Tuesday, July 2, 2013

7/2 Craig Orr, BC (sea)weed, Skagit water, fish consumption

PHOTO: Laurie MacBride
Laurie MacBride in Eye on Environment writes: 'My grandfather was a dedicated gardener who grew most of the family’s vegetables in his tiny backyard in Victoria. One of his pearls of wisdom, passed on to me by my mother, was that “you have to eat a peck of dirt before you die.”...' Eating is a Dirty Business

Thanks for reading the Salish Sea News and Salish Sea Communications blogs. We had 2,646 visits to the news web site in June (45,486 since launch) and 1,829 visits to the blog web site (33,470 since launch). Salish Sea News is sent out as an email every weekday morning at no cost. You can support this news and commentary service by encouraging others to sign up to receive the morning news. See details at the bottom of this page. Thanks— and good reading.

New blog: “A flock of seagulls squawked excitedly the other day in San Juan Channel off the tip of the Fisherman Bay peninsula, probably around a school of baitfish brought to the surface by feeding salmon or a seal. Maybe it’s just my rose-colored recollection of the past but it seems to me that there used to be more times when I’d see those flocks of sea birds feeding...”  Goodness Gracious, Great Balls of Herring  

Craig Orr is shifting tactics after years of battling government over water issues in British Columbia. But politicians shouldn’t relax just yet because Dr. Orr, executive director of Watershed Watch Salmon Society, knows that the old method of driving change through highlighting crises still works. “Unfortunately there’s a lot of research out there that shows we are not very good at proactive change. … You really need to create crisis to move people, to motivate them to change. Personal crisis, financial crisis, these kinds of things,” he says. Mark Hume reports. B.C. water activist shifting tactics in battle with government

The brown seaweed Saccharina latissima is abundant in B.C. waters. Ethanol produced from large-scale seaweed farms could supply B.C.’s current demand for ethanol and help the province meet its greenhouse gas emission targets, according to a new analysis from the University of Victoria. The climate benefits of converting Saccharina latissima brown seaweed to ethanol are considerably greater than the advantages conferred by corn-based ethanol, said graduate student Aaron Philippsen. Seaweed production requires no arable land, uses no fresh water and, most importantly, the ethanol produced has a considerably lower carbon footprint than corn-based ethanol, which makes up five per cent of the renewable content in our gasoline and four per cent of our diesel fuel. Randy Shore reports. Seaweed fuel could replace corn ethanol in B.C.’s fuel program, according to UVic analysis  

The state Department of Ecology has purchased water rights in a local river basin, allowing more people to build homes in an area west of Mount Vernon. The agency announced Monday that it bought three water rights from the Big Lake Water Association for $138,598 to allow future development in the Nookachamps basin, which stretches from the Skagit River in the north, along Highway 9 through Big Lake and south to Lake McMurray.... But all the effort to secure water for future development could be pointless. The Swinomish Indian Tribal Community sued Ecology in 2008 to invalidate the rule amendment... The case is being considered by the state Supreme Court. A ruling could be issued in the coming months. Kate Martin reports. Ecology buys water rights for future development  

Washington state House Democrats removed funds for a fish-consumption study from the final budget. That went against the wishes of one of the state's biggest business interests, Boeing. The state Department of Ecology currently assumes that people in Washington eat about one meal of fish a month. But the state acknowledges the standard is out of date; many people eat a lot more fish than that. Tribes and environmental groups have been urging the state to update its standard and require stricter regulation of water pollution. But that has been met with resistance from businesses, including Boeing. The state Senate wanted to include money for a fish-consumption study in the budget. Democratic Rep. Ross Hunter says he and other House leaders removed the language because the federal EPA recently told Washington state to stop delaying. Ashley Gross reports. House Dems remove fish-consumption study from budget

Now, your tug weather--
WEST ENTRANCE U.S. WATERS STRAIT OF JUAN DE FUCA- 255 AM PDT TUE JUL 2 2013
SMALL CRAFT ADVISORY IN EFFECT THROUGH LATE TONIGHT
TODAY
W WIND 10 TO 15 KT...RISING TO 15 TO 25 KT IN THE AFTERNOON. WIND WAVES 1 OR 2 FT...BUILDING TO 2 TO 4 FT IN THE
 AFTERNOON. SW SWELL 3 FT AT 14 SECONDS. PATCHY FOG THIS MORNING.
TONIGHT
W WIND 15 TO 25 KT...EASING TO 10 TO 20 KT AFTER MIDNIGHT. WIND WAVES 1 TO 4 FT. SW SWELL 4 FT AT 14 SECONDS. PATCHY
 FOG AFTER MIDNIGHT.
--
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