Tuesday, November 12, 2013

11/12 Whale talk, nearshore action, starfish deaths, Vic sewage, coal rules, Colquitz Cr., Sally Jewell

Northern Flicker (BirdNote)
If you like to listen: BirdNote-- Bird Feeders and Whaling Ships
In the opening lines of Moby Dick, the narrator, Ishmael, confesses to "a damp, drizzly November in my soul." One sure way to brighten November's damp and drizzly mood is to welcome birds into your yard with birdfeeders. Black-oil sunflower seed is especially popular. Hang suet in a wire cage to attract a Northern Flicker like this one. Then, just add water, and you're all set.

ALERT: Brad Hanson's presentation on 11/12 at C&P Coffee Company is sold out! Due to limited space, there won't be any tickets sold at the door.  If you didn't get a ticket, you can watch it online - the presentation will be posted later this week at thewhaletrail.org

What Are Killer Whales Saying?
  
Carl Safina writes: "People who are listening to the killer whale calls in my previous posting are asking whether we have any idea yet of the meaning. Answer: not as language, but we do know some things. What we don’t know: We don’t know if they have words or language. We think they have signature calls (names) and recognize each other. We do know they can hear each other over tens of miles (about 30 miles, though some large whales such as fin and blue whales can hear each other over hundreds of miles)..." And then again: What Does the Fox Say? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jofNR_WkoCE

News Release: Strengthen Puget Sound Nearshore Protections, Local Watchdog Group Says

Sound Action and 14 environmental groups ask for— and get— public comment time for Hydraulic Code revisions extended from November 15 to December 13. Action is what it’s going to take to protect nearshore habitats and recover Puget Sound’s health. (Also see SoundActionNW on Facebook and “like” Sound!Action.)

Mystery disease might have hit Puget Sound starfish
An environmental advocate and photographer has made a troubling discovery on the shores of West Seattle that could be linked to a mysterious disease ravaging starfish along the entire West Coast. "Diver Laura" James posted a video documenting the death of more than 100 dead sea stars in the Brace Point area near Fauntleroy after stumbling upon them over the weekend. (http://vimeo.com/79076295) It's not known if they are tied to "sea star wasting disease." The widespread disease is being blamed for an epidemic along the coast from Alaska to Southern California. Josh Kerns reports.

CRD's sewage sweetener for Esquimalt aims to seal a deal
A tentative deal to give the Township of Esquimalt cash and a host of amenities in exchange for an unpopular sewage treatment plant will go before Greater Victoria politicians on Wednesday. The proposal, hammered out by senior staff from Esquimalt and the Capital Regional District, could clear one of the last hurdles for the $783-million sewage treatment project by settling a long-running zoning dispute at McLoughlin Point. The CRD is offering an annual $55,000 “community impact mitigation fee” for at least five years to compensate Esquimalt for the proposed plant, as well as stringent odour control, a promise to barge construction material to the site, a million-dollar bike and path system, public art and an oceanside walkway. Rob Shaw reports.

New EPA rules could throw a wrench into NW coal game  
This past Thursday, it seemed coal was on trial again in Seattle. About 250 people turned out, on a fiercely windy and rainy afternoon, for a meeting held by the U.S. EPA in the Henry M. Jackson Federal Building downtown. It was one of 11 “listening sessions” that the EPA has held around the country to gain public input on new rules for power plants and the carbon dioxide emissions that contribute to climate change. Madeline Ostrander reports.

Bishops: Coal ports must get ‘exhaustive, independent review’
Huge proposed coal export terminals at Longview and Cherry Point, north of Bellingham, must get “exhaustive and independent review” of potential environmental, economic and climate change impacts, Washington’s four Catholic bishops said in a statement adopted Friday. The bishops have aligned themselves squarely with environmental and public health groups, and with Govs. Jay Inslee of Washington and John Kitzhaber of Oregon, in wanting evaluation of all consequences if the Northwest is to start exporting millions of tons of coal to China. Joel Connelly reports.

Colquitz Creek salmon run a fine kettle of fish
Despite all the threats it faces, Colquitz Creek in Saanich is thriving as a home for salmon. Colquitz is an urban stream under tremendous pressure from homes along its bank, storm drains that empty into it and runoff from farming and light industry. It weathered a number of spills in 2010-11, when some fish died but many others survived. On one day last week, volunteers counted 449 coho and two cutthroat trout — more than the entire run last year. Sandra McCulloch reports.

Interior secretary says Obama may bypass Congress on monuments
Interior Secretary Sally Jewell says she will recommend that President Barack Obama act alone if necessary to create new national monuments and sidestep a gridlocked Congress that has failed to address dozens of public lands bills. Jewell said the logjam on Capital Hill has created a conservation backlog, and she warned that the Obama administration would not "hold its breath forever" waiting for lawmakers to act...Congress has not added any acreage to the national park or wilderness systems since 2010. Jewell blamed ramped-up rhetoric in Washington for the impasse. She said the appetite for preserving American historic and cultural sites remains high but some officials seek to avoid the appearance of publicly embracing more government protection. Julie Cart reports. See also: Sizing Up Sally Jewell

Now, your tug weather--
WEST ENTRANCE U.S. WATERS STRAIT OF JUAN DE FUCA- 637 AM PST TUE NOV 12 2013
SMALL CRAFT ADVISORY IN EFFECT UNTIL 4 PM PST THIS AFTERNOON
TODAY
S WIND 15 TO 25 KT. WIND WAVES 2 TO 4 FT. SW SWELL 6 FT AT 10 SECONDS. RAIN TAPERING OFF TO SCATTERED SHOWERS.
TONIGHT
SW WIND 10 TO 20 KT. WIND WAVES 1 TO 3 FT. SW SWELL 6 FT AT 10 SECONDS. CHANCE OF SHOWERS.
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2 comments:

  1. Great to see that news re: Colquitz Creek. I was one of the high school students who worked on its cleanup way back in 1969, when it was choked with garbage and urban debris and not looking very hopeful for salmon.

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    Replies
    1. That certainly speaks to the resiliency of the species -- surviving and returning salmon and long-standing activists like you. Thank you.

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