You’re going to need to shovel yourselves out by Thursday. Our longtime friend and supporter Peter Grubb of ROW Adventures will be at the Iron Horse at noon to talk about the Highway 12 megaloads controversy.
Peter is one of three courageous plaintiffs in the legal battle to force Idaho Department of Transportation to abide by its own rules and allow public input before permitting “overlegal” truck loads up the Lochsa River corridor.
Four super huge truck loads (“SHT loads” as coined by our friends at Idaho Conservation League) are proposed by ConocoPhillips in order to deliver massive oil equipment from the Port of Lewiston to a refinery in Billings. But this is merely the proverbial camel’s nose under IDT’s tent. Imperial Oil / Exxon Mobil has some 207 SHT loads proposed to take equipment from Lewiston, through Montana, to the massive tar sands oil development in Alberta. There is worry that the scenic Lochsa River byway will turn into a permanent “high and wide” industrial corridor.
Because of the connection to the tar sands project, the Highway 12 issue has international environmental implications. But the problems are acutely local for Peter, who is the owner and operator of the popular Riverdance Lodge along the highway. The slow rolling traffic backups caused by the SHT loads will create a safety hazard and huge inconvenience to Peter’s guests and his business.
Peter, his Lochsa River neighbors, and his Advocates for the West lawyers have been fighting goliath, just to get a fair hearing. They’ve won their legal challenges so far, and they have earned a full-blown evidentiary hearing scheduled late next week in Boise.
Hope you can join us Thursday to learn more. And to give Peter a well-deserved round of applause.
UPDATE: See followup on the meeting here. With video!