Monday, November 7, 2011

11/7 Salish Sea News and Weather: Salmon virus, shellfish, fish diet, vehicle rebates, state debt, sewer overflows, dirty air companies, king coal, global warming gases, big ice, good 'shrooms

Spawning Sockeye
Mark Hume in the Globe and Mail writes: “What is killing British Columbia’s salmon? And just where is the crime scene? Like Agatha Christie’s fictional detective, Hercule Poirot, B.C. Supreme Court Justice Bruce Cohen is faced with a mass of conflicting evidence as his federal inquiry tries to answer those questions and explain what happened to millions of salmon that have vanished at sea.” The case of the missing fish  Meanwhile, Craig Welch of the Seattle Times brings the mystery up to date. Anxiety up as more salmon virus found in B.C.

Folks are busy at the Deep Bay Marine Field Station, north of Qualicum Beach, where about half of B.C.’s commercially produced shellfish is cultivated. ‘Seafood University' makes a splash  Meanwhile, down south, Bill Dewey of Taylor Shellfish writes in a guest editorial how the “Taylor family has farmed shellfish in Puget Sound for over a century. The business now faces a challenge to its very existence that we didn't even know about until five years ago: ocean acidification.” Ocean acidification is most urgent threat to marine conservation 

We are what we eat? Phuong Le at Associated Press writes: “Washington waters are supposed to be clean enough to protect people who eat fish from rivers, streams and lakes, but the state standard assumes people can safely eat less than 8 ounces of fish a month. State environmental regulators think that amount is too low.” Wash. wants less risk for people who eat fish

And, if you like to watch: Nooksack Salmon Enhancement Association will show its new short film, "Our Promise," produced locally by Hand Crank Films at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 10, at the Pickford Film Center, 1318 Bay St. Salmon group debuts short film Nov. 10 in Bellingham   

British Columbians will get up to $5,000 off certain new clean energy vehicles starting Dec. 1. Environment Minister Terry Lake said the rebate includes new electric, hydrogen fuel-cell and compressed natural gas vehicles as part of a $17-million program the provincial government hopes will help people make the transition to more sustainable forms of transportation. Electric car rebate offers buzz to eco-friendly B.C. Drivers    Down south, the US government prefers to pay owners of older heavy-duty commercial trucks up to $30,000 to scrap those trucks and buy a newer, less-polluting vehicle. Clunker program on Tacoma Tideflats targets heavy trucks

Does it matter with a $2B budget shortfall? Washington state finished its last budget cycle June 30 with a deficit for the first time in modern record keeping.  State ended up $90 million in the red

Flush it with pride. Port Angeles residents will pay between $189 and $211 this year and up to $241 in 2012 on sewage fees to underwrite the city’s $40M sewage overflow elimination project. They can afford that without state subsidy— according to the state. Port Angeles ineligible for sewage overflow grants; project not overburdening rate payers, according to state's scale

Robert McClure, Lisa Stiffler and Tom Banse at Investigate West detail the sordid tale of big air polluters in the ‘green’ Northwest. Verallia (formerly Saint-Gobain) in south Seattle and Hampton Lumber Mill in Darrington get the area’s ‘black’ cards. Two Industrial Plants Stand Out For Dirty Air Citations   Other ‘high priority violators’ who have the potential for affecting public health include Shell Oil in Anacortes, LaFarge North America in South Seattle, JELD-WEN north side of Klamath Falls, JELD-WEN on the Yakima Reservation, Chemco in Ferndale, US Oil & Refining in Tacoma, Plum Creek in Columbia Fall, Montana, and Berry Plastics in Kent.  EPA's 'High Priority Violators' Scattered Across the Northwest

Curtis Tate of McClatchy News goes deep on how transporting coal has saved the railroad industry— and the industry’s proud of it.  Coal is king on the rails now, but maybe not forever

This might have something to do with burning coal and how we live our lives: The Associated Press reports that “The global output of heat-trapping carbon dioxide jumped by the biggest amount on record, the U.S. Department of Energy calculated, a sign of how feeble the world's efforts are at slowing man-made global warming.”  Biggest jump ever seen in global warming gases

Scientists are monitoring the birth of a monster iceberg about the size of Berlin that will be formed when the shelf of the Pine Island Glacier breaks off that the end of the year or early 2012. Huge iceberg forms in Antarctica

Want to add 238,000 acres to the North Cascades National Park? Opponents are now coming out of the woods. Opposition to park expansion grows  

And, final note about what’s in the woods: Mushroom expert Paul Stamets speaks about how your friend the mushroom can be used to neutralize, digest and decompose toxic wastes and pollutants. The talk’s at  2 p.m., Saturday, Historic Everett Theatre, 2911 Colby Ave., Everett. Fungi expert to work the ‘shroom at Everett talk

Now, your tug weather--
WEST ENTRANCE U.S. WATERS STRAIT OF JUAN DE FUCA- 246 AM PST MON NOV 7 2011
  TODAY
 S WIND 10 TO 15 KT. WIND WAVES 1 OR 2 FT. W SWELL 7 FT AT 11 SECONDS. CHANCE OF SHOWERS.
 TONIGHT
 S WIND 10 TO 15 KT. WIND WAVES 1 OR 2 FT. W SWELL 7 FT AT 11 SECONDS. CHANCE OF SHOWERS.

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