Tuesday, January 15, 2013

1/15 Enbridge, climate change, steelhead habitat, Japanese Gulch, culverts, flatfish, Western Flyer

Northern Gateway protest (CBC News)
Thousands of people gathered during a rare Vancouver snowfall to mark the start of community hearings on the proposed Northern Gateway pipeline. Opponents of the project were bolstered on Monday by the nationwide Idle No More campaign, which brought First Nations from as far as the Haisla Nation on the North Coast, near the would-be tanker port of Kitimat, B.C. At Victory Square, protesters gathered before marching to the site of the hearings in the city's downtown and sending a message to the panel now touring B.C.  Thousands jeer Northern Gateway hearings in Vancouver  

Freezing weather with light snow flurries greeted about 200 climate activists gathered on the steps of the state Capitol noon Monday to demand the state Legislature get serious about climate change. The climate rally unfolded four hours after the highest predicted tide of 2013 in Budd Inlet. Climate activists draw attention to the winter high tides, calling them a precursor of a future shoreline under siege from sea-level rise. The irony of Monday’s cold weather compared to a global climate that is heating due to a carbon dioxide buildup in the atmosphere was not lost on the crowd, or some of the speakers. John Dodge reports. High tide hits as rally calls attention to climate

Nearly all the Kitsap Peninsula would be among areas designated as "critical habitat" for Puget Sound steelhead under a federal proposal announced Monday. If approved, it would be the first time that East Kitsap has been designated as critical habitat for any fish listed under the Endangered Species Act, said Kathleen Peters, salmon recovery coordinator for the East Kitsap region."This is a big deal," Peters said, noting that the designation could bring increased restoration and research dollars to the eastern, more urbanized side of the peninsula. For the first time, plans to protect and recover salmon and steelhead runs will need to account for streams across the entire Kitsap Peninsula, Peters added. Christopher Dunagan reports. East Kitsap designated as steelhead habitat  

Supporters of preserving forest land in Japanese Gulch suffered a narrow defeat at the ballot box in November, but already they're hitting the trail again for their cause. City Councilwoman Jennifer Gregerson is calling for the council to put a measure on the primary election ballot in August to authorize the City Council to raise taxes toward buying the property. Mayor Joe Marine was scheduled Tuesday to go before Snohomish County officials to ask for $1.5 million in conservation grant funds.  Bill Sheets reports. Another try for Japanese Gulch protection  

U.S. District Judge Ricardo Martinez says he is ready to issue a final order requiring the state to repair and replace culverts that are blocking the path of salmon. In an order issued Friday, Martinez recounted the long history of hearings and negotiations between the state and 21 tribes that filed suit over state-owned culverts. The first issues in the case were raised in 2001, when the parties were encouraged to settle by negotiation, Martinez noted. Martinez ruled five years ago that the state had a duty under the 1850s treaties to "refrain from building or operating culverts under state-maintained roads that hinder fish passage and thereby diminish the number of fish that would otherwise be available for tribal harvest." Christopher Dunagan reports. Final ruling coming in culvert case  

Puget Sound flatfish, generally called flounder or sole, exist in enormous numbers in our local waters. There are said to be 23 different species in Puget Sound, including halibut and starry flounder (which can reach up to three feet long). I caught one flatfish which had to be 10-15 pounds off Point Monroe long ago and released it, thinking it might be a halibut or the last of its species. Never seen one like it since. Every now and then you hear about a few halibut caught in the north Sound, but I've never heard of one in the Central Sound. Small flounder and sole are a different story. Dave Shorett tell fish stories. Flatfish are easy catching, good eating  

The owner of John Steinbeck’s storied fishing boat, the Western Flyer, is leaving Salinas on Wednesday for the Puget Sound to begin the arduous tasking of raising the 70-foot vessel off the bottom of a narrow channel near Anacortes, Wash., after it sank over the weekend. Again. The Flyer went down in about 30 feet of water in October in Swinomish Channel off of Skagit Bay, about 40 miles north of Seattle. Gerry Kehoe, who said he plans to restore the multi-ton boat and bring it back to the Central Coast to be featured in a downtown Salinas restaurant, salvaged the boat after the first sinking. Because of nearly 900 gallons of oil aboard the vessel when it first sank, the salvage operation included a massive environmental cleanup that pushed the cost to “close to six figures,” Kehoe said on Monday. The purse seiner — a class of fishing vessel that deploys a net shaped like a bag to hold the catch — was featured in Steinbeck’s “The Sea of Cortez: A Journal of Travel and Research” and “The Log from the Sea of Cortez.” Dennis Taylor reports. Wayward boat: Steinbeck's 'Western Flyer' sinks again  

Now, your tug weather--
WEST ENTRANCE U.S. WATERS STRAIT OF JUAN DE FUCA- 245 AM PST TUE JAN 15 2013
TODAY
E WIND 10 KT BECOMING NW TO 10 KT. WIND WAVES 1 FT OR LESS. W SWELL 5 FT AT 13 SECONDS. PATCHY FOG.
TONIGHT
NW WIND TO 10 KT. WIND WAVES 1 FT OR LESS. W SWELL 5 FT AT 14 SECONDS. PATCHY FOG.
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