Friday, May 9, 2014

5/9 Minke, Hoyt, Frank Jr. funeral, fuel gateway, derelict vessels, coal mining, ESA amphibians, toxic algae

Newborn minke (Brooke McKinley, Island Adventures Whale Watching)
Unprecedented sighting of newborn minke whale
A once-in-a-lifetime sighting of a newborn minke whale, accompanied by its mother, was reported last weekend near San Juan Island. Chris Dunagan reports. (Watching Our Water Ways/Kitsap Sun)

New blog: Russian Killer Whales: Something More To Worry About
Orca expert and author Erich Hoyt who is on The Whale Trail’s Orca Tour 2014 gave me something more to worry about when he spoke Wednesday about killer whales of the North Pacific at the Port Townsend Marine Science Center’s annual meeting. Now I’m worried about Russian killer whales and the growing capture industry for zoos and aquariums in China, Japan and Russia....

Billy Frank Jr. funeral scheduled for Sunday
A public funeral service for Nisqually tribal elder Billy Frank Jr. will be at 10 a.m. Sunday in the Squaxin Island Tribe’s event center at the Little Creek Casino Resort, 91 W. state Route 108, Shelton. Frank, 83, died at his Olympia area home Monday. Burial will follow at the Chief Leschi Cemetery, 2249 Reservation Road, which is just north of the ball fields on the Nisqually Indian Reservation. A dinner will follow back at the Squaxin tribal event center. John Dodge reports. (Olympian)

Pacific Northwest's Salish Sea Eyed as Fossil Fuel Gateway
Trains loaded with crude oil from North Dakota's Bakken shale formation rumble past the outfield bleachers of the Seattle Mariners' baseball stadium several times a week. From there, the trains head north, their cargo destined for multiple refineries in Washington State. The traffic is new: Just three years ago, no oil trains were coming to Washington. Bakken crude is filling a void created by dwindling shipments from aging oil fields on Alaska's North Slope, and the petroleum industry wants to bring in more. But the push to build more rail and shipping capacity in the Pacific Northwest is spurring debate over how that oil flow will affect the region—and where it should ultimately go. John Roach reports. (National Geographic)

Vancouver finds flaws in Kinder Morgan pipeline application process
The City of Vancouver wants the National Energy Board to put on hold Kinder Morgan’s application for a new Trans Mountain pipeline, saying the current process is deeply flawed. In a wide-ranging complaint about the entire application process, the city, whose Vision Vancouver council ardently opposes the fossil fuel industry and has brought in a range of climate change-related policies, said it has severe reservations about the completeness of the pipeline application. It has also extended that criticism to the NEB itself, saying the three-member panel is stacked with pro-energy appointees. Jeff Lee reports. (Vancouver Sun)

Sunken boat and hazardous waste: Owner heads to court
Rory Westmoreland said little in a courtroom in King County Thursday afternoon, but prosecutors say his trail of destruction across Puget Sound says enough to put him in prison. Westmoreland denied wrongdoing in connection to the sinking of a retired crab boat and storage of dozens of drums filled with waste on his property in Renton. The state says flammable and corrosive waste was stored in a number of the 41 drums on the property. Westmoreland faces a felony and misdemeanor charges for that, which is just part of years of pollution according to neighbors. Jon Humbert reports. (KOMO) See also: Victoria pushes to clear out derelict boats in Gorge  Bill Cleverly reports. (Times Colonist)

Anderson Lake closed because of high levels of toxin created by blue-green algae http://peninsuladailynews.com/article/20140509/NEWS/305099972/anderson-lake-closed-because-of-high-levels-of-toxin-created-by-blue
Anderson Lake was closed Thursday to fishing and all other water recreation because of high levels of toxin created by blue-green algae... The park remains open to recreation; only the lake is closed. The most recent tests of water samples found an unsafe level of anatoxin-a, a nerve poison that can kill within four minutes of ingestion. (Peninsula Daily News)

Coal mining, blasting returns to King County
The Pacific Coal Company has applied for permits to resume mining operations for the first time since 1999 at its John Henry Mine in Black Diamond.... Documents filed with the Federal Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement show the comment period on a new Environmental Assessment of the project ends May 13. Documents also show the coal would be sold to concrete manufacturing companies in the Seattle area to be burned to generate power for the cement making process. The company estimates the mining would produce some 700,000 tons of coal over a period of a few years. Coal mining and burning has all but ceased in Washington state and this would mark the first operation to resume in the last 15 years. Gary Chittim reports. (KING)

Group Seeks Protection For Rare Salamanders, Frog
A conservation group is threatening to sue the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to force action on petitions to give Endangered Species Act protection to four kinds of salamanders and a frog found in the Northwest. The Center for Biological Diversity filed a notice Wednesday of intent to sue, a prerequisite for actually suing the federal agency. The notice says the service is more than a year late in deciding on petitions to protect the Cascades frog, the Oregon slender salamander and three species of torrent salamander. More than 200 scientists also called for a reviewing the amphibians’ status. (Associated Press)

Now, your weekend tug weather--
WEST ENTRANCE U.S. WATERS STRAIT OF JUAN DE FUCA- 300 AM PDT FRI MAY 9 2014
SMALL CRAFT ADVISORY IN EFFECT UNTIL 6 AM PDT EARLY THIS MORNING
TODAY
W WIND 15 TO 25 KT EARLY...BECOMING SW 5 TO 15 KT. WIND WAVES 2 TO 4 FT...SUBSIDING TO 2 FT OR LESS. W SWELL 6 FT AT 9
 SECONDS. SHOWERS. CHANCE OF THUNDERSTORMS IN THE AFTERNOON.
TONIGHT
SW WIND 10 KT. WIND WAVES 1 FT. W SWELL 6 FT AT 9 SECONDS. SHOWERS LIKELY AND A CHANCE OF THUNDERSTORMS...THEN A
 CHANCE OF SHOWERS AFTER MIDNIGHT.
SAT
SW WIND TO 10 KT...BECOMING W 10 TO 20 KT IN THE AFTERNOON. WIND WAVES 1 FT OR LESS...BUILDING TO 1 TO 3 FT. W SWELL 6 FT AT 10 SECONDS.
SAT NIGHT
W WIND 10 TO 20 KT. WIND WAVES 1 TO 3 FT. W SWELL 5 FT AT 9 SECONDS.
SUN
W WIND TO 10 KT. WIND WAVES 1 FT OR LESS. W SWELL 4 FT AT 9 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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