KITSAP GREAT GIVE & Saving Kitsap’s Natural Treasures by Nancy Sefton and KEC members

Salamander photo by Nancy Sefton

Salamander on big leaf maple – Newts and other amphibians deserve our help and have been during recent volunteer efforts near Arborwood development along a silt fence line that is preventing the amphibians from accessing their habitat

Did you ever find yourself “tsk-tsking” as you drove by those ugly forest clear cuts, a Kitsap County eyesore?  Several local woodlands have falling to the chain saws; with them goes the wildlife that once thrived there.  Does anyone care?  Thankfully, yes!

In mid 2018, a new group was formed: the Kitsap Environmental Coalition. 

Its main goal: to save our favorite natural areas.  Members alert the community about environmental issues, also bringing their concerns to local officials.

A great way to support KEC’s effort is participation in the Kitsap Great Give, a 24-hour day of giving on April 19th 2022 for several hundred local non-profits where your tax-free donation is boosted by a bonus pool by event sponsors and donors via Kitsap Community Foundation. Early giving opened on April 1st, and donations can also be made by phone to Kitsap Community Foundation at (360) 698-3622 on behalf of Kitsap Environmental Coalition, and/or fill out your mailer just received to support KEC and other organizations.

At present, the KEC is concerned with a new push toward development that threatens our green spaces. The Puget Sound region is struggling with a growing population and subsequent demand for more housing.  With eyes focused on Kitsap County, ideally situated a short ferry ride from Seattle, how can we protect our cherished wild places and wildlife?

The KEC’s goals have broadened with a growing, active membership and a determination to protect the natural features we treasure most.  The organization maintains a website and Facebook page, meets with county commissioners and staff, alerts members to take action on important environmental issues, and holds monthly meetings (via Zoom during the pandemic).

Hopefully, sometime this year the KEC will again hold regular meetings featuring environmental films followed by lively discussions. Thought-provoking newsletters are regularly distributed to members.

Already, the group has played a major role in:

  • banning glyphosate spraying on selected county properties and roadsides
  • planting evergreen trees and clearing scotch broom
  • advocating for the Trust Land Transfer program which will save the Eglon/Rose Point Forest for our community.
    Plateau section showing destruction from clear cutting of Pt. Gamble Forest Heritage Park, Poulsbo, Washington March 2021

KEC members naturally concern themselves with clear-cutting, which ravages our forest ecosystems.  Once the land is bare, fast-growing Scotch broom takes over and prevents the establishment of new trees.  The group thus advocates for a moratorium on clear-cutting in our county and on all Washington State public lands.

Currently, the KEC meets on Zoom, usually on the 3rd Wednesday of each month.  Check the website for information.

For many years, another group, the Great Peninsula Conservancy, has taken a different approach; it purchases and saves large forested tracts throughout our county, thanks to generous support by its many members.  Its special environmental education program helps youngsters experience nature’s wonders.

Yes, our county still has forests; so did Seattle, once.  If enough of us care, the natural resources we treasure today won’t be gone tomorrow.  Only the support and involvement of folks like you and me can keep our county green.

Thank you in advance for your support to KEC during the 2022 Kitsap Great Give.

KEC logo and Kitsap Great Give web link