Friday, May 24, 2013

5/24 Skagit bridge, Ecology 'eyes,' Tzeporah Berman, Sally Jewell, Moby Doll, Haida iron sulfate dump

PHOTO: Frank Varga, Skagit Valley Herald
In case you missed this: No one is known to have died, but vehicles plunged into the water and three people were taken to the hospital after the Skagit River Bridge on Interstate 5 collapsed Thursday evening. The state Department of Transportation said its engineers are looking into an oversized, overheight vehicle striking a critical portion of the bridge span, spokesman Travis Phelps said. A large flatbed truck passed under the bridge, hitting several of the steel trusses on its way, Trooper Mark Francis of the State Patrol said. The truck came to a stop about 100 yards away from the structure on its south side, he said. Beverly Crichfield, Kate Martin, Lynsi Burton and Gina Cole report. Bridge collapse disaster, but no tragedy

Alas, Skagit Valley traffic using alternate routes to cross the river will feel like Tulip Time on steroids. Skagit County Sherriff Chief Will Reichert urged patience from Skagit County citizens unused to having I-5 traffic re-routed through small country roads. "We have some very small county roads that will be packed with traffic they're not used to seeing," Reichert said. No immediate fix for I-5 traffic woes  And former state Secretary of Transportation Paula Hammond says, "I know the department is ready to respond.... The first order of business is to establish a detour for the over 70,000 vehicles that use I-5 in this area daily. This will require close coordination with the city and county on appropriate local roads that can accommodate a long-term diversion of freeway traffic..." How WSDOT will manage the I-5 collapse  

And more: Depending on its cause, Thursday night’s Skagit River bridge collapse might figure into discussions in Olympia about whether to raise gas taxes and fees to pay for transportation work. State transportation officials were unsure late Thursday why the bridge collapsed after it was struck by a truck carrying an oversize load. Lawmakers were unable to say what, if anything, the Legislature should do. Jordan Schrader reports. Lawmakers lack answers on bridge  

If you like to watch: The Washington Department of Ecology's Marine Monitoring Unit distributes a monthly report combining high resolution aerial photographs with satellite and ground-truthed monitoring data for Puget Sound surface conditions. Eyes Over Puget Sound: surface conditions report from May 20th, 2013

Tzeporah Berman, the eco-activist who gained notoriety a generation ago as a “whacked-out nature worshipper” for blockading logging roads during British Columbia’s divisive War in the Woods, was honoured Thursday at the University of B.C. with a doctorate. Berman’s evolution, from tree hugger to joining forest industry icons H.R. MacMillan and Peter Bentley, who have also received honorary doctorates from the university, marks the maturation not only of the B.C. environmental movement but of the ideals the university recognizes.... Berman was arrested and jailed in the summer of 1993 for organizing logging road blockades at Clayoquot Sound, at the time the largest act of civil disobedience in Canadian history. At that time, she was referred to on national TV as a “whacked-out nature worshipper.” A few years later, former B.C. premier Glen Clark called her an enemy of the state when she was leading the fight to restrict clearcut logging in the Great Bear Rainforest. Gordon Hamilton reports. UBC bestows doctorate on 'whacked-out nature worshipper' Tzeporah Berman

Interior Secretary Sally Jewel made her first public stop in the Northwest in Portland Thursday, six weeks into the job. The Seattleite and former REI chief executive‘s official business in Portland was to announce roughly $4 million in grants to give young people summer jobs in conservation and trail work. During her visit, she pitched in digging up invasive grasses on the edge of a wildlife refuge. Amelia Templeton reports. Jewell Makes First NW Return As Interior Secretary

A conference this weekend on Saturna Island will highlight changes in the attitude toward and treatment of orcas. The Moby Doll Symposium, which begins today and continues through Sunday in East Point Regional Park, will bring nine researchers to the island. The symposium is named after an orca, dubbed Moby Doll, that was captured in 1964 off the coast of Saturna and died in captivity three months later at the Vancouver Aquarium. The whale was the world’s first orca to be displayed in a public aquarium. Orcas the topic of Saturna conference

The Haida Salmon Restoration Corp., the group responsible for releasing 100 tonnes of iron sulphate in the international waters off Haida Gwaii, says it has also dumped its lead scientist Russ George. In a statement Thursday, the company’s board of directors announced George was removed as a director on the board and an officer of the corporation.... The group caused an international firestorm and came under intense scrutiny last October following the dump of 100 tonnes of iron sulphate and 20 tonnes of iron oxide some 350 kilometres off the Haida Gwaii archipelago in what would become known as the world’s largest — and unsanctioned — iron fertilization project. Zoe McKnight reports. Haida Salmon Restoration Corp. drops lead scientist ahead of second experiment

Now, your weekend tug weather--
WEST ENTRANCE U.S. WATERS STRAIT OF JUAN DE FUCA- 300 AM PDT FRI MAY 24 2013
TODAY
LIGHT WIND...BECOMING W TO 10 KT IN THE AFTERNOON. WIND WAVES 1 FT OR LESS. W SWELL 5 FT AT 14 SECONDS. SCATTERED SHOWERS.
TONIGHT
NW WIND 10 TO 20 KT...BECOMING W TO 10 KT AFTER MIDNIGHT. WIND WAVES 1 TO 3 FT. W SWELL 4 FT AT 13 SECONDS. A CHANCE OF
 SHOWERS.
SAT
LIGHT WIND...BECOMING NW 10 KT IN THE AFTERNOON. WIND WAVES 1 FT OR LESS. W SWELL 4 FT AT 12 SECONDS. A CHANCE OF SHOWERS.
SAT NIGHT
NW WIND 5 TO 15 KT...BECOMING W TO 10 KT AFTER MIDNIGHT. WIND WAVES 2 FT OR LESS. W SWELL 3 FT AT 12 SECONDS.
SUN
W WIND TO 10 KT...BECOMING NW 10 TO 15 KT IN THE AFTERNOON. WIND WAVES 2 FT OR LESS. NW SWELL 3 FT AT 12 SECONDS.

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"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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