“This successful effort will shape the region’s future for generations, ensuring that transportation planning fosters a healthy environment, robust economy, and thriving society.”
This grassroots initiative, spurred by the Washington State Legislature and non-profit Ruckelshaus Center,
challenges communities to explore new ways to protect critical areas while maintaining and enhancing the viability of agriculture. Rather than a one-size-fits all regulation, a more site-specific cooperative venture is envisioned.
Last year, the Voluntary Stewardship Advisory Group reviewed agricultural and environmental data, discussed historic interactions and frustrations, and considered barriers and opportunities. Technical and agricultural subcommittees formed and deliberated. This year, the group is moving to draft the plan, identify roles and responsibilities, develop outreach strategies, and work with the State Conservation Commission, which will approve the plan. To learn more, visit: http://www.co.thurston.wa.us/planning/vsp/voluntary-stewardship-home.html.
Over the past several years, the Thurston Food System Council has sponsored several community gatherings and food celebrations and joined forces with the Asset Building Coalition Food Hub. In 2015, the council will update the Thurston Thrives Strategy Maps, and focus on preserving resource lands and making connections between institutional buyers — such as schools and hospitals — and local growers and processors. To learn more, visit http://thurstonfoodcouncil.org/about-us/.