Friday, March 9, 2018

3/9 BC pipe, PS nutrients, VanAqua suit, kids' climate, Audubon climate, murrelets, mtn goats, USFS

Black-capped chickadee [Gerald Hiam/BirdNote]
Singer's Brain Changes with the Seasons
In higher animals, the brain is like a BMW — amazing engineering, but expensive to run. In a human, the brain uses about 10 times more energy than other organs. A bird's system is exquisitely attuned to this expense. Several species, including Black-capped Chickadees, have adapted in a clever way. You can usually hear these chickadees calling throughout fall and winter. But they aren’t singing much, because they don’t need to. In their brains, the centers that control how they learn and give voice to songs shrink. But as the birds resume singing during spring, the control centers in the brain rejuvenate. (BirdNote)

'Like Standing Rock': Trans Mountain pipeline-expansion opponents plan B.C. protest
Building in the courts and halls of Canadian government for years, conflict over the mammoth Trans Mountain tar- sands oil-pipeline expansion is expected to spill into the streets of British Columbia Saturday with massive civil disobedience demonstrations. Indigenous leaders from along the pipeline route and the U.S. are expected to join a march and rally beginning Saturday in metro Vancouver. Nearly 7,000 Coast Salish Water Protectors — as the pipeline opponents call themselves — have signed up to participate, said Will George of the Tsleil-Waututh Nation, spokesman for the Protect the Inlet movement. Lynda Mapes reports. (Seattle Times)

Alberta premier threatens to cut off oil to B.C. in fight over pipeline: throne speech
The Alberta government is taking a page from the playbook of former premier Peter Lougheed by threatening to cut oil exports in its fight against B.C.'s efforts to stop the expansion of the Trans Mountain pipeline. In Thursday's throne speech, the government threatened to "invoke similar legislation" if B.C. takes "extreme and illegal actions" to stop the $7.4-billion project. Premier Rachel Notley suggested in a news conference earlier in the day that the province is particularly vulnerable to fluctuations in supply. Michelle Bellefontaine reports. (CBC)

Is the Trans Mountain pipeline really an ocean-murdering hellspawn like B.C. says it is?
If you ask the B.C. government why they’re trying to block the federally approved Trans Mountain pipeline, they will say that it’s all about protecting the ocean. “I’m standing up for the coast, man,” B.C. premier John Horgan said last month. Rather than crude oil, the Trans Mountain pipeline will carry diluted bitumen, a heavier and more viscous petroleum product. Pipeline opponents maintain that this makes the project a uniquely dangerous environmental threat. There may be some truth to that, but it’s safe to say that B.C. is currently awash in a galaxy of pipeline fears that don’t necessarily square with reality. [We] attempt to explain the risks, debunk the myths and illustrate, as best as possible, whether the Trans Mountain pipeline really is the destroyer of worlds that activists says it is. Tristin Hopper reports. (National Post)

Does Puget Sound need a diet? Concerns grow over nutrients
As the region's population grows, scientists say we can expect to see increasing amounts of nitrogen and other elements flowing into Puget Sound. Known as “nutrients” these elements are naturally occurring and even necessary for life, but officials worry that nutrients from wastewater and other human sources are tipping the balance. That could mean big problems for fish and other marine life, gradually depleting the water of oxygen and altering the food web. Chris Dunagan reports. (Salish Sea Currents)

Vancouver Aquarium ends lawsuit that boosted interest in critical documentary
Gary Charbonneau says he'll miss the free publicity the Vancouver Aquarium brought to his otherwise obscure documentary by suing him for copyright infringment. But the filmmaker isn't complaining about the aquarium's decision to drop the suit this week. "It was a major faux pas for the aquarium to bring this lawsuit forward. My numbers went from 5,000 views to 30,000 views after they sued me within a week. And the conversation about the aquarium and the film has been non-stop because of the lawsuit," said Charbonneau. Jason Proctor reports. (CBC)

'Climate Kids' Lawsuit Against US Government Cleared For Trial
The so-called “climate kids” again have had their novel case against the federal government cleared for trial. A three-judge panel of the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals on Wednesday unanimously rejected the government’s request for an order that would have directed a judge to dismiss a climate lawsuit filed by 21 youths ages 10 to 21, along with well-known climate scientist James Hanson. Six of the plaintiffs are from Eugene; 11 live in Oregon. The plaintiffs allege that their constitutional rights are being violated by a government that has known about the dangers of climate change for decades, but nonetheless promotes fossil fuel production while failing to protect the nation’s natural resources. Jack Moran reports. (Eugene Register-Guard)

Audubon Society Sets Sights On Washington Climate Policy
2018 is the year of the bird. The Audubon Society is celebrating the centennial of what it calls the most important federal bird protection law ever passed. But the group says local climate policies are just as important, including one still in play in Washington state. Audubon is taking 2018 to celebrate the importance of birds in peoples’ lives and their role in ecosystems. Each month, people all over the country are doing something – like growing native plants – to help support their feathered friends. Audubon has joined with about 100 other organizations including National Geographic and many agencies such as state Fish and Wildlife offices to spread the word. Bellamy Pailthorp reports. (KNKX)

Congresswoman Herrera Beutler asks Interior to analyze murrelet strategy
U.S. Representative Jaime Herrera Beutler in a letter last week urged U.S. Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke to make sure the habitat conservation plan (HCP) for marbled murrelets is based on science and not politically motivated. Under the bird's long term conservation strategy, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) is requiring rural counties like Pacific and Wahkiakum to set aside state-managed trust timber land from possible harvests to protect the species, thereby jeopardizing the counties’ ability to harvest timber and generate revenue to provide basic services to their residents, the congresswoman said. In the letter, Herrera Beutler stated the seabird's population is healthy in Alaska, where the majority of the population lives, but troubled in Washington's Puget Sound area. (Wahkiakum County Eagle)

Public meetings set for mountain goat relocation proposal
The state Department of Fish & Wildlife will hold four meetings with the public this month to discuss plans to move mountain goats from the Olympic mountains to the North Cascades. One of the meetings will be held in Sedro-Woolley and another in Darrington. Mountain goat relocations could begin this summer. The Sedro-Woolley meeting will be at 7 p.m. March 20 at the Mt. Baker Ranger District Office, 810 Highway 20, while the Darrington meeting will be at 7:30 p.m. March 21 at the Darrington Library Meeting Room, 1005 Cascade St. Kimberly Cauvel reports. (Skagit Valley Herald)

Female firefighter to lead Forest Service amid scandal
A female wildland firefighter has been tapped by the Trump administration to steady the U.S. Forest Service as it reels from allegations of sexual misconduct and struggles to change its male-dominated culture. Vickie Christensen was appointed interim chief of the 35,000-employee agency late Thursday. The move came roughly 24 hours after former Chief Tony Tooke abruptly retired following revelations of an investigation into alleged relationships with subordinates. Christiansen, a University of Washington graduate, has been with the Forest Service for seven years and became a deputy chief in 2016. Before joining the federal government she’d worked in forestry for 30 years at the state level, in Arizona and Washington. Matthew Brown reports. (Associated Press)

Now, your weekend tug weather--
West Entrance U.S. Waters Strait Of Juan De Fuca-  246 AM PST Fri Mar 9 2018  
SMALL CRAFT ADVISORY IN EFFECT UNTIL 9 AM PST THIS MORNING

TODAY  W wind 15 to 25 kt easing to 10 kt this morning. Wind  waves 2 to 4 ft subsiding to 1 ft or less. SW swell 9 ft at 11  seconds subsiding to 7 ft at 11 seconds in the afternoon. A chance  of showers in the morning.   

TONIGHT  SW wind to 10 kt becoming E after midnight. Wind waves  1 ft or less. SW swell 6 ft at 9 seconds.
SAT
 E wind 5 to 15 kt rising to 15 to 25 kt in the afternoon.  Wind waves 1 to 2 ft building to 2 to 4 ft in the afternoon. SW  swell 4 ft at 8 seconds.
SAT NIGHT
 SE wind 15 to 20 kt becoming E 10 to 20 kt after  midnight. Wind waves 1 to 3 ft. W swell 4 ft at 13 seconds.
SUN
 E wind 10 to 20 kt becoming 5 to 15 kt in the afternoon.  Wind waves 1 to 3 ft. W swell 5 ft at 13 seconds.

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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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