for forests, rivers and wildlife.

The overall impact of many, if not most, environmental causes are that the biodiversity that benefits from understory management is harmed. For a positive example of environmentalism done right, see what was accomplished at Here you see what can be done [using native flora] by a private property owner without government intervention.”

Bottom Line

The real goal is to drive people into Smart Growth zones and implement the Wildlands Project (The I.O.,12/21/09). An insidiously wide range of environmental activists, NGOs (non-government organizations), government agencies and others are working for globalists’ Agenda 21 goals. All are on track for limiting, then eliminating, private property and liberty.

“A continuing acceleration of this ‘change’ is in the air. I’ve given you a brief look at what environmental activists are doing in my backyard,” says Westgate. “What are they up to in your region?”

It takes little critical thought to tie these environmental activities to the programs of the United Nation’s Agenda 21/Sustainable Development. International policies are being implemented by our federal government in disregard of constitutional limitations on power. Debt-ridden states and counties are falling over themselves while rushing for federal money to implement the “global to local” restructure of our society.

As a consequence of continuing economic and environmental forces behind globalization, the American philosophical, legal and political recognition of each individual’s inalienable right to his own life, liberty and property is being sacrificed. It is time to turn that around.

Note: Next month The I.O. will look more closely at Smart Growth and how it is being implemented. For more information, go to:

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