|Bigleaf maple (Photo: Oregon State University)|
The common and scientific names describe the very large leaves, particularly showy in autumn. This maple is called the "paddle tree" in many First Nations languages because the wood was used to make paddles. The bigleaf maple is the only western maple with commercial importance; it is used for veneer, furniture, handles, woodenwares and novelties. The sap can be cooked to make passable maple syrup but it takes several times more sap than eastern sugar-maple sap. (Plants of the Pacific Northwest Coast, Audubon Guide to Western Forests)
Whatcom County extends ban on unrefined fossil fuel shipping
The Whatcom County Council has extended its ban on new permit applications for projects that ship crude oil and other unrefined fossil fuels out of Cherry Point. The Bellingham Herald that the six-month extension was approved Tuesday and prevents shipments or exports of fuels that aren't processed in that industrial area. In August the council approved a 60-day moratorium of shipping out of Cherry Point. Supporters applauded the move, saying it will protect the public from dangerous fuel shipments. Others say potential changes to the industrial zone could hurt jobs and economic development. (Associated Press)
State Carbon Tax Could Become First in Nation if Voters Approve
The state of Washington could become the first state in the nation to enact a carbon tax on big polluters if grassroots activists can overcome opposition from an unlikely coalition: the business community, low-income and people of color communities, the state Democratic party and environmental groups. Supporters of the carbon tax, Initiative 732, are pulling out all the stops to win voters before November. Meanwhile a new report published this week in Nature, says that with today's level of fossil fuel emissions, the planet is “locked” into eventually hitting its highest temperature mark in 2 million years. Martha Baskin reports. (Green Acres Radio)
Lummi fishermen will deliver fresh salmon to people fighting North Dakota pipeline
Lummi Nation fishermen will drive a feast of locally caught salmon this weekend all the way to Cannon Ball, N.D., to feed the Standing Rock Sioux tribe and many supporters who are fighting against the Dakota Access Pipeline. “The tribal fishermen have decided to donate their catch,” said Waylon Ballew, who met up with a handful of fishermen to filet dozens of kings and silvers behind the Lummi Nation Commodity Foods building Wednesday morning, Sept. 28. The group planned to leave Thursday night in vans and head to North Dakota with a few dozen tribal members on board, and the soon-to-be feast packed on ice. Samantha Wohlfeil reports. (Bellingham Herald)
Warm ‘blob’ in Pacific Ocean linked to toxic algae that doomed local fisheries
A new study finds that unusually warm Pacific Ocean temperatures helped cause a massive bloom of toxic algae last year that closed lucrative fisheries from California to British Columbia and disrupted marine life from seabirds to sea lions. Scientists linked the large patch of warm ocean water, nicknamed the “blob,” to the vast ribbon of toxic algae that flourished in 2015 and produced record-breaking levels of a neurotoxin that is harmful to people, fish and marine life. The outbreak of the toxin domoic acid, the largest ever recorded on the West Coast, closed razor clam seasons in Washington and Oregon and delayed lucrative Dungeness crab fisheries along the coast. High levels were also detected in many stranded marine mammals. Phuong Le reports. (Associated Press)
Petronas weighs sale to exit $27B Canada LNG project: sources
Malaysian state oil firm Petroliam Nasional Bhd is considering selling its majority stake in a $27-billion Canadian liquefied natural gas (LNG) plant, three people familiar with the matter said this week. Petroliam Nasional, or Petronas, is weighing options for the project as its finances have been squeezed after crude oil prices have collapsed by more than 50 per cent since mid-2014…. Additionally, the economics of the project have been called into question as LNG prices for delivery into the main markets in northeast Asia have slumped more than 70 per cent over nearly the same time period. (Thomson Reuters)
LNG mega-project incompatible with B.C.'s greenhouse gas target, says expert
The controversial Pacific NorthWest liquefied natural gas project that has been conditionally approved by the federal government isn't compatible with B.C.'s current greenhouse gas emission targets, according to climate policy expert Kathyrn Harrison. The project was approved with 109 conditions, one of which is a "hard cap" for yearly carbon emissions at 4.3 million tonnes. But Harrison says that the cap only applies to the actual project facility, and doesn't incorporate emissions brought on by upstream developments — the production, processing and transportation of natural gas to the project. According to the official environmental impact assessment, upstream productions would increase emissions by an additional 6.5 million tonnes. "At the provincial level, B.C.'s [emission] target for 2050 is 13 million tonnes per year," said Harrison on CBC's The Early Edition. "[The Pacific NorthWest liquefied natural gas project] alone — which is expected to operate until 2050 — would contribute 10 to 10.5 million tonnes per year." Jon Hernandez reports. (CBC) See also: LNG project's 190 conditions 'not onerous,' says environmental assessment expert (CBC)
Petrogas buys Intalco’s pier as part of $122M sale, values pier at $10M
Petrogas purchased Alcoa Intalco’s wharf, pier and associated items for $122 million this week, but only $10.2 million of the registered sale was listed as real estate subject to excise taxes. Had the whole purchase been subject to the tax, the payment lodged with Whatcom County could have been more than $2 million. Tax for sale of the wharf, which was sold for $10.2 million based on an appraisal, according to Petrogas, was $181,655. For comparison, all of Intalco was valued at $67 million for 2015 taxes, which included the wharf. Samantha Wohlfeil reports. (Bellingham Herald)
Now, your weekend tug weather--
WEST ENTRANCE U.S. WATERS STRAIT OF JUAN DE FUCA- 258 AM PDT FRI SEP 30 2016
TODAY LIGHT WIND...BECOMING NW TO 10 KT IN THE AFTERNOON. WIND WAVES 1 FT OR LESS. W SWELL 4 FT AT 10 SECONDS.
TONIGHT W WIND 5 TO 15 KT IN THE EVENING...BECOMING LIGHT. WIND WAVES 2 FT OR LESS. W SWELL 4 FT AT 10 SECONDS. A CHANCE OF SHOWERS.
SAT SE WIND TO 10 KT...RISING TO 5 TO 15 KT IN THE AFTERNOON. WIND WAVES 2 FT OR LESS. W SWELL 2 FT AT 9 SECONDS. A CHANCE OF SHOWERS IN THE MORNING...THEN SHOWERS LIKELY IN THE AFTERNOON.
SAT NIGHT SE WIND TO 10 KT. WIND WAVES 1 FT OR LESS. W SWELL 2 FT AT 9 SECONDS.
SUN SE WIND TO 10 KT IN THE MORNING...BECOMING LIGHT. WIND WAVES 1 FT OR LESS. W SWELL 3 FT AT 9 SECONDS.
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