Monday, October 15, 2018

10/15 Crocus, climate, BC LNG, BC treaties, BC pipe, oil profits, BC sockeye, Kabelac culvert, Haida Gwaii rats, Princess Sophia

Naked ladies [Luc Viatour/Wikimedia]
Naked ladies Colchicum autumnal
Colchicum autumnale, commonly known as autumn crocus, meadow saffron or naked ladies, is an autumn-blooming flowering plant that resembles the true crocuses, but is a member of the Colchicaceae plant family, unlike the true crocuses which belong to the Iridaceae family. The name "naked ladies" comes from the fact that the flowers emerge from the ground long before the leaves appear. Despite the vernacular name of "meadow saffron", this plant is not the source of saffron, which is obtained from the saffron crocus, Crocus sativus – and that plant too is sometimes called "autumn crocus". (Wikipedia)

We’re going in the wrong direction,’ says SFU author of UN climate report
B.C. is moving in the wrong direction if it wants to be a leader in curbing climate change, says a Simon Fraser University professor who co-authored a dire United Nations report this week on the impacts of global warming. “We are at a critical juncture. We need rapid and unprecedented changes across all aspects of the economy and society,” said Kirsten Zickfeld, a climate science professor at SFU’s Department of Geography. Tiffany Crawford reports. (Vancouver Sun) See also: 'It's urgent emissions come down': UW researcher is lead author on stark climate report  Kristie Ebi, a UW professor of global health, likened the new climate report to a doctor following up a patient's difficult diagnosis. “If you have cancer, you need the doctor to tell you how serious your cancer is and what your options are,” she said. Evan Bush reports. (Seattle Times)

Enbridge begins building a road to pipeline explosion site in northern B.C.
Enbridge Inc. says it has begun construction of a temporary access road to the site of a natural gas pipeline explosion north of Prince George, B.C. In a news release issued Sunday the company says construction will take a few days, but it has no timeline on when the repair work will be completed. Enbridge says it has completed soil sampling and preliminary field observations in the area of the blast and found no traces of hydrocarbons in the soil.It also says field observations show that animals and plants are still active and viable around the explosion site. Enbridge says it expects the site to recovery quickly. (Canadian Press)

First Nations, federal and B.C. provincial governments sign new treaty agreement
The British Columbia government says a new agreement between a group of Indigenous people and the provincial and federal governments is consistent with the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. The treaty negotiations memorandum of understanding was signed Saturday at a ceremony in the Leq'a:mel community by the chiefs from the six First Nations of the Sto:lo Xwexwilmexw Treaty Association and ministers from the provincial and federal governments. The new approach recognizes that Indigenous rights are inherent and cannot be extinguished or surrendered, and shifts away from seeking a full and final settlement. A release from the Ministry of Indigenous Relations and Reconciliation says it builds a collaborative and predictable ongoing government-to-government relationship that can adapt to changing circumstances over time, as policies evolve or new rights are established by the courts. (Canadian Press)

NEB sets Trans Mountain hearings schedule to meet February deadline 
The National Energy Board has released a schedule that it says will allow it to reconsider its approval of the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion project in time to meet a Feb. 22 federal government deadline. The federal regulator is imposing filing deadlines starting this month, will hear oral traditional evidence by Indigenous groups in November and December, and will hear potential oral summary arguments in January. The plan to triple capacity of the existing Trans Mountain pipeline between Edmonton and Burnaby, B.C., is in limbo while Ottawa, which now owns the pipeline, attempts to fulfil a court’s requirements to consult Indigenous communities and consider the environmental impact of additional oil tankers off the coast. (Canadian Press)

Oil industry is booming, but nervous
The good times are back. Or are they? The money is rolling in once again for the international oil giants after a grim period of budget cuts and job reductions following the plunge in oil prices in 2014. The profitability of major oil companies now approaches or, by some measures, exceeds the levels before the crash.For eight of the world’s largest oil companies including, ExxonMobil, Chevron, BP and Royal Dutch Shell, combined free cash flow, a measure that tracks the money going in and out of company coffers, was $30.9 billion in 2017 — far higher than the $3.8 billion recorded in 2014, when oil prices were far higher, according to Bernstein Research. That was after paying a rich $46 billion in dividends to shareholders. Stanley Reed reports. (NY Times)

B.C. sockeye salmon return thrills onlookers despite concerns over decline
Adams River is one of the best places in B.C. to see the natural phenomenon — masses of sockeye that have turned bright red — and their return is one the largest in North America. Numbers peak every four years, with millions of fish crowding the stream beds, and 2018 is such a peak....Fisheries and Oceans Canada forecasted as many as 14 million sockeye would return to the Fraser River in 2018, but scientists warned in the summer that warmer water in B.C.'s ocean and rivers have coincided with low sockeye survival the past three years. (CBC)

Project to restore fish habitat saves Gorst couple's home
What's good for steelhead is good for the Vedin family. Along a shady ravine at the head of Sinclair Inlet, contractors began work this month to replace a skinny, busted culvert that for years blocked fish from wiggling into the upper reaches of Kabelac Creek. The same undersized culvert has been a bane to Deborah and Martin Vedin, causing erosion that destabilized their bridge across the stream — the only entry to their hillside parcel south of Highway 16. The Vedins haven't been able to drive to their house since a flood washed away part of their driveway in 2012, and they were in danger of losing access entirely to a property that's been in Deborah's family for generations. Tad Sooter reports. (Kitsap Sun)

The Rats Are Dead. Long Live the Rats
Parks Canada figured it had rats on the run. In 2013, the agency dropped poisoned pellets from helicopters across Faraday and Murchison Islands in Gwaii Haanas National Park Reserve, National Marine Conservation Area Reserve, and Haida Heritage Site on Haida Gwaii, British Columbia. The objective was to rid the side-by-side islands of invasive black rats, which were introduced to the region by ships more than a century ago and have been decimating vulnerable seabird nesting colonies ever since. The pellet drop was part of a multi-year eradication effort that saw the agency and its partners spend CAN $3.18-million between 2011 and 2015. By 2016, the Haida Nation, Parks Canada, and a variety of government and conservation groups, were celebrating their conquest over rats on these remote, rugged islands. Follow-up monitoring suggested a six percent increase in the local population of ancient murrelets—a stubby, black-and-white, federally protected seabird that was one focus of the conservation effort. But the party was short-lived. By September 2017, cameras showed that rats were once again on the islands. These were not the black rats that had been eradicated, but new invaders: bigger, more aggressive brown rats. “It was crushing news,” says Miranda Post, a spokesperson for Parks Canada. Larry Pynn reports. (Hakai Magazine)

Revisiting the Princess Sophia, the sunken 'Ship of Sorrow'
....  The SS Princess Sophia sank on Oct. 25, 1918, with estimates of the death toll ranging up to 367. Nobody on board survived, save one pet dog who swam to shore. The ship was one of four coastal liners operated by the Canadian Pacific Railway, all named for princesses. The Princess Sophia had departed Skagway, Alaska, on Oct. 23, 1918, with stops planned in Juneau, Wrangell and Ketchikan before hitting Prince Rupert, Alert Bay and eventually Vancouver. The following day at 2 a.m., about 87 kilometres south of Skagway and 74 kilometres north of Juneau, the Princess Sophia struck a reef. Slightly off course in bad weather, she was going full steam, rode up onto the rock and stuck fast. She remained stuck for 40 hours, enough time for rescue boats to arrive. But stormy conditions and high tides made it too risky to abandon ship. Rescue boat crews chose to return to port and come back the following day, the 26th, when weather was expected to improve. But in the meantime, the Princess Sophia was lifted off the reef and sank, leaving no survivors. Richard Watts reports. (Times Colonist)

Now, your tug weather--

West Entrance U.S. Waters Strait Of Juan De Fuca-  238 AM PDT Mon Oct 15 2018   


TODAY  E wind 10 to 20 kt. Wind waves 1 to 3 ft. SW swell 3 ft  at 14 seconds. 

TONIGHT  E wind 10 to 20 kt rising to 15 to 25 kt. Wind waves 2  to 4 ft. SW swell 3 ft at 14 seconds.

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