Monday, January 20, 2014

1/20 Mud, MLK, SPU, BC pipe, Cherry Pt coal, Sliver Cr, BC enviro ed, GMO salmon, state parks, derelict ships

American avocet and chick (PHOTO: Ingrid Taylar)
Why Mud Matters: Chatting with Geomorphologist Jeremy Lowe
Jeremy Lowe is serious about mud. We caught up with the senior scientist from San Francisco-based environmental planning firm ESA to discuss why lowly mud and sediment are critical pieces of Bay habitat — and why we should worry about a world without them . Beth Slatkin reports.

New blog: MLK Day and the Way to Win
"We’re celebrating Martin Luther King, Jr. Day again this year and I’m happy that Scott Miller, who runs the environmental communications consultant group Resource Media, addressed the issue of real diversity in the environmental movement in a thoughtful blog last week, Changing with the times..."

SPU's plan to get Seattle out of deep sh*t
Last year, Seattle spilled more than 154 million gallons of stormwater and untreated sewage into our lakes and streams. SPU plans to fix that. Martha Baskin reports.

Northern Gateway pipeline report draws lawsuit
A coalition of environment groups has filed a lawsuit in Federal Court alleging serious flaws with the Joint Review Panel's final report that recommended the pipeline be approved because “Canadians will be better off with this project than without it.” The group is seeking a court order to prevent the federal cabinet from acting on the panel's report to approve the proposed pipeline. Ecojustice lawyers representing ForestEthics Advocacy, the Living Oceans Society and the Raincoast Conservation Foundation allege the Joint Review Panel's 419-page report contains legal errors and that its approval is based on insufficient evidence. See also: Neil Young's anti-oilsands tour draws fierce reaction in Calgary


Cherry Point coal port study process remains on hold
Almost six months after regulatory agencies made their decision on the scope of environmental study for a proposed Whatcom County coal export terminal at Cherry Point, the study process itself has yet to begin. Tyler Schroeder, Whatcom County planning manager, said the work on the first draft of the wide-ranging environmental impact statement for the Gateway Pacific Terminal won't start until the companies proposing the coal project sign off on a contract they are now reviewing. John Stark reports.

Coal spill feared a risk to aquatic life in Burnaby's Silver Creek
John Preissl can hardly believe his eyes. The Burnaby resident and amateur nature photographer walks the shoreline of Burnaby Lake pretty much every day and is disturbed to see that sediments and coal have created a small island at the mouth of Silver Creek where endangered western painted turtles are hibernating. A set of logs utilized by the turtles outside of winter sits beached on the new island. “This is brand new, never been here,” the 51-year-old painter and finish carpenter remarks. “It’s sad. It shocks me. The turtles are right underneath, wintering in the mud.” A Canadian Pacific train operated by a Canadian National crew on CN tracks derailed a week ago Saturday just north of Burnaby Lake, spilling metallurgical coal into rain-swollen Silver Creek. Larry Pynn reports.

New B.C. curriculum eroding environmental education, critics fear
Critics fear that environmental education could be losing its place as a prime topic of study in B.C. schools. And that’s especially bad at a time when issues like sewage, Alberta oilsands and pipelines are front-and-centre, said elementary-school teacher Lenny Ross. Ross, who teaches at Strawberry Vale Elementary School and helps organize environmental-education programs throughout the Greater Victoria school district, is part of a grassroots effort to ensure the importance of the environment is retained during the ongoing review of the curriculum. Jeff Bell reports.

House panel hears debate on modified salmon
Last year’s ballot battle over genetically modified food got a rerun in a legislative committee Friday as some fishing groups called for a ban on re-engineered salmon and others said the idea was unnecessary fear-mongering. The House Agriculture Committee considered but did not vote on HB 214, which would also require any genetically modified salmon sold in Washington stores to be labeled. Rep. Cary Condotta, R-East Wenatchee, the bill’s sponsor, said it was narrower than Initiative 522, which would have required many genetically modified foods to be labeled if it passed last year. It failed but got about 49 percent of the vote. Jim Camden reports.

Ads in state parks explored
Washington officials are looking to end the ban on commercial advertising in state parks in hopes of generating much-needed dollars for the cash-strapped agency. But visitors won’t be subjected to gaudy displays of corporate logos anytime soon, insist lawmakers and leaders of state parks. House and Senate bills introduced this week aim to generate revenue from advertising on the agency website and expanded private investment in Washington’s 117 parks, plus a like number of undeveloped properties. Jerry Cornfield reports.

Rep. Hansen proposes new bill to safeguard waterways and protect marine jobs by cleaning up derelict vessels
Rep. Drew Hansen of Bainbridge Island is sponsoring a new bill to further fight the problem of derelict and abandoned boats in the waters of Washington state... Hansen worked over the summer with Rep. Norma Smith, a Whidbey Island Republican, on the bipartisan proposal to speed up the removal of derelict vessels. The bill also aims to increase accountability for owners of high-risk boats and encourage boat owners to dispose of vessels safely. n the 2013 legislative session, Hansen successfully helped to author and push a bill to protect jobs in the marine industries by strengthening the state’s derelict vessel program. That measure, House Bill 1245, was approved last year with overwhelming bipartisan support. Hansen’s follow-up proposal, House Bill 2457, would go further to address the problem. It focuses on the bigger, older vessels that are most likely to decay and become derelict.

Now, your tug weather--
WEST ENTRANCE U.S. WATERS STRAIT OF JUAN DE FUCA- 300 AM PST MON JAN 20 2014
SMALL CRAFT ADVISORY IN EFFECT THROUGH LATE TONIGHT
TODAY
SE WIND 15 TO 25 KT. WIND WAVES 2 TO 4 FT. W SWELL 6 FT AT 17 SECONDS.
TONIGHT
SE WIND 15 TO 25 KT. WIND WAVES 2 TO 4 FT. W SWELL 9 FT AT 18 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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