|(BirdNote: Francy Blumhagen)|
“Doves symbolize peace on earth, goodwill to all. BirdNote celebrates the season with a version of Dona Nobis Pacem, arranged and played by Nancy Rumbel.”
If you like to watch: Whale Waiters
Orca Watcher Monika Wieland shares some wonderful photos of what it's like to wait for the whales at Lime Kiln State Park-- and the reward of watching them when they show up.
Northern Gateway has Ottawa scrambling to avoid lawsuits
Within three hours of the Joint Review Panel’s announcement giving conditional approval for the proposed Northern Gateway pipeline, the Lake Babine First Nation threatened the lawsuit it has been preparing for months. The band has already retained one of the top aboriginal law experts in Canada, setting the stage for a court fight the federal government is working feverishly behind the scenes to stave off. Justine Hunter reports.
Geoduck harvesters see money slipping through their fingers
...Since Dec. 3, when seafood inspectors in China suspended imports of West Coast geoduck and other bivalve shellfish such as oysters after reporting high levels of algae toxin or arsenic, harvesters along tribal, state and private shorelines have all been hit. Altogether, the state produces more than 6 million pounds of geoduck clams annually, and last year almost 90 percent was sold to China. But now, tribal harvesting companies have laid off divers. Geoduck farms have reduced hours for many workers, and wild-geoduck divers all around Puget Sound are out of work. Meanwhile, the state is missing out on well over $1 million in revenue from the wild harvest. Washington auctions off rights to harvest geoduck on state aquatic lands; this year those rights were worth about $12 a pound. Coral Garrick reports. See also: 4 Weeks In, Locals Feel Pain Of China’s Shellfish Ban
Washington's 2013 Climate Report Card
Kicking the state’s carbon habit may seem as likely as visiting a distant galaxy for the weekend if your vantage point is I-5, coal trains rolling through town, or ships transiting coastal waters laden with tar sands oil. But duck into a commercial building powered by renewables or wind farms like Wild Horse and Kittatas in Eastern Washington, and you’ll realize a clean energy future is already on its way. In the aftermath of another UN Climate Summit and Typhoon Haiyan’s climate savagery, it seemed time to assess the state’s own carbon output in three key areas: energy, transportation and fossil fuel exports. Martha Baskin grades us.
Oil, coal trains squeeze Amtrak's Empire Builder route to Northwest
Freight congestion has caused massive delays and even cancellations of a popular Amtrak train in recent months, a situation that could worsen as one of the nation's largest rail companies plans to increase shipments of fossil fuels on much of the route. The Empire Builder, which runs from Chicago to Seattle and Portland, Ore., carries more passengers than any of Amtrak's long-distance trains, 543,000 in 2012. But it also recorded the worst on-time performance in Amtrak's nationwide network in November, at 44.5 percent. Any number below 80 percent is considered substandard under a law Congress passed in 2008. Curtis Tate reports.
B.C. fish-farm foe takes fight against industry to Scotland
British Columbia's highest court may have placed a muzzle on anti-salmon-farming activist Don Staniford, but that hasn't stopped the man described by one judge as a "zealot" from continuing his personal battle against the industry. After losing a defamation case this past summer against one of the province's biggest salmon-farming companies, Mainstream Canada, Staniford moved shop to Scotland. There, he leads an organization known as Protect Wild Scotland, co-ordinating actions against Norwegian-owned, salmon-farming companies in the United Kingdom and Ireland, and even back in B.C.
Hawaii's starfish protected from fatal wasting disease
...Wasting disease has not affected Hawaii's starfish. Because a bacterium or virus is the suspected cause of the starfish illness, being more than 2,000 miles away from the sick individuals seems to be, so far, an effective quarantine. In addition to being isolated by distance, Hawaii's mountaintop islands and steep ocean drop-offs offer starfish few shallow marine environments, the preferred habitat of many species. Of the 1,900 or so sea star species in the world, Hawaii hosts only 20 in shallow water and 68 in deep water. Susan Scott reports.
Now, your tug weather--
WEST ENTRANCE U.S. WATERS STRAIT OF JUAN DE FUCA- 300 AM PST TUE DEC 24 2013
VARIABLE WIND TO 10 KT THIS MORNING...BECOMING LIGHT. WIND WAVES 1 FT OR LESS. W SWELL 6 FT AT 11 SECONDS.
LIGHT WIND. WIND WAVES LESS THAN 1 FT. W SWELL 5 FT AT 10 SECONDS.
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