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Tribal Lands & Environment Forum

2018 Tribal Lands & Environment Forum

We are very excited to offer the 8th annual Tribal Lands and Environment Forum (TLEF). This year’s forum will be taking place at the Spokane Convention Center in Spokane, Washington, August 13-16, 2018.

This year’s Forum will feature special trainings, field trips, and breakout sessions focused on our conference theme: A National Conversation on Tribal Land and Water Resources. Topics highlighted at the forum include solid/hazardous waste management, brownfields, UST/LUSTs, Superfund sites, and emergency response. Tribal water program topics – water quality, drinking water, and habitat restoration (including wetlands, streams and fisheries) will also be included with breakout sessions, trainings and field trips.

Click HERE to access the 2018 TLEF Booklet. [pdf]

Check out the Spokane Convention Center details for restaurants, entertainment, and local attractions in Spokane click here: and


On this website you will find information on registering for the forum, making hotel reservations, airport transportation options, securing vendor/exhibitor tables, Multi-Media Meetup, travel scholarships, and the TLEF draft agenda. You may also access presentations and agendas from past forums.

For the 2018 TLEF, the Spokane Convention Center and hotel are smoke free facilities.

2018 TLEF Trainings

Following are the special trainings on offer this year at the TLEF. We are not asking people to sign up in advance this year, except in two cases. If you want to participate in the UST mock compliance inspection training and site visit (Tuesday morning) you will need to contact Julie at Also, if you want to participate in the one-on-one assistance with WQX submissions opportunity, you will need to sign up on their site (details below).

Monday, August 13, 2018

8:00 am - 12:00 pm: EPA Spill Prevention Control & Countermeasures Regulation (SPCC) Course
Details: The purpose of the SPCC rule is to help facilities prevent a discharge of oil into navigable waters or adjoining shorelines. The SPCC rule requires facilities to develop, maintain, and implement an oil spill prevention plan, called an SPCC Plan. Instructor will use a combination of lecture, case study examples, and interactive discussions to acquaint participants with the tools and resources available that will assist them in inspecting (oil storage) SPCC facilities for compliance with rule requirements. This class is a shorter version (and does not substitute for) the 40-hour course which is a program-specific training requirement for oil inspectors, other EPA personnel, grantees, or contractors conducting compliance monitoring activities associated with 40 CFR part 112 (such as oil inspections or exercises).
Instructor: Mark Howard, EPA

8:00 am– 5:00 pm: One-on-one Assistance with WQX Submission
Details: One-on-one appointments can be made to receive both WQX Web and WQX/Node submitting assistance. Each appointment will review the Tribe’s data, identify submission challenges and work to submit data and/or set up a plan to follow-up with the Tribe to resolve any outstanding issues. We also welcome other non-appointment visits, as we can still discuss data questions and set up a plan for follow-up as well. To schedule an individual appointment please email In the subject line write WQX Appointment Request Include in your email message the following information: Tribe’s Name; Primary Contact Name; Primary Contact Phone; Primary Contact Email; Your 1st, 2nd, & 3rd time preferences for appointments; If you know your Org ID & User ID, please include that information as well; a summary of the assistance you will require.
Instructor: Laura Shumway, EPA

8:00 am—12:00 pm: Establishing and Enhancing the Brownfields 128(a) Tribal Response Program
Details: Establishing and Enhancing the Brownfields/128(a) Tribal Response Program (TRP)
An overview of how to Establish the 128(a) TRP-Brownfields program and also how to enhance an established program. A discussion of the issues and problems encountered by tribes and how to implement a successful program for the benefit of the Tribe (s). What technical assistance and training is available to the TRP Coordinators. This is intended for tribal staff with little Brownfield experience as well as those with experience. Outcome will be information sharing and improvements in all TRP program implementation.
Instructor: Mickey Hartnett, KSU-MAP

10:00 am– 12:00 pm: Hydrologic and Water Quality System (HAWQS) Modeling
Details: The Hydrologic and Water Quality System (HAWQS) is a web-based interactive water quantity and quality modeling system that employs as its core modeling engine the Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT). The session will walk users through HAWQS’ interactive web interfaces and maps; pre-loaded input data; outputs that include tables, charts, and raw output data; a user guide, and online development, execution, and storage of a user's modeling projects. Participants should have some water quality modeling experience or familiarity of the process of development of models. The participants will be guided through an example project allowing users to understand the workflows of projects in HAWQS.
Instructor: Arndt Gossel and Stephen Muela, EPA

1:00 pm – 5:00 pm: Strengthening Tribal Self-Determination and Self-Governance through the Administration of Environmental Protection Programs
Details: EPA’s 1984 Policy for the Administration of Environmental Programs on Indian Reservations and the 1992 Indian Environmental General Assistance Program Act (GAP) are based on the notion that tribal governments are the appropriate non-Federal parties for making environmental decisions and carrying out regulatory program responsibilities for Indian country. The Policy and GAP continue to guide EPA in its work with tribes and help EPA fulfill its mission in a manner that promotes tribal self-government. This session will cover the history and content of the 1984 Indian Policy and the 1992 GAP statute and demonstrate their continuing relevance for enhancing tribal sovereignty today, including building sustainable infrastructure and technical capacity.
Instructor: James M. Grijalva, University of North Dakota School of Law
Moderator: Ann Marie Chischilly, ITEP Executive Director

1:00 pm – 5:00 pm: Addressing Meth Problems in Indian Country
Details: The use of "Meth" and other drugs in Indian Country has become epidemic and the impacts on tribal communities, health and housing is very serious. This training session will provide information on the problems resulting from the production and use of “Meth” on tribal communities, health issues and impacts on residential structures. The methods and resources available to assess and cleanup the impacts on housing structures and related materials will be discussed to include use of the Tribal Brownfields/Tribal Response Programs and other tribal and federal resources. An Interdisciplinary approach and the coordinated efforts of many tribal programs is critical in addressing the many problems associated with Meth use and production on tribal lands especially coordination between tribal housing, environmental and law enforcement programs. The Outcome of this session is intended to be a better understanding of the problems and the cooperation and interdisciplinary approach needed to address them.
Instructor: Jody Ground, Choke Cherry Consulting LLC and Mickey Hartnett, KSU-TAB
Moderator: Ann Wyatt, Klawok Tribe and TWAR Steering Committee

1:00 pm– 5:00 pm: Unmanned Aircraft Systems Flight Training & Part 107 Course
Details: This is an introduction to the use of the tools, resources and information to achieve 40 hours training and certification goals how to fly professional-grade UAS manually and autonomously. Students will gain industry knowledge, real time demonstration of an actual drone in operation. In a real world experience aides in conducting search & rescue missions, inspection/assessments in extreme hazardous conditions, data collections and GIS data processing, real time aerial photographing, deploying sensors in remote areas. Assisting other local agencies, Tribal Resources, THPO, and Law Enforcement.
Instructor: Quinton Jacket, Ute Mountain Ute Tribe

1:00 pm—5:00 pm: National Incident Management System (NIMS - ICS/Unified Command) Short Course
Details: Participants will learn the basics of emergency response operations and organization from EPA and FEMA. Discussion of how local, state, tribal, and federal agencies respond to incidents and how partners fit into Unified Command with participant input will be encouraged. Class will follow FEMA NIMS on-line training but will allow for additional material from all representatives/instructors.
Instructor: Nick Nichols, EPA and Bill Sulinckas, FEMA

1:00 pm– 5:00 pm: Community Engagement & Brownfields Redevelopment through Indigenous Planning & Interdisciplinary Partnerships
Details: This session is part of the National Tribal TAB initiative led by Kansas State University. Specifically, it will introduce participants to key concepts of Indigenous Planning and its role in Brownfields Reuse and Redevelopment. Additionally, there will be hands-on demographic training focused on utilizing U.S. Census information to create population pyramids. This session is comprised of an interdisciplinary team including the University of New Mexico’s Indigenous Design + Planning Institute, Kansas State University’s Tribal TAB, Eight Northern Indian Pueblo Council, and KSU TAB-affiliated partners as collaborators. The goal of this session is to develop capacity in tribal community engagement, in a neutral setting, using Indigenous participatory techniques that can leverage Tribal Response Programs (TRP) resources and tools. For example, the approach can help stakeholders scope, plan, and implement land re-use decisions based on an agreed set of principles and input from all generations. This and other values-based methods can generate consensus in meeting environmental, economic, cultural, and social needs with brownfields sites involving existing infrastructure, greenspace, and strategic visioning. NOTE: the hands-on training requires a laptop with Microsoft Excel.
Instructor: Michaela Paulette Shirley and Theodora Jojola, UNM; Margaret Chavez, ENIPC; Eugene Goldfarb, UIC; Blase Leven and Oral Saulters, KSU-TAB

1:00 pm– 3:00 pm: Digital Storytelling Strategies for Tribal Environmental Programs
Details: Digital storytelling is an approach used in communities worldwide that allows storytellers to produce brief (2-3 minutes) videos blending their own voices, photographs, video clips or music. They are told in the first person about an issue of importance to the storyteller- Your story told and shown from your unique perspective. Illegal dumping continues to plague New Mexico and through a FY2018 NM Recycling and Illegal Dumping Grant, the Santo Domingo Tribe’s Natural Resources Department (SDT NRD) is looking for new and innovative ways to help with cleanup and prevention. This funding seeks to gather a collection of short movies from participants that will assist in the sharing of ideas and experiences as the SDT NRD collaborates with Creative Narrations to conduct two (2) digital storytelling workshops for the twenty-two Pueblos and Tribes in NM with a focus on curbing illegal dumping within our homelands. Each participant will create their own 2-3 minute video during the workshop.
Instructor: Cynthia Naha, Santo Domingo Tribe

3:00 pm– 5:00 pm: Hazardous Waste Identification & Minimization
Details: Hazardous waste poses a significant threat in tribal communities, especially if the hazardous waste remains unidentified. Recent hazardous waste improvement rules now require generators of waste to preform accurate waste identifications. EPA has established a strong framework for identifying wastes and determining if they are hazardous. Attendees will participate in hands-on waste identification activities using this framework with commonly used cleaning products which will allow people to identify common wastes in their homes and businesses. Waste minimization efforts will be discussed in order to reduce the regulatory and pollution burden on Tribal Nations, such as that through making safer purchasing choices. Pollution prevention options will be presented to support these efforts.
Instructor: Tribal and EPA presenters

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

8:00 am – 12:00 pm: Conducting Effective Compliance Assistance Inspections for UST Owner/ Operator
Details: This special training will provide a hands-on training for tribal professionals interested in providing compliance assistance to their UST owner/operators, especially as the deadline for new regulations is coming up in October of this year. Attendees will meet in training room 402AB, and then depart at 9:00 am for a local UST facility, where they will walk through a compliance assistance inspection, learn useful strategies on how to effectively conduct these inspections, and share their own approaches with colleagues. Please note you will need to sign up in advance for this training and site visit. All attendees should wear close toed shoes. Safety vests will be provided but attendees are encouraged to bring theirs if they have them.
Instructor: Ben Thomas, UST Training, and Victoria Flowers and Mike Arce, Oneida Nation
To reserve your spot for the bus please email

8:00 am—12:00 pm: ATSDR Tools to Engage the Community and Evaluate Hazardous Sites
Details: In this interactive session, participants will learn about tools and resources created by the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) Brownfields/Land Reuse Program. Community health is an important part of land revitalization. To encourage healthy redevelopment ATSDR creates resources to help communities consider health in revitalization plans. In this session, Captain Gary Perlman, an integral member of the ATSDR Land Reuse Team, will demonstrate and describe four ATSDR resources designed to improve community health and engage communities in land reuse plans. The first resource is the ATSDR Brownfields/Land Revitalization Action Model, a four-step framework to engage communities in land reuse planning. Through brainstorming, the Development Community -all those with a vested interest in revitalization, work through four steps: 1. Identify community issues, 2. suggest revitalization strategies to address issues, 3. discuss corresponding health benefits, and 4. create indicators to measure changes in overall community health status over time. Over 20 communities have used the Action Model, leading to what ATSDR believes is one of the first sets of public health indicators associated with redevelopment.
Instructor: Gary Perlman, ATSDR
Moderator: Ann Wyatt, Klawok Tribe and TWAR Steering Committee

8:00 am– 12:00 pm: One-on-one Assistance with WQX Submission
Details: One-on-one appointments can be made to receive both WQX Web and WQX/Node submitting assistance. Each appointment will review the Tribe’s data, identify submission challenges and work to submit data and/or set up a plan to follow-up with the Tribe to resolve any outstanding issues. We also welcome other non-appointment visits, as we can still discuss data questions and set up a plan for follow-up as well. To schedule an individual appointment please email In the subject line write WQX Appointment Request. Include in your email message the following information: Tribe’s Name; Primary Contact Name; Primary Contact Phone; Primary Contact Email; Your 1st, 2nd, & 3rd time preferences for appointments; If you know your Org ID & User ID, please include that information as well; a summary of the assistance you will require.
Instructor: Laura Shumway, EPA

8:30 am—9:45 pm: Lights...Camera...Success Stories! The GAP National Pilot
Details: The Indian Environmental General Assistance Program (GAP) helps tribes develop a range of environmental program capacities – from water quality monitoring to emergency response. One way of demonstrating the breadth and value of GAP funding is through tribal success stories. This session will focus on the recent pilot conducted by EPA’s American Indian Environmental Office with tribal and regional staff to support development of a new, national system for collecting and sharing GAP success stories. Session attendees will hear from pilot participants, learn about next steps, and have the opportunity to share suggestions with AIEO leadership.
Instructor: Felicia Wright and Lisa Berrios, EPA

8:00 am – 9:45 am: Updates from the ITF & Addressing Open Dumps in Partnership with IHS
Details: In the first part of this training attendees will learn about the multi-agency tribal Infrastructure Task Force’s (ITF) work to develop and coordinate federal activities in delivering water infrastructure, wastewater infrastructure and solid waste management services to tribal communities. The ITF created a Waste Programs Sub-workgroup to identify and address programs, initiatives, and other issues that will improve planning construction, operation, and maintenance of sustainable infrastructure on tribal lands. The Waste Programs Sub-Workgroup established three Work Teams to work on the following issues: Work Team 1: “Barriers and Potential Resources to Solid Waste Implementation in Indian Country,” Team 2: “Community Engagement Strategy,” and Team 3: “Proposed Approach to Improve Open Dumps Data and Solid Waste Projects and Programs in Indian Country.” A representative from each of the three Work Teams will present an update on the work that is being completed or that has been achieved thus far. The second part of this training will focus on how the Indian Health Service and the US Environmental Protection Agency have entered a partnership through a Memorandum of Understanding to better coordinate their efforts in the areas of solid waste projects, programs, and open dump data. This discussion will cover the current state of implementation of this MOU on open dump data and solid waste projects and programs. Attendees will also be provide with an understanding of how Tribes can seek funding for open dump and solid waste projects through the Sanitation Deficiency System (SDS) process; how the SDS scores and ranking criteria are determined; how Tribes can best work with IHS to update, delete, or add new projects to SDS.
Instructor: Rob Roy, La Jolla Band of Luiseno Indians; Kami Snowden, TSWAN; Kim Katonica, EPA; Charles Reddoor, EPA; Ben Shuman, IHS
Moderator: Rob Roy, La Jolla Band of Luiseno Indians and TWAR Steering Committee

10:00 am—12:00 pm: Building a Tribal Mining Program through Collaborations
Details: Back by popular demand! This presentation will provide an overview of tribal mining issues, using hands on activities, and provide perspective and examples of collaboration and partnerships (internally and externally) which have helped shape the Tohono O'odham Mining program, as well as to take a look at potential future cooperative opportunities, including workgroups, funding, outreach, and education. As part of this course you will come to understand basic mining information including life cycle of a mine; learn some history related to mining on tribal lands; be able to differentiate between modern and legacy mining practices; understand some positive and negative impacts of mining unique to tribal communities; and have the chance to discuss ideas about partnering and collaboration, as well as participate in hands-on activities.
Instructor: Laurie Suter, Tohono O’odham Nation

10:00 am—12:00 pm: Available Tools for Calculating Hydrologic Budget Components on Tribal Lands
Details: Using existing national-scale data and models, the USGS and Salish Kootenai College recently estimated mean annual precipitation, evapotranspiration, excess precipitation, streamflow, and water use for the period 1971-2000 for all tribal lands in the conterminous US. This session will introduce the datasets used for this analysis, how budget components were calculated, results of the analysis, and how the results may be used in water resources management. Participants will be shown additional USGS tools that may be used to manage water resources, especially streamflow, for items such as infrastructure protection and tracing the source of water that flows onto or adjacent to Tribal lands.
Instructor: Stephen Hundt, US Geological Survey Idaho Water Science Center

10:00 am – 12:00 pm Waste Needs Assessment & Technical Assistance Discussion with EPA (Regions 9 and 10)
Details: The focus of this interactive listening session will be for Tribal representatives to provide feedback to Tribal Waste program staff at EPA on what technical assistance means to Tribes, their past experiences with EPA technical assistance, and what types of technical assistance that they would like to receive from EPA. Staff from the EPA’s Tribal Waste programs in Regions 9 and 10 will facilitate this session, listen to feedback, and provide information on their Region’s approaches on technical assistance on solid and hazardous waste management. This information exchange will allow EPA staff to learn where technical assistance and programmatic interventions have been and/or could be the most useful. These conversations will help to ensure that EPA’s technical assistance on solid and hazardous waste management is meeting the needs of Tribes and for Tribes to give feedback to inform future work.
Instructors: Kristy Fry, Angel Ip, Ted Jacobson, Rick McMonagle, and Deirdre Nurre, EPA
Moderator: Rob Roy, La Jolla Band of Luiseno Indians and TWAR Steering Committee

9:00 am—10:00 am: Emergency Response: FEMA & EPA Roles & Responsibilities
Details: Federal Program representatives will explain how tribes, states, FEMA and EPA respond to natural events and accidental releases and spills. What are the similarities and differences in how tribes interact with EPA and FEMA? Update on FEMA and EPA emergency management operations and regulations.
Instructor: Nick Nichols, EPA and Bill Sulinckas, FEMA

10:00 am—11:00 am: EPA Office of Emergency Management Oil & Chemical Spills 101
Details: Federal Program representatives will explain how tribes, states, FEMA and EPA respond to natural events and accidental releases and spills. What are the similarities and differences in how tribes interact with EPA and FEMA? Update on FEMA and EPA emergency management operations and regulations.
Instructor: Staff from the Nez Perce Tribe and EPA

11:00 am—12:00 pm: BNSF Railway Specialized Resources & Training
Details: Participants will be introduced to Response Resources provided by BNSF for Planning, Preparedness and Response along with Specialized Training offered to First Responders.
Instructor: James Farner, BNSF Railway
Moderator: Cynthia Naha, Santo Domingo Tribe and TWAR Steering Committee


Everyone attending the 2018 TLEF, including presenters, vendors, and exhibitors, will need to complete the online registration process. To qualify for the early bird registration fee rate of $100, please register below. The registration fee will increase to $125 at midnight on June 30th, 2018. You can read the "TLEF Rates and Dates" deadlines calendar at the link below.

Please note that the request for a Travel Scholarship is part of the registration form. We suggest that you take a look at the information located on the "Travel Scholarship" tab before you begin the registration process and request a Travel Scholarship.

Online registration for the 2018 Tribal Lands and Environment Forum is now closed. You can register for the Forum onsite in Spokane, WA with a rate of $150.

Click HERE to read the "2018 TLEF Rates and Dates" calendar.

TLEF Registration Fee Refund Policy: Check out the new and improved TLEF registration fee refund process by clicking on the "TLEF Refund Policy" below.

Click HERE for the 2018 TLEF Refund Policy. [pdf]

Travel Scholarship

A limited number of travel scholarships are available to employees of federally-recognized tribes who would otherwise not be able to attend the Tribal Lands and Environment Forum. If you are awarded a travel scholarship, ITEP will cover your hotel room charges and tax for a maximum of five nights. You will be responsible for your own transportation and per diem expenses. The deadline for submitting your request for a travel scholarship is Friday, June 1st, 2018.

To request a travel scholarship just check the “Yes, I would like to be considered for a travel scholarship” button on your TLEF registration form. You will also be asked to provide the reasons you are requesting a travel scholarship. Full payment of the TLEF registration fee is required in order for you to receive a travel scholarship.

What ITEP will do:
Requests for travel scholarships closes on June 1st, 2018 and the status of your travel scholarship request will be emailed to you on June 8th, 2018. If you are accepted for a travel scholarship your name will appear on the hotel’s direct bill list. The hotel room will be reserved in your name and ITEP will be responsible for payment of your lodging and tax charges. ITEP will not be responsible for any incidental charges incurred by you. Upon check-in at the hotel, you will be required to provide a credit or debit card to cover the cost of any incidental charges incurred by you.

What you will do:
When you are accepted for a travel scholarship we will send you an email announcement of the award and we ask that you reply to the award email indicating your arrival and departure dates as well as your preference for either a king or double queen bed hotel room. Note that this option is entirely based on the availability of king and double queen hotel rooms. When planning your travel and arrival/departure dates, be advised that these dates must fall within the TELF hotel room block dates; Sunday August 12th through Thursday August 16th. You will be financially responsible for any hotel nights that you request outside of the TLEF room block dates noted above. Please note that the hotel is a smoke free facility.

IMPORTANT INFORMATION AND DATE!! In the event you do not respond to the award notification email that you receive from ITEP indicating your arrival/departure dates by 5:00pm Pacific Time, July 13th, 2018, your travel scholarship request will be cancelled and you will not have a hotel reservation.

Sessions Proposals

The deadline for submitting proposals for this year’s Tribal Lands and Environment Forum has now passed. We will let you know if your proposal has been accepted by the end of May. If you have a proposal that was accepted, please remember to submit a short bio for each presenter included in your presentation. Please note that all potential presenters will need to also register for the forum. Online registration is available via the "Registration Tab

If you were unable to submit a proposal for this year’s Forum, please consider sharing your project and ideas with attendees at this year’s Multi Media Meetup! To sign up for a free table at this year’s MMM, please fill out the form under the "MMM Tab".

MMM (Multi Media Meetup)

The Multi Media Meetup session of the TLEF is a networking opportunity for forum attendees to share information and interact with other attendees in an informal, exhibit-style atmosphere. This special session is an excellent opportunity for:

  • Tribal professionals to highlight their work, sharing their successes with, and garnering feedback from, other attendees;
  • Representatives from various agencies, industries, and organizations to share information on the services and products they provide to tribal professionals and tribes;
  • Researchers and students to provide information on studies and projects they are involved in with other attendees.
The Multi Media Meetup will take place during the TLEF, on Wednesday, August 15th, from 3:30 to 5:00 pm. Requests to participate in the Multi Media Meetup should be submitted no later than July 23rd, 2018.

Participants are encouraged to display materials that discuss unique projects, original research, innovative technologies, or other subjects related to solid waste, UST/LUST, Superfund, brownfields, emergency response, surface and/or groundwater quality, habitat restoration, water facilities, and/or climate change. This session is free to all participants – there are no charges for display tables. ITEP will provide a 6-foot table, chairs, and a limited number of presentation easels, poster board, tape and accessories for your use. Please feel free to bring your own table coverings, dazzling displays or artwork, and/or other items you wish; just be aware that whatever you bring has to fit in front of, on top of, or behind your table. The more you can engage the TLEF attendees the better!

Forum sponsors are not responsible for issues related to copyright or culturally sensitive information. Participants are responsible for shipping and setup/breakdown of all materials before, during and after the session. Any items left behind will be discarded accordingly.


This year’s TLEF will feature special trainings on Monday, August 13th; additional trainings and field trips during the morning of August 14th; the opening plenary in the afternoon of August 14th, which will feature a special keynote speaker; Multi Media Meetup networking event in the afternoon of August 15th; breakout sessions during August 15th and 16th; and the closing plenary in the afternoon of August 16th, which will also feature a special keynote speaker.

2018 TLEF Agenda

Field Trip

Registration for the 2018 field trips is now open! Field trips are booked on a first come, first serve basis. You must register for fieldtrips in advance. To sign up for a field trip, please email Julie Jurkowski (


Bunker Hill Superfund Site: 8:00 am to 5:00 pm
The Bunker Hill Mining and Metallurgical Complex Site in North Idaho was listed on the National Priorities List as a Superfund Site in 1983. The Coeur d’Alene Tribe has been actively involved in the technical and leadership level in both EPA’s remedial process and Natural Resource Damage Assessment as the site lies within the heart of the Tribe’s aboriginal homeland. This tour will be hosted by the Tribe and EPA Region 10 and participants will be able to see historic former mine and mill sites, mine waste repositories, active remediation of mine sites, an acid mine drainage water treatment facility, and downstream wetlands that have been remediated by EPA and restored by the Coeur d’Alene Basin Natural Resource Trustees. Please wear close toed shoes, and bring water, camera, bagged lunch or money to eat at the legendary Snakepit in Enaville, ID.

Colville Confederated Tribes’ Recycling Center: 8:30 am to 5:00 pm
The Colville Confederated Tribes established a recycling center in 2008 which has continued to grow and evolve, becoming an exceptional resource for the Tribes (diverting significant amounts of recyclables from the waste stream, providing good employment for Tribal members, generating revenues through proactive market research, and protecting Mother Earth). This field trip will give attendees the opportunity to tour an extremely successful recycling operation, learn about equipment and staffing needs, and have a chance to talk with Tribal recycling specialists about how they can develop or expand their own recycling operations. Please wear close toed shoes, and bring water, camera, bagged lunch or money to eat at the Tribe’s casino restaurant.

Composting Demonstration and Home Composting Demo Site Tour: 8:00 am to 10:00 am
The City of Spokane offers the Master Composter Certification for community members. This successful Master Composter and Recycler Program has been in effect since 1988. Volunteer Master Composters and Recyclers play an active role in Spokane County’s Regional Solid Waste System by teaching citizens how to reduce waste through recycling and home composting. On this tour you will learn about the program through a presentation, hear from the community master composters, and tour the green zone, the home composting demonstration area. You may even be asked to turn a compost pile! Please make sure to bring comfortable walking attire, a hat, sunscreen, and plenty of water.

Tour of the Spokane Tribe’s Water and Habitat Projects: 8:00 am to 5:00 pm
Employees of the Tribe’s Water and Fish Program are developing a special field trip highlighting their work to protect Tribal waters – and all that rely on this vital source of life. Four different stops will allow attendees to visit the Tribe’s creek restoration projects, fish hatchery, oxygen monitoring activities in lakes, evaluations of tributaries to the Spokane and Columbia Rivers, and native vegetation work. Please make sure to bring comfortable walking attire, a hat, sunscreen, and plenty of water.


Spokane River Brownfields Walking Tour: 8:00 am to 12:00 pm
The City of Spokane was selected for multiple brownfields redevelopment grants along the Spokane River. Much of this redevelopment focuses on cleaning contaminated soils and developing residential housing, expanding campus facilities, and renovating community parks along the river. This walking tour will take you along the Spokane River to visit the Kendall Yards business and residential district, the university district, and the riverfront park brownfields redevelopment. After crossing the river a presentation on Spokane’s brownfields program, local Tribal involvement, and brownfields funding sources will be given. This fieldtrip will take place on Tuesday morning from 8:00am-12:00pm. Please make sure to bring comfortable walking attire, a hat, sunscreen, and plenty of water (~2 miles of walking). Accommodations are available; please let us know in advance.

City of Spokane Waste-to-Energy Facility and Material Recovery Facility (MRF): 8:30 am to 12:00 pm
Tour Spokane’s Materials and Recycling Technology Center (SMaRT Center) and Spokane’s Waste to Energy Facility on Tuesday 8:30- 11:30. The SMaRT Center can process 100,000 tons of recyclables per year and is the centerpiece of a regional strategy aimed at dramatically reducing waste and boosting recycling in the area. The 62,000-square-foot, "single stream" facility allows residents and businesses to recycle a broader assortment of materials, resulting in dramatically higher recycling and diversion rates. The City of Spokane’s Waste to Energy (WTE) Facility is part of the community's overall comprehensive solid waste system that encourages recycling and waste reduction—along with the recovery of energy. The facility processes up to 800 tons of municipal solid waste per day generating enough electricity for 13,000 homes. The process reduces the solid waste by 90 percent by volume and 70 percent by weight. On this tour participants will learn the environmental reasons Spokane County turned to WTE to process its trash 27 years ago and how it has remained the principal means of disposal since. All visitors are required to wear close toed shoes and should dress for the weather. Hard hats and safety glass will be provided. Expect some moderate walking and standing on hard surfaces.

Inland Empire Paper Company: 8:00 am to 12:00 pm
Visit Inland Empire Paper Company to see how a modern papermaking process utilizes all waste materials such as residual wood chips from area sawmills and recycled old newspapers from community collections and other wastepaper suppliers to produce the highest quality groundwood paper available. Field trip participants will be guided through the entire system starting with the warehouse that houses recycled materials in raw form, describing how they get the materials, what contaminants are present, and the research and development processes they have used to discover new technologies for tertiary treatment of the effluent. The tour will also include a viewing of the effluent system and the chip yard followed by a tour of the paper machine where pulp is made into sheets, dried and cut into printer size rolls. Field trip participants must wear long pants and closed toed shoes (no sandals or flip flops).


Hotel Accommodations

Lodging for the 2018 Tribal Lands and Environment Forum attendees is provided by the Davenport Grand, Autograph Collection Hotel. The official deadline for requesting the special TLEF rate has passed. However, you may be able to still make a reservation at the TLEF rate, on a first come first served basis, by calling 509-455-8888. The Spokane Convention Center is a 5 minute walk to the Davenport Grand, Autograph Collection Hotel and it is connected to the Spokane Convention Center by a sky bridge.

Airport and Ground Transportation Information

The hotel offers airport shuttle service to and from the Spokane International Airport, approximately 8 miles. There are 5 airlines flying into the airport including Alaska, American, Delta, Southwest, and United airlines. To arrange for shuttle service, call the hotel and make a shuttle reservation ahead of time.

If you are staying at the Davenport Grand Hotel, call 509-455-8888 to reserve the shuttle ahead of time ($25 one-way). Uber and Lyft rideshare services are other options. The fares are slightly lower ranging from $15-$20 and will depend on surge pricing. To help with costs feel free to carpool with other forum attendees.

If you are driving to the event you can park your car at the hotel. Guests with the TLEF receive a special rate of $12 per night.

Past NTFs:

*Note: links below for presentations will redirect to files on; links to photos are redirected to If you have difficulty accessing these files, please contact ITEP.

2017 TLEF: Cox Business Center
Tulsa, OK
August 14-17, 2017

    Click HERE for Presentations.

    Click HERE for Attendee Networking list. [pdf]

2016 TLEF: Mohegan Sun Resort
Uncasville, CN
August 15-18, 2016

    Click HERE for Presentations.

    Click HERE for Conference Booklet.

    Click HERE for Attendee Networking list.

2015 TLEF: Hyatt Regency
Minneapolis, MN
August 17-20, 2015

    Click HERE for Presentations.

    Click HERE for Conference Booklet.

    Click HERE for Attendee Networking List.

2013 TLEF: Hyatt Regency Tamaya
Pueblo of Santa Ana
August 19-22, 2013

    Click HERE for Presentations.

    Click HERE for Conference Booklet.

    Click HERE for Attendee Networking List.

2012 TLEF: Mill Casino and Hotel, Coquille Indian Tribe
Coos Bay, OR
August 20-23, 2012

    Click HERE for Presentations.

    Click HERE for Attendee Networking List. [pdf]

    Click HERE for Presenter Bios. [pdf]

    Click HERE for Agenda Booklet. [pdf]

2011 TLEF: Radisson Hotel and Conference Center
Oneida/Green Bay, WI
August 23-25, 2011

    Click HERE for Presentations.

2010 TLEF: US Grant Hotel
San Diego, CA
August 24-26, 2010

    Click HERE for Presentations.

For more information please contact:

Todd Barnell, Project Director
Julie Jurkowski, Program Coordinator Sr.

© 2018 Arizona Board of Regents
Northern Arizona University, South San Francisco Street, Flagstaff, Arizona 86011