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Grovewashing 

Editor:

I write to applaud the publication of the cover story “Here, There, and Everywhere” (July 9). The issue of corporate “greenwash” and “localwash” is a relevant topic for the maintenance of community here in Humboldt County.

This is not new material for the North Coast Journal, yet it does set a standard for future coverage of related issues of importance. For instance, in an in-depth investigation of the true environmental and cultural impacts of the proposal to widen Highway 101 through Richardson Grove, a responsible approach would fully consider the implications of a project that is painted as being essential for Humboldt businesses, when in fact there is evidence that giant multi-national corporations like Walmart and The Home Depot could be amongst the largest beneficiaries.

The Home Depot is, by the way, a major corporate target in an international campaign to protect wild rivers in Chile’s Patagonia. This targeting of The Home Depot is a result of their business relationship with the economic interests that are promoting massive hydroelectric development on some of the planet’s last pristine rivers (see http://internationalrivers.org/patagonia).

How ironic would it be for a unique species of Humboldt “localwash” to literally open the way for The Home Depot in Humboldt County, contributing to the degradation of both local businesses and globally rare wilderness, as well as sacrificing an emblematic gateway to the county?

Consistent coverage of these issues will be of great use for the Humboldt businesses that are working hard to distinguish themselves in a market flooded with “greenwash” and “localwash.” I encourage the North Coast Journal to maintain this standard of analysis when addressing the proposed highway widening through Richardson Grove.

Gary Graham Hughes, Redway

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