Working in close collaboration with the Deschutes Estuary Restoration Team, students in Prof. Jenny James' first year writing seminar at Pacific Lutheran University in the fall of 2018 completed video interviews with Olympia community leaders and estuary advocates. Our specific focus for this interview project was to explore the reasons behind the Deschutes estuary restoration, as well as the ethical and moral foundations of this restoration. Interviewees were invited to reflect on the moral and ethical basis of their involvement in advocating for the Deschutes. Integral to this exploration was often a consideration of the various obligations or duties that advocates bear in relationship to the diverse communities, species, and histories that comprise the Deschutes watershed. Along with personal reflections on how ethics shapes individual support for the estuary's return, interviewees explored potential solutions to common ethical quandaries that have arisen in the planning and management of the restoration.

Interview questions included:

In your opinion, why should we restore the estuary, and for whom?

What personal values or experiences have motivated you to get involved in the estuary restoration effort?

How would you describe your ethical relationship to the environment? What about to the Deschutes Estuary in particular?

What is the biggest ethical dilemma that could affect the successful restoration of the estuary? How might we resolve this challenge?

How can people get involved to help the restoration efforts?

November 3, 2018: Ali Johnson, Board Member, DERT

November 3, 2018: Candace Penn, Climate Change Specialist, Squaxin Island Tribe’s Natural Resource Department

November 3, 2018:  Renata Rollins, Olympia City Councilmember

November 10, 2018: Bob Whitener, Owner & Managing Member of the Whitener Group, Enrolled Squaxin Island Tribal Member

November 3, 2018: Sue Patnude, Executive Director, DERT

November 3, 2018: Dave Peeler, Board President, DERT

November 10. 2018: Rev. John Rosenberg, Former Board Member, DERT