First Cascadia Congress

cascadia solstice rainbow pride

1st Cascadia Bioregional Congress: Proceedings – July 25-28 1986 The Evergreen State College Olympia, Washington

by the South Sound Bioregional Network

[Full PDF of Pamphlet]

An Introduction to Bioregionalism

A bioregion is a life region whose rough boun dries are determined by changes in flora, fauna, water, climate, geology and in the human cultures shaped by these characteristics. Bioregionalism is an awareness that bioregions are whole systems comprised of sets of diverse, integrated natural subsystems, and that human culture and society must work in harmony with the bioregion in order to be sustainable.  

The Cascadia Bioregion is characterized by evergreen-covered mountains towering over deep waters fed by clear streams filled with salmon. It includes most of western Oregon, western Washington, and soutlwestern British Columbia. As with all bioregions, the boundaries are soft, reflecting the naturally dynamic qualities of all life.

Cascadia Bioregional Congress

In late July, 1986, over 100 ecologically-oriented people from throughout the Cascadia Bioregion gathered at The Evergreen State College in Olympia, Washington for the first Cascadia Bioregional Congress. The purpose was to establish a congress of peers working to realize an ecologically grounded and socially equitable basis for life and community in Cascadia.

This was a participatory meeting of those who wished to help shape the future of our bioregion; a decision-making congress rather than an educational conference. Participants came as representatives of a watershed, town, species of plant or animal, environmental group, or any other inhabitant of Cascadia. They were asked to look beyond themselves, and examine what is at stake for the dwellers of Cascadia.

Congress Structure

The structure of the Congress included plenary meetings of all participants, and smaller working sessions in Committees and Forums. The committees met for four 2-hour sessions to prepare documents examining the underlying philosophies and values, desired goals and proposed action strategies for their issue areas. Forums met for two 2-hour sessions o identify their common concerns, and prepare any documents they felt were needed.

These documents were then presented to the Congress as a whole during plenary session. If the wording of a document was fully consensed upon during the plenary session, it became a Resolution of the Congress. If a document was generally agreed to, yet not completely endorsed, it became a Statement of the Congress. The high number of Resolutions in these proceedings speaks well of the positive vision for Cascadia shared by Congress participants.

North American Bioregional Congress

Cascadia has now joined the Ozarks and Great Lakes bioregions in convening an actual deliberative congress. Many other bioregional gatherings occur regularly throughout the North American continent, culminating every two years in the North American Bioregional Congress.

Proceedings from the flrstNABC, held in the Ozarks in 1984, are available from the Bioregional Project, Box 3, Brixey, MO 65618. NABC II was held in the Great Lakes bioregion in 1986, and the proceedings are available from lfurt Publishing, Box 1010, Forestville, CA95436.

The third North American Bioregional Congress is currently being plannedfor August of 1988 at Paradise Valley, north of Vancouver, BC. For more information, write NABC III, Box 69004, Station K, Vancouver, BC V5K 4W3.

Local Hosts

The first Cascadia Bioregional Congress was hosted by Greenet, a student group at the Evergreen State College, and the South Sound Bioregional Network, a community-based group active with waste management, old growth forestry and community communications issues.

Those most active with the Cascadia Bioregional Congress were:

  • Peter Moulton
  • Rusty Post
  • Bill Fiorilli
  • Kate Crockett
  • Rebecca Lowe
  • Rhys Roth
  • Dave “Zoom” Newhouse
  • Joe Craigin

Spread the Word

Dissemination of the information contained in these procealings is encouraged. Therefore, rights are granted to private individuals and nonprofit organizations to copy and share reports and statements from this publication. Source credit should be included, and a copy sent to the South Sound Bioregional Network, Box 27 l2,Olympia, wA98507.

Page 1



Grassroots democracy and community building involves people getting together to take responsibility for making the decisions that affect their lives in the places where they live and work. This can best be accomplished by groups of people within small areas such as communities and watersheds, with similar interests and issues, meeting face-to-face. politics is a holistic process involving all aspects of our lives; democracy is the touchstone of the kind of politics we wish to create.

Democracy depends on community building because people need to form bonds between each other in order to make decisions together. Communities empower, nurture, support and educate people. They provide opportunities for people to work together and build a common, sustainable culture. Community- building depends on individual development among all members of the community. This process relies on open, non_ manipulative communication that unites individuals and gives them a shared focus and vision.


  • Analyze our values and actions
  • Appreciate our successes and integrity
  • Admit our errors
  • Seek out our common personal histories
  • Take actions that create win/win situations, as well as taking risky actions, to sustain the movement
  • Intentionally involve all segments of society such as sexes, classes and, races
  • Develop regional and sub-regional networks
  • Tolerance for and valuing diversity
  • Empower people and set up mechanisms to maximize their own initiative
  • Do service that embodies our values and develop activities that strengthen people’s relationship with the earth
  • Share information without offending
  • Incorporate bioregionalism into education
  • Learn nurturing techniques of conflict resolution
  • Embody a sense of fellowship, inspiration and play
  • Work toward improvement of community safety net
  • Maximize local and democratic control of our economic lives as workers and consumers
  • Promote physical forms and structures that facilitate cooperation, sharing and, harmony amongst people and between people and the natural environment
  • Encourage the recognition of arts of all forms as a way of community-building


Why Resolutions – or – Why are We Here?

The purpose of these resolutions is to actualize them in our personal fives and create a common focus for people at the Congress to include in the everyday actions of their lives. A secondary purpose is to share them with others in the bioregional movement. We encourage people to use them as a basis for the creation of statements, which can be used for outreach to the general public.

Plans to Reconvene

Local Congresses will meet over the next year and maintain communications with each other. Regional Congress will meet the following year.

Bioregional Guideline Map

We suggest that a committee of the Cascadia Bioregional Congress be formed for the creation of a set of informational maps; made up of overlays including the following elements:

  • Landforms (geology)
  • Water elements (watersheds, drainages)
  • Air movements (flow patterns)
  • Soils
  • Plant life resources
  • Animal life resources
  • Population

These maps should not be a set of .boundaries, but guidelines of the Cascadia Bioregion. The overlapping of these characteristics should help distinguish true ‘natural’ guidelines. These maps would help distinguish common interest and bring forth a focus for understanding of the Cascadia Bioregion.

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Whereas, since the modern human economy up until now has largely ignored ecological realities, as bioregionalists we believe that the economic activities must be clearly in sustainable alignment with ecological systems and directed in a humane and just fashion towards providing for both the survival and life-enhancing needs of current and future inhabitants of the Earth.

Overriding all other principles, we promote the consciousness and balance between ecological sustainability, self-reliance, economic democracy and responsibility to the whole web of life.


hereas, the Earth and its resources are the common heritage of all life on the planet we promote policies of land use and access to resources that reflect and further the practice of trusteeship and stewardship. We promote an economy, which should be self-regulating, and self-regenerating, and consistent with promoting the web of life, modeled after and in alignment with the Earth.


Whereas, over-centralized ownership and control underlie most current economic processes, thus leading to disenfranchisement of large sections of populations from productive processes, and from the self determination of systems that effect their lives: we promote and encourage individual, community and regional self-reliance and autonomy, wherever possible, in meeting survival and life- enhancing needs. We encourage a sense of responsibilities to the well-being of the region.


Whereas, cooperative, worker-owned, democratic forms of economic activity promote trusteeship and stewardship in the production and service process, and whereas, the current economic process exploits social classes, sexes, races, ages and other oppressed groups of people: we promote economic forms of production, Distribution and ownership grounded in a social contract on consent, justice, and ecological consciousness.


Whereas, the concentration and centralization of capital, resources and industrial productive capacity as occurs, for example, in multinational corporations, reduces the ability of most of the Earth’s inhabitants to meet their basic needs: we promote the exportation of resources only when a bioregion’s own needs have been met, the equitable redistribution of resources regionally and globally, and the minimalization of consumptive patterns in a way that empowers the self-reliance of individuals, communities and regions worldwide without jeopardizing sustainability.


The community is responsible for seeing that basic human needs are met foo4 shelter, health care, education and a spiritually nurturing environment human beings need fulfilling work and vocations of choice. Basic survival needs should be the concern of the larger community as well as the individual and not be dependent upon the selling of our labor. We are working toward an economy where the individual has an opportunity for a democratic and holistic involvement in work processes and the right to the full fruis of her or his labor. The future economy shall provide work that is socially useful and ecologically sound. It should reward what has been traditionally been unpaid labor, such as parenting, homemaking, care of elders and childcare. The job structure should recognize the human needs for leisure time, recreation and community life.


  • Establish a Local Exchange Trading Systerns (IETS) task force
  • Support “Oregon Economic Conversion Initiative”
  • Establish a worker-owned communication cooperative
  • Establish a locally based voluntary tax system
  • Reform current tax structure toward economy, simplicity and equity; reversing, recirculation and redistributing the concentration of wealth
  • Support the current proposal before the Governors’ Council and Mayors’ Council sending more taxes back to communities
  • Develop an economic model for urban places similar to Rodale’s Economic Regeneration Project and The Homegrown Economy by David Morris
  • Develop regional cooperative banks as sources for technical assistance and loan monies to enterprises consistent with the First Cascadia Bioregional Congress principles and goals with the capacity to advise on local community economic Development
  • Develop regional or local networks of interacting and interlinking, worker-owned cooperatives and self-managed firms which mutually support each other.

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Technology shall be appropriate when the use of that technology minimizes interference with the physical and spiritual well-being of humans and other species,
minimizes depletion of the non-renewable energy base, contributes to the further development and reestablishment of  species in their rightful ecosystem, is responsible to future inhabitants of the earth and bioregion and is harmonious with the natural and human history of the region. 

Small-scale, decentralized energy sources and conservation are to be encouraged as beneficial to the self-reliance of both the individual and the bioregion. 

Nuclear energy, owing to its high cenhalization, unsolved waste disposal problems, and huge future ecological and economic debt, is not an option and should be discontinued.


  • Move toward increased bioregional self-reliance in energy, food production, fisheries and forestry. 
  • Educate ourselves to be wise users of technology
  • Technology should enhance the quality of life, encourage personal growth, and discourage consumerism
  • Appropriate technology should support greater regional autonomy


  • My usage doesn’t jeopardize others’ enjoyment well-being and health, including other species (special emphasis on mortality)
  • True replacement cost(s) taken into account
  • Doesn’t violate inherent aesthetic sensibility
  • Durability and/or simplicity of design
  • Transition – phasing out of “bad” technologies for “good”
  • Evaluating en-tropic properties of technologies
  • Educating people as to quality of life issues vs quantity
  • Pursue appropriate technologies applicable to 3rd world countries
  • Centralized “heavy” technologies may be inappropriate
  • Local labor, local materials = local resource utilization
  • Promote cyclic and sustainable technologies
  • Future focus and stewardship
  • Concern for human and natural history of the place (which were sustainable) leaves behind planned obsolescence in favor of planned durability, information value added quality assurance
  • Promotes “right livelihood’

Implementation within Specific Technologies

Solid Waste

  • – Home Recycling
  • – Home Gardening
  • – Ban Styrofoam or make it biodegradable, or
  • it adequately with “value subtracted tax”


  • Bullet train from Vancouver, BC to Eugene
  • Gas tax to support light rail
  • Hitchhiker stop zones
  • Lower percentage of land devoted to parking
  • (l0% vs 35%),  limit private cars in downtown areas, promote peripheral park & rides and ride-sharing
  • Oppose metro bus tunnel in Seattle
  • Facilitate bicycle access, improve bike trails, encourage integration of cycling with mass transit


  • Encourage block rates that discourage energy waste (home energy budget in kilowats)
  • Goal of having majority of homes generating their own power
  • Preference for solar., then geothermal and hydropower
  • Highest use of non-replacement fuels
  • Phase out all nuclear power in the bioregion

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Medicine and Healing

  • Education for health and diet
  • Funding for holistic medical education
  • Funding for nutritional research
  • Insurance should pay for “soft” medicine use
  • Take personal responsibilities
  • Stop subsidizing tobacco growers
  • Ban cigarette advertising
  • Encourage nonviolent, noninvasive technologies
  • Encourage freedom of choice in medical techniques and technologies
  • Decentralize medicine

Building Technology

  • Homes clustered around courtyards, row houses sharing backyards, tools, recycle bins, and cars
  • Concentrate offices in cities to encourage mass transit
  • Ban conversion of agricultural to developed lands, i.e. support farmland (and wetland) preservation
  • Discourage buildings over six stories
  • Wood frame houses, wooden structures are appropriate for earthquake zones
  • All-solar homes with conservation steps
  • zoning and tax breaks

Weapons Technology

– Bilateral disarmament
– Local, regional nuclear-free zones
– Reallocate R&D money from weapons to energy
light rail, etc.
– Oppose SDI
– Ban germ and chemical warfare research & storage
– Promote citizen diplomacy
– Ban handguns
– Work towards elimination of conventional weapons

Space Technology

Promote international cooperation in a space station
Oppose human migration off-planet as a “lifeboat”
Oppose militarization of space, ban military use of shuttle

Telecommunications and Computers

Computers and communications used responsibly are appropriate technologies
The right to privacy is critical: citizens’ personal records should be protected from misuse and abuse by government or government officials. The Freedom of
Information Act should provide unquestioned access to all personal files
Universal access to personal computers,
governmental support for public data bases
Encourage public access television

Political Implementation

  • Congressional lobbying
  • Olympia legislative watch-dogging on key issues
  • Mobilize support on key issues
  • Corporations:
    • lobbying
    • socially-responsible investing
    • training and education
    • change in PAC laws
  • Local govemment
    • participate in local council meetings
    • organize recycling
    • model neighborhoods
  • Home gardening
 The prolific Waste and Pollution Committee hard at work
The prolific Waste and Pollution Committee hard at work

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 We of the Cascadia Bioregion are deeply concerned about the abuse of our natural resources and the extent to which we have already poisoned our planet and interfered with is ability to protect itself. 

 In the interests of global preservation and social harmony, we embrace the ideal that we are one species among many, responsible to the ecosystem for what we
do. It is vital that each individual take personal responsibility for conservation efforts and pollution control, by maintaining a holistic perspective of the environment.

 Current social norms, especially in the US, such as consumerism and the ‘throw away’ mentality, planned obsolescence, excess energy consumption, and the widespread belief that short term economic growth is defined as progress are the major factors that increase rate of consumption and neglect for the environment.

 We work for and encourage any efforts toward appropriate energy usage, conservation, waste reduction and recycling, so that we may maintain unspoiled land, air and waters in our bioregion and on the planet. It is critically important to work toward increasing our of the problem. 


 In order to achieve these goals:

  •  We support a reassessment of the Atomic Energy Act, which removes control over all nuclear weapons parts and production issues from public scrutiny and input.
  • We support the formation of nuclear free zones and encourage economic credits for conversion from nuclear weapons Production.
  • We call for a moratorium on licensing of any new nuclear power plants, and for phasing out all existing facilities.
  • The US Department of Energy and all of its contractors should be required to comply with all existing statutes required of commercial installations and should clean up all existing radioactive wastes pursuant to those standards. We support the formation of a ‘radioactive superfund’
  •  We call for the appointment of independent agencies to monitor releases of radioactivity from Hanford and research ttre long term health effects of those releases.


As we believe there is an infinite need, to waste not want not, it is of critical importance to change the habit of throw-away mentality. This would aim at the source

 Our goals are to support levels of policy which require commercial adoption of discretionary bins of refuse. Furthermore, we feel it necessary to develop consumer guidelines for the adaptive reuse and conservation of material goods. AIso, we feel we need programs to assess the ecological impact of manufactured products.

It also seems necessary to address the commercial lobby for unquestionable protracted resource use. This is an issue which brings to the forefront the heavy reliance of capital investment in work which is abstracted from necessity.

In this case, we feel that working for consumption without an inrinsic value connection to our daily lives, creates the waste with which we must now contend’

In our response to the consequences of a consumer society divorced from real work ethics, we need to attain the value of work that is rebounded to what is worthy of reverence, which is, for our way of life, the end of waste and pollution. 

We resolve that the people of the Cascadia region will work toward establishment of accessible avenues for recycling, such as mandatory curbside pickup, regional and national resource recovery bills, an example of which is the bottle bill, and public education to raise awarenes of waste issues as they relate to the consequences for the planet. 


 Littering may be considered  a basic personal attitude problem that manifests itself as a thoughtless act that, with time, becomes habit.

 The attitude that “my action doesn’t make a difference in the world’ is then reinforced each time a person litters and is carried over into other aspects of a person’s life’ This cycle of apathy is aggravated as long as the habit of littering continues. Littering is not an aggressive act but a passive one with its roots in apathy.

 To bring about change in regard to littering, the best thing we can do as bioregionalists is to bear witness to the act of littering. This means not only the act of recovering and recycling litter as many of us do, but to approach our fellow inhabitants when we witness an act of littering.

 In doing so, it is important to recognize littering as a passive, thoughtless habit requiring a compassionate as well as urgent offering of help in breaking the cycle of apathy.

 page 6

Nuclear Power

We of the Cascadia Bioregion are opposed to the use of nuclear power, because of its health effects during uranium mining and milling, the releases of radioactivity and possibility of meltdown during operation, the effects of and disposal problems of radioactive wastes, and the link to nuclear weapons production.

Be it resolved that we oppose any new nuclear power plant construction, and support phasing out all existing nuclear power plants, beginning with plants with the highest incidence of accidents and those that can be decommissioned with the least economic impact.

 We support and work for any legislation requiring radioactive waste cleanup, plant decommissioning and adequate waste transportation and diSposal methods.

We advocate compensation by the federal government and the nuclear power industry to radiation victims, from the soldier ordered to observe a hydrogen bomb explosion at close range to the miner who dug for uranium, neither of whom were warned of the consequences.

We support internalization of waste disposal costs as a means to tlis end, so that the rue costs of nuclear power can be felt by the stockholders as well as the consumer.

We will work toward increasing awareness of conservation and developing appropriate technologies to reduce our reliance on nuclear power.

 Liability insurance coverage for private and government owned nuclear facilities shall not be limited.

There must be full accountability and financial responsibility in the event of any accident.

Nuclear Weapons and Hanford

We of the Cascadia Bioregion are opposed to the production and deployment of nuclear weapons and are of the belief that a non-ecocidal means of maintaining peace can be found.

 A major issue of concern at present is the Hanford Nuclear Reservation and its related facilities.

We call for the immediate shutdown of the N-reactor at Hanford because of its similarity the Chernobyl plant, inadequate safety features, and its use as a nuclear
weapons production plant. It is recognized that the.electricity produced by this plant is part of a regional power surplus. The N-reactor poses a direct and immediate threat to the entire region.

We object o the potential selection of Hanford as a high level nuclear waste repository because of is unsuitable geology and proximity to the Columbia River. We
call for a reassessment of the Nuclear Waste Policy Act and its methodology in determining the best method for disposal of existing radioactive waste.

 We call for an end to all plutonium production use, storage and disposal because of the inability of the US Department of Energy to manage such a program, its detrimental effect to our bioregion, and its contribution to the threat of nuclear annihilation.

 Be it resolved that nuclear weapons production and deployment is a direct threat to out planet and we resolve to do anything in our power, short of violent action, to halt the arms race. We will employ public education, cross- cultural awmeness, legislation, litigation and nonviolent direct action to achieve these goals. 

Transportation of Hazardous Materials including Nuclear Materials

 Presently, there is inadequate management of hazardous materials transportation and poor emergency response to accidents. In many cases, improper marking and the inability to deal with certain accidents on the local level is cause for concern.

 All hazardous materials cargoes should be clearly marked and registered with proper transportation authorities as to contents, activity, routes and proper means of spill containment and cleanup.

  All hazardous materials carriers should be subject to strict standards as to vehicle and operator safety.

  The public should be informed as to all transportation routes, schedules and cargoes, and adequate evacuation methods should be in place before hazardous materials may be transported through a community. Hazardous substance transportation should not be allowed through certain communities where population or location would preclude adequate evacuation methods.

  The costs of proper transportation should be internalized and reflected in true cost to the consumer.

 Household Hazardous Wastes

Action on household hazardous wastes should be of a multi- level approach.

 Individuals should seek out altemative methods of pest and weed confiol, substihrte solvents, etc.

 Individuals should buy only those household chemicals they can immediately use, thereby reducing the amount stored.

 Individuals should seek proper disposal of all waste oil, containers and hazardous wastes with appropriate local agencies and health deparunents.

 Cascadia Bioregionalists should seek to implement local hazardous waste plans, such as those outlined in RCW 70.105 and should pressure local state and federal
governments to fund such planning.

 Bioregionalists should initiate or support activities designed to educate our neighbors regarding all aspects of household hazardous substances, alternatives, proper use, storage and disposal. 

 All household hazardous substance users should be educated as to the proper use and disposal of hazardous substances. All hazardous substances should include a
tax or surcharge for safe disposal and transportation

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Hazardous Substances

The use of chemicals has proliferated beyond our ability to understand or control them. Our society has been lead to believe that chemicals are the answer to many of the problems confronting us, but solutions must be found in the roots of these problems, which are based in our socio-cultural situation.

Chemical pollution is caused by production of goods and services that are not essential, and are in fact detrimental to sustaining tlie life of the planet. This production by industrial corporations is a response to demand by consumers who have been physically and psychologically manipulated by the industrial corporations to falsely believe that our quality of life depends on what we have instead of what we believe and feel.

Chemicals are causing the destruction of ecological processes that sustain life. Although many people believe that we need chemicals in order to maintain production, we of Cascadia know that reliance on chemicals is causing irreversible destruction of the natural balance and is increasing dependence on a system that will inevitably self-destruct.

  • We advocate a change in agricultural, industrial and forestry practices involving the use of hazardous substances and demand that all levels of government facilitate the elimination of and isolation from all hazardous substances, by any means possible.
  • It is essential to research alternative means of production that do not promote chemical use, and to explore every possible means of implementing those alternatives.
  • We urge that all chemicals being produced be researched and adequately tested for their toxicity, their synergistic relationships, and their effects on all life forms.
  • We advocate freedom of information such that:
    • Product labeling clearly denotes:
    • Process of production
    • All contents
    • Effects caused by exposure
    • Initial remedies for alleviating condition of exposure
    • All medical facilities be automatically supplied with all pertinent information relating to the use, conditions, and effects of hazardous chemicals.
  • We support “worker right to know” legislation, proper use, effects of exposure to hazardous substances, and penalties for failure to comply.
  • We request that the government ensure availability of services, at an affbrdable rate, to anyone needing medical care resulting from exposure to hazardous substances, regardless of economic costs.
  • We advocate development of a funding source to cover the costs of hazardous substance cleanup and disposal. We also propose that all costs of chemical production be internalized so as to make people aware of the true costs of their use.
  • We request that corporations and individuals be made accountable, economically and otherwise, for their negligence in providing all pertinent information regarding chemical production and use. They should also be made accountable for abuse of the environment and established laws and guidelines regarding production, transportation and use of hazardous substances.
  • We advocate development of a system that provides protection of and support for people who report abuse of the environment and established laws and guidelines concerning hazardous substances.
  • We will make resources and information available, through established channels (newsletters, alternative journals), to interested individuals and groups as well as to anyone who might be able to use it.

We actively pursue open communication and a cooperative effort to reduce dependency on on and use of hazardous chemicals.

We urge counties and other -jurisdictions to use mechanic methods of controlling roadside growth, rather than chemical methods. This would be labor intensive, creating jobs as well as reducing pollution.


Fossil Fuels

Our dependency on fossil fuels for the energy needs of the Cascadia region caries with it immediate’as well as long term effects on the health of the inhabitants of this
and other bioregions.

 We are depleting non-renewable resources at the expense of the energy needs of future generations, and the continued overuse of fossil fuels affects Cascadia on all life forms.

Be it resolved, considering the planet’s limited supply of fossil fuels and the impact of fossil fuel consumption on the environment, we as bioregionalists should work
on reducing our dependency on these non-renewable resources.

 One simple way to achieve these goals is to seek out and utilize energy efficient methods of transportation.

 We should actively support the research and development of appropriate energy sources for industry, homes and transportation needs.

page 8



From the smallest coastal sterams– home of the silver coho and pink humpbacked salmon–the powerful rivers which run with the deep long-running chinook and steelhead the health of the salt water homes and the fresh water nurseries of our bioregion Cascadia, has been synonymous with the health of the people who have lived here. To learn again to respect and honor the family of the finned ones is to learn again to respect our home, each other and ultimately ourselves. 

This evergreen region where glacial waters cascade from mountain peaks through green valleys to ocean deep is sacred and claims our respect and awe.

 We hear and feel and are part of the web of life around us. We must speak and act in behalf of the life forms who cannot. The existing structure of human culture we
acknowledge and it is with them that we wish to work to provide a cohesive plan for sustaining all life.

We recognize that we live in a bioregion that has a special totem, the salmon. The salmon represents only the part of all the people of this place; the fin people, the shell people, bird people, the human people and the forest people. We feel that the salmon represent to us when they come inlo our bioregion from the great
mother ocean, when they return home to answer the callof their place. Human people have been a heavy influence on this place and have become hard of hearing
but the spirit is here and still singing and this voice can be heard. 

 Committees spent long hours drafting their resolutions and statements
Committees spent long hours drafting their resolutions and statements


We acknowledge the political bodies that exist within our bioregion and that exercise control over our fisheries resources; the Native Indian Nations, municipalities and regional authorities, the province of British Columbia
and the Northwest States, the Federal governments of the US and Canada, the Law of the Sea and the United Nations.

 In support of Native Indian rights, we ask for a clarification from Indian Councils of their interpretation of the treaty rights regarding their own management of these rights.

 Since trans-boundary bioregional concerns offer both  opportunities and responsibilities (pollution, shared resources) we ask all governments to recognize their roles in the shared bioregion. We particularly encourage letters, phone calls and statements to the Puget Sound Water Quality Authority to communicate with agencies in British Columbia and Canada.

Multinational Exploitation

Multinational seafood corporations’ exploitation must stop their unchecked depletion of the resource. Our economy must shift to a balanced sharing of our fisheries resources.
We must respect the sustainability of all life forms and their habitats by:

  • Presentations at all related public hearings
  • Boycotting specific brands
  • Picketing corporate offices
  • Distributing consumer information


  • Encourage indigenous species
  • Use single indicator species (mussels) to monitor water quality
  • All aquaculture systems incorporate a feedback mechanism to keep tabs on water purity
  • Keep a few mussel racks since mussels are a good indicator
  • Include responsible aquaculture; environmentally synergistic, not destructive to environments
  • Aquaculture systems which are not destructive to the environment synergistic and which enhance indigenous species be encouraged
  • Encourage cooperative to sell locally grown seafood
  • Post recipes in cooperatives for using mussels, seaweed, etc., which are locally grown
  • Research done on economics of scale; optimum size, environmental impact
  • Research be done on optimum size of aquaculture system and the environmental impact these systems would have

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  • Local direct marketing of seafoods be developed
  • Co-ops be outlets for fisheries products – seek out information from National Marine Fisheries Service, Sand Point, Seattle (Linda Chavez-Michaels Product Development Division)


  • They have a holistic view of their work
  • They enforce workers’ rights and safety measures
  • That fishers look for local marketing opportunities
  • That fishers consider a change in lifestyle
  • Find aware fishers & encourage their grassroots organizing


  • They adopt a holistic view of the fisheries, and that objective research rather than special-interest research be enhanced
  • Approach facilities, educational boards, and agencies i.e. Sea Grant, NMFS
  • That responsible research be continually monitored
  • That researchers be accountable for their projects

Water Quality

  • Comprehensive standards need to be set
  • Participation in the Puget Sound Water Quality Authority (PSWQA) by fishers and consumers
  • Local Responsibility (politics) for water quality be stressed and developed where it is feasible. 



  • The First Cascadia Bioregional Congress support The Alliance as a bioregional newspaper and encourages additionally locally initiated editions. 
  • Explore the possibility of The Alliance serving as a nonprofit umbrella organization for communications and fundraising for the bioregion, if needed. 
  • Encourage groups and inviduals to assertively approach major media to encourage more socially responsible programming. 
 Dave Haenke (The Bioregional Project) and Mike Barnes (Portland ALliance)
Dave Haenke (The Bioregional Project) and Mike Barnes (Portland ALliance)



The level of water quality to be achieved in any particular water body should directly reflect the needs of species relying on that body. Indicator or totem species should be identified in each water body and the water quality should then meet the needs of those species. 

Examples of species appropriate for water totemsare salmon for rivers and streams, trout for lakes, and mussels, oysters and Orcas for the Puget Sound. 

Human needs and ‘pure’ water may then be dropped as criteria for water quality standards. 

Ish River Bioregionalists should make a concentrated, continued efforts to be involved in the policy planning and implementation process of the Puget Sound Water Quality Authority Board. This and other similar government programs provide immediate opportunities to affect change through existing programs. The Puget Sound Water Quality Authority program covers water pollution to the Puget Sound and therefore may set guidelines for other water bodies. 

Though acid rain has not reached levels comparable with the Northeastern United States, or central Europe, we should not ignore its devastating effects in those regions and the potential impact on Cascadia. We should develop an awareness of potential and existing sources. Indicator species would serve to identify these problems early. 

Radioactive contamination of our water to any extent, should not be allowed. 

We should strive to assure quifer protection throughout Cascadia. Opposition to point and non-point sources of aquifer pollution, such as landfills, agricultural runoff, industries and nuclear installations, should be of primary concern to us. 

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The corporate-industrial model of forest mono-culture management destroys land and water habitat; wildlife; and sustainable economic viability. It tears at the social
ecology of local communities and native peoples, and the ecosystems on which all life is dependent.


A bioregional approach to Forestry begins by acknowledging that the forests of our region are one of her greatest gifts. The forests are the skin and lungs of the Earth. Economic value can only be a part of the true value of a forest we choose to manage for ‘right livelihood’. Forestry should be part of a culture attuned to the needs of the whole ecosystem. We need to ask what
the Bioregion asks of us.


  • We endorse the following characteristics of a bioregional approach to forestry:
  • Large sacred preserves remain unviolated
  • Forests are managed intensively only in appropriate areas
  • There is a diversity of ages and species
  • Labor intensive practices are used, generating an equal or increasing yield for future generations
  • Selective cutting rather than clearcutting
  • Yields fulfill rather than create markets, and conservation and recycling of forest products
  • Appropriate biological methods
  • In addition to timber, products such as bees, berries, and mushrooms are integrated into forest practices
  • Decision-making is community-based, includingthe interests of elders, children, future generations, etc.
  • The forester works intimately and holistically wirh the forest and community
  • Watershed-based cooperatives are responsible for holistic forest practices through the generations

We endorse a moratorium on the logging of Old-Growth forest and recommend the following strategies:

  • Promote immediate and intensive study of these ancient ecosystems, i.e. insect life in the upper canopy, mycorrhizal roles, etc. 
  • Identify and inventory Old Growth in the bioregion
  • Publicize this, attend timber sales. Identify areas within each watershed that could become Old Growth. 
  • Encourage people to get involved in the process of protection
  • Get people out in the woods!
  • Distribute maps of relevant sites within specific watersheds. Name these sites (no lot #’s)
  • Pursue legal suits to prevent destruction of these sites. Leam the legal-bureaucratic process.
  • Participate in timber sale appeals, attend workshops, get involved
  • Articulate the values of Forests, educate the public
    • a) Schools -Forest awareness week
    • b) Neighbor-to-neighbor
    • c) Old Growth week
    • d) Networking
  • Expand coordination and synergy between groups protecting wilderness
  • Clearcut consciousness!
    • a) Clearcut picnics
    • b) Concert in clearcut
    • c) Aerial photographs
  • Nonviolent direct action
  • Meet with loggers, millers, and other forest workers where they are comfortable, and invite union representatives to bioregional forestry meetings
  • Develop a catalogue of bureaucratic mis-terminology, i.e.’scenic corridors’
  • Spiritual and educational signs in our National Forests
  • Publicly address the hidden costs of Old Growth logging
  • in terms of fishing, tourism., hunting, shellfish, and
  • costs to the public such as dredging sediment, subsidizing road-building, flood damage and herbicide damage

We endorse and recommend the promotion of the following model of long-term ‘stewardship Contracts is encouraged for public lands:

  • Local operators are responsible for all aspects of the work prcess, i.e. planting, thinning, harvesting, milling, etc
  • Entire watersheds are viewed as unitary biotic zones
  • where all values, including fish, wiidlife, genetic
  • diversity, recreation and utilization are considered
  • There is inter-agency cooperation within watersheds,
  • with entire watershed stability and health in view

We endorse the bond concept for timber sales. An amount approximately 10% of expected profit is placed as surety of purchaser’s proper adherence to contract regulations. Bond money is returned or partially returned with interest accrued, or is withheld in accordance with the findings of post-cut inspection. Purchasers who violate regulations three times are no longer eligible to bid on units sold.

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  • We support legalizing composting toilets
  • We support disseminating information on public land and roadside spraying
  • We support compiling a booklet of concise, area specific lists, e.g. planting times, companion planting, alternatives to presticides, composting techniques, seed sources, fertilizer assessment, etc. 

Locally-based Agriculture

  • We support development of bioregional diets
  • We support establishment of “edible parks” 
  • We support establishment of community gardens on public lands
  • We support development of “local” plant food species lists
  • We supportextension of the King County Farm Development Rights Purchase Plan throughout the biroegion
  • Identify availbale areas which can be regenerated as farmland or natural habitat
  • We support organization of organic garden tours
  • Development of farmland trust funds to facilitate preservation of farmland through financial assistance.



Until we recreate/regenerate a decentralized and post-patriarchal economic/political system we cannot truly implement peace. 

In the meantime, by educating the public about means of legitimate defense (e.g. nonviolent civil defense militias), we can provide models for means of security which are alternatives to the current threat of nuclear war. 

We understand that security grows out of love and justice. 


Describing and promoting a step by step plan for a long term global demilitarization and denuclearize, with the clearly stated as a whole peace system. 

A whole peace system shall rely on nonviolence, economic and social justice, decentralization, and would allow legitimate nonviolent defense against aggression. 

Plant and Animal Rights

  • We support education to dispel the protein myth
  • We support publication of plant and animal rights pamphlets from a bioregional viewpoint
  • We support encouragement of eating lower on the food chain

Economics of Food

  • We support publications of list of “organic” farms, gardens and gardeners
  • We support development of nutritional information to be distributed at food stamp offices, etc. 
  • We support improving and extending surplus food laws
  • We support publicaiton of list list of local companies who process locally produced or organic food. 
  • We support farmers cooperatives and markets
  • We support development of financial assistance programs for local food producers, processors, distrubtors and sellers. 



We encourage you as treachers and learners to initiate and forward process of education in bioregional subject matters in as many contexts as you can find, whether this may be be in schools or in the community. 

We in the eudcation forum have decided to start a letter network among ourselves. It will be used as an ongoing forum on educaiton and ideas pertaining to learning. 

page 12

All Together in One Place

by Erik Haugland

We have many different interests
we lead many different lives
But we all have one commitment: 
to make sure the earth survives
So we’ve come from all directions
to decide what must be done
And we’ve gathered here together
to proclaim that we are one. 

We are all together, in one place
We are all together, face to face
We are all together, on one land
We are all together, hand in hand

We are dwellers in a land
between the mountains and the sea
Full of trees and streams and salmon
it’s a perfect place to be
They draw boundaries to divide us
but we know it can’t be done
For we all live in Cascadia
and all of us are one. 

We are all together, in one place
We are all together, face to face
We are all together, on one land
We are all together, hand in hand

Salmon of the Heart

by Erik Haugland
(inspired by Tom Jay’s essay)

Before we are born, we’re as salmon
swimming upstream to spawn
When we reach the end, a human is born
but the salmon are still not gone
They’re living deep inside us
their spirit guides our soul
They remind us of a time when we were free
they help us make us whole

So I’ll sing this song to the salmon
to the salmon of the heart
And to the life that we all are living
which the salmon helped to start

Once there were trees on the hillsides
once all the streams were clear
once there were salmon swimming in the water
now they’re starting to disappear
Some people say it doesn’t matter
some people say we’ll live on
But something inside of our soul will have died
when all the salmon are gone

So I’ll sing this song to the salmon
to the salmon of the heart
And to the world of trees and clear blue streams
of which the salmon is a part

The salmon is the totem
of a green and peaceful land
They connect the sea from which we came
to the ground on which we stand
They sing a silent chorus
a sacred salmon song
of going asea and returning to die
in the place where you belong

So I’ll sing this song to the salmon
to the salmon of the heart
And to the region where the salmon live
from which I’ll never part. 

Page 13

Congress participants gathered in a grassy field for the closing ceremony. They formed a single large circle, clasping hands. 

The circle was conjured:

conjure artful
circle heartful
in the cycle cast by feeling
craft anew the wheels of healing

The quarters were called:

Guardian of the north, I conjure thee!
answer: I am the earth, who contains all
Guardian of the east, I summon thee!
answer: I am air, the dancing spirit of wind
Come, you great changer, Guardian of the South!
answer: I am fire, source of light and warmth
Guardian of the West, come to us!
answer: I am water, element of life.

The circle was then proclaimed:
These are the spirits of the sacred circle
that contains us, and which we are.
Revere them, for this is what and who we are.
Blessed be.

The participants began to chant, and as we chanted,,
we danced a spiral dance, to the center of the circle.

The earth, the water, the fire, the air
returns, returns, returns, returns
The earth, the water, the fire, the air
returns, returns, returns, returns
The earth is our mother we must protect her
returns, returns, returns, returns
The ground on which we walk is sacred
returns, returns, returns, returns

We danced until the spiral was solid, when we knelt. A seed, some earth, and some water were passed along the spiral to the center point, where tlrc seed was planted. A spontaneous, soft chant arose:

The earth is my body
Air is my heart
Water is my blood
Fire is my spirit

The spiral returned slowly to the original, large circle.We danced a Sufi dance, with people facing each other and moving forward to meet the next person in the circle, accompanied with expressions of open arms, giving, and receiving:

To you I give
From you I receive
Together we share
By this we live.

 Cascaida Bioregional Congress, CLosing Ceremony
Cascaida Bioregional Congress, CLosing Ceremony

page 14


Congress Representation

Cascadia Green Alliance
Pacific Cascadia Green Network
British Columbia Greens
Portland Greens
South Sound Bioregional Network
The Bioregional Project
Portland Alliance
South Sound Alliance
New Catalyst
Rain Magazine
Skagit Network Newsletter
The Bat
Earth First!
Sixth Sense
Hanford Clearinghouse
Citizen Action for Lasting Security
Pledge of Resistance
Witness for Peace
Mondragon West
Cascadia Revolving Fund
Cathedral Forest Action Group
Agroforestry Association
Olympic Reforestation
People for the Ethical Treatrnent of Animals
Pack Rat Recycling
The Evergreen State College
Huxley College
Portland State University
Breitenbush Community
Chinook lrarning Center
Mizpah Community
Four Creeks Neighborhood Association
Center for Another Living Method
Cascadian Islands Network
Whidbey Island Aquaculture
Methow Valley Steelhead
Sammamish Watershed
Bull Run Watershed
Port Gardner Bay
Snohomish Valley
Folks that haven’t realized the need for change
People born 20 years from now’

Special Thanks

Caroline Estes, Iv{aster Facilitator from Alpha Farm, deserves more thanks than she’ll ever
acknowledge for serving as the Congress facilitator. She made us all appreciate effective process as she walked the line between empassioned commitment and professional detachment.

David Haenke, with his many years of experience in the bioregional movement, provided us with his considerable wisdom and wit. His guidance is
always appreciated.

Jim Scott” Cecelia Osfrow and “All Life is Equal” presented us with a wonderful evening of song, as
Robert Sund, Tom Jay, Tim McNulty and Clifford Burke entranced us with the spoken word.

Chefs’ Surprise

One of the uniting forces of the Congress was
the incredible feasts. Not only were they offered
with smiles, but they were filled with love. Lynn
Bernstein, in concert with Lisa Taylor and Kate
Glass, coordinated the purchasing and cooking of
food that was mostly organic and locally produced.
We owe them a heartfelt thanks for allowing us to
concentrate on our hearts and minds and not empty
stomachs. We also thank the following providers
of local, quality food for their interest and support

  • Blue Heron Bakery
  • Pacifrc Soyfoods
  • Farmers’Wholesale Coop
  • Dairy Fresh Farms
  • OlympiaFood Coop
  • Bob Gillis – Sprouts
  • Bob Bussabarger – Blueberries
  • Allen Fitzthum – Honey

Coordinating Committee

Mike Barnes
Vaughn Bresheare
Patty Bunell
Bill Fiorilli
Clare Fogelsong
Jody Grage Haug
Erik Haugland
Karin Herrmann
Mike Hooper
Rebecca Lowe
Constance Maytum
Dave McCloskey
Nan McMurry
Rusty Post
I-ance Scott
Frank Seal

Committee and Forum Focalizers

Patty Bunell
Jody Grage Haug
Erik Haugland
Mike Hooper
Mark Killgore
Rebecca Lowe
Constance Maytum
Dave McCloskey
Nan McMurry
Peter Moulton
Rusty Post
Rhys Rottr

page 15

 Erik Haugland and Dave McCloskey unfurl the Cascadian colors before a Coordinating Committee meeting; the star and crescent on a field of blue with green and white stripes
Erik Haugland and Dave McCloskey unfurl the Cascadian colors before a Coordinating Committee meeting; the star and crescent on a field of blue with green and white stripes
 Locally grown organic buffets, beautiful weather and excellent company
Locally grown organic buffets, beautiful weather and excellent company
 The morning after for local hosts (1to r) Bill Fiorilli, Rusty Post, Peter Moulton, Lynn Bemstein, Lisa Taylor and Dave Newhouse
The morning after for local hosts (1to r) Bill Fiorilli, Rusty Post, Peter Moulton, Lynn Bemstein, Lisa Taylor and Dave Newhouse

page 16

The Cascadia Bioregional Congress proceedings were produced by:
South Sound Bioregional Network
Box 2772, Olympia, WA 98507