Tuesday, October 17, 2017

10/17 S-bend, 'Big Dark,' cetacean brain, Clallam shores, BC oyster toxin, Chief Seattle, oil futures

S-bend pipe [BBC News]
How the humble S-bend made modern toilets possible
BBC's program, "50 Things That Made the Modern Economy," discusses watchmaker Alexander Cumming's world-changing invention: "In 1775, Cumming patented the S-bend. This became the missing ingredient to create the flush toilet-  and, with it, public sanitation as we know it." Tim Harford reports. (BBC)

‘The Big Dark’: Satellite image shows future rain clouds stretching from China to Puget Sound 
After a relatively benign first half of the month — with only about a half-inch of precipitation in two weeks — we're likely to get that much dumped on us on Tuesday alone, the National Weather Service says. Christine Clarridge reports. (Seattle Times) Heavy rains expected to pound Metro Vancouver until Tuesday morning   Chance of heavy snow and high winds ‘could reduce visibility to near zero' over Rogers Pass Cathy Kearney reports. (CBC)

Whales and dolphins have human-like social structures and culture, say researchers
Like humans, some whales are capable of complex social interactions and cultural behaviours, which a newly published study suggests may be linked to the size of the cetaceans' brains.  The research, largely done at the University of British Columbia, sheds new light on similarities between whale and human evolution and identifies a kind of evolutionary feedback loop between the behaviours and growing brain size. "Similar pressures and possibilities in the environment can select for a similar outcome," said Kieran Fox, now a postdoctoral student at California's Stanford University and co-author of the new paper in Nature Ecology and Evolution. (CBC)

Clallam County taking comment on Shoreline Master Program update
Clallam County is accepting comment on the first major overhaul to its Shoreline Master Program — a 258-page document guiding future development along waterways — until Dec. 12. A public hearing is scheduled for 10:30 a.m. Dec. 12 at the Clallam County Courthouse, where the Clallam County commissioners will consider adopting the Planning Commission’s recommended changes to the SMP. Once adopted, the SMP would go to the state Department of Ecology for approval. Jesse Major reports. (Peninsula Daily News)

A Hard Shore Is a Dead Shore
How anti-erosion measures hurt fish—and living shorelines may help. Amorina Kingdon reports. (Hakai Magazine)

CFIA: Certain B.C. farm-raised oysters recalled due to biotoxin  

Federal health officials say some farm-raised Pacific oysters are being recalled due to a marine biotoxin which causes paralytic shellfish poisoning. The Canadian Food Inspection Agency says the oysters were produced by two firms in Richmond, B.C. — Albion Farms and Fisheries Ltd. and Union Bay Seafood Ltd. The Albion Farms oysters were sold from Oct. 9 to Oct. 16 and the Union Bay oysters were sold from Oct. 10 to Oct. 16. (Canadian Press)

Remembering Chief Seattle and the Duwamish
If there is any indication of a name’s ability to exist far beyond the life of its owner, it can be found in the Pacific Northwest’s largest city. Besides the fact that his name was the basis for a major metropolis, most people likely know very little about Chief Seattle. Author David Buerge seeks to change that with the release this Tuesday of his comprehensive biography, “Chief Seattle and the Town That Took His Name,” the result of two decades of research and writing…. Seattle, who served as chief of the Suquamish and Duwamish tribes, retains an important legacy in the region, as it was he who made the decision to peacefully yield the lands around Puget Sound to white settlers in the region. Alex Visser reports. (UW Daily)

Canadians trips to the US have been in decline for five years
Incidents of mass violence and racial rhetoric from the White House are discouraging some Canadians from travelling to the United States…. The mass shootings at Sandy Hook, where 20 six- and seven-year-old children were killed, and in Las Vegas, where 58 people were killed, made a lasting impression on many Canadians…. Travel to the US from Canada is up five per cent in the first half of 2017, compared with the same period last year, according to the US International Trade Association. However, arrivals by air, water, car and foot for fiscal 2017 show no increase from the year before, according to US Customs and Border Protection (CBP). Visits by Canadians to the US have been dropping steadily since 2013 in virtual lockstep with the falling Canadian dollar, until this year when the dollar modestly recovered but visits did not. Between 2014 and 2016 the Canadian dollar dropped 22 per cent from about US95 cents to US74 cents, while border crossings dropped 20 per cent. The dollar is up ten per cent in 2017, but despite the extra buying power, border crossings have not rebounded. Randy Shore reports. (Vancouver Sun)

New era of oil supply certainty forces changes in Canadian producers' strategies
A shift in global oil markets sentiment is underway, replacing decades of scarcity fears with confidence in surpluses, capping oil prices and forcing changes in the way the industry works, observers say. "We're moving from a mindset where oil was considered a scarce resource to one now where it's more of a plentiful resource," said Steve Reynish, executive vice-president of strategy and corporate development at Suncor Energy Inc. (TSX:SU), speaking at a conference in Calgary last week…. The world's current oil oversupply has been largely driven by U.S. shale oil and gas plays, Reynish said. According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, Canada's largest energy customer has boosted domestic oil production from less than four million barrels per day in 2008 to 9.2 million bpd now, while gas output has risen from 67 million cubic feet per day to 89 million cf/d. Dan Healing reports. (Canadian Press)

Now, your tug weather--
West Entrance U.S. Waters Strait Of Juan De Fuca-  423 AM PDT Tue Oct 17 2017  
GALE WARNING IN EFFECT UNTIL 7 AM PDT THIS MORNING
 SMALL CRAFT ADVISORY IN EFFECT THROUGH THIS AFTERNOON  
TODAY
 S wind 25 to 35 kt becoming W 15 to 25 kt early in the  morning. Combined seas 11 ft at 11 seconds. Rain in the morning then  a chance of rain in the afternoon.
TONIGHT
 SW wind to 10 kt becoming S 5 to 15 kt after midnight.  Wind waves 2 ft or less. W swell 9 ft at 10 seconds. A chance of  rain 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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