Monday, October 28, 2019

10/28 Elwha, Greta Thunberg, buying WA water, rising waters, otters, shorelines, Columbia sturgeon, Growlers, climate change tools

Elwha 10/25/19 [Lindsey Howard/CWI, Lighthawk]
Environmental allies: Teen protesters, civil disobedience groups and climate scientists demand action
It may take the combined efforts of protests like the one Friday that brought teenage activist Greta Thunberg to Vancouver, increasingly dire reports, and even the Canadian election results to finally move the dial on climate action, experts predict. ”Absolutely, people are starting to pay attention,” said Kai Chan, a University of B.C. professor and the Canada Research Chair in biodiversity and ecosystem services. But from the perspective of experts like Chan, it has taken an agonizingly long time for people to heed the warnings from the United Nations and other organizations that we now have just 11 years to save the planet before it suffers irreversible damage from climate change. In May, Chan was one of the co-authors of an 1,800-page international report — the most authoritative study ever produced on the impacts of human activity on the Earth — that drew many dire conclusions, including that a million animal and plant species could be extinct within decades. Lori Culbert reports. (Vancouver Sun) See also: Read Greta Thunberg’s full speech from the Vancouver climate rally  (Vancouver Sun)

Wall Street spends millions to buy up Washington state water
Follow the water and you’ll find the money. That’s how it often works in the dusty rural corners of Washington, where a Wall Street-backed firm is staking an ambitious venture on the state’s water. Crown Columbia Water Resources since 2017 has targeted the water rights of farms on tributaries of the mighty Columbia River...Follow the water and you’ll find the money. That’s how it often works in the dusty rural corners of Washington, where a Wall Street-backed firm is staking an ambitious venture on the state’s water. Crown Columbia Water Resources since 2017 has targeted the water rights of farms on tributaries of the mighty Columbia River...Amid a changing climate, a population boom in Washington and churning development, Peterson’s client plans to buy, lease and sell water in a privately operated water market of its own creation. Crown’s activities here are unprecedented in scope for a private firm. Evan Bush reports. (Seattle Times) See also: Wall Street seeks a valuable resource from Washington state's aging farmers: their water  Evan Bush reports. (Seattle Times)

Rising waters bring tough choice: fight or flight
Fight or flight. That’s the dilemma people living at water’s edge face as a hotter climate pushes Puget Sound and nearby rivers higher. Fleeing to higher, drier ground can be wrenching, while digging in and trying to hold the waters back can be costly, if not dangerous. Neighbors of the Skagit and Stillaguamish rivers, just north of Seattle, have been tackling this 21st-century dilemma for years — though in opposite ways. John Ryan reports. (KUOW)

Whidbey Island study takes a look at area otters
Studying one of the region’s cutest and perhaps most sly critters requires binoculars, wildlife cameras and, for researcher Heide Island, containers to hold feces...Island, of Pacific University in Oregon, has been scooping up as much fresh otter poop as she can find. She’s also been collecting another otter excrement called digestive mucus. Island is committed to following around Whidbey Island otters and gathering their droppings because the cute critters can reveal insights into the health of the environment because they are sensitive to pollutants. Kimberly Cauvel reports. (Skagit Valley Herald)

Survey shows Puget Sound residents prefer natural shorelines to armored ones
Shoreline armoring not only damages the ecosystem, it may also impact our ‘sense of place’ and enjoyment of the environment, according to a 2019 report from Oregon State University. The report is based on surveys of both property owners and non-property owners in Puget Sound. More than 66% of survey respondents indicated that natural attributes were a strong part of their connection to Puget Sound’s shorelines. The report’s author, Dr. David Trimbach of Oregon State University’s Human Dimensions Lab, argues that environmentally damaging shoreline development such as seawalls and bulkheads could diminish that connection...Scientific studies have shown that shoreline armoring along Puget Sound’s beaches destroys habitat for salmon and forage fish, leads to beach erosion and lowers overall biodiversity. Approximately 30% of Puget Sound’s shorelines are considered to be armored. Jeff Rice writes. (Puget Sound Institute)

Could Columbia River sturgeon become a source of high-end caviar? The Yakama Nation is counting on it
Last December, Crafted Restaurant in Yakima served up an Instagram-ready dish of roe on a creme fraiche-dappled blini. Festive in presentation, the caviar was in keeping with the holiday season. But these were no ordinary eggs. Instead of black market Caspian Sea beluga caviar, which has been banned in the United States since 2005, guests were enjoying $80-an-ounce caviar sourced from Columbia River white sturgeon. These nutty pearls were a product of the Yakama Nation’s sturgeon hatchery, the only one to produce commercial caviar in the state that once was an epicenter of the American caviar industry. And if Donella Miller, fish biologist and manager of the Yakama White Sturgeon Management Project, has her way, the salt-cured delicacy will help offset the cost of operating the hatchery. Maintaining the Columbia’s white sturgeon fishery is necessary to providing a traditional food for Northwest tribes. But it’s also a harbinger of the overall health of the Columbia River Basin — and the people who call it home.  Kinsey Gidick reports. (Bitterroot/Crosscut)

The Navy's Growler jets bring noise to a quiet place: Olympic National Park
"THE SOUND OF FREEDOM" is a message known to all who drive past the entrance to Naval Air Station Whidbey, on Whidbey Island, but takes on a different meaning when Navy Growler jets fly over visitors enjoying the wildness and quiet which define Olympic National Park. From campers in the Hoh rain forest to Lake Quinault Lodge guests, there is growing discontent that the sound of freedom is competing with solitude and silence in a crown jewel of America's national park system. The park draws those who want to hear bugling Roosevelt Elk, not Growler jets. Joel Connely reports. (SeattlePI.Com)

Giving Schools — And Students — The Tools They Need In The Fight To Save The Planet
If you want to get students fired up about climate change, poop is a good place to start. At a conference on climate and education at the Omega Institute in Rhinebeck, N.Y., participants got to see that principle in action. A highlight of the gathering was a tour of the Omega Center for Sustainable Living, which features an ultra-modern, chemical-free wastewater treatment system. It’s a long room with stone walls and large windows that uses plants, bacteria, algae and snails to treat the wastewater from 25,000 visitors a year and return it to the local aquifer. It looks more like a botanical garden than a sewage plant...Over the years, hundreds of students — from elementary grades through graduate school — have come to see how it works, and it serves as a reminder of the importance of teaching climate change from the point of view of solutions, says Laura Weiland, the center’s director: “Unless we actually engage people and have the necessary training and outreach, the critical nature of what needs to happen in the next decade is not going to be possible.” Anya Kamenetz reports. (NPR)

Now, your tug weather--

West Entrance U.S. Waters Strait Of Juan De Fuca-  213 AM PDT Mon Oct 28 2019   
 NW wind to 10 kt becoming E 5 to 15 kt in the afternoon.  Wind waves 2 ft or less. W swell 5 ft at 17 seconds. 
 E wind 20 to 30 kt. Wind waves 3 to 5 ft. W swell 5 ft  at 15 seconds.

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