Tuesday, May 26, 2015

5/26 WA lege, Vibrio, 'blob' weather, beach test, Vic sewer, CA spill, Shell drill, BP spill, US Navy, biosolid dump

Barred owls (Paul Bannick/BirdNote)
If you like to listen: Strange Sounds
It's a jungle out there! What an amazing array of sounds birds have to offer! The call of a male Yellow Rail sounds like someone tapping two small stones together. And Turkey Vultures hissing at one another over a carcass sound like a snarling lion. The duet between the male and female Barred Owls seen here is especially raucous. (BirdNote)

State Legislature running out of time in special session
As the Washington Legislature heads into the final week of its special session, few are predicting that lawmakers will finish their work by Thursday. But they do have lots of deadlines pressuring them to finish by the end of June, at the latest. Donna Gordon Blankenship reports. (Associated Press)

Tighter rules aim to limit seafood poisoning from raw oysters
…. Starting this month, there’s a new approach — a first-in-the-nation effort by state health officials and shellfish growers — to curb heat-loving Vp [Vibrio parahaemolyticus] long before it hits the plate. It requires quicker cooling of oysters when air and water temperatures get too warm and closing at-risk commercial beds before illnesses occur. The protocol requires real-time monitoring to determine how fast harvested oysters must be cooled to a safe 50 degrees — and when they shouldn’t be gathered at all. The rules aims to reduce the 40 to 45 infections tied to Washington oysters that are confirmed each year and another 6,000 to 7,000 cases that go undiagnosed, health officials said. JoNel Aleccia reports. (Seattle Times)

Ocean 'blob' could be responsible for warmer temperatures
If you're wondering why British Columbia experienced such a mild winter and early spring, you could maybe blame it on a mysterious "blob" of warm water in the Pacific Ocean. The anomaly was first detected in 2013 by University of Washington climate scientist Nicholas Bond, who coined the term "blob." Since the fall of that year, scientists have been tracking a large mass of water in the Pacific Ocean that is 1,000 kilometres long and at least 2 degrees Celsius warmer than usual. Ocean Networks Canada, which has been studying the phenomenon, says the blob may have formed because a weak low pressure system over the ocean is limiting the mixing of warm waters and cool, nutrient-rich water. Heat is being trapped as a result. (CBC) See also: Q&A: Meteorologist expects warmer, drier start to summer than usual, early start to fire season  Alexis Krell reports. (Tacoma News Tribune)

Officials testing water at popular beaches for bacteria
Officials with the Department of Ecology began testing water this week at over 70 popular beaches around the Puget Sound to check for harmful bacteria that can cause serious illnesses. Bacteria is often to blame for several sick swimmers every year in our region. Officials check popular beaches on a weekly basis to ensure the safety of swimmers. Tom Yazwinski reports. (KCPQ)

Proposed sewer bylaw could mean big costs for Victoria-area homeowners
Homeowners could be forced to make thousands of dollars in repairs or replace cracked or blocked sewer lines on their own properties under a model bylaw being circulated by the Capital Regional District. CRD staff estimate the average cost to repair or replace what’s known as a lateral — the sewer pipe connecting a house to a municipal sewer line — if it’s found to be defective could be between $5,000 and $10,000. The bylaw now being circulated to the municipalities would require homeowners to maintain the sewer pipes on their properties, making sure they are not cracked or broken and that they’re clear of obstructions such as roots or debris and not cross-connected to a storm drain. Bill Cleverley reports. (Times Colonist)

Protesters warn against using chemicals in Santa Barbara County oil spill clean-up
Dozens of protesters chanted "End Oil Now!" and hoisted signs alongside an inflatable mock pipeline on a Santa Barbara beach on Sunday, demanding an end to fracking and other forms of "extreme oil extraction" days after a spill sent thousands of gallons of oil into the ocean and onto beaches. Environmental groups such as Food and Water Watch are also pressing for authorities to publicly rule out the use of chemicals called dispersants in the cleanup of the spill near Refugio State Beach. Christina House reports. (LA Times) See also: Paul Allen was investor in pipeline company behind Calif. spill  Angel Gonalez reports. (Seattle Times)

State To Shell: Long-Term Moorage Of Arctic Drill Rig Unconstitutional
State officials said Friday that it's unconstitutional for Shell Oil to store its Arctic drilling rig at the Port of Seattle's Terminal 5. The Washington Department of Natural Resources sent a letter to Shell Friday, informing the energy giant that short-term mooring of Shell's Polar Pioneer rig at the Port is fine.  But the state constitution prohibits long-term mooring outside of harbors. The Polar Pioneer, a massive floating platform 400 feet long and 292 feet wide, is more than twice as wide as the official harbor area at Terminal 5, where it arrived last week. And for most of Terminal 5's length, its 130-foot-wide harbor area is completely covered by a dock that extends over the water and the state-owned land beneath it. John Ryan reports. (KUOW) See also: Last protester leaves Shell ship after hanging on since Friday   (Associated Press)

Shell chief insists Seattle is best offseason home for drilling rig http://www.seattletimes.com/business/chief-of-shells-arctic-drilling-program-searches-for-the-prize/
Shell’s Ann Pickard says an offshore oil find in the remote Chukchi Sea could eventually yield 1 million barrels of oil daily, and she insists the company has learned from its messy Arctic exploration effort in 2012. Hal Bernton and Coral Garnick report. (Seattle Times)

Once vilified, BP now getting credit for gulf tourism boom
With the Memorial Day holiday here, fallout from the oil spill that left Gulf Coast beaches smeared with gooey tar balls and scared away visitors in 2010 is being credited, oddly, with something no one imagined back then: An increase in tourism in the region. Five years after the BP disaster, the petroleum giant that was vilified during heated town hall meetings for killing a way of life is now being praised by some along the coast for spending more than $230 million to help lure visitors back to an area that some feared would die because of the spill. (Associated Press)

The U.S. Navy’s brutal new war on the Arctic
…. The U.S. Navy already has plans to conduct electromagnetic warfare training in an area close to where I moved to once again seek solace in the mountains: Olympic National Forest and nearby Olympic National Park. And this June, it’s scheduling massive war games in the Gulf of Alaska, including live bombing runs that will mean the detonation of tens of thousands of pounds of toxic munitions, as well as the use of active sonar in the most pristine, economically valuable, and sustainable salmon fishery in the country (arguably in the world).  And all of this is to happen right in the middle of fishing season. Dahr Jamail writes. (Tomdispatch.com) See also: Bombing the Gulf of Alaska  Connie Gallant writes. (Daily Kos)

Navy considering fourth site possibility for submarine escort dock in Port Angeles
The Navy is exploring a fourth alternative for its $16.7 million submarine-escort vessel dock project on Ediz Hook. The site of the fourth alternative will not be released until this fall, according to Navy spokeswoman Liane Nakahara, who said it will be part of the project’s environmental assessment. She said it will be within the area of the Port Angeles Coast Guard station on Ediz Hook. The alternative will be added in light of public comments critical of the existing proposal. Paul Gottlieb reports. (Peninsula Daily News)

Nicola Valley chiefs protest biosolid shipment
The five First Nations chiefs of the Nicola Valley took their fight against biosolids on their land to the B.C. legislature on Monday.  The group is calling on the government to stop importing sewage sludge shipped from the Lower Mainland and the Okanagan into their ancestral lands…. For the last three months, Nicola Valley residents have been maintaining a blockade to prevent trucks transporting sewage sludge from entering the area. (CBC)

Now, your tug weather--
 WEST ENTRANCE U.S. WATERS STRAIT OF JUAN DE FUCA- 300 AM PDT TUE MAY 26 2015
TODAY
W WIND 10 KT BECOMING NW IN THE AFTERNOON. WIND WAVES 2 FT OR LESS. W SWELL 4 FT AT 17 SECONDS.
TONIGHT
W WIND 5 TO 15 KT. WIND WAVES 2 FT OR LESS. W SWELL 5 FT AT 15 SECONDS.

--
"Salish Sea News & Weather" is compiled as a community service by Mike Sato. To subscribe, send your name and email to msato@salishseacom.com. Your email information is never shared and you can unsubscribe at any time.

Salish Sea News: Communicate, Educate, Advocate

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Friday, May 22, 2015

5/22 Shell train, Derek Corrigan, BC Ferries, clean water, grease, anti-drill barge, halibut, wetlands bank

Plankton (Christian Sardet/CNRS/Tara Expeditions)
Census Reveals Universe Of Marine Microbes At Bottom Of The Food Chain
What’s at the bottom of the bottom of the food chain? Well, think small … smaller than you can see. Microbes in the ocean! There are (and scientists have done the math) trillions of microorganisms in the ocean: plankton, bacteria, krill (they’re maybe bigger than “micro,” but not by much), viruses, protists and archaea (they’re like bacteria, but they aren’t bacteria). Christopher Joyce reports. (NPR)

Judge grants county’s motion to dismiss Shell lawsuit; EIS to continue as planned
A lawsuit filed by Shell over Skagit County’s plans to conduct an environmental impact statement on Shell’s proposed unloading oil facility in Anacortes was dismissed Thursday by a Skagit County Superior Court judge. The EIS for the Shell Puget Sound Refinery unloading facility will go forward as planned after Judge Michael E. Rickert granted the county’s motion to dismiss Shell’s request for judicial review. Rickert said the lawsuit Shell brought against the county in March is premature because the scope of the EIS has not been determined. Shannen Kuest reports. (Skagit Valley Herald)

Burnaby Mayor Derek Corrigan ready to end career with pipeline arrest
If push comes to shove, Burnaby Mayor Derek Corrigan is prepared to end his political career getting arrested over the Kinder Morgan pipeline expansion. Those were Corrigan's words to a packed audience at Wednesday night's BROKE meeting at Forest Grove Elementary. He says he would be 'very proud' to go out standing his ground. Jennifer Moreau reports. (Burnaby Now)

BC Ferries cancels cuts to major routes between Vancouver Island and mainland
BC Ferries is dropping plans to cut sailings on its major routes — including Tsawwassen to Swartz Bay, Tsawwassen to Duke Point, and Horseshoe Bay to Departure Bay — and says it will look elsewhere to find savings. The provincial ferry corporation announced two years ago it was looking at saving $4.9 million by reducing service between Vancouver Island and the mainland, as part of a multi-year proposal to save $19 million across the ferry system. Sailings were axed on 16 minor routes in April 2014, and BC Ferries said it would announce service level reductions on the major routes by 2016. But on Thursday the ferry corporation announced it had a second look, and decided the cuts don't make economic sense. (CBC)

Obama Set to Strengthen Federal Role in Clean Water Regulation
The Obama administration is expected in the coming days to announce a major clean water regulation that would restore the federal government’s authority to limit pollution in the nation’s rivers, lakes, streams and wetlands. Environmentalists have praised the new rule, calling it an important step that would lead to significantly cleaner natural bodies of water and healthier drinking water. But it has attracted fierce opposition from several business interests, including farmers, property developers, fertilizer and pesticide makers, oil and gas producers and a national association of golf course owners. Opponents contend that the rule would stifle economic growth and intrude on property owners’ rights. Coral Davenport reports. (NY Times)

Arctic-Drilling Protesters To Move Barge After Damaging Popular Dive Site
Protesters of Arctic drilling have run afoul of the ocean environment in their own small way. In addition to assembling a flotilla of kayaks on Seattle's Elliott Bay last weekend, the activists brought in a construction barge. It's a solar-powered platform for protests against Shell Oil's plans to drill in the Arctic Ocean. But the protesters anchored their solar barge over one of Seattle's most popular sites for scuba diving. Divers complained this week on Facebook about the protest barge's anchors.  They said anchor lines were snagging pilings and other old debris that's turned into habitat over the years. John Ryan reports. (KUOW)

How to get people to stop pouring grease down the drain is Metro Vancouver's $2 million question.
Many people wouldn’t think twice — say, on a Sunday, post-brunch — about cleaning a little one’s sticky fingers with a wet wipe, flushing it, and then washing a greasy frying pan with soap and water. Stop doing that, says Metro Vancouver. Cooking grease and wet wipes in the sewer system cost Metro Vancouver and its municipalities about $2.25 million a year, said Jeff Gogol, an environmental regulatory planner with Metro Vancouver’s liquid waste services division. (Vancouver Sun)

Shellfish harvesting ban lifted for most Whatcom beaches
The state Department of Health has reopened most beaches in Whatcom County to recreational shellfish harvesting after the biotoxin that causes paralytic shellfish poisoning dropped to safe levels. The ban had affected beaches from Sandy Point north to the border, including Point Roberts, but is now lifted. It was the second biotoxin related closure in less than a month. Portage Bay remains closed to the harvest of varnish clams. (Bellingham Herald)

How B.C. halibut became more expensive than Angus beef tenderloin
Supply and demand has led to a major increase in the price of halibut in B.C. With the abundance of halibut available across the province going down, pricing has skyrocketed over the last decade making the fish more expensive than some prized meat cuts. Ten years ago, the price of halibut in Prince Rupert averaged under $12 per pound. Now, that price has shot up to $27 per pound across the city. (CBC)

Kelso wetlands mitigation bank moves forward
A lush tract of land is about to get more lucrative for Kelso by staying just how it is. City Council members voted Tuesday to grant Forterra NW a conservation easement to 240 acres of land along the Coweeman River and into the hills east of Aldercrest Road. The move takes the city a step closer to establishing a 440-acre “mitigation bank,” a process started two years ago. Mitigation banks allow developers to buy credits to offset ecological disturbances their developments will cause, City Manager Steve Taylor said. Brooks Johnson reports. (Longview Daily News)

Now, your weekend tug weather--
WEST ENTRANCE U.S. WATERS STRAIT OF JUAN DE FUCA- 300 AM PDT FRI MAY 22 2015
TODAY
W WIND TO 10 KT. WIND WAVES 1 FT OR LESS. NW SWELL 4 FT AT 8 SECONDS.
TONIGHT
W WIND 5 TO 15 KT. WIND WAVES 2 FT OR LESS. W SWELL 5 FT AT 8 SECONDS. PATCHY DRIZZLE AFTER MIDNIGHT.
SAT
W WIND 5 TO 15 KT. WIND WAVES 2 FT OR LESS. NW SWELL 4 FT AT 8 SECONDS. PATCHY DRIZZLE IN THE MORNING.
SAT NIGHT
W WIND TO 10 KT. WIND WAVES 1 FT OR LESS. NW SWELL 3 FT AT 8 SECONDS.
SUN
W WIND 5 TO 15 KT. WIND WAVES 2 FT OR LESS. NW SWELL 3 FT AT 8 SECONDS.
SUN NIGHT
W WIND 5 TO 15 KT. WIND WAVES 2 FT OR LESS. NW SWELL 3 FT AT 10 SECONDS.
MON
LIGHT WIND...BECOMING W TO 10 KT. WIND WAVES 1 FT OR LESS. NW SWELL 4 FT.
--
"Salish Sea News & Weather" is compiled as a community service by Mike Sato. To subscribe, send your name and email to msato@salishseacom.com. Your email information is never shared and you can unsubscribe at any time.

Salish Sea News: Communicate, Educate, Advocate

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Thursday, May 21, 2015

5/21 Septic gaps, oil spill, B;ham cleanup, ocean acid, coal port, T rex bone, BC ferry, 'Fake Willy,' John Willits


Stubby squid (Susan Middleton/San Juan Journal)
'Spineless'... sea creatures like you've never seen 'em before, at IMA
A portrait of the a Stubby Squid (Rossia Pacifica) is one of the many provocative photographs of creatures of the deep by Susan Middleton, which will be on display as part of San Juan Islands Museum of Art's latest exhibit, 'Spineless,' opening May 23 in Friday Harbor. Scott Rasmussen reports. (San Juan Journal)

KING 5 finds gaps in septic tank inspections
After a two-year-old boy died and a 10-year-old girl was hurt in accidents involving septic tanks, KING 5 examined state and county data and discovered a trail of incomplete records and out of date inspections. The Washington State Department of Health admits it doesn't know exactly how many on-site sewage systems exist in the state. DOH estimates 934,000 exist in the state and 613,000 of those are in the Puget Sound region. Of those, only a fraction are closely monitored. The majority of those are in marine recovery areas where a failure could be catastrophic to the area's waterways. Danielle Leigh reports. (KING)

Pipeline Operator In Calif. Spill Reportedly Had History Of Infractions
The Texas-based company responsible for the undersea pipeline that has leaked tens of thousands of gallons of oil into the sea near the coast at Goleta, Calif., has a history of federal safety violations, The Los Angeles Times reports. The newspaper reports that Plains All American Pipeline has accumulated 175 safety and maintenance infractions since 2006… a nine-mile slick is expected to have a negative impact on some wildlife. Scott Neuman reports. (NPR)

Cleanup work along Bellingham’s waterfront to start this summer
Crews could start work on a more than $35 million environmental cleanup of a polluted Bellingham waterfront site as soon as July. The Port of Bellingham Commission approved a contract for cleaning up the Whatcom Waterway with American Construction Company of Tacoma during its regular Tuesday afternoon meeting, May 19. The vote was 2-1, with Commissioner Mike McAuley opposed. Samantha Wohlfeil reports. (Bellingham Herald)

Fund the race to save marine life from souring seas
Congress must invest in research to combat acidic seawater conditions. Jay Manning and Bill Ruckelshaus write. (Seattle Times Opinion)

Army Corps: ‘We can be flexible’ in giving coal terminal time to respond
In a response sent early this Wednesday morning, May 20, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers told The Bellingham Herald it won’t hold SSA Marine to a strict deadline in its response to Lummi Nation’s assertion that SSA’s coal terminal would interfere with tribal fishing. Ralph Schwartz reports. (Bellingham Heald)

First Dinosaur Fossil Found in Washington State
A large bone from a meat-eating dinosaur has been discovered in the San Juan Islands – the first dinosaur fossil ever found in Washington state. Researchers found the fossil along the shores of Sucia Island State Park in the San Juan Islands. They returned with paleontologists from the Burke Museum at the University of Washington. The fossil they pulled from the rock is from the Late Cretaceous period and is about 80 million years old. The partial thigh bone comes from a two-legged cousin of the Tyrannosaurus rex. It measures 16.7 inches long and 8.7 inches wide. Scientists believe the complete bone was likely more than three feet long. Isolde Raftery reports. (KUOW)

Jack Knox: Ferry-naming contest invites spirit of scorn
On Tuesday, B.C. Ferries invited the public to take part in a contest to name three intermediate-class vessels being built in Poland. On Wednesday, the public replied … and replied … and replied. Gleefully malicious/seditious posts bearing the #NameAFerry hashtag swamped social media. How about SS ShouldveBeenABridge? Or Privatized Backfire? Or Ark of the Government? Or the Knot Pretty, Knot Cheap and Knot Maiden B.C. Jack Knox reports. (Times Colonist)

‘Fake Willy’ could haunt sea lions
A Free Willy impersonator could come to Astoria to scare off sea lions. In its efforts to get sea lions off its docks, the Port of Astoria has had to think outside the box. Thanks to a man from Bellingham, Wash., that could become a lot easier. During his report Tuesday to the Port Commission, Executive Director Jim Knight said the agency has been approached by a man — he didn’t know exactly who it was — from northern Washington with a realistic fiberglass orca whale. Edward Stratton reports. (Daily Astorian)

Shelley Fralic: River Monsters host Jeremy Wade’s excellent B.C. adventure
Jeremy Wade is on the phone Tuesday morning, apologizing for sounding so groggy because he’s still recovering from the previous night’s diving exploration in Puget Sound. In the deeps. In the dark. No, he’s not at liberty to share what he was looking for in the waters around Seattle, or what he found, because that would be giving away the surprises for viewers of the coming Season 8 of Wade’s Discovery Channel hit, River Monsters. Shelley Fralic reports. (Vancouver Sun)

Renowned Port Angeles conservationist John Willits dies at 78
John Willits, a dedicated conservationist whose passion helped preserve hundreds of acres of farmland and wildlife habitat, is dead. He was 78. He died last Friday at his Port Angeles home after a long battle with Parkinson's disease. Rob Ollikainen reports. (Peninsula Daily News)

Now, your tug weather--
WEST ENTRANCE U.S. WATERS STRAIT OF JUAN DE FUCA- 300 AM PDT THU MAY 21 2015
TODAY
W WIND TO 10 KT...BECOMING 5 TO 15 KT IN THE AFTERNOON. WIND WAVES 2 FT OR LESS. W SWELL 5 FT AT 7 SECONDS. AREAS OF FOG IN
 THE MORNING.
TONIGHT
W WIND 10 TO 20 KT...EASING TO 10 KT. WIND WAVES 1 TO 3 FT...SUBSIDING TO 1 FT OR LESS AFTER MIDNIGHT. W SWELL 3 FT AT
 7 SECONDS.
--
"Salish Sea News & Weather" is compiled as a community service by Mike Sato. To subscribe, send your name and email to msato@salishseacom.com. Your email information is never shared and you can unsubscribe at any time.

Salish Sea News: Communicate, Educate, Advocate

Follow on Twitter.

Salish Sea Communications: Truth Well Told

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

5/20 Cherry Pt. coal, oil trains, pipeline spill, otoliths, Columbia orcas, bag ban ban

(PHOTO: Laurie MacBride)
Location, Location, Location
Laurie MacBride in Eye on Environment writes: "It seems that in gardening, as in real estate, it’s “all about location”. When the plants in the photo above appear in my flower or veggie beds, I call them “weeds” and rip them out – especially if they’re about to set seed. But when they grow in a small grassy area outside our garden fence, near the edge of the forest, I call them “a wild flower meadow”….

SSA Marine: We need more time to respond to Lummi concerns about coal terminal
The company that would build a coal terminal at Cherry Point told a federal agency it needs more time to respond to a tribe’s request to shut down the project. Seattle-based SSA Marine said in a May 12 letter to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers it needs about 90 days to respond in full to Lummi Nation’s claims that the terminal and associated vessel traffic would interfere with the tribe’s traditional fishing practices, as protected in an 1855 treaty. Ralph Schwartz reports. (Bellingham Herald)

A flotilla protesting 'bomb trains' planned for final round of U.S. Open
Players dissatisfied with the rub of the green at Chambers Bay apparently won’t be the only protesters at the U.S. Open next month. Several groups — Olympia Fellowship of Reconciliation, the Backbone Campaign, and the People’s Climate Action Fleet — are planning an offshore environmental protest during the final round of the Open.  John Strege reports. (Golf Digest)

Tesoro Announces Rail Car Upgrades
Oil company Tesoro announced Monday it’s upgrading the fleet of tank cars it uses to carry crude oil by rail. The company moves crude oil by train through the Pacific Northwest to its refinery in Anacortes, Washington. Officials with the company said it will add 210 “enhanced” tank cars. According to Tesoro executives, the new tank cars exceed federal standards announced earlier this month. A company spokeswoman said they expect to have about half of the cars in service before the end of the year. Conrad Wilson reports. (Oregon Public Broadcasting)

Oil pipeline spills about 21K gallons off California coast
A broken pipeline spilled 21,000 gallons of crude oil into the ocean before it was shut off Tuesday, creating a slick stretching about 4 miles along the central California coastline, the U.S. Coast Guard said. Authorities responding to reports of a foul smell near Refugio State Beach around noon found a half-mile slick already formed in the ocean, Santa Barbara County Fire Capt. Dave Zaniboni said. They traced the oil to the onshore pipeline that spilled into a culvert running under the U.S. 101 freeway and into a storm drain that empties into the ocean. (Associated Press)

BNSF won’t face possible fine on oil spill reporting until January http://www.bellinghamherald.com/2015/05/19/4302481/bnsf-wont-face-possible-fine-on.html
It likely will be January 2016 before it is decided if BNSF Railway should face fines for what state rail regulators said was improper reporting of crude oil and other hazardous materials spills. BNSF, the largest railroad operating in Washington, met with state Utilities and Transportation Commission representatives Monday, May 18, to schedule a hearing related to more than a dozen hazardous materials spills across the state between Nov. 1, 2014, and Feb. 24, 2015. The parties asked to meet again at 9:30 a.m. Jan. 19, 2016, at the commission’s hearing room in Olympia, in order to accommodate summer vacations and ensure there is enough time to complete testimony or come up with a settlement by this fall, said UTC spokeswoman Amanda Maxwell. Samantha Wohlfeil reports. (Bellingham Herald)

Using Fish Ear Bones To Track Salmon
If you were to catch a salmon in Puget Sound, chances are you won’t be able to say exactly where that fish came from. That’s because salmon spawn in rivers and streams and then swim hundreds or even thousands of miles to the ocean to mature. Some new research could help fisheries managers better protect salmon by studying their ear bones - that’s right, ear bones. They're called otoliths and they help fish with balance and hearing. They come in different shapes and sizes, depending on the type of fish, but they share a common, very cool, growth pattern. Each year, the otolith adds a ring, just like a tree trunk. Those rings are incredibly valuable to scientists like Sean Brennan because they reveal where the fish spent time over the course of that year. Ashley Ahearn reports. (KUOW)

Orca calf and mom spotted inside Columbia’s entrance
Commercial fishermen returning from a shrimp trip spotted two orcas about two miles inside the Columbia River earlier this week. Clint Beasley, who operates the Brookings, Ore.-based fishing vessel Prolifik, snapped a photo: two dorsal fins, one large and one small, rise above the water. The crew of the Prolifik said the orcas swam close to the boat before moving on. Beasley said he thought the orcas were a calf and its mom. (Chinook Observer)

Councilman seeks to overturn Lacey plastic bag ban
A Lacey city councilman, armed with some recent data, is set to discuss the city’s current plastic bag ban, a ban he hopes can be overturned or at least put to a vote of the people. Councilman Lenny Greenstein has initiated the conversation, and the larger discussion will take place during a Lacey City Council work session set for 7 p.m. Thursday at Lacey City Hall, 420 College St. SE…. The Thurston County Solid Waste Advisory Committee, made up of elected officials from each jurisdiction, began the plastic bag ban ordinance process more than two years ago. But as part of the process in developing the ordinance, the stakeholders agreed to a follow-up survey six months after the ordinance took effect, said Terri Thomas, waste reduction supervisor for the county. Rolf Boone reports. (Olympian)

Now, your tug weather--
WEST ENTRANCE U.S. WATERS STRAIT OF JUAN DE FUCA- 300 AM PDT WED MAY 20 2015
TODAY
W WIND TO 10 KT. WIND WAVES 1 FT OR LESS. W SWELL 3 FT AT 10 SECONDS.
TONIGHT
W WIND 5 TO 15 KT. WIND WAVES 2 FT OR LESS. W SWELL 3 FT AT 10 SECONDS.

--
"Salish Sea News & Weather" is compiled as a community service by Mike Sato. To subscribe, send your name and email to msato@salishseacom.com. Your email information is never shared and you can unsubscribe at any time.

Salish Sea News: Communicate, Educate, Advocate

Follow on Twitter.

Salish Sea Communications: Truth Well Told



Tuesday, May 19, 2015

5/19 Crow song, Shell drill, BC LNG, WY coal, John Dodge, Vigor Vigilant

(PHOTO: Marlin Harms/BirdNote)
If you like to listen: Do Crows Sing?
Yes! Each crow’s song is particular to its social group. It’s been said that if someone knows only three birds, one of them will be the crow. They’re common, easy to see, and even easier to hear. But crow voices are complicated. Altogether, crows may use 30 sound elements in different combinations, and one of the most intriguing is their song. Unlike many birds, crows don’t sing loudly to attract mates from a distance. Instead, they sing softly — and at close range — during courtship, with a mix of soft cooing, rattles, growls, bowing movements, and mutual nuzzling. (BirdNote)

Demonstrators leave peacefully after protest against Shell oil rig
Hundreds of people on Monday danced, sang, held protest banners and listened to speeches at a Monday protest billed as a “mass direct action” in front of the gates to the Port of Seattle’s Terminal 5. Some participants were willing to engage in peaceful, nonviolent civil disobedience. But there were no confrontations with police, no arrests and also no certainty about what disruptions were achieved by the time the protest finished in the early afternoon. Hal Bernton reports. (Seattle Times)

City of Seattle Issues Violation Notice To Shell, Port And Foss
Seattle planning officials say the Arctic drill rig at the Port of Seattle has to leave or get a new permit by June 4th. The city issued a notice of violation to the Port of Seattle, Shell Oil and Foss Maritime Monday afternoon. The notice says the port's permit is only good for cargo ships, not oil rigs like the Polar Pioneer. "We think that is ridiculous and transparently political," said Foss spokesman Paul Queary.  The company appealed the city ruling last week and is continuing to work on the Shell oil rig. "We expect to prevail in the appeal." John Ryan reports. (KUOW)

Controversial LNG energy project faces environmental review
The Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency has restarted its review of Pacific NorthWest LNG after an 11-week delay, putting the regulator in a position to issue a draft report on whether to grant conditional approval to the controversial B.C. energy project. The draft report by CEAA will serve as a regulatory road map for Pacific NorthWest LNG as it strives to construct a massive terminal to export liquefied natural gas, despite objections from the Lax Kw’alaams First Nation. Lax Kw’alaams members recently overwhelmingly rejected a $1-billion cash offer over 40 years from the LNG venture led by Malaysia’s state-owned Petronas, declining to give aboriginal consent to the project. Brent Jang reports. (Globe and Mail)

Wyoming governor pushes coal ports on Northwest trip
Faced with sliding domestic demand for coal, the governor of Wyoming has kept pressing for access to deep-water ports in the Northwest that would allow exports to Asian markets. Wyoming Gov. Matt Mead met Monday with Washington Gov. Jay Inslee in Olympia and plans to meet Tuesday with Oregon Gov. Kate Brown…. The stakes are high for Wyoming — the nation's leading coal-producing state — to find new markets. The state Infrastructure Authority released a study in March that predicts stricter federal regulations could force a decline of up to 45 percent in Powder River Basin coal production by 2030. The Wyoming Legislature this year authorized issuing up to $1 billion in state bonds if necessary to finance coal port construction. Ben Neary reports. (Associated Press)

Celebrate John Dodge’s career with The Olympian
Longtime environmental reporter and columnist John Dodge is retiring from The Olympian so he can finish his book on the 1962 Columbus Day storm. We’re throwing a party and inviting everyone. Come wish him well. The reception will run 4-6 p.m. Thursday, May 28, in the Community Room at The Olympian, 111 Bethel St., Olympia. Please join us. (Olympian)

Citizens Ask Island County commissioners to halt “irreparable injury” from jets
Island County Commissioners faced a room full of concerned and sometimes tearful Whidbey Island residents requesting specific actions be taken in response to documented proofs of on-going health harms. Proof of noise inflicted injuries were presented to the commissioners at their May 12 meeting in the form of declarations from medical experts, a local practicing physician, an acoustical expert, and victims suffering health problems attributed to the hazardous noise from low-flying Navy ‘Growler’ jets.  (Islands Weekly)

A mammoth floating rig — not for oil — sails into Seattle
One floating Goliath of the maritime industry arrived in Seattle’s Elliott Bay without controversy this week: a 528-foot-long dry dock for Vigor Industrial. The semi-submersible dock Vigilant, which can lift large ships of up to 14,000 tons out of the water so people can work on them, will double the capacity at Vigor’s main shipyard. Under prior ownership, the shipyard, on the north end of Harbor Island, was known as Todd. Steve Wilhelm reports. (Puget Sound Business Journal)

Now, your tug weather--
WEST ENTRANCE U.S. WATERS STRAIT OF JUAN DE FUCA- 300 AM PDT TUE MAY 19 2015
TODAY
W WIND 5 TO 15 KT. WIND WAVES 2 FT OR LESS. W SWELL 4 FT AT 11 SECONDS. AREAS OF FOG IN THE MORNING.
TONIGHT
W WIND 10 TO 20 KT...BECOMING SW 5 TO 15 KT. WIND WAVES 1 TO 3 FT. W SWELL 3 FT AT 10 SECONDS.

--
"Salish Sea News & Weather" is compiled as a community service by Mike Sato. To subscribe, send your name and email to msato@salishseacom.com. Your email information is never shared and you can unsubscribe at any time.

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Monday, May 18, 2015

5/18 Drought, volcano, no Shell, spills, trains, CG app, poaching, Skagit study, Navy warfare, Seaterra, crows

(Seattle Times)
Inslee declares statewide drought emergency
A widespread lack of snowfall this season has left Washington state in a deepening drought, and the prospects are grim: threats to crops and fish and increasing worries about wildfires. (Seattle Times)

The 'hidden' Cascade volcano that poses a threat
Monday marks the 35th anniversary of the eruption of Mount St. Helens that killed 57 people. Mount Rainier is considered the world's most dangerous volcano because of its size and how close it is to the population centers of Tacoma and Seattle. But there's another mountain you've probably never seen that's finally getting attention for the risks it poses to our northern counties. Glacier Peak lurks within the northern Cascade Mountains. Unlike most of the other Cascade volcanos viewable from I-5 or even Seattle, this is the mountain no one notices. Yet Glacier Peak sits within the borders of Snohomish County and has a record of violent, even extreme eruptions. Glenn Farley reports. (KING)

35 years after Mount St. Helens erupted: A new world of research
The eruption of Mount St. Helens — 35 years ago Monday — coincided with an explosion in digital and cellular technology. When the volcano erupted on May 18, 1980, the fledgling company Microsoft had just developed the MS-DOS operating system. The online world was still a novelty. Cellphones were unheard of in the United States, and GPS was being developed for aiming missiles. Volcano research changed so suddenly and dramatically in the decades after the eruption that stories about the old days — when geologists ventured into erupting volcanoes to take measurements with tools as basic as surveyors’ transits and tape measures — seemed like tales from the ancient and almost unbelievable past. Rob Carson reports. (Tacoma News Tribune) See also: 35 years after Mount St. Helens’ deadly eruption, the volcano has become a laboratory  Phuong Le reports. (Associated Press) And also: Soundings: Mount St. Helens habitat growing in complexity  John Dodge reports. (Olympian)

Anti-Arctic drilling activists hold 'Shell No' protest
Hundreds of activists decked out in neoprene wetsuits and life jackets took to the waters of Elliott Bay on Saturday in kayaks, canoes, paddleboards and other vessels to send the message that Royal Dutch Shell should cancel its plan to drill in the Arctic Ocean. The "Paddle in Seattle" - a daylong, family friendly festival in a West Seattle park and an on-the-water protest by "Shell No" kayaktivists - was held only blocks from where Shell's Polar Pioneer drilling rig is docked at the Port of Seattle's Terminal 5. The brightly colored boats lined the grass as paddlers loaded gear while lights on the towering rig twinkled in the background. Martha Bellisle reports. (Associated Press)

Seattle Port Commissioner Bill Bryant launches campaign for governor
Two-term Seattle Port Commissioner Bill Bryant, in the limelight as a supporter of the Shell Oil home port, launched his campaign for governor on Thursday just as the Arctic drilling rig Polar Pioneer was pulling into Terminal 5 at the port. Joel Connelly reports. (SeattlePI.Com) More: Puget Sound activist Fred Felleman and others file as candidates for Bryant’s vacated position, King County Elections.

Oil tanker spill off Vancouver would reach shorelines within hours: study
If a large tanker spilled a fifth of its oil while under the Lions Gate Bridge, the toxic substance would float out into English Bay within two hours, and likely begin washing up on the shores of tony West Vancouver within six hours, if no response was launched by authorities. In nine hours, absent any official response, the tide would have carried about the equivalent amount of oil into Coal Harbour that was estimated to have spilled from the MV Marathassa’s bunker fuel tanks last month. Within 40 hours, the wind and tidal currents would have combined to bring thousands of litres of oil into Burrard Inlet and its surrounding shorelines, causing significant harm to the local economy, population and environment. Mike Hager reports. (Globe and Mail)

Freight Railroads In Northwest Unlikely To Meet Deadline To Install Safety Upgrade
Freight railroads in the Northwest appear unlikely to meet an end-of-the-year deadline to install the type of system safety regulators say could have prevented Tuesday's deadly Amtrak crash in Philadelphia. The technology is designed to automatically stop or slow a a speeding train when it senses an accident or collision could occur. It will also be programmed to know the speed limit on every stretch of rail, so if a train is going too fast for whatever reason, it will initiate automatic braking. Tom Banse reports. (KUOW) See also: Railroads required to plan for a worst-case oil train spill in Washington state  Under a new state law signed by Gov. Jay Inslee on Thursday, May 14, large railroads will be required to plan with the state for “worst-case spills” from crude oil unit trains, but exactly what that worst-case scenario looks like is not yet clear. Samantha Wohlfeil reports. (Bellingham Herald)

Coast Guard introduces free smartphone app for mariners
The Coast Guard has gone high-tech for the average mariner with a smartphone. It released its first-ever boating safety app for mobile devices Saturday. The free app is available on Apple App Store and Google Play online store, and is designed to provide boating safety resources to mariners. Features include state boating information, a safety equipment checklist, free boating safety check requests, navigation rules, float plans and calling features to report pollution or suspicious activity.  When location services are enabled, users can receive the latest weather reports from the closest National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration weather buoys as well as report the location of a hazard on the water. David G. Sellars reports. (Peninsula Daily News)

Poachers Get Rich Harvesting This Sea Snail To Near Extinction
In a dark fish tank at a government-run lab, a striking sea snail slowly inches from its hiding spot. It’s a pinto abalone, and its numbers are dangerously low in Washington state after decades of overharvesting and poaching. This little-known animal is a delicacy, still served in U.S. restaurants, and its shell is a source of mother-of-pearl. Ashley Ahearn reports. (KUOw)

Federal scientists push for protection from political interference
Public-service unions are asking the federal government for the first time to enshrine scientific integrity language into their collective agreements. The language is intended to ensure that researchers employed by the government can speak openly about their work, publish results without fear of censorship and collaborate with peers. With contract negotiations set to resume this week, there will also be a series of demonstrations for the Ottawa area on Tuesday to focus attention on the issue. Ivan Semeniuk reports. (Globe and Mail)

Without funding, Skagit River General Investigation Study faces unclear future
…. The threat of what is termed a “100-year flood” is why the corps and Skagit County have worked since 1993 on the Skagit River General Investigation Study; its goal is to create a plan to minimize the effects of a major flood. But in April, Skagit County cut off funding for the study after deciding the process had drawn out too long. Over 22 years the county has spent $7.2 million. What is next for the GI study isn’t clear. Kimberly Cauvel reports. (Skagit Valley Herald)

Flood of public comments pushes back Navy plans for electronic warfare testing on Peninsula
A flood of public comments has pushed back the Navy's target date for an $11.5 million expansion of electronic-warfare range activities on the Olympic Peninsula from September to early 2016. The U.S. Forest Service, which had said a decision on a Navy request for a permit would be made by September, is hiring a third-party contractor to handle the 3,314 comments it received in response to the Navy's special-use permit application. That will push the Forest Service decision to early 2016, agency spokesman Glen Sachet said last week. Paul Gottlieb reports. (Peninsula Daily News)

CRD urged to disband Seaterra sewage body
Pressure is mounting on local politicians to dismantle Seaterra, the arm’s-length body mandated by the province to build Greater Victoria’s sewage treatment plant. Capital Regional District directors have received a petition from local business owners complaining it is ludicrous to be spending more than $100,000 a month on Seaterra to manage building a sewage treatment plant at McLoughlin Point when that plan is no longer being considered. Bill Cleverley reports. (Times Colonist)

‘Vicious’ dive-bombing crows back terrorizing shopping centre
High above the stores in Clover Square Village shopping centre, a pair of nesting crows are once again vigorously defending their turf, forcing customers to duck and dash to avoid them. “They’re vicious little things — I’m scared of them now,” said Tricia Lawrence, who has been attacked five times in the past few weeks. “The last time, it got me twice … I screamed like an idiot.” (Surrey Now/Vancouver Sun)

Now, your tug weather--
WEST ENTRANCE U.S. WATERS STRAIT OF JUAN DE FUCA- 300 AM PDT MON MAY 18 2015
TODAY
NW WIND TO 10 KT. WIND WAVES 1 FT OR LESS. W SWELL 4 FT AT 12 SECONDS.
TONIGHT
W WIND 10 TO 20 KT...BECOMING 5 TO 15 KT. WIND WAVES 1 TO 3 FT. W SWELL 4 FT AT 11 SECONDS.
--
"Salish Sea News & Weather" is compiled as a community service by Mike Sato. To subscribe, send your name and email to msato@salishseacom.com. Your email information is never shared and you can unsubscribe at any time.

Salish Sea News: Communicate, Educate, Advocate

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Friday, May 15, 2015

5/15 Shell drill, safe train, BP spill, coal stock, no-coal tribes, Ericksen's education, green oil $, test oysters, NOAA species, opah blood

Polar Pioneer in Seattle (KUOW/Gil Aegerter)
Shell Oil Rig Arrives At Port Of Seattle
Environmental activists in kayaks paddled into the middle of Seattle's Elliot Bay  on Thursday afternoon to meet -- or, as they say, "un-welcome" -- a huge Shell oil rig to the city. John Ryan reports. (KUOW) More protests planned after giant oil rig muscles in  Activists expect a larger turnout Saturday, when a flotilla rally is scheduled against the Polar Pioneer’s presence in Seattle. Another big event is planned for Monday near Terminal 5. Daniel Beekman and Coral Garnick report. (Seattle Times)

Gov. Inslee signs oil train safety bill
Gov. Jay Inslee signed into law a measure Thursday that attempts to improve the safety of oil transportation as a sharp increase in trains carrying volatile crude oil poses new safety and environmental risks in the state. A compromise reached on the last day of the regular legislative session resolved differences between competing bills in the Senate and House. Phuong Le and Rachel La Corte report. (Associated Press)

Gulf oil disaster film: The last word belongs to …?
The invisible in Margaret Brown’s documentary The Great Invisible (available on Netflix and online on PBS’s Independent Lens until May 21) refers to both the damage done to the lives and landscape of the Gulf Coast following the Deepwater Horizon oil spill (the largest in U.S. history), and the free pass awarded to BP in the years after the disaster. Sure, they paid billions of dollars in fines and fees to clean up the spill, but the amount will add up to a drop in their endless bucket of oil profits. The company continues to drill new offshore wells, hidden from view and unscathed by government regulations, while the devastation from the accident resulted in both a human and environmental post-traumatic stress that neither BP, the United States government, the media, nor the rest of us care to think about. Out of sight, out of mind. Rustin Thompson reports. (Crosscut)

UW Becomes Biggest University To Give Coal Investments The Boot
The University of Washington’s Board of Regents voted to sell off its investments in thermal coal. That’s the kind of coal used to generate power. It’s a big deal because the university has only “divested” its endowment three times before: with South Africa, tobacco and Sudan. Joshua McNichols reports. (KUOW) In symbolic move, UW votes to divest from coal  Regents at the University of Washington voted unanimously Thursday to divest the university’s endowment from coal companies, but they refused to touch investments in other fossil fuels. Leah Todd reports. (Seattle Times)

Tribes stand against coal-export terminal
Leaders from nine Native American tribes have urged the Army Corps of Engineers to deny permits for a proposed coal-export terminal near Bellingham. The leaders from Washington, British Columbia and Montana met in Seattle on Thursday to oppose the Gateway Pacific Terminal at Cherry Point. That project would export as much as 48 million tons of coal each year from Montana and Wyoming to Asia. (Seattle Times)

Coal barges nixed in FSD plan, Lafarge says 20 to 30 jobs gone
Open barges will not be transporting four million tonnes of U.S. coal per year to Texada Island under a new plan announced May 4 by Fraser Surrey Docks (FSD). Coal barging opponents were “cautiously optimistic” over the revised plan, which would see the same volume of coal loaded directly onto ocean-going ships in Surrey…. If the plan is approved by Port Metro Vancouver, FSD said it intends to replace all barges with 80 ocean-going vessels per year, “but would retain barging as a potential secondary option.” The announcement means the loss of up to 30 future jobs at Lafarge Canada’s loading facility on Texada Island, the company said Monday. John Gleeson reports. (Coast Reporter)

Ericksen to conservative media: Schools feed climate activists ‘propaganda’
Sen. Doug Ericksen, R-Ferndale, had a response Tuesday, May 12, for students who would have his Western Washington University degree revoked. He felt sorry for them. In an interview Tuesday, May 12, on a Freedom Foundation podcast called “Freedom Daily,” Ericksen blamed the universities and public schools for feeding students “a line of propaganda” that has made them into partisan climate activists. “I really feel sorry for these young people, in our colleges and our public schools today because they’re being fed such a line of propaganda, and it’s such a heavily partisan atmosphere,” Ericksen said in the podcast, hosted by Ron Valencia of the Freedom Foundation… Ralph Schwartz reports. (Bellingham Herald)

Phillips 66 donates $166,000 to local nonprofits
Phillips 66 has donated a total of $166,000 to five Whatcom County nonprofit organizations. The grants are going to the Northwest Straits Foundation ($50,000), Whatcom Community Foundation ($50,000), United Way of Whatcom County ($41,000) and the Boys & Girls Clubs of Whatcom County ($25,000). According to a company news release, Phillips 66 wanted to focus on public safety and health with this round of grants. The Northwest Straits Foundation will use the grant to fund its Derelict Fishing Gear Program, which removes lost or abandoned fishing gear from the Salish Sea. Dave Gallagher reports. (Bellingham Herald)

'State of Oyster Study' to test Hood Canal, Puget Sound shellfish for health
How safe are your oysters? Each year Washington Sea Grant’s State of the Oyster Study helps shoreline dwellers determine whether the oysters and clams on their beaches are safe to eat or contaminated with potentially harmful bacteria. Residents are invited to gather five large oysters or 24 clams from their beaches, bag them securely, and deliver them on designated collection days (May 17, June 14, July 5, or Aug. 2)to any of four sites on South Hood Canal and South Puget Sound. For modest fees, a lab will test these samples for fecal coliform bacteria and/or Vibrio parahaemolyticus, a common bacterium that can sicken people who eat raw shellfish, and report the results by phone within 10 days…. For more information, contact Teri King or Jennifer Runyan at Washington Sea Grant, 360.432.3054, wsgcanal@uw.edu. (Port Townsend Leader)

Kamloops fined for spilling 4,100 cubic metres of sewage into river
The city of Kamloops is coming clean about a series of mistakes that led to untreated sewage being released into the South Thompson River. Eight months ago, 4,100 cubic metres -- or the capacity of two Olympic size swimming pools -- of sewage spilled from a sewer lift station into nearby ditches and creeks. That spill in the Dallas area led the province's Community Environmental Justice Forum to order the city of Kamloops spend $20,000 to do rehabilitation work on the Tranquille River. It must also pay $8,000 to upgrade alarm systems at all sewer locations to prevent a similar accident from happening undetected. (CBC)

Species in the Spotlight campaign highlights NOAA Fisheries' endangered species conservation efforts
NOAA Fisheries announced [5/14] a new Species in the Spotlight campaign to focus recovery and public education efforts on eight marine species that are at risk of extinction. The eight species highlighted, all listed as endangered under the Endangered Species Act, are the Gulf of Maine population of Atlantic salmon, Central California Coast coho salmon, Cook Inlet beluga whales, Hawaiian monk seals, Pacific leatherback sea turtles, Sacramento River winter-run chinook salmon, Southern Resident killer whales in Puget Sound, and California Coast white abalone. (Phys.Org)

Scientists identify opah as world's first fully warm-blooded fish
Deep in the ocean, scientists have found the first known example of a fish with warm blood. The large circular fish is called an opah, or sometimes a moonfish, and researchers have determined that it can keep its internal temperature 5 degrees Celsius warmer than its environment…. There are other fish in the sea capable of elevating the temperature of specific parts of their bodies. For example, some families of tuna and sharks are able to warm their aerobic swimming muscles. Billfish, including sailfish and marlin, are able to warm their eye and brain region. However, until now, no fish had ever been discovered that can warm its entire body. Deborah Netburn (LA Times)

Now, your weekend tug weather--
 WEST ENTRANCE U.S. WATERS STRAIT OF JUAN DE FUCA- 300 AM PDT FRI MAY 15 2015
TODAY
SW WIND 10 KT...BECOMING NW 10 TO 20 KT IN THE AFTERNOON. WIND WAVES 1 FT...BUILDING TO 1 TO 3 FT. W SWELL 5 FT AT 9 SECONDS.
TONIGHT
W WIND 10 TO 20 KT...BECOMING SW TO 10 KT. WIND WAVES 1 TO 3 FT...SUBSIDING TO 1 FT. W SWELL 4 FT AT 8 SECONDS. A CHANCE OF
 SHOWERS AFTER MIDNIGHT.
SAT
LIGHT WIND...BECOMING W TO 10 KT IN THE AFTERNOON. WIND WAVES 1 FT OR LESS. W SWELL 4 FT AT 7 SECONDS. A CHANCE OF
 SHOWERS.
SAT NIGHT
W WIND TO 10 KT IN THE EVENING...BECOMING LIGHT. WIND WAVES 1 FT OR LESS. W SWELL 4 FT AT 14 SECONDS.
SUN
LIGHT WIND...BECOMING NW TO 10 KT IN THE AFTERNOON. WIND WAVES 1 FT OR LESS. W SWELL 4 FT AT 14 SECONDS.
--
"Salish Sea News & Weather" is compiled as a community service by Mike Sato. To subscribe, send your name and email to msato@salishseacom.com. Your email information is never shared and you can unsubscribe at any time.

Salish Sea News: Communicate, Educate, Advocate

Follow on Twitter.

Salish Sea Communications: Truth Well Told