Monday, January 26, 2015

1/26 Sea stars, sonar, pol talk, Kalakala,, BC Ferries, Vic sewer, poop dump, dead whale, bird flu, salmon pole, CP dock

(PHOTO: Seattle Aquarium)
Sea Stars Make A Comeback - For Now
The worst of the sea star wasting disease epidemic that decimated sea star populations along the West Coast during the past 19 months appears to be over at Haystack Rock — at least for now. Most of what’s left are the juvenile sea stars that somehow survived the pathogenic onslaught that killed off more than 90 percent of their fellows during the 2014 beach season, according to Haystack Rock Awareness Coordinator Samantha Ferber, who recorded the death toll at three sites. Erick Bengel reports. (Daily Astorian)

Navy wants to deploy more sonar-emitting buoys
The U.S. Navy is seeking permits to expand sonar and other training exercises off the Pacific Coast, a proposal raising concerns from animal advocates who say more sonar-emitting buoys would harm whales and other sea creatures. Phuong Le reports. (Associated Press)

A Republican And A Democrat Walk Into A Bar - To Talk Climate Change
This legislative session is looking like the make-or-break for any action on climate change from the Washington state legislature. As Governor Jay Inslee and the Democrats continue to push for a cap and trade system, Republicans continue to voice strong opposition. Is there a middle ground? You be the judge of that. Listen in as two leading senators - one Republican, one Democrat - sit down for a beer with EarthFix’s Ashley Ahearn and talk about climate change — with some detours in the conversation to discuss baby goats and Santa Claus, too. Ashley Ahearn reports. (EarthFix)

The Kalakala rides to its deconstruction in Tacoma, but wait just a second
In the dark, in the rain, the ferry Kalakala made its final voyage Thursday morning. It came to die. It did not go easily. After more than a decade spent rusting on Tacoma’s Hylebos Waterway, and lit Thursday by a single spotlight, the ferry was released from its moorings at 3:45 a.m. A pair of tugs then guided it over 2.5 miles and just over 90 minutes into Commencement Bay and then to a graving dock on the Blair Waterway. It will be cut apart for scrap over the next week. C.R. Roberts reports. (News Tribune of Tacoma)

Everybody wants to fix BC Ferries, but nobody knows how
With costs rising and ridership falling, the province, the ferry commissioner and the corporation are at odds over the best course forward for essential ferry service on the westcoast.  Justine Hunter reports. (Globe and Mail)

Equipment failure causes unscreened sewage discharge at Clover Point
A Friday afternoon sewer discharge at Clover Point has prompted Capital Regional District officials to have public-health advisory signs erected in the area. About 3,000 cubic metres of unscreened sewage was discharged through the Clover Point outfall about 3:45 p.m. due to a failure of mechanical equipment. The failure was corrected later in the day. Jeff Bell reports. (Times Colonist) See also: Victoria's Secret: Dumping Raw Sewage Like It's 1915   The icky, smelly, rotten no-good political mess that could cost taxpayers a billion. (Yes, a billion!)  Sarah Berman reports. (The Tyee)

Pleasure boats may be allowed to dump sewage closer to Vancouver-area beaches http://www.vancouversun.com/news/Pleasure+boats+allowed+dump+sewage+closer+shore/10755885/story.html
Vancouver Coastal Health wants to see local beaches exempt from a proposal by Transport Canada that suggests small pleasure boats be allowed to dump their sewage closer to shore. Medical health officer Dr. Mark Lysyshyn said such a move, which is still in the public consultation phase, could potentially increase the occurrence of E. coli in local waters and lead to more frequent closures of the area’s beaches. Under Transport Canada’s plan, small boats carrying fewer than 15 people would be allowed to discharge sewage just one nautical mile from shore, closer than the three nautical miles that are required today. Kelly Sinoski reports. (Vancouver Sun)

Dead whale found at Seattle dock struck by ship propeller
A 32-foot gray whale that turned up dead under the Washington state ferry terminal in downtown Seattle died earlier this week because it was struck by the propeller of a large vessel, according to the initial results of a necropsy completed Saturday. (Seattle Times)

Third strain of bird flu confirmed in wild duck in Whatcom County http://www.bellinghamherald.com/2015/01/23/4094980_third-strain-of-bird-flu-confirmed.html
A third strain of bird flu has been found in a wild duck in Whatcom County, officials said Friday, Jan. 23. Tests confirmed the H5N1 strain in a green-winged teal killed by a hunter near Sumas, said Hector Castro, a spokesman for the state Department of Agriculture. Like the other two strains traced to wild ducks in Whatcom County in December, this one also is highly pathogenic. That means the strain is deadly to domestic chickens and turkeys. Kie Relyea reports. (Bellingham Herald)

Salmon pole unveiled at Wa He Lut Indian School in honor of Billy Frank Jr.
There were tribal songs, dances and prayers. And there were raindrops, something Wa He Lut Principal Harvey Whitford urged everyone to be thankful for during the unveiling of a 10-foot high salmon pole carved in honor of late Nisqually leader and activist Billy Frank Jr…. The pole was carved by Jewell James of the Lummi Reservation near Bellingham, and a small group known as the House of Tears Carvers. Lisa Pemberton reports. (Olympian)

Thousands of environmentalists’ comments on BP Cherry Point dock marked as ‘malicious spam’
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers lost about 28,000 public comments about a controversial oil-shipping dock at a Whatcom County refinery after they were marked as “malicious spam” by an email security system. Last July, the Corps solicited comment on its draft environmental impact statement exploring the possible impacts of operating the north wing of a Y-shaped oil transfer dock at the BP Cherry Point refinery. The long-awaited draft came out after a more than eight-year process that included delays over studies of vessel traffic to the dock. In response to the draft, environmental advocacy group Friends of the Earth created a form letter and asked people on its mailing list to sign and send it to the Corps through a communication program called Salsa. Samantha Wohlfeil reports. (Bellingham Herald)

Now, your tug weather--
WEST ENTRANCE U.S. WATERS STRAIT OF JUAN DE FUCA- 300 AM PST MON JAN 26 2015
TODAY
S WIND 5 TO 15 KT. WIND WAVES 2 FT OR LESS. W SWELL 8 FT AT 13 SECONDS.
TONIGHT
S WIND 5 TO 15 KT. WIND WAVES 2 FT OR LESS. W SWELL 6 FT AT 13 SECONDS. A CHANCE OF RAIN.

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