Friday, March 23, 2018

3/23 Flatworm, BC LNG, Puget Sound $, Van waterfront, fish farm ban, sea lion feast, place-base fishing, Rachel Carson, BC gas, population, Billy Frank Jr, garbage patch, birds

Flatworm [Mary Jo Adams]
Giant flatworm (Leaf worm) Kaburakia excelsa
Kaburakia excelsa
can grow to a length of at least 9 cm (3.5 in). It is flat and nearly as broad as it is long….This species has no suckers on the underside. It can be distinguished from other flatworms in the area by its much larger size, and is in fact one of the largest flatworms in the world…. This flatworm is native to the western seaboard of North America, its range extending from Sitka in Alaska to Newport Harbor in California. It is found on the lower shore and in the shallow sub-littoral zone, under rocks, on pilings, on the fouled hulls of boats and among mussels and rock-boring bivalves. (Wikipedia)

Premier Horgan offers tax breaks to LNG industry
Premier John Horgan offered billions of dollars worth of tax breaks to liquefied natural gas producers Thursday in a move to entice the construction of an export facility in Kitimat. Environmental groups called it a reckless abandonment of the NDP’s climate promises and Green Leader Andrew Weaver said he might withdraw his support of the minority NDP government. Horgan said he hopes the exemptions, which forgo up to $6 billion in potential government revenue over 40 years, would lure the Shell-led LNG Canada project to make a final go-ahead decision this year on its $40-billion LNG proposal for Kitimat and an associated gas pipeline. Rob Shaw reports. (Vancouver Sun)

Puget Sound cleanup survives Trump attempt to kill it
The Trump administration failed in its efforts to wipe out money to clean up Puget Sound and other waterways from Chesapeake Bay to the Great Lakes, as Congress has refused to dry up spending on water programs. Puget Sound gets $28 million as part of $8.08 billion in funding for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.  The Trump administration had wanted to slash EPA's budget to $5.7 billion, in real dollars its lowest spending in 40 years. The money is contained in a mammoth omnibus federal spending bill, passed Thursday by the House of Representatives and due for final action Friday in the Senate. [The bill passed the Senate and awaits the President's signature.] Joel Connelly reports. (SeattlePI.Com)

Vancouver’s waterfront stressed and needs cooperative relief: report
Vancouver’s waterfront is under stress on a lot of fronts, a new report led by the conservation group Georgia Strait Alliance has found, which will require more co-ordinated attention to help relieve it. The stress is from the loss of industrial land for residential use, from increasing numbers of people trying to squeeze into crowded beaches and natural spaces and the ever-present threat of rising sea levels due to climate change. “(Vancouver) is fantastic about talking about the green city, we need them to start talking about the ‘blue city,’” said Christianne Wilhelmson, executive director of the Georgia Strait Alliance. Derrick Penner reports. See also: What should Vancouver's waterfront look like in 30 years?  Jesse Johnston reports. (CBC)

Eyes Over Puget Sound
Surface Conditions Report, winter 2018. Up-to-date observations of water quality conditions in Puget Sound and coastal bays. (Washington Department of Ecology)

Atlantic salmon farms banned, 8 months after great fish escape
Atlantic salmon farming has been banned from Washington state waters. Gov. Jay Inslee signed the ban on non-native fish farms into law Thursday morning in Olympia…. The move comes eight months after an ill-fated fish farm near Anacortes started to come undone in a strong current on an otherwise calm summer day. The floating farm, owned by New Brunswick, Canada-based Cooke Aquaculture, tore apart a month later, letting as many as 250,000 Atlantic salmon escape into Puget Sound. John Ryan reports. (KUOW)

Sea lions feast on fragile fish in US Northwest survival war
It's a frustrating dance between California sea lions and wildlife managers that's become all too familiar in recent months. The bizarre survival war has intensified recently as the sea lion population rebounds and fish populations decline in the Pacific Northwest Gillian Flaccus reports.(Associated Press)

New ways of fishing could better protect endangered salmon
Higher standards of “sustainability” for salmon — recently developed by the Wild Fish Conservancy — are designed to put salmon on people’s tables with virtually no impact on depleted salmon runs. The new standards, which could become part of a certification program, are built upon the concept that fishing should take place closer to streams with abundant runs of salmon. The standards call for fishing methods that can take a portion of the fish from the abundant runs while allowing fish from depleted runs to pass on by and spawn naturally. Chris Dunagan reports. (Watching Our Water Ways)

The Right Way to Remember Rachel Carson
Not until the end of her life did she write the work for which she is now known. Before then, she had always thought of herself as a poet of the sea. Jill Lepore reports. (New Yorker)

Prices at the pump will rise because of Trans Mountain pipeline expansion
Gas prices around the Lower Mainland recently spiked to more than $1.50 a litre and a well-known economist says this is just the beginning. Robyn Allan, an independent economist and former president of ICBC, argues prices will go even higher with the completion of Kinder Morgan's Trans Mountain pipeline expansion. Clare Hennig reports. (CBC)

New census numbers show just how crowded Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue is becoming
Last year, enough people arrived in Pierce, King and Snohomish counties to fill Cheney Stadium nearly 10 times over. From April 2016 through April 2017, the population of the Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue area grew by more than 64,000 people, according to data released Thursday by the U.S. Census Bureau. The three-county area was the sixth-fastest growing metro area in the country, topped only by Dallas, Houston, Atlanta, Phoenix and Washington, D.C., areas, the Census Bureau says…. The overall population rose to nearly 3.9 million residents for the three counties. Kate Martin And Debbie Cockrell report. (Tacoma News Tribune)

Billy Frank Jr. Honored With National Day of Recognition
Last Friday members of the Washington state Congressional delegation passed a resolution designating March 9, the day of Billy Frank Jr.’s birth, as an official national day of remembrance of his life, legacy and accomplishments. Also on Frank Jr.’s birthday on Friday was a dedication and blessing of a park and trail in Frank Jr.’s name by the Port of Olympia. U.S. Senators Maria Cantwell (D-Washington) and Patty Murray (D-Washington) and U.S. Representatives Denny Heck (D-Washington) and Derek Kilmer (D-Washington) introduced a resolution to honor Billy Frank Jr. (Nisqually Valley News)

Great Pacific Garbage Patch is 16 times bigger than previously estimated, study finds
A new study involving scientists from around the world suggests there are more than 79,000 tonnes of ocean plastic in a 1.6 million square kilometre area of the North Pacific Ocean, often referred to as the Great Pacific Garbage Patch. That's 16 times more than previous estimates.  The Ocean Cleanup Foundation commissioned the expedition in 2015 to examine the eastern part of the patch. Using 30 vessels and a C-130 Hercules airplane, they catalogued a sample of more than one million pieces of plastic, mostly made up of microplastics that measure less than 0.5 centimetres in diameter. The study suggests the total amount of microplastics in the Great Pacific Garbage Patch totals more 1.8 trillion pieces, a number that far exceeds earlier estimates. Nicole Mortillaro reports. (CBC)

Study: National Park Bird Populations Likely To Change Because Of Climate Change
Scientists from the Audubon Society and the National Parks Service have teamed up to look at the effects of climate change on birds. The study predicts the behavior of 513 species across 274 national parks in summer and winter. The authors found on average nearly a quarter of the bird species found in popular park destinations could be completely different by mid-century.   The effects look less severe in Washington’s national parks, but still dozens of species are expected to move on as their habitat changes. Audubon has a slick new website where you can find data on that future. Three of the parks are in Washington state. Bellamy Pailthorp reports. (KNKX)

Now, your weekend tug weather--
West Entrance U.S. Waters Strait Of Juan De Fuca-  223 AM PDT Fri Mar 23 2018  
 SE wind 15 to 25 kt. Wind waves 2 to 4 ft. W swell 7 ft  at 11 seconds. A chance of showers. A slight chance of tstms in  the afternoon.
 SE wind 5 to 15 kt becoming S to 10 kt after midnight.  Wind waves 2 ft or less. W swell 7 ft at 10 seconds. A slight  chance of tstms in the evening. A chance of showers.
 S wind to 10 kt becoming NW in the afternoon. Wind waves  2 ft or less. W swell 6 ft at 9 seconds. A chance of showers.
 NW wind 5 to 15 kt easing to 10 kt after midnight.  Wind waves 2 ft or less. W swell 5 ft at 9 seconds.
 W wind to 10 kt rising to 5 to 15 kt in the afternoon.  Wind waves 2 ft or less. W swell 4 ft at 9 seconds.

"Salish Sea News & Weather" is compiled as a community service by Mike Sato. To subscribe, send your name and email to msato (@) Your email information is never shared and you can unsubscribe at any time.

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