Thursday, April 12, 2018

4/12 Butterfly ESA, sport chinook, BC pipe, coast drillling, ship talk, Pruitt's EPA, P-I cuts

Island marble butterfly [Sue Vernon/WDFW]
Rare butterfly recommended for endangered species list
The U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service has proposed listing the island marble butterfly, which is found only on San Juan Island, as an endangered species. Since a state biologist discovered the butterfly fluttering across a field on San Juan Island in 1998, several efforts have been made to protect it and prevent the species from disappearing. Despite two decades of work, the species has declined, according to a news release. Fewer than 200 adult butterflies were counted during a survey in 2017. Kimberly Cauvel reports. (Skagit Valley Herald)

Fish council OKs sharp cut in sport chinook harvest off Washington
The sport anglers’ catch of chinook salmon off Washington’s coasts will drop sharply this year under a measure approved Tuesday by the Pacific Fishery Management Council. The overall harvest for recreational fishermen off Washington will be capped at 27,500 fish, a nearly 40 percent drop from the past year. This conservation measure results, in part, from the difficult ocean conditions that the chinook faced as juveniles in 2015 and 2016 when a rise in ocean temperatures off the Northwest coast knocked back their prime food supplies and reduced their survival rates. Hal Bernton reports. (Seattle Times)

'A tough lesson': Do First Nations hold trump card on Trans Mountain debate?
Between boycotts, showdowns, shareholder action and emergency cabinet meetings, it's easy to overlook the lack of a crucial perspective in the white noise currently surrounding Kinder Morgan's Trans Mountain expansion project. But if Indigenous voices are missing from this moment's very public pipeline debate, it's not because they're not speaking. Or because John Horgan, Rachel Notley, Justin Trudeau and Steven Kean have drowned them out. They're still making themselves heard where it's likely to matter most: the courts. Jason Proctor reports. (CBC)

Interior Secretary Downplays Possibility Of Drilling Off Of Oregon, Washington Coasts h
In congressional testimony Wednesday, U.S. Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke said he has heard the strong opposition from the West Coast to the Trump administration's plan for offshore oil and gas drilling. He expressed doubt drilling would ever happen along the Pacific Northwest coast. Zinke appeared before a House Appropriations subcommittee for a review of the Interior Department's budget. Olympic Peninsula Congressman Derek Kilmer, D-Washington, quizzed Zinke on offshore drilling. "I'm hoping I can ask you today if you are prepared to announce that you'll withdraw our state from consideration,” Kilmer said. Zinke said he would keep all coastal states in the planning process until it plays out. But then he basically said don't worry about it. Tom Banse reports. (KNKX)

The Secret Language of Ships    

Signs and symbols on the sides of ships tell stories about an industry few outsiders understand. Erin Van Rheenen reports. (Hakai Magazine)

Scott Pruitt’s Idea to Update an E.P.A. Keepsake: Less E.P.A., More Pruitt
When Scott Pruitt wanted to refashion the Environmental Protection Agency’s “challenge coin” — a type of souvenir medallion with military origins that has become a status symbol among civilians — he proposed an unusual design: Make it bigger, and delete the E.P.A. logo. Mr. Pruitt instead wanted the coin to feature some combination of symbols more reflective of himself and the Trump administration. Among the possibilities: a buffalo, to evoke Mr. Pruitt’s native Oklahoma, and a Bible verse to reflect his faith. Other ideas included using the Great Seal of the United States — a design similar to the presidential seal — and putting Mr. Pruitt’s name around the rim in large letters, according to Ronald Slotkin, a career E.P.A. employee who retired this year, and two people familiar with the proposals who asked to remain anonymous because they said they feared retribution. Lisa Friedman and Kenneth P. Vogel report. (NY Times)

More layoffs at the already depleted Seattle P-I
SeattlePi.com, the remaining lifeboat from the Seattle Post-Intelligencer’s dramatic 2009 collapse, will lose a third of its already depleted editorial staff. In what its owner, the Hearst Corporation, views as a reorganization, two employees were laid off and one resigned, according to a source close to the recent events. One other employee recently departed and a fifth will leave at the end of the week, Crosscut was told. When the dust settles, the local news website will have just seven remaining staff. It’s another chapter in the outlet’s decline from around 160 staffers in 2009, to about 20 who moved to SeattlePi.com when the newspaper folded, to the skin and bones team still remaining. David Kroman reports. (Crosscut)

Now, your tug weather--
West Entrance U.S. Waters Strait Of Juan De Fuca-  245 AM PDT Thu Apr 12 2018  
SMALL CRAFT ADVISORY FOR HAZARDOUS SEAS IN EFFECT THROUGH LATE
 TONIGHT  
TODAY
 S wind to 10 kt becoming NE 5 to 15 kt in the afternoon.  Wind waves 2 ft or less. W swell 10 ft at 13 seconds. Showers  likely.
TONIGHT
 SW wind 10 to 20 kt becoming SE after midnight. Wind  waves 1 to 3 ft. W swell 12 ft at 15 seconds. Showers in the  evening then rain after midnight.

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