The Lincoln County Board of Commissioners formally, respectfully requests that ANE
Forests of Oregon and landowner Sorn Nymark abate plans for herbicide application in the
South Beaver Creek watershed. Our concerns with this planned chemical application are
many and can be grouped into three primary categories: public health and safety,
environmental protection, and public sentiment.
Public health and safety – The planned spray sites lie just upstream of the intake for
the Seal Rock Water District, a utility providing water to 5,500 people year-round
and up to 8,000 during peak tourist season. The district’s general manager has said
the spraying will require testing to detect contamination and an immediate
cessation of water collection if contamination is detected, forcing the district to buy
water from a neighboring utility until testing comes back negative for these
Even then, the first rains of the season will require a new round of testing due to runoff and potentially more shutdowns of collection. Additionally, many residents of the area rely on springs and wells, which are also susceptible to contamination. These residents do not have the option of obtaining a secondary source of water and might not have the resources to pay for testing. CIn both cases, the increased testing and potential purchase of alternative water
supply represents an unfair financial burden to the water district, landowners and
residents – on top of the risk to public health.
Environmental protection – The proposed spray areas are in close proximity to
sensitive habitat, home to bald eagle, osprey, black bear, beavers and other wildlife.
The watershed is also critical habitat for the Oregon Coast coho salmon, listed as a
threatened species under the Endangered Species Act.
Public sentiment – The Lincoln County Board of Commissioners, as well as state
agencies, have received dozens of comments in adamant opposition to the planned
spraying. And while it was eventually overturned in a circuit court decision upheld
on appeal, county residents in 2017 approved an ordinance banning all aerial
herbicide and pesticide spraying in Lincoln County, making the will of our
constituents, and our obligation to be their voice, clear.
Oregon law makes the decision to spray or not to spray yours. Your ownership of our
precious natural resources also comes with a clear ethical, if not legal, obligation to protect
them. We urge you to seek alternative means to control unwanted vegetation.