Wednesday, December 2, 2015

12/2 China smog, climate talks, coal poll, Christof Mauch, Mt Polley, Vic sewer, Navy pier, sex & climate

Beijing smog (Business Week)
China smog: 'Sky dark from air pollution'
Schools and factories have been shut as large sections of northeast China are covered by hazardous smog. 12/1/15 (BBC)

Paris Climate Talks Face A Familiar Hurdle — American Politics
President Obama struck an optimistic tone Tuesday on the second day of the Paris climate talks. But he also touched on the domestic political difficulty in a country still heavily reliant on coal — and when it comes to dealing with Republicans on the issue. Domenico Montanaro reports. (NPR) See also: Republicans in Washington, D.C., seek to undermine Obama’s climate initiatives in Paris  Republicans in Congress moved Tuesday to block and undermine President Obama’s moves to curb carbon emissions from power plants, just as Obama was pledging in Paris to make the United States a global leader in efforts to curb human-caused climate change. Joel Connelly reports. (SeattlePI.Com)

Recent poll: Majority of Washington voters oppose coal-by-rail
Polling results released Oct. 9 from a September telephone survey of 1,200 Washington citizens found that “a strong and growing majority of voters in Washington oppose proposals to ship coal through Washington along rail lines for the purposes of export to Asia.” The survey was conducted by Fairbank, Maslin, Maullin, Metz and Associates (FM3), of Los Angeles/Oakland, to assess Washington voters’ opinions on the shipping and exporting of coal through the state. (Hood River News)

Viewing Seattle through environmental historian’s lens
Seattle has a “pioneering spirit,” says Christof Mauch, one of the world’s distinguished scholars of environmental history. He will speak at a free public lecture on Wednesday, Dec. 2, at the University of Washington. Lynda Mapes reports. (Seattle Times)

Mayor calls Mount Polley permit early Christmas present for Cariboo miners
The British Columbia government has approved a permit allowing water discharge from a mine that was the centre of an environmental disaster, and the decision has drawn cheers from the area's mayor. Williams Lake mayor Walt Cobb said the permit approved Monday for central B.C.'s Mount Polley mine means more than 200 people currently working at the mine site can keep working, and up to 170 people could be called back to the site. Dirk Meissner reports. (Canadian Press)

Explainer: capital sewage treatment; secondary vs. tertiary and more
Why is the Capital Regional District building a sewage treatment plant? Greater Victoria only screens its sewage before dumping it into Juan de Fuca Strait. In 2006, the provincial government mandated sewage treatment. In 2012, the federal government passed a law requiring all high-risk Canadian cities — including Victoria — to provide secondary sewage treatment by 2020. The plan isn’t without critics: Many people argue that ocean currents naturally dilute the waste and that treatment isn’t necessary. Cam Purdy explains. (Times Colonist)

Navy issues draft environmental assessment of Ediz Hook pier proposal; public meeting slated for Jan. 12
The Navy has issued a draft environmental assessment for a proposed pier on Ediz Hook to moor vessels that escort submarines from Hood Canal to the Pacific Ocean. The assessment, a 224-page document, is available online. A printed copy can be reviewed at the Port Angeles Library, 2210 S. Peabody St. The Navy will host a public meeting on the pier proposal from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Jan. 12 in the Elks Naval Lodge, 131 E. First St., where officials will present information, answer questions and accept written comments. James Casey reports. (Peninsula Daily News)

Pete McMartin: Is your sex life the answer to climate change?
Are eco-friendly sex toys the answer to climate change? Short answer: no. I had not, until recently, ever felt the need to consider the effect of sex toys on climate change. Others, apparently, have. There exists an established industry of environmentally-friendly sex products guaranteed to please not only you but Mother Earth. Pete McMartin investigates. (Vancouver Sun)

Now, your tug weather--
WEST ENTRANCE U.S. WATERS STRAIT OF JUAN DE FUCA-  231 AM PST WED DEC 2 2015  

TODAY
 SE WIND 5 TO 15 KT...BECOMING 10 TO 20 KT IN THE AFTERNOON.  WIND WAVES 1 TO 3 FT. SW SWELL 9 FT AT 10 SECONDS...BECOMING W 9 FT  AT 18 SECONDS IN THE AFTERNOON. A CHANCE OF RAIN IN THE AFTERNOON.

TONIGHT
 E WIND 15 TO 25 KT. WIND WAVES 2 TO 4 FT. W SWELL 10  FT AT 16 SECONDS. RAIN.
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