Thursday, May 4, 2017

5/4 Springer, coal levy, air permit, oil fire, COASST, Navy training, bird sanctuaries, False Cr, urban life, ferry

Spriinger and calf Spirit, July 2013 [Graeme Ellis photo]
"Celebrate Springer!"
"Celebrate Springer!" marks the 15th anniversary of the dramatic rescue in Puget Sound of the orphaned orca Springer (A-73) and the heroic efforts by Washington and British Columbia teams working together to return her safely to her home 300 miles north in Johnstone Strait at the north end of Vancouver Island. The 2002 Springer rescue team will reconvene in programs and events in Puget Sound, Georgia Strait and Telegraph Cove in May, June and July to give first-hand accounts of how Springer was identified, rescued and rehabilitated. The first program, "Springer's Story," is on May 20 at the Vashon Theater.

B.C. premier can't impose thermal coal tax, says Rachel Notley
Alberta Premier Rachel Notley says British Columbia likely doesn't have the authority to slap a $70-per-tonne tax on thermal coal shipments proposed by B.C. Premier Christy Clark. Clark, in the midst of a provincial election campaign, has said she wants Ottawa to ban thermal coal shipments from the U.S. as retaliation against new tariffs on softwood lumber imposed by the Trump administration. If her B.C. Liberals are re-elected next week, Clark vowed Tuesday she will impose a $70-per-tonne carbon levy on thermal coal if the federal government refuses to take action. Michelle Bellefontaine reports. (CBC)

Washington State Approves Draft Air Permit For Vancouver Oil Terminal
A proposed oil terminal in Vancouver, Washington, gained approval of a key permit Tuesday. The Washington State Energy Facility Site Evaluation Council, or EFSEC, met in executive session before voting to release the draft notice of construction air permit for the controversial project. EFSEC Spokeswoman Anna Gill said the draft permit triggers a 30-day public comment period lasting through June 7. Permit documents and a public hearing date will be announced on the state energy board’s website Wednesday afternoon.  Molly Solomon reports. (OPB/EarthFix)

Risk of fire disaster has Burnaby residents reeling over Trans Mountain approval
…. A dozen massive tanks filled with crude oil sit halfway down the mountain, immediately below the only roads out of the growing community called UniverCity where they live with about 5,000 others. A Kinder Morgan Canada spokesperson says the storage tanks, officially known as the Burnaby Terminal, have operated without a fire for 60 years. Firefighters did, however, put out a small brush fire near the tank farm in 2016. If Kinder Morgan’s Trans Mountain pipeline expansion begins construction this fall as planned, it will add 14 new, larger tanks for a total of 26 on Burnaby Mountain. It’s part of the company’s $7.4 billion-project to twin its existing pipeline for 90 per cent of the route from Edmonton to the shores of Burrard Inlet in Metro Vancouver. Erin Ellis reports. (National Observer)

Drawing Meaning from Death, One Seabird at a Time
In the Pacific Northwest, the diligence of citizen scientists is shedding light on the lives, and deaths, of seabirds. Larry Pynn reports on the Coastal Observation and Seabird Survey Team (COASST). (Hakai Magazine)

Navy explains plans for expanded special forces training area
A large, black torpedo glides toward shore. Battery-powered, it barely hums. The sides crack open, and SCUBA divers emerge. Laden with gear, they swim and trudge to the beach, rifles trained inland, and sneak through the woods to their target. These are the Navy SEALS of a special warfare group based out of Pearl Harbor, who could be coming soon to a beach near you. The Navy held an open house Tuesday night in Poulsbo to inform the public of its plans to expand the SEAL training area. Submersible insertion and extraction training has been conducted mostly invisibly here for 30 years, including since 2014 at Scenic Beach, Illahee and Blake Island state parks in Kitsap County. The underwater vehicles and their teams have been seen at the Tracyton and Evergreen-Rotar boat ramps. Ed Friedrich reports. (Kitsap Sun)

Bird Sanctuaries: a native answer to an ecosystem under threat
As birds face threats to their survival, creating native landscapes gives them a leg up in a sometimes hostile world. Native plants are those that occur naturally in a region in which they evolved. Without them and the insects that co-evolved with them, local birds can't survive. Martha Baskin brings us this ambient rich story featuring junkos, flickers, yellow throated warblers and rufous hummingbirds. (Green Acres Radio) See also: Neighborhood Flyways Symposium  On a recent April afternoon of rare blue sky and sunshine, a group of about 100 Seattleites gathered at the historic Town Hall on First Hill to talk about the future of urban tree canopy preservation at the Neighborhood Flyways Symposium. Bryony Angell reports. (Seattle Audubon)

False Creek's high bacteria count likely due to resident boaters
It's dirty, it's smelly — and in the summer the E. coli count can get dangerously high. Now, a new report before city council says the main cause of seasonally high bacteria counts in False Creek is some people living on their boats aren't properly disposing their sewage. (CBC)

Urban lifestyles help to protect the Puget Sound ecosystem
The state of Washington estimates that the Puget Sound area will grow by more than 1.5 million residents within the next two decades. That is expected to have profound effects on the environment as more and more people move to undeveloped areas. The race is on to protect this critical rural habitat, but planners say what happens in the cities may be just as important. Christopher Dunagan reports. (Salish Sea Currents)

Legislators make case for adding another ferry to shopping list
Kitsap lawmakers are pushing to keep the ferry assembly line churning. Most local representatives signed letters urging House and Senate transportation committee chairs to include funding for a fifth 144-car vessel in the 2017-19 budget. However, when the document was approved April 21, it denied money for another Olympic-class boat. It did include a proviso directing Washington State Ferries to submit a cost estimate by June 30, including construction, operations and potential savings from replacing an existing vessel. Ed Friedrich reports. (Kitsap Sun)

Now, your tug weather--
WEST ENTRANCE U.S. WATERS STRAIT OF JUAN DE FUCA-  254 AM PDT THU MAY 4 2017  

TODAY
 E WIND TO 10 KT BECOMING W 10 TO 20 KT IN THE AFTERNOON.  WIND WAVES LESS THAN 1 FT BECOMING 1 TO 3 FT IN THE AFTERNOON. W  SWELL 7 FT AT 12 SECONDS. AREAS OF FOG IN THE MORNING.
TONIGHT  W WIND 10 TO 20 KT EASING TO 10 KT AFTER MIDNIGHT.  WIND WAVES 1 TO 3 FT SUBSIDING TO 1 FT OR LESS AFTER MIDNIGHT. W  SWELL 6 FT AT 12 SECONDS. A SLIGHT CHANCE OF SHOWERS IN THE  EVENING THEN A CHANCE OF SHOWERS AFTER MIDNIGHT.

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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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