Tuesday, October 1, 2013

10/1 Toxic waters, Orca Watcher, PCB penalty, Tacoma stormwater, Vancouver oil, BP spill trial

Rescue tug at Neah Bay (WA Dept. of Ecology)
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The Williford family is all smiles today. But they weren't so happy when Jessica...was the first person in the U.S. with a documented case of diarrhetic shellfish poisoning. Climate change could make such illnesses more common. Ashley Ahearn and Katie Campbell report. Toxic Algal Blooms And Warming Waters: The Climate Connection

Check out two new blog posts by Orca Watcher Monika Wieland: September Whale Update and Wolf Hollow Harbor Seal Release

Tacoma will pay a $40,000 penalty for 750 gallons of contaminated oil it tried to recycle, a fraction of the 1.6 million the city says it has kept out of Puget Sound with its oil-collection program in past decades. The Environmental Protection Agency said Monday the city agreed to the settlement, after it unknowingly sent a batch of used oil contaminated with PCBs in May 2012 to be recycled by Emerald Services on the Tideflats. Alexis Krell reports. Tacoma penalized $40,000 for unknowingly sending PCB-contaminated oil from collection program to be recycled

Identifying solutions to the drainage problems highlighted over the weekend when rain squalls flooded intersections and basements could take the city of Tacoma several weeks or months. City officials are zeroing in on two problem spots: the swamped intersection of Pacific Avenue and South Tacoma Way, and Stadium Way, where rainwater forced 100-pound manhole covers off their seats and closed the road for several hours Saturday and Sunday. Kate Martin reports. Rains overwhelm Tacoma storm drains

Representatives of the two companies that want to build a controversial oil terminal at the Port of Vancouver said Monday night they will operate the facility safely and that they approach doing business in a community as neighbors, bringing charitable and other community-support programs in tow. "We don't look at moving into a community as something that's just a way to make money," Kirk Aubry, president and chief operating officer for Savage Companies, told an estimated 100 people who were inside the cafeteria of Hudson's Bay High School to listen to him and other company executives explain their project. More than 20 protesters gathered outside. Savage, a supply-chain management company, and Tesoro Corp., the West Coast's largest refiner, want to build an oil-by-rail terminal that would handle as much as 380,000 barrels of crude per day. Aaron Corvin reports. Tesoro, Savage explain oil-by-rail plans

BP lied to the U.S. government and withheld information about the amount of oil spilling into the Gulf of Mexico after its well blew out in 2010, attorneys told a judge Monday. But lawyers for the London-based oil giant denied those accusations and said there was no way to prepare for such a unique blowout a mile below the sea floor. Second-guessing the company's efforts to cap the well was "Monday morning quarterbacking at its worst," BP attorney Mike Brock said during opening statements of the second phase of a trial over the spill. This part focuses on BP's response to the disaster and is designed to help U.S. District Judge Carl Barbier determine how much oil spewed into the Gulf. The government's estimate is 70 million gallons more than what BP says spilled. Establishing how much oil leaked into the Gulf during BP's struggle to cap the well will help figure out the penalties the oil company must pay. Billions of dollars are at stake. Michael Kunzelman reports. BP accused of lying to govt during Gulf oil spill

Now, your tug weather--
WEST ENTRANCE U.S. WATERS STRAIT OF JUAN DE FUCA- 244 AM PDT TUE OCT 1 2013
SMALL CRAFT ADVISORY IN EFFECT UNTIL 9 AM PDT THIS MORNING
 SMALL CRAFT ADVISORY FOR HAZARDOUS SEAS IN EFFECT FROM 9 AM PDT THIS MORNING THROUGH LATE TONIGHT
TODAY
SW WIND 15 TO 25 KT...BECOMING S 10 TO 15 KT MID MORNING. WIND WAVES 2 TO 4 FT...SUBSIDING TO 1 TO 2 FT MIDDAY. W SWELL 12 FT AT 13 SECONDS. SHOWERS AND SLIGHT CHANCE OF TSTMS.
TONIGHT
S WIND 5 TO 15 KT...BECOMING SW TO 10 KT AFTER MIDNIGHT. WIND WAVES 2 FT OR LESS. W SWELL 10 FT AT 12 SECONDS. SHOWERS.
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