Wednesday, May 23, 2018

5/23 Decorator crab, BC pipe, shoreline protection, stormwater costs, San Juan Is battle

Decorator crab [Vancouver Aquarium]
Decorator crab Oregonia gracilis
This crab decorates more liberally than any of the other decorator crabs in this area.   Will eat carrion.  Predators include Pacific halibut.  In Puget Sound area, eggs may be carried during most seasons.  Recently hatched eggs are orange-red; eggs nearly ready to hatch are reddish-brown. Range is Bering sea to Monterey,CA; found intertidal to 436 m deep. (Walla Walla University)

B.C. sues Alberta over turn-off-the-taps legislation
The B.C. government has filed a statement of claim in Alberta's Court of Queen's Bench over legislation that would allow Alberta to restrict oil and gas shipments to B.C. The legislation was passed last week in response to B.C.'s continued opposition to the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion. If it is used, it could cause already high gas prices at B.C. pumps to spike. The statement of claim seeks a declaration that the Preserving Canada's Economic Prosperity Act is unconstitutional and can't be used. Megan Thomas reports. (CBC) See also: Alberta's Rachel Notley slams B.C. over Trans Mountain 'legal rope-a-dope,' says pipeline agreement close Emma Graney reports. (Vancouver Sun)

Lawsuit seeks more review of projects that 'armor' Puget Sound shoreline
.... Several environmental groups filed suit Monday in federal court seeking to expand permit review by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to thousands of miles of shoreline when a new bulkhead or seawall is considered. The suit is intended to prevent more damage to the shoreline, even as work is underway to repair past destruction.... More protection is needed for the crucial zone where the land meets the sea, said Amy Carey, executive director of Sound Action, a nonprofit based in Seattle that serves as a watchdog on environmental permits for bulkheads, sea walls and other construction in the nearshore. More than 67 percent of Central Puget Sound has been hardened along the shoreline with rock and sea walls and bulkheads. Puget Sound-wide, more than a quarter of the natural shoreline similarly has been lost.... Sound Action joined with other environmental groups in a lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court Monday for the Western District of Seattle by Earthjustice, seeking expanded environmental review of projects that wall off or harden the shore. Today the majority of shoreline-armoring projects in Puget Sound get no federal review. Not by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, or by fish and wildlife agencies to protect threatened and endangered species. Lynda Mapes reports. (Seattle Times)

Seattle ‘mega-project’ balloons by an extra $147M
A massive wastewater tunnel project that will stretch between Ballard and Wallingford will be $147 million more expensive than originally thought, Seattle officials said Tuesday. Where the Ship Canal Water Quality Project was once believed to cost around $423 million, it will now cost $570 million. The project is a joint effort between King County and the City of Seattle and is the first “mega-project” Seattle Public Utilities has ever undertaken. Seattle will be on the hook for about $95 million of the cost increase, with the County picking up the rest. In 2014, officials estimated it would cost the city and county $423 million, with Seattle absorbing 65 percent of the costs and the county paying for the rest. From the beginning, the project has driven up customer bills, which are slated to go up next year by about 8 percent for single family homes and nearly 9 percent for apartments. But in an interview Tuesday, Project Executive Keith Ward with Seattle Public Utilities said the higher project cost will not push utility bills higher. Seattle has long struggled with nasty overflows into the ship canal, Lake Union and Lake Washington. The current tunnels combine rainwater and sewage, diverting the two at a fork in the pipe. The system works fine in dry conditions, but in the wet months, the tunnels are less effective, leading to overruns. It all came to a head with a 2013 consent decree between the city, the state and the federal government to dramatically reduce sewage and wastewater runoff into Seattle area waters. David Kroman reports. (Crosscut)  See also: Cost rises for Port of Port Angeles stormwater treatment facility construction  The Port of Port Angeles’ Marine Terminal Stormwater Treatment facility, originally budgeted for $2.05 million, will cost $2.36 million to build and $2.73 million overall. Paul Gottlieb reports. (Peninsula Daily News)

If you like to watch: Epic battle between eagle, fox and rabbit on San Juan Island
Nature was on grand display on Washington's San Juan Island this month — and photographer Kevin Ebi was there to document it. He describes the scene as a 'dramatic act of thievery' when a bald eagle tried stealing a rabbit from a young red fox at San Juan Island National Historical Park. This battle went airborne - more than 20 feet at times - and the tussle was photographed from start to finish. The entire airborne battle lasted less than 8 seconds. Jennifer King reports. (KING)

Now, your tug weather--

West Entrance U.S. Waters Strait Of Juan De Fuca-  229 AM PDT Wed May 23 2018   

TODAY  W wind to 10 kt rising to 10 to 20 kt in the afternoon.  Wind waves 1 ft or less building to 1 to 3 ft in the afternoon. W  swell 7 ft at 11 seconds. Patchy fog. 

TONIGHT  W wind 10 to 20 kt becoming 5 to 15 kt after midnight.  Wind waves 1 to 3 ft. W swell 7 ft at 11 seconds.
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