Wednesday, March 14, 2018

3/14 Newt, orcas & salmon, BC pipe, no coast drill, forst restoration, Lolita, Dockside Flats, Pt Hudson

Rough-skinned newt [Henk Wallays/IUCN Red List]
Rough-skinned Newt
In Washington, Rough-skinned Newts occur primarily west of the Cascade Crest in the Pacific Coast, Puget Trough and West Cascades Ecoregions. When threatened, newts arch the head towards the tail (unken reflex). This posture reveals the bright orange coloration of the underside that warns predators of its toxicity. With the exception of the Common Garter Snake (Thamnophis sirtalis), few vertebrate predators can survive ingesting a Rough-skinned Newt. The highly toxic nature of this species allows them to be one of the few terrestrial salamanders active and conspicuous during the day. The toxin (tetrodotoxin) is produced within the skin, not secreted. Newts can be handled safely but care should be taken with small children prone to putting things in their mouths. After handling any amphibian, one should avoid touching the mucus membranes of the eyes, nose and mouth until hands have been washed. (WDFW) See also: Rare Salamander's Survival Threatened By Logging, Environmentalists Say  Jes Burns reports. (OPB/EarthFix)

Stephen Hawking: Visionary physicist dies aged 76
The truth is out there.

Gov. Inslee to request more work for chinook, orca recover
With the region’s southern resident orca population continuing to decline, Gov. Jay Inslee is calling on state agencies to work toward the recovery of the whales and the chinook salmon they rely on for food. Inslee will issue an executive order today requesting that state agencies take immediate action and make long-term plans to recover the salmon and orca populations, according to a news release…. Inslee’s order requires state agencies, in collaboration with tribes, stakeholders and other governments, do more to develop policies to protect the fish and whales that are integral to the region’s identity and economy. The order directs the formation of a state task force and directs that task force to coordinate its efforts with Alaska, British Columbia, Oregon, California and Idaho. Kimberly Cauvel reports. (Skagit Valley Herald)

Government announces details of $1.5B plan to protect coasts, encourage trade
The federal government released details today of its plan to sink at least $1.5 billion into Canada's ocean coastlines in a bid to protect killer whales, guard against oil spills and enable trade. The Oceans Protection Plan "is the largest investment ever made to to protect Canada's coasts and waterways," Transport Canada said in a release. Transportation Minister Marc Garneau told reporters and shipping industry representatives that the program would be implemented over the next 11 years.  Malone Mullin repots. (CBC)

CAPP opposes threat to cut off oil to B.C. in Kinder Morgan battle
The Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers (CAPP) says the threat by Alberta's premier to cut off oil supply to British Columbia is not "the appropriate tool" to pressure the province into supporting the controversial Trans Mountain pipeline expansion.... Instead, the provincial government should pressure the federal government to solve this debate, [president and CEO Tim McMillan said ]. Rachel Ward reports. (CBC) See also: Alberta legislature unanimously passes motion in favour of Trans Mountain expansion  (CBC)

Zinke To WA Lawmaker: West Coast Lacks 'Resources Of Any Weight' For Offshore Drilling
Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke told a Washington state lawmaker that his proposal for offshore oil and gas drilling will reflect the “interests of Washington.” “You should know off the coast of Oregon, Washington, most of California, there are no known resources of any weight,” Zinke told Washington State Democratic Sen. Maria Cantwell at a Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee hearing Tuesday. “And again I put everything on so we could have a dialogue and then take what’s appropriate off. I think I’m going to mark down Washington as opposed to oil and gas drilling.”  Ericka Cruz Guevarra reports. (OPB)

Can an experiment reinvigorate Washington's coastal forests?
The Nature Conservancy is trying to figure out how to bring back forests that once dominated our coast. Dan Chasan reports. (Crosscut)

New effort to bring 'Lolita the killer whale' back to Northwest from Miami Seaquarium

The Lummi Nation is making a serious effort to return Tokitae, also known as Lolita the killer whale, back to her ancestral waters of the Northwest. On Tuesday, leaders of the Lummi Nation will join Florida gubernatorial candidate Philip Levine and the Orca Network to ask the Miami Seaquarium to formally release Tokitae from captivity. The killer whale was taken from the waters of Penn Cove in 1970 and for the last 47 years, she’s been living in a tank at the Miami Seaquarium…. The Lummis believe they have an ancestral and treaty rights to bring Tokitae back to the waters from where she was taken. The tribe is in negotiations with a landowner on Orcas Island to create a permanent pen in a cove that would separate Tokitae for her safety but still allow her to communicate with other whales. Matt Markovich reports. (KOMO)

Dockside Flats waterfront project before hearings examiner
Dockside Flats, which aims to transform the former Les Schwab building at 210 State Avenue NW into a mixed-use development, is set to come before the Olympia hearing examiner next month. The hearing examiner meeting is set for 6:30 p.m. April 2 at Olympia City Hall, 601 Fourth Ave. E. The hearing examiner will hear public comment before making a decision on the shoreline substantial development permit and shoreline conditional use permit for the proposed project. Both are required because the project falls within 200 feet of the shoreline. Rolf Boone reports. (Olympian)

Northwest Maritime Center offers plan to Port of Port Townsend for Point Hudson
The Northwest Maritime Center has proposed to the Port of Port Townsend that the nonprofit maritime center manage the day-to-day operations of Point Hudson through a 50-year master lease, which would give the organization control over the maritime heritage campus and marina. The proposal would cost $6 million and would be funded by donations to a fundraising campaign, which would begin if the port agrees to the plan. Jeannie McMacken reports. (Peninsula Daily News)

Now, your tug weather--
West Entrance U.S. Waters Strait Of Juan De Fuca-  300 AM PDT Wed Mar 14 2018
TODAY  SW wind to 10 kt becoming 5 to 15 kt in the afternoon. Wind  waves 2 ft or less. SW swell 7 ft at 10 seconds. A chance of showers.
 SW wind 5 to 15 kt becoming SE after midnight. Wind waves  2 ft or less. W swell 6 ft at 9 seconds. A slight chance of showers.

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