Wednesday, February 7, 2018

2/7 Jellies, oil & wine, First Nations protest, WA valve turner, Idaho climate change, perfluorinated chemicals

Jellies [Keith Holmes/Hakai Institute]
Blooming marvellous: drones give B.C. researchers new view of 'enormous' jellyfish clusters
Technology is allowing researchers in British Columbia to study blooms of jellyfish and their impact on the ocean in a whole new way. UBC oceanography professor Brian Hunt and undergraduate student Jessica Schaub have been using drones to get a better picture of the size and composition of clusters of moon jellyfish off B.C.'s central coast. Images from cameras soaring high above the ocean provide a bird's-eye view that can't be replicated on the water, Hunt said. Gemma Karstens-Smith reports. (Canadian Press)

Oil, water and wine: Escalating Alberta-B.C. feud threatens future of Trans Mountain pipeline
A clash between British Columbia and Alberta over the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion was probably inevitable, but the surprisingly emotional nature of the conflict and its recent escalation makes a compromise less likely. In the week or so since B.C. proposed new restrictions on bitumen shipments that would flow through the expanded pipeline from Alberta to the West Coast, there have been threats of lawsuits and economic retaliation — and on Tuesday, a move by Alberta to block imports of B.C. wine. A feud between provincial politicians is one thing, but the Trans Mountain conflict is generating worry and anger among residents of both provinces, making an easy or obvious public detente all but impossible. Tony Seskus reports. (CBC)

First Nations launching call for mass demonstration to protest Trans Mountain
First Nations communities and their supporters are planning to ratchet up on-the-ground resistance to Kinder Morgan Inc.'s planned expansion of the Trans Mountain pipeline with a call for a mass demonstration on Burnaby Mountain in March. Members of the Tsleil-Waututh First Nation – which is challenging the federal approval in court – is launching a campaign of volunteer recruitment and training Tuesday through a network of allied Indigenous communities and environmental groups. Shawn McCarthy reports. (Globe and Mail)

Washington 'Valve Turner' Activist Sentenced To Prison
A Washington climate activist is the first “valve turner” to go to prison for shutting off the flow of oil from Canada’s tar sands region into the U.S. In October 2016, five activists got fed up with the usual ways to fight climate change. They decided to take direct action and coordinated a protest by shutting off oil pipelines carrying tar sands oil into the U.S. The “valve turners” coordinated efforts to shut off pipelines in Washington, Montana, Minnesota and North Dakota. Now, one of those activists is going to prison for the protest. Seattle resident Michael Foster was sentenced to three years in prison — with two of those years deferred — for his role in shutting off TransCanada’s Keystone pipeline in North Dakota. Courtney Flatt reports. (NWPB/EarthFix)

Idaho Stripped Climate Change From School Guidelines. Now, It’s a Battle
The political fight over global warming has extended to science education in recent years as several states have attempted to weaken or block new teaching standards that included information about climate science. But only in Idaho has the state legislature stripped all mentions of human-caused climate change from statewide science guidelines while leaving the rest of the standards intact.Now teachers, parents and students are pushing back, hoping to convince the Republican-controlled Idaho Legislature to approve revised standards, which science proponents say are watered down but would still represent a victory for climate-change education in the state. The Idaho House education committee could vote as soon as Wednesday on whether to allow the revised language into the state’s curriculum.  Livia Albeck-Ripka reports. (NY Times) See also:  A record-breaking number of scientists are running for office this year To stand up to climate change deniers and protect science, a wave of candidates from science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) backgrounds are running for local and federal office in 2018. More than 60 STEM candidates have announced a bid for federal office, while almost 200 are running for state legislature and another 200 for local school boards, according to 314 Action, a political action committee. (Grist)

What’s on your burger wrapper? In your drinking water? Will legislators ban cancer-promoting chemicals?
…. So-called “perfluorinated chemicals” turned up in Issaquah’s drinking water in 2016, costing the city $1 million to install new water filters. Perfluorinated chemicals from firefighting foams have also contaminated drinking water in Coupeville on Whidbey Island, Joint Base Lewis McCord, and near Spokane Fairchild Air Force Base and nearby Airway Heights in Washington. They have also fouled drinking water in communities in 33 other states. And in a study that collected fast-food packaging in western Washington and other locations, the same chemicals are found in one-third of the paper wrappers.Now state lawmakers are considering legislation that would make Washington the first state to regulate this class of chemicals, nicknamed PFAS. Caroline Halter reports. (Investigate West)

Now, your tug weather--
West Entrance U.S. Waters Strait Of Juan De Fuca-  241 AM PST Wed Feb 7 2018  
SMALL CRAFT ADVISORY IN EFFECT FROM THIS EVENING THROUGH
 THURSDAY EVENING  
TODAY
 SW wind 5 to 15 kt easing to 10 kt in the afternoon.  Wind waves 2 ft or less. W swell 4 ft at 12 seconds. A chance of  rain.
TONIGHT
 E wind 5 to 15 kt becoming S 15 to 25 kt after  midnight. Wind waves 2 ft or less building to 2 to 4 ft after  midnight. W swell 5 ft at 12 seconds. A chance of rain.
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