Legacy © Wild Game Fish Conservation International
The Journal of Wild Game Fish Conservation Published by volunteers at:
Wild Game Fish Conservation International Where conservation is an ethic of resource use, allocation, and protection, especially of the natural environment
Dilbit is Deadly
Toxic mix of heavy bitumen, condensate and assorted chemicals Risks to public health and safety Risks to environmental security, climate change Problematic at all stages: excavation, pipelines, rail lines, export via tankers, energy generation Impossible to clean up following expected leaks and spills Inadequate spill response infrastructure
Dilbit’s purported economic benefits do not justify societal risks
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems
Legacy Wild Game Fish Conservation International Wild Game Fish Conservation International (WGFCI): Established to advocate for wild game fish, their fragile ecosystems and the cultures and economies that rely on their robust populations. LEGACY – The Journal of Wild Game Fish Conservation: Complimentary, no-nonsense, monthly publication by conservationists for conservationists LEGACY, the WGFCI Facebook page and the WGFCI website are utilized to better equip fellow conservationists, elected officials, business owners and others regarding wild game fish, their contributions to society and the varied and complex issues impacting them and those who rely on their sustainability. LEGACY exposes impacts to wild game fish while featuring wild game fish conservation projects, fishing adventures, wildlife art, accommodations, equipment and more. Your photos and articles featuring wild game fish from around planet earth are welcome for possible inclusion in an upcoming issue of LEGACY. E-mail them with captions and credits to Jim (email@example.com). Successful wild game fish conservation efforts around planet earth will ensure existence of these precious natural resources and their ecosystems for future generations to enjoy and appreciate. This is our LEGACY.
Wild Game Fish Conservation International Founders
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems
Contents WGFCI Outreach via Legacy and Facebook ________________________________________________________ 10 Editorial Opinion _________________________________________________________________________________ 12
Impacts of Increased Tanker Traffic on Marine Mammals ________________________________________________ Chehalis River dam site: Geotech study insufficient ____________________________________________________ A Reply to Sea World’s Open Letter and an Invitation to Make a Meaningful New Year’s Resolution ________ Killer whales cruelly snared by hunters will be put on display at Russia's Sochi Winter Olympics __________
12 13 15 20
Special: _________________________________________________________________________________________ 22 Ceremony to Honor the Sacred Waters and Sacred Wild Salmon _________________________________________ Don’t believe aquaculture hype________________________________________________________________________ Canada’s proposed “dilbit” pipeline projects _____________________________________________________________ Condensate to facilitate transportation of bitumen via pipeline projects – source Wikipedia _______________
22 24 26 26
Seafood consumption: Public health risks and benefits _____________________________________________ 31
Enjoy seasonal wild Pacific salmon dinners at these fine restaurants:____________________________________ Congratulations Overwaitea Food Group: Sustainable Seafood Policy ___________________________________ PROUD TO SUPPORT WILD SALMON – Original art by Leanne Hodges __________________________________ Wild Salmon Supporters – View entire list here _________________________________________________________ Avoid most Atlantic salmon - Monterey Bay Aquarium: Seafood Watch __________________________________ Toxins in farmed salmon______________________________________________________________________________ 10 Reasons not to eat farmed salmon __________________________________________________________________ Cooke Aquaculture's Atlantic salmon "From egg to plate medicate" _____________________________________ Smoked salmon recalled amid Listeria fears ___________________________________________________________ Red alert on salmon __________________________________________________________________________________ Don’t Eat Farmed Salmon _____________________________________________________________________________ “Chinook Transition” _________________________________________________________________________________
31 32 33 34 35 37 38 39 40 42 47 48
WGFCI: protecting what needs protected __________________________________________________________ 49
Jay Inslee, Re. Transition from fossil fuels _____________________________________________________________ Gregor Robertson, Re. Kinder Morgan proposed bitumin volume increase _______________________________ James Joyner and Tim Erkel. Re. Dredging Snake River _________________________________________________ Stephen Harper, Re: Proposed Northern Gateway Pipelines _____________________________________________ Christy Clark, re. Oppose Northern Gateway pipeline project ____________________________________________ Derek Corrigan, re. Kinder Morgan proposed expansion ________________________________________________ Gerard Jalbert, re. Bitumen export moratorium _________________________________________________________ Craig Jelinek, re. removal of feedlot salmon ____________________________________________________________
49 49 50 50 51 52 52 53
Denny Heck, re. NOAA sustainable aquaculture report __________________________________________________ 53 Barak Obama, re. energy production___________________________________________________________________ 54 John Kerry, re. international trade agreements _________________________________________________________ 55 Washington State Fish and Wildlife Commission, re. Grays Harbor salmon _______________________________ 55 The Honourable Leona Aglukkaq, re. impacts of increased BC shipping __________________________________ 56 Sea Shepherd, re. Marine mammal capture _____________________________________________________________ 57
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems
Responses to WGFCI: ____________________________________________________________________________ 58 Jeff Fournier, re. Marine Harvest pesticide permit. ______________________________________________________ 58 Andrea Reimer, re. proposed Kinder Morgan pipeline expansion_________________________________________ 59 David Boulet, re. open pen salmon feedlot lease fees ___________________________________________________ 60 Patty Murray, re, Endangered Species Act _____________________________________________________________ 62 Jim Standen, re. Pesticide Use Permit (Marine Harvest) _________________________________________________ 62 Maria Cantwell, re. Endangered Species Act ____________________________________________________________ 63
Community Activism, Education and Outreach: __________________________________________________________ 64 Leave this world better than when you found it _________________________________________________________ 64 VOLUNTEERS NEEDED NOW. Help block the Enbridge Northern Gateway pipeline. _______________________ 72 Protect Washington Waters from Oil Spills _____________________________________________________________ 73 Northwest Youth Conservation and Fly Fishing Academy _______________________________________________ 74
Feds respond to Neil Young anti-oilsands tour _________________________________________________________ Protesters carry placards across stage as Stephen Harper set to speak __________________________________ Stephan Harper’s Official Unwelcoming Party – Vancouver, British Columbia _____________________________ Protesters Block Stephen Harper’s Vancouver Island Venue ____________________________________________
Whatever it takes – One step at a time _________________________________________________________________ 83 Small-town B.C. chamber slams provincial business group over proposed pipeline _______________________ 84 Kinder Morgan Proposed Pipeline Expansion __________________________________________________________ 86 Environmental groups take their fights to court ________________________________________________________ 87 Sign the Declaration to Save our Shore ________________________________________________________________ 90 Evict Fish Farms from the Salish Sea __________________________________________________________________ 91 Pledge Not to Sell Genetically Modified Salmon at Costco _______________________________________________ 93 Idle No More – One year old and healthy _______________________________________________________________ 94 Idle No More anniversary: December 22, 2013 __________________________________________________________ 95 Opposition mounts to hazardous waste facility on Fraser River in Chilliwack _____________________________ 96 Gagged by B.C. court, fish-farm foe takes fight against industry to Scotland______________________________ 98 Congratulations!! Ricky’s ALL DAY GRILL: Sustainable Seafood Champ ________________________________ 101
75 77 80 81
Ricky’s All Day Grill: Recognized by Atlantic Salmon Boycott Campaign ________________________________ 102 Ricky’s event follow-up ______________________________________________________________________________ 103 Tatsu Japanese Bistro: Sorry, No Farmed Salmon _____________________________________________________ 104 Mehdi interviewed Alexandra Morton about salmon ____________________________________________________ 105 Wild Salmon Warrior Radio with Jay Peachy – Tuesday Mornings_______________________________________ 106
Open pen salmon and trout feedlots ______________________________________________________________ 107
Sustainability is impossible until companies admit environmental cost _________________________________ FISH FARMS POSE BIOSECURITY RISK, SAYS NEW STUDY ___________________________________________ 2013 worst ISA year in Norway since 2009 ____________________________________________________________ Why Farmed Fish Need More Veggies In Their Diet ____________________________________________________ Tasmania's salmon trade casts deadly net ____________________________________________________________ Abandoned salmon feedlot pens – Butter Cove, Newfoundland _________________________________________
107 109 111 113 116 120
Gill Diseases in Seawater-Farmed Salmon Have Multiple Causes, Lead to Substantial Losses ____________ 121 Many west coast salmon farms ‘in sensitive areas’ ____________________________________________________ 123 Dal tainted by fish-farm grant ________________________________________________________________________ 125 Expanded biosecurity for farmed salmon _____________________________________________________________ 127 AQUACULTURE INDUSTRY WITH blinders toward the abyss ___________________________________________ 128 Nearly 70,000 farmed salmon on the run in Bømlo _____________________________________________________ 131 The farmed salmon and its critics ____________________________________________________________________ 132 Skivebom of Kviststad _______________________________________________________________________________ 133 Pesticides: farmed salmon passes between the cracks ________________________________________________ 135 Escaped farmed salmon and trout in Chile… __________________________________________________________ 138 Sea scum in Jordan Bay worries residents ____________________________________________________________ 139 Oban Times: “Mull Fish Farm Sea Lice Problem Revealed” _____________________________________________ 141
Climate Change _________________________________________________________________________________ 143 13 major clean energy breakthroughs of 2013 _________________________________________________________ 143 Majority at Olympia climate hearing make case for less fossil fuel ______________________________________ 147 Power Plants, Refineries Top Carbon Pollution ________________________________________________________ 149
Energy production : Oil, Coal, Hydropower, Natural Gas, Solar, Wind _______________________________ 151 The Sound of Silence - Exxon Valdez Oil Spill _________________________________________________________ The Nature of Things - Black Wave: The Legacy of the Exxon Valdez ____________________________________ New federal study: Oilsands bitumen sinks when mixed _______________________________________________ What A Year: 45 Fossil Fuel Disasters The Industry Doesn’t Want You To Know About ___________________ Stricter oil-by-rail rules needed after another explosion: critics _________________________________________ For oil trains crossing Oregon, Washington, state oversight gaps raise questions in wake of accidents ___ North Dakota blast prompts review of oil train safety___________________________________________________ New Brunswick train that derailed may have included controversial DOT-111 rail cars____________________ Alberta, BC plan for oil-by-rail in case pipelines fail ____________________________________________________ Petroleum – Drilled, Refined, Tar Sands, Fracked ________________________________________________________ Tar-sands mining in Canada is unleashing mercury pollution ___________________________________________
153 154 155 157 159 162 164 167 169 172 172
Kinder Morgan files formal application for Trans Mountain pipeline expansion ___________________________ 174 Tanker traffic would soar under proposed Canadian pipeline ___________________________________________ 176 Memo to the NDP: Trans Mountain is Bigger, Riskier than Northern Gateway ____________________________ 178 Seven times the oil tanker traffic in the Strait? _________________________________________________________ 181 Graphic: A detailed look at the proposed Northern Gateway pipeline ____________________________________ 184 Federal review panel gives green light to Northern Gateway pipeline ____________________________________ 187
Oil tankers, threatened humpbacks on collision course on B.C.’s north coast due to pipeline approval ____ Northern Gateway is a war that Ottawa can’t win ______________________________________________________ Stephen Hume: Pipeline debate shaping up as propaganda war ________________________________________ Scientists urge EU action on tar sands - letter _________________________________________________________ Northern Gateway? Get on with it ____________________________________________________________________ Researchers find 7,300-sq-mile ring of mercury around tar sands in Canada _____________________________
191 193 195 197 199 202
Oil Company Looks To Great Lakes As Shipping Demand Booms ______________________________________ 204 Pipeline giant buys US shipping fleet _________________________________________________________________ 206 No Surprise: Panel finds in favour of Enbridge ________________________________________________________ 208 David Suzuki slams federal review panel as 'rubber stamp' and Enbridge as having 'no credibility' ________ 211 More massive tar mats from BP oil spill discovered on Louisiana beaches ______________________________ 217 Coal __________________________________________________________________________________________________ 220 Vancity dissatisfied with Fraser Surrey Docks environmental review of proposed coal facility ____________ 220 Port-ordered environmental assessment of Surrey coal project panned _________________________________ 222 CN sues Westshore Terminals over three accidents involving coal trains________________________________ 224 Wall Street Giant Backs Away From Washington Coal Export Project ___________________________________ 225 Government Declares State of Emergency After West Virginia Chemical Spill ____________________________ 227 Coal spills into Burnaby, B.C. creek after CP train derailment ___________________________________________ 229 Hydropower and water retention ________________________________________________________________________ Guest opinion: Columbia River plan fails to protect salmon ____________________________________________ HOLY HYDRO SKYKOMISH SUNSET? ________________________________________________________________ Iowa lake and dam to be restored after 2010 flood _____________________________________________________
231 231 233 235
Boardman River dam project enters $13 million phase _________________________________________________ Otter's water: Governor aims to build dams ___________________________________________________________ Guest: How we can use nature to fend off flooding in Puget Sound _____________________________________ Hydropower Generation via proposed Chehalis River dam (Washington state) ___________________________ Folsom Dam may cut outflows in delicate balancing act ________________________________________________ Liquefied Natural Gas __________________________________________________________________________________ David Suzuki on Christy Clark's LNG plans: 'Be serious' _______________________________________________ Pressure for quick LNG approvals may trigger backlash _______________________________________________ Major LNG contract awarded ____________________________________________________________________________ BC LNG bigger than Tar Sands? Export licences face Cabinet review ___________________________________ Inspector General Finds EPA Justified in Intervening to Protect Drinking Water from Fracking ____________ Solar _________________________________________________________________________________________________
237 239 241 243 245 247 247 249 252 253 257 259
Solar Tunnel: Antwerp, Belgium ______________________________________________________________________ 260 India Building Solar Canals To Produce Power & Slow Water Loss ______________________________________ 261 Massive solar plan for Minnesota wins bid over gas ___________________________________________________ 262
Forest Management _____________________________________________________________________________ 264 Genetically Engineered Atlantic Salmon: aka FrankenSalmon ______________________________________ 266 Facility growing experimental genetically engineered salmon lacks permits _____________________________ 266 AquAdvantage® Fish ________________________________________________________________________________ 269
Government action/inaction______________________________________________________________________ 270
I have to stop saying “How stupid can you be” ________________________________________________________ Washington Fish and Wildlife Commission – Grays Harbor Salmon Management Plan____________________ Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) _________________________________________________ Trans Pacific Partnership ____________________________________________________________________________
270 272 273 275
TPP - Wikileaks has released another bombshell ______________________________________________________ 276 Open Letter to Conservatives about the Canada-China Foreign Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement (FIPA) ___________________________________________________________________________________ 277 N.L.’s destroyed salmon tab: $33M ___________________________________________________________________ 279 How the Harper Government Committed a Knowledge Massacre________________________________________ 282 Secret Memo Casts Doubt on Feds' Claims for Science Library Closures ________________________________ 284 Silence of the Labs __________________________________________________________________________________ 288 U.S. environmental group puts Canadian fisheries on its target list _____________________________________ 289 Stephen Harper promises pipeline safety as climate protesters pierce PM’s security _____________________ 291 State to Pursue Equity Partnership in Gasline _________________________________________________________ 294 Mexican Judge Throws out Monsanto Appeal to Confirm GM Maize Ban _________________________________ 296 Giving Thanks for the End of Catfish Stuffing _________________________________________________________ 298
Harper government cutting more than $100 million related to protection of water ________________________ City of Vancouver, BC: Approved motion regarding proposed Kinder Morgan expansion _________________ Alberta’s Tar Sands Will Now Be Regulated By Fossil Fuels-Funded Group______________________________ 75 Alberta environment regulators now paid by oil industry ____________________________________________
300 302 303 305
Port City Secures Six-Month Moratorium on OilSands Exports__________________________________________ 308 Newfoundland park, world heritage site spared from oil fracking________________________________________ 310
“Greenwashing” (aka: Bovine Excrement) ________________________________________________________ 312
National Energy Board quietly given authority to assess pipeline damage to fish ________________________ Mitigation makes probability of oil spill very low, according to risk analysis done for Kinder Morgan ______ Ottawa hires ad firm for $22 million oilsands campaign ________________________________________________ There is no throne so high that it cannot be shaken by laughter from beneath. ___________________________ Kirkland Signature Atlantic Salmon FAQ's ____________________________________________________________ Norwegian feedlot salmon detract from “Scottish Quality” _____________________________________________ NOAA: Coastal ocean aquaculture can be environmentally sustainable _________________________________ Farmed fish line raises questions ____________________________________________________________________
312 314 319 322 323 324 325 326
Mining __________________________________________________________________________________________ 328 B.C. energy and mines minister in Ottawa to discuss proposed New Prosperity mine ____________________ 328 US woman sues Canadian mining titan Teck over toxins, disease _______________________________________ 330 Northern Dynasty Has One Foot in the Grave __________________________________________________________ 333
Wild fish management ___________________________________________________________________________ 335 Petitioning The Scottish Government: Remove Commercial Nets _______________________________________ 335 Overfishing doesn’t just shrink fish populations—they often don’t recover afterwards ___________________ 336
Longline fishermen demand end to plan to protect waters around Cocos Island _________________________ Fishin’ Gone: Proposed Fish Protection Could Shut Down Popular Fishing Spot _________________________ Motorized boats stir up problems for BC’s salmon rivers _______________________________________________ Acid rock drainage from Okanagan highway threatens ‘world’s richest’ wild trout stream ________________
338 341 343 346
Conservation-minded businesses – please support these fine businesses __________________________ 350 Steelhead Girls _____________________________________________________________________________________ 350
Riverman Guide Service – since 1969 _________________________________________________________________ 351 Martin Mc Gowan’s: A Kerry Fishing Guide ____________________________________________________________ 352 Ricky’s All Day Grill _________________________________________________________________________________ 353 Just Sushi – World’s First 100% Sustainable Sushi Restaurant _________________________________________ 354 Homestead Trophy Lodge & Kenai Peninsula Fishing __________________________________________________ Maxwell Steelhead Guides ___________________________________________________________________________ Anissa Reed Designs ________________________________________________________________________________ Cabo Sails __________________________________________________________________________________________
355 356 357 358
Fishing the Rogue Guide Service _____________________________________________________________________ 359
Attention Conservation-minded Business Owners _________________________________________________ 361 WGFCI endorsed conservation organizations: _____________________________________________________ 361 Featured Artists: ________________________________________________________________________________ 362 Sara Stevenson Fine Art _____________________________________________________________________________ 363 Dan Wallace: Commissioned engraving – strict attention to detail ______________________________________ 364 Diane Michelin - Fly Fishing Fine Art: Another yet untitled masterpiece inspired by a lifelong passion for nature and fly fishing _____________________________________________________________________________ 365 Jeannie Williams Wallen: “Breaking Waves” __________________________________________________________ 366 Layla Zoe: “Our Native Land” ________________________________________________________________________ 367
Conservationist Extraordinaire – Walking the Talk _________________________________________________ 368 Sabra Woodworth, British Columbia __________________________________________________________________ 368
Featured Fishing Photos, “Funnies” and Not so Funny: ____________________________________________ 369
Bryanna Zimmerman (Steelhead Girls) with a dandy, B-run steelhead ___________________________________ David Tejedor Royo: Extremadura Spain with a Spanish speaking Pike!!! ________________________________ Gašper Konkolič - Fly Fishing Guiding Slovenia _______________________________________________________ Kyle McClelland: Michigan winter steelhead ___________________________________________________________ April Vokey: Windy Argentina ________________________________________________________________________ Kazumi Takizawa: Japanese Grouper _________________________________________________________________ Alsea River – Nobody hurt – Boat was recovered – Lessoned learned? __________________________________
369 370 371 372 373 374 382
Recommended Reading _________________________________________________________________________ 384 Alexandra Morton: “Listening to Whales”
Watch orcas up close HERE ________________________________ 384
Terry Wiest: Float Fishing for Salmon and Steelhead __________________________________________________ 385
Video Library – conservation of wild game fish ____________________________________________________ 386 Final Thoughts: _________________________________________________________________________________ 387 Truth _______________________________________________________________________________________________ 387
Legacy Forward The February 2014 issue of Legacy marks twenty eight consecutive months of our web-based publication, the no-holds-barred, watchdog journal published by Wild Game Fish Conservation International. Legacy is published each month to expose risks to the future of wild game fish and their ecosystems around planet earth to our growing audience. Legacy is also utilized to promote the many benefits of healthy populations of wild game fish. Please share this uniquely comprehensive publication with others far and wide as it includes something of interest and importance for everyone. Our hope is that those who read Legacy will come to understand that what is good for wild game fish is also good for humans. Similarly, what is bad for our planet’s wild game fish is really bad for humans! A growing number of recreational anglers and others around planet earth are passionate about conserving wild game fish and their continued availability for this and future generations to enjoy and appreciate. Additionally, growing numbers of consumers and retailers are paying close attention to the impacts each of us have on global resources through our daily activities and purchases. We continue to urge our readers to speak out passionately and to demonstrate peacefully for wild game fish and their ecosystems; ecosystems that we are but one small component of. As recreational fishermen, conservation of wild game fish for future generations is our passion. Publishing “Legacy” each month is our self imposed responsibility to help ensure the future of these precious gifts that have been entrusted for safekeeping to our generation.
James E. Wilcox Wild Game Fish Conservation International
WGFCI Outreach via Legacy and Facebook
4,500+ WGFCI Faceb The January issue of Legacy has been read in these countries
While spending a few hundred hours preparing Legacy each month, it sometimes seems as though we are like Little Red Hen with her unending warning: “The sky is falling! The sky is falling!” As with the duckling above, Wild Game Fish Conservation International is not Little Red Hen, nor is the sky truly falling. Our planet is fortunate to have those who care deeply about her health and are willing to do whatever it takes to conserve her limited resources for future generations. There is no free lunch; there is no Plan B! We’re all in this together! Take ownership of issues within your grasp! Do your part! What are you waiting for? The sky to fall???
Impacts of Increased Tanker Traffic on Marine Mammals Jim Wilcox, Wild Game Fish Conservation International As has been reported in Legacy and in other media outlets around planet earth, supertanker traffic will increase significantly over the next few years if plans across North America and elsewhere come to fruition. In Canada alone, significantly increased numbers of tankers will be used to transport bitumen, condensate, liquefied natural gas, coal and a cocktail mix of toxic chemicals from Canada to terminals along North America’s west coast and to the ever increasing Asian market. The proposed Kinder Morgan pipeline project to triple the volume of bitumen from Alberta’s tar sands fields to Fraser River terminals in Burnaby and Vancouver will increase oil tankers from eighty per year to at least four hundred – these are one-way trips, so their risks are in fact doubled. At least two hundred Very Large Crude Carrier class tankers will travel annually through the often treacherous Douglas Channel to Kitimat to receive their Asia-bound cargo of bitumen, also piped from Alberta’s tar sands. In addition to the crude oil tankers visiting Kitimat, there will be hundreds of tankers calling on Kitimat to load up on British Columbia’s highly-touted, Liquefied Natural Gas (fracked) – and then there are the tankers from Asia carrying condensate that will be off loaded in Kitimat for transport via pipes to Alberta to allow the bitumen to flow more freely through the pipes back to Kitimat. Of course, these tankers will only be one component of the increasingly busy marine traffic routes along North America’s west coast. Increased imports from around the world call on this coastline as do a growing number of cruise ships. Each of these hundreds of ships and their support vessels (tugboats, Coast Guard, etc) rely on radar to identify possible obstructions in front of them. Similarly, they rely on sonar to avoid obstructions under them to ensure safe passage. Clearly, these marine traffic routes will become very busy given the expected increase in shipping traffic. These marine routes are shared with many species of marine mammals – all of which rely on their sophisticated, internal sonar systems to communicate with each other, to forage and to navigate. As has been widely reported, sonar used on ships negatively impact marine mammals’ ability to effectively communicate, forage and navigate – often leading to disastrous outcomes for these animals. The US Navy has been found guilty of this and now finds itself in court defending the use of sonar – one can only imagine the tremendous impacts directly associated with sonar used to safely guide these supertankers in often challenging conditions through such fragile environments such as the Strait of Juan de Fuca, Georgia Strait and Douglas Channel on protected Orcas and other marine mammals. Of course there are other risks associated with the expected growth in supertanker traffic, including catastrophic spills of bitumen and other products – a modern nightmare in the making!
Chehalis River dam site: Geotech study insufficient Vince Panesko, Lewis County property owner Regarding the second of two reports issued by the geological company which performed a very superficial examination of the Pe Ell dam site, including my property. This report admits that no actual soil sampling or drilling was done. Since the Flood Authority consists of politicians, not technical scientists, nobody on the Flood Authority understood what this report said. It said you need a lot of geological testing…..meaning drilling to obtain soil samples, and testing of rock formations…..before you can reach any conclusion about the proposed location as being suitable for a dam. I am extremely troubled that a political body such as the Flood Authority has passed over this technical report without responding to its recommendations for subsurface geological studies. If you and I were going to build a dam, the very first step we would perform is to conduct subsurface investigations to determine if there was any solid rock in the area, and what it would cost to remove all the dirt and debris above the solid rock. The geologists have found bed rock on the floor of the valley because it is visible at locations along the bed of the Chehalis River. Nobody has confirmed how far the bed rock extends away from the river. If we could see bed rock extending up from the river to 300 feet high on each side to form a canyon with the sides made of high density bed rock, I would not be having this discussion. The reality is that nobody has mapped the high density bed rock on either side of the proposed dam site. Note that no geotech work has been performed since 2009, and none is included within the 2 million dollar study scheduled in 2013-2014 on dam feasibility. No further geotech work will be considered until mid-2015 at the earliest, if then. This report clarifies that the geotech work performed to date is superficial and involves no subsurface exploration; therefore, there is a lot of actual geotech work required before siting and designing a dam. I was amused at how this report tiptoes around the major technical issues for which there is a paucity of information. Key issues:
Need for core drilling to confirm depth of soil over bedrock…estimated to be up to 60 feet at east end of dam. Need to confirm ancient landslides and determine need for excavation (not in cost estimates) of over-burden. Seepage through the porous McIntosh Formation located at each end of the dam. This study noted the presence of springs appearing in the McIntosh Formation during events of high precipitation. Not a stable formation against which to position a dam. The McIntosh Formation is a soft shale easily cracked. Nobody in their right mind would locate one end of a dam against soft shale that is already fractured with water seeping through it. That would be an invitation to a dam failure.
Need to determine the availability of suitable material to build a dam (extremely important for cost estimate, but left out.) Source of high strength volcanic rock is in question. (Cannot use soft rock to protect dam surface due to extreme weathering). Landslides into reservoir of dam…and effect on operating costs.
This report clarifies the need to confirm the absence of technical fatal flaws, and to establish whether or not there are economic fatal flaws. The people on the Flood Authority are not aware of the difference between technical fatal flaws and economic fatal flaws. What good is a technical report if nobody pays attention to it?
Reply to Sea World’s Open Letter and an Invitation to Make a Meaningful New Year’s Resolution December 21, 2013
Friday Harbor, WA - The documentary “Blackfish” has left a desperate SeaWorld in its wake, struggling to stay afloat in a sea of bad press and criticism from the public. As performer after performer (eight total, so far) cancels their scheduled show for SeaWorld’s upcoming “Bands, Brews & BBQ” concert series due to concerns raised by the film, SeaWorld has fought back with a list of responses that they have called an open letter from SeaWorld’s “animal advocates.” While their representatives have declined to share how much money was spent putting this response out there, it is almost certain that SeaWorld spent thousands of dollars getting the letter published in eight major U.S. newspapers. If you have read the letter, you might be finding it hard to separate fact from fiction as it is filled with SeaWorld’s spin on the captive marine mammal industry. Sea Shepherd would like to present a few counterpoints to SeaWorld’s arguments that will hopefully clear up any confusion.
“SeaWorld does not capture killer whales in the wild. Due to the groundbreaking success of our research in marine mammal reproduction, we haven’t collected a killer whale from the wild in 35 years.” While SeaWorld admits that they have two orcas in their “care” who were captured in the wild, they leave out the violent and traumatic captures that these orcas endured. Footage of a notoriously brutal orca capture in Penn Cove, a capture which tore apart a family of orcas and left some dead, can be seen in “Blackfish.” Those responsible for the capture even sank the bodies of the dead whales in an effort to hide their deaths. Tilikum’s capture took place off the coast of Iceland in 1983, when he was only 2. He was sent to SeaLand of the Pacific, before enduring a stressful transport once again to his current prison, SeaWorld Orlando. Many of SeaWorld’s orcas were, indeed, born in captivity. Many of them are the offspring of Tilikum, who is used as SeaWorld’s breeding machine. SeaWorld’s marine mammals are often inbred, offspring of two mated members of the same family, resulting in a range of genetic abnormalities and mutations. That is the truth of SeaWorld’s “groundbreaking success” in marine mammal reproduction. The letter also conveniently leaves out the fact that SeaWorld plans to take some of the 18 wildcaught beluga whales that the Georgia Aquarium is currently fighting so hard to get their hands on. Some of the belugas would be split between SeaWorld Orlando, San Antonio, and San Diego as well as other captive facilities. Why does SeaWorld support the captures of members of a healthy population of beluga whales from the wild, while claiming publicly that their orcas don’t come from the ocean?
“We do not separate killer whale moms and calves. SeaWorld recognizes the important bond between mother and calf. On the rare occasion that a mother killer whale cannot care for the calf herself, we have successfully hand raised and reintroduced the calf. Whales are only moved to maintain a healthy social structure.”
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems As you can see in “Blackfish,” SeaWorld has in fact removed calves from their mother’s side and transported them to their other parks. Just as any mother would mourn for her child, the orcas have cried out long-range vocals looking for their young, taken by SeaWorld. Even if this is old footage, it is quite possible that SeaWorld continues this practice. They continue to breed marine mammals, including orcas. Some are transferred between facilities to breed or to perform. In the wild, orcas live in large pods, and in some populations, calves stay with their mother for their entire life. Regardless, the way to “maintain a healthy social structure” for orcas, animals who live in matriarchal pods, is never to separate a mother from her calf.
“We give our animals restaurant-quality fish, exercise, veterinary care, mental stimulation, and the company of other members of their species.” The “restaurant-quality fish” being served to these orcas refers to thawed dead fish, contrary to their natural hunting behavior in the wild. These fish are filled with antibiotics and vitamins to combat the effects of captivity on these often stressed, sick whales. Wild orcas get moisture from the fish that they consume, but the frozen fish provided at SeaWorld have lost most of the moisture they once contained. So, SeaWorld feeds its orcas massive amounts of gelatin each day for hydration. While some of these orcas may be kept with members of their species, these artificial pods are not the families that they would live with in the wild. Tilikum often remains alone, and now spends most of his time floating listlessly at the surface of his tank. He is used as a “stud” for SeaWorld’s continuous supply of captive and in-bred orcas (perversely, marine park staff masturbate males in order to collect their semen, which is used to impregnate females), and occasionally he is forced to provide the “big splash” at the end of SeaWorld’s performances. The in-breeding has led to unhealthy offspring and many babies have been stillborn.
"SeaWorld’s killer whales’ life equivalent with those in the wild.”
This is a lie that SeaWorld has been feeding to the public for years. They claim “no one knows for sure how long orcas live,” a claim that has been refuted by marine biologists and orca researchers who have spent the greater part of their careers studying the lives and natural behaviors of orcas in the wild.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems SeaWorld’s claim that the life spans of captive and wild orcas are comparable is shattered by the real numbers. In the wild, the average life span for males is 30 years and 50 years for females. Males can reach an estimated maximum age of 60-70 years old, and females 80-90 years old. While SeaWorld points out “five of our animals are older than 30, and one of our whales is close to 50,” this is highly unusual for orcas in captivity, including those at SeaWorld. Many die before those ages, and some even before reaching maturity.
“The killer whales in our care benefit those in the wild. We work with universities, governmental agencies and NGOs to increase the body of knowledge about and the understanding of killer whales — from their anatomy and reproductive biology to their auditory abilities.” SeaWorld’s “research” on their captive orcas benefitting wild orcas is a stretch, to say the least. Captive orcas are mere shells of their wild counterparts, unable even to engage in the most basic of their natural behaviors or live in their natural social groupings. The collapsed dorsal fin that you see in captive orcas is something that SeaWorld claims is also common in the wild, but in fact is rarely seen in wild orcas. It is a sign of stress, illness, injury or other conditions.
“SeaWorld is a world leader in animal rescue. The millions of people who visit our parks each year make possible SeaWorld’s worldrenowned work in rescue, rehabilitation and release…We have rescued more than 23,000 animals with the goal of treating and returning them to the wild.” While SeaWorld does rescue, rehabilitate and release ocean wildlife, this statement included in their letter is disgracefully misleading. The animals released by SeaWorld are most often manatees, sea turtles, and other animals who cannot be used as “performers” in their shows. Dolphins and whales and other animals such as sea lions rescued by SeaWorld who can be forced to perform tricks for food are kept and used as performers.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems We have yet to hear conclusive findings on the actual success of SeaWorld’s rescue and release program. They do not follow up and report on the survival of the animals who have been released from their care. In addition, according to its 2011-12 Annual Report, SeaWorld has given only $9 million dollars over the last decade toward conservation efforts. That means for every 100 dollars in revenue they bring in, they donate approximately 1 cent toward saving the animals in the wild whose captive counterparts they are exploiting. That's .0001 percent of their income going to help animals in the wild. I think that might be the most telling point of all — that, in fact, SeaWorld is really nothing more than a money-making enterprise. The bottom line is that SeaWorld is part of the massive machine that is the captive marine mammal industry, an industry willing to spew whatever lies it can in order to keep you spending your money at their parks. This industry is inextricably linked not only to the deaths of the animals in their tanks, but to the deaths of marine mammals brutally slaughtered in Taiji, Japan where dolphin trainers work side-by-side with dolphin killers to hand-pick those who are suitable for captivity – those who are “prettiest” and without visible scars. SeaWorld does not want you to know what “Blackfish” made so clear, and what our volunteer Cove Guardians continue to show on the ground in Taiji every day: captivity kills. As that message spreads, a new generation is leading the way for a future of freedom for marine life. Children have begun to speak out and say that they will never spend another moment at SeaWorld or other marine parks that hold orcas and other dolphins and whales in captivity. Students have even gotten regular school trips to SeaWorld canceled. Children may have small voices, but they also have powerful voices because they represent change. This may be the hardest hit to SeaWorld yet, as these future adults will usher in the end of support for the captive industry and a shift toward protecting marine mammals where they belong — in the wild. Sea Shepherd has a call to action for our many enthusiastic and dedicated young supporters. You are a huge part of spreading Sea Shepherd’s message, including exposing the truth behind SeaWorld and other marine parks. We would like all Sea Shepherds — whether young in age or simply young at heart — to send us a picture with a sign stating your New Year’s Resolution — to never attend SeaWorld or other marine parks again. You can even send us a video and tell us why this is your resolution for 2014 and beyond. You can send photos or links to your videos to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Editorial Comment: Wild Game Fish Conservation International is in full support of Sea Shepherd’s ongoing efforts to protect planet earth’s wild marine mammals from senseless, greed-driven capture and slaughter. These magnificent animals are far too beneficial to healthy wild ecosystems to inhumanely condemn them to instant death or a lifetime of slavery.
whales cruelly snared by hunters will be put on display at Russia's Sochi Winter Olympics The mammals, which can grow up to 22ft long and swim 100 miles a day, are set to be kept in a “small concrete tank” after a 4,614-mile flight from the east of Russia
January 12, 2014 Two killer whales cruelly snared by hunters are to be displayed at the Sochi Winter Olympics. The mammals , which can grow up to 22ft long and swim 100 miles a day, are set to be kept in a “small concrete tank” after a 4,614-mile flight from the far east of Russia. Animal protection advisers said the move to exhibit the orcas – not really whales but members of the dolphin family – was cruel and a “callous attempt to cash in on the Olympics”. Campaigners say the two killer whales, along with six others, are being held “in small pools” near Vladivostok. A source told the Sunday People: “This is so wrong. The Sochi Dolphinarium is shamelessly trying to cash in on the Olympics by exploiting these creatures who should be roaming free in the wild. “It goes against everything the Olympics should be about. It’s sickening.” Campaigners say transporting orcas causes them stress, also that keeping them in captivity shortens their life and can make them aggressive. The documentary Blackfish told how an orca called Tilikum turned “psychotic” as a result of his conditions and is thought to have killed three people at SeaWorld in Orlando, Florida. A spokesman for Whale and Dolphin Conservation said: “It’s a sad day for Russia, a sad thing for the Olympics and a very sad situation for two orcas who now will be flying across seven time zones to spend the rest of their lives in captivity.
“Whales and dolphins are intelligent. In captivity they live impoverished lives .” The Winter Olympics begin in the Black Sea city on February 7. The Games have cost £30billion and have been dogged by corruption and environmental scandals. Campaigners have also called for protests against Russia’s oppressive anti-gay laws.
Ceremony to Honor the Sacred Waters and Sacred Wild Salmon Eddie Gardner January 1, 2014
Sacred offering to the river with prayers to the water spirits, and the spirit of wild salmon, thanking Creator for these life-giving gifts! Sacred songs are sung to celebrate what we still have and need to protect! (Photo: Wayne Froese) On January 1, 2014, a wellattended ceremony was held at the Vedder Bridge to Honor the Sacred Waters and Sacred Wild Salmon. The people acknowledged the unceded territory of the Tselxweliqw people who occupied this territory since time immemorial.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems The Stó:lõ (The People of the River) consider wild salmon as their relatives and have a unique connection to the Xáxe Stó:lõ Shxw’aylexw Sacred Rivers of Life. Eddie reminded the people about the chlorination of water that took place in Chilliwack, and the bottling of huge amounts of water that was drawn from the Fraser Valley's aquifers. Eddie acknowledged Water Wealth for the wonderful work they did to raise the associated issues. Through this, people in Chilliwack are beginning to appreciate that we cannot take clean water for granted, and that water is a finite life-sustaining, valuable resource that needs to be protected. Global warming caused by human activity was also brought to the forefront. Eddie encouraged the people to support the work of Water Wealth, Pipe UP, Chilliwack-Vedder River Clean Up Society, Living Oceans, David Suzuki Foundation, Forest Ethics, Western Wilderness Society, Save The Fraser Declaration, the work of Alexandra Morton and many other movements to protect Mother Earth. Xpáyelhp, the Tree of Life of the Stó:lõ people, was used in this ceremony. Cedar boughs were put on a cedar box, on which a piece of wild salmon was placed. The cedar box was then passed around to the people in a circle for each person to pray for the protection of the sacred waters and sacred wild salmon.
Photo: Craig Hill, The Valley Voice
After the prayers were said, the box was taken to the river by Stan and was ceremoniously offered to the river in honor of the sacred waters and to wild salmon that swim through the rivers, making their way to the big ocean and back up the rivers to the headwaters where they spawn and renew the sacred cycle of life. The drummers and singers sang sacred songs as Stan made the offering. After this, the people got back into the circle and everyone got brushed with the sacred cedar boughs as a blessing for their participation in the ceremony. The Women Warrior’s song was led by Dionne McGrath to end the ceremony to honor Mother Earth and all the life-givers. We were most honored to have Mia Nissen and Thomas Chan from Burnaby join us at this ceremony. That same morning, Mia Nissen ended her 7-day holiday fast to raise awareness about the threats imposed to the waters and land by massive projects involving open-net cage fish farms, fracking for gas, Enbridge and Kinder Morgan pipelines, and plans to increase Supertankers carrying toxic bitumen on the coastal waters of BC. We are grateful to Mia for her courage and willingness to demonstrate that we all can, and need to make sacrifices to protect the waters, the land and the air, or future generations will inherit unbearable living conditions. This ceremony was supported by thousands of people who care for protecting the elemental, lifesustaining forces and that, in 2014, we the people in BC will work as a powerful collective force to protect the environment upon which we depend. Our gratitude also goes to Craig Hill of The Valley Voice who covered this ceremony to begin 2014 in a very auspicious way!
Don’t believe aquaculture hype Inka Milewski Commentary, Telegraph Journal January 3, 2014 If you believe what the salmon aquaculture industry is saying, they are poised to feed the hungry of the world, close the global protein gap, employ legions of workers and save coastal communities from economic oblivion. Nowhere in their feel-good message do they tell the public where the hungry and protein starved of the world live or the likelihood that salmon jerky and fillets will fill their bellies.
It’s unlikely salmon will be feeding the 25-35 per cent of people living in Chad, Liberal, Angola, Ethiopia, Zambia, Namibia or Lesotho who, according to the United Nation World Food Program, are undernourished. Sub-Saharan Africa has the highest prevalence of hunger (24.8 per cent of the population) and Asia has the largest number of hungry people (over 500 million). Farmed salmon, haddock, cod or halibut will not be on their menu anytime soon. According to the 2013 Statistical Yearbook of the UN Food and Agriculture Organization, the world’s hungry (and well-fed) get their protein from plants and animals not fish. Globally, only 17 per cent of the population’s average per capita intake of animal protein comes from fish. China alone produced more than 60 per cent of global aquaculture production (mostly seaweeds and freshwater fish), while Asia as a whole accounted for about 90 per cent. Furthermore, global aquaculture production is dominated by species that are raised in inland tanks, channels or ponds and feed low on the food chain such as carp, tilapias and catfish. As for creating legions of workers, employment statistics show that increased technological efficiencies have resulted in increased production levels without comparable increases in employment. Statistics Canada and DFO report that in 1990, 1,000 people in Atlantic Canada were employed in aquaculture and they produced 15,000 mt of product. In 2008, production had quadrupled (67,000 mt), but the workforce increased by only two and half times to 2,600 workers. The world’s leader in salmon farming, Norway, has increased its production by six times over the past 20 years but its workforce has remained at 1990 levels. The salmon aquaculture industry says new legislation will help to make all their promises come true.
The industry does need legislation. It needs federal regulations like those imposed on effluent from Canada’s pulp and paper and metal mining industries and municipal sewage facilities. There are no federal or provincial regulations to control the impacts of aquaculture.
The open net pen salmon aquaculture industry is in deep trouble in Atlantic Canada. Disease outbreaks in 2013 resulted in the destruction of over a million fish. The industry is desperate to find a poison that will kill the sea lice infesting their farms.
Poor environmental performance at some farms means longer wait times before production can begin again. Escaped fish continue to be a problem and, as storms intensify due to climate change, the likelihood of storm damage and escaped fish will only get bigger. A new federal aquaculture act is not going to fix any of these issues. The simplest way to address all the issues plaguing the industry is to move fish farming onto land.
Critics of this method say land-based operations are not economic. Money can be, and is being, made growing fish in land-based facilities. The profits are not as great as growing them at sea where the cost of disposing of waste and compensating for disease is paid by the environment and the public. Fish farming does have a place in the economic mix of communities but it is on land where, as with other industrial operations, the real and total cost of production is paid by the industry and not by the public, environment and traditional fisheries. Inka Milewski is a science advisor with the Conservation Council of New Brunswick
Canada’s proposed “dilbit” pipeline projects
to facilitate transportation of bitumen via pipeline projects – source Wikipedia
Why dilute bitumen? Bitumen and heavy oils are often produced from remote deposits such as the Athabasca oil sands in Alberta, Canada and the Orinoco tar sands in Venezuela. Before 1980, most produced bitumen was transported by truck, but trucking is seasonally restricted and relatively inefficient and expensive compared to pipeline transport. However, bitumen in its undiluted state is too viscous and dense to be transported by pipeline. To create a fluid capable of transportation by pipeline, bitumen must be mixed with a fluid that has much lower viscosity and will keep bitumen from precipitating out of the mixture. By 1985 and demonstrating the effectiveness of dilbit, Alberta Energy Company was operating dual pipelines to transport diluent from Edmonton to Cold Lake and dilbit from Cold Lake to Edmonton. Dilbit is now also transported by rail. How is bitumen diluted? The most common diluent used to dilute bitumen is natural gas condensate (NGC), especially the naphtha component. Due to insufficient quantity of natural gas condensate in Alberta, bitumen shippers also use refined naptha and synthetic crude oil (SCO) as diluent, and import a considerable amount from the U.S. Although SCO requires a higher volume percentage to achieve the same viscosity, at least one study found that SCO provides better blend stability than NGC. Shippers dilute bitumen before shipment in order to meet viscosity and density requirements found in common carrier pipeline tariff rules. A National Energy Board study assumed a standard dilbit containing 33% condensate (resulting in product with "21.5 °API and sulphur content of 3.3 percent") and synbit containing 50% SCO. By selecting different diluent types and blend ratios, bitumen shippers attempt to lower component costs, increase blend value, and maintain pipeline transportability. The blend ratio may consist of 25 to 55% diluent by volume, depending on characteristics of the bitumen and diluent, pipeline specifications, operating conditions, and refinery requirements. Froth treatment which removes heavy constituents rather than adding lighter ones is another method. What happens to the dilbit? Diluent can be removed from dilbit by distillation and reused. Alternatively, the entire dilbit can be refined. Dilbit and synbit are typically processed by refineries as heavy or medium crudes, respectively. As dilbit contains hydrocarbons at extreme ends of the viscosity range, the material can be more difficult to process than typical crude oil. Separation and oil spill risks Unlike conventional crude, dilbit floats briefly in water but then sinks as the light components evaporate, leaving the heavy components behind. This makes cleaning up a dilbit spill much more difficult than a conventional oil spill, particularly if dredging is considered too ecologically damaging. During the Kalamazoo River oil spill, the heavier components sank to the bottom of the water column, making cleanup difficult. Cleanup of the spill is still underway three years after the event, and officials at the Michigan Department of Natural Resources’ Fishery Division expect that it will "be many more years before the agency can measure the full impact on fish and other animals’ reproductive cycles."
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems In 2013, opening on the Keystone XL pipeline proposal, the EPA recommended to the State Department that pipelines that carry dilbit (such as the proposed Keystone XL) should no longer be treated just like pipelines that carry any other oil. "We have learned from the 2010 Enbridge spill of oil sands crude in Michigan that spills of diluted bitumen (dilbit) may require different response actions or equipment from response actions for conventional oil spills. These spills can also have different impacts than spills of conventional oil. […] We recommend that the Final EIS [environmental impact statement ] more clearly acknowledge that in the event of a spill to water, it is possible that large portions of dilbit will sink and that submerged oil significantly changes spill response and impacts. We also recommend that the Final EIS include means to address the additional risks of releases that may be greater for spills of dilbit than other crudes. For example, in the Enbridge spill, the local health department issued voluntary evacuation notices based on the level of benzene measured in the air." Alternatives to diluent Heated pipelines Constructing upgraders closer to production References: 1. Alberta Oil Sands Bitumen Valuation Methodology (pdf), 2008-9995, Calgary, Alberta: Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers, Dec 2008 2. Canada's Oil Sands: Opportunities and Challenges to 2015 (Energy Market Assessment). Calgary, Alberta: National Energy Board. May 2004. pp. 115–118. ISBN 0-662-36880-0. Retrieved 14 Mar 2012. Condensate: "A mixture comprised mainly of pentanes and heavier hydrocarbons recovered as a liquid from field separators, scrubbers or other gathering facilities or at the inlet of a natural gas processing plant before the gas is processed." Dilbit: "Bitumen that has been reduced in viscosity through addition of a diluent (or solvent) such as condensate or naphtha." Diluent: "Any lighter hydrocarbon, usually pentanes plus, added to heavy crude oil or bitumen in order to facilitate its transport on crude oil pipelines." Synbit: "A blend of bitumen and synthetic crude oil that has similar properties to medium sour crude." "Synthetic crude oil is a mixture of hydrocarbons generally similar to light sweet crude oil, derived by upgrading crude bitumen or heavy crude oil." 3. a b Walker, Ian C. (1998), Marketing Challenges for Canadian Bitumen (pdf), Tulsa, OK: International Centre for Heavy Hydrocarbons, p. 2 4. Harrison, Lynda (September 2011). "Riding the Rails, Oil companies climb aboard potential alternative to pipelines". Oil & Gas Inquirer (Calgary, Alberta: JuneWarren-Nickle's Energy Group). Retrieved 14 Mar 2012. 5. "Altex model". Altex Energy Ltd. Retrieved June 16, 2012. "On December 2, 2009, Purvin and Gertz reported that Alberta produces about 80,000 bbls/d of natural gasoline (primarily pentane and hexane) and another 65,000 bbls/d of Naphtha from its indigenous natural gas. These hydrocarbons have been added to bitumen (typically a 10-12 API product) to produce a pipelinable product called dilbit (19-21 API). In recent years the indigenous supply of natural gasoline not been sufficient to meet the demand. To meet bitumen producer’s requirements, about 40,000 bbls/d of natural gasoline has been imported into Alberta, primarily using rail road tank cars. The National Energy Board (“NEB”) tracks these volumes and in a recent
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems publication shows that it expects the demand for natural gasoline to grow by about 27,000 bpd each year for the next ten years." 6. Ross, Elsie (13 Sep 2012). "New Diluent Sources Needed For Forecast Growth In Bitumen". The Daily Oil Bulletin (Junewarren-Nickle’s Energy Group). "Oilsands operators have been importing diluent since about 2004 as the required volumes of pentanes plus and condensate have significantly outpaced domestic production capacity, says the CERI study. In 2010, an estimated 260,000 bbls per day of diluent was required while total Canadian domestic production was about 160,000 bbls per day, indicating that close to 40 per cent (100,000 bbls per day) of the required diluent needed to be imported, says the study." 7. Rahimi, Parviz; Alem, Teclemariam (10 Feb 2010). "Crude Oil Compatibility and Diluent Evaluation for Pipelining" (pdf). Joint CCQTA/COQA meeting (New Orleans). Devon, Alberta: National Centre for Upgrading Technology. Retrieved 18 Jun 2011. 8. a b Canada's Oil Sands: Opportunities and Challenges to 2015 (Energy Market Assessment). Calgary, Alberta: National Energy Board. May 2004. ISBN 0-662-36880-0. Retrieved 14 Mar 2012. 9. Crude Oil Forecast, Markets and Pipeline Expansions (PDF), Calgary, Alberta: Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers, June 2007, p. 5, retrieved 16 June 2012, "The DilBit blend is typically made up of three parts bitumen and one part condensate. SynBit blend is comprised of roughly fifty percent synthetic and fifty percent bitumen." 10. Segato, Randy, Quality Guidelines for Western Canadian Condensate (PDF), Calgary, Alberta: Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers, p. 6, retrieved 16 June 2012, "Bitumen and Heavy Crude Oil must be diluted to meet pipeline viscosity and density specifications. Two blend type conventions upgraded light synthetic blends (SYNBIT, ~50/50 ratio) or heavy and bitumen diluted with condensate (DILBIT, ~25/75 ratio)" 11. Crandall, G. R. (17 Dec 2004), Phase II―Refined Products and Petrochemicals from Bitumen, R. A. McKetta, G. A. Houlton, J. D. Wright, O. Malbec, Purvin & Gertz, Inc., p. 52, retrieved 16 June 2012, "We assumed that the bitumen delivered to the Alberta upgrader would be diluted with C5+ condensate with a blend ratio of 26% C5+ and 74% bitumen needed to achieve the pipeline viscosity specification of 350 cst and 940 kg/m3 density." Athabasca bitumen has a density of 8.4 API and 4.8 weight % sulfur. SCO has a density of 35 API and 0.1 weight % sulfur. 12. Jeff Lewis (November 8, 2011). "SNC-Lavalin to build $650 million froth treatment plant: Client not disclosed, but reported to be CNRL". Alberta Oil. Retrieved April 28, 2013. 13. "Kalamazoo River Spill Yields Record Fine", Living on Earth, July 6, 2012. Lisa Song, a reporter for InsideClimate News, interviewed by Bruce Gellerman. Retrieved 2013-01-01. 14. Elizabeth Shogren (August 16, 2012). "When This Oil Spills, It's 'A Whole New Monster'". NPR All Things Considered. Retrieved June 1, 2013. "Tar sands oil has to be diluted to make it liquid enough to flow through a pipeline. But once it's back out in the environment, the chemicals that liquefied it evaporate. That leaves the heavy stuff behind." 15. Smith, Lindsey (Thu July 25, 2013). "3 years and nearly $1 billion later, cleanup of Kalamazoo River oil spill continues". Michigan Radio: The Environment Report. Retrieved 15 September 2013. 16. "EPA Comment Letter - US Environmental Protection Agency". April 22, 2013. Retrieved 19 September 2013.
Enbridge Northern Gateway Pipelines VIDEO
TransCanada Keystone XL
(and Enbridge Expansion Route)
Kinder Morgan Expansion
Enbridge Flow Reversal to Maine
Seafood consumption: Public health risks and benefits
Enjoy seasonal wild Pacific salmon dinners at these fine restaurants:
Congratulations Overwaitea Food Group: Sustainable Seafood Policy
PROUD TO SUPPORT WILD SALMON – Original art by Leanne Hodges
Editorial Comment: When making your next dining reservations for yourself, you and your loved one or a party, please be sure to look first at the restaurants that do not offer open pen feedlot salmon on their menu. This is a simple way that we can thank these businesses for their significant dedication and commitment to our iconic wild Pacific salmon.
Wild Salmon Supporters – View entire list here
Eddie Gardner: BAD CHOICE! So called “Fresh Farmed Atlantic Salmon Steak Tip" is very fatty and this absorbs high concentrations of PCBs. For your health and for the well being of the marine habitat, do not purchase this product.
Nikki Lamarre: They couldn't pay me to eat that!
Avoid most Atlantic salmon - Monterey Bay Aquarium: Seafood Watch
FARMED ATLANTIC SALMON There are many environmental problems related to farming Atlantic salmon, which means most are ranked "Avoid." However, efforts to reduce some of these environmental impacts have been successful.
Consumer Note The majority of salmon farmed today are Atlantic salmon. A small quantity of Pacific salmon Chinook and coho - is also farmed. Salmon is known as sake when prepared for sushi.
Environmental Defense Fund has issued a health advisory for farmed salmon due to high levels of PCBs. Summary One of the biggest concerns is the amount of food required to raise farmed salmon. It generally takes three pounds of wild fish to grow one pound of farmed salmon. The environmental impact of salmon farming is still increasing as global production continues to rise. Most salmon are farmed in open pens and cages in coastal waters. Waste from these farms is released directly into the ocean. Parasites and diseases from farmed salmon can spread to wild fish swimming near the farms and escaping farmed salmon can harm wild populations. As a result, most salmon farmed in ocean net pens get an "Avoid" ranking. However, some salmon farmers are making changes to improve their practices. Look for wild-caught salmon, clearly labeled U.S.-farmed freshwater coho salmon or Verlasso® salmon.
For now, "Avoid" most farmed Atlantic salmon. Recipe Alternatives Seafood Watch recommends wild-caught salmon from Alaska, California, Oregon, Washington and British Columbia, as well as U.S. coho (silver) salmon farmed in inland tanks and Verlasso® salmon.
Editorial Comment: You can do your part:
Frequent markets and restaurants that refuse to offer Atlantic salmon to their customers Support businesses that conserve sustainable populations of wild game fish
Toxins in farmed salmon
10 Reasons not to eat farmed salmon BAD FOR YOU, BAD FOR THE OCEAN WARNING: HIGH FAT CONTENT IN FARMED SALMON (WHITE STREAKS) CONTAINS TOXINS JANUARY 7, 2014
1. Salmon farmers never shovel their manure; they just let it fall through the nets. Think kitty litter box that never gets changed. Thousands of tons of feces and other waste on the seafloor around the sites that is never removed. 2. 600,000 Atlantic salmon swimming in a soup of mucus and excrement breeds pathogen mutations that enter the ocean and the supermarkets. 3. A US scientist studying toxins in farmed salmon told the media , "One should avoid farmed salmon like the plague." 4. Farmed salmon are colored pink to imitate wild salmon. Producers use the Salmo Fan to pick what color they want the fish to be. The colorant is added to the feed. 5. In April 2013, Norway got the European Union to allow 10xs more Endosulphan in farmed salmon feed. This is a pesticide banned in many parts of the world because it is so dangerous to human health. 6. If farmed salmon feed contains pig by-products, is smoked farmed salmon
Kosher? 7. Seals, sea lions and birds become trapped and drown in salmon farm nets. 8. Farmed salmon cannot feed the world because they use more fish than they produce. Farm salmon eat pellets made of fish, grains, chicken by-products and oils. They contribute to fishing pressure driving wild stocks towards extinction. 9. Wild salmon have gone into decline everywhere salmon farms operate. This damages coastal economies and life in our coastal oceans. 10. Norwegian doctors warn mothers not to eat farmed salmon because the
high levels of toxins in farmed salmon are known to be damaging to the developing brains in babies. Dr. Anne-Lise Bjørke Monsen risked her career to bring us this news. Toxicologist Claudette Bethune was fired by Norwegian government for trying to warn the public about high cadmium levels. Since so many people eat farmed salmon hoping it will benefit their health, it is important to check out what these women have to say.
Cooke Aquaculture's Atlantic salmon "From egg to plate medicate" Watch, Listen, Learn HERE
Smoked salmon recalled amid Listeria fears Food Safety Authority of Ireland says move on Clarke’s brand product ‘precautionary’ December 20, 2013 Smoked salmon products sold by a leading fish producer have been recalled after the presence of Listeria was detected in certain batches. The Food Safety Authority of Ireland (FSAI) issued the recall notice on batches of farmed oak smoked salmon with Clarke’s Fish Exports label as “a precautionary measure”. Affected batches have use-by dates ranging from December 19th to January 8th next year. Clarke’s Organic Farmed Smoked Salmon is not affected by this recall while the farmed salmon with a use by date of 11/01/14 has also been given the all clear. The affected smoked salmon was supplied to distributors, online customers and retail shops both in Ireland and across Europe. A spokesman for the Co Mayo company said it was committed to the highest standards of hygiene and quality. He said the company was working with the authorities to ensure an efficent recall of the affected products.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems Food business operators who have bought the affected smoked salmon have been asked to remove it from sale and clearly display a point of sale notice informing customers not to eat it.
Consumers have been told not to eat the implicated product and they can return it to the point of purchase for a full refund. Listeriosis is serious and can even be life threatening. Specific segments of the population would be deemed at particular risk including pregnant women, the elderly and people with impaired immune functions.
Claudette Bethune "Since 1989, FDA has stuck to what amounts to a zero-tolerance policy for any detectable level of Listeria in food. By contrast, the European Union tolerates what it says are safe levels – anything less than 100 colony-forming units (CFU) of the bug per gram. It likely takes greater concentrations of the bacterium to constitute an infectious dose, according to Rasco. Most people don’t get sick when exposed to Listeria, which typically causes a bout of uncomfortable diarrhea. Anyone with a healthy immune system can usually ward off any serious illness. But if the bacteria get into the bloodstream, they can spread throughout the body and cause listeriosis, a disease Dr. Tom Frieden, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), once called “a terrible infection.” Difficult to detect or cure, listeriosis may start with a fever or stiff neck and then progress to confusion and convulsions, encephalitis and meningitis. Nearly everyone who gets invasive listeriosis requires hospitalization and a weekslong course of intravenous antibiotics. Odds are that the disease will kill one out of every five victims, giving it the highest mortality rate of foodborne pathogens. "http://www.foodsafetynews.com/.../listeria-in-smoked.../...
Red alert on salmon Original translated via Google Translate December 22, 2013 Reviews of bad weather in the Norwegian fjords. Dissemination in early November, on France 2, a report by the program "Special Envoy", putting into question bluntly Norwegian salmon has caused a stir on the side of the Arctic Circle. Even if the attack is not new, the chosen, not far from Christmas time creates discomfort among market players. Called "secret world, opaque", the aquaculture sector was hardly to his advantage in the report of the public channel. Similarly salmon, considered "as the most toxic food in the world." The journalist had, indeed, chosen as a guide to navigate the cold waters of fjords, an environmental activist, Kurt Oddekalv, association Green Warriors of Norway, fighting against intensive aquaculture. Images taken at distance from the boat show employees with high pressure spraying of pesticides on fish ponds filled. Then underwater vistas reveal funds fjords destroyed by the accumulation of fish feces and treatment products. Finally, the researchers explain cocktail of PCBs, dioxins and other toxic substances, salmon, fatty fish stores. And especially if fed with flour small fish caught in the Baltic polluted. SERIOUS DOUBTS ON FISH FARM NORWEGIAN This trip chilling at home salmon has not failed to rekindle fears of French food consumers. And to cast serious doubts on the Norwegian farmed fish. Ramon Mac Crohon, CEO of Caviar Kaspia famous home gourmets Sea instead of the Madeleine in products Paris , readily admits: "For our clients ask us many questions about Norwegian salmon. "
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems To respond to questions from customers, vendors have been back a sheet of argument developed by Norge, the center of seafood from Norway . This organization to promote and lobby funded by industrial aquaculture and fisheries has, in fact, immediately set up against-fires. Advertising campaigns to boast expertise Norwegian professionals. Statement posted on its website to provide answers to various defendants. But also organizing a press trip "transparency", which has just attended a team of France 2, to give a different story. His report was published in the newspaper 20 hours, Monday, December 16. It is true that issues of importance to Norway. Aquaculture and fisheries are the second source of income in the country after the oil . They weighed in 2012, € 6.6 billion. The export of salmon is alone, 3.8 billion euros. In the space of thirty years, Norway has participated in the explosion of this lucrative market. Almost nonexistent in the early 1980s, he has surpassed the 2 million tonnes of salmon produced in fish farms around the world. Norway still holds nearly 60%. This rapid development has given rise to industrial-sized players. The first of them is none other than the world's leading salmon, Marine Harvest , which calls itself "supplier of protein." The company, little known to the general public has yet contributed, even if she would have gone well, an event, he highly publicized: the recent revolt of the "red caps". The announcement of the closure of two of its production sites in Britain , one near Carhaix, has angered his employees, but also one of the leaders of the movement, Christian Troadec, mayor of the town Finistère. The scheduled end of the two plants, in spring 2014, considered less productive than their Polish counterparts, should result in 400 job losses. With its farms in Norway, Scotland, the Faroe Islands, Chile or Canada , Marine Harvest posted in 2012 a turnover of 15.569 billion Norwegian kroner (€ 1.85 billion). It brings in its wake many Norwegian competitors. Like his main challenger, Leroy Seafood but also Grieg Seafood, Norway Royal Salmon or SalMar. The sting also comes from the Faroe Islands, with Bakkafrost. All these company s are listed on the Stock Exchange of Oslo. PLEASE TO ALL THAT FISH While industrializing the production of salmon hatchery to cutting, the companies have democratized its consumption by forging strong links with major retailers. It seems far away, the time when the salmon was a special dish reserved for festive tables. In France, in particular, the food was totally unmarked, thanks to the fresh food section. . The point that Hexagon is now the first customer of Norwegian aquaculture farms "Salmon has become the most consumed by the French aquatic product," says Dominique Defrance, Managing fisheries sector and aquaculture FranceAgrimer, explains: " It is a product that has been very well conditioned. It is cut, standardized, easy to cook and it has no edges. " It is also easily accessible, as present in most food stores, whether in the form of steaks, fillets, pavers, entirety. Smoked salmon is not immune to movement."Sales of smoked salmon increased from 6 000 to 20 000 tonnes in twenty years and are less focused on the Christmas season," says Jacques Trottier, CEO of Labeyrie.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems In its consumer study shows FranceAgrimer. It appeals to all fish, beyond the divisions, both children and adults, as workers to executives, as the urban rustics. Difficult to find such a consensus. "In our study, when we ask respondents whereby they could change , they talk a little cod, but especially poultry or p orc "says Defrance. PRODUCTION SCALE INDUSTRIAL And finally, between the chicken, pork and salmon, similarities abound. Although the salmon was done with a time delay, the livestock are moved from small-scale to industrial scale. The goal: provide abundant food at low cost to the greatest number. The downside: health problems or pollution caused by the high concentration of animals in a confined space, facing the most intensive farms.
Chile has had bitter experience. The "other salmon country" largest provider in the U.S. market, even if it weighs two times less than its biggest competitor in the Northern Hemisphere, has gone through an unprecedented crisis. The first symptoms appeared in 2007. In Chilean fjords, the fish began to be affected by outbreaks of ISA virus (infectious salmon anemia). This virus, fatal and contagious, which had already infected other farming areas in the world, has progressively decimated flocks. To the point that production, divided by three, hit bottom in 2010. Since the traps are filled again. And production should even exceed , in 2013, its precrisis. Nevertheless, the scars have not disappeared in the accounts of Chilean companies. Three of the major players in this market, Australis, and AquaChile Camanchaca are still in the red. Conversely, Multiexport Foods and Invermar start out the head of the water. "Even if it is an industrial market is a very difficult market. These are biological products subject to disease and weather hazards. If the water is too cold, the fish growth slows. Conversely, in summer, growth is strong and farms arrive within permitted density. Must shoot under penalty, "says François Perrone, market manager at Fish Pool, a market specialized term, a subsidiary of the Oslo Stock Exchange, based in Bergen. The vagaries of production, while all lights are green consumption, tend to makeup the price.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems This was the case for the Chilean crisis, then the courts have relaxed. But since the end of 2012, the tension is very strong. The price of the futures market, Fish Pool, soaring. Salmon from 3 kg to 6 kg, which was trading at around 25 NOK in autumn 2012, grazes in December 2013 50 crowns. The onset of fever is due to less availability of fish in the first half of 2013.Especially in Norway, where the cold waters and the presence of sea lice have slowed growth. "There is also an increase in demand for Russia and the countries of the East, with the development of supermarket chains " , says Perrone. HEALTH AUTHORITIES ADVISE MODERATION This course meets the increased salmon producers. Net income of Marine Harvest, much higher, reaching 146 million euros in the first nine months of 2013.But manufacturers who only turn the fish, as manufacturers of smoked salmon, suffer. A number of French SMEs are thus found strangled. The company Delpeyrat, a subsidiary of Maïsadour cooperative, known for its foie gras, took the opportunity to diversify the salmon market. She was first taken in late 2012, the SAUMONERIE St. Ironwood Brioude (Haute-Loire), in liquidation. Then she took hold in September 2013 of Ledun Fishermen 's Iceland in Cany-Barville (Seine-Maritime), also in liquidation. Delpeyrat also wished to place on the market fresh fish, including salmon, trout and shrimp, putting his hand on two entities Norwegian Norway Seafoods, located Castets (Landes) and Boulogne-sur-Mer (Pas -de- Calais ). Delpeyrat This places direct competition with his great rival, Labeyrie, property cooperative Lur Berri. It claims the leading position in the French market smoked salmon, whose value is estimated at € 540 million in 2012. It owns 25%. "We expect that the salmon is more expensive in 2014," predicts Frederic Oriol, Director General Delpeyrat, who said to have managed to do spend a price increase of 15% to 20% on these products this year, thanks Delpeyrat the brand. Is this the price effect? The questioning of salmon? Or a combination of both? In any case, sales of salmon flanchent in France for several months. In November, according to figures from Kantar World panel, they fell by 25% in volume compared to the same months of 2012 for fresh and 10.8% smoked. In the first eleven months of 2013, the respective decreases were 19% and 6%. Because health authorities now recommend moderation. In France, the National Agency for Food Safety Food (handles) issued its opinion in July. "We recommendeating fish twice a week and not "at least" twice as we reported previously which once, no more oily fish. Beyond the nutritional benefits, such as prevention of cardiovascular risk, do not compensate for uncertainties in the toxicological risks, "says Jean-Luc Volatier, management of the risk assessment of the handles. "It is not aquaculture in general is concerned. It is thanks to her that wild salmon still exist. But consumers should demand quality products, less fat, ask accounts on how the salmon are reared and fed and be willing to pay , "says Patrick Martin, director of the Conservatory of wild salmon.
Feedlot Atlantic Salmon
Don’t Eat Farmed Salmon Watch and Listen to Alexandra Morton and Don Staniford HERE
“Chinook Transition” Leanne Hodges original – oil on canvas – 3’ X 4’ Asking price: $2,500 – significant portion of proceeds will support Alexandra Morton’s research See more of Leanne’s amazing art at West Coast Wild Contribute to Alexandra’s ongoing research HERE
WGFCI: protecting what needs protected
Jay Inslee, Re. Transition from fossil fuels Governor, Washington state Until Washington state is committed to being the EVERGREEN STATE by conserving power, moving to alternative power generation (solar and wind) and refusing to enable coal and oil exports from our ports, there is little that can be done to effectively reduce Washington's contribution to increasing risks associated with climate change. Long overdue sacrifices now by Washington state citizens and businesses will result in significant benefits to public health, our environment and our economy..
Gregor Robertson, Re. Kinder Morgan proposed bitumin volume increase Mayor Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada We at Wild Game Fish Conservation International, on behalf of our associates around planet earth, respectfully urge you to strongly oppose the ill-advised and irresponsible proposal by Kinder Morgan to significantly increase the volume of bitumen (mixture of heavy oil, condensate and assorted chemicals) to be piped across British Columbia to export terminals sited at Burnaby and Vancouver. The Alberta Tar Sands project including its transportation infrastructure has proven to be an unsustainable environmental disaster and an embarassment to Canadians who care deeply about Canada's natural beauty and her bounty of life giving and life supporting natural resources.
Your courageous leadership as Vancouver's duly elected officials is needed to protect Vancouver citizens from dangerous scenarios such as those expected to occur with expanded export of this dangerous product through your world-class port located in your world-class city. You have the opportunity to demonstrate your influence as world class city that truly cares about our shared world by focusing your resources on renewable resources and away from obsolete technologies that will lead to the demise of our beloved planet.
James Joyner and Tim Erkel. Re. Dredging Snake River U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Regulatory Division Wild Game Fish Conservation International and our associates around planet earth oppose allowing the Ports of Clarkston, WA and Lewiston, ID to dredge the Columbia River shipping channel without a completed environmental review or economic analysis. Clearly the Corps’ draft sediment management plan is so seriously flawed the agency felt compelled to delay its release by a year. The Corps' draft plan poses significant threats to endangered wild salmon and steelhead and the clean water they require. Until these concerns are addressed in a final environmental impact statement and a Record of Decision is signed, dredging shall not proceed. Not only is dredging damaging to salmon and their habitat, it is an enormous cost to taxpayers. The Corps estimates that dredging the lower Snake will cost taxpayers $55 million. Further dredging near the ports is paid for by special taxes levied on local residents. Taxpayer dollars should not be spent on dredging not guided by sound planning. With barge traffic declining more than 50 percent in the past decade, it’s past time for a full objective cost-benefit analysis of the waterway. In the Corps final environmental impact statement, removal of the four lower Snake River dams should be considered as a long-term cost-effective and environmentally beneficial option for addressing the sediment problem.
Stephen Harper, Re: Proposed Northern Gateway Pipelines Prime Minister, Canada Wild Game Fish Conservation International, on behalf of our associates around planet earth respectfully request that you and your administration oppose the proposed Northern Gateway pipeline project as it will place public health, wild ecosystems. cultures, communities and economies in harm’s way. The leaks and spills of bitumen and condensate from theses pipelines and the tankers that will carry these highly toxic materials have proven to be expensive and nearly impossible to clean up. Stephen Harper
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems The land and streams the pipelines will cross are home to Canada's Indigenous People and to an amazing variety of life giving plants, animals and fish - the very essence of Canada's heritage, and legacy if conserved. Canada's uniquely productive coastal waters and their inhabitants are similarly fragile and deserve ongoing conservation - adding hundreds of tankers carrying oil, condensate, coal and natural gas to already busy shipping lanes in these often unsettled waters is only asking for trouble catastrophic wrecks will occur. We respectfully request, given the many risks, that you decline Enbridge's irresponsible Northern Gateway Pipeline project.
Christy Clark, re. Oppose Northern Gateway pipeline project Premier British Columbia, Canada Wild Game Fish Conservation International and our associates around planet earth respectfully request that you and your administration oppose the proposed Northern Gateway bitumen and condensate pipeline project linking Alberta's tar sands (an embarrassing, black eye to all Canadians) with the fragile ecosystems within Douglas Channel and along British Columbia's pristine west coast. To allow this project to put British Columbia's wild ecosystems, cultures, communities and economies in harm's way would be irresponsible and unethical as it will destroy much of what is beautiful and good about majestic British Columbia and her amazing people.
The marine mammals along British Columbia's west coast and throughout Douglas Channel will not tolerate this increased shipping traffic and its reliance on sonar - as it will interfere with their internal sonar used for communication, navigation and foraging. Of course, expected heavy oil and condensate spills will be devastating to British Columbia's unique marine life and all that rely on its health. Your courageous leadership in opposing the proposed Northern Gateway project is required to ensure the protection of what is good and beautiful in British Columbia, Premier Clark. We are counting on you to do the right thing for this and future generations.
Derek Corrigan, re. Kinder Morgan proposed expansion Mayor City of Burnaby, British Columbia, Canada Wild Game Fish Conservation International, on behalf of our associates in Burnaby, across British Columbia, Canada, North America and around planet earth, we respectfully urge you to formally oppose Kinder Morgan's proposed expansion that will include increases in pipelines and tankers, both of which are expected to contribute to irreversible risks to public health, wild ecosystems, cultures, communities and economies. The risks to the City of Burnaby, her people and her bounty of natural resources due to increased volumes of Alberta Tar Sands heavy oil, mixed with condensate and chemicals must be avoided through your courageous and responsible leadership.
The world is watching and waiting for your opposition to Kinder Morgan's proposed expansion that would, if approved, put the City of Burnaby directly in harm's way.
Gerard Jalbert, re. Bitumen export moratorium Mayor South Portland, Maine Wild Game Fish Conservation International, on behalf of our associates around planet earth, commends you and the South Portland Council for your courageous leadership in implementing a temporary moratorium on exporting problematic bitumen originating in the tar sands of Alberta. We respectfully encourage you and city councilors to continue your difficult battle to implement a permanent ban on exporting this dangerous product from an American port.
Craig Jelinek, re. removal of feedlot salmon Chief Executive Officer and President Costco Wild Game Fish Conservation Interantional, on behalf of our associates around planet earth, respectully requests that Costco:
removes Atlantic salmon from your stores. pledge to not market genetically engineered salmon once approved for human consumption by the US Craig Jelinek FDA These science-based actions by Costco reflect twenty-first century efforts by leading retailers to protect public health and our precious envirnment while offering their customers the safest, most beneficial products for their money. For Costco to not to participate in these modern day marketing practices is unthinkable, given Costco’s Pacific Northwest beginnings and corporate home.
Denny Heck, re. NOAA sustainable aquaculture report US Congress (Washington state, 10th Legislative District) cc’d to US Senators Cantwell and Murray Thank you for meeting with Wild Game Fish Conservation International to discuss concerns and risks associated with the expanding, and very dangerous open pen salmon feedlot industry. You are most likely aware that NOAA published "Coastal ocean aquaculture can be environmentally sustainable" this month: http://www.noaanews.noaa.gov/stories2013/20131218_a quaculture.html This federally funded report is subtitled: "Little to no effects on coastal ocean environment seen with proper safeguards, planning"
With all due respect, Representative Heck, those aware of the direct risks associated with the open pen salmon feedlot industry to public health, wild ecosystems, cultures, communities and economies are absolutely frustrated and fed up with government funded green washing of known dirty industries such as the government-enabled, greed-driven open pen salmon feedlot industry. Enough is enough. Our oceans and all that rely on their health are far too important for this ongoing blatant disrespect and increasing abuse.
Legacy â€“ February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 â€“ Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems Additionally, it's very odd that NOAA, an American government agency, is responsible in part to protect wild marine life AND responsible for promoting and expanding the incredibly dangerous open pen salmon feedlot industry. Coexistence of robust populations of wild Pacific salmon AND a thriving open pen salmon feedlot industry is not achievable Your courageous leadership as my elected Representative in Congress is needed now more than ever to remove open pen salmon feedlots from wild salmon migration routes in Washington marine waters and to work with your counterparts in British Columbia to do the same in their marine waters, as Washington-origin salmon are impacted by open pen salmon feedlots sited in British Columbia, Canada.
ď ś Barak Obama, re. energy production President, United States of America Many in the United States of America are concerned about the short term and long term risks associated with North America's energy production. Certainly, it's wise to move from dependence on foreign energy to self reliance.
There are significant risks to public health and environmental safety by simply adopting outdated technologies and fuels to accomplish this shift in strategy. As it stands now, North America has significant volumes of coal, natural gas, crude oil, bitumen and condensate. We also have life sustaining air, water (fresh and marine), soil, farmed and ranched crops, and a wide variety of fish and wildlife. Other countries around the planet along with North American corporations are investing heavily in the extraction and transportation of these North American energy resources. This is a tremendous conflict that must be resolved in the very near future as North American citizens and our way of life will not survive the unregulated raping and pillaging of our blessed continent to meet the unquenchable thirst of others for our oil, natural gas, etc. In Canada, the Alberta tar sands operations are destroying legendary landscapes, public health, wild ecosystems in order to satisfy China's thirst for this oil that costs more to produce than it is worth. This project is producing more dirty, heavy oil that has no way to get to port as all proposed pipeline expansions and shipping lanes have been, and will continue to be opposed. The shipping traffic in and out of key British Columbia terminals will be overwhelmed with supertankers attempting to maneuver in difficult conditions along challenging routes. There will be wrecks that will result in significant spills that Canada and the USA will not be able to clean. This international coastline is far too valuable to risk its loss to the ongoing greed. Your courageous leadership is required to bring sanity to energy production that will benefit Americans, Canadians and others around planet earth.
John Kerry, re. international trade agreements Secretary of State United States of America Cc’d to members of US Congress (Cantwell, Murray, Heck) Given the growing concerns around planet earth regarding the impacts of human development on our limited natural resources, it should not be surprising to you in your leadership position that the efforts to develop new trade agreements causes one to pause, to say the very least. The Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) between the United States and European nations, the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) between the USA and other Pacific rim countries and the Foreign Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement (FIPA) between Canada and China will each have significant consequences on each of our lives and lifestyles. Guaranteed investments by foreign-owned corporations in other countries is like playing with fire and must be avoided. This is asking for unimaginable, unaffordable ramifications
These “behind closed door” trade agreements are especially worrisome given the global thirst for oil, natural gas and coal as well as concerns associated with breathable air, productive lands and lifesustaining water, along with a sustainable supply of healthy food for a growing global population. Certainly, a growing economy is desired. This has been promoted countless times. It has taken different forms, but rarely do all citizens see the benefits of purported growth. All too often any benefits are creamed off the top, leaving little to nothing for those not in upper economic classes. This is pathetic in this day and age. It will no longer be tolerated as it is truly wrong in all regards. The direction these “world leaders” are going in is absolutely wrong and must be stopped. Your courageous leadership to abort these misguided, greed-driven trade agreements will be truly appreciated.
Washington State Fish and Wildlife Commission, re. Grays Harbor salmon The collaborative efforts to develop an effective and enforceable Grays Harbor Salmon Management Policy are truly appreciated. The unique opportunities to develop Grays Harbor and its tributaries into a working model for other working coastal communities is huge. Having robust populations of wild salmon and trout is a key to this worthy social, environmental and economic goal.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems The Fish Committee recommendations for inclusion in the Commission's draft Grays Harbor Salmon Management Policy are important initial considerations to recover the vitality of Grays Harbor and its many tributaries. Among these recommendations:
Conservation and recovery of wild salmon
Meet wild salmon escapement – WDFW staff accountability
Limit access by commercial fleet (4, 3)
Comprehensive economic analysis
Upriver catch opportunities
Commercial license buybacks
Reduce out of basin (Alaska, Canada) impact (48%).
The time is right to recover Washington's wild salmon and trout. Grays Harbor, with its undammed tributaries, is an excellent candidate to successfully recover these magnificent, life sustaining fish.
The Honourable Leona Aglukkaq, re. impacts of increased BC shipping Minister of the Environment Canada Wild Game Fish Conservation International is deeply concerned regarding the strategy to significantly increase the number of commercial vessels planned to ply the waters of Canada's west coast and the international waters between Canada and the United States. Vessel trips to be increased include tankers (crude oil, diluted bitumen, condensate and liquefied natural gas), coal barges and freighters and cruise ships - each will be accompanied by support vessels as they maneuver through narrow passageways that are often impacted by treacherous weather conditions and tidal changes.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems These marine systems are uniquely beautiful and productive while at the same time uniquely fragile and complex. A healthy Salish Sea ecosystem is relied on by many wild creatures, cultures, communities and economies. Their irreversible devastation must be avoided at all cost given their immense value to all Canadians and to those who visit this special place. The following are our specific concerns associated with increased commercial shipping:
Inability to adequately protect marine waters in the event of marine accidents, especially accidents involving hazardous material Impact on marine mammals due to increased utilization of sonar
Sea Shepherd, re. Marine mammal capture Wild Game Fish Conservation International is in full support of Sea Shepherd’s ongoing efforts to protect planet earth’s wild marine mammals from senseless, greed-driven capture and slaughter. These magnificent animals are far too beneficial to healthy wild ecosystems to inhumanely condemn them to instant death or a lifetime of slavery.
Responses to WGFCI:
Jeff Fournier, re. Marine Harvest pesticide permit. Section Head, Integrated Pest Management Ministry of Environment Coastal Region
Andrea Reimer, re. proposed Kinder Morgan pipeline expansion Councilor Vancouver, British Columbia Thank you very much for taking the time to write and for your advocacy for both Vancouver and a healthy climate. Council passed Mayor Gregor Robertson’s motion unanimously last Wednesday, which was a surprise and a testament to how important your letter - and the letters of the 748 others who wrote in support over the last 24 hours – is. You can read the full motion online at: http://former.vancouver.ca/ctyclerk/cclerk/20131218/doc uments/cfsc2.pdf
And the staff report outlining risks is online at: http://former.vancouver.ca/ctyclerk/cclerk/20131204/documents/ptec2presentation.pdf The next steps for the City of Vancouver are to prepare the application to the National Energy Board for intervenor status. The NEB will then decide whether or not to grant that application. This should be decided by February. If you’d like to be kept up to date on the City’s efforts to fight the unacceptable risk the Kinder Morgan proposal poses to our city, please let me know. Thank you again. And happy holidays! Andrea Councillor Andrea Reimer Chair - Planning, Transportation and Environment..
The Trans Mountain project calls for twinning most of Kinder Morgan's pipeline between the Edmonton area and Metro Vancouver.
David Boulet, re. open pen salmon feedlot lease fees Aquaculture Operations Fisheries and Oceans Canada Thank you for sharing your views with Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO) on the Government of Canada’s proposed fee structure for BC Aquaculture License Fees. Aquaculture is an important industry supporting economic growth and job creation, especially in rural, coastal and Aboriginal communities. The Government of Canada is committed to the conservation of marine ecosystems and to the development of an aquaculture industry that is both ecologically sustainable and economically viable. There is a strong regulatory system in place – one of the most rigorous in the world – to ensure that Canada’s aquaculture industry is safe, healthy, and ensures the sustainable use of our marine resources. Aquaculture regulations, based on the best available scientific research, are in place to safeguard the environment and wild fish stocks. In particular, the Pacific Aquaculture Regulations provide for licence conditions that include measures to: control and monitor the presence of pathogens and pests in aquaculture and wild fish waters; minimize the escape of aquaculture fish; minimize the impact of the aquaculture facility’s operations on fish and fish habitat; and monitor the environmental impact of the aquaculture facility’s operations. A Conservation and Protection unit was also created under the British Columbia Aquaculture Regulatory Program, with the primary role of enforcing compliance with the Fisheries Act and the Pacific Aquaculture Regulations. Above all, Canada's reputation for high quality seafood depends on keeping our wild and farmed aquatic species protected against serious infectious diseases. Fisheries and Oceans Canada takes this responsibility very seriously, working in cooperation with the Canadian Food Inspection Agency which is responsible for the National Aquatic Animal Health Program. DFO continues to focus on a strong regulatory framework for aquaculture in B.C., including appropriate siting of salmon farms, comprehensive license conditions, public reporting, monitoring, and compliance to ensure our management objectives are being met. As a result, the Canadian aquaculture industry operates under some of the strictest regulations in the world in order to minimize risks to the environment, and DFO will continue to support scientific research to help ensure the ecological sustainability of Canada’s aquaculture industry. When establishing the proposed BC aquaculture licence fees, DFO followed theUser Fees Act and DFO’s Guide to External Charging. DFO considered the original approach taken by the Province of BC, and committed to maintaining fees that were similar to ensure aquaculture operations were not unduly affected by the regulatory change. DFO was guided by several core principles in this process, including: fee for privileged access; effect on competitiveness; neutrality; simplicity; and practicality. As a result, the proposed fee represents an approach where privileged access is provided to a valuable resource for an amount that does not negatively affect the national and international competitiveness of an operation. At the same time, the fee is simple, cost-effective, and practical from an administrative standpoint; important considerations in the Government of Canada’s Red Tape Reduction Initiative. Finally, this is balanced with the Government of Canada’s commitment to sustainable resource development.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems It is the Department’s view that these externalities are taken into consideration during the initial siting and application phase of an aquaculture operation. Siting considers the best available science in order to minimize the impact on the environment and aquatic species. Understanding and managing such complex variables continues to be a focus for DFO, and these are taken into consideration at the initial application stage and throughout the ongoing management of an operation. The Department continues to support rigorous and unbiased scientific research to help ensure the ecological sustainability of Canada’s aquaculture industry, including interactions with the environment and existing wild species. Accordingly, variables being used to calculate proposed fees must be sufficiently objective and precise in order to allow for licence holders to calculate the amount themselves. Including elements that are significantly complex, variable and subjective (i.e., negative externalities, actual cost of deposits into the marine environment, etc.) would introduce a layer of complexity in fee design and calculation that would likely not withstand a challenge of transparency when a licence holder tries to determine the cost elements. Along with implementing license fees, DFO is also exploring a licence duration that goes beyond one year. Extended license duration is focused on removing an administrative burden for both the Department and stakeholders, an approach that falls in line with the Government of Canada’s efforts to reduce the red tape burden for Canadian business. However, it is not the intent of this process to consult on multi-year licenses, merely to signal our intention of exploring the option. Rest assured that future opportunities for comment will exist on this topic, and I would be happy to inform you of the consultation process once it has been engaged. In the meantime, I would like to reiterate that the Department is confident in its management measures, and more specifically, license conditions, that will continue to provide the necessary protection for aquatic ecosystems. These conditions must be met to maintain the licence validity and may be updated when appropriate, regardless of the licence duration. We trust that our response satisfies your comments and concerns on license fees and service standards for the BC aquaculture industry. If you wish to continue the dialogue on this subject, please provide further comments at your earliest convenience within the 30 day complaint resolution period (January 10, 2014 – February 9, 2014). If you are not satisfied with the Department’s response, you have the right to request that your concerns be reviewed by an Independent Advisory Panel (please see details on page 4). NOTE: Independent Advisory Panels will only be initiated if the complaint is within the scope of the consultations, and this includes complaints related to the fee itself or service standards.
Patty Murray, re, Endangered Species Act US Senator (Washington state) Thank you for writing to me regarding the Endangered Species Act (ESA). It was good to hear from you regarding this important piece of legislation. Throughout my tenure in the Senate, I have been a strong supporter of protection for endangered species and their critical habitats. I oppose rolling back strong protections for these species under the Endangered Species Act, Marine Mammal Protection Act, and similar laws to protect our nation's treasures.
Please know that I will work with my colleagues in the Senate and as a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee to see that endangered species programs obtain proper funding. Should legislation regarding endangered species come before the Senate during the 113th Congress, I will keep your thoughts in mind.
Jim Standen, re. Pesticide Use Permit (Marine Harvest) Assistant Deputy Minister Environmental Protection Division Minister of Environment British Columbia, Canada Thank you for your email of November 15, 2013, addressed to the Honourable Mary Polak, Minister of Environment, regarding the Pesticide Use Permit application submitted by Marine Harvest. As Assistant Deputy Minister for the Environmental Protection Division I am pleased to have this opportunity to respond on behalf of Minister Polak. The Ministry of Environment administers the British Columbia Integrated Pest Management Act and Regulations, which regulate the sale, use and handling of pesticides in the province and promote an integrated pest management approach to managing pests. Statutory decision makers within the Ministry of Environment are given authority to administer decisions such as the application submitted by Marine Harvest. They review proposals and determine the terms and conditions that must be followed to ensure that pesticide applications can proceed in a manner that will not result in an unreasonable averse effect. Should you have specific concerns you would like to discuss pertaining to the Pesticide Use Permit application submitted by Marine Harvest, please contact Mr. Jeff Fournier, Pesticide Officer in the South Coast office of the Environmental Protection Division, at 604 582-5261 or Jeff.Fournier@gov.bc.ca.
Legacy â€“ February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 â€“ Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems
ď ś Maria Cantwell, re. Endangered Species Act US Senator (Washington State)
Thank you for contacting me regarding the Endangered Species Act. I appreciate hearing from you on this issue. The Endangered Species Management Self-Determination Act (S. 1731) was introduced by Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY)on November 19, 2013. If enacted, this legislation would make several changes to the Endangered Species Act, including allowing governors to regulate endangered and threatened species in his or her state.This legislation was referred to the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works, where it is currently awaiting further review. I am a strong supporter of the Endangered Species Act; Please be assured that I will keep your thoughts in mind should I have the opportunity to vote on this or similar legislation. Asyou may know, President Nixon signed the Endangered Species Act (ESA) into law on December 28, 1973. Under the ESA, species of plant and animals (both vertebrate and invertebrate) may be listed as either endangered or threatened based on scientific assessments regarding their risk for extinction. Species listed as threatened are given more flexible management to assist in recovery. The Secretary of Interior or the Secretary of Commerce may list a species as endangered or threatened. The Secretary must decide whether to list the species based only on the best available scientific and commercial information, after an extensive series of procedural steps are taken to ensure public participation.Once a species is listed, the statute provides powerful legal tools, including penalties and citizen suit provisions, which are available to aid the recovery of the species and the protection of its habitat. Of the more than 2,000 globally and nationally endangered or threatened species listed under the ESA since1978, less than one percent have become extinct. Currently, 78 percent of species listed are in recovery plans. In the past 25 years, the ESA has been highly successful in achieving its first goal, rescuing species from the brink of extinction. According to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, nearly 60 percent of the species listed in the first years of the ESA are either stable or improving in status. Achieving the goals of the ESA requires the full participation of federal and state agencies, law enforcement, as well as the cooperation and commitment of private citizens. I agree that it is important that American citizens have a clear understanding ESA prohibitions and regulations, and I appreciate and value your suggestion for improving ESA education in schools and awareness through popular technology.
Community Activism, Education and Outreach: Leave this world better than when you found it
NEEDED NOW. Help block the Enbridge Northern Gateway
Protect Washington Waters from Oil Spills Begin HERE
Northwest Youth Conservation and Fly Fishing Academy June 22-28, 2014. Mark your calendars! 2014 Applications Applications for the 2014 Academy will be accepted starting January 1, 2014. ACADEMY FEATURES:
Co-educational, ages 12 – 16. Curriculum focuses on conservation, natural resource stewardship, and fly fishing essentials. Fly fishing classes include fly casting, fly tying, knot tying, reading water, and water safety. Morning and evening fly fishing activities on Nisqually Pond and Deschutes River. On-the-water aquatic macro invertebrate sampling activity. Career discovery opportunities. Faculty and staff include wildlife resource professionals, northwest fly fishing and fly tying professionals and enthusiasts, and local fishing club volunteers.
Cost, including food and lodging: $275
Application deadline: April 15, 2014
2014 Application 2014 Academy Features
Feds respond to Neil Young anti-oilsands tour January 12, 2014
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems OTTAWA – - Responding to Neil Young's anti-oilsands tour, the Prime Minister's Office says the rocker and political activist should mind his own carbon footprint before opposing projects it says present First Nations with economic opportunities unprecedented in Canada's history "The resource sector creates economic opportunities and employs tens of thousands of Canadians in high-wage jobs, contributing to a standard of living that is envied around the world and helping fund programs and services Canadians rely on," Prime Minister Stephen Harper's spokesman, Jason MacDonald, told QMI Agency. "Even the lifestyle of a rock star relies, to some degree, on the resources developed by thousands of hard-working Canadians every day," MacDonald noted. A vocal environmentalist and critic of Canada's oilsands, Young, a longtime resident of California, partnered with First Nations groups in Alberta for his Honour the Treaties Tour, which includes four shows beginning Sunday in Toronto, then Regina, Winnipeg and Calgary. Proceeds of the sold-out concerts go toward the yet undefined legal actions by the Athabasca Chipewyan First Nation to fight the expansion of the Shell-owned Jackpine Mine, 70 kilometres outside Fort McMurray, Alta., approved last month by the feds. In September, Young caused a bit of an uproar in Alberta when he said at a National Farmers Union event in Washington, D.C., “Fort McMurray looks like Hiroshima. "Fort McMurray is a wasteland,” Young said. “The fuel’s all over, the fumes everywhere – you can smell it when you get to town. The closest place to Fort McMurray that is doing the tar sands work is 25 or 30 miles out of town and you can taste it when you get to Fort McMurray,” he said. “People are sick. People are dying of cancer because of this. All the First Nations people up there are threatened by this.” In a press conference Sunday, Young accused the Canadian government of breaking its promise to First Nations. Allan Adam, chief of the Athabasca Chipewyan First Nation, told the CBC his community suffers high levels of cancer, lupus, skin rashes, asthma; he wants the government find out whether nearby oilsands activity is connected. Shell says the expansion will create 750 new full-time positions plus construction jobs. "We meet regularly with aboriginal communities to discuss projects, training and business opportunities," Shell spokesman David Williams said. "Conversations are open, regular and most often constructive." Allan Adam
A protestor holds a sign during an event with Prime Minister Stephen Harper at the Vancouver Board of Trade on Monday Jan. 6, 2013
Protesters carry placards across stage as Stephen Harper set to speak January 6, 2014
READ ENTIRE EDMONTON JOURNAL ARTICLE HERE
Hereditary Chief, Dan Wallace (center) during Prime Minister Harper’s “unwelcoming party” Editorial Comment (jw): Over the past several months I’ve had the extreme good fortune to begin to develop a respectful relationship with Hereditary Chief Dan Wallace, Cape Mudge First Nation, British Columbia. We have learned from each other and hopefully will continue to do so for a very long time. During this brief time, it’s become evident beyond any shadow of a doubt that Chief Wallace cares deeply for all who call Canada home, especially the indigenous people who have never known another home, although it may have had a different name originally. Chief Wallace is a passionate, well spoken leader who absolutely understands the relationships and balance between nature and man required for both to flourish. Most of all, Chief Wallace is also very passionate about his young family and their future in an ever changing society – an evolving society that must be built on the solid foundation of past cultures and resource-based values. My prayer is that you too will learn from Dan Wallace and other leaders to take appropriate action for your family, your culture and the natural resources necessary to sustain our lives and lifestyles.
Stephan Harper’s Official Unwelcoming Party – Vancouver, British Columbia
Protesters Block Stephen Harper’s Vancouver Island Venue Official Stephan Harper Unwelcoming Party – Day 2 Watch CHEK News video HERE January 7, 2014 MILL BAY, – About 100 protesters have blocked the gate at the facility where Prime Minister Stephen Harper is to meet Conservative party faithful on Vancouver Island. Many of them are carrying placards against the federal government’s position on climate change or the proposed Northern Gateway oil pipeline.
Chanting “Harper’s got to go,” much of the crowd is refusing to leave the access road to Brentwood College in Mill Bay. It’s the second time protesters have disrupted Harper’s plans on his swing through Western Canada. On Monday, two climate-change activists made it to the same stage as Harper during a questionand-answer event for a business crowd at a Vancouver hotel. Vancouver police have announced the pair won’t face charges though questions are being asked about how the protesters could have come within arm’s reach from the prime minister.
Whatever it takes – One step at a time Watch broadcast video HERE
B.C. chamber slams provincial business group over proposed
pipeline December 29, 2013 VANCOUVER - As far as business groups go, the Tofino-Long Beach Chamber of Commerce isn't the biggest or most powerful organization in British Columbia, but its members are still taking a very vocal and public stand against the proposed Northern Gateway pipeline. Their motive is simple: past experience.
In late December 1988, fuel from an 850,000 litre spill in Grays Harbour, Wash., made its way north to the west coast of Vancouver Island, fouling local beaches, killing thousands of seabirds and closing commercial shellfish operations. "Our business community can't afford any spills," said Gord Johns, executive director of organization that represents about 300 businesses in the tourism mecca on Vancouver Island. "Effectively, that would just wipe us out." Johns said the Tofino chamber decided to speak out against the pipeline after its provincial counterpart released the results of a pipeline poll earlier this month. At the time, the provincial chamber reported 47 per cent of British Columbians supported the project, and the numbers jumped to 57 per cent if the project received a positive recommendation from a federal joint-review panel. The joint-review panel endorsed the proposed pipeline Dec. 19, but with 209 conditions. The federal government now has about six months to make a decision. A representative from the BC Chamber of Commerce was not immediately available for comment. Johns said any spill on British Columbia 's North Coast, the proposed terminus of the Northern Gateway pipeline, would affect Tofino, too.
Legacy â€“ February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 â€“ Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems The Tofino chamber's website shows members include whale and wildlife watching companies, sport fishing operators, as well as kayak, scuba and surfing shops. "We've constantly had to voice our opinion, and make sure that the coastal communities are aware, and people in B.C. and Alberta, that the BC Chamber of Commerce does not represent all the chambers of commerce in the province of B.C., and it certainly isn't the voice of the coast," said Johns. Johns said the Tofino chamber took a position against the pipeline in an August 2010 letter to the joint-review panel and reaffirmed its opposition in June 2012. He said the Tofino chamber also spoke out against a pro-pipeline motion at the 2013 BC Chamber of Commerce's annual general meeting. Opposing large-scale industrial activities is nothing new to the community. Tofino and the surrounding Clayoquot Sound were ground zero for protests against clearcut logging back in the late 1980s.
Johns said the business community has historically joined with the environmental lobby in standing up for local ecosystems. "We certainly know that coastal communities in British Columbia will unite together to stand up to challenge any threat to the ecosystem and the food security and economies of the coast of British Columbia," he said. "And we've seen that in the past. I would not underestimate that that will happen again."
Kinder Morgan Proposed Pipeline Expansion Risks to public health, wild ecosystems, cultures, communities, economiy
Environmental groups take their fights to court A series of lawsuits, many of them launched by Ecojustice, aims to compel governments to enforce their own laws January 9, 2014 VANCOUVER -- A recent flurry of lawsuits by environmentalists aims to force governments to adhere to their own laws, the Vancouver-based executive director of Ecojustice said Thursday. Ecojustice, often in collaboration with other groups, has been at the forefront of the litigation since its inception in 1990. In part, that is due to a policy decision by the group to focus on litigation — “our bread and butter” — instead of public education and law reform, Devon Page said. But the lawsuits are all a response to government action, he added. On Wednesday, Ecojustice — representing a coalition of environmental groups — went to Federal Court in Vancouver to argue that the federal environment and fisheries ministers have “unlawfully” delayed final recovery strategies for four species well past mandatory deadlines. The species are the Pacific humpback whale, Nechako white sturgeon, marbled murrelet and southern mountain caribou. The case was filed in 2012. Since that year, Page noted, the Conservative government has watered down key federal legislation related to fish protection and environmental assessments, setting the bar high for lawsuits based on environmental grounds. Practically, launching a successful suit is harder than it’s ever been, he said in an interview. Yet the nature of environmental issues — and public awareness of those issues — has never been greater, resulting in continued strong donations to Ecojustice during fragile economic times, he added. The group has been involved in a total of nine separate legal actions in B.C. alone since 2009, ranging from species at risk and logging practices to aquaculture and fracking in the oil-and-gas sector. Five of those actions have been in the courts in the past year. “In B.C., there’s much greater awareness of what the environmental issues are,” Page said. “It’s inevitable we’ll always have more cases in B.C.”
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems Most environmental challenges seek a judicial review of the legality of a federal action, which can be difficult because the courts often defer to decision makers to interpret technical aspects of legislation, said Mark Haddock, a senior instructor of environmental law at the University of Victoria and a member of the Wilderness Committee board. However, the federal Species At Risk Act (SARA, which came into force in 2003) requires the federal government to take specific action such as developing species recovery plans within certain time periods. And that’s been a big key to Ecojustice’s success. “The more specific the legislation, the less room there is for argument on whether the government complied with the law,” Haddock said. Ecojustice has a $4.8-million budget in the 2013-14 fiscal year, up from $3.8 million in 2008-09. The portion from U.S. individuals and charitable foundations during that time amounted to 18 per cent and 20 per cent, respectively. “We try to use court cases to address the most significant threats to the environment, the greatest opportunities for environmental protection,” Page said. “We don’t choose cases based on funder priorities.” Ecojustice provides legal counsel for free, requiring clients such as environmental groups to pay for any court costs, including travel and photocopying costs. “No lawyer guarantees wins,” he said. “But a lot of our donors understand the value of scrutiny by the courts, win or lose.” To maintain their charitable status, environmental groups must ensure that no more than 10 per cent of their resources are devoted to political activity. Ecojustice is not considered political in that sense because it is simply trying to force the government to obey its own laws, Page said. “Forcing the federal government to follow its own laws is considered a charitable activity in its roots ...” He said it’s easier for environmental groups in the U.S. because they have more pieces of legislation on which to base legal action, including the Endangered Species Act, Clean Air Act, and Clean Water Act. Other Ecojustice cases in B.C.:
In 2009, the Federal Court admonished Ottawa for failing to properly identify the habitat of the Nooksack dace, an endangered minnow found in just four freshwater streams in Metro Vancouver.
In 2009, Ecojustice lost an injunction bid to protect the marine environment from seismic testing.
In 2010, the Federal Court ruled that Ottawa had not done enough to protect the critical habitat of killer whales related to issues of salmon availability, environmental contamination and noise pollution from marine traffic.
In 2011, the B.C. Supreme Court dismissed a multi-million-dollar damage claim against a small conservation group and one of its members in Langley who sought to protect fish habitat. Ecojustice acted on their behalf, calling the decision a victory for free speech.
In 2011, the Federal Court ordered federal fisheries to pay Ecojustice $80,000 in court costs after the department was found to be “unjustifiably evasive and obstructive” in the killer whale case.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems
In 2012, the Federal Court of Appeal upheld the 2010 decision, saying that the trial court was correct in finding that the fisheries government did not take adequate measures to protect killer whale habitat.
In 2013, action launched in Federal Court against the federal Minister of Fisheries and Oceans and Marine Harvest Canada challenging an aquaculture licence on BC’s coast.
In 2013, action launched in B.C. Supreme Court against the BC Oil and Gas commission challenging water permits for hydraulic fracturing.
In 2013, action launched against the B.C. government for failing to take steps under the Forest and Range Practices Act to make logging companies allow for conservation of coastal Douglas fir forests. The case is back in B.C. Supreme Court later this month.
In 2013, the B.C. Supreme Court ruled against an Ecojustice bid to force the Holmes hydro project near McBride to undergo an environmental assessment. Ecojustice argued that 10 linked Hydro plants will together generate 85 megawatts of electricity. But because no individual plant would generate more than 50 megawatts — the threshold for triggering an environmental assessment — none were ordered.
Outside of B.C., Ecojustice has also successfully gone to court in recent years over the federal government not meeting its SARA obligations related to the piping plover in Ontario, and the sage grouse in Alberta. In Wednesday’s case, the court is being asked to declare the delays in species recovery strategies “unlawful” and order those recovery plans. Ecojustice is representing the Wilderness Committee, Sierra Club, David Suzuki Foundation, Greenpeace and Wildsight. At the time the lawsuit was filed in late 2012, the final recovery strategies for these four species were between four and six years overdue. All four species named in the court action are affected by oil and gas expansion plans in B.C. and Alberta, in particular the Northern Gateway pipeline proposal, the groups said. Last fall, after the federal review panel weighing the Northern Gateway stopped hearing evidence, Fisheries Minister Gail Shea published a final recovery strategy for the Pacific humpback whale. In December, the ministry published a draft recovery strategy for the Nechako white sturgeon and the draft plan for the murrelet was published on Tuesday, the eve of the hearing. In written submissions, government lawyers said Ottawa does not dispute that the timelines set out in the act are legally required to be met, but they argued that with the publication of the final and draft recovery plans there is no remaining dispute.
Sign the Declaration to Save our Shore
When the course of current events trends towards disaster, the people of Canada and the US have the power and the obligation to band together to protect the places we love. Today's misguided path is an alarming number of proposals to bring tar sands crude and other kinds of risky oil to the West Coast, intensifying the threat of pipeline spills, rail accidents, vessel disasters and the devastating effects of climate change. Add your name to The Declaration to Save Our Shore, and together we can turn the tide against the tar sands and shift the focus to creating good local jobs we can all be proud of. We can say 'yes' to cleaner transportation and energy alternatives that reduce our consumption of dirty oil. The Declaration to Save Our Shore: With this declaration, we are sending out an SOS. Tar sands and crude exports from Canada and the United States must be stopped. The risks are real. In British Columbia, two proposed tar sands pipelines would result in a combined 700% increase in the number of tar sands tankers traveling up and down the West Coast, dramatically raising the risk of oil spills. In Washington State, the sudden appearance of multiple proposals to bring risky crude oil to our shores by rail has raised grave concerns about community safety. Increasing amounts of tar sands crude processed in local refineries threatens the health of both humans and the environment.
Together we pledge to take action to save our shores by saying no to tar sands and risky crude oil infrastructure in our communities, creating an unbroken wall of opposition on both sides of the border.
Evict Fish Farms from the Salish Sea
Legacy â€“ February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 â€“ Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems
ď ś Pledge Not to Sell Genetically Modified Salmon at Costco Sign petition HERE Genetically modified salmon could be approved for human consumption by the FDA this year, despite the fact that industry safety tests show high allergy risks and increased amounts of a growth hormone associated with cancer. Scientists have also discovered that some of the altered salmon are fertile - the FDA is basing their approval on the fish all being sterile females. If these fertile fish escape, they could out-compete wild salmon and cause severe ecological damage. Even worse, consumers won't be able to choose whether or not to purchase modified salmon because there is no federal labeling requirement. Join us in asking Costco CEO Craig Jelinek to join Target, Whole Foods, Trader Joes, Aldi and over 2,000 grocery stores in refusing to sell genetically modified salmon to his customers. To: Craig Jelinek, CEO, Costco Please join Whole Foods, Trader Joes, Aldi, PCC Natural Markets and more than 2,000 small grocers by signing the pledge not to sell genetically modified salmon to Costco customers. Genetically modified AquaBounty salmon has not been adequately tested for human or environmental safety. In some tests, the fish were shown to have a 40% higher chance of causing an allergic reaction in humans. The fish also have high levels of a growth hormone linked to cancer. Please stand up for your customers today by refusing to sell genetically modified salmon at Costco stores. Sincerely, [Your name]
Idle No More – One year old and healthy
Living and working in harmony to protect what needs protected
Idle No More anniversary: December 22, 2013 Watch, Listen, Learn HERE
Above: Hereditary Chief, Dan Wallace: “This is the time, the time is now, get off the fence”
Editorial Comment: The good people of Chilliwack and those who rely on the health of the Fraser River and the fish in this amazing river system should be outraged regarding this proposed hazardous waste facility that will likely catastrophically and irreversibly impact public health, wild ecosystems, cultures, communities and economies. We at Wild Game Fish Conservation International stand with other organizations in opposition to this irresponsible and unethical proposal.
Sto:lo Tribal Council Grand Chief Clarence Pennier speaks against a proposed hazardous waste facility in Chilliwack at a press conference held on the Fraser River Tuesday -
Opposition mounts to hazardous waste facility on Fraser River in Chilliwack Eleven First Nations, environmental and sports fishing organizations hold press conference on river to make demands Watch CBC news video HERE December 17, 2013 Representatives from 11 organizations—environmental, First Nations and sports fishery—gathered on the exposed sandbars of the Fraser River Tuesday to express their strong opposition to a proposed hazardous waste recycling facility nearby. Chilliwack city council unanimously approved the rezoning on Dec. 3 to allow for the Aevitas plant, which will recycle, among other things, 5,000 litres of transformer oil containing PCBs and 500,000 lamps containing mercury every month. "This is just not the location," B.C. Federation of Drift Fishers president Rod Clapton said Tuesday.
Legacy â€“ February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 â€“ Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems "For gosh sakes, not on the banks of the Fraser River," added Joe Foy, national campaign director for the Wilderness Committee. Grand Chief Clarence Pennier of the Sto:lo Tribal Council (STC) expressed his disappointment that First Nations were not consulted in any way about the project. Chilliwack Mayor Sharon Gaetz has pointed out on social media that the city followed all that is required of them by legislation under the Local Government Act. Pennier didn't dispute that the city does not have a legal duty to consult with First Nations, but he suggested it is what good neighbours do. "They should at least talk to us about what projects are going to happen in our territory," Pennier said. Other organizations represented at the press conference included the Fraser Valley Salmon Society, the B.C. Federation of Fly Fishers, the Steelhead Society of B.C., the Fraser Valley Angling Guides Association, the Fraser River Salmon Table, the Chilliwack Fish & Game Protective Association, the Watershed Watch Salmon Society and the Chilliwack-based WaterWealth Project. All those in attendance on Tuesday reiterated that their organizations were not opposed to the existence of a hazardous waste recycling facility, but the Cannor Road property on the Cattermole Lands, which frequently has water on it during the freshet, was not a good choice. The groups collectively demand relocation of the proposed facility to a site that does not pose a risk to fish stocks, and comprehensive public reviews of the proposal by the Ministry of Environment and the Ministry of Health. A city staff report from the rezoning hearing stated that the Aevitas plant's design will be subject to Ministry of Health approval. It was at that hearing that, in response to STC fisheries advisor Ernie Crey's request to delay a decision until First Nations could properly respond, Gaetz addressed her concern about the Cheam band's dump, which is not in operation. She called it a "toxic landfill," which is "far more dangerous to our waters than a recycling operation." The Cheam landfill on the band's reserve has long been alleged to have been a dump for toxic construction materials. Crey responded that the Cheam landfill has a "clean bill of health," according to what he has been told. He and others also pointed out that Gaetz's comments were a deflection and had nothing to do with the hazardous waste facility in question. Aevitas president Byron Day addressed council on Dec. 3 to say the company has 20 years of experience doing this work on a larger scale in Brantford, Ontario. He said the work would be done in an enclosed facility with emergency protection, fire suppression equipment and flood protection measures. Day did not respond to an email request for an interview to explain the project further and why the site in question was chosen.
Don Staniford of The Global Alliance Against Industrial Aquaculture poses in Vancouver, Jan.7, 2012. British Columbia's highest court may have placed a muzzle on anti-salmon-farming activist Staniford, but that hasn't stopped the man described by one judge as a "zealot" from continuing his personal battle against the industry.
Gagged by B.C. court, fish-farm foe takes fight against industry to Scotland December 24, 2013 VANCOUVER - British Columbia's highest court may have placed a muzzle on anti-salmon-farming activist Don Staniford, but that hasn't stopped the man described by one judge as a "zealot" from continuing his personal battle against the industry.
Legacy â€“ February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 â€“ Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems After losing a defamation case this past summer against one of the province's biggest salmonfarming companies, Mainstream Canada, Staniford moved shop to Scotland. There, he leads an organization known as Protect Wild Scotland, co-ordinating actions against Norwegian-owned, salmon-farming companies in the United Kingdom and Ireland, and even back in B.C. There, he is equally as vocal on the issue of salmon farming and appears unfazed by the gag order put in place in B.C. "The question for my lawyer and the question for me in the future is how can this injunction, this judgment, this ruling be applicable to my work in Scotland and Ireland," said Staniford, during a recent interview. "I've always been a global campaigner and visited New Zealand and Australia and Chile, so how can they enforce such a ludicrous judgment internationally, especially, when you've got Twitter and Facebook." The B.C. Court of Appeal ordered Staniford this past July to pay $75,000 in damages for defaming Mainstream Canada during a 2011 campaign, in which he used graphics that looked like cigarette packages and boasted slogans like, "Salmon Farming Kills Like Smoking." The three member panel found that a lower court judge erred when she upheld Staniford's defence of fair comment during the original defamation ruling, a ruling in which she called him a "zealot," challenged his credibility and noted his "closed-mindedness and deep prejudices make him an unreliable reporter of facts." B.C. Court of Appeal Justice David Tysoe said the defamatory publications did not meet all four elements of a legal test because Staniford didn't reference the facts upon which he based his comments. Tysoe then ordered Staniford to pay $25,000 and $50,000 in general and punitive damages, respectively, and granted a permanent injunction, requested by the Norwegian-owned company, restraining the activist from "publishing similar words and images in the future." Staniford said he has done what's necessary in B.C. to comply with the court order, taking down his Global Alliance Against Industrial Aquaculture and Superheroes 4 Salmon websites and even stopping his blog. Careful, too, is Staniford about what he says of Mainstream during interviews, while his Vancouverbased lawyer David Sutherland awaits a decision by the Supreme Court of Canada on whether it will hear an appeal. Stifled in B.C., Staniford said he "had no real choice but to set up shop somewhere else," and he is now working with a private Scottish land owner, taking action against the industry, specifically the Norwegian-owned companies. "My boss has six salmon farms within 30 kilometres of her salmon river, so the challenge is to move those six farms by 2020 and fight the Scottish government's plans for a 50 per cent expansion of the industry by 2020."
Legacy â€“ February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 â€“ Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems Staniford said he presented Scotland's first minister, Alex Salmond, with a letter in early December, and it called on the government to "curb expansion by instituting an immediate moratorium." In November, he co-ordinated protests against the industry at grocery stores in England, and he worked in September with a Green party member of the Scottish Parliament to introduce a question on the ownership of salmon-farming companies. Staniford said he also filed a recent complaint against the BBC over a program it aired about the industry. Protect Wild Scotland alleges on its website that the BBC "caved into demands by the Norwegian-owned giant and the Scottish Salmon Producersâ€™ Organisation," and decided not to interview the environmental organization for the program. Few of those who have found themselves on the receiving end of Staniford's actions are willing to say much about the campaigner. The Scottish Salmon Producers' Organisation wouldn't even use his full first name in recent email response to The Canadian Press. "I can confirm that D. Staniford is protesting in the UK, however, we have no further comment to make," said Angela Kelly, a spokeswoman for the organization. Similar, too, was the response from the BBC. "We are happy that the piece was editorially balanced and showed no bias towards either side in the ongoing debate about the future of fish farming," said an unidentified spokesperson. Grant Warkentin, a spokesman for Mainstream Canada, which changed its name to Cermaq in November, said the company doesn't have much to say about Staniford anymore because it doesn't have any operations in Scotland. "We're not really following his activities in Scotland," he added, noting his company is continuing its work in B.C. However, Iain Thom, a spokesman for Alison Johnstone, a member of the Scottish parliament, confirmed Staniford asked her to lodge a written parliamentary question on the ownership of Scottish salmon companies, and he called Staniford a well-known and committed campaigner. "The question seemed a sensible one, so we were happy to do so," he said. Staniford was back in Vancouver recently, where he visited family and friends and attended a flash mob against a proposed mining project, and on a following night, he planned on attending an event for indigenous rights. Staniford said he has no plans of giving up his fight against the industry.
"I am a campaigner and I have been for 15 years against salmon farming," he said. "I've worked in Ireland, Scotland, Australia, New Zealand, Chile, the United States, Canada, all around the world against salmon farming, and I will continue to do so."
Congratulations!! Ricky’s ALL DAY GRILL: Sustainable Seafood Champ
Ricky’s All Day Grill: Recognized by Atlantic Salmon Boycott Campaign No Atlantic salmon offered to Ricky’s valued customers December 18, 2013 (photos courtesy of Chris Gadsen)
Ricky’s event follow-up Eddie Gardner Atlantic Salmon Boycott Campaign Co-ordinator Ricky's will feature their seafood sustainability policy that includes not having net-pen farmed salmon on their menu at all 70 Ricky's locations! This shows great leadership and ethical standards that benefits both human health and wild salmon and its habitat. It also shows that the food industry can thrive without cheap, contaminated net-pen farmed salmon. The movement just got a real boost today and we will build on the incredible 2013 accomplishments as we move into 2014. Saturday, January 18, we rev things up with a Net-Pen Farmed Salmon Boycott at Superstores at more than seven locations across BC! During the holiday break, we will develop information materials targeting sushi restaurants, and a poster on the wild salmon economy and how it compares with the highly subsidized open net-pen aquaculture industry. Our hands go up to all the wild salmon lovers who were able to make it to Ricky's this evening and to the hundreds who posted their support and emailed their encouragement to continue the good work. Stay tuned! We will be out in full force in 2014!
Tatsu Japanese Bistro: Sorry, No Farmed Salmon
Mehdi interviewed Alexandra Morton about salmon Listen HERE
What a year! In the final weeks of 2013, the CFIA got reassigned to the Minister of Health and I finally got an answer my question. The CFIA never did retest my samples. Now what - how do we evaluate the ISA virus risk to British Columbia? Despite their commitment to offer wholesome food, I found Whole Foods uses standards that exceed WHO toxin recommendations to sell Norwegian farmed salmon in some stores. These two incidents have shaped my course of action for 2014. If you think I should keep going I need your help. Here is a summary of 2013. Thank you so much for your encouragement, help and brilliant ideas! Political careers and markets are critically compromising themselves to accommodate this industry. 2014 is the year we move on to a much more brilliant form of aquaculture and relationship with wild salmon
Wild Salmon Warrior Radio with Jay Peachy – Tuesday Mornings “Streaming like wild Pacific salmon” December 17, 2013: Massom Creek Community Salmon Hatchery Fire, Science of Salmon, Kinder Morgan pipeline project, Idle No More December 24, 2013: Cash Mob at Ricky’s All Day Grill December 31, 2013: Susan Patles Mi'kmaq Warrior Society - front lines at Elsipogtog, upcoming speaking tour January 14, 2014: Societal awareness through activism and media
Open pen salmon and trout feedlots
Sustainability is impossible until companies admit environmental cost While companies' impact on the environment remains ignored the question of how society deals with the consequence of this damage will remain unanswered January 13, 2014 On holiday recently, I visited the Japanese sacred area of Kumano Kodo. Miles of treks mark pilgrim routes from the ancient capital of Kyoto to a number of shrines located around the Wakayama peninsula. We were walking on a high ridge and stopped to look and to listen to the forest sounds – bird song, a variety of insect noises and large butterflies. But something was strange. The sound was coming at us in mono not in stereo. One side of the ridge fell off steeply. The forest was lush, varied and full of animal and insect life. It was from this side that the cacophony of sound was coming. The other side of the ridge was less steep and had been commercially exploited as a wood plantation: a monoculture of pine trees. No or very little life other than the pine trees themselves could survive here. By some standards, the pine plantations can be considered "sustainable". They are well managed, re-planting takes place and the soil is maintained in good condition. But what of the vast amount of other life that has been driven out and destroyed in the process of turning whole mountain ranges into managed forests? Who bears the cost of that? The management of "externalities" – as such damage is un-emotionally labelled by economists – has proven to be one of the most intractable issues in moving towards sustainability. Neither does the ability for businesses to do damage or dump their waste unhindered only hurt the environment. It can lead to the creation of products that can be harmful to human health. Take the Norwegian salmon farming industry – and most salmon farming elsewhere, much of which is controlled by Norwegian companies. A report on farmed salmon by Green Warriors of Norway, stated that "farmed fish is Norway's most toxic product." Why? Some salmon farms dump toxic waste into rivers and oceans. Besides the obvious and substantial damage both to the oceans and to ocean life, the ability to dump waste unhindered allows the salmon producers to use antibiotics and carcinogenic chemicals in the farms in order to "optimise" the commercial value of their product.
A proportion of these chemicals remain in the fish and, as a result, the salmon we all eat may be far from the clean, healthy, natural, product it is positioned as. Even the typical salmon colouring is often chemically added as farmed salmon emerge with dull, grey flesh. The issue of imposing costs on others has been one of the most intractable in the sustainability debate. Attempts to move forward have been criticised by all sides. Businesses have resisted taking on the full costs of their activities. Even when alternative technologies that could eliminate and reduce dumping significantly already exist and are affordable – as in salmon farming – producers refuse to adopt them. Regulators prefer to maintain the status quo rather than discharging responsibilities to environment and human health. On the other side, some environmentalist groups have objected to attempts to offset some of industry's externalised costs as representing a commodification of nature. Industry cannot absorb previously externalised costs overnight. It is also clear that continuing to ignore the consequences is not longer acceptable. A first step would be a requirement for all corporations to be transparent about the externalities they generate in financial, environmental and human health terms. We can then start an open discussion asking: if corporations do not wish to bear these costs they generate, how should our society deal with them? While these costs remain hidden and largely ignored, such a discussion is impossible. There are signs of progress. The new UK requirement for quoted companies to report on their greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions is a welcome step forward. But the requirement should be extended to include every sort of externalised environmental impact throughout the whole of the supply chain. A few companies have started this process. Puma is probably the best known for its environmental profit and loss statement. Patagonia is another company that takes its environmental responsibilities seriously. They have made great progress but, they do not yet fully and transparently account for all the costs they are imposing of the environment and on human health. We are all shocked when we see images of open dumping of garbage in the streets or waste piles in the cities of many developing countries. Yet the discussion of the vast amount of dumping and other externalised costs by industries worldwide receives little attention. Until corporations start being fully transparent about the full costs they impose on the environment and regulators start to take such dumping seriously, much of the talk about creating sustainable business will remain just talk. Transparency and an open debate about how, as a society, we should meet externalised costs are both long overdue.
FISH FARMS POSE BIOSECURITY RISK, SAYS NEW STUDY Live fish pathogens are being transmitted from farmed salmon processing facilities into the marine waters of Canada’s Pacific coast, a new study has confirmed. Researchers at the University of Victoria say their peer-reviewed study titled “Fish processing facilities: new challenge to marine biosecurity in Canada,” published recently in the Journal of Aquatic Animal Health, shows that fish farms pose a marine biosecurity risk for Canada and that better guidelines and monitoring of fish farms by the Canadian government are needed. Salmon farms routinely experience outbreaks of sea lice, and juvenile wild salmon swimming past farms are often infected with sea lice.
Photo credit: Twyla Roscovich
However, this is the first time that a processing facility for farmed salmon has been identified as a source of sea lice. In this study, the authors recovered hundreds of live lice and eggs directly from the effluent of a facility that processes Atlantic salmon on Vancouver Island's east coast. The study site supports several wild salmon populations, including Canada’s largest annual migration of juvenile sockeye salmon. “Sea lice and other disease vectors transmitted from facilities processing farmed fish from across the province may pose a threat to wild salmon populations,” says UVic marine ecologist Dr. John Volpe, a co-author of the paper. “Our study demonstrates that disease transmission is possible from farmed fish to wild fish through the tissue, blood and mucus released in untreated farmed salmon offal. “If live sea lice eggs are pouring out of farmed salmon processing plants, it is likely that infectious bacteria and viruses are as well,” says Volpe, adding that more research is needed to determine the extent of sea lice release and whether more virulent fish pathogens are present in fish farm effluent. The other authors of the paper were UVic biologist Michael Price, Raincoast Research Society biologist Alexandra Morton, and J.G. Eriksson with Sonora Marine Services.
2013 worst ISA year in Norway since 2009 January 10, 2014
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems Ten outbreaks of infectious salmon anemia (ISA) were confirmed in Norwegian salmon farms last year, up from just two cases in 2012, reported Kyst.no, citing data from the Norwegian veterinary institute. That is the highest number of outbreaks seen in Norway since 2009, when ten cases were also detected.
Claudette Bethune: “Gosh, could it be because sea lice, the known vector of ISA was at its all time high in 2013? Oh, and that sea lice are now resistant to all treatments, including direct bleaching with peroxide?” http://statistikk.lusedata.no/Lus.aspx
The Nordland department was home to eight of last year’s outbreaks, with the two others occurring in Troms and Sogn og Fjordane. In 2012, More og Romsdal was home to both the year’s outbreaks, while in 2009, seven of the outbreaks were in Troms, and three in Nord Trondelag. Nevertheless, 2008 remains the worst ISA year of the past decade for Norwegian farmers. A total of 16 ISA cases were reported that case, of which nine were in Troms. Pancreas disease main worry ISA was the main virus affecting salmon in Norway for years, with the number of outbreaks in the two-digit range around the change of the century. After 2008, however, ISA in Norway experienced a clear retreat. Instead, the most deadly and costly virus now plaguing Norway’s salmon farms is pancreas disease. A total of 137 outbreaks of PD were recorded in 2012. Last November, the Norwegian food safety authority warned that PD had reached a critical point in Norway, after the disease was detected at its northernmost point so far. Until then, PD had been contained below Hustadvika, an area between Sor Trondelag and its northern neighboring region, Nord Trondelag. If the disease spreads further north, it will be able to spread across farms that are located like “beads on a string” along the coast, Aud Skrudland of the NNFA told Adressa.no at the time.
Alexandra Morton: “They cannot control it at home and yet they risk British Columbia with it. It is only a matter of time before the ISA virus we are seeing in BC goes virulent here. Please if this news bothers you call a sushi restaurant or market and tell them how you feel about them selling farmed salmon. These companies have convinced governments to protect them, not the wild fish - the common property resource.... old old story with stupidly predictable outcome.”
Why Farmed Fish Need More Veggies In Their Diet January 7, 2014 Consumer demand for sustainable farmed seafood is growing, but the food supply for the salmon in the pens is running thin – there are simply not enough fish in the sea. “Historically, fishmeal [ground-up wild fish] has been a relatively inexpensive and highly nutritious [fish food] source,” says Ian Forster, an aquatic animal nutrition scientist for Fisheries and Oceans Canada. However, according to The State of World Fisheries and Aquaculture, a 2012 report by the United Nations' Food and Agriculture Organization:
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems “fish farming has been growing by almost nine per cent each year for the past 30 years – to the point where demand for fish food is exceeding supply.: The price of fishmeal has been rising steadily as a result, and changes in ocean currents during El Niño years cause the already maxed-out fish stocks to dwindle even further, sending prices skyrocketing periodically. Feed manufacturers are trying to find ways to maximize the amount of fishmeal and oils they can get from the heads and tails and trimmings that would normally be discarded by the seafood industry. But in order to shift our dependence away from wild-caught fish stocks and protect fish farmers against the year-to-year variability in feed prices, scientists are racing to develop alternative sources of food. The trick is finding a way to get these finicky farmed fish to expand their edible horizons. Basically, “We’re trying to feed carnivores – salmon and trout – plant products,” says Murray Drew, associate dean and professor at the University of Saskatchewan's College of Agriculture and Bioresources. Reluctant omnivores The research aimed at replacing fish meal and oil with locally grown plants builds on fish-farming practices that have been around for several decades. According to Jason Mann, managing director of the fish feed manufacturer EWOS Canada, when fish farming was a new industry in the mid-1980s, the food given to farmed fish was about 85 per cent processed wild-caught fish (fishmeal and fish oil) and 15 per cent wheat. Today, the ingredients list of any feed often has more than 13 different ingredients in order to include all the nutrition the fish need, says Mann. “Most of the feed producers are still heavily dependent on wild fish that are caught and ground up into pellets. But almost all the feeds have some supplemental lipids and fats just to make the food go further,” says Colin Brauner, professor of zoology at the University of British Columbia. The trick is getting the balance of nutrients right. Researchers and feed manufacturers are focusing their efforts on using locally grown alternative proteins and oils while maintaining both the health of the fish and the nutritional value of its fillets. At Fisheries and Oceans Canada, research is being done into alternative ingredients like “canola, soybean, poultry meals, corn-gluten meal – these are [all] common ingredients used in agriculture feeds,” says Forster. Corn-gluten meal and pet-food-grade poultry byproduct meal are also often used as “highly nutritious sources of protein” in fish feed, says Mann.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems But according to Drew, not all plant ingredients are edible by fish. Some of the plants actually have “anti-nutritional factors.” For example, soybeans have an anti-nutritional factor that inhibits trypsin – a vital enzyme in both human and fish stomachs that breaks down proteins. To neutralize this problem, soybeans must be roasted or cooked before they can be eaten by either fish or humans. By using combinations of ingredients, feed manufacturers like EWOS Canada have already reduced the total marine content - which includes fishmeal and fish oil - in their feeds to by “anywhere from 18 to 30 per cent,” says Mann, raising the plant-based content to more than 70 per cent. Tastes like chicken Unfortunately, a fish that accepts a plant-based diet but shows no problems with their health and welfare, “might not taste as good and they might not have the same nutritional quality,” says Brauner. It’s like the old saying goes, you are what you eat. “If you just give the fish vegetable oil, you can run into a thing where they don’t taste like fish anymore, they taste like chicken,” says Drew. High concentrations of omega-3 fatty acids are the reason that the fish on our plate has the taste that consumers expect. Omega-3s are also the heart-healthy fat that we all need plenty of in our diet. Researchers are looking at ways to supply fish with omega-3s without feeding them other fish. Mann says that flax oil is very high in omega-3s, for example, but it’s expensive and hard to get in large quantities. Canola oil has lower levels of omega-3s, but in Canada, it’s inexpensive and easy to get in large amounts, he says. Brauner’s research shows that “we could replace up to 70 per cent of fish [oil] with canola oil with no negative effects on growth or environmental tolerance,” but these fish would not have the full “fishy” flavour in their fillets. Another approach is to raise fish primarily on plant-based nutrients, and feed them fish protein in the weeks before they are harvested. “What the industry will do is after the [fish have] been reared on a diet that has a greater proportion of plant-based material, they’ll put them on what’s called a 'finishing diet' for a few months,” says Brauner “The point of that is that it converts the animal back to almost what it would have been if it had been reared on this diet its whole life,” says Brauner. Forster says that “some species of fish are more able, more willing, to accept alternative ingredients than others,” so researchers are still searching for a balanced mix of ingredients to keep the fish, and the fillets we get from them, healthy and full of omega-3s. Understanding what fish are able to eat, and using different combinations of all the available substitute food sources, may bridge the gap between supply and demand of fish feed as farming continues to grow.
Van Diemen Aquaculture general manager Di Maynard inspects a seal-proof copper net. Picture: Matthew Newton.
Tasmania's salmon trade casts deadly net TASMANIA'S booming salmon farming industry, which trades on a "clean, green" image, has a dirty big secret: the brutal deaths of hundreds of protected native animals, including rare seals, dolphins and seabirds. June 22, 2013 Official data obtained by The Weekend Australian under Freedom of Information laws shows at least 144 protected seals -- including rare New Zealand fur seals -- have died as a result of fish farming in just four years.
Legacy â€“ February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 â€“ Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems Most drowned, stuck in under-water netting, while some seen as aggressive or "repeat offenders" were killed by lethal injection. Others died in holding cages, as the result of the use of explosive charges or during relocation. At least nine dolphin drownings in nets or equipment have been recorded in the past two years, while data suggests hundreds of seabirds -- including protected species -- are trapped each year. The number of seals captured and relocated from fish farms has also surged, amid a "perfect storm" created by the recovery of seal populations from historic lows at a time of rapid expansion of the industry. Official figures show 452 seal relocations -- from fish farms to beaches hundreds of kilometres away - in the past three years, sometimes resulting in deaths in transit. As well, the use of seal deterrents -bean-filled bullets fired from a 12-gauge shotgun and explosive charges, known as crackers -- has become at times a daily occurrence. Use of these "deterrents" also appears to have become excessive, with multiple cases of between 140 and 215 explosive crackers used at a single farm in a single day. The Weekend Australian has witnessed the dumping of seals, killed at fish farms or during relocation, at suburban Hobart rubbish tips. Tasmania's salmon and ocean trout farms -- circular pens supporting fish nets -- are becoming a common sight in the state's bays, harbours and rivers. The $500 million industry has doubled in size in recent years and is growing annually, with the state and federal governments subsidising an expected further doubling of production to $1 billion in coming years. Leading Tasmanian wildlife biologist Nick Mooney said the high number of deaths and relocations was unacceptable and urgent action was needed to redesign fish pens. Mr Mooney, who has 40 years' experience, including in managing interaction between industry and wildlife, said the industry faced a public relations disaster unless it acted quickly. "It is a major problem and it must be addressed," he said. "If somebody allowed domestic stock to drown in the way that these seals are dying, there would be very serious outrage. "But these animals die out of sight; mostly, no one ever hears about it. People just don't know about it. As a community, I don't think we should be tolerating this. "The number of deaths and the continual carting of animals across Tasmania, only to have most of them coming back within a short period . . . is crazy. And there are serious animal welfare issues." Most of the 452 seals relocated spent hours in a small cage being driven on busy highways from fish farms in the state's south to Pardoe Beach, near Devonport, in the northwest. Records show seals are sometimes "stressed" during the three-hour trips.
Legacy â€“ February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 â€“ Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems An independent study on seal relocation, using tracking devices, found almost all return to fish farms within three to eight days, concluding the practice had "little long-term benefit". No data appears to be kept on seabirds killed in the surface nets of the pens, but a single, eightmonth trial of netting mesh types in 2009 noted 639 such deaths. An audit of nets over one weekend in September 2011 found 200 trapped seabirds, including protected species: pied cormorants, Pacific gulls, kelp gulls and silver gulls. The audit found breaches of licensing provisions and potentially animal welfare law, and recommended "a strategy to deal with the issue". Mr Mooney said the large number of seals drowning in false bottoms of the net cages showed the problem was one of "sloppy" net design. "The engineering is not up to scratch," he said. "You simply don't tolerate these sorts of accident rates, particularly where they involve very serious welfare problems." Leading salmon farming companies admitted the industry's growing clash with wildlife was a serious problem and that they needed to do more to design and install predator-proof pens and nets. The largest producer, Tassal, said it had since last year stopped euthanasing problem seals and was spending $6m to roll out stronger, semi-rigid, plastic nets that it was confident would exclude almost all seals. Tassal sustainability manager Linda Sams said: "We're not claiming to have all the answers but we definitely think we have started to move in the right direction. It's a challenge but not one we can't overcome. We have to learn how to farm and co-exist with them. No one wants to see the seals harmed. It is up to us to find the solutions." Second largest producer Huon Aquaculture agreed that it was a "big issue" that could only be solved via better designed fish cages. Business development manager David Morehead said Huon Aquaculture had spent 18 months working with the Fisheries Research and Development Corporation on predator-proof pens. As a result, it was committed to spending $40m to replace its 150 pens with a new design using two nets, including a predator net around each fish net. A trial pen using netting fabric three times stronger than steel -- as well as higher bird nets -- had successfully excluded wildlife. Van Diemen Aquaculture said it had also invested heavily in trialing tougher nets, including copper and plastic, both of which had shown improvement. VDA general manager Di Maynard said her farm in the state's north had a resident seal population that was tolerated unless they threatened staff or stock, with crackers used "rarely". "We are in their natural environment (but) we have to protect our stock and our crew from them," she said.
Legacy â€“ February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 â€“ Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems "Killing them is not a solution on a whole number of fronts. There are so many of them and it's not like a contained population on an island where you can cull for a purpose. So excluding them from fish farms is a better option. The answer has to be technology; developing better ways of excluding them." The Tasmanian government said the problem was complex and that it was working to manage it. Resource Management and Conservation general manager Alistair Scott said: "This issue is about managing human health and safety as well as wildlife issues, as on a number of occasions fish farm operators have raised concerns over the safety of their staff when trying to manage seals. "The department has worked with the industry to establish standards that must be met. There is a requirement for industry to report seal mortalities. These . . . are investigated and follow-up action . . . can result."
Abandoned salmon feedlot pens – Butter Cove, Newfoundland Risk to public safety, navigation, wild ecosystems
Barry Joe: “This is located at butter cove (Newfoundland); and this is my problem with what aquaculture is doing in our area. These cages have obliviously outlived their usefulness and should of been removed from the water. Instead they will be left and every winter storm will dismantle them for an unsuspecting boat to have an encounter with in the next boating season.”
Atlantic salmon suffering from amoebic gill disease
Diseases in Seawater-Farmed Salmon Have Multiple Causes, Lead to Substantial Losses December 16, 2013
Legacy â€“ February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 â€“ Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems Gill diseases in salmon farmed at sea lead to huge losses in some years and occur particularly in the autumn in salmon that has been released into the sea in the spring. Agnar Kvellestad's PhD thesis shows how several different causes play a role in the development of these diseases. One of the diseases, proliferative gill inflammation (PGI) was identified in the 1980s. The biggest losses resulting from PGI have been in South West Norway. The causes have been partially identified, but more knowledge is needed so that preventive measures can be implemented to a larger degree than has been possible up until now.
By using light microscopy (histology), Kvellestad describes in detail the changes that occur in cases of PGI disease. PGI has several causes. In this study, a number of different pathogenic organisms were found in the gills of fish suffering from the disease. The study also appraises the effect of environmental factors.
One virus that was unknown up until now, the Atlantic salmon paramyxo virus, was isolated and characterised. The virus was detected in fish where there was an outbreak of PGI in gill tissue showing disease changes, but it was not documented as a primary cause of the disease. In addition, two different bacteria were found in the gills, one that was already known and another new one, which is normally found in so-called epithelial cysts and is called "Candidatus Branchiomonas cysticola." These bacteria may be among the primary causes of PGI. Parasites, which have also been detected, appear to be a secondary cause. Kvellestad examined whether environmental factors can play a part in PGI by studying data registered by aquafarms and by the Norwegian Institute of Marine Research (www.imr.no/en). The results indicate that the prevalence of the disease is linked to high seawater temperatures, especially when the temperature of the surface water is high in august. Another disease, amoeba-induced gill disease (AGD), was first diagnosed in Norway in late autumn 2006. It was detected in fish farms located furthest off the coast of Western Norway, i.e. in places with a high salt concentration. In 2006, the temperature of the sea was abnormally high in the surface water in August and also in deeper water during the late autumn. This disease has been a major problem for fish farming in Tasmania for many years and it may in the future lead to large losses in the Norwegian salmon farming industry.
Many west coast salmon farms ‘in sensitive areas’ January 3, 2014 A SCOTTISH conservation charity has claimed that over half of the salmon farms off the west coast of Scotland are sited in the most sensitive areas for wild salmon. A new map, developed by the Rivers and Fisheries Trusts of Scotland (Rafts), identifies the most sensitive locations.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems The detailed map of the west Highlands and Islands suggests that 57% of the salmon farms in the area are located in the most important areas for wild salmon and sea trout. Roger Brook, of Rafts, said: “It is imperative that the salmon farming industry avoids those areas which are most damaging to wild salmon and sea trout. This Locational Guidance map is an evidence-based tool that pinpoints those areas. “Rafts and other wild fisheries groups have argued for years that many fish farms are too close to migratory fish rivers, increasing the risk that sea lice released from fish farms will infect wild salmon and sea trout.” Interaction between wild and farmed salmon Rafts has been responsible for the Scottish Government’s Managing Interactions Aquaculture Project (MIAP) on behalf of fishery trusts and boards since 2011. MIAP focused on interactions between salmon aquaculture with wild salmonids on Scotland’s west coast, from Argyll to West Sutherland and the Outer Hebrides. The aim, the organisation says, is to identify areas that are particularly sensitive to wild salmon and sea trout and which the aquaculture industry should avoid if damage to wild stocks is to be minimised or avoided. Brook said: “It should be of major concern to all those charged with managing and regulating salmon farms that the majority of existing farms are inappropriately sited from a wild fish perspective. Serious consideration should now be given to a selective relocation programme.” Mr Brook added: “The development of the map was always intended as a means of influencing the planning process locally. “Essentially it is an evidence-based approach to inform representations to planning proposals for new fish farm sites. Fishery trusts, fishery boards and others can use the map to improve protection of wild fish by identifying the highest risk places. No such tool has existed previously”. Background Formed in 2005, Rafts is an independent freshwater conservation charity representing Scotland’s national network of 25 rivers and fisheries trusts and boards. Scott Landsburgh, chief executive of the Scottish Salmon Producers’ Organisation, said: “As stated by Rafts, the model announced today is still in its infancy. “I look forward to seeing it develop in order to see if it becomes of value to the planning process as claimed. “I am sure the Scottish Government will want to look closely at its development and will need to consult widely when it reaches a more developed stage, particularly as it has already made clear its support for the development of the farmed salmon industry.”
Dal tainted by fish-farm grant January 2, 2014
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems A well-known operator of open-pen fish farms has been convicted on two counts of using illegal pesticides. Some of these pesticides are lethal to lobsters, and resulted in the deaths of several hundred pounds of crustaceans several years ago in New Brunswick. Studies have shown there may be a risk to human health from residual toxins from chemicals used in this industry.
The same operator of a fish farm in Queens County knowingly and secretly grew 240,000 fish with infectious salmon anemia to maturity, transported them to their processing plant in New Brunswick and processed them for market just before they would have died of the disease. They sought and gained approval from the Canadian Food Inspection Agency to distribute the fish to supermarkets in Canada without identification to distinguish them from other salmon.
Strike two. This same operator has ignored reports that certain bays are not suitable for fish farms because of shallow water and poor flushing, and have ignored existing regulations for sulphides and copper.
Strike three. They should be out.
Now they hope to improve their image by helping to fund a study designed to produce positive results. Dr. Jon Grant of Dalhousie will take five years and $1.6 million to prove what he has already stated. Nothing has been mentioned about pesticides, antibiotics and the lethal virus. He also assumes that because the major volume of a bay does not exhibit the waste, that it is not affected. Does Dr. Grant think the various species in the bay remain stationary and don’t go near the cages?
Not likely, but ignoring this reality guarantees a favourable conclusion; the company looks good and so does Dalhousie.
Dr. Jonathan Grant
You’ve been urged to boycott open-pen farmed fish many times before. This announcement of the research grant to Dalhousie should not only cement that need, but also discourage support for the university.
Expanded biosecurity for farmed salmon December 23, 2013 Tasmanian Primary Industries Minister Bryan Green says almost 1 and a half million dollars will be spent on upgrading laboratories at Mount Pleasant near Launceston to secure the salmon industry. Bryan Green says research will be carried out at the expanded facility on disease and problems with the salmon industry which is expanding at a great rate in Tasmania.
Claudette Bethune: “Oh, so the big expansion is done first...then the research on the impact. Sounds familiar, and asking for forgiveness is just so much easier than permission to do something wrong!”
The Minister says the work would accelerate and broaden the scope of vaccine and diagnostic research in the salmon industry and will keep pace with growth in salmon farming. A major expansion of the salmon industry is underway on the West Coast of Tasmania with approval given for a salmon hub near Strahan.
AQUACULTURE INDUSTRY WITH blinders toward the abyss Original article HERE - translated from Norwegian to English December 19, 2013
Legacy â€“ February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 â€“ Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems It is tragicomic to see how Are Kviststad (Communications Director, FHL) has lavished their motdebattanter in derogatory terms, picked from primary school adjective vocabulary when he ever run out of substantive arguments, in the last weeks of farming debate in Bergens Tidende. Kviststad not many reasonable arguments to use either. He seems simply disillusioned. Is he possibly about to discover that his somewhat pompous perception of aquaculture importance to the national economy is beginning to unravel? Norway's second largest export industry, as the seafood industry likes to call itself accounted for approximately 2.5% of Norwegian exports in 2011. Aquaculture industry company taxes in the same year amounted to follow SSB at 623 million, accounting for 0.21% of total corporation tax in Norway. When 754 breeding companies including second income pays as much in taxes as Agder Energi, it tells a lot about how little farming industry actually contributes. They are far more productive in terms of sewage discharge, which is equivalent to 20 million people. It is unlikely that this situation will persist. Today's environmentally-destructive fish farming in open notmerder can expect more reefs that lurk in the sea. Some are visible, others are not. One of the biggest dangers for the Norwegian aquaculture industry, is paradoxically enough environmentally friendly technology, which is already in full use in foreign farms. Current technology for closed aquaculture makes it namely possible to produce farmed salmon in closed systems, with full control of what is released by pathogenic viruses and bacteria, in the collection of sewage, at competitive prices. More closed aquaculture facilities will generate substantial environmental benefits. The 400 million farmed salmon that will always be in breeding cages along the coast, annually produces amazing 3 million tons of sewage nedgjĂ¸dsler fjords and making life intolerable for aquatic life. Innberegnet drains include 15,000 tons of phosphorus that can be collected and used as fertilizer in agriculture, where phosphorus has been lacking for years . The remaining biomass can be used for CO2-neutral combustion. The aquaculture industry enjoys strong political support in Parliament to continue current operations. This proves the lack of environmental standards from our politicians. The result remains a comprehensive environmental impact on the marine diversity. To date, over 120 rivers closed to salmon fishing. Most are located in Hordaland and Nordland, which also produced the most farmed salmon. Unfortunately, the sea fisheries of anadromous salmonids in these counties in 2012 was only reduced to respectively 0% and 2.7% of the catch in 1984. In Hardanger Fjord where we have the densest concentration of farms, is 10 by 12 rivers closed to salmon fishing. Most of these rivers would be saved by the imposition of closed facilities. Despite major environmental advantages associated with closed aquaculture continues Kviststad and FHL with his rhetoric. Open notmerder with free flow of water, bacteria, chemicals, heavy metals, viruses and other leave cabinets are out in the open, without farmers pay a single penny in sewer fee, and without the other coastal residents are listened to. Fjords where it is established farms granted to the shrimp and cod. Sei that eat waste feed from fish farms are destroyed meat quality. The term "Pelletssei" is not just the name of a Norwegian website , it has unfortunately become an everyday expression of unhappy fishermen along the coast of Norway.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems Today's production regime also entails serious consequences for the farmers themselves. In NordTrøndelag, Nordland and Hordaland lost aquaculture in the fall control of sea lice, which developed resistance to all known treatments. "Panserlus" was a new term. FSA was forced to tvangspålegge harvest, with major economic losses accounted for the industry. In addition to this, took an explosive infection of AGD / AGS (Amoeba Gill disease) in Norwegian fish farms. The disease has previously resulted in very heavy casualties in the Scottish aquaculture industry and helped to reduce production there by 10000 tonnes from 2011 to 2012. Rising production costs mean that more and more farmers report their concern. Industries red numbers would have been far more extensive if the price per kilo of farmed salmon had remained on average 28 kr, and not risen to today's unanticipated level of nearly 50 kr. Farming in closed systems are becoming cheaper as the technology developed. Langsand Salmon expects to achieve production of 24-25 U.S. $ / kg when it increases the capacity of 8000 tons. Given that the Norwegian aquaculture industry currently produces 25-30 U.S. $ / kg, and the production cost per unit in all probability will increase proportionally with the envisaged increase in production, see the prospects for open notmerder along the Norwegian coast dark. The advantage of both land-and sea-based closed containment, is that farmed salmon can be produced anywhere in the world. What happens to the Norwegian aquaculture industry as Russia, China, Japan, USA and EU produces his fish to lower production costs and saves shipping costs, as to Asia amounted to 15-18 U.S. $ / kg? The only logical answer is that Norwegian fish farming industry with its current operating regime of equal competitive opportunity as a moribund shrimp in hydrogen peroksidbad. The process has already begun. Many land-based fish farms in operation, and more and more being built. Certainly, the overall production only a few tens of thousand tons, but it's going to happen a tremendous increase in the coming years. To produce 1 million tonnes of farmed salmon annually with today's technology, there is only an area of 4 square kilometers. The aquaculture industry occupies today 420 square kilometers of the best fishing areas along the coast. The drawbacks of current notmerder is unacceptable, and it is very plentiful along the coast of Norway who look forward to the production of farmed salmon moved to the markets in the aquaculture industry should operate. It will also save the climate for annual emissions of 2.5 million tonnes of CO2 due to air freight.
Unless aquaculture manage to cough up a secret method to produce farmed salmon to 15-20 euros a kilo, the future looks bright for our coast. Let's just hope upheaval happening faster than the Norwegian aquaculture industry manages to destroy our fjords.
Nearly 70,000 farmed salmon on the run in Bømlo Original translated from Norwegian to English January 1, 014 68,000 farmed salmon escaped from a facility in Bømlo at the start of December. The company has so far no explanation on how it happened. In a press release Norway Royal Salmon (NRS) informed that only 347 fish of the escaped salmon were from Klungsholmen plant due to the bad weather on 7 December. A count 20 December showed that the missing was 68,009 farmed salmon. - The Company has initiated a full review of equipment and procedures for detecting a causal relationship, the report says. At the same time, the Company is strongly sorry for what has happened."
The farmed salmon and its critics December 31, 2013
Norwegian fish farming companies are global market leaders. The listed company Marine Harvest is the largest salmon producer in the world. In the Canadian province of British Columbia resistance to the salmon farmer in Europe is growing. For the aquaculture often have harmful effects on their surroundings.
Skivebom of Kviststad (Ed. This article was translated from Norwegian to English via Google translate) DEBATE: Why does the noise on the extension of existing if the industry is so spotlessly clean as the industry claims? December 13, 2013
In IMR report associated with risk assessment of Norwegian aquaculture for 2012, so recognizing IMR that there are several uncertainties in terms of the consequences of the discharge of sewage and eutrophication of the sea floor. A somewhat nicer word for sewer is "nutrients" and section chief Anne Sundby the time CPA acknowledged in Dagbladet 24 March 2010 that nutrient remains nutrients, whether it comes from fish or humans. She also expressed concern over the level of aquaculture accounted for after seeing underwater photos from a farming locality where hydrogen sulfide and methane gas bubbling up from the bottom sediments. Several thousand tons The former minor point release from cages where it stood a few hundred tons of fish, has today evolved into emissions from sites of several thousand tons. The result is crumbling piles of sewage, causing a lifeless bottom. The industry has performed the argument that they have added more power localities exposed to, but unfortunately this results in that it spreads the sewers on a far larger area. Are Kviststad should also know as well as I that we sill fjords along the Norwegian coast from Rogaland and Finnmark up with very limited water exchange in the lower water layers. They soon endangered fjords and coastal fishermen, who barely had a voice in this debate whatsoever, reports virtually empty fish fjords as well as major changes to previous good fishing grounds and spawning areas. Many will also have their use soiled with mud from the farms, and the sign while a significant increase in algal growth. This can obviously be linked to eutrophication.
Legacy â€“ February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 â€“ Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems The result is crumbling piles of sewage, causing a lifeless bottom Questionable podium When the emissions from fish farms naturally when the level was harvested last year represent three times the weight of the population? Industry and not least our former Fisheries Minister Lisbeth BergHansen (Ap) has performed in his argument that the area of the total breeding localities along the Norwegian coast equivalent area of Oslo Airport. It tells me a lot about the enormous environmental industry has with the current biomass in the sea at existing sites. In conjunction with today's farming activity, Norway is the country that emits most nitrogen and phosphorus in the ocean in Europe. A very questionable podium if you ask me. Emissions are limited not only to sewage and waste feed. In connection with the impregnation of nets with copper industry is a copper emission of over 1,000 tons out into the sea. An irresponsible use of anti-parasitic and drug residues contained in waste feed and feces in addition to this. No strict monitoring The so-called strict environmental monitoring of the certification companies are not correct. The socalled MOM B surveys to monitor and investigate the sites contain obvious weaknesses, and Fisheries is now in the process of revising and improving this study. An interesting observation in this context is that several of these companies, which otherwise do not need any accreditation, are either owned by industry or individuals who have strong loyalties to the industry. I confronted fisheries director Liv Holmefjord about this at a seminar organized by the Fisheries does in ours, in which she acknowledged the problem and concluded that while "it was important to be open." Political and academic policy-controlled The numbers Are Kviststad refers to SINTEF aquaculture comes from a strong political and academic policy driven institution, which last year presented a survey of the Norwegian aquaculture industry could quintuple forward to 2050. When the current production volume of over 1.2 million tonnes creates major environmental consequences, then this vision irresponsible. There is however a major problem that many agencies and institutions are strongly controlled by our government, where growth goes ahead responsibly and especially sustainability. My employment of the 4,000 FTEs are directly employed in the industry, I have obtained from SSB, and they write from 2011. In that year helped the entire industry to the community with an offset corporation tax of NOK 623 million, it is about half the Nesodden contributed the same year. As mentioned in previous posts, then all industries synergy effects for other industries. However, it seems that the aquaculture industry has one somewhat inflated self-image, where the big winners are our new "petty kings" who have taken their place in our public commons. When we now look at the dire consequences this has for fjord-and coastal fishermen, local residents, cottagers and obviously also tourism, so it is highly appropriate to ask the question about the way today's farming industry operated at the store for the nation Norway in the future. We gamble with some of the most valuable things we have been awarded as a nation, and it is Norwegian coast, fjords and especially salmon rivers with anadromous fish. The documentation that we are about to lose a lot of this is overwhelming, and my question to Are Kviststad becomes: Why escalate the uproar over the creation of new fish farms, not to mention the expansion of existing if the industry is so spotlessly clean as you claim?
A farm near Oksen Marine Harvest, Norway
Pesticides: farmed salmon passes between the cracks Original Article translated from French to English December 18, 2013 A jet spray, then another few meters away. The movement is fast but repeat a salmon leaps out of the water and falls into a foam wreath, joining his fellow beneath the surface. Tore Midttveit watches over them like milk on the fire. "Right now, they weigh around 1.5 kg, 600 grams for children" , he explains guiding the red hull of the boat in the drizzle. They are 800,000 salmon in the five circular threads of the farm Oksen, resting on the gray waters of the North Sea, on the west coast of Norway.
Legacy â€“ February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 â€“ Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems A booming industry Livestock owned by Marine Harvest, the world's leading salmon producer and figurehead of a thriving industry: supported by strong demand, Norwegian salmon production has tripled in size in ten years, reaching 1.2 million tonnes in 2012, according to figures from the Norwegian Ministry of Fisheries . But this development is not without consequences: many environmental activists denounce the environmental and health impacts of livestock. Kurt Oddekalv is one of them. The offices of his organization, the Green Warriors of Norway, settled on the banks of Bergen. On his boat painted a giant orca, the activist travels around the fjords, where are located some 900 salmon farms in the country. And there is little in the shade to describe the practices of the industry. Fish farms? Of "concentration camps" for fish. Farmed salmon? "The most toxic food in the world." Exaggeration? Certainly. But amidst shock formulas, Kurt knows Oddekalv shoot straight. Shock treatments in the nets In 2010, a report by his organization showed a lackluster practice: the use in livestock farming of two very toxic to marine life, diflubenzuron and teflubenzuron. These substances were reintroduced in 2009 in Norway to fight against sea lice, a parasite that proliferates in salmon farms. At the time, Bruno Le Maire, Minister of Agriculture, who was arrested by a documentary broadcast on France 3 had expressed concern about this practice is forbidden in the French aquaculture. In vain: the Norwegian government had argued that it was perfectly legal on his land. Since then, nothing has changed. After a decline in 2011, the use of these substances has taken: 1611 kilos of diflubenzuron were dumped on farms in 2012, according to the Norwegian Ministry of Health . What treat 38,000 tonnes of fish, crustaceans and kill many swimming around ... "We very rarely use these treatments" Farmers themselves remain discreet about it. "We very rarely use these treatments," says Gordon Ritchie , Vice President of Marine Harvest for Health fish, which prefers to describe at length the other methods used, as these fish " suckers "cleaning wrasses dropped amid salmon. For men, the risk diflubenzuron and teflubenzuron is a priori limited to: studies conducted in the past on rats have found a low toxicity, says the European Medicines Agency (link in English) . Regulatory delays between administration and harvesting fish also enable to ensure that diflubenzuron and his little brother does not end up in the consumer's plate. This is not the case of other products: Analyses completed annually by the Norwegian authorities (the results are available online ) to ensure compliance with European standards salmon reveal eg salmon fillets of breeding the presence of two other anti-sea lice treatments, emamectin and cypermethrin.
Legacy â€“ February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 â€“ Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems And veterinary treatment are only part of the problem. Transformed into vegetarian carnivores With the depletion of fish stocks, farmers have gradually introduced into the base of this carnivore an increasing proportion of plant foods from intensive agriculture, especially corn and soy. While in the 1990s, farmed salmon were fed more than 80% of ingredients from fish, this proportion dropped to less than 45% today, according to a report by Marine Harvest (PDF ) . This substitution has certain advantages: it preserves wild fish stocks and reduces the exposure of farmed fish to environmental contaminants , including dioxins and PCBs. But it also exposes more salmon to other types of contaminants: pesticides. Problem: Regulatory sometimes seems to have a train delay ... The example is emblematic of organochlorine pesticides. Recognized as persistent organic pollutants, likely deleterious effects on health, they were gradually banned in the European agriculture, but continue to contaminate our food chain. Limited everywhere except in fish pesticides To limit the exposure of consumers to these pesticides, the European Commission has established maximum residue limits (MRL), that is to say, the maximum level permitted in hundreds of foods: fruits and vegetables, cereals, meat, seeds and various spices. They are compiled in the database of the European Commission pesticides (in English) . But farmed fish escapes curiously this regulation: no maximum residue limit is applied for a number of pesticides, including organochlorines. Only the quantities contained in the feed are regulated. Why this exception? Contacted by FranceTV info, DG Health and Consumers of the European Commission, which has authority on the subject says that MRLs for fish "will be established once the proper methodology will be available." Some of these pesticides such as DDT, are nevertheless prohibited in European agriculture since 1986. Ceilings statements "to support the evolution of the industry" DDT at least he has the good taste to be a contaminant endangered. This is not the case of endosulfan, another pesticide banned in 2005 only in Europe. "Endosulfan is still used in some parts of the world, exporting foodstuffs and animal feed to Europe " , says NIFES (in English) , the Norwegian National Institute of Nutrition Research and fish. Include: farmed salmon, whose diet is heavily imported soy and corn, are entitled to their ration of endosulfan. Better, the European Commission has to raise the maximum allowable for that substance in food for fish, based on studies ... produced by Norway limit.EU authorities, it is "support the evolution of the industry towards more sustainable development" .
Escaped farmed salmon and trout in Chile… Read entire article HERE
This extensive, rather thick mat of foam floated off West Green Harbour earlier this week in Jordan Bay where two open pen salmon farming sites are located. Residents have been photographing the sea scum and want to know more about it.
Sea scum in Jordan Bay worries residents Fisheries official says foam in ocean ‘natural’ after storms December 18, 2013 YARMOUTH — More mats of sea scum have been seen floating in Jordan Bay this week, and that has some folks wondering where the substance is coming from. A resident living on the eastern side of the bay said Wednesday he saw a large clot of sea foam and wondered if it was related to aquaculture operations. A resident on the distant western shore of the bay said earlier this week that sea scum has appeared there a few times since midsummer. “It’s not foam. It’s actually something that you can scoop up with a spoon,” Sindy Horncastle said.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems Private testing revealed it was mineral oil. Mineral oil, Horncastle said, may be used in the aquaculture industry in medicines or treatments. A resident on the other side of Jordan Bay who asked to remain anonymous said he photographed a large mat of sea scum. “I have seen that stuff before,” he said. “It was a massive quantity (Monday). I haven’t seen it like that before. “This is a huge concern. “I can’t imagine why suddenly this stuff appears on the water.” Cooke Aquaculture spokeswoman Nell Halse said Wednesday the company does not know where the foam is coming from. “We had high winds and heavy seas on the weekend, and it is normal for these conditions to generate sea foam,” she said. A provincial Fisheries & Aquaculture Department source concurred Wednesday that it’s “absolutely natural” to find large accumulations of foam, scum and debris in the ocean after storms. Halse, Cooke’s vice-president of communications, said “our farms are a half to (a) full kilometre from shore, so it is hard to imagine that anyone could determine that foam on the shore comes from the farms.” She said more needs to be known about the substance before the media reports again on unfounded allegations. “Before the fish farm came in, I’d never seen anything like that,” said the resident from the eastern side of the bay. Since fish farming began, he said, he’s seen smaller quantities of similar-looking stuff floating near shore. “But I’ve certainly never seen the huge mass that I saw a couple of days ago,” the man said.
Halse said in an email Wednesday that “we are not using any chemicals or pesticides on the farms in Jordan Bay.” She said vaccines are administered in the hatchery long before any fish are transferred to the farms. Halse said if fish farm crews are able to locate the substance in question, they will test it. The province has also said it will test any foam that washes up again. A Fisheries & Aquaculture employee was unable to find a sufficiently large sample of the foam during a previous visit.
Oban Times: “Mull Fish Farm Sea Lice Problem Revealed” December 19, 2013
13 major clean energy breakthroughs of 2013 While the news about climate change seems to get worse every day, the rapidly improving technology, declining costs, and increasing accessibility of clean energy is the true bright spot in the march toward a zero-carbon future. 2013 had more clean energy milestones than we could fit on one page, but here are 13 of the key breakthroughs that happened this year.
Using salt to keep producing solar power even when the sun goes down. Helped along by the Department of Energy’s loan program, Solana’s massive 280 megawatt (MW) solar plant came online in Arizona this October, with one unique distinction: the plant will use a ‘salt battery’ that will allow it to keep generating electricity even when the sun isn’t shining. Not only is this a first for the United States in terms of thermal energy storage, the Solana plant is also the largest in the world to use to use parabolic trough mirrors to concentrate solar energy. Electric vehicle batteries that can also power buildings. Nissan’s groundbreaking “VehicleTo-Building” technology will enable companies to regulate their electricity needs by tapping into EVs plugged into their garages during times of peak demand. Then, when demand is low, electricity flows back to the vehicles, ensuring they’re charged for the drive home. With Nissan’s system, up to six electric vehicles can be plugged into a building at one time. As more forms renewable energy is added to the grid, storage innovations like this will help them all work together to provide reliable power.
The next generation of wind turbines is a gamechanger. May of 2013 brought the arrival of GE’s Brilliant line of wind turbines, which bring two technologies within the turbines to address storage and intermittency concerns. An “industrial internet” communicates with grid operators, to predict wind availability and power needs, and to optimally position the turbine. Grid-scale batteries built into the turbines store power when the wind is blowing but the electricity isn’t needed — then feed it into the grid as demand comes along, smoothing out fluctuations in electricity supply. It’s a more efficient solution to demand peaks than fossil fuel plants, making it attractive even from a purely business aspect. Fifty-nine of the turbines are headed for Michigan, and two more will arrive in Texas. Solar electricity hits grid parity with coal. A single solar photovoltaic (PV) cell cost $76.67 per watt back in 1977, then fell off a cliff. Bloomberg Energy Finance forecast the price would reach $0.74 per watt in 2013 and as of the first quarter of this year, they were actually selling for $0.64 per watt. That cuts down on solar’s installation costs — and since the sunlight is free, lower installation costs mean lower electricity prices. And in 2013, they hit grid parity with coal: In February, a Southwestern utility agreed to purchase electricity from a New Mexico solar project for less than the going rate for a new coal plant. Unsubsidized solar power reached grid parity in countries such as Italy and India. And solar installations have boomed worldwide and here in America, as the lower module costs have drivendown installation prices. Advancing renewable energy from ocean waves. With the nation’s first commercial, gridconnected underwater tidal turbine successfully generating renewable energy off the coast of Maine for a year, the Ocean Renewable Power Company (ORPC) has its sights set on big growth. The project has invested more than $21 million into the Maine economy and an environmental assessment in March found no detrimental impact on the marine environment. With help from the Department of Energy, the project is set to deploy two more devices in 2014.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems In November, ORPC was chosen to manage a wave-energy conversion project in remote Yakutat, Alaska. And a Japanese delegation visited the project this year as the country seeks to produce 30 percent of its total power offshore by 2030.
Harnessing ocean waves to produce fresh water. This year saw the announcement of Carnegie Wave Energy’s upcoming desalination plant near Perth, Australia. It will use the company’s underwater buoy technology to harness ocean wave force to pressurize the water, cutting out the fossil-fuel-powered electric pumps that usually force water through the membrane in the desalination process. The resulting system — “a world first” — will be carbon-free, and efficient in terms of both energy and cost. Plan details were completed in October, the manufacturing contract was awarded in November, and when it’s done, the plant will supply 55 billion litters of fresh drinking water per year. Ultra-thin solar cells that break efficiency records. Conversion efficiency is the amount of light hitting the solar cell that’s actually changed into electricity, and it’s typically 18.7 percent and 24 percent. But Alta Devices, a Silicon Valley solar manufacturer, set a new record of 30.8 percent conversion efficiency this year. Its method is more expensive, but the result is a durable and extremely thin solar cell that can generate a lot of electricity from a small surface area. That makes Alta’s cells perfect for small and portable electronic devices like smartphones and tablets, and the company is in discussions to apply them to mobile phones, smoke detectors, door alarms, computer watches, remote controls, and more.
Batteries that are safer, lighter, and store more power. Abundant and cost-effective storage technology will be crucial for a clean energy economy — no where more so than with electric cars. But right now batteries don’t always hold enough charge to power automobiles for extended periods, and they add significantly to bulk and cost. But at the start of 2013, researchers at Oak Ridge National Laboratory successfully demonstrated a new lithium-ion battery technology that can store far more power in a much smaller size, and that’s safer and less prone to shorts. They used nanotechnology to create an electrolyte that’s solid, ultra-thin, and porous, and they also combined the approach with lithium-sulfur battery technology, which could further enhance costeffectiveness. New age offshore wind turbines that float. Offshore areas are prime real estate for wind farms, but standard turbines require lots of construction and are limited to waters 60 meters deep or less. But Statoil, the Norwegian-based oil and gas company, began work this year on a hub of floating wind turbines off the coast of Scotland. The turbines merely require a few cables to keep them anchored, and can be placed in water up to 700 meters. That could vastly expand the amount of economically practical offshore wind power. The hub off Scotland will be the largest floating wind farm in the world — and two floating turbines are planned off the coast of Fukushima, Japan, along with the world’s first floating electrical substation.
Cutting electricity bills with direct current power. Alternating current (AC), rather than direct current (DC) is the dominant standard for electricity use. But DC current has its own advantages: It’s cheap, efficient, works better with solar panels and wind turbines, and doesn’t require adaptors that waste energy as heat. Facebook, JPMorgan, Sprint, Boeing, and Bank of America have all built datacenters that rely on DC power, since DC-powered datacenters are 20 percent more efficient, cost 30 percent less, and require 25 to 40 percent less floorspace. On the residential level, new USB technology will soon be able to deliver 100 watts of power, spreading DC power to ever more low voltage personal electronics, and saving homes inefficiency costs in their electricity bill. Commercial production of clean energy from plant waste is finally here. Ethanol derived from corn, once held up as a climate-friendly alternative to gasoline, is under increasing fire. Many experts believe it drives up food prices, and studies disagree on whether it actually releases any less carbon dioxide when its full life cycle is accounted for. Cellulosic biofuels, promise to get around those hurdles, and 2013 may be when the industry finally turned the corner. INOES Bio’s cellulosic ethanol plant in Florida and KiOR’s cellulosic plant in Mississippi began commercial production this year. Two more cellulosic plants are headed for Iowa, and yet another’s being constructed in Kansas. The industry says 2014′s proposed cellulosic fuel mandate of 17 million gallons will be easily met. Innovative financing bringing clean energy to more people. In D.C., the first ever propertyassessed clean energy (PACE) project allows investments in efficiency and renewables to be repaid through a special tax levied on the property, which lowers the risk for owners. Crowdfunding for clean energy projects made major strides bringing decentralized renewable energy to more people — particularly the world’s poor — and Solar Mosaic is pioneering crowdfunding to pool community investments in solar in the United States. California figured out how to allow customers who aren’t property owners or who don’t have a suitable roof for solar — that’s 75 percent of the state — to nonetheless purchase up to 100 percent clean energy for their home or business. Minnesota advanced its community solar gardens program, modeled after Colorado’s successful initiative. And Washington, D.C., voted to bring in virtual net metering, which allows people to buy a portion of a larger solar or wind project, and then have their portion of the electricity sold or credited back to the grid on their behalf, reducing the bill. Wind power is now competitive with fossil fuels. “We’re now seeing power agreements being signed with wind farms at as low as $25 per megawatt-hour,” Stephen Byrd, Morgan Stanley’s head of North American Equity Research for Power & Utilities and Clean Energy, told the Columbia Energy Symposium in late November. Byrd explained that wind’s ongoing variable costs are negligible, which means an owner can bring down the cost of power purchase agreements by spreading the upfront investment over as many units as possible. As a result, larger wind farms in the Midwest are confronting coal plants in the Powder River Basin with “fairly vicious competition.” And even without the production tax credit, wind can still undercut many natural gas plants. A clear sign of its viability, wind power currently meets 25 percent of Iowa’s energy needs and is projected to reach a whopping 50 percent by 2018.
Gov. Jay Inslee, second from right, chairs Monday's climate workgroup meeting in Olympia.
Majority at Olympia climate hearing make case for less fossil fuel December 13, 2013 Climate scientists may have reached a consensus about the danger of human contributions to climate change, but getting a political consensus for how to respond will take some time at the Washington state Capitol. Friday’s third and final hearing before Gov. Jay Inslee’s climate workgroup elicited an array of messages from the environmental movement, business groups, the oil industries and a slew of individuals — including two school kids from Seattle who are part of a project planting trees and said they can’t afford to wait for action.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems Most of the roughly 50 people who spoke at the three-hour hearing at the Capitol urged the bipartisan workgroup — which has two legislators from each major party and Inslee as its non-voting chairman — to recommend that the Legislature take immediate steps to reduce carbon pollution from fossil fuels, which is implicated in global warming. But a panel of business interests led by the Association of Washington Business cautioned that putting a cost on carbon — whether by a cap and trade system, carbon tax or low-carbon fuel rules to promote more use of alternative fuels — could disadvantage the state’s economy. “Washington does not represent a state spewing emissions from industries,’’ said Brandon Houskeeper of the AWB. He called for national — not state-by-state — action on greenhouse gases and said Washington already emits less carbon pollution per capita than all but eight other states while showing the fifth highest use of public transit. But most others testifying — with notable exceptions of two climate-change deniers who said the state should do nothing — wanted Washington to aim higher. There was strong support for trying to meet goals for greenhouse gas reductions that were set by the Legislature in 2008 but won’t be met in 2020 without policy changes. Mary Moore of the state League of Women Voters said her group’s members “heartily support efforts” outlined by Inslee to move the state closer to the emission goals. She said they also support efforts to keep spurring use of alternative fuel sources under Initiative 937’s mandate that utilities add alternative energy such as wind and solar to their portfolios. Inslee’s workgroup is scheduled to adopt recommendations next Wednesday morning to send to the 2014 Legislature. But few — including Inslee — expect anything but two minority reports produced by the two Democrats and two Republicans on the panel. The two Republicans — Rep. Shelly Short of Addy and Sen. Doug Ericksen of Ferndale — want a slower approach that could use nuclear power as a replacement for fossil fuels. They also say it may be necessary to loosen the state’s emissions targets, and both argue that the costs of action may be too great and benefits too little. Inslee and the two Democrats on the panel — Sen. Kevin Ranker of Orcas Island and Rep. Joe Fitzgibbon of Seattle — want to move ahead to start designing a cap-and-trade system, phase out use of Montana coal power, and promote “smart” buildings that use less energy and clean energy such as wind and solar. “Simply put, we must act to protect our environment,” Inslee told the committee. “The environment won’t wait and neither should we.’’ Thurston County Commissioner Karen Valenzuela, a Democrat, urged the state to go with the proposals outlined by Inslee and other Democrats on the workgroup. So did Lacey City Council member Cynthia Pratt, who urged a phase-out of coal power and efforts to reduce wood burning in fireplaces and limit idling cars in traffic. Doug Howell of the Sierra Club urged support for Inslee’s proposal to start devising a cap-and-trade system for limiting carbon pollution and action to pressure Puget Sound Energy into phasing out its use of coal power imported from Colstrip, Mont.
The TransAlta coal-fired power plant in Centralia continued to be the largest source of greenhouse gas emissions, releasing nearly 4.2 million metric tons of greenhouse gases, or about one-fifth of total emissions reported to the EPA. The facility, however, saw a 26 percent drop in emissions between 2011 and 2012. Pictured in this 2010 photo are Dr. Steve Gilbert from Physicians for Social Responsibility, Mark Quinn representing the Washington Wildlife Federation and Doug Howell of the Sierra Club (left-right).
Power Plants, Refineries Top Carbon Pollution December 30, 2013
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems Power plants and refineries continue to rank among the biggest emitters of greenhouse gas emissions in Washington in 2012, according to the latest data reported to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. In 2012, 90 large sources in the state reported releasing a total of 19.2 million metric tons of carbon dioxide, methane and other greenhouse gases, about an 8 percent drop from the year before, the data shows. The TransAlta coal-fired power plant in Centralia continued to be the largest source of greenhouse gas emissions, releasing nearly 4.2 million metric tons of greenhouse gases, or about one-fifth of total emissions reported to the EPA. The facility, however, saw a 26 percent drop in emissions between 2011 and 2012. BP’s Cherry Point Refinery was the second-highest single source of emissions, followed by Shell Puget Sound Refinery in Anacortes, Tesoro Refinery in Anacortes, Alcoa Intalco Works in Ferndale, Phillips 66 refinery in Ferndale and Puget Sound Energy’s Mint Farm natural-gas fired power plant in Longview, Wash. Greenhouse gas emission released through power generation and other human activities contribute to climate change, and state officials say mandatory reporting of those emissions is a crucial first step in reducing pollution. It helps the state “figure out what we need to do going forward,” said Neil Caudill with the Department of Ecology. The data may play an important role as state officials and other debate whether to put a price on carbon emissions through a carbon tax or cap and trade system. Gov. Jay Inslee has proposed capping carbon pollution as one way to meet the state’s carbon-reducing goals. A 2008 state law called for Washington to return to 1990 greenhouse gas emissions levels by 2020, and for greater reductions beyond that. In 2010, Washington emitted 96 million metric tons of carbon dioxide, up from about 88.4 million a decade earlier. Facilities that emit 25,000 metric tons or more per year of GHGs are required to submit annual reports to the EPA. A Washington state law requires facilities that emit more than 10,000 metric tons of greenhouse gases per year to report their pollution. For the first time, those sources are reporting their 2012 emissions to the Department of Ecology. Caudill said he estimates about 200 sources will be required to report under the state law. Ecology is currently processing and verifying those reports, which were due in November. The department plans to publish the data in coming months. In 2012, the state’s five refineries accounted for the largest amount of carbon pollution reported to the EPA by industrial sector, just slightly more than power plants. TransAlta, a Canada-based company, has agreed to shut down one of its coal-burning units in Centralia by the end of 2020, and the final one by 2025. The largest emitting industries include power plants, refineries, landfills and pulp and paper mills.
Energy production : Oil, Coal, Hydropower, Natural Gas, Solar, Wind
The Sound of Silence - Exxon Valdez Oil Spill Watch, Listen, Learn HERE
The Nature of Things - Black Wave: The Legacy of the Exxon Valdez Watch, Listen, Learn HERE
New federal study: Oilsands bitumen sinks when mixed January 14, 2014
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems VANCOUVER – A new federal government study has concluded that diluted bitumen — the product that would be transported by the Northern Gateway pipeline — sinks in seawater when battered by waves and mixed with sediments. However, when free of sediments, the molasses-like crude floats even after evaporation and exposure to light. The report also says that the commercial dispersant, Corexit 9500, used in previous clean-up efforts had a limited effect on dispersing diluted bitumen. The study examined two blends of crude, the Access Western Blend and Cold Lake Blend, which represent the highest volume of bitumen products transported by pipeline in Canada between 2012 and 2013. Conducting research on how the oil would behave in a marine environment was one of the 209 conditions announced by a review panel that approved the proposed Northern Gateway pipeline in December. The pipeline, if approved by the federal government, would carry diluted bitumen from Alberta’s oil sands to tankers on the British Columbia coast.
Editorial Comment: Dangerous and toxic diluted bitumen is the material that would be transported from Alberta’s tar sands via pipelines to Vancouver and Burnaby British Columbia, Portland Maine and the Gulf of Mexico if proposed pipeline projects are approved. The other proposal is to move this product via an aging and problematic rail system. Once to North America’s west coast, east coast and south coast, the dilbit will be transferred to tankers for export to Asian and European markets.
Read Engineers poke holes in Enbridge tanker safety Some of the group’s key concerns are as follows:
provides no justification or documentation for the ‘scaling factors’ they used to calculate the 10% risk of a major spill.
Enbridge’s liability ends when the tankers leave the terminal. Who’s responsible for a spill along the narrow 300 km waterway from Kitimat to the open ocean?
Enbridge’s risk analysis planned for 220 tankers per year through Douglas Channel. New LNG projects will bring that number to over 600.
Federal scientists, testifying during the JRP hearings, say more research is needed on diluted bitumen before they can be sure a cleanup is even possible.
A Year: 45 Fossil Fuel Disasters The Industry Doesn’t Want You To Know About December 17, 2013
While coal, oil, and gas are an integral part of everyday life around the world, 2013 brought a stark reminder of the inherent risk that comes with a fossil-fuel dependent world, with numerous pipeline spills, explosions, derailments, landslides, and the death of 20 coal miners in the U.S. alone. Despite all this, our addiction to fossil fuels will be a tough habit to break. The federal Energy Information Administration in July projected that fossil fuel use will soar across the world in the come decades. Coal — the dirtiest fossil fuel in terms of carbon emissions — is projected to increase by 2.3 percent in coming years. And in December, the EIA said that global demand for oil would be even higher than it had projected, for both this year and next. Here is a look back at some of the fossil fuel disasters that made headlines in 2013, along with several others that went largely unnoticed.
READ ENTIRE CLIMATE PROGRESS ARTICLE HERE
��� Stricter oil-by-rail rules needed after another explosion: critics North Dakota incident this week empties tiny community of Casselton January 1, 2014 A third major explosion involving Bakken shale oil, in North Dakota on Monday night, is eliciting calls for improved safety regulations in both Canada and the U.S. The safe transport of oil by rail has been highlighted as important to B.C. by municipalities and environmentalists because an increasing amount of oil is being delivered by rail here already. There is also the prospect of a major increase in oil-by-rail shipments through B.C. if controversial pipeline projects proposed to carry bitumen to the west coast don’t materialize or are delayed.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems In North Dakota, most of the 2,300 residents of the town of Casselton fled after a train carrying oil collided with another train, setting off a series of explosions engulfing up to 10 cars. Nobody was believed to be hurt, but residents were evacuated because of the possibly of harm from toxic fumes from the fire. The crash on Monday follows the deadly Lac Megantic, Que. incident in July in which an unattended, runaway train exploded and killed 47. A derailment and explosion of an oil train in rural Alabama in November left 11 cars burning. A fourth, smaller incident took place west of Edmonton in October when a CN train carrying oil and liquefied petroleum gas derailed and caught fire. That train was destined for British Columbia. The significant increase in the transport of oil by rail, and the growing evidence that Bakken shale oil is proving itself to be a very explosive commodity, shows that regulations on both sides of the border are not adequate, said Mark Winfield, an associate professor at York University who researches public safety regulation. Transport Canada officials said the government took “immediate action” to improve rail safety and the transportation of dangerous goods across Canada following the Lac Megantic explosion. “The department remains committed to working with our stakeholders to examine all means of improving rail safety and the safe transportation of dangerous goods,” Transport Canada spokeswoman Andrea Moritz said in an email. Among the steps Canada took after the Lac Megantic disaster were a requirement for an increase in staffing on trains transporting tank cars with hazardous goods. Ottawa also introduced tightened rules around unattended trains, and a requirement for rail companies to provide hazardous goods information to municipalities on an annual basis. But that is not enough, said Winfield, calling Ottawa’s measures incremental at best. “There needs to be some very, very serious thinking about the adequacy of the regulatory regime, indeed the extent to which this product can be moved safely,” he said. “This (crash in North Dakota), save for a bit of luck, could have been another Lac Megantic. It was good fortune the derailment happened out of a settlement area, as opposed to the middle of the town. While Bakken shale oil is at issue in the three major explosions, bitumen from the Alberta oilsands is not off the hook, added Winfield. Canadian producers have been trying for years to deliver oil to the B.C. coast to open up new markets in Asia for bitumen from the Alberta oilsands. Winfield noted that one of the concerns with transporting oil by rail is that the oil separates, with the most volatile liquids rising to the top. That is the case with Bakken shale oil, and also could be a problem with Alberta oilsands bitumen that is thinned with condensate, said Winfield.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems “We don’t know — we need to investigate more,” he said. The railway industry has cited its 99.9977-per-cent safety record in transporting hazardous goods by tanker car. But Greenpeace climate and energy coordinator Keith Stewart said the industry is not taking into account the massive increase in oil-by-railcar traffic to 400,000 this year, from 10,000 in 2008. And while oil-cars used to be spaced in trains, now there are large 70-or-more unit trains made up entirely of oil-cars, which increases the safety risk, said Stewart. “The regulation hasn’t kept up with the changes in movement of oil by rail, and I think it would irresponsible of governments not to have a major revamp of those regulations,” said Stewart. While Greenpeace is neither in favour of increased oil-by-rail transport or pipelines, the trains that carry the oil need to be upgraded, said Stewart. While railways such as CN say they are using beefed-up railcars (that include puncture shielding) built after 2011, there is no regulatory requirement in Canada to do so. Stewart noted the Association of American Railroads last November urged the U.S. Department of Transportation to press for improved federal tank-car regulations by requiring all tank-cars used to transport flammable liquids to be retrofitted or phased out, and new cars built to more stringent standards. Oil carried by rail is on the increase in B.C. Transport Canada estimates almost 1,200 carloads of crude oil and petroleum products were sent to B.C. in 2012, up from fewer than 50 in 2011. Both CN and CP deliver oil by rail for Chevron’s refinery in Burnaby. Up to 14 cars a day are delivered by CP directly to the refinery, following the West Coast Express route that runs through built-up urban communities from Mission to Port Moody. “CP takes safety extremely seriously and our railway meets or exceeds regulations and rules, which includes a multi-faceted track inspection and maintenance program,” company spokesman Ed Greenberg said in an email. CN delivers oil by rail to a transloading facility in Langley, where trucks then take the oil to the Burnaby refinery. CN also delivers oil to New Westminster, where it is interchanged with U.S. railroads. CN has adopted new U.S. rules for its Canadian operations that require reduced speeds for hazardous goods such as oil. It is also assessing risks in urban areas, and is involved in the review of oil-tanker design with the Association of American Railroads. “The reality is very clear: CN does far more than what the regulatory standard calls for, but we remain committed to look for what more we can do to continue to further improve safety,” CN spokesman Mark Hallman said in an email.
oil trains crossing Oregon, Washington, state oversight gaps raise questions in wake of accidents January 11, 2014
Ship crude oil on a tanker, barge or through a pipeline in Oregon and Washington, and you’d better get ready for paperwork. It helps ensure state responders are ready for potentially catastrophic oil spills. You’ll have to tell them where you’re sending the oil. How much. What type it is. When you’ll unload it. Want to avoid the hassle? Just put the oil on a train. With little public discussion, trains hauling potentially explosive crude oil are already passing near schools and through towns in Oregon and Washington, past parks and playgrounds. The oil is being transported under lighter state oversight than if it moved any other way. In fact, oil trains are rolling through parts of the Pacific Northwest where large volumes of oil haven’t moved before -- inland areas that haven’t prepared for major oil spills. In the last seven months, three high-profile explosions on trains in Canada and the United States have focused scrutiny on oil train safety. The worst, a July 6 derailment in Lac-Mégantic, Quebec, killed 47 people and leveled part of the town. The two others, in North Dakota and Alabama, didn’t kill anyone. In strokes of luck, both occurred in undeveloped areas. The blasts happened on rail lines owned by two companies, Burlington Northern Santa Fe and Genesee & Wyoming, that currently move crude oil through Portland, Vancouver, Wash., and to Port Westward near Clatskanie. More may come to a terminal proposed in Vancouver that could accept up to four oil trains a day. Trains are a new way to move crude, the result of an oil boom in North Dakota. Without pipeline capacity, oil producers there have turned to railroads.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems But the North Dakota crude is different; it’s extracted from underground rock formations and is more flammable than traditional crude. The rapid emergence of oil trains, from nearly none in 2008 to at least 110 through Portland last year, caught regulators flatfooted. As officials in both states work to catch up, they’re forced to depend on the voluntary cooperation of secretive railroad companies. Three railroads serving the Portland region refused to tell The Oregonian exactly where they’re hauling crude oil locally. That information could alert neighborhoods in North Portland and Vancouver to risks in their backyards. Regulators are in the dark, too. Though they say they’re encouraged by cooperation from railroads after the July accident in Quebec, environmental officials in both states admit they aren’t as ready as they could be for an oil train accident, in part because information is being shared slowly. Here are six key shortcomings:
The first firefighters on a scene won’t always be able to control, or even attack, oil fires. Rural fire districts in both states have little of the special foam needed to extinguish oil fires. The cavalry could be an hour away or longer. State officials don’t know where oil trains travel each day in Oregon and Washington. They don’t know how many oil trains are here. Tankers and barges transporting oil products into Washington’s coastal refineries and on the Columbia River have to tell the states where, when and what they move. Trains don’t. Railroads maintain emergency caches of containment booms to prevent spills from spreading. But officials in both states don’t know where. The Oregon Department of Environmental Quality doesn’t know, for example, that Union Pacific keeps its emergency caches in Portland, while its trains carry crude throughout the Columbia River Gorge. Oregon and Washington regulators who keep the region ready for oil spills have not yet coordinated their emergency plans with railroads, which maintain separate response plans. That simple step could avoid wasting time in the key moments following an accident. Because of funding shortages, the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality is cutting back on oil spill training for employees. Though oil is increasingly coming through the region on trains, the state doesn’t charge fees to railroads to fund preparedness like it does for ships carrying oil.
Railroad officials promised in November to share their emergency plans and cache locations with state officials in Oregon and Washington. But the information, some of which could be easily relayed by email, hasn’t come. Another oil train has exploded since then. “Where we’re pretty uncomfortable is that it seems to be shrouded in mystery,” said Linda Pilkey-Jarvis, one of the Washington Department of Ecology’s top oil spill preparedness officials. “The fact that we don’t have ready access to the plans doesn’t lead to confidence.”
Officials examine the wreckage from the crash of a train hauling crude oil near Casselton, N.D.
North Dakota blast prompts review of oil train safety A massive explosion after a derailment brings the first broad federal examination of the safety of transporting crude oil by rail, a practice that has grown widespread in recent years. January 2, 2013 A federal safety alert Thursday warned that crude oil flowing out of new fields in North Dakota may be more flammable than expected, a caution that comes several days after a train carrying about 3.5 million gallons of the same oil crashed in the state and set off a massive explosion.
Legacy â€“ February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 â€“ Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems The accident on the BNSF Railway, the fourth such explosion in North America involving crude oil trains, has fed mounting concerns over public safety as the rail industry sharply increases the use of rail to transport surging crude production in North Dakota, Texas and Colorado. Following the latest derailment and crash, which forced the evacuation of more than 1,000 residents from the town of Casselton, the National Transportation Safety Board has launched the nation's first broad examination of the safety of moving petroleum by rail. Trains carrying oil have multiplied across the country as environmental concerns and political maneuvering have delayed approval of a major new pipeline to transport oil to Gulf Coast refineries. The issue may be most crucial for cities in the West, which were often founded and developed by railroads so that main lines go directly through the centers of today's urban areas. Crude oil shipments by rail have shot up 25-fold in the last several years as producers rush oil from newly developing shale fields to market. California alone has seen a fourfold increase over the last year, with current shipments of about 200,000 barrels a month. Refinery operators this summer unveiled a plan to build a rail loading facility in San Luis Obispo County, which could send 100-car oil trains through the densely populated portions of Los Angeles and the Bay Area. The exponential growth and several accidents in the last half year, including one in Quebec that killed 47 residents in July, has prompted the NTSB to examine potential safety hazards, said Robert Sumwalt, an NTSB board member who is one of those overseeing the investigation. Sumwalt said that the agency should have started the review after a similar crash in Alabama in November, but that it was now focused on finding ways to reduce risks. "It has certainly raised our attention and we want to make sure that people living in communities surrounded by railroad traffic are safe," he said. Former NTSB Chairman Jim Hall said a comprehensive review of national policy on carrying crude was long overdue. "It appears this is going to be in our nation's communities for the next decade," Hall said. "With this kind of transportation of hazardous material, there are a whole lot of issues that come to mind, not the least of which is terrorism. You are creating a movable bomb from community to community." The string of rail accidents raises issues similar to those that came out of the Exxon Valdez spill in 1989, which prompted the National Research Council to conduct a broad public policy review, said USC safety expert Najmedin Meshkati. Such a review should have started "on the day after the Quebec accident," he said. The safety alert issued Thursday by the federal Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration warned that oil from North Dakota's Bakken shale fields "may be more flammable than traditional heavy crude."
Legacy â€“ February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 â€“ Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems The agency said it would conduct new testing to determine the gas content, corrosivity, toxicity and flammability of the Bakken crude. The agency, which also regulates tank car safety, said it issued the alert to remind railroads that they are required to properly label the crude, based on three levels of volatility. The North Dakota shipment was already listed as the most volatile. In the accident this week near Casselton, on a cloudy day with the temperature below zero, an eastbound train with 105 tank cars full of crude from the Bakken oil fields slammed into a westbound grain train that had derailed less than a minute earlier. The grain train derailed while it was crossing over a switch at 28 mph. Sumwalt said investigators had found a broken axle from the grain train, though they were trying to determine whether it caused the accident. A single car from the grain train ended up on the eastbound tracks and was struck by the oil train traveling about 42 mph. The two locomotives pulling the oil train were destroyed. The accident occurred about a mile west of the town, which has a population of about 2,500. Elsewhere in the country, "you have rail going through densely populated areas, and that is inherently risky," said Brigham McCown, former chief of the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration. "The oil is going to get to market any way it can. I favor pipelines. They are buried, out of the way, safer and cheaper," he said. Pipeline construction, however, has been sharply opposed by environmental groups. The proposed Keystone XL pipeline from Canada that would serve the Bakken fields has been tied up in a lengthy review by the U.S. State Department. Environmental activists believe that by blocking the pipeline they can restrict the development of the tar-sands oil fields in Alberta. Sumwalt said the NTSB would be searching for ways to improve safety, but one of the most obvious possibilities would be for the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration to adopt an earlier NTSB recommendation for more resilient tank cars. The safety administration began considering strengthening its rules after the deadly accident in Lac-Megantic, Quebec. The accident this week did not result in any deaths or injuries, but it has heightened awareness of the danger. Bill Keppen, a former Burlington Northern safety expert who is now an independent consultant, said one of the most important things for the federal government to address is human error, which accounts for about 44% of rail accidents. Keppen said he would expect the railroad industry to strongly oppose any attempt to reduce speeds of trains carrying hazardous materials. Railroads are free to set their own speed limits. "Velocity is directly proportional to earnings and profits," Keppen said. "A small change in speed can translate to millions of dollars of profit a year." Railroads do not currently have special requirements for training crews carrying hazardous materials, including crude oil.
New Brunswick train that derailed may have included controversial DOT-111 rail cars January 9, 2014 TORONTO — A Canadian investigator said Thursday he has information that some of the tanker cars in a Canadian National Railway train that derailed and caught fire this week were DOT-111s, a model involved in a series of crude-by-rail accidents. It was not clear whether the cars were older models of the DOT-111s, which do not meet stricter safety standards introduced in 2011. “I haven’t actually gone to see the cars. I’ve just received the information that they are [DOT-] 111 type of cars,” said Guy Laporte, the investigator leading the probe by Canada’s Transportation Safety Board, an independent federal agency, into the crash.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems The CN Rail train derailed in New Brunswick on Tuesday night. A total of 19 cars and a locomotive on the 122-car, four-locomotive train came off the rails. Some of them were still burning Thursday. The U.S. National Transportation Safety Board says older models of the DOT-111 are vulnerable to leaks and explosions. The cars have become a focal point in the debate on rail safety regulation as crude-by-rail shipments across the continent surge. While no one was hurt in Tuesday’s accident, the derailment revived memories of a devastating crash last July, when a runaway train carrying light crude from North Dakota’s Bakken region exploded in the heart of the town of Lac-Megantic, Quebec, killing 47. That train included DOT-111 cars. Laporte, pressed further on what kinds of cars were involved in the New Brunswick crash, said CN Rail had made clear the train was carrying crude oil. “[For] the … ones with the crude oil they use the DOT-111, this is the tank car they’re using,” he told a televised briefing in New Brunswick. Laporte said it was too early to say definitively what caused the derailment of the train, which was also carrying liquid petroleum gas. A CN spokesman said preliminary information indicated that a “wheel failure” was the cause. The TSB’s Laporte said that a broken rail had been found at the site of the accident. “Yesterday we found a cracked wheel on a car near the front of the train. This wheel moved on the axle and lost the track gauge resulting in the derailment of that wheel set. We also found a broken rail,” said Laporte, adding that only the front part of the train has been inspected. CN said it was able to gain access to the site of the accident late on Wednesday and was able to move some of the cars that were not on fire overnight. Two cars carrying LPG and one carrying crude were still burning on Thursday. There was also a smaller fire of locomotive fuel, CN said.
DOT - 111
Alberta, BC plan for oil-by-rail in case pipelines fail January 5, 2014
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems VANCOUVER – A task force report has been handed in to the British Columbia and Alberta governments that examines the idea of transporting oilsands’ crude via rail if proposed pipelines don’t get the green light, government documents show. It’s an idea the environmental group ForestEthics calls “underhanded.” It’s a “backdoor way for industry to bring tankers to the coast without the same sort of public oversight or public process that we’ve had around the Enbridge pipeline or would have around the Kinder Morgan pipeline,” said Ben West, campaign director for ForestEthics. Oil-by-rail a back-up for pipelines A joint provincial working group was announced by premiers Christy Clark and Alison Redford in July to develop recommendations related to energy exports and the opening of new export markets for products like bitumen for the two provinces, including pipeline and rail transport. “Rail can be considered a viable alternative to pipeline movement based on costs of transport,” the terms of reference for the group states. If pipelines are not developed, rail will step into the void to deliver bitumen to the West Coast. West said the report raises safety questions, especially in light of two recent high-profile train accidents. Recent derailments, explosions spark fears
Oil transport by rail has become a contentious topic after a train containing crude oil derailed and exploded in Lac-Megantic, Que., in July, killing 47 people, and another train exploded without injuries last month in North Dakota. “Myself and other people were pretty freaked out about what happened there,” West said of the two fiery blasts. The provincial working group was mandated to submit a report to both leaders by the end of December. An Alberta government official did not respond to a question about the completion or release of the report, while an official in Clark’s office said the report is complete but that no date has been set for a public release. CN Rail declined comment. The task force is led by Steve Carr, deputy minister of natural gas development in B.C. and Grant Sprague, deputy minister of energy in Alberta. No one from either ministry could be reached for comment.
Petroleum – Drilled, Refined, Tar Sands, Fracked
Care for some mercury pollution with your tar-sands carnage?
Tar-sands mining in Canada is unleashing mercury pollution January 3, 2014 Drilling for tar-sands oil in Alberta has long been recognized as a driver of climate change, helping to nudge the mercury up in thermometers around the world. Now, it appears that it’s also dousing the Canadian province with straight-up mercury pollution.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems Canadian government researchers have discovered that oil-sands operations have puffed out mercury over 4.7 million acres of northeast Alberta, boosting levels to as much as 16 times higher than background levels. Mercury is a potent poison that’s frequently emitted by mining and fossil-fuel burning. It can harm the brains, hearts, kidneys, lungs, and immune systems of children and adults alike. The Montreal Gazette reports:
“The federal scientists stress the mercury loadings around the oilsands are low compared to the contamination seen in many parts of North America, including southern Ontario and southern Quebec. But they say the mercury is “the No. 1 concern” when it comes to the metal toxins generated by oilsands operations. It is also a major worry for aboriginal and environmental groups concerned about the oilsands’ impact on fishing, hunting and important wildlife staging areas downstream of the oilsands. Environment Canada scientists are sampling everything from snow to lichens to bird eggs as part of the federal-provincial joint oilsands monitoring program.” Allowing the Keystone XL pipeline to be built would only boost the worldwide market for the volatile spoils of Alberta’s oil boom, making the mercury pollution problem all that much worse. Source: Mercury levels found to be rising in area around Alberta oilsands, Montreal Gazette
Mercury Pollution Cycle
Legacy â€“ February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 â€“ Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems
ď ś Kinder Morgan files formal application for Trans Mountain pipeline expansion December 16, 2013 Kinder Morgan today filed its formal application for its proposed $5.4-billion Trans Mountain pipeline expansion, which will triple oil capacity and bring more tankers to Burrard Inlet. The submission of the project application to the National Energy Board (NEB) is a key step in the start of the high-level federal review, which has seen pushback from First Nations, environmentalists and community groups concerned about the potential for spills on the pipeline and from tankers. The application submitted to the NEB is more than 15,000 pages and stands about two metres high, contained in 37 binders. The application includes details of the route, which terminates in Burnaby, and facilities, outlines the environmental and socio-economic effects, marine transportation and engineering components of the proposed project. Kinder Morgan says 73 per cent of the proposed expanded pipeline will follow the existing right-ofway where the pipeline has been in place for 60 years. Another 17 per cent is proposed to follow other existing utility corridors or infrastructure. The company said it is recommending enhancements to marine safety and spill response including extending tug escorts.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems The project – similar to Enbridge’s $6.5-billion Northern Gateway project – is meant to open up new markets in Asia for bitumen from the Alberta oilsands. Canadian oilsands producers are virtually reliant on the U.S. market. “For the past 18 months we have engaged extensively with landowners, aboriginal groups, communities and stakeholders along the entire proposed expansion route, and marine communities, and have carefully considered the input received during this period of study and dialogue,” Ian Anderson, president of Kinder Morgan Canada, said in a news release.
The math does not add up (73% + 17% = 90%. Where’s the other 10%)
Morgan nor Enbridge are responsible for tanker spills.
(Tar sands oil, condensate, chemicals) leaks and spills are impossible to clean up
“Our engagement efforts will continue beyond this filing leading up to the NEB hearing as we consider further input that is critical to our planning on this project.” The announced formal filing to the NEB was immediately welcomed by the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers (CAPP). If approved, the project would see an additional 590,000 barrels of Western Canadian crude oil transported to refineries in Canada, the U.S. and other Pacific Rim countries, noted the oil industry group. The proposal is to increase the pipeline capacity to 890,000 barrels per day from 300,000. “Bolstered market access for Canada’s energy is critical to create jobs and provide economic benefits for all Canadians,” CAPP vice-president Greg Stringham said in a news release.
Tanker traffic would soar under proposed Canadian pipeline December 17, 2013 A big Houston-based energy company would triple the capacity of a Canadian pipeline that ships oil from Alberta to the Vancouver suburb of Burnaby, a project that would increase from five to 34 tankers a month traveling through sensitive international waters. Kinder Morgan Canada formally submitted its application to nearly triple, from 300,000 barrels a day to 850,000, the capacity of its Trans-Mountain Pipeline.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems The purpose of the increased capacity is to serve what the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers describes as “rapidly growing markets in Asia.” The tankers would travel through the Strait of Juan de Fuca and through Haro Strait, which forms the boundary between the San Juan Islands and Vancouver Island. They would pass just off two famed beauty spots of the new San Juan Islands National Monument, Turn Point on Stuart Island and Patos Island. “Our government has been clear we will only allow energy projects to proceed if they are found to be safe for Canadians after an independent scientific, environmental and regulatory review,” said Canada’s Natural Resources Minister Joe Oliver.
The additional question is whether such projects are safe for Americans, or whether concerns for the San Juans, salmon runs shared by the two countries, Olympic National Park, and the U.S. side of the Strait of Juan de Fuca will figure at all in Canada’s decision. Oliver has been a relentless advocate of energy exports to Asia. He has denounced critics of pipeline projects as “foreign-funded radicals” and “jet-setting celebrities,” and thundered last year: “These groups threaten to hijack our regulatory system to achieve their radical ideological goals.” In a recent report, however, a panel appointed by the government in Ottawa said Canada is not prepared to deal with a big (or small) oil spill in the Strait of Juan de Fuca and waters off southern Vancouver Island. Oliver promised on Monday that Canada’s government would “further enhance marine and pipeline safety.” But the government recently shut down a Canada Coast Guard station in Vancouver. The Kinder Morgan pipeline application goes to Canada’s National Energy Board for a 15-month review. Environmental groups and opposition political parties in British Columbia vow to oppose the project. Greenpeace staged a media protest in Burnaby earlier this fall. On Thursday, Canada’s federal government is expected to endorse construction of an even larger pipeline in northern British Columbia. The Northern Gateway Pipeline would carry crude oil from Alberta’s tar sands to an export port at Kitimat, at the head of a long fjord on B.C.’s north coast. Aboriginal First Nations groups in Canada are strongly critical of that project. If Northern Gateway is build, and the capacity of Trans-Mountain is tripled, an estimated 650 oil tankers will enter and leave British Columbia’s sensitive coastal waters each year. Already, TV spots touting oil tanker safety are popping up during hockey game telecasts on Canadian TV, and big newspaper ads show a breaching whale and promise that tankers will have tugboat escorts. The promises are eerily reminiscent of those made when Valdez, at the head of Alaska’s Prince William Sound, was made a terminus of the Trans-Alaska Pipeline.
Memo to the NDP: Trans Mountain is Bigger, Riskier than Northern Gateway December 24, 2013 Tom Mulcair should support both Enbridge and Kinder Morgan's Pacific pipeline proposals, or the NDP leader should oppose them both. To favour one and not the other is simply incoherent.
Northern Gateway and Trans Mountain fulfill exactly the same purpose — except the latter would carry larger volumes of diluted bitumen, with a wider range of risks.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems In a year-end interview with Postmedia journalist Peter O'Neil, Mulcair chose to attack the review process for such projects, rather than evaluate what the two companies are proposing. O'Neil writes: "Mulcair said he’s not going to oppose the Kinder Morgan project, which submitted its National Energy Board application last week. He said the NDP recognizes the importance of getting Canadian oil and gas to the B.C. and Atlantic coasts to avoid dependence on the U.S. market." It's unclear how that squares with Mulcair's vehement rejection of the Enbridge proposal. Size matters Enbridge has applied to pump 525,000 barrels of unrefined bitumen every day — over the Rockies, past BC communities and onto supertankers bound for China. In a news conference last week, Tom Mulcair called that idea "madness" and "a non-starter." But Kinder Morgan's double pipeline would do the same, carrying 890,000 barrels a day.
If Northern Gateway would export refinery jobs, Trans Mountain will export them faster. If Northern Gateway would increase Canada's carbon emissions, Trans Mountain will increase them faster. If Northern Gateway would transfer Canada's strategic energy reserves to a foreign superpower, Trans Mountain will do it faster. And if Northern Gateway would inflate Canada's currency, killing manufacturing jobs in Ontario, Trans Mountain will make this 'Dutch disease' worse. Northern Gateway would cross the Fraser watershed, home to quite likely the planet's largest remaining population of salmon. Trans Mountain crosses the same system closer to the ocean, where more fish come through. Northern Gateway is opposed by 130 First Nations that have signed the Save the Fraser Declaration. This Indigenous legislation also covers the new Trans Mountain line. Enbridge has a history of pipeline spills. So does Kinder Morgan. At least Enbridge is Canadian-owned. Kinder Morgan is from Texas. And Kinder Morgan's project carries risks for Canadian constituents even beyond what Enbridge is proposing.
More to lose Northern Gateway would end in Kitimat, filling 220 oil tankers a year. Trans Mountain would load 408 tankers — more than one per day — in the heart of Metro Vancouver. A tanker accident in the Douglas Channel would hurt fisheries, wildlife, tourism, BC taxpayers and First Nations communities. A tanker accident in Burrard Inlet would do all that and worse. Nowhere else in the world is diluted bitumen shipped from an urban harbour surrounded by two million people. A large spill would be a public health hazard, with repercussions for existing industries, real estate values, and the city's international brand. Unlike Kitimat, Vancouver sits on top of an active subduction zone and seismologists suggest the city is overdue for a magnitude 9 earthquake — with a possible accompanying tsunami.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems In 1994 a 6.7-scale earthquake in Los Angeles ripped a pipeline apart at the seams, spilling 200,000 gallons of oil into the Santa Clara river and surrounding waterways. That was a 10-inch diameter pipe. Kinder Morgan's existing pipeline measures 24 inches, carrying more than five times the volume. The company plans to add a 36-inch pipe, which is 13 times the capacity of the pipeline that burst in L.A.
There are other considerations in a crowded city. Given the widespread health impacts and economic disruption that would result, oil tankers in the Vancouver harbour also constitute a potential target for terrorism. This is not a made-up scenario. In 2002 the double-hulled oil tanker Limburg was rammed by a small boat packed with explosives, spilling 90,000 barrels' worth of crude into the Gulf of Aden. In 2010 an Al Qaeda-linked group claimed responsibility for a similar attack on the Japanese tanker M Star, which thankfully failed. Over the decades to come, who might be motivated to target oil exports from Vancouver? Perhaps religious extremists with funders in oil-rich Gulf states. Or enemies seeking to dent China's energy supply. Or a doomsday cult, or misguided eco-militants, or just a self-radicalized individual with access to a motorboat. A low-probability event, to be sure — but all terrorist attacks are. Political fallout After evaluating the risks versus potential rewards, Vancouver City Council voted unanimously last week to oppose the Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain expansion. Mulcair's provincial counterpart, BC NDP leader Adrian Dix, did the same before the last provincial election in April. Peter O'Neil writes: "Mulcair is not going to get caught making the same mistake as Dix did when he announced in mid-campaign that a provincial NDP government would oppose the $5.4 billion Kinder Morgan pipeline project to the B.C. coast even before it went to regulatory review." There is a persistent story in BC that Dix lost because of his stance on Kinder Morgan. I think that's more of a convenient excuse, fuelled in part by the people responsible for his otherwise lacklustre campaign — many of whom are back working for Mulcair. Polling by Justason Market Intelligence in the wake of Dix's Earth Day announcement showed a clear bump for the NDP as a result, drawing new admirers from the Liberals (5%), Greens (4%) and undecided voters (16%). Evidently it was not enough on its own to prop up the collapsing campaign, but the numbers suggest it was a help, not a hindrance. Since then, local opposition to the Kinder Morgan proposal has only strengthened. If the federal NDP supports the Trans Mountain expansion, the party's Vancouver-area MPs will have until the next election to explain that logic to constituents.
The Marshall Islands-flagged tanker ship Densa Whale sits anchored in Port Angeles Harbor on Saturday after visiting BP’s Cherry Point refinery earlier in the week. Tankers servicing Canadian oil could add to traffic on the Strait of Juan de Fuca north of the border
Seven times the oil tanker traffic in the Strait? Canada weighs pipeline terminal in Vancouver, B.C., area Watch “Coastal Tarsands Part #1” HERE Watch “Coastal Tarsands Part #2” HERE December 28, 2013 SEATTLE — The number of oil tankers in Washington state waters could increase almost sevenfold under a proposal by a Canadian pipeline company to expand the amount of crude oil it sends to the Pacific Coast. The Makah Nation is among the entities studying the risk to the Strait of Juan de Fuca. Kinder Morgan Canada filed a formal application with Canadian regulators earlier this month to expand its Trans Mountain pipeline that carries crude oil from Alberta's oil sands to the Vancouver, B.C., area.
Majority of British Columbia citizens, First Nations and Conservation organizations oppose these proposed oil and coal export increases. In addition to what is reported here, heavy bitumen oil from the tar sands, liquefied natural gas and condensate will be shipped via the often treacherous Douglas Channel Canada reported that they are incapable of providing adequate protection/cleanup of spills associated with the existing tanker fleet. No way can they meet the spill response associated with the increased fleet.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems Under the proposal, up to 34 tankers a month would be loaded with oil at a terminal outside Vancouver, then generally travel through Haro Strait west of San Juan Island and the Strait of Juan de Fuca for export to markets in Asia and the U.S. That's up from about five tankers a month now. The $5.4 billion expansion project would nearly triple pipeline capacity from about 300,000 to 890,000 barrels of crude oil a day to meet customer demand. Much of that future cargo will likely be diluted bitumen from Canada's oil sands. Environmental groups in the U.S. and Canada oppose the project, saying it would put communities and natural resources at risk. They say more tanker traffic raises the potential for a major oil spill or leaks. “Putting more vessels on the water creates tremendous new risks, and risks we're not really prepared to deal with adequately,” said Bruce Wishart, a policy adviser with the Washington Environmental Council.
This is not “run of the mill” oil. It’s a toxic mix (dibit) of heavy oil (bitumen) from Alberta’s tar sands, a cocktail mix of chemicals and condensate from Asia used to facilitate the heavy oil flow through yet to be built pipelines. As an example, expansion at the Kitimat, BC terminal will result in at least 250 dibit tanker (Very Large Crude Carrier class) visits, 125 condensate tanker visits and 250 Liquefied Natural Gas tanker visits. Each of these large vessels will be supported by multiple tugboats. This fleet of “energy vessels will be joined by other import/export vessels and a growing number of cruise ships – ever increasing in size and capacity.
Risks to BC’s coast associated with this increased shipping traffic are exacerbated by the seven fold increase in Fraser River dibit shipments The above concerns and risks do not take into account the significant impacts to marine mammals from additional sonar use employed by these ships and their support vessels.
“We don't want to see more of this product moving across our waters.” The company says it has been responsibly loading tankers and barges from the Westridge terminal for decades without incident. Michael Davies, senior director of marine development for Kinder Morgan Canada, said in a statement the company has “clearly heard and understood the concerns raised about tanker traffic.” He added: “We have been safely loading vessels for more than 50 years and have recommended further enhancements to marine safety and spill response in our application to ensure the local level of care and safety is well above global shipping standards.” If approved, the expansion is expected to be operational in late 2017. The pipeline is operated by Kinder Morgan Canada and owned by Houston-based Kinder Morgan Energy Partners LP. About 6,000 large commercial vessels transit Canadian and U.S. waters toward Vancouver or Washington ports each year.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems Two other proposed projects also are expected to increase cargo vessel traffic in the Salish Sea region. They include the Gateway Pacific coal-export terminal proposed at Cherry Point, which could add up to 487 cargo ships a year, and the proposed expansion at Deltaport at Roberts Bank in Delta, B.C. Meanwhile, officials in Washington state are trying to anticipate how those proposals could change vessel traffic in north Puget Sound and what that means for spill risks. The Puget Sound Partnership, the Makah Nation and others are working with researchers at George Washington University to study different risk scenarios. “For more than two decades we've had a great track record of maritime safety and we want to continue that success,” said Todd Hass with the Puget Sound Partnership. “In the face of a number projects that could add hundreds of vessels arriving in the system, we want to make sure we anticipate the changes that might occur and plan.” Some marine officials say increased vessels can be managed. “Safeguards are in place. They may have to be tweaked. Some folks think it's a heavily congested waterway. There aren't many vessels out there,” said John Veentjer, a former Coast Guard officer who heads the Puget Sound Harbor Safety Committee. “If those projects were to be built, there would be more vessels. Can we manage those numbers? Sure,” he said. “I think it's going to take some additional vessel traffic management effort, but it's not something out of our reach.” Fred Felleman, Northwest consultant for Friends of the Earth, said Canadian officials haven't done enough to ensure they can adequately respond to spills in waters it shares with the U.S. “They haven't taken enough steps to prevent and respond to the size of a spill such traffic would generate,” he said. Linda Pilkey-Jarvis, manager of the Department of Ecology's spills preparedness section, said various efforts are underway to identify and align spill preparedness standards between the U.S. and Canada. When the state updated its contingency plan last year, it required the industry to include response equipment to locate oil in the water column. That was in response to some emerging proposals, such as the Kinder Morgan pipeline expansion, she said. Editorial Comment:
“There's work to be done, but we're not completely unprepared,” she said.
From the statement on the left we know that Canada and the USA are not completely prepared for increased tanker traffic. A catastrophic disaster in the making!
Graphic: A detailed look at the proposed Northern Gateway pipeline
1. Pipeline tunnels: Two tunnels would be constructed to navigate the Coast Mountain range – the 6.5-kilometre Clore and the 6.6-kilometre Hoult. Both would be 5.5 metres in diameter and equipped with monitoring instruments. 2. 1,177 kilometres: Length of proposed dual pipelines. They would be buried at a depth of about one metre in a 25-metre-wide right-of-way between Bruderheim, Alta., and Kitimat, B.C. 3. Route design: Enbridge says it made 22 revisions to minimize impact on waterways, terrain, wildlife and neighbouring communities. The route crosses more than 1,000 streams and rivers. Enbridge says about 70 per cent of the route utilizes previously disturbed lands.
1. Kitimat marine terminal: Two supertankers at a time would tie up at Northern Gateway’s proposed terminal. Enbridge expects about 220 ship calls a year. Nineteen large tanks would store oil and condensate for loading and unloading. 2. Supertanker routes: Double-hulled tankers less than 20 years old would navigate Douglas Channel through the Great Bear Rainforest at speeds between eight and 12 knots. Critics have expressed concern about navigation challenges through the channel and the frequency of storms.
The proposed tanker route leaving from Kitimat, B.C. is show on a map Thursday, Sept, 19, 2013.
Northern Gateway pipeline recommended for approval by energy board, with 209 conditions December 19, 2013 CALGARY — The benefits of the Northern Gateway pipeline to bring Alberta crude to the West Coast outweigh its shortcomings and it should be allowed to proceed with 209 conditions, a federal review panel says. The much-anticipated report was released from National Energy Board headquarters in Calgary Thursday afternoon, 10 years after the project was proposed and after more than a year of public hearings throughout B.C. and Alberta. The final decision, however, rests with the federal government, which has 180 days to decide. In April, the panel released a list of 199 potential conditions that the proponent, Calgary-based Enbridge Inc., might need to meet should the project be approved — the report adds 10 more. Download the report HERE Enbridge has scheduled a conference call response at 4:30 p.m. Mountain time Thursday. The 1,170-kilometre project would deliver 525,000 barrels of petroleum a day from the Edmonton area in a 36-inch pipeline through northern B.C. to a tanker terminal in Kitimat, on the West Coast. A 20-inch pipeline would move 193,000 barrels of condensate, a light petroleum liquid, per day east back to its starting point to be used to thin heavy oil for transport. The project has previously been estimated at $6.5 billion but the panel said in its news release its cost is now forecast to be $7.9 billion. "Based on a scientific and precautionary approach to this complex review, the panel found that the project, if built and operated in compliance with the conditions set out in its report, would be in the public interest," it stated. The panel concluded there would be no significant adverse environmental effects, with the exception of cumulative effects for certain populations of woodland caribou and grizzly bear — and there affects would be "at the low end of the range of possible significance." It said a large oil spill from the project would be "significant" but also "unlikely and not permanent." It also noted that "opening Pacific Basin markets is important to the Canadian economy and society."
Legacy â€“ February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 â€“ Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems The conditions include developing plans to protect marine mammals and caribou habitat and research the behaviour and cleanup of heavy oils The project has been a lightning rod in the debate over global climate change and raised concerns about the possibility of an oil spill on land or off the coast of B.C. The British Columbia government told the panel it did not support the pipeline as it was proposed and more than 130 aboriginal bands signed a declaration against the project. Bob Schulz, a professor at the University of Calgary's Haskayne School of Business, said there are major issues that will still have to be dealt with around the project.
"The First Nations piece isn't really done here," he said.
"Some of the First Nations bands may say, if the pipeline goes through our territory, we're going to take it to court. That will really slow things down." The project is of huge importance to the Alberta government as it attempts to open new markets for provincial energy resources that now flow only to the United States. The NEB panel found that there would be significant economic benefit from the project, including $90 billion in government revenues and $300 billion in GDP growth over 30 years. Alberta is the primary beneficiary from Gateway, reaping $67 billion over 30 years compared to B.C.'s $15 billion. Schulz said the Alberta and B.C. governments, which have reached a framework agreement on energy transportation projects, will still have to work together to make the project work. "In five years, if this project doesn't go, Alberta is going to be in trouble," he said. Enbridge has promised double-hulled modern oil tankers and 20 per cent thicker steel than required, on average, on the pipeline. It has agreed to set aside $1 billion to cover potential accidents. The pipeline would allow Canadian oil producers to reach the emerging markets of Asia and free them from their sole major export market in the United States. Northern Gateway's volumes are effectively fully spoken for by Alberta producers under long-term contracts. In a report Thursday morning, Scotiabank commodity expert Patricia Mohr said export oil pipelines are vital to Canada's future economic health. "While probably not in place until 2018, the pipeline would help to narrow recently wide 'light' as well as 'heavy oil' price discounts off WTI (New York-traded West Texas Intermediate), which have been so costly for the Canadian economy," she pointed out. The Kitimat terminal would have two ship berths and storage for three condensate tanks and 11 petroleum tanks. It would also include a radar monitoring station and first response capabilities.
CBC presented some interesting numbers about the Northern Gateway project: Estimated revenue to the province over the next 30 years: $ 1.2 billion. Estimated economic cost of a major spill: $2.4 to 9.5 billion. This sounds more like gambling than good money management. We do know our government loves gambling.
Federal review panel gives green light to Northern Gateway pipeline First Nations considering legal challenges that could delay project December 19, 2013 VANCOUVER -- A long-awaited federal panel decision approved Enbridge’s controversial $6.5-billion Northern Gateway pipeline, but the project still faces major hurdles, including legal action by First Nations. The B.C. Liberal government’s five conditions for heavy-oil pipeline support may also prove to be an obstacle. B.C. Environment Minister Mary Polak said there’s little chance the project can meet its five complex conditions during the 180 days the federal government has to make a final decision. These obstacles raise the spectre of project delays beyond a decision by Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s Conservative government, should it give the pipeline the go-ahead. Download the report HERE
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems On Thursday, after a decade of planning by Calgary-based Enbridge, lengthy hearings, testimony from more than 1,000 people in opposition, and technical evidence presented by experts and lawyers, the National Energy Board-led panel said the project could go ahead if Enbridge met 209 conditions. Those conditions include Enbridge carrying $950 million in spill insurance coverage, putting in place a plan to offset losses in Caribou habitat and putting into effect its promised enhanced tanker safety plan. That plan includes the use of escort tugs, a new advanced radar system, and an increased spillresponse system. The panel said they concluded the project would be in the public interest. ‘Benefits outweigh risks’ “We find that the project’s potential benefits for Canada and Canadians outweigh the potential burdens and risks,” said the three-member panel, led by chairwoman Sheila Leggett. “It is our view that, after mitigation, the likelihood of significant adverse environmental effects resulting from project malfunctions or accidents is very low.” Enbridge, the oil and pipeline industry, and the B.C. business community immediately welcomed Thursday’s decision, but the reaction from First Nations and environmentalists was also swift. They will continue fighting to stop the 1,177-kilometre pipeline and the 220 tankers, some carrying as much as two million barrels of oil, that would ply the northwest coast annually. Their major concern has been the risk and effects of a spill on land or in the ocean. Enbridge claims support from 26 of 48 First Nations in northern B.C. and Alberta, but opposition has been vocal and strong in north-central and coastal B.C. Nadleh Whut’en Chief Martin Louie of the Yinka Dene Alliance said in an interview from Fraser Lake, west of Prince George, that First Nations have worked within the government process without success and that their options are now limited. “We don’t have many choices, we either go to court or roadblocks,” he said. “I’m pretty sure we’ll be going to court. I know it’s expensive, but it’s important to save whatever we have, the water and the land, for our children.” Louie said he expects to conduct talks soon with other First Nations opposed to Enbridge. “Together, I think we’ll actually be able to do something. We’ll have to start setting up a meeting with all B.C. First Nations, setting up a process on how to deal with this whole issue — legally and underground.” ‘Forced to go to courts’ Added Lake Babine Nation chief Wilf Adam: “The (panel) recommendations have made it clear to us that we are being forced to go to the courts to protect our aboriginal rights.”
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems Art Sterritt, executive director of Coastal First Nations, had a more moderate response, saying the conditions set out confirm earlier studies showing the ability does not exist to clean up an oil spill. But even if the federal governments agrees to improvements, it will take years before the technology is sufficient to address environmental concerns, Sterritt said. And he did not rule out legal action. Condition 169 lays out the need for research programs into oil-spill cleanup and the varying physical and chemical properties of the oil intended to be shipped, including studies into dispersal and remediation. “They’ll have to give us the comfort that the technology exists,” Sterritt said. “If the federal government steps up on this, we may have the makings of a relationship.” While Canada’s highest courts — including the Supreme Court of Canada — have ruled that First Nations do not have a veto on resources projects, governments have a duty to consult and accommodate their aboriginal rights and interests on unresolved land-claim areas. “The aboriginal people certainly have the capacity to obstruct and delay in law; whether they have the (ability) to stop in law a pipeline, is less clear,” University of B.C. law professor Doug Harris said. “However, whether they have the capacity to stop a pipeline by other means, crystallizing or building First Nations and broader public opposition to a pipeline, is a different question. And inevitably, I suspect, the strategies will be intertwined.” B.C. Environment Minister Mary Polak said while one of its five conditions — the passing of the environmental review — has been partly met, the four other conditions remain. Those are creating world-leading marine and land-spill prevention and recovery systems, addressing First Nations rights, and the province receiving a fair share of economic benefits. Polak said she couldn’t see a way for those conditions to be met in the 180-day federal government decision period. “I would be absolutely shocked if there would be some capacity to make that determination within a year,” Polak told reporters. She said the province would have to see evidence that Enbridge can, for example, handle spills before determining if the province will support the project. The B.C. Liberal government had earlier rejected the Northern Gateway project, saying Enbridge’s submission to the NEB did not address its environmental concerns. Social licence vital While approval for the pipeline falls under federal jurisdiction, Polak said she could not see the federal government or Enbridge moving ahead unless the province’s five conditions were met because there would be no social licence.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems She said that discussion with Alberta, whose recent support of B.C.’s conditions is critical, and the federal government will continue on how to meet the conditions. Enbridge said the 209 conditions were “tough” but could be met, and also provided a basis to build more public support. Enbridge president and CEO Al Monaco stressed they would be working to meet B.C.’s conditions and trying to “re-engage” First Nations that oppose the project. He noted that projects rarely get full support, but said he did not want to speculate on what would happen if First Nations on B.C.’s coast and in north-central B.C. continued to oppose the project. Earlier this month, Harper’s special envoy to First Nations on western energy projects, Douglas Eyford, concluded there “has not been constructive dialogue” with aboriginal communities — something the federal government must take drastic steps to change if it expects to win support for the projects. “While we are happy with (Thursday’s) announcement, we are not celebrating,” Monaco said. “The way I think about this, is it’s been a long climb up the mountain so far, we’ve made good progress, but we’ve got more climbing to do and we feel we can get there.” Opposition NDP leader Adrian Dix said his party will “join with those opposed to Enbridge Northern Gateway to continue the fight” against a project that he said isn’t in B.C.’s interest, and isn’t supported by communities in the region or First Nations. He called on Premier Christy Clark’s government to maintain its initial position against the project when she unveiled her five conditions for accepting oil pipelines. Notwithstanding recent polling that suggests opposition to the project waning, Dix said the “substantive evidence” of British Columbia’s position is the overwhelming negative effect that British Columbians gave in their submissions to the panel hearings. In Kitimat, the terminus of the project, fishing guide Tracey John Hittel said the project is already bringing work to the community of 8,300. Hittel has been busy working this winter providing boat taxi services for contractors conducting environmental studies for Enbridge. He said his confidence is increasing the pipeline and tankers can be operated safely. “They want to do the right thing, and I think it’s going to happen because First Nations and people have put them in the spotlight,” Hittel said.
Oil tankers, threatened humpbacks on collision course on B.C.’s north coast due to pipeline approval December 20, 2013 Oil tankers associated with Enbridge Northern Gateway are on a collision course with threatened humpback whales swimming through federally recognized critical habitat on B.C.’s north coast, researchers warned Friday. Susan Pinkus, senior scientist with Ecojustice, said the joint review panel’s recommendation that the $6.5-billion Northern Gateway pipeline project proceed with conditions runs smack up against protections afforded under the federal Species at Risk Act (SARA). Legal protection for the humpbacks’ critical habitat under a SARA recovery plan takes effect in April 2014, with tankers already identified by the federal government as posing potential threats due to strikes, underwater noise, displacement of whales, and oil spills, she said. Pinkus cannot see how the federal government could issue permits under SARA allowing oil tankers to proceed through confined channels deemed critical to humpbacks. And if Ottawa did, that would open up the potential for environmentalists to launch legal action. “The most serious threats Enbridge poses for marine mammals cannot be mitigated by conditions,” she said in an interview from Vancouver. “From a biological perspective, I cannot see how oil tankers could ever meet the preconditions necessary to obtain a Species at Risk Act permit to move through the recently identified humpback whale critical habitat.”
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems Among its 209 recommendations Thursday, the panel said Enbridge should develop a marine mammal protection plan for construction and operation that includes mitigation and monitoring, including reporting of any mammals killed or injured. The panel deemed the “risk to marine mammals from cumulative effects as manageable, particularly with the benefit of additional knowledge about marine mammals and effects mitigation that would be gained and available for use broadly if the project were to proceed.” As such, it concluded “that the project is not likely to result in significant adverse cumulative effects with respect to marine mammals.” The panel added it is applying a “careful and precautionary approach” and says Enbridge has promised to go beyond industry standards to protect whales, including through research and speed restrictions on vessels. A map provided in the panel report identifies a “core humpback whale area” as extending from Douglas Channel (southwest of the Enbridge pipeline terminus at Kitimat) through Wright Sound and into Otter Channel, Squally Channel and Caamano Sound. The federal government has also identified critical habitat for humpbacks off the west coast of Vancouver Island and two areas off Haida Gwaii. Hermann Meuter and his partner, marine biologist Janie Wray, have been studying whales at their Cetacealab research station on the south end of Gil Island for more than a decade. More than 300 humpback whales currently utilize the area threatened by oil tankers. The panel report said that with “mitigation and considering the success of other ports in mitigating effects, displacement is unlikely. If displacement did occur, it is likely that whales would move to other feeding areas in other locations” on the B.C. coast. “This is an insult, very disappointing,” Meuter responded. “If this is identified critical habitat, we have to make sure we keep it that way. From what we know, the waters around Gil Island are very important habitat for a number of whale species. That’s just a fact.” The couple also identified 47 fin whales this past summer, mostly in Squally Channel and Caamano Sound, only seven years after they were first confirmed to live in the area. Fin whales are the second largest creature on Earth at up to 27 metres in length and 80 tonnes. Meuter said the necessary research should be done in advance to ensure protection of the whales — not give the Enbridge the go-ahead and study later. Jim Darling, a Tofino-based researcher with Pacific Wildlife Foundation who studies humpbacks in B.C. and Hawaii, said the panel report is full of “management-speak, which means absolutely nothing in the real world and is mostly hypothetical.” The report amounts to “Northern Gateway basically saying whatever is necessary — whatever they need to say — to get it through, and with no penalty if things do not unfold as they predict or if they just decide not to follow up ...” Darling said.
Northern Gateway is a war that Ottawa can’t win December 20, 2013 There was always a strong economic case to be made for the Northern Gateway pipeline. The question facing the National Energy Board panel evaluating its merits was whether those fiscal benefits outweighed the significant environmental risks associated with the project. In recommending conditional approval for the pipeline, the board’s joint review panel this week decided that the societal and fiscal advantages the project represents to B.C. and the country ultimately trump any potential perils. Now it is up to Ottawa to decide if the panel’s endorsement is enough to proceed in the face of the aboriginal and environmental backlash the decision has already ignited. Gateway represents one of the most important decisions the federal government has faced in years. It must determine whether the pipeline is in the national interest and whether those same interests override vehement First Nations objections, not to mention those of a vast swath of the provincial population most affected by the pipeline’s construction. Forcing it down the throats of a province would be a dangerous move for any national government, except under the most extraordinary of circumstances. At this point, Gateway would seem to represent a war that Stephen Harper’s Conservative government can’t win.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems It will no doubt do its best over the next few months to try to turn aboriginal opposition to the project in its favour. And while Natural Resources Minister Joe Oliver might persuade a few of the First Nations holdouts that mitigation efforts being imposed on Enbridge by the joint review panel would minimize risks to a degree deemed acceptable by most fair-minded people, he will not be able to persuade them all. Not even close. It would seem inevitable that aboriginal groups such as the Coastal First Nations will take this matter to court, where it could be bogged down for months if not years. Would Ottawa dare green-light the project in the meantime? That would seem almost unthinkable given the money that could be spent, and ultimately lost, if the courts ruled in favour of the aboriginal opponents. And the government’s recent court record involving disputes with First Nations groups in B.C. is not good. Beyond that, there is the hostility toward the project by environmental groups, the full wrath of which Ottawa has not yet seen. While the Conservatives have tried to write off members of these organizations as foreign-funded radicals, they nonetheless represent a well-financed and wellorganized front that has made Gateway a hill to die on. In many respects, the future viability of the environmental movement itself resides in its ability to ensure that this project never sees the light of day. And it will use any means – including worldwide protests and the courts – to help claim victory. Then there is the additional question of whether Mr. Harper has the moral authority to proceed with Gateway given the positions held by his two central political opponents – the federal Liberals and New Democrats. Both parties are steadfastly against Gateway under any terms. Would it be right for Ottawa to green-light a project in, say, late 2014, with a federal election just around the corner? An election that could well result in a change in government, if current polls are to be believed? Despite the joint panel’s thorough and, on many levels, justifiable decision, it is difficult to see how Gateway proceeds. Its only hope, perhaps, is if a plan emerges to refine the crude that would be piped from Alberta to the coast before it is loaded on tankers, thereby drastically reducing the potential environmental damage that would be created by a spill. But that does not seem to be on Enbridge’s radar. And even then it’s doubtful that would assuage those against oil tankers plying the B.C. North Coast under any circumstances. What Gateway may end up being is the decision that allowed the Kinder Morgan pipeline to get approved. It would seem inconceivable that it could get killed as well, given that it does not involve transporting oil down one of the most ecologically sensitive coastlines in the world. At some point, reasonable minds must prevail, just accommodation must be made.
Editorial Comment: Not so fast here. Kinder Morgan’s proposed expansion has its own international risks to public health, wild ecosystems, cultures, communities and economies. Neither pipeline project with their many risks will ever be completed.
This week, Northern Gateway received conditional approval. But that may be as far as the project ever gets.
Stephen Hume: Pipeline debate shaping up as propaganda war December 27, 2013 Well, that didn’t take long. The New Year isn’t even here yet and the Northern Gateway pipeline debate already begins to polarize. First up, an argument that non-governmental organizations vowing to stop the proposed project following its approval by the National Energy Board — subject to more than 200 conditions — are somehow undermining the democratic process through intimidation, threats of violent protest, political sabotage, slander and disinformation. This is all code. It is intended to define a category to which those who think the pipeline is a bad idea can be routinely consigned. Thus, opposition may be dismissed without assessing the merits of the objections — simply opposing the pipeline invites automatic framing of that protest as the work of enemies of the Canadian way of life. British Columbians have heard all this rhetoric before. It is a propaganda strategy devised by giant public relations firms. It was first deployed here more than 20 years ago by the forest industry in response to protest and civil disobedience aimed at preventing the denuding of great swaths of the province with vast industrial clearcuts.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems For those who need a refresher course on this strategy (and a handy antidote to its use in many other arenas), I recommend The War Against the Greens by indie journalist David Helvarg; The Age of Propaganda: The Everyday Use and Abuse of Persuasion by communications scholars Anthony Pratkanis and Elliot Aronson; and The Sultans of Sleaze: Public Relations and the Media by social analyst Joyce Nelson. A word to the enthusiasts for this approach: It didn’t work in the early 1990s; it won’t work now. As it turned out, the protests — even civil disobedience — didn’t result in the collapse of the economy. What did happen was that the forest industry modified its approach. Today, although there is still protest at the margins and over specifics of policy, industry has found that building consensus, engaging with critics and consultation is far more effective than confrontation. Instead of seeking to polarize the issue into “them” versus “us,” advocates of such projects might think about the idea that “we” are “them,” in the sense that democracy accommodates dissent and the right of citizens to protest what their governments — and government proxies — want to do. And that accommodation extends to civil disobedience, which can’t and shouldn’t be equated with criminal violence. Very few sympathize with criminal acts, but civil disobedience is another matter. If it weren’t for civil disobedience we would still be run by the Family Compact, would still have slavery and indentured labour instead of trade unions and labour codes, and women wouldn’t have the vote. The inherent assumption in the demonization of opposition to the Northern Gateway pipeline proposal — please note, it’s a proposal that hasn’t yet addressed its ability to meet even the most basic conditions imposed by the NEB, let alone B.C. — is that the economic interests of giant corporations represent the Canadian way of life. It is common for proponents of industrial mega-projects to portray their expectations of profit as vital to the economic interests of the nation. But the economic interests of Canada — or the province, or communities, or First Nations, or workers — are not what motivate corporations. They seek to do what is in their own immediate economic interests. This is fine. It’s called business. But it doesn’t follow that business interests and other interests automatically coincide. Corporate interests can certainly be congruent with other interests, and they can be modified to complement one another. However, just because a trans-national corporation sees profit in a particular enterprise, it doesn’t follow that its interests are everyone’s. So, as the “eco-terrorism” balloon is once again inflated, let us please keep in mind this fact. Among those objecting to the Northern Gateway pipeline project as proposed are: 1. The official Opposition in the House of Commons; 2. The province of British Columbia; 3. The Union of B.C. Municipalities; 4. First Nations governments through whose territories the pipeline and tankers will pass; 5. Major trade unions, including Canada’s largest; 6. The municipal governments of Terrace, Prince Rupert, Victoria and the Regional District of Queen Charlotte; 7. The B.C. Wilderness Tourism Association; 8. Various non-governmental environmental organizations — they range from those who will employ direct action to those who reject it. This opposition does not look like radical green eco-terrorists out to destroy business or the Canadian way of life. It looks like a broad cross-section of serious citizens with concerns to express. And have the democratic right to do so.
Scientists urge EU action on tar sands - letter December 20, 2013 BRUSSELS (Reuters) - More than 50 top European and U.S. scientists have written to the European Commission president urging him to press ahead with a plan to label tar sands as more polluting than other forms of oil, in defiance of intensive lobbying from Canada.
The draft law was kept on ice during trade talks between the European Union and Canada, the world's biggest producer of oil from tar sands, which culminated in a multimillion-dollar pact signed earlier this year. EU sources, speaking on condition of anonymity, have said political momentum behind even bigger trade talks between the United States and Europe could freeze the EU tar sands plan for good, as it would hobble billions of dollars' worth of transatlantic trade in oil products.
The 53 scientists who have written to President Jose Manuel Barroso include professors from Harvard, Stanford and Columbia in the United States, Aberdeen and Edinburgh in Scotland, University College in Ireland and Heidelberg in Germany.
Legacy â€“ February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 â€“ Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems They say the EU draft law, which would label fuels according to how much carbon they emit over their entire wells-to-wheels lifecycle, is scientifically sound, after criticism from the oil industry that it is not. In the letter dated December 16, they say the policy would ensure investment in cleaner fuels and for the first time hold the oil industry accountable for carbon emitted during production of the fuels they sell in Europe.
"We live in an era during which it has become clear that we cannot burn all of the fossil fuels without causing dangerous climate change," the letter, seen by Reuters, said. Peter Smith, a professor at the University of Aberdeen, said he signed the letter because fuels must be assessed "on the basis of the damage that they do".
LAW IN LIMBO EU member states approved legislation in 2009, with the aim of cutting greenhouse gases from transport fuel sold in Europe by 6 percent by 2020, but failed to agree how to implement it.
Named the Fuel Quality Directive (FQD), the law has been in limbo almost ever since. Oil companies, such as BP, and countries led by Canada have spoken out against it, saying it is unfair and unscientific. To fend off the criticism, the European Commission said last year it was assessing the business impact of its proposal, but has yet to publish the results. EU sources say they do not expect publication of the Commission's impact assessment until after a major chunk of environment and energy policy set to be announced in January. In a statement, the Commission confirmed it had received the letter and would reply. "The Commission has consulted widely on this complex file and is in the process of finalizing the impact assessment," it said.
Northern Gateway? Get on with it December 19, 2013 It's no surprise a National Energy Board review panel after almost two years of hearings gave the goahead Thursday to the $6.5-billion Northern Gateway pipeline, provided 209 conditions are met. It's also the right decision.
Legacy â€“ February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 â€“ Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems The panel's key conclusion that, "Canada and Canadians would be better off with the Enbridge Northern Gateway project than without it" is a statement of the obvious. We're a resource-rich country, but when it comes to oil and natural gas, most of our resources are landlocked in the centre of the nation. If we don't develop efficient ways to get them to Canadian harbours on the west and east coast, and from there to foreign markets, our economy will suffer. Canadians will suffer. Any political party that opposes the Northern Gateway pipeline -- and others now under review across Canada -- may as well tell us they don't care about our economic well-being. Prime Minister Stephen Harper and his cabinet have six months to decide whether to approve the pipeline, but that's a foregone conclusion. Significant hurdles remain in terms of getting the B.C. government fully on side and fighting off legal challenges and political pressure from environmental groups, whose real agenda is not to make pipelines safe, but to stop them. Aboriginal groups opposing the Northern Gateway and other fossil fuel projects across the country, such as fracking, alternate between attacking them on environmental grounds and demanding a share of the profits, from what they say is their land. Indeed, settling native land claims would help move these projects along considerably. But the bottom line is this.
Editorial Comment: Wild Game Fish Conservation International finds these comments to be offensive and ignorant beyond belief as they are made with no regard to the significant and often irreversible risks directly associated with removal, transportation and combustion of fossil fuels. Adding to the risks associated with crude oil are those now coming to light that are associated with heavy bitumen, condensate and a conglomeration of toxic chemicals used to transport this product that should be left in the ground.
No form of energy generation, extraction or transport is 100% safe. Pipelines leak, oil tankers run aground, trains carrying fossil fuels derail -- as we saw with the terrible loss of life in Lac-Megantic. So make no mistake. The job of government is to make the extraction and transportation of fossil fuels as safe as possible. But it's also to stand up to political pressure from green luddites, whose real agenda is to sell us on the idiotic idea of sabotaging our own economy. And to get us to buy their snake-oil claims that wind and solar power are capable of powering a modern, industrialized economy, which is nonsense.
Editorial Comment: VLCC tankers will carry toxic dilbit from Kitimat, British Columbia via the often treacherous Douglas Channel to the Pacific Ocean en route to Asian markets.
Researchers find 7,300-sq-mile ring of mercury around tar sands in Canada Bitumen in the tar sands being excavated to produce oil is the likely culprit of the mercury deposits December 29, 2013
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems Scientists have found a more than 7,300-square-mile ring of land and water contaminated by mercury surrounding the tar sands in Alberta, where energy companies are producing oil and shipping it throughout Canada and the U.S. Government scientists are preparing to publish a report that found levels of mercury are up to 16 times higher around the tar-sand operations — principally due to the excavation and transportation of bitumen in the sands by oil and gas companies, according to Postmedia-owned Canadian newspapers like The Vancouver Sun. Environment Canada researcher Jane Kirk recently presented the findings at a toxicology conference in Nashville, Tenn.
The revelations add to growing concerns over the environmental impact of mining the tar sands. Many environmentalists charge that extracting oil from the sands will lead to an increase in carbon emissions, the destruction of the land, water contamination and health problems for Canadians. The debate over the tar sands crossed over into the United States when energy company TransCanada proposed building the Keystone XL pipeline to transport crude oil to the southeastern U.S. for refining and distribution.
Kirk and her colleagues' research shows that the development of the tar sands may be responsible for spreading mercury — which can cause nervoussystem damage — far beyond the areas where drilling and transportation are taking place. The research suggests that the tar-sand development has created a ring of mercury contamination, with areas close to the sands showing much higher levels of mercury than before development. The researchers collected samples of dirt, snow, bird eggs and other materials from more than 100 sites to perform their analysis. While the mercury levels found around the sands are still lower than in other parts of Canada (notably around coal plants and incinerators), mercury is particularly worrisome to environmentalists because it can bioaccumulate, meaning it becomes more concentrated as it works its way up the food chain. In a report published in October, another Canadian researcher found elevated levels of mercury in bird eggs downstream from the tar sands.
Kirk and her team also found traces of methylmercury, a more toxic form of mercury, in snow for the first time in the area.
Oil Company Looks To Great Lakes As Shipping Demand Booms December 27, 2013 North Dakota and western Canada are producing crude oil faster than it can be shipped to refineries. Rail car manufacturers can’t make new tank cars fast enough, and new pipeline proposals face long delays over environmental concerns. So energy companies are looking for new ways to get the heavy crude to market. One proposed solution is to ship the oil by barge over the Great Lakes — but it’s a controversial one. Crews are working around the clock in North Dakota, where there’s a lot of oil under the Bakken Shale formation, and in the Alberta tar sands area in western Canada, where there’s tens of billions of gallons more. “As domestic production of crude oil from unconventional shale plays, such as the Bakken formation, among others, continues to increase, so too will the need to identify the safest, most reliable methods by which to transport crude oil to our nation’s refining centers,” says Noel Ryan, a spokesman for Calumet Specialty Products Partners, an energy company based in Indiana. Calumet wants to spend $20 million to upgrade a dock next to a refinery in Superior, Wis., where surplus oil could be transferred from pipeline onto barges, then shipped over the waters of Lake Superior to refineries in the Midwest and eastern U.S. “Given a lack of sufficient pipeline and rail capacity to transport crude oil from northern production fields to key refining centers, this project has received significant indications of interest from our customers,” according to a company statement.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems Shipping the oil by barge brings potential economic benefits and jobs. But there are special risks with heavy crude, says Lyman Welch, water quality program director of the conservation group Alliance for the Great Lakes. “A spill in the open waters of Lake Superior would be very difficult if not impossible to clean up,” Welch says. “Tar sands crude oil is heavier than water, so much of it sinks to the bottom of a river or lake water body if there is a spill.”
A 2010 oil spill on the Kalamazoo River was one of the largest oil spills in the history of the Midwest. Welch points to the massive spill of tar sands crude into the Kalamazoo River in Michigan in the summer of 2010 from a ruptured Enbridge pipeline. He says cleanup efforts have taken three years and more than $1 billion, and it’s estimated that 20 percent or more of that oil remains on the bottom and may never be completely cleaned up. That spill wasn’t too far from where the river empties into Lake Michigan, and current regulations and response readiness aren’t adequate to either prevent or clean up a similar spill in the Great Lakes, according to a study from the Alliance for the Great Lakes. Some oil is already shipped over the lakes, but not the heavy tar sands crude. Regulations for that still need to be developed. Before any shipping of tar sands crude begins, many permits and approvals will need to be granted by various government agencies, says Jerry Popiel of the Coast Guard, who oversees incidents such as oil spills in the region. The first to come would be the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources approving the dock upgrades, which could happen early next year. Popiel agrees heavy tar sands crude presents unique challenges. But he also says if shipping were to be approved, the Coast Guard would strictly enforce safety regulations, and it would respond to any spill as if it were in his own backyard. “Personally, I grew up on the Great Lakes, and I still live there,” Popiel says. “My kids swim in it, we drink the water ourselves, so we have as vested an interest as anyone to keep the system as clean and environmentally sound as possible.”
Pipeline giant buys US shipping fleet December 27, 2013
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems Pipeline giant Kinder Morgan Energy Partners will spend nearly $1 billion to move into the tanker business after agreeing to buy two companies that ship oil between U.S. ports, the companies said Monday. Kinder Morgan said it will buy American Petroleum Tankers and State Class Tankers from affiliates of private equity firms The Blackstone Group and Cerberus Capital Management for $962 million in cash. The tankers, which operate under the Jones Act to transport crude oil between U.S. ports, will expand Kinder Morgan’s ability to move oil throughout the country. This will be a new area of business for the Houston-based company, which currently has a stake in or operates 54,000 miles of pipelines and 180 terminals.
The tankers each will have a capacity of 330,000 barrels, although some of the vessels are still under construction. “We are purchasing tankers that provide stable fee-based cash flow through multiyear contracts with major credit worthy oil producers,” Schlosser said. American Petroleum Tankers’ fleet includes five tankers, with an average age of four years, making it one of the youngest fleets in the industry, Kinder Morgan said. State Class Tankers is building four vessels, which will be delivered in 2015 and 2016. Booming U.S. production of oil from shale has outpaced the development of pipelines in some areas. That has left oil companies searching for ways to move oil and increasingly turning to solutions like rail cars, tankers and barges. These will add to the volume of business at ports like that at Corpus Christi that is already shipping out shale oil in the place of pipelines. I think these companies should be able to expand by buying foreign tankers at discounted prices because the US is not importing much oil these days and a lot of them are out of service.
No Surprise: Panel finds in favour of Enbridge December 19, 2013 CALGARY – A review panel has recommended that the proposed Northern Gateway pipeline that would carry bitumen from Alberta’s oilsands to tankers on the British Columbia coast go ahead. But the panel has attached 209 conditions, which cover everything from protecting caribou habitat to research into how the oil would behave in a marine environment. The controversial proposal has pitted Calgary-based Enbridge (TSX:ENB) against environmental groups and First Nations, who have raised concerns about potential oil spills on land or in the water off the B.C. coast. The panel says any environmental effects can be mitigated effectively if its conditions are met. Supporters say the pipeline is critical if Alberta is to get its oil to emerging markets in Asia. The panel’s report says that opening up that market is important to the Canadian economy and the benefits far outweigh the risks. The panel did suggest that Enbridge must be able to prove it would have the financial resources immediately available to respond to any cleanup of a spill or other damage.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems “Northern Gateway must file with the (National Energy Board) for approval, at least nine months prior to applying for leave to open, a financial assurances plan … capable of covering the costs of liabilities for … cleanup, remediation and other damages caused by the project during the operation phase,” the report says. The final decision rests with the federal government, which has roughly six months to respond. Federal Natural Resources Minister Joe Oliver said the government will thoroughly review the report and consult with aboriginal groups before making that decision. The cost of the pipeline appears to have sky-rocketed. It had been pegged at more than $6 billion, but the report released Thursday used a $7.9-billion price tag, which includes pre-development costs and marine navigation enhancements. Enbridge said in a news release that it will work toward meeting the conditions. “We will closely analyze the panel’s conditions — many of which reflect commitments we put forward at the hearings — and continue to listen and be open to change,” project leader Janet Holder said. B.C. Environment Minister Mary Polak said the province wants to assess whether the panel’s report addresses five conditions B.C. has set out before it will support the pipeline. We are not yet in a position to consider support for any heavy oil pipeline in B.C. The Alberta government welcomed the panel’s recommendation that the pipeline go ahead. Environment Minister Diana McQueen called it a “critical milestone toward getting Alberta’s oil to new international markets.” Reaction from opponents was swift. The Raincoast Conservation Foundation said political and corporate agendas won out over the interests of the public. And David Miller of the World Wildlife Fund questioned how the panel could acknowledge the environmental risks, but still support the pipeline. “I think the case is very clear that there is a real risk to the environment, the local economy and the social well-being of people who live in this region,” Miller said. “The (joint review panel) agrees with that, yet it’s full steam ahead. “I think that decision is very unwise.” Miller suggested it’s still important for people to voice their concerns. It’s in the political arena now and it’s up to people to continue to speak up. Our First Nations friends have legal rights as well, and I’m quite certain that coastal First Nations and others will be looking to ensure that their legal rights are respected. If approved by the federal government, the pipeline will probably be just the first to put billions of dollars into the coffers of Alberta, Ottawa and other provincial governments — not to mention the bank accounts of Enbridge and the international companies with a stake in the project. The pipeline faced an uphill battle in B.C. where the environmental movement was bolstered by a decades-old “War in the Woods” against old-growth logging.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems Enbridge and the oilpatch drastically underestimated the power of Green Corp., the older, wiser and better-funded modern version of the tie-dyed denizens who were arrested trying to save trees in the 1990s. Flush with cash from green philanthropists largely from south of the border, groups such as Forest Ethics Advocacy, the Dogwood Initiative and Rising Tides mounted a relentless campaign in Canada and abroad. Growing concern over climate change has been a factor. Northern Gateway and other pipeline projects — Keystone XL to the U.S. Gulf Coast, the reversal of Enbridge’s Line 9 through Ontario and Quebec, and Kinder Morgan’s proposed expansion of its Trans Mountain line to Metro Vancouver — mean production in the Alberta oilsands could triple by 2035, also increasing greenhouse gas emissions. But protests in B.C. have been more of the grassroots, not-in-my-ocean variety. There are also concerns that the heavy, molasses-like diluted bitumen coming from the oilsands is more corrosive and difficult to clean up in the event of a spill. But perhaps the toughest hurdle for the project has been the simmering tension between B.C. First Nations and the federal government. Unlike the rest of Canada, most First Nations in the westernmost province never signed treaties with the Crown. Decades of treaty negotiations have largely gone nowhere and aboriginal rights have been left to the courts. Before Enbridge ever filed its application for the pipeline, Ottawa made the decision to let the joint review by the National Energy Board and Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency stand for its duty to consult with First Nations. “The federal government would not support a process for aboriginal consultation separate from the (joint review panel) process…,” said an internal Aboriginal Consultation Plan obtained by The Canadian Press using an Access to Information request. That didn’t go well. “We’re treated as a stakeholder in this process,” Carrie Henchitt, a lawyer for the Heiltsuk Nation, said as the panel hearings became increasingly adversarial earlier this year. “We are not just stakeholders. We have specific rights very different from other interest groups.” Many aboriginal groups opposed to the pipeline refused to take part in the review. Several indicated they were preparing court action should the project get the nod. The political backlash was not limited to First Nations. The Conservative government became defensive over oilpatch expansion and Oliver branded opponents as “foreign special interests groups” that threatened to “hijack our regulatory system to achieve their radical ideological agenda.” The government changed the rules to give cabinet the final say on approval and rewrote rules around waterways and environmental protections. It wasn’t until after the project was mired in controversy that Oliver announced rules that began to address some of the concerns around tanker and pipeline safety, and over liability in the event of a spill.
A tug tows a large barge along Princess Royal Island, B.C. Thursday, Sept, 19, 2013. Following months of hearings, years of debate and dozens of protests, the federal panel reviewing the controversial Northern Gateway pipeline released its report Thursday. They approved this very controversial project that is fully expected to be approved by Prime Minister Harper.
Suzuki slams federal review panel as 'rubber stamp' and Enbridge as having 'no credibility' December 19, 2013
Legacy â€“ February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 â€“ Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems Canada's preeminent environmentalist, David Suzuki, said Friday that Enbridge is a company with "absolutely no credibility" and that the Joint Review Panel that recommended the Northern Gateway project proceed with conditions is nothing more than a federal "rubber stamp."
"Spills will happen, there is no question about that," the Vancouver-based broadcaster and scientist told The Vancouver Sun. "The question, is what do you do about it?" He said Enbridge has engaged in a "huge public relations campaign," including expensive TV commercials, to tell British Columbians how much it cares for the environment, when in fact the company has no credibility. "If they really did care about the environment and native concerns...they would have research commitments, all kinds of things done to try to show they are working to deal with the cleanup once a spill happens." Among the panel's 209 conditions recommended Thursday, Enbridge should: research programs into oil-spill cleanup and the varying physical and chemical properties of the oil intended to be shipped, including studies into dispersion and remediation; conduct pre-operations emergency response exercises and develop an emergency preparedness and response exercise and training program. "It's absurd to say we have to do state-of-the-art research and all that after the pipeline is allowed to go through," Suzuki continued. "There is no known technology that can clean up the mess once it occurs. They can't sop up most of the oil; it's simply dispersed into the atmosphere, water or land." Suzuki said he has travelled extensively to coastal native communities and knows "they are desperate for economic development. They need jobs, they tell us that every time...So the economy is very important to them." That's why their unified opposition to Northern Gateway is all the more striking, he said. "They're telling us some things are simply more important than money, and no one is getting that." Suzuki added the fact that the panel cancelled public sessions in Bella Bella on the central coast in April because they were afraid "shows they have no sensitivity or understanding of that community..."
He added it was a "forgone conclusion" that the panel would follow the wishes of Prime Minster Stephen Harper and "rubber stamp" the project. The 1,177-kilometre pipeline would go from Bruderheim, Alta., to Kitimat, B.C.
In December 2010, First Nations across BC and Alberta came together in a show of unprecedented solidarity to stop the Enbridge Northern Gateway pipeline by signing the Save the Fraser Declaration. Representatives of over 130 First Nations throughout BC and Canada are now signatories to this powerful legal document that protects the lands and waters we all rely on from devastating oil spills for all people and all generations.
This is the critical time to
show that citizens of British Columbia and Canada stand with
First Nations to hold this wall. We, the First Nations of the Yinka Dene Alliance, continue to steward the lands and waters in our territories according to our ancestral laws. We have used those laws, expressed in the Save the Fraser Declaration, to ban Enbridge’s Northern Gateway and similar tar sands projects from our territories. Our laws require that we do this to defend the lands and waters we rely on:
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems We and other First Nations are using our lawful authority to protect the land and water from dangerous tar sands projects like Enbridge’s that threaten our way of life and that of future generations. But our collective future remains on a knife’s edge as the federal government considers approving the project.
The time is now when First Nations call on all Canadians to stand with us, in whatever way you can: with your voice, in the streets, or on the land. Can we count on you? Click below to if you are ready to make a pledge to stand with First Nations in opposition to Enbridge’s Northern Gateway pipelines and tankers project.
Let’s show that whatever it takes, people of all backgrounds will Hold The Wall along with our First Nations allies. Whatever it takes, we will stop this project from ever being built, together.
More massive tar mats from BP oil spill discovered on Louisiana beaches December 18, 2013 The 2010 Deepwater Horizon disaster was just a month old and BP’s crude oil was still gushing from the Gulf floor when state officials began to grasp the true scope of the insult to Louisiana’s coast: Beaches, estuaries and wetlands would be under assault for decades.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems “I’ve been told by the ocean experts this stuff could hang out there on the bottom of the Gulf for more than 100 years. And as long as it’s out there, it can come ashore,” said Robert Barham, Secretary of the state Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, in 2010. “We might not see big black waves, but we may be seeing a smaller, but serious problem, for years and years to come.” The accuracy of that prediction is visible once again on the Lafourche Parish beach between Elmer’s Island and Port Fourchon, where a line of mud haulers waits to collect BP oil being unearthed by giant excavators digging just yards from the Gulf waves. According to the U.S. Coast Guard, in the past few weeks this one spot has yielded 1.5 million pounds of “oily material” – a designation that includes oil products as well as associated shell, sand and water. And that’s in addition to 1.79 million pounds already collected from Fourchon, by far the largest share of the 8.9 million pounds recovered from all Louisiana beaches in the past two years. The heavy ongoing cleanup is emblematic of the problems spill experts say Louisiana can expect due to the rapid erosion of its coastline, especially along the beaches between Grand Isle and Port Fourchon. The rapid shoreline retreat in this area has resulted in a silt-filled backwash in the nearshore shallows. Patches of Deepwater Horizon oil that reached this zone became embedded with sand, shells and mud particles in the water column, creating malleable tar balls, patties and mats, depending on their size.
These are more than mere eyesores. The weathered oil contains toxic hydrocarbon components that can remain a threat to fish, wildlife and human health for 50 years. So even small tar balls must be cleaned up. Gunk not quickly collected by cleanup crews soon became covered with sand and submerged by the advancing Gulf. They disappeared from view – but only temporarily. Weather events that bring rough waves and high tides often uncover the pieces, sometimes picking them up and spreading them spread across the beach and into adjacent marshes. That happened again in October, during Tropical Storm Karen, which limped across the southeast Louisiana coast as a tropical depression. The Coast Guard assessment team that searched the Fourchon Beach area hadn’t expected to find much. That made the recent discovery of a large mat surprising, public information officer Michael Anderson said. “That was a big mat – we collected 53,000 pounds from that one site,” he said. The size of the mat triggered another search. During the spill the parish and state had used booms and other material to block four channels leading from the beach to the interior marsh in an effort to keep the oil from coating vegetation. It was a prudent decision; the beach area became one of the most heavily oiled in the entire Gulf.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems “During the spill we collected a lot of oil that was building up against those structures,” Anderson said. But as time went on, storms and shoreline changes buried the structures. When the post-Karen mat was discovered in one of those channels, the search was on for the remaining three. It paid off. One site, which is still under excavation, has yielded 780,000 pounds; another 53,000 pounds were found at the third site; the third contained 320 pounds, and the fourth was clean. BP spokesman Jason Ryan said in an email that the only place where a “sizable deposit” of oily material was found after Tropical Storm Karen was at Fourchon Beach, “where the area’s deep channel and breach structure, combined with previous storms, created an environment where sediment collected in a way that was unlike any other area in Louisiana.” He continued, “This is not new material that washed ashore; it was buried under 6 to 9 feet of sand deposited by tropical storms in 2010 and 2011. The oiled material is 85-90% sand, shells, silt, and water, and 10-15% heavily-weathered residual oil. However, in these breach areas it is difficult to separate this oiled material from the surrounding clean sand, which is reflected in the volume of material recovered.” Discovery of those buried deposits proved the wisdom of what’s called the Louisiana Augering and Sequential Recovery Program, which involves boring holes through the beach layers about every 30 feet. Anderson said about 5,800 holes were bored over 5.8 miles of Fourchon Beach — 14,366 across Louisiana beaches in total. A caravan of loaders testifies to the amount of oily gunk uncovered near Fourchon Beach in recent weeks. The need for such thorough investigation was obvious after tar mats laid bare by storm action showed that BP’s oil is so prevalent in some areas that the Coast Guard resorted to doing complete beach restorations. So far the program has led to removal of 4.7 million pounds of oily muck. Most of it was sand, but sand so laden with oil that removal was the only option.
“In some sections we’ve had to dig down to the clay and peat layer that supports the beach – about three to four feet deep – and just remove the sand and replace it with new, clean sand,” Anderson said. “That was the only way to really get the job done.” But as Barham, the Wildlife and Fisheries chief, knew two years ago, the work in fact is far from complete. “We do have new tar balls coming ashore on these new beaches,” Anderson said. “This Fourchon area is really the most problematic place in the entire area of operation – the entire Gulf from Florida to Texas. “We know after each storm we’ll probably be finding something.” And in Louisiana, coastal storms aren’t going to stop anytime soon.
dissatisfied with Fraser Surrey Docks environmental review of proposed coal facility December 16, 2013
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems B.C.'S BIGGEST CREDIT union has criticized Surrey Fraser Docks' environmental impact assessment of a proposed Direct Transfer Coal Facility, calling it "entirely inadequate". Vancity's regional director of community member services, Mike Matsuo, wrote to Port Metro Vancouver today (December 16) to say that credit-union officials have analyzed an evaluation by the chief medical health officers of Fraser Health and Vancouver Coastal Health. Based on this, Vancity has concluded that "Port Metro Vancouver must not move forward on the proposed Direct Coal Transfer Facility until the important issues raised by the two health authorities are addressed to their satisfaction." "Moving forward on any proposal without an EIA that meets the basic requirements of the local health authorities would, in our view, be ill-advised," Matsuo wrote. The environmental-impact assessment was prepared by SNC-Lavalin. Burlington Northern Santa Fe railway, which is controlled by U.S. billionaire Warren Buffett's holding company, wants to import coal to the Direct Transfer Coal Facility, which would handle an additional four million metric tonnes per year. From there, the coal would be shipped on barges to Texada Island for export. The application includes a potential to eventually increase the annual shipments to eight million metric tonnes per year. According to the chief medical health officers, Paul Van Buynder and Patricia Daly, most of the modelling work about the project's effects was done by Levelton Consultants Inc. "The assessment of potential health impacts is particularly disappointing, and receives minimal attention in the document," Van Buynder and Daly wrote. "Of note, much greater consideration is given to the potential effects of the project on plants, fish and wildlife than to people. The report does not meet even the most basic requirements of a health impact assessment." They went on to say that SNC-Lavalin included a four-page summary describing general air toxins and their health effects, but there was "no link to this project". "The appendix includes a short letter written by a toxicologist, Dr. Leonard Ritter, with his opinion about the potential health impacts of coal dust," Van Buynder and Daly added. "The letter is based on the assumption that the Levelton model is accurate, and includes only a single reference pertaining to the potential health impacts of coal dust. No discussion is included of any other potential health impacts. This single toxicologist’s opinion does not meet the standards of a health impact assessment." Last May, Fraser Surrey Docks CEO Jeff Scott told the media that he believes the proposed project "delivers environmental standards that we all expect and deserve".
Port-ordered environmental assessment of Surrey coal project panned December 23, 2013
Public comments were overwhelming negative over Port Metro Vancouver’s environmental impact assessment of the proposed $15-million Surrey Fraser Docks coal-handling facility. About 3,500 comments were received by the port criticizing the assessment or the project, compared to six positive comments, according to a group opposed to the project — Voters Taking Action for Climate Change (VTACC) — that reviewed the comments. Nearly 3,400 of the negative comments were submitted through a website, realporthearings.org, created by coal export opponents. The comments were posted on Port Metro Vancouver’s website following the close of a 30-day comment period on Dec. 17. They can be viewed at bit.ly/18IDinE. “I don’t see how they can possibly approve (the Surrey project) in the next little while, and possibly show any respect for the process that they initiated,” said VTACC director Kevin Washbrook. “They’ve got some serious comment and expert critiques, and they’ve got to show they’ve taken the time to consider them.” Port Metro Vancouver officials declined to comment Monday directly on the overwhelming negative public response to its environmental impact assessment. Instead, the port provided a statement on its review process, which noted that public comment will be considered in its final decision. There is no timeline on the port’s decision. The port’s statement noted that changes have already been made to the Surrey project as result of public concerns, including not having a temporary coal stockpile at the Surrey Fraser Docks. The company is also required to ensure coal dust does not blow off rail cars. In September the port ordered Fraser Surrey Docks to do more work to assess the health and ecological effects of its coal-handling facility in response to public concerns. The port authority said a new environmental impact assessment report must cover issues such as the health effects of coal dust, increased train traffic and noise. However, the environmental impact assessment of Surrey Fraser Docks was criticized by the Vancouver Coastal and Fraser Valley health authorities’ chief medical health officers as not adequate to address potential health impacts. Environmental and community groups also questioned the adequacy of the assessment carried out by SNC-Lavalin. The groups have been fighting the export of thermal coal from the U.S. Midwest to countries such as China to generate electricity, in part, because it will contribute to global warming.
CN sues Westshore Terminals over three accidents involving coal trains December 17, 2013 METRO VANCOUVER -- Canadian National Railway is suing Westshore Terminals in a series of civil claims that the Delta coal terminal has been negligent in its handling of coal trains on three separate occasions. The civil lawsuits, filed in B.C. Supreme Court in New Westminster, concern three accidents that allegedly caused damage to trains in 2011 and 2012. In two of the three notices of civil claim, CN alleges Westshore Terminals in Roberts Bank caused a pair of locomotives to tip over while dumping coal onto train cars. A third notice claims a locomotive derailed on a defective track at Westshore Terminals. CN claims its locomotives required repairs as a result of these incidents and is seeking damages. A spokesman for CN, Mark Hallman said the company has no further comment as the case is before the courts. Westshore Terminals is North America's largest coal exporting port and the main shipping point for metallurgical coal from Teck Resources mines in eastern British Columbia. It is also used by U.S. coal companies for shipping thermal coal from mines in U.S. Midwest. In December 2012, the company suffered a blow when a large bulk carrier destroyed a coal conveyor system while docking, knocking out the largest of the port's two berths and spilling an undetermined amount of coal into Georgia Strait. The spill off the Fraser delta fuelled environmentalists in their fight against the growing volume of coal exports through Port Metro Vancouver.
Wall Street Giant Backs Away From Washington Coal Export Project January 7, 2014
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems A multinational banking giant is backing away from a proposal to build the West Coast’s biggest coal export project near Bellingham, Washington. New York-based Goldman Sachs has sold its stock back to the companies proposing to build the Gateway Pacific Terminal. If built it would transfer 48 million tons of Wyoming coal each year from trains to ocean-going vessels bound for Asia. The move comes less than six months after a Goldman Sachs published a research paper titled, "The window for thermal coal investment is closing." Before the stock transfer, Goldman Sachs had a 49 percent stake in the Gateway Pacific project. The company proposing the project is SSA Marine. Its parent company is Carrix, Inc. SSA Marine President Bob Watters said in a statement that after Goldman Sachs sold back its stock, a Mexican businessman named Fernando Chico Pardo made an investment in SSA’s parent company that gives him a 49 percent ownership.
Coal-export opponents said the departure of Goldman Sachs as an investor is the latest sign that Wall Street no longer sees a profitable future in mining, shipping and burning coal – considered the dirtiest sources of energy and one of the biggest sources of greenhouse gases that contribute to global climate change. “Goldman Sachs’ stepping away from coal export is yet another sign from Wall Street that coal export is a losing investment,” said anti-coal activist Crina Hoyer, the executive director of Bellinghambased RE Sources for Sustainable Communities. SSA Marine and Carrix, Inc., sought to cast the departure of Goldman Sachs in a more positive light. According to their press release, Chico Pardo and the project’s original investors had stepped in with a “substantial capital injection” and remained committed to the coal export project.
Overall, the push to export Montana and Wyoming coal through the Pacific Northwest’s has struggled. Of the six coal export terminal originally proposed in Washington and Oregon, three have been dropped. In addition to the Gateway Pacific terminal on the northern shore of Puget Sound, the two other terminals still being considered are proposed for ports on the Columbia River in Washington and Oregon.
Crews clean up a chemical spill along the Elk River in Charleston, W.Va., which compromised the public water supply of eight counties on Thursday, Jan. 9, 2014
Government Declares State of Emergency After West Virginia Chemical Spill U.S. Attorney opens investigation into the cause of spill that has affected 9 counties January 10, 2014
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems The federal government joined West Virginia Governor Earl Ray Tomblin in declaring a state of emergency following a chemical spill along one of the state’s major rivers. The spill has caused authorities to issue a water ban in nine counties that could affect an estimated 100,000 residents. Federal officials are now launching an investigation into the cause of the spill, U.S. Attorney Booth Goodwin announced Friday. The emergency and accompanying ban were issued after the toxic chemical 4-methylcyclohexane methanol, which is used to process coal, leaked from a tank at a Freedom Industries plant in the capital city Charleston and spilled into the Elk River. The full extent of the spill remains unknown. “Until we get out and flush the actual system and do more testing, we can’t say how long this [advisory] will last,” West Virginia American Water president Jeff McIntyre told the Associated Press. The chemical is not lethal even its most concentrated form, McIntyre said, but according to the AP it is a skin and eye irritant that can be harmful if swallowed or inhaled. Residents in the Mountain State’s nine affected counties were instructed by officials to not “to drink, cook with or wash” with local tap water due to the increased level of toxicity, according to the Charleston Gazette. The water ban affects any establishment that uses tap water, including normal residences but also restaurants, hospitals, and nursing facilities. Customers in the capital, where parts of the city are redolent with a smell described as “licorice-like,” rushed to buy up available bottled water and paper dishes. The West Virginia National Guard planned Friday to deliver bottled water to emergency services agencies. Counties affected by the spill include Kanawha, Boone, Cabell, Clay, Jackson, Lincoln, Logan, Putnam and Roane. Schools will be closed in at least five counties.
“…according to the Toxicology Data Network, high exposures to the chemical can cause death.”
A train in Burnaby derailed Saturday morning at Government Street at Brighton Avenue.
Coal spills into Burnaby, B.C. creek after CP train derailment January 11, 2014 Related CTV News video HERE
Downstream impacts HERE
Officials are investigating after a Canadian Pacific Railway coal train derailed in Burnaby, B.C. Saturday morning, according to Mounties. The 152-car train went off its tracks at Government Street and Brighton Avenue just before 11 a.m. causing three cars to derail. Several other cars were damaged, but Mounties said no one was injured. Mounties said some coal spilled into a nearby creek and environmental agencies have been called to the scene. The train tracks are maintained by the Canadian National Railway Company. The Transportation Safety Board and CP are also responding. Traffic in the area is being affected.
Several train cars ran off the tracks in Burnaby Saturday morning.
Officials are investigating what caused the train to go off its rails, but Mounties said early indications suggest rain may have washed out the ground below the tracks.
IN DEPTH: Coal development in B.C. Transport by rail has become a contentious topic across the country after a train containing crude oil derailed and exploded in Lac-Megantic, Que., in July, killing 47 people, and another train exploded without injuries recently in North Dakota. On Tuesday, 17 cars derailed near Wapske, New Brunswick, a town about five kilometres outside Plaster Rock. Five of them were carrying crude oil that was destined for an Irving Oil refinery in Saint John. Last week, B.C. premier Christy Clark and Alberta premier Alison Redford announced they are examining the idea of transporting oilsands’ crude via rail if proposed pipelines don’t get the green light. It’s a move environmental group ForestEthics calls “underhanded.” It’s a “backdoor way for industry to bring tankers to the coast without the same sort of public oversight or public process that we’ve had around the Enbridge pipeline or would have around the Kinder Morgan pipeline,” said Ben West, campaign director for ForestEthics. READ MORE: Rail safety in Canada The joint provincial working group will develop recommendations related to energy exports and the opening of new export markets for products like bitumen for the two provinces, including pipeline and rail transport.
Hydropower and water retention
Guest opinion: Columbia River plan fails to protect salmon Sam Mace The best fall chinook salmon run in years has made this a banner season for Columbia Basin anglers. River towns, outfitters, shops and motels throughout our region have shared in this unexpected bounty. Unfortunately, the news about many of our region’s other salmon and steelhead populations is far less encouraging. And the future for all the basin’s endangered wild salmon remains very much in doubt. Amid this busy fishing season, federal agencies have released a draft of their latest plan to restore endangered Columbia-Snake salmon. Ironically, the government’s fourth attempt in 12 years to craft a legal Biological Opinion calls for rolling back the very provisions that helped bring our iconic fish home this year – most notably additional spill.
For years the Bonneville Power Administration and the other agencies have resisted calls by fishing and conservation groups, the State of Oregon, the Nez Perce Tribe and the federal judiciary to develop a recovery plan guided by science and law. The recently released draft plan fails to address the issues that forced the court to reject the three previous versions. Worse, it would cut back on existing critical protections for wild salmon, including spilling water over dams to aid young salmon’s spring-summer migration to the ocean. Rather than build on this limited success, the agencies want to take us backward. The federal court began ordering increased spill in the spring and summer in 2006, and wild salmon – and fishing businesses – have benefited greatly. While current court-ordered spill levels have aided endangered populations, 13 Columbia Basin stocks remain at risk of extinction. More help is needed. Spill is our most effective near-term measure for restoring wild salmon and steelhead, allowing the river to flow more naturally and speeding fish more quickly and safely to the ocean. Science tells us that more spill – not less – is one of the most effective immediate actions we can take. Many state, federal and tribal scientists believe greater spill actually could recover some at-risk Columbia River populations.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems But the agencies’ draft plan ignores the scientists, their findings and their call for an enhanced spill test. Unless their final plan, due in January, incorporates the spill test and other significant improvements, the federal agencies will surely plunge our region into yet another expensive, timeconsuming round of litigation. To pass legal muster, the final plan must address the concerns the court raised in its 2011 ruling. It must include, for example, an analysis of lower Snake River dam removal. It must consider other, more aggressive measures for moving salmon through the hydrosystem. And it must address the effects of climate change. On all these crucial matters, the draft is silent. The agencies can get this right. They can produce a scientifically sound plan that complies with the law and protects and restores endangered salmon and steelhead. We need our elected leaders, including Gov. Jay Inslee and U.S. Sens. Patty Murray and Maria Cantwell, to push them to end their wasteful and destructive litigation loop. Lasting peace in the Columbia Basin depends on leadership from our elected officials. They can call all interests to the table to consider all credible recovery options, including but not limited to restoration of a free-flowing lower Snake River. Energy interests, farmers, shippers, tribes and communities in other areas have forged joint solutions – some involving removal of aging, costly dams – to restore fisheries and local economies. The people of the Columbia-Snake are ready to move forward together; our political leaders must lead the way. Sam Mace is the Inland Northwest Director for Save Our Wild Salmon, a coalition of fishing businesses, conservation groups and clean-energy advocates working to restore wild salmon and steelhead to the Columbia and Snake rivers.
HOLY HYDRO SKYKOMISH SUNSET? THE SKYKOMISH RIVER IS WELL KNOWN AMONG steelhead fly fishermen. What is not widely known about this tributary of the Snohomish is that it’s one of Washington’s last remaining undammed and free-flowing rivers. The Sky is widely recognized for its outstanding aesthetic and recreational value. The South Fork has been nominated for protection under the Federal Wild and Scenic Rivers Act. It has also been designated by the Northwest Power and Conservation Council as one of only four Washington State Scenic Rivers. These designations are supposed to provide some protection from hydroelectric development. In this era of dam removal and with these designations you would think the Sky would be protected – and you would be wrong. Fly fishing on the Sky dates back to the beginning of the 20th century. Two pioneers of modern steelhead fishing Ken and son George McLeod call the Sky homewaters. Through decades of angling experience and work with Scientific Anglers the McLeods are credited with many of the pioneering techniques and fly lines used today in the pursuit of steelhead. Most notably the McLeod’s designed several flies which, after many decades, are still considered among the most effective patterns in steelhead fishing. One of those flies came to be in 1936 as father and son drove along Highway 2 winding their way up along the Skykomish River. The pre-dawn Pacific Northwest morning was grey and gloomy - so common that time of year. As the sun rose behind the Cascades the morning sky ignited in brilliant fire. As they admired the sight, Ken said to his son, “tie me a fly with those colors in it.” George later took the red, yellow, and white of that Cascade morning and tied what would be named the Skykomish Sunrise. But the McLeods weren’t just pioneering anglers; they were also deeply involved in the protection of their river and its wild fish. As a founding member of the Steelhead Trout Club of Washington, Ken was an active advocate for river enhancement and steelhead protection. Good thing because over the decades the Sky has suffered through many of the insults of progress and development. Miraculously, several attempts to dam the river have been thwarted by organizations like the Steelhead Trout Club of Washington. In Washington and the rest of the US damming of rivers has a long and often shameful history. When Europeans first colonized the New World they found forests said to be as thick as the Amazon. Coastal streams and rivers were clogged with vast runs of Atlantic salmon larger than anyone had ever seen. Mill dams were indiscriminately erected to power the rapid expansion of civilization.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems By the mid 1700s it was clear that salmon populations were in free fall. Over just a few decades that followed most runs of wild Atlantic salmon on the eastern seaboard would become functionally extinct. Having learned their lessons from the devastation dams caused in Europe and New England, our pioneering forefathers faced west. Provisions were made to protect salmon runs in the Oregon territorial constitution. Later Washington State law required fish passage where dams were constructed. These measures were largely ineffective and all but ignored with the rapid influx of settlers eager to exploit the riches of the west. This disregard reached a pinnacle with the construction of two illegal dams on the Elwha River on Washington’s Olympic Peninsula. The dams effectively blocked passage of what was thought one of the largest Chinook salmon known in modern history. But rather than order their immediate removal the state fish commissioner, under the direction of the governor, waived the requirement for fish passage if an adjoining hatchery was constructed. Thus set in motion what today has evolved into Washington’s failed fisheries management plan. In fact, Washington state went on to see the damming of more rivers than any other state in the union -- 1,200 in all. But Washington is not alone. After a long court battle California’s Tuolumne River below Yosemite was dammed destroying John Muir’s beloved Hetch Hetchy Valley. Seven dams were constructed along the Coosa River in Alabama - dams the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service described as “one of the largest extinction events in North America . . .” The Columbia River was dammed in eleven locations and Snake River sixteen. After the completion of the Glen Canyon Dam on the Colorado River in 1963, hydroelectric interests even mounted an effort to construct two more dams in the Grand Canyon - an initiative only narrowly defeated in Congress. In all there are more than 75,000 dams in the US. These dams are sold as green renewable energy sources by hydroelectric power interests and others. But what is quickly forgotten is that river systems are zones of the highest biodiversity on earth. The price for damming: whole sale loss of aquatic habitat, impacts to the biological and chemical properties of rivers and riparian environments, sedimentation issues including riverbed deepening below dams, the virtual extinction of many bird, plant, and fish species including some of the largest salmon and steelhead runs on earth. And if that weren’t enough, studies indicate that some large dams and reservoirs cause greenhouse gas emissions which in total may equal the aviation industry. So a century after the illegal construction of the Elwha River dams we celebrate their removal. Meanwhile, only a short distance away a utility prepares to dam one of the last free flowing Washington Rivers. The Snohomish Public Utility District (SNOPUD) was awarded a preliminary permit in March of 2012 to study construction of a new run of the river dam that would add to the nearly 1,200 dams already existing in Washington State. The proposed location is just below Sunset Falls on the South Fork. The project would siphon 2,500 (cf/s) out of the river below Eagle Falls, and pipe it around a 1.1 mile section of the now free-flowing South Fork. To produce just 13.7 megawatts of average annual generation; only 1% of the PUD’s power needs – ONE PERCENT. The project would greatly reduce flows over two of the state’s most scenic waterfalls, Canyon and Sunset Falls, and would reduce spring time flows by nearly 50% and autumn and winter flows by nearly 90%. FERC has received the Notice of Intent and Preliminary Application from the Snohomish PUD to move ahead with the dam. Those who fail to learn the lessons of history are doomed to repeat them
Iowa lake and dam to be restored after 2010 flood January 9, 2014
Legacy â€“ February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 â€“ Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems After a flood caused millions of dollars in damages, a repair project has been approved to reconstruct a washed-out dam. KCRG reported that reconstruction of the washed-out Lake Delhi dam will likely be done during 2014, according to lake district officials. It is expected that by early February an Army Corps of Engineers permit will be obtained for phase one of the project, which includes repairing and upgrading the flood-damaged powerhouse. According to CBS News, in 2010 the dam on Lake Delhi was washed-out by floodwater from the Maquoketa River. A 30-foot-wide hole was reportedly ripped out of the dam which caused water to drop 45-feet to the river below. Homes in the town of Hopkinton were surrounded by floodwaters and residents were forced to evacuate. Plans for phase two were still reportedly being worked out with the Department of Natural Resources. Phase two would include the construction of an earthen dam and spillway. To prepare for the re-watering of the lake, property owners in the area removed trees and brush from the lower portion of the lake bed during the fall of 2013. According to KCRG, in September 2013 district trustees withdrew their application for Federal Emergency Management Agency assistance to recover from the 2010 flood that tore through the dam. The district is working with FEMA to determine if it will have to repay any of the $3.6 million in FEMA funds that were used for repairs after a 2008 flood. The president of the board of trustees of the Combined Lake Delhi Recreational Facility and Water Quality District has estimated that restoring the lake will cost $15 million.
What could become the largest dam removal and river restoration project in the state's history is set to begin a new multi-million dollar phase.
Boardman River dam project enters $13 million phase
Legacy â€“ February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 â€“ Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems GRAND TRAVERSE COUNTY (Michigan) -- What could become the largest dam removal and river restoration project in the state's history is set to begin a new multi million dollar phase. According to the implementation team, the Boardman River Dam Project's phase II is now underway, with preliminary work including final design, channel investigation, geotechnical data investigation and permitting for the removal of Boardman and Sabin Dams and the modification of Union Street Dam. Phase II consists of reestablishing two miles of river channel, reconnecting an additional 13 miles of river channel for fish passage, improving two miles of habitat between the current Boardman and Sabin waterways, and modifying the Union Street Dam for improved fish passage and sea lamprey control. Phase II construction could be completed in 2015 if the funds are in place. The estimated cost of Phase II is between 13 and 15 million dollars. Approximately 4.4. million dollars has been approved at this time. The Boardman River Dam Project is currently at the center of lawsuits filed by residents who say the removal of the dams has made their property vulnerable to floods.
Otter's water: Governor aims to build dams January 7, 2014 BOISE, Idaho -- Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter aims to build billions of dollars' worth of new and expanded dams as part of his dream of capturing more water in the drought-stricken southern desert of Idaho to irrigate potatoes, grow cities and industry, and flush endangered salmon to the sea. The Republican has asked lawmakers for a $15 million down payment for, among other things, studies to help decide whether a modern era of dam building makes financial sense. Among the projects pushed by Otter is a $502 million dam on western Idaho's Weiser River, upstream from where it flows into the Snake River. The parched climate of the state, where river basins are well behind average snowfall again as winter advances, appears to be adding urgency to the governor's push. "It is a critical investment in our capacity for responsible future growth," Otter told lawmakers Monday, as he began lobbying for the cash. Activist groups are skeptical, saying the Weiser project, known as the Galloway Dam among its supporters, would have been built during Idaho's dam-building heyday decades ago if it made sense. The project got $2 million in 2011 for a study on whether the Weiser area is seismically suited for a dam that could store up to 750,000 acre feet of water — more than double the capacity of the Lucky Peak Reservoir on the Boise River. The initial conclusion was that a dam would be safe. Now, Otter wants to shift another $2 million to the Galloway project for environmental work and to analyze how a complicated land exchange necessary for the project to go ahead could work. Kevin Lewis of the Boise-based group Idaho Rivers United predicts the spending won't show many results. "Times have changed," Lewis said. "We don't have the money to be running around and building dams just for the sake of building dams." America's dam-building spree lasted 50 years, ending about 1980. Idaho was in the thick of it, from the completion of Idaho Power Co.'s three-dam Hells Canyon Complex on the Snake River by the 1960s to the Teton Dam on eastern Idaho's Teton River that failed spectacularly in 1976 as it was nearing completion. The disaster left 11 people and thousands of head of livestock dead as towns like Sugar City were submersed.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems Brian Patton, planning bureau chief at the state Department of Water Resources, says naysayers like Lewis shouldn't dismiss new Idaho dams as a dream ill-suited for the modern era. He points to water-storage projects on Washington state's Yakima River as examples of how dams can advance, especially in areas of the West where water is a scarce commodity. On the Weiser River, for instance, a new dam could have multiple benefits, Patton insists, from controlling floods and irrigating crops to producing up to 40 megawatts of clean hydropower. Impounded water could be released to cool overheated Snake River reservoirs downstream — something Idaho Power is under federal pressure to fix — as well as help resolve water conflicts on the Upper Snake River, hundreds of miles upstream, he said. There, infighting between irrigators, cities and fish farms has been complicated by a landmark 2004 agreement with the Nez Perce Indian Tribe, with its commitments to flush water to aid salmon returning to the Pacific Ocean. Idaho Power is participating in studies to ensure any new Weiser dam doesn't disrupt existing hydroelectric projects and power generation. "It's all about the timing, and location where water is delivered from," said Kresta Davis-Butts, Idaho Power's operations hydrology leader.
Guest: How we can use nature to fend off flooding in Puget Sound Nature itself can be used as a defense against the rising threat of flooding in Puget Sound due to climate change, according to guest columnists Michael S. Stevens and Mary Ruckelshaus. SOMETHING is happening in our river valleys, on fertile farmlands and along our shorelines. Record floods and tides make clear that something has changed. “We’re sitting here on the pointy end of the pineapple express,” says Jay Gordon, a third-generation farmer on the Chehalis River and executive director of the Washington State Dairy Federation. “The climate-change theory that we’re going to see more rain and more floods — it’s not a theory. We’re living it.” Gordon says farmers in his area are seeing a longer flood season with more frequent rains and higher high-water marks. Similarly, farmers in the Skagit River delta say it’s harder to keep their fields drained. And in places such as Stanwood and Orting, municipal leaders are making plans to cope with tides that wash over sea walls and rivers that overflow banks. “These changes are real, they are consistent with anticipated changes due to climate, and they are affecting those of us who live in the Puget Sound region,” says Joshua Lawler, one of the lead authors for the U.S. National Climate Assessment released earlier this year. “Scientists, farmers and other landowners living near rivers and coasts know the facts — we are seeing more rain-on-snow events and higher seas. These are leading, in turn, to bigger and more frequent floods and larger storm surges on our shorelines.” To prevent the worst effects of this long-term trend, we must act now to adapt to and mitigate the impacts of climate change and the rising waters it brings. Amazingly, nature itself can be used as a defense against these increasing threats. One of the most critical things we can do through public policy and smart investments is to give all that water someplace to go. We can protect farms, roads, towns and cities by protecting and restoring floodplains, marshes, wetlands and forests that can absorb or redirect water. In Orting, for example, there are plans to set back levees on the Puyallup River to create more room for floodwaters to safely spread without damaging property or endangering people. In Stanwood, local leaders are looking at the aging sea dikes that keep Skagit Bay from flooding across farm fields and into the city. In nearby Port Susan Bay, levees have been removed, allowing saltwater marshland to absorb the energy of waves before they slam into a new sea dike, helping to protect farmlands behind it. King County’s Flood Hazard Management Plan, adopted in November, calls for setting back levees and reconnecting floodplains that have been disconnected from their rivers by past land use. These actions will increase the resilience of the river system, providing big benefits for people who live along those rivers, as well as for farmers and industry in the river valleys.
Legacy â€“ February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 â€“ Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems Our Legislature has approved $50 million for projects to restore floodplains in Puget Soundâ€™s major rivers, reducing flood risk to people and property, providing salmon habitat and other community benefits, and laying the foundation for more resilient communities. We are lucky. The natural landscapes of Western Washington were made for rain and coastal storms. The dunes, forests and marshes along our coastlines and rivers have been protecting human communities from erosion and flooding for thousands of years. Restoring and protecting our floodplains and coastal systems would help absorb some of the shocks that climate change will bring. But, given that the greatest impacts of climate change are yet to come, those systems need our help to bolster their ability to protect us. We can support local and regional projects that strengthen our natural defenses by restoring and protecting the functioning habitats of our rivers and coasts. Working floodplains and coastal systems are our best protection against climate-driven flooding, but they can only help us if we invest in them.
Hydropower Generation via proposed Chehalis River dam (Washington state) Published with permission by Vince Panesko - minor editing January 5, 2014 In the past month or so, there have been e-mails questioning the wisdom of power generation from a dam on the Chehalis River above Pe Ell. The facts do not support power generation. Most people on the (Chehalis River Basin) Flood Authority are not aware of these facts, and therefore stumble into unknown territory because of lobbying by the misguided Lewis County PUD, Lewis County Commissioners and the Chronicle newspaper. Here are the facts: Today, January 5, 2014 the flow of the:
Columbia River in the Tri-Cities area is about 100,000 cubic feet per second. This rate is low and rises to as much as 500,000 during flood stage in June and July. The rate is lower upstream and higher downstream. Because of this rate, the multiple dams on the Columbia river are generating a very significant amount of power to keep the State of Washington warm this winter. Cowlitz River through the Cowlitz Falls dam is 8,000 cubic feet per second. A more typical yeararound rate is 4,000 cubic feet per second. This dam is also generating much-needed electricity into the grid. Chehalis River at the proposed dam site is 150 cubic feet per second. This is slightly higher than summertime flows experienced between May and October each year. This flow is so low, that any consideration of generating electricity would have to be considered ridiculous.
In other words, anybody with a computer can tell within 2minutes that the flow on the Chehalis River above Pe Ell is so low that the capability to generate electricity is nonexistent. A look at the historical river flow this winter has shown most of the winter the rate has been below 200 cubic feet per second. There have been a couple of episodes of rain which kicked the rate up for a day or so, but then it drops right down again. The Pe Ell site is unsuitable for meaningful hydropowergeneration. A key point is just how much water does it take to maintain the Chehalis River in a healthy condition to maintain fish runs.
Chehalis River – Near proposed dam site May 2010 – before summer low flows Photo: Jim Wilcox
At a wintertime flow of 150 to 200 cubic feet per second above Pe Ell, there is no extra water to be stored. The little water that is available is needed to maintain river flow downstream.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems The question then shifts to why the board of directors of the Lewis County PUD believes it worthy to pursue a dam on the Chehalis River south of Pe Ell where there is such a low wintertime flow that cannot generate enough electricity to justify ANY investment of public funds. The obvious answer is that once every 5 to 10 years there is a significant flood where water could be stored, and for that following spring, the stored water could be released cooling the area between Pe Ell and Doty, but having insignificant cooling downstream where it is needed the most (between Chehalis and Centralia). The unanswered question, and one that the Flood Authority seems to avoid, is that “Can such periodic bursts of electrical production justify the cost of building a power plant that only operates once every 5 to 10 years?” My hunch is that the board of directors have been mis-guided by people who look for flood protection and who reach out for any justification possible, including production of electricity. I have never understood why the Lewis County PUD wants to enter into the job of flood protection when their main mission is generation and distribution of electrical power. Flood protection has historically been the responsibility of the (US Army) Corps of Engineers. The fact that the Lewis County PUD spent $80,000 of rate-payers’ money on the first (and extremely flawed study) of two dams in western Lewis County is evidence that their leadership has strayed from their primary purpose. I have seen this example of flawed leadership over and over in Lewis County. And now we have the Lewis County PUD proposing power generation on a river that has such a low flow that hydropower generation appears to be an absurd idea. History is full of myopic leaders who had ideas which now appear mis-guided. One member of the flood authority from a Lewis County interest has publicly proclaimed to the flood authority that it is his goal to get a dam built south of Pe Ell. With this kind of thinking on the Flood Authority, it is easy to see that facts do not matter….at least to the myopic culture in the Lewis County area (many references available upon request). I hope that the comparative flows between the Columbia River, the Cowlitz River and the Chehalis River reveal how ridiculous it is to even suggest a power-generating dam on the Chehalis River. The Chehalis River is driven by rainfall and does not have the larger flows of rivers (e.g. Columbia, Cowlitz) which are driven by snowpacks in the mountains. My opinion is that people who fail to recognize this fundamental difference are in no position to make decisions for the public good. Let us work to educate the public with as much scientific evidence as possible, and let us work together to over-come those in public office who have their own agenda without regard for scientific evidence. To some extent, we are still in the dark ages.
Folsom Dam may cut outflows in delicate balancing act Watch video coverage HERE January 2, 2014 FOLSOM, Calif. - In a desperate attempt to avoid a water crisis in the coming months, the operator of Folsom Dam may reduce outflows to the bare minimum necessary to protect spawning steelhead trout in the American River. Bureau of Reclamation Central California area manager Drew Lessard said his staff was in talks with federal and state wildlife officials to determine how much outflows could be cut without harming the winter run of the trout, a federally-protected species. At 363 feet above sea level, Folsom Lake has never been so low in January; the dam is currently releasing four times more water than is flowing into the reservoir. "We're proposing to reduce our flows into the American River so we can maintain water conservation in the dam," Lessard said. Following the driest calendar year in recorded history, the Bureau of Reclamation has also begun planning for something the dam designers apparently never imagined. As water levels continue to drop, the intake - that delivers the domestic water supply to hundreds of thousands of people - will go above water level. The 7-foot diameter municipal and industrial water intake, which serves Folsom, Roseville and the San Juan Water District, is buried in the dam with the centerline 317 feet above sea level. If the level of Folsom Lake drops another 43 feet, the intake could see daylight for the first time since the dam was built in 1955. Lessard said in a worst-case scenario, a barge could be floated in one of the pools above the dam to pump water through a flexible line up to the intake. He's still hoping that unprecedented water restrictions being implemented in communities that rely on Folsom Lake water along with reductions in outflows will keep the intake from going dry. "I think right now, avoidance is the key," he said.
Liquefied Natural Gas
David Suzuki on Christy Clark's LNG plans: 'Be serious' The environmentalist questions how "clean" LNG is, arguing for renewable energy instead Watch CBC news video HERE December 2, 2013 David Suzuki is taking aim at B.C. Premier Christy Clark's claim that developing a liquid natural gas industry in B.C. will help slow climate change, arguing it's time Clark "be serious about where we're heading" with our reliance on fossil fuels.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems The outspoken environmentalist made the remarks as Premier Christy Clark tours parts of Asia to drum up interest and investment in her government's LNG plans. Clark has said B.C. should sell natural gas in China and Japan because natural gas is cleaner than China's coal and safer than Japan's nuclear power. Earlier this month Clark called B.C. proposed liquefied natural-gas plants worldwide pollution-fighting machines, despite concerns by climate scientists and environmental groups that they will belch millions of tonnes of harmful greenhouse gas emissions into the sky. The B.C. government has touted its plans to build LNG refineries and produce the world's cleanest natural gas, but scientist David Suzuki questions the government's commitment to its greenhouse gas targets. (CBC) "We are doing the world a favour," she said. But Suzuki disputes Clark's take on LNG and its purported benefits.
“This is just a rationalization on our part," says Suzuki. "Our fracked gas is not a simple transition fuel. You have to add the amount of water it takes to get that stuff out of the ground – massive amounts of water laced with toxic chemicals being pumped under ground. Then, in order to compress that gas, we have to use an enormous amount of energy to make it into a liquid. That all produces carbon in the atmosphere.” Suzuki says efforts to dramatically expand the LNG industry in B.C. ignore targets on climate change, and he has a pointed message for the premier.
'How long can you go without spending a dollar?''And then how long can you go without taking a breath?'- David Suzuki "Be serious about where we're heading and take the commitment made at Copenhagen, by Canada and the other countries, to set our target at two degrees, and then calculate what that means we can dig out of the ground and use. We're not doing that."
“The economy can’t trump the environment," Suzuki adds. "I keep telling people: How long can you go without spending a dollar? And then how long can you go without taking a breath?”
Pressure for quick LNG approvals may trigger backlash January 6, 2014 Premier Christy Clark has made it clear she wants government to proceed quickly with liquefied natural gas development in British Columbia. But how fast is too fast? That question is being raised in the wake of a decision to notify the public over the holiday period about a B.C. application concerning the environmental assessment of a proposed Woodfibre Natural Gas Ltd. plant near Squamish.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems The Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency issued a press release on Tuesday, Dec. 17, informing the public that the B.C. government had applied to substitute the provincial environmentalassessment process for the federal one. The federal government gave the public until Monday, Jan. 6, to comment. Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Year’s Day all fell during the public comment period. Therefore, people worried about the building of a $1.6-billion LNG loading facility in Howe Sound had 10 working days to articulate and file their concerns about the proposed process change. Of course, many people were busy with holiday festivities during that time, never saw the press release, and until now had no idea that they have just one day left to comment on the proposal that B.C. handle the environmental assessment. With Ms. Clark hanging the credibility of her government on LNG development, there will be those who doubt the objectivity of the B.C. environmental-assessment process when it comes to this industry. Vel Anderson, a member of the Elphinstone Electors Association, a citizens group in Gibsons on the Sunshine Coast, is one of those. “I really believe it’s beneficial to have both [levels of government involved],” Ms. Anderson said. “[The federal assessment] will cover an extensive amount of concerns … whereas possibly the provincial process isn’t as stringent.” Ms. Anderson said she believes people who live in Vancouver, West Vancouver, Gibsons, Lions Bay, Bowen Island and Squamish know little about the LNG project. The project would see 40 LNG tankers a year plying the waters of Howe Sound. “It’s frightening what has happened,” she said. “Here on this coast we received no information. … There’s been nothing in our two local daily newspapers. “There’s been nothing about the facility that’s going to go in at Woodfibre and yet we will be directly affected throughout this whole process.” In an e-mail she sent to the federal government on Friday, Ms. Anderson asked that the public deadline be extended until after an open house has been held on the Sunshine Coast. In an e-mail she sent to the federal government on Friday, Ms. Anderson asked that the public deadline be extended until after an open house has been held on the Sunshine Coast. “Thousands of people around the Coastal area of Howe Sound will be directly affected, and deserve to be informed,” she wrote.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems “Having this public comment period slated for over the holiday season, one wonders what’s going on,” she added in an interview. “It doesn’t look like we’re really invited to comment.” Ms. Anderson is also concerned about a $360-million, 52-kilometre pipeline that FortisBC Energy (Vancouver Island) Inc. proposes to build from Coquitlam to the Woodfibre LNG plant, just seven kilometres southwest of Squamish. But public comment on that project, which is being environmentally assessed by the province, closed Dec. 16. If you blinked, you may have missed it. When Ms. Anderson wrote to B.C.’s Environmental Assessment Office to register her concerns about the pipeline, she was told she was too late to comment. Her e-mail was sent five minutes before midnight, Dec. 16. The Woodfibre LNG plant is proposed for an old industrial site that has sat empty since 2006, after being used for nearly a century by pulp mills. Howe Sound is going through a period of remarkable ecological recovery in recent years, and there are understandable concerns about renewed industrial activity. But the company proposes to clean up the old site and do habitat improvement on a nearby salmon stream. Company consultations with First Nations are well under way and, so far at least, the Squamish Nation seems supportive. The associated pipeline would follow an existing pipeline route, creating minimal environmental impact. So the project, on many fronts, looks like it could easily win support. Instead, the government has created a sense of unease by appearing to rush the process of public consultation.
Major LNG contract awarded January 13, 2014 VICTORIA - A major LNG project proposal has reached another milestone today with Chevron/Apache awarding the consortium of JGC/Fluor with a contract to lead all engineering, procurement and construction services for the proposed Kitimat LNG plant site at Bish Cove near Kitimat. "Today's news is another strong sign of LNG projects advancing in B.C. - which means another step towards realizing an unprecedented opportunity to create jobs and stronger communities throughout British Columbia," said Premier Christy Clark. "There are already 400 people supporting their families by working on the proposed Kitimat LNG facility site - one that has the potential to benefit all British Columbians." The contract awarded by Chevron/Apache will see JGC conduct services for the liquefaction process facilities and core infrastructure, with Fluor responsible for utilities and offsite facilities. "Our LNG sector continues to show progress," said Minister of Natural Gas Development, Rich Coleman. "This contract represents jobs and economic activity, demonstrating the importance of continuing our efforts to develop B.C.'s LNG industry." The proposed Kitimat LNG Project is a 50:50 joint venture between Chevron Canada Limited and Apache Canada Limited and is still subject to a Final Investment Decision (FID).
Kitimat LNG is one of the provinces most advanced LNG proposals with a 20-year export licence approved by Canada's National Energy Board and an environmental assessment by the Government of British Columbia. If five LNG facilities move forward, the cumulative gross domestic product benefit to British Columbia could total $1 trillion by 2046. LNG export operations in B.C. could create over 100,000 new jobs in British Columbia and new revenues for government to support a debt-free future.
BC LNG bigger than Tar Sands? Export licences face Cabinet review December 19, 2013 On Monday, the same day the news broke that Kinder Morgan has finally filed its Vancouver pipeline expansion proposal, Natural Resources Minister Joe Oliver also chose to announce thatfour massive liquefied natural gas (LNG) export licenses recommended by the National Energy Board (NEB) will go to Cabinet for review and final decision. This is in the same week we expect to hear the NEB approve the Enbridge Heavy Oil pipeline proposal with “conditions” that reflect the social license posturing of the BC Liberal Government and, once again, much media debate will ensue.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems However, it is important that we do not let this overshadow the NEB’s approval of four more LNG export licenses, reaching 7 total approved licenses, involving a mind-boggling 109.18 million tonnes per annum (mtpa.) of natural gas. That’s a staggering total gross volume of 2905.5 million tonnes over 25 years, requiring a massive increase in hydraulic fracturing in BC to feed these LNG plants and tankers. Details for the three largest are as follows, with the much smaller Woodfibre application linked to in the complete table below, which includes all 11 export applications, four of which are pending approval and thus not included in the above totals. Pacific NorthWest LNG – Proponents are Petronas, Progress Energy Canada Ltd. and Japan Petroleum Exploration Co. Located in Prince Rupert. Submitted an application to the NEB on July 5, 2013, to export 19.68 million tonnes of LNG annually for 25 years. Prince Rupert LNG – Proponent is BG Group plc. Submitted an application to the NEB in June 2013, to export 21.6 million tonnes of LNG annually for 25 years. WCC LNG Ltd. project – Proponents are Imperial Oil Resources Limited and ExxonMobil Canada Ltd. Will be located in the vicinity of Kitimat or Prince Rupert. Submitted an application to the NEB in June 2013, to export 30 million tonnes of LNG annually for 25 years. Complete list of 11 Export Licenses currently before the NEB Application Status
KM LNG Operating General Partnership
Application [Filing A27596]Reasons for Decision[Filing A33553]
BC LNG Export Cooperative LLC
Application [Folder 704633]Reasons for Decision[Filing A39041]
LNG Canada Development Inc.
Application [Folder 834774]Reasons for Decision[Filing A50334]
Pacific NorthWest LNG Ltd.
Application [Filing A53130]Letter Decision[Filing A55995]
Application [Filing A53032]Letter Decision[Filing A55993]
Prince Rupert LNG Exports Limited
Application [Filing A53011]Letter Decision[Filing A55992]
Woodfibre LNG Export Pte. Ltd.
Application [Filing A53055]Letter Decision[Filing A55997]
Jordan Cove LNG L.P.
Application [Filing A53974]
Triton LNG Limited Partnership
Application [Filing A54964]
Pieridae Energy Ltd.
Application [Filing A55130]
Aurora Liquefied Natural Gas Ltd.
Application [Filing A55578]
Taken in total and converted to the “oil equivalent”, these LNG licences and applications dwarf current Tar Sands production. At the low figure of 80 mtpa, BC Premier Christy Clark has boasted these license applications are the oil equivalent of 1,960,000 barrels per day, every day, for as long as 25 years. The 80 mpta that Christy Clark admits to is only about 3/4 of the actual NEB-approved volume of 109.19 mtpa. That would be the oil equivalent of 2,674,910 million barrels a day, every day for up to 25 years, of APPROVED volumes – remember, 4 more licenses are awaiting for approval, totalling an additional 49.3 mtpa. Some have estimated that to supply the volumes approved in these licenses would require upwards of 50 thousand fracked natural gas wells. For perspective see this image of a few hundred gas well pads in Texas. BC LNG plans: Gas equivalent of 4 million barrels of oil/day Again, the 101.19 mtpa approved total does not count the 49.3 mtpa awaiting for approval, bringing the grand total to 158.49 mtpa or the oil equivalent of 3,883,005 barrels per day. One of those proposals is Sinopec’s Aurora application, which was just received and is the second largest behind WCC’s approved license. The license volumes in these applications, if approved, would launch BC to the forefront of the world’s LNG export market, surpassing the current world leader Qatar. Window of opportunity for public input As a result of recent changes, driven by the proposed Enbridge pipeline, the Harper Cabinet will be making the final decision on these export applications.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems At the same time, the Harper Government is negotiating the final details of unprecedented trade agreements in terms of their magnitude, scope and impact on BC’s emerging LNG industry. Those include the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) and the Foreign Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement with China (FIPPA). These agreements will dictate the terms of BC’s emerging LNG industry for generations – which is why this is a pivotal time to register your concerns. Take the time and use this contact information below to register your concerns with Natural Resources Canada about BC LNG export volumes, trade agreements and the impact on our economy and environment. Telephone: 613-995-0947 Email: email@example.com If you could impact the unbridled exploitation of the Tar Sands BEFORE they were “locked in” and well underway, would you? If so, now is your chance to act and influence the BC “Tar Sands”, as defined by Christy Clark’s vision.
Steve Lipsky’s water issues are at the centre of a regulatory controversy involving fracking in Texas
General Finds EPA Justified in Intervening to Protect Drinking Water from Fracking December 24, 2013
Today the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Inspector General found EPA Region 6 was justified in legally intervening to protect Parker County, TX residents’ drinking water from drilling impacts. At Sen. Inhofe’s (R-OK) request, the Inspector General investigated to determine if Region 6’s intervention against Range Resources was due to political influence by the Obama administration.
“The EPA’s internal watchdog has confirmed that the EPA was justified in stepping in to protect residents who were and still are in imminent danger,” said Sharon Wilson, Gulf regional organizer of Earthworks. “Now we need an investigation as to whether political corruption caused EPA to withdraw that protection.” The EPA invoked its power to protect drinking water in 2010, prompting Oklahoma Sen. Inhofe to request the Inspector General’s investigation in 2011. The EPA withdrew its legal complaint against Range Resources in 2012 despite having a report from an independent scientist showing that a gas well drilled by Range likely polluted nearby water supplies. The EPA’s withdrawal from Parker County appears to be part of a larger pattern, in which the Obama administration has blocked or abandoned investigations of whether drilling or hydraulic fracturing polluted drinking water. In addition to the case in Parker County, reports in major news outlets indicate that the Obama administration caused the EPA to abandon studies of potential drilling or fracking pollution in Pavillion, WY and Dimock, PA despite evidence of drilling-related harm. “The Obama administration appears to be more concerned about protecting corporate interests, not the public interest,” said Steve Lipsky, a Weatherford, TX homeowner who sued Range Resources after the EPA named the company the party responsible for contaminating his drinking water well. “President Obama promised that hydraulic fracturing would occur safely. With this IG report, it now seems clear that he is determined to squash any evidence to the contrary.” Just prior to the release of the Inspector General report, the Texas Railroad Commission (regulator of oil and gas, not railroads) opened an investigation into the case. The EPA intervened in 2010 to protect area drinking water only after the commission refused to do so. The Commission’s new investigation prevents the EPA from legally intervening now as it did in 2010. “Regulators shouldn’t have to be pressured into doing their job to protect people like me from drilling impacts,” said Shelly Perdue, a Parker County resident with drilling-polluted drinking water. “If what has happened to me is happening to others, I completely understand why communities across the country are voting to ban fracking and drilling.” “Releasing this report at noon on Christmas Eve shows the Obama administration is obviously embarrassed by its findings,” said Earthworks energy program director Bruce Baizel. “As they should be. The withdrawal of Obama’s EPA is an abject failure of its mission to protect Americans’ health and environment.”
Solar Tunnel: Antwerp, Belgium High-efficiency solar panels — 16,000 of them, with a rating of 245W each — were turned on, on the roof of a high-speed rail tunnel in Antwerp, Belgium (all of which were supplied by JinkoSolar). The 3.6-kilometer (2.2-mile) tunnel was built to protect trains from falling trees as they pass through an ancient forest. The installation covers a total surface area of 50,000m² (538,000 ft2). The electricity produced by the installation will be used to power railway infrastructure, such as signals, lighting and the heating of stations. It will also power the trains using the Belgian rail network. The endeavor is estimated to reduce CO2 emissions by 2,400 tons per year.
India Building Solar Canals To Produce Power & Slow Water Loss READ ENTIRE SOLAR LOVE ARTICLE HERE
Massive solar plan for Minnesota wins bid over gas A judge’s ruling notably said the renewable energy proposal would be a better deal for ratepayers. January 2, 2014 Minnesota soon could see at least a sevenfold expansion of solar power. In an unprecedented ruling, a judge reviewing whether Xcel Energy should invest in new natural gas generators vs. large solar power arrays concluded Tuesday that solar is a better deal. If the finding by Administrative Law Judge Eric Lipman is upheld by the state Public Utilities Commission (PUC), Edina-based Geronimo Energy plans to build about 20 large solar power arrays on sites across Xcel’s service area at a cost of $250 million. “It says solar is coming in a big way to the country and to Minnesota,” Geronimo Vice President Betsy Engelking said of the ruling. Geronimo’s Aurora Solar Project would receive no state or utility subsidies, but would qualify for a federal investment tax credit. Engleking said it is the first time in the United States that solar energy without a state subsidy has beaten natural gas in an official, head-to-head price comparison. “The cost of solar has come down much faster than anyone had anticipated,” she said in an interview. “This is one of the reasons solar is going to explode.” The largest of the Geronimo projects would be five times bigger than the state’s largest solar array in Slayton, Minn. Some would cover up to 70 acres of land. The proposed sites are in 17 counties, mostly in central, eastern and southeastern Minnesota. It is the first time the state has used a competitive bidding process for a major power generation project. The commission ordered the trial-like proceeding to force energy companies to compete on price. Xcel, based in Minneapolis, and three other energy companies offered various proposals, mostly generators powered by natural gas. Xcel’s plan included a new gas generator at its Black Dog plant in Burnsville, where the utility intends to retire the remaining coal-burning units. In a 50-page ruling, Lipman said “the greatest value to Minnesota and Xcel’s ratepayers is drawn from selecting Geronimo’s solar energy proposal …”
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems If the Aurora project is built, Xcel likely would purchase the power under a long-term agreement. That could help Xcel toward its requirement to get 1.5 percent of its power from the sun by 2020 under a new state energy law. Xcel also is counting on rooftop solar systems, community-owned arrays and its own large projects to meet that goal. Lipman said that if solar alone can’t supply all of Xcel’s extra power needs in the next few years, the utility could take up an offer to purchase surplus energy from Great River Energy, the state’s secondlargest power company. The judge also said Xcel will have time to consider other generation projects if electrical demand picks up. Xcel said in a statement that it appreciated Lipman’s work, but that it disagreed with some of the findings and would file a written response. Under the PUC’s rules, the competitors and other interests can take exception to the judge’s ruling before the five-member commission takes a vote. Geronimo already does business with Xcel, selling the output of its Prairie Rose Wind Farm in Rock County, in far southwestern Minnesota. Two of four planned wind farms that Xcel will add in the next two years — near Windom, Minn., and near Jamestown, N.D. — are being built by Geronimo. The company has built two smaller wind farms in southeastern Minnesota and is about to construct two more wind farms in Michigan and Nebraska for other utilities.
Other competitors The other competitors considered by the judge were Houston-based Calpine, which proposed a gas turbine in Mankato at its existing power plant there and Chicago-based Invenergy, which proposed gas turbines at Cannon Falls and Hampton. Xcel also proposed two gas units near Hankinson, N.D. “We are reviewing the [judge’s] recommendations, and will evaluate our next steps in the docketed proceeding,” Craig Gordon, Invenergy vice president of sales and marketing, said in an e-mail Tuesday. If the Aurora Project is approved, Geronimo said the solar arrays would be built in 2015 and 2016. Engelking said that Geronimo already has signed deals for land and that it has identified more sites than needed in case some don’t work out. Each of the ground-mounted arrays would be next to an existing substation, avoiding transmissionline costs. She said the company still needs state or local permits. But the company has visited with local governments and has pledged to make payments in lieu of taxes ranging from $50,000 to $110,000 a year. Geronimo, a renewable energy developer, doesn’t intend to own the projects, she said. Its financing partner, Enel Green Power, has the first option to acquire them, she said. But it’s possible Geronimo could make a deal to sell the arrays to Xcel or other energy companies, she said.
“When solar can win over gas in a northern state like Minnesota, you know that the era of fossil fuels is coming to an end. A judge ruled last week that solar was the better deal for the state's major utility, which should result in a 7x expansion of solar in the state. “ http://www.startribune.com/business/238322571.html
Genetically Engineered Atlantic Salmon: aka FrankenSalmon
Facility growing experimental genetically engineered salmon lacks permits November 25, 2013 Genetically engineered salmon, a lab-created cross between two kinds of salmon and an ocean eelpout, could be approved for sale in the United States later this year. However, the approval is based on the fish being grown outside of the US in an experimental facility located in Panama, where it theoretically can't cause direct harm to our ocean ecosystems.
Consumer watchdog groups argue the fish should never have been given a regulatory nod from the FDA because of an increased chance of causing allergic reactions, higher levels of a growth hormone linked to cancer, and the possibility of the fish escaping and outcompeting native, non-altered fish. The salmon, known as the AquAdvantage, was developed by the AquaBounty Company with a goal of increasing the speed at which the fish grows and allowing it to grow year-round instead of only during spring and summer. The Canadian government gave the go-ahead today for commercial production of the engineered salmon eggs, which will be shipped to the Panama facility for hatching. Canada made this decision before new allegations were heard of the Panama facility lacking proper environmental permits.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems According to consumer organization Food & Water Watch, AquaBounty’s experimental production facility of genetically engineered (GE) salmon in Panama is missing multiple legally required permits and inspections, including a wastewater discharge permit, according to an administrative claim filed today in Panama by the environmental group Centro de Incidencia Ambiental de Panama (CIAM). Food & Water Watch, joined by the Center for Food Safety and Friends of the Earth, were part of an international coalition of groups who supported CIAM’s administrative claim by submitting a letter to Panamanian authorities, which raises serious questions regarding AquaBounty’s ability to comply with basic environmental regulations.
“These allegations suggest a dangerous pattern of noncompliance and mismanagement by AquaBounty, raising the likelihood of an environmentally damaging escape of these fish,” said George Kimbrell, senior attorney for Center for Food Safety. This news further undermines the empty assurances that AquaBounty and the Food and Drug Administration have given the public and suggests that Panama’s environmental laws may have also been broken.” The FDA is considering commercial approval of AquaBounty’s GE salmon allegedly based on a scenario in which AquaBounty would produce GE salmon eggs at a facility in Prince Edward Island, Canada, which are then shipped to the facility in Panama to be grown to harvest. Fillets would then be shipped to American consumers. However, significant questions about the viability and legality of this plan continue to emerge. “FDA’s ineffective and inappropriate regulatory regime has reached its logical conclusion, as it appears that AquaBounty is essentially self-regulating in Panama,” according to Wenonah Hauter, executive director of Food & Water Watch. “If and when FDA finally approves GE salmon and new production facilities open up around the world, we expect this scenario to play out again and again.” The CIAM complaint comes on the heels of several other reports of major problems at AquaBounty’s Panamanian facility, including the company reporting “lost” GE salmon, which resulted from the region’s notoriously severe weather. The area around AquaBounty’s facility also experiences routine, destructive flooding.
“Once GE salmon escape, there is no retrieving them,” Dana Perls, food and technology campaigner for Friends of the Earth, stated. “It’s clear that consumers don't want GE salmon, so why are we putting wild salmon and the environment at risk?” The international coalition supporting this effort includes seven groups from around the world, including Panama (Centro de Incidencia Ambiental de Panama), Canada (Canadian Biotechnology Action Network), Europe (Food & Water Europe and GeneWatch), and the United States (Center for Food Safety, Food & Water Watch, and Friends of the Earth).
AquAdvantage® Fish AquaBounty is developing advanced-hybrid salmon, trout, and tilapia designed to grow faster than their conventional siblings. AquAdvantage® Salmon AquAdvantage® Salmon (AAS) include a gene from the Chinook salmon, which provides the fish with the potential to grow to market size in half the time of conventional salmon. In all other respects, AAS are identical to other Atlantic salmon.
AAS are not identical to Atlantic feedlot salmon that are not identical to wild Atlantic salmon Not all AAS will be sterile females AAS will be reared in open pen feedlots once
approved for human consumption by the US Food and Drug Administration Escaped AAS will outcompete wild salmon and trout for food Escaped AAS will breed with wild salmonids.
AAS is an environmentally sustainable alternative to current farmed salmon. AAS will be grown as sterile, all-female populations in land-based facilities with redundant biological and physical containment. As a result, AquAdvantage® Salmon cannot escape or reproduce in the wild and pose no threat to wild salmon populations. AAS raised in land-based facilities reduce the environmental impact on coastal areas, eliminate the threat of disease transfer from farms to wild fish and grow more fish with less feed. Additionally, facilities located near major consumer markets reduce the environmental impact associated with air and ocean freight. AquAdvantage® Salmon is the future of salmon aquaculture.
I have to stop saying “How stupid can you be”
Ron Stead: “I never realized that so much ignorance, arrogance and stupidity could exist in one body, but it does, and that body is in the regulatory agencies of the Canadian Government. There was a time, not too long ago when it was illegal to intentionally pollute our environment, today, our Government seems to encourage it. Fish farms, GMO farming, fracking, self regulating oil and gas exploration companies, tar sands, leaking oil lines, and now scientifically created Frankenfish. When will this insanity end? In this world of madness, I find it amazing that there are people who would chose to not know what it is that they are feeding their children and themselves, that would be willing to chose not to have a choice in their selection of the foods they eat. Do they not realize that the use of GMO products is poised to destroy our natural environment.”
Fish and Wildlife Commission – Grays Harbor Salmon Management Plan
Some of the Public Testimony HERE Summary:
Conservation and recovery of wild salmon Meet wild salmon escapement WDFW staff accountability
Limit access by commercial fleet (4, 3) Comprehensive economic analysis Effective co-management Upriver opportunities Commercial license buybacks Reduce out of basin (Alaska, Canada) impact (48%)
Fish Committee Recommended Amendments to Draft Management Plan HERE
Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) — The biggest trade deal in the world Quick Facts on TTIP
TTIP is a trade and investment agreement under negotiation between the EU and the US. TTIP is designed to drive growth and create jobs. Independent research shows that TTIP could boost:
the EU's economy by €120 billion; the US economy by €90 billion; the rest of the world by €100 billion
Talks started in July 2013.
What is TTIP? The Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) is a trade agreement that is presently being negotiated between the European Union and the United States. It aims at removing trade barriers in a wide range of economic sectors to make it easier to buy and sell goods and services between the EU and the US. On top of cutting tariffs across all sectors, the EU and the US want to tackle barriers behind the customs border – such as differences in technical regulations, standards and approval procedures. These often cost unnecessary time and money for companies who want to sell their products on both markets. For example, when a car is approved as safe in the EU, it has to undergo a new approval procedure in the US even though the safety standards are similar. The TTIP negotiations will also look at opening both markets for services, investment, and public procurement. They could also shape global rules on trade. How Europe can benefit from TTIP Because the EU-US trade relationship is already the biggest in the world – every day we trade goods and services worth €2 billion, every trade barrier we remove could result in significant economic gains. An independent report suggests that an ambitious agreement could result in millions of euros of savings to companies and create hundreds of thousands of jobs.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems It's expected that every year an average European household would gain €545, as our economy would be boosted by 0.5% of GDP, or €120 billion annually, once fully implemented. The extra economic growth will benefit everyone; boosting trade is a good way of boosting our economies by creating increased demand and supply without having to increase public spending or borrowing. Latest round of negotiations EU and US negotiators held a third round of talks on a planned Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) in Washington D.C. between 16 and 20 December 2013. View the final press conference
from Friday 20 December.
More information and key documents on TTIP
TTIP in a nutshell
What is TTIP? How Europe can benefit from TTIP Latest round of negotiations Key documents Questions and answers
“Today (June 17, 2013) is a special day for relations between the European Union and the United States. We are ready to start the negotiations of a comprehensive Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership agreement (TTIP),” said President Barroso in his statement at the joint EU – US press conference at the margins of the G8 summit. Together with European Council President Van Rompuy, President of the United States Obama and UK Prime minister Cameron, European Commission President Barroso stressed the importance of the TTIP. “Our joint endeavor is about bringing growth and jobs to both sides of the Atlantic by boosting trade and investment,” said the President, adding that the TTIP is “also a powerful demonstration of our determination to shape a free, open and rules-based world.”
Trans Pacific Partnership The secrecy surrounding the trade deal has raised eyebrows across the globe. Activists and lawmakers alike have expressed concern over the lack of transparency in what is being advertised as a simple trade deal to bring jobs to nations that agree to the principals of the TPP. Activists hold a very different opinion of the trade deal, which has only been available for public scrutiny through leaks hosted on the Wikileaks website or other whistleblower pages. It should be noted that none of the disclosures so far have anything to do with job creation.
"I think it's really important for everyone to realize that this is a corporate bill, benefiting corporations while harming individuals -- There is no benefit in it for us. It will affect each and every one of us personally."
TPP - Wikileaks has released another bombshell Trans Pacific Partnership: “NAFTA on Steroids” Watch video HERE November 14, 2013
Mike Papantonio, Ring of Fire Radio joins Thom Hartmann. Wikileaks has released another bombshell - this time publishing a portion of text from the secretly negotiated Trans Pacific Partnership. Now that the text is out in the open - will lawmakers in Washington finally realize how devastating the TPP is to the American economy?
Letter to Conservatives about the Canada-China Foreign Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement (FIPA)
We know that China’s companies are turning up the pressure to ratify the Canada China Foreign Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement (FIPA), and we’re hoping that you will push back at your convention this weekend. The Canada-China FIPA is reckless. FIPA would let China’s companies sue Canada for unlimited damages if our governments make decisions that put Canada’s interests first. Canada has signed a lot of FIPA’s in recent years — but only with small countries where we were expecting that most of the investment would be going out, not in.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems With China, we’re talking about the soon-to-be-biggest-economy in the world. China’s state owned companies have countless billions to buy out Canadian resource companies for their own national interest. Why make ourselves vulnerable to that kind of risk? The Canada-China secretive.
These lawsuits would be decided by unaccountable arbitrators in secret tribunals outside of Canada’s court system. Both the Canadian and Chinese governments can keep the public in the dark about the facts and arguments of cases that may undermine our democracy and economy. There’s only one guarantee: once the case is settled, we will find out how many millions (or billions) of taxpayer dollars we’ll have to hand over to foreign corporations. Many Canadians have never heard of this FIPA because there’s been almost no public debate and no serious study of the risk. In our home life, we’d never agree to having someone sign a deal like this on our behalf without some serious study and debate. The Canada-China FIPA is binding. Our experience with NAFTA has shown us that bigger countries have the advantage in this unfair system. Canada has lost every case brought against us by a US company, costing us millions of taxpayer dollars. India and Australia are both moving away from investor state arbitration because they’re tired of being sued by foreign companies. They are saying “yes” to trade and “no” to secretive lawsuits. So what if this FIPA turns out to be a disaster? We can just get out of it, right? No, we can’t. Unlike NAFTA, which we can leave with six months notice, this FIPA would lock us in for 31 years. We’re talking about an investor protection deal with the likely-to-be-super-power of the 21st century. What’s the rush? Let’s say yes to trade, and no to secretive lawsuits. Let’s take our time to understand the risks. Let’s start over and come to an agreement that doesn’t sacrifice our democratic control or put our economy at risk. Thanks for reading this. Sincerely, Jamie Biggar, on behalf of the Leadnow.ca team
N.L.’s destroyed salmon tab: $33M Critics slam federal payouts for salmon anemia compensation The federal government has paid more than $33 million in compensation for five separate outbreaks of infectious salmon anemia in Newfoundland and Labrador, according to documents obtained by The Telegram. In response to an inquiry in August from St. Barbe Liberal MHA Jim Bennett, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency — which had previously said it wouldn’t disclose compensation amounts paid to producers ordered to destroy salmon infected with the disease — provided the amounts paid to two New Brunswick companies in each of the outbreaks, dating back to July 2012. In all, $33.1 million has been paid to Gray Aqua for three outbreaks — in Butter Cove, Goblin Bay and Pass My Can Island — and Kelly Cove, a division of Cooke Aquaculture, for two outbreaks — in Pot Harbour and Manuel’s Arm. The amount paid per fish varies by the outbreak, as compensation is intended to reflect market value for what the company would have received for healthy stock, to a maximum of $30 per fish. Bennett, speaking to The Telegram, said the provincial aquaculture industry isn’t sustainable if it has to depend on compensation to be viable. “If the feds realize how much they’re paying in compensation and decide to pull the plug on this type of reimbursement, then the industry simply couldn’t survive,” said the Liberals’ fisheries critic, adding the compensation makes aquaculture farming a no-lose prospect for producers. “They go into a pristine environment — our waters — they take no precaution measures like closed containment, which would eliminate this completely.” The provincial industry’s largely open-pen system results in farmed salmon catching diseases from wild stock — or infecting the wild stock, said Bennett. “This can only be resolved by going to closed containment, either on land or using tanks in the ocean. Either technology would work. It is more expensive, but it’s nowhere near as expensive as having to pay this compensation for diseased fish.” The economic effects of diseased fish aren’t felt just by the producer, noted Bennett — destroyed fish don’t benefit the processing and grocery industries either, he said.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems Provincial Fisheries and Aquaculture Minister Keith Hutchings said there have been challenges to the aquaculture industry in the province, but contends overall it’s doing well. “We recognize some challenges. We’ve invested heavily in our biosecurity,” he said. “We’ve gone through a consultative process now with industry which has been very receptive, developed a whole lot of information and feedback — we’ll look at that in terms of growing into our next five years and what we need to do to continue to improve.” As for the amount of compensation paid, Hutchings said reimbursement has to be enough of a motivation for producers to report salmon outbreaks so the damage can be minimized and preventive measures taken. “If a producer — whether producing cattle, sheep, vegetables or farmed salmon — the incentive now, if they see an irregularity in their product they’re growing, is to report that, and that the disease is then recognized, and the process starts to eradicate it,” said Hutchings. If the reimbursement wasn’t there, producers would have less incentive to report disease, he said. That’s not good enough, says Bill Taylor. “Two wrongs don’t make a right,” said the president of the Atlantic Salmon Federation, a New Brunswick-based group that is heavily critical of salmon-farming methods and regulation. That producers might cover up outbreaks if they’re not compensated well enough isn’t a point in the industry’s favour, he said. “If they would be inclined to, then that tells me that there needs to be better checks and measures, more effective control and management and monitoring by both the provincial government in Newfoundland and the federal government.” The provincial industry is unsustainable if it requires that much compensation for producers to keep going, said Taylor. “We certainly understand that some things happen to farmers, salmon farmers included, that are beyond their control, and there’s insurance and certain avenues for compensation available for failures and things of that nature,” said Taylor. The problem with Newfoundland’s industry, he said, is its largely open-pen system. “There are going to be continual issues like infectious salmon anemia, diseases and sea lice outbreaks, and pollution at the bottom of the sea floor that affect other species.” The federation has warned the provincial and federal governments about potential problems with the industry. “We take absolutely no satisfaction in saying ‘told you so,’” said Taylor. “That Canadian, Newfoundland taxpayers have to foot the bill to the tune of in excess of $30 million is an absolute disgrace.”
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems Newfoundland producers have “a sweet deal,” said Taylor. “They’re using a public resource, which is our marine environment, which you and I own just as much as they own. They are paying next to nothing for the leases to put their sites there, and they are being paid handsomely in compensation for their poor practices. So when you have a disease outbreak, it’s very little skin off their nose, because they’re compensated for poor practices.” Miranda Pryor, executive director of the Newfoundland Aquaculture Industry Association, called the compensation a security to keep the industry going. “It’s no different, really, from all food-producing sectors, from the agricultural sector,” she said. “If this were to happen with chicken or beef, or say it’s an off-year for any crop production, like wheat and things like that — we’ve certainly known of instances over the years where unfortunately something does happen and the federal or provincial government has stepped in to help ensure an industry can continue.” Pryor said the cost of transferring all provincial aquaculture production to land pens would be considerable, but that’s not the only factor, she said; raising salmon in a natural environment reduces risk factors for the farmed salmon, and she disputes the claim that contained pens would eliminate disease. “It’s not their natural environment. Production levels have to be much higher so you have much more fish in a much more contained area,” she said. “There’s a lot of considerations.” Pryor said she understands why the public would be concerned about compensation. “For the most part, the companies may still break even, but there’s no benefit. The financial benefit that they would have made if the product could have been grown to market size would have been considerably more.” In 2013, said Pryor, the industry produced about $180 million in sales. “Obviously, yes, we share the concern, but we feel we have a long future ahead.” A request for an interview with a Canadian Food Inspection Agency official was declined. A spokeswoman for the agency provided a written response on how compensation is determined. “Compensation is determined on a case-by-case basis, following an assessment of the particular situation,” states the response. “To determine the actual amount of compensation, an assessment team would visit the premises. The assessment team would consist of CFIA veterinarians and may also include industry representatives and/or economists.” Calls requesting interviews with Tim Gray of Gray Aqua and Glen Cooke of Cooke Aquaculture were not returned.
How the Harper Government Committed a Knowledge Massacre January 3, 2014 Scientists are calling it "libricide." Seven of the nine world-famous Department of Fisheries and Oceans [DFO] libraries were closed by autumn 2013, ostensibly to digitize the materials and reduce costs. But sources told the independent Tyee in December that a fraction of the 600,000-volume collection had been digitized. And, a secret federal document notes that a paltry $443,000 a year will be saved. The massacre was done quickly, with no record keeping and no attempt to preserve the material in universities. Scientists said precious collections were consigned to dumpsters, were burned or went to landfills. Probably the most famous facility to get the axe is the library of the venerable St. Andrews Biological Station in St. Andrews, New Brunswick, which environmental scientist Rachel Carson used extensively to research her seminal book on toxins, Silent Spring. The government just spent millions modernizing the facility.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems Also closed were the Freshwater Institute library in Winnipeg and the Northwest Atlantic Fisheries Centre in St. John's, Newfoundland, both world-class collections. Hundreds of years of carefully compiled research into aquatic systems, fish stocks and fisheries from the 1800s and early 1900s went into the bin or up in smoke. Irreplaceable documents like the 50 volumes produced by the H.M.S. Challenger expedition of the late 1800s that discovered thousands of new sea creatures, are now moldering in landfills. Renowned Dalhousie University biologist Jeff Hutchings calls the closures "an assault on civil society." "It is always unnerving from a research and scientist perspective to watch a government undermine basic research. Losing libraries is not a neutral act," Hutchings says. He blames political convictions for the knowledge massacre. "It must be about ideology. Nothing else fits," said Hutchings. "What that ideology is, is not clear.
Alexandra Morton: “With the science destroyed, trashed, government can freely repeat - "There is no evidence," anytime someone stands to protect any part of this country from impact by industry. In the early days of my fight to protect BC from salmon farming, this line was used to ignore the concerns raised by my neighbours as the industry began squashing the life out of our community. So I began publishing the evidence in scientific journals. This still did not help, because they are not playing by their own rules, but my point is telling the public "there is no evidence" is a long-used tactic, Harper has now made it a permanent feature of any attempt to protect life in Canada.”
Claudette Bethune: For business as usual when damaging the environment and endangering consumers, it's deny, delay, and discount. They have found a way to get the deny and delay tactic against the truth about salmon farming with this horrific move.
Does it reflect that part of the Harper government that doesn't think government should be involved in the very things that affect our lives? Or is it that the role of government is not to collect books or fund science?" Hutchings said the closures fit into a larger pattern of "fear and insecurity" within the Harper government, "about how to deal with science and knowledge."
Many scientists have compared the war on environmental science to the rise of fascism in 1930s Europe. Hutchings muses, "you look at the rise of certain political parties in the 1930s and have to ask how could that happen and how did they adopt such extreme ideologies so quickly, and how could that happen in a democracy today?"
Secret Memo Casts Doubt on Feds' Claims for Science Library Closures Goal stated is 'culling' research, not preserving and sharing through digitization December 30, 2013 A federal document marked "secret" obtained by Postmedia News indicates the closure or destruction of more than half a dozen world famous science libraries has little if anything to do with digitizing books as claimed by the Harper government. In fact, the document, a compendium of cuts to the Department of Fisheries and Oceans that can be read in its entirety at the bottom of this story, mentions only the "culling of materials" as the "main activities" involved as the science libraries are reduced from nine to two. Specifically, it details "culling materials in the closed libraries or shipping them to the two locations and culling materials in the two locations to make room for collections from closed libraries." In contrast, a government website says the closures are all about digitizing the books and providing greater access to Canadians -- a claim federal and retired scientists interviewed by The Tyee say is not true. An agency spokesperson did not answer a series of questions posed by The Tyee. Instead he referred The Tyee to the government website.
Prime Minister Stephen Harper: his government's zeal to reduce deficit is destroying vital research on fish and water systems, say scientists.
As reported by The Tyee earlier this month and again here, scientists are sounding alarms about libraries dismantled by the government, including the historic St. Andrews Biological Station (SABS) in St. Andrews, New Brunswick, where famed environmental scientist Rachel Carson did some of her research for her groundbreaking book on toxins, Silent Spring. Also shut down are the famous
Legacy â€“ February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 â€“ Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems Freshwater Institute library in Winnipeg and one of the world's finest ocean collections at the Northwest Atlantic Fisheries Centre in St. John's, Newfoundland. Scientists who use the libraries say priceless information -- essential for the legal and political security of Canada's waterways as well as the defence of the longest coastline in the world -- was thrown into dustbins, burned or scavenged by private consultants. In Winnipeg, a consultant's group operating for Manitoba Hydro backed up a truck to collect materials from the dismantled library. An undetermined percentage of books were relocated to facilities in Sidney or Halifax. The federal government spokesperson would not tell The Tyee what percentage or how decisions about what to keep and what to lose were made. A DFO scientist anonymously told The Tyee, "The cuts were carried out in great haste apparently in order to meet some unknown agenda. No records have been provided with regard to what material has been dumped or the value of this public property. No formal attempt was made to transfer material to libraries of existing academic institutions." 'Heartbreaking' Scientists have variously condemned the dismantling of the one of the world's finest aquatic libraries as a natural tragedy, a series of criminal acts and information destruction unworthy of a democracy. "The fact that many materials were thrown away or given away is heartbreaking to those of us who are dedicated to this field of research (marine science and fisheries) and the history of science in Canada," says Peter Wells, a prominent marine environmental scientist at Dalhousie University. Wells, who is also an aquatic toxicologist, spent a career working as a public servant for Environment Canada (1974-2006) on a variety of environmental issues. "That we as a society are condoning information destruction and core library closures in Canada is unbelievable, and in my view, undemocratic and probably criminal," adds the scientist. Library closures took place in such a chaotic fashion that individuals who had books out on loan from Winnipeg's Freshwater Institute library, for instance, were not even contacted or asked to return the books. "I can confirm the Freshwater Institute library did not bother to retrieve any of the books I had out on loan -- I was never contacted to return them," emailed one prominent scientist, who asked to remain unnamed in this article for fear of federal government reprisals. "Also, no attempt was made to ask what I wanted done with the books I had donated to the library, which I think should be normal library protocol. I think this behaviour indicates either the 'consolidation' effort was extremely short on staff, or that DFO didn't really care."
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems Small savings The federal document, part of the Deficit Reduction Action Plan (DRAP), confirms another argument made by scientists critical of the cuts: the savings they deliver will be tiny compared to the value of the materials lost. In fact the closure of libraries containing vital material nearly 100 years old on the state of Canada's fisheries, freshwater ecosystems and oceans will save taxpayers just $443,000 a year, according to the document. In one case the government closed the climate-controlled library at the St. Andrews Biological Station in New Brunswick just after the government spent millions modernizing the famous facility. The collections contained millions of dollars worth of irreplaceable books, reports, diaries and statistics. Mike De Souza, the enterprising national political reporter covering energy and environment for Postmedia News, obtained the document under the Access to Information Act. 26 'tracks' for spending cuts The document lists 26 "tracks" or changes within the Department of Fisheries being carried out to help reduce Canada's federal budget deficit. Very few of those tracks' descriptions make claims for bolstering or improving marine safety, contaminant research, protection of fish habitat or the efficacy of the Coast Guard. Instead, the document details numerous actions which create reductions or total elimination of these environmental services. They include:
The shrinkage of 20 Marine Communications and Traffic Service centres down to 11; The reduction of Inshore Rescue Boats; The reduction of Marine Search and Rescue services; The defunding of species at risk recovery oriented programs in the Maritimes; The closure of 21 Conservation and Protection offices, as "part of a broader departmental footprint reduction plan." Comox, Pender Harbour, Quesnel, Hazelton and Clearwater all lost offices; The closure of the Kitsilano Lifeboat Station in Vancouver; Closure of the Experimental Lakes Area; The killing of all biological effects contaminant research within the department.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems The document explains that ending the capacity to do public research on freshwater and ocean pollutants such as bitumen spills "involves eliminating the in-house research program aimed at biological effects of contaminants, pesticide and oil and gas, and establishing a small advisory group to oversee the outsourcing of priority research needs." 'High profile' controversies noted The document reflects the Harper government's interest in gauging media and citizen awareness of its wide-ranging program of cutting environmental protections, changing related laws and eliminating federal jobs in various ridings. Among the "tracks" labeled "high profile" for the controversies they have generated are:
"Consolidation of Marine Communications and Traffic Services Functions" which shuts down nine of 20 marine distress call monitoring stations. "Conservation and Protection Office Closures" -- 21 closures in all, including five in B.C. "Closure of Kitsilano Lifeboat Station in Vancouver," about which the document notes "since the announcement of the closure there has been intense local media and public reaction against the decision (concerns regarding boater/swimmer safety)." "Closure of the Experimental Lakes Research Facility" -- "This track has been the subject of intense media attention," notes the document. "Outsourcing Research Capability of Contaminant Research" -- "Since the announcement, media focus has been on the capacity of the Department and its scientists to provide adequate and timely advice to the government on the potential effects of accidental spills of contaminants, especially oil, gas and diluted bitumen into the environment." "Prioritization and Restructuring Habitat Management and Associated Ecosystems Management Activities" -- "This track has been the focus of much media attention -- concerns with this Government's commitment to protecting habitat areas."
Track number six, "Rationalization of Library Services," was not given the label of "High Profile." Related Tyee articles: What's Driving Chaotic Dismantling of Canada's Science Libraries?
Scientists reject Harper gov't claims vital material is being saved digitally.
Dismantling of Fishery Library 'Like a Book Burning,' Say Scientists
Harper government shuts down 'world class' collection on freshwater science and protection.
Enviro Law Clinic asks for investigation of government 'muzzling' of scientists
Alexandra Morton: “Thank you CBC and these brave scientists. Scientists are encouraged to work quietly simply produce the science, leave the implementation to others, so this is a very big step and for CBC too!”
Silence of the Labs In the past few years, the federal government has cut funding to hundreds of renowned research institutes and programs. Ottawa has dismissed more than 2,000 federal scientists and researchers and has drastically cut or ended programs that monitored smoke stack emissions, food inspections, oil spills, water quality and climate change. Now some scientists have become unlikely radicals, denouncing what they call is a politically-driven war on knowledge. In Silence of the Labs, Linden MacIntyre tells the story of scientists - and what is at stake for Canadians - from Nova Scotia to the B.C. Pacific Coast to the far Arctic Circle.
U.S. environmental group puts Canadian fisheries on its target list January 7, 2014 WASHINGTON – A prominent U.S. environmental group is targeting seafood imports from countries that don’t follow American fishing standards — and Canada is on its hit list. The criticism is in a report released Tuesday by the Natural Resources Defence Council, which is lobbying the U.S. administration to start enforcing a domestic law that bans imports from countries that fail to apply American sea-mammal protection rules. The report comes as the U.S. weighs regulatory changes that could result in more stringent enforcement of an existing law governing U.S. fisheries imports. Since Canada is the second-largest fish exporter to the U.S. after China, with $2.5 billion worth shipped per year, any regulatory revamp could be felt across the border. The document says 650,000 sea mammals are killed each year, while nearly all fish imported into the U.S. come from countries — including Canada — that fail to provide similar protections or don’t meet American reporting guidelines. The news release accompanying the report proclaimed a “marine mammal massacre,” listing about a dozen foreign culprits in the unintentional maiming or killing of sea animals that get caught in fishing equipment — known as bycatch. In Canada’s case, the report says whales and harbour porpoises are dying because fisheries on the East Coast, notably those that produce crab and lobster, don’t use the same catching techniques. The U.S. fishing industry was on hand at Tuesday’s news conference, where Acy Cooper, a Louisiana shrimp fisherman, described how he spent $2,000 for nets that complied with the U.S. law and had been forced to surrender eight to 10 per cent of his catch to avoid harming sea mammals. Foreign fishers should be playing by the same, costlier rules, said Cooper, who is also vice-president of the Louisiana Shrimpers Association. “They can catch them for a lot cheaper, put ‘em on our market, and drive our prices down,” Cooper said. “That makes us go down, and our communities suffer because our prices are not up.”
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems If the rest of the world isn’t required to meet similar requirements, “then we’re going to lose this industry,” he added. Cooper said his fellow fishers can be fined up to $10,000 for a first offence if their nets miss the allowed range by an angle of five degrees or more. They can lose their boats and be fined up to $50,000 for a second offence. In an email Tuesday, the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration said it is indeed in the process of revising rules so that they might more stringently apply domestic regulations. The agency would not speculate on a time frame, but Zak Smith, a lawyer for the council and coauthor of the report, expressed hope that new regulations might be imminent. “We do know, just from talking to people, that they’re in the works, that they’re circulating within the government, and that we would hope for something in the first half of this year,” Smith said. Any new regulations should force importers to prove, like U.S. companies are already required to do, that protective measures are being used and that they’re being monitored for compliance with regulations, he added. The report said the volume of mammal bycatch fell about 30 per cent — to 4,356 in 2006 — after the U.S. adopted domestic guidelines in the 1990s to enforce its Nixon-era Marine Mammal Protection Act. But the provisions related to imports, which comprise more than 90 per cent of the fish consumed in the U.S., have never been respected. In the case of one mammal, the endangered North American right whale, the report said interactions with fishing gear accounted for at least 1.8 whale deaths per year — a trend which would, it calculated, guarantee the species’ extinction. Harbour porpoises are dying in far greater overall numbers, with up to 2,900 snared by fishing equipment each year, and also face the risk of extinction. Canada, meanwhile, is not playing its part, the report said. “(In the U.S.), groundlines are required to sink during certain times and in certain areas to reduce large whale entanglement. Canadian fishers have no such requirements,” it said. “The (U.S. National Marine) Fisheries Service also requires lobstermen to use weak links designed to break free under the pressure exerted by a whale, a requirement not imposed on Canadian lobstermen.” The Canadian government, which is reviewing the report, did not immediately comment on its findings. The Natural Resources Defence Council is one of the more influential environmental NGOs in the U.S., with $182.8 million in net assets according to its latest available tax filing.
A member of the RCMP protective detail tries to remove a protester who walked onto the stage as Prime Minister Stephen Harper spoke Monday in Vancouver.
Harper promises pipeline safety as climate protesters pierce PM’s
security January 6, 2014
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems OTTAWA — Prime Minister Stephen Harper vowed Monday his government will not approve oil pipelines unless they fulfill the country’s “economic interests” and meet the “highest standards” of environmental protection. Harper made the comment at an event in Vancouver sponsored by the city’s board of trade where two environmental protesters carrying signs managed to come within feet of the prime minister as he sat on stage. The protesters, one of whom held a sign saying “Climate justice now,” were hustled away by security officials and Harper reached for a drink of water as he prepared to answer questions from board of trade president Iain Black. “I’d like to take a minute and have some folks removed from the stage,” said Black. “It wouldn’t be B.C. without it,” Harper said. Then, during a 30-minute question and answer session with Black, Harper painted a rosy picture of what could lie ahead for Canada. Among his predictions:
The economy in 2014 could improve over past years, as Europe’s economic crisis dips to a “trough” and the United States experiences economic growth. Canada’s economic long-term picture looks “optimistic.” The federal deficit, thanks to economic growth and budget cuts, will be eliminated by 2015. The Canada-Europe free trade deal reached last year has the potential to significantly boost the Canadian economy. First Nations will have an unprecedented opportunity to participate in resource development projects that create jobs and bring aboriginal communities into the “mainstream” of the Canadian economy.
Nonetheless, Monday’s security breach involving protesters highlighted what is expected to be a year filled with contentious issues for the prime minister. As it heads into 2014, Harper’s government faces some tough political choices that could inspire strong opposition in British Columbia among politicians, environmentalists and aboriginals. At the top of the list is whether to approve the proposed Northern Gateway pipeline, which would carry crude from Alberta to the B.C. port of Kitimat, where it would be placed on oil tankers and then brought to foreign markets. Harper declined to specifically discuss that project, because it was given the regulatory green light by the National Energy Board in December and the federal cabinet must now decide in coming months whether to also give it clearance. But the prime minister did insist that whenever his government reviews proposals for resource development projects, it follows “the best scientific and expert advise available.”
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems “Our government has committed to making sure that we have rigorous systems of pipeline safety, rigorous systems of marine protection and that we fully respect our constitutional duties to consult with aboriginal communities,” said Harper. “We will do all of these things. And we will not approve projects unless they are not only in our economic interests, but as said, they meet the highest standards of environmental protection.” Harper said there’s a reason that his government is keen to delve into various experts’ reports that have been submitted about pipeline safety. “I mean it, we want to make sure that these kinds of projects are not just economically viable and give us lots of economic prosperity. We want to make sure that they are environmentally safe. And we want to make sure that every measure is taken to prevent any kind of serious environmental threat or other kind of disaster. And in the hopefully rare cases where those happen, that there are adequate responses.” The proposed $8-billion Northern Gateway pipeline is far from a sure thing — even if it receives the blessing of the federal cabinet. It will likely face court challenges from First Nations and political opposition within the province might rise. In Ottawa, federal NDP leader Tom Mulcair has predicted the pipeline will never be built. On Monday, while insisting he could not publicly pass judgment on Northern Gateway, Harper spoke strongly about the need to get Alberta oil to foreign markets. He said Canada sells about 99 per cent of its “energy” to one country — the U.S. — and it’s important to find other customers. “In an era where there is energy demand all over the world, where the energy industry has been the engine of much of Canada’s economic growth and also at a time where for various reasons American demand for energy may fall in the near term, it is without a doubt in the country’s interests that we diversify our markets for energy resources.” Meanwhile, Harper once again touted the benefits of the proposed Keystone XL pipeline from Alberta to the U.S. Gulf Coast. U.S. President Barack Obama has yet to give the project the green light; Harper said the longawaited decision has been “punted” by Obama. Last fall, Harper said he won’t take “no” for an answer from the Obama administration and that the pipeline will eventually be built. “I am confident that in due course — I can’t put a timeline on that — the project will one way or another proceed,” he said Monday.
State to Pursue Equity Partnership in Gasline
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems Anchorage, Alaska – Governor Sean Parnell today announced that the State of Alaska will pursue becoming an equity partner in the Alaska LNG project. The governor also announced the state will terminate its involvement with TransCanada as its licensee under the Alaska Gasline Inducement Act (AGIA), and partner with the company in a more traditional commercial agreement. “For the first time in our state’s history, the framework is in place to build an all-Alaska gasline on Alaska’s terms and in Alaskans’ interests,” Governor Parnell said. “We have all the necessary parties to make an Alaska gasline project go - three producers, a pre-eminent pipeline builder, an entity in AGDC that can carry Alaskans’ interests, and state agencies responsible for the royalties and taxes.” The governor stated he soon expects a commercial agreement, known as a Heads of Agreement, for the Alaska LNG project. The agreement is anticipated to be signed by Exxon, BP, ConocoPhillips, TransCanada, the Alaska Gasline Development Corporation (AGDC), and by the commissioners of the Departments of Revenue and Natural Resources. The Heads of Agreement will be subject to public review by the Legislature. “As a partner in the gasline project, Alaska will control its own destiny,” Governor Parnell said. “Ownership ensures we either pay ourselves for project services, or negotiate and ensure the lowest possible costs. As a partner, Alaskans stand to gain more.” Governor Parnell also intends to introduce legislation addressing how the state will manage its gas resources by authorizing the Department of Natural Resources to modify certain leases, and enter into shipping agreements to move and sell the state’s natural gas. The legislation will propose moving from a variable net tax to a flat gross tax for North Slope gas, allow certain leases to pay production taxes with gas, and enable the Departments of Revenue and Natural Resources to manage the state’s gas revenues. “While most Alaskans have seen past efforts to develop a large gas project falter for various reasons, this time is different,” Governor Parnell added. “AGDC is our ‘ace in the hole,’ meaning we can still opt for the smaller volume ASAP project.”
Rene Sanchez Galindo, the attorney for the group Acción Colectiva, revealed the failure of the appeals in a special announcement late last week.
Mexican Judge Throws out Monsanto Appeal to Confirm GM Maize Ban A Mexican judge has thrown out the appeals of Mexico’s SEMARNAT (Environment and Natural Resources Ministry), and Monsanto, who were attempting to overturn aSeptember court ruling that banned the planting of GM maize in Mexico. December 30, 2013
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems Acción Colectiva, a group of 53 scientists and 22 organizations, which successfully brought the case to ban GM maize in Mexico, is led by Father Miguel Concha of the Human Rights Center Fray Francisco de Vittoria; Victor Suarez of ANEC (National Association of Rural Commercialization Entertprises); Dr. Mercedes Lopéz of Vía Organica; and Adelita San Vicente, a teacher and member of Semillas de Vida, a national organization that has been involved in broad-based social action projects to protect Mexico’s important status as a major world center of food crop biodiversity. Sanchez Galindo stated that “the new court decision will maintain the temporary suspension of all trials and commercial planting of GM maize in Mexico, ordered by the first court ruling in September.”
The latest decision also goes further in securing the first judgment by stating that even if a new court case is filed on this subject by Monsanto and its government supporters, the suspension shall remain in effect until the appeals court has made a final ruling.
Which country is more corrupt?
It seems Monsanto can buy Canadian judges but not Mexican judges.
The Mexican federal government had allowed trial crops of GM maize to be planted in Mexico since 2009 before the shock decision in September made by the Twelfth Federal District Court for Civil Matters of Mexico City. Judge Jaime Eduardo Verdugo J. cited: “the risk of imminent harm to the environment” as the basis for the decision.
“the risk of imminent harm to the environment” The Judge’s ruling means that multinationals such as Monsanto and Pioneer are legally banned from releasing GM maize into the Mexican countryside.
Father Miguel Concha said the Judge’s decision reflected a commitment to respect the Precautionary Principle expressed in various international treaties and statements on human rights. Concha emphasized that the government is obliged to protect the human rights of Mexicans against the economic interests of big business.
Catfish with coal ash from the Emory River, TN, December 2008
Giving Thanks for the End of Catfish Stuffing November 2013
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems Five years ago, fish biologists scooped up a catfish full of toxic ash from the Kingston coal ash disaster. Last month, the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia brought us one step closer to ensuring such a disaster will never happen again. The court ruled that the Environmental Protection Agency must set federal standards to prevent another potentially deadly disaster, protecting aquatic life and the hundreds of communities that live near coal-burning power plants This momentous decision requires the EPA to finally set federal regulations for the safe disposal of toxic coal ash. Our lawsuit was a deadline case to force the EPA to review and revise its regulations pertaining to coal ash—the second largest industrial waste stream generated in the United States. These regulations had not been revised for decades, and they currently contain no specific standards to address the serious health and environmental damage caused by coal ash. The nation was awakened to the threat posed by coal ash almost five years ago after the earthen dam at TVA’s Kingston power plant collapsed—releasing more than 1 billon gallons of toxic waste into rivers and destroying an idyllic waterfront community. Following that disaster, then-Administrator Lisa Jackson made a commitment to issue regulations requiring the safe disposal of toxic ash within the year. That was 2009. Although the EPA eventually published draft regulations in 2010, little progress was made in the last three-and-a-half years, despite intense public interest. The scope of the coal ash threat is immense—and this ruling comes none too soon to protect the air, water and public safety of communities living near more than 1,000 toxic ash impoundments, over 350 landfills, and countless pits of coal ash found in almost every state in this nation. Coal ash has already contaminated more than 200 rivers, lakes, streams and aquifers with toxic pollutants like arsenic, lead, selenium and mercury. We turned to the courts to force the EPA to set long-overdue protections from this toxic menace, and they did not disappoint. This decision marks the first step towards long overdue federally enforceable safeguards. No one should have to live in fear of the coal ash dump in their backyard, and now the EPA must finally adopt regulations that protect all neighboring communities. We are deeply thankful that protection from waterborne and airborne toxic chemicals is on the way this year.
Canadian and U.S. scientists use the Canadian Coast Guard vessel, the CCGS Henry Larsen
government cutting more than $100 million related to protection
of water December 27, 2013 OTTAWA — More than $100 million in cuts are underway at the federal department in charge of protecting Canada’s water and oceans, despite recommendations from top bureaucrats that it needs to increase spending for both environmental and economic reasons. According to internal federal briefing notes obtained by Postmedia News, Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s government is eliminating about 500 jobs at the Department of Fisheries and Oceans related to Coast Guard services, patrols to stop illegal fishing activities as well as scientific research to promote conservation, protect endangered species, and prevent industrial water pollution. The cuts, part of the federal government’s efforts to eliminate its deficit, cover 26 different areas of the department which has a workforce of about 10,000 employees. The downsizing also includes the shutdown of federal libraries and millions of dollars in reductions to climate change adaptation programs. In total, the department estimates it will cut about $80 million per year from its budget by 2014-15, and over $100 million per year in the following fiscal year. But the cuts coincide with internal advice from top bureaucrats that the government should instead be increasing its spending in the department to protect both economic and environmental interests, particularly for Coast Guard services which are facing cuts equivalent to about $20 million by 201415 and 300 full-time jobs. “Rising marine traffic, technological changes, climate change impacts (such as fluctuating water levels), and extended shipping seasons are among the factors expected to continue to place increased demands on Coast Guard services,” said briefing notes prepared for the department’s deputy minister Matthew King in December 2012. “For example, there are demands for increasing icebreaking services on the Gulf of St. Lawrence and on the Great Lakes, for extending Marine Communications and Traffic Services, aids to navigation and ice breaking services in the Quebec North and Arctic for additional environmental response as well as search and rescue capacities in selected areas.”
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems The department is in the process of eliminating the equivalent of about 96 full-time positions and slashing spending by about $6 million in its Marine Communications and Traffic Centres which provide “distress and safety call monitoring” and other services to ensure safe and efficient movement of marine vessels. The department’s restructuring also follows a shift in its mandate from the Harper government’s 2012 budget, which introduced what it described as “responsible resource development” by eliminating a series of environmental laws and replacing them with new ones that significantly reduced federal oversight on industrial development. Those changes revamped a longstanding water pollution prevention law, the Fisheries Act, that required the protection of all fish habitat, replacing it with a new law that only requires the protection of water when humans are nearby. In the midst of the overhaul, Fisheries and Oceans Minister Gail Shea told Parliament in a recent report that her department was on the right track. “It is my sincere belief that our work will enable us to fulfill our vision, which is to advance sustainable aquatic ecosystems and support safe and secure Canadian waters while fostering economic prosperity across maritime sectors and fisheries,” she said in her department’s performance report for 2012-13. The department is also significantly reducing surveillance patrols of fishing activities off the coast of Newfoundland as part of the government’s activities within the Northwest Atlantic Fisheries Organization, cutting the equivalent of about $4.2 million and 23 full-time positions. The department told Postmedia News that these cuts to NAFO were based on several positive developments in recent years, including a 90 per cent drop in the number of serious cases of noncompliance by foreign fishing vessels since 2005, from 29 cases to 10 cases in 2011. Other cuts to scientific research at the department include:
$1 million in cuts and seven jobs eliminated through the closure of conservation and protection offices. $1.5 million in cuts and about 14 job losses resulting from the transfer of the Experimental Lakes Area, a system of lakes near Kenora in western Ontario where scientists have studied the impacts of industrial pollution on water for decades. $1.7 million in cuts and 27 job losses following the elimination of an in-house research program examining biological impacts of contaminants, pesticides and the oil and gas industry, and turning instead toward a “small advisory group” to “outsource” research needs.
“Since the announcement, media attention has focused on the capacity of the department and its scientists to provide adequate and timely advice to the government on the potential effects of accidental spills of contaminants, especially oil, gas and diluted bitumen, into the environment,” said the briefing material prepared for the deputy minister, that was marked “secret.” Scientists from other departments, such as Environment Canada and Natural Resources Canada were also doing some new research in recent months on the behaviour of diluted bitumen, the product from Canada’s oilsands industry, in water to help oil companies prepare for environmental disasters.
City of Vancouver, BC: Approved motion regarding proposed Kinder Morgan expansion Andrea Reimer: “Council passed Mayor Gregor Robertson’s motion unanimously last Wednesday (12/18), which was a surprise and a testament to how important your letter - and the letters of the 748 others who wrote in support over the last 24 hours – is. “
The Alberta government is handing over the regulatory responsibility for the province’s tar sands industry to a corporation that’s funded entirely by Canada’s oil, coal and gas industry.
Alberta’s Tar Sands Will Now Be Regulated By Fossil Fuels-Funded Group December 26, 2013
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems The Alberta Energy Regulator (AER) is taking over the duties of the now defunct Energy Resources Conservation Board (ERCB) — which was funded in part by taxpayers — and Alberta Environment and Sustainable Resource Development. Previously, the ERCB was responsible for making sure “appropriate precautions are taken to develop oil sands resources in the interests of all Albertans…through regulation, reviewing applications, managing conditions and approvals, surveillance, and enforcement” — now, those responsibilities will fall to the AER. On top of that, according to the AER’s website, the AER’s duties include “allocating and conserving water resources, managing public lands, and protecting the environment while securing their economic benefits for all Albertans,” as well as administering Canada’s Water Act and Public Lands Act, dealing with fossil fuel-related spills, and approving or denying oil and gas permits. The shift to the AER as the main environmental regulator in Alberta is part of the provincial government’s plan to streamline the approval process for oil companies. It’s drawn concern from environmentalists in Alberta, who are worried that the AER’s financial backing from the fossil fuel industry makes the group too close to the industry it’s supposed to regulate. Adding to their worry is the fact that the AER’s chairman of the board, Gerry Protti, is one of the founders of the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers, a major oil lobbying group. “This is just another step going down this road — we now have a regulator whose prime mandate in legislation is to promote economic development, and it is now also the prime environmental enforcer in the oilpatch,” Alberta legislative assembly member Rachel Notley told the Edmonton Journal. The AER won’t be the first fossil fuel-funded organization to oversee the tar sands, however — air quality in the tar sands region is monitored by the Wood Buffalo Environmental Association, a group that’s funded by Canada’s oil and gas industry. Tar sands development in Alberta has come under public scrutiny recently, as debates over Keystone XL and other pipelines that would carry the bitumen heat up. One study found levels of air pollution downwind of the oil and tar sands-rich “Industrial Heartland” of Alberta rival levels found in the world’s most polluted cities, and that the pollution could be tied increased incidence of blood cancers in men that live in the area.
This year, an environmental report card found that the climate change impacts of oil sands and other unconventional fuel sources in Canada were growing. And on average, according to the ERCB, Alberta has had two oil spills per day, every day, for the past 37 years.
The setting sun reflects off a tailings pond behind Syncrude’s oilsands upgrading facility north of Fort McMurray on June 18. The plant converts bitumen extracted from oilsands into synthetic crude oil, which is then piped to southern refineries. Alberta’s oilsands are the third largest proven oil reserve in the world.
75 Alberta environment regulators now paid by oil industry December 23, 2013
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems EDMONTON - More than 75 environment officers who watched over oil industry activities left the provincial environment department this fall, to take higher paying jobs with the new industry-funded Alberta Energy Regulator. Another 75-plus are expected to leave in the spring. In mid-November, the department also began handing over to the regulator thousands of files on oil industry activity pertaining to the Public Lands Act, according to documents obtained by the Journal. This shift in staffing and the moving of years of files out of a government department to the new arm’s length regulator are key steps in the government’s plan, announced last spring, to create a more streamlined approval process for oil companies that wanted “one window” to get permits for new projects. Previously, companies had to apply to the environment department for some permits and to the old regulator, the now defunct Energy Resources Conservation Board. To achieve the “one window,” the provincial government handed over to the privately funded regulator responsibility for administering the Water Act, Public Lands Act, and the Environmental Protection and Enhancement Act (dealing with spills) as they pertain to energy companies. Former Energy Minister Ken Hughes said last spring that the new regulator will have checks and transparency built in to make sure it enforces environment laws as strongly as occurred under the environment department. The new regulator is funded solely by industry, whereas previously, the regulator was funded jointly by industry and government.
But New Democrat Rachel Notley worries the dismantling of large parts of the environment department will result in weaker protection because the Alberta Energy Regulator’s mandate is to advance oil industry activity. “This is just another step going down this road — we now have a regulator whose prime mandate in legislation is to promote economic development and it is now also the prime environmental enforcer in the oilpatch,” said Notley. Environment department staff began to move over in September, with the bulk leaving in late November, according to documents. The group includes fish and wildlife officers, forestry officers, biologists, and rangers in various locations. The salaries in some cases are 25 to 80 per cent higher, noted Mike Dempsey, a vice-president of the Alberta Union of Provincial Employees. Many are union members who must give up AUPE membership to transfer, he added. “We’re hoping they are bringing their work ethic over there,” said Dempsey. “We’re trying to take a glass-is-half-full approach. “
But there’s “a lot of talk around the coffee table,” about the perception of potential conflict of interest when employees’ salaries are paid by the industry they are enforcing, and not by taxpayers, he said.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems “How unbiased can this be, just in perception?” said Dempsey. Enforcement officers “will be in the position” of handing out penalties for poor practices on landclearing to the companies paying their salaries, said Dempsey, adding that the department urged staff to apply for the new jobs. The change for environmental enforcement is major and must be closely watched, said Notley.
“I think it’s going to come down to the culture of the organization,” and industry has more opportunity to influence the new regulator given that its chairman of the board is Gerry Protti, a founder of the oil industry lobby group, the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers, she said. Under Protti is chief executive, Jim Ellis, a former deputy minister of environment. His record is troubling, said Notley. “It was on Ellis’s watch,” said Notley, that the department circulated an internal briefing note that criticized a respected environment group, the Pembina Institute, for publishing “negative media on the oilsands” and stated that was a reason to deny environmental groups standing at an oilsands hearing. The memo was revealed in a recent trial in which the judge ruled against the department. Notley said she’s also worried that if the new regulator takes a softer approach to environmental enforcement for the energy industry, other industries will push the environment department to adopt the same approach. Former Environment Minister Diana McQueen promised last spring that the department’s budget would not be cut, so there may be room to hire other staff, Notley noted. The environment department will still oversee industries such as forestry and gravel excavation, and develop the regional land-use plans that will be key in determining acceptable industry activity and pollution levels, McQueen said. Meanwhile, Brad Pickering, a longtime deputy minister, has been appointed to head Alberta’s environmental monitoring agency that will take over the job of measuring pollution in air, water and wildlife when the current joint federal provincial monitoring agency expires next year. That body may also hire away more people from the environment department, Dempsey added. Pickering has been deputy minister of tourism, parks and recreation, solicitor general, sustainable resource development and municipal affairs. Whitecourt MLA Robin Campbell took over the environment post two weeks ago.
A spokesperson for the Alberta Energy Regulator was unavailable for comment.
Port City Secures Six-Month Moratorium on OilSands Exports December 21, 2013 The city of South Portland, Maine banned the export of oilsands crude from local port facilities this week. Portland, the suburban community of 25,000 is the Atlantic terminal of the Portland Montreal Pipe Line, which currently carries millions of barrels of oil from the coast to refineries in Montreal. The city council is currently seeking to draft a law that would ban Portland Pipe Line Corp. from using Portland facilities to move western crude to the eastern seaboard.
“We applaud the City Council for their strong leadership in standing up to the oil industry,” said Roberta Zuckerman of Protect South Portland, a citizens group, told the Financial Post. “But now the City Council must turn the temporary ban on shipping tar sands out of our city into permanent legal protections.” The ban expires on May 6. By then the community hopes to have new regulations in place that permanently ban the transport of diluted bitumen along the pipeline from Montreal. When South Portland’s city council began workshops on the ban, the American Petroleum Institute sent a fiery five-page letter claiming that it would violate state and federal law, as well as the US constitution. South Portland isn’t the only city council willing to stand up to oil companies that put profits before environmental stewardship. In Vancouver, British Columbia earlier this month, Mayor Gregor Robertson tabled a motion for city council to intervene in coming National Energy Board meetings about the proposed expansion of the Kinder Morgan Transmountain Pipeline.
The mayor decided to speak out after a federal report found that Canada’s spill response system was not adequate to the current level of tanker traffic. According to the Kinder Morgan proposal, tanker traffic would soar from the current rate of five tankers per month to 34. “Today we received further evidence from staff that the threat of a major oil spill in or near Vancouver’s waters poses unacceptable risks to our local economy and environment,” he said. “The City of Vancouver’s intervention in the National Energy Board’s hearings will outline Vancouver’s significant concerns about a seven-fold increase in oil tanker traffic, and help ensure that our harbour, our local economy, and Vancouver treasures like Stanley Park are safe from the untold risks of a catastrophic oil spill.”
Newfoundland park, world heritage site spared from oil fracking December 14, 2013 ST. JOHN’S, N.L. – An oil exploration company that set off intense debate with plans to frack near Gros Morne National Park in western Newfoundland says it will lose its licence next month to drill wells near the UNESCO world heritage site. CEO Mark Jarvis of Shoal Point Energy Ltd. (CNSX:SPE) said his company’s bid to extend one of three exploration licences it holds in the province was rejected Dec. 5 by the Canada-Newfoundland and Labrador Offshore Petroleum Board.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems The company said the decision means his company will lose the licence as of Jan. 15 as well as a $1-million deposit made last January for a one-year extension on drilling exploration wells. “We are disappointed by this decision,” Jarvis said in a statement Thursday. Shoal Point Energy and Black Spruce Exploration, a subsidiary of Foothills Capital Corp., had proposed to hunt for oil in shale rock layers in enclaves surrounded by the park using hydraulic fracturing, also known as fracking.
The process involves pumping water, nitrogen, sand and chemical additives at high pressure to fracture shale rock formations and allow gas or oil to flow through well bores to the surface. The prospect of drilling in the Green Point shale near the picturesque park raised alarms about groundwater pollution and other risks. Last month, the provincial government shut the door on applications for hydraulic fracturing for oil and gas while it reviews regulations and consults residents. In a statement issued Friday the offshore board said it considered and rejected three separate proposals from the company for a one-year extension to its exploration licence. The board said in making its decision it considered that the licence was issued based on conventional exploration work and that eight years had passed with minimal exploration undertaken. It said the company’s proposal did not identify a plan to proceed with the drilling obligation on the licence and instead identified “a physical and legal impossibility to undertake a drilling program” in the only format now under consideration. The board also said the company did not incorporate a forfeiture of its drilling deposit for not meeting the obligations of the licence to date. Shoal Point Energy said it was willing to give up more than half of the approximately 202 hectares covered by the licence if the board approved the extension, including the portion neighbouring Gros Morne. The company said it was also prepared to make an additional drilling deposit of $250,000, but the board denied both requests. Jarvis said the Vancouver-based company felt its application respected the importance of the park. “Our proposal balanced a desire to protect this unique and beautiful park with a desire to safely and responsibly develop a much-needed economic opportunity on the west coast of Newfoundland,” he said. In total, the company’s three licences cover approximately 291 hectares in western Newfoundland. “We still have a very large prospective resource to explore and develop in our remaining exploration licences,” said Jarvis. “We believe that the majority of people in this area want economic opportunity, as long as they are satisfied that operations are safe and respect the environment.”
“Greenwashing” (aka: Bovine Excrement)
The manifold area at Trans Mountain Pipeline’s terminal in Burnaby. The federal government has quietly transferred its authority to assess potential damage pipelines cause to fish and fish habitat from the fisheries department to the National Energy Board.
National Energy Board quietly given authority to assess pipeline damage to fish December 18, 2013
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems OTTAWA — The federal government has transferred its authority to assess whether a pipeline would damage fish and fish habitat from the Fisheries Department to the National Energy Board. The agreement between Fisheries and the NEB was announced Monday, the day Kinder Morgan announced it has submitted its $5.4 billion plan to expand and modernize its pipeline from Alberta to Burnaby. The federal transfer, called disturbing by one fisheries watchdog group, was done as part of a broader Harper government program to “streamline application processes by eliminating the requirement for duplicate reviews,” according to an NEB news release. It is also intended to “promote clarity and consistency of the regulatory decision-making process.”
independent fisheries conservation organizations worth their salt recognize this relinquishing of DFO responsibilities is “greenwashing” (aka: Bovine Excrement) as it will remove the teeth from existing oversight.
transfer of responsibility will increase confusion and inconsistency..
As a result, the NEB “will now be responsible for assessing potential impacts to fisheries from proposed NEB-regulated pipeline and power line applications.” The Fisheries Department’s agreement with the NEB, a quasi-judicial independent body based in Calgary, includes a commitment to bring in “training and other knowledge transfer mechanisms” to the NEB to deal with fisheries protection and species at risk matters. Craig Orr, of the Watershed Watch Salmon Society, said the federal government is making a “disturbing” move. “What expertise does the NEB bring relative to the Fisheries Act?” said Orr, noting that even Fisheries Department officials are struggling to explain to the public the nuances of the new legislation introduced in 2012 on fisheries habitat protection. “So how much confidence should the public have in the NEB’s ability to assure Canadians fisheries values would be protected with pipeline development?” “DFO’s continual willingness to further downgrade protection of critical habitat for Pacific salmon is shocking,” said Green party leader Elizabeth May. She said it’s now clear the federal definitions of recreational, commercial, and aboriginal fisheries under the new protection scheme that they came straight from industry lobbying.
“We need to restore the Fisheries Act to its previous effectiveness, and we need to push back against changing B.C.’s classifications of what constitutes a recreational fishery. “
makes probability of oil spill very low, according to risk analysis done for Kinder Morgan January 10, 2014 Editorial Comment:
When it comes to Kinder Morgan’s proposed Trans Mountain pipeline expansion, the biggest fear of British Columbians is the increased risk of a catastrophic oil spill in the Salish Sea.
Many are rightfully concerned about expected pipeline leaks of toxic and impossible to clean up dilbit anywhere along the pipelines.
To gauge the probability of such a spill, the oil transport company sought an opinion from Det Norske Veritas, world-leading risk analysts. The company was reassured by the findings of their consultants. Det Norske Veritas calculations show the existing risk of a “worst-case” oil spill of 104,000 barrels in the Salish Sea is extremely low: once in 3,000 years.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems The risk increases significantly — to once in 460 years — with the jump in tanker traffic from Kinder Morgan’s $5.4-billion Trans Mountain pipeline expansion. But the probability of such a spill is driven back down to once in 2,300 years when the company’s proposed mitigation measures, including additional tug escorts, are factored in. Annual tanker traffic would increase six-fold, to 408 return trips. The figures are outlined in a 15,000-page project application submitted to the National Energy Board (NEB) last month. For a spill half the size of a worst-case spill, the probability increases to once in 437 years. For a spill of any kind, as low as less than one barrel, it jumps again to 237 years. The estimates are based on historical accident and spill figures, and include future ship traffic projections. The findings give the company confidence tankers will continue to safely navigate the Strait of Juan de Fuca, thread Haro Strait and Boundary Pass through the San Juan and Gulf Islands, and into the Strait of Georgia, eventually passing Stanley Park and into the slim gap of the Second Narrows rail bridge to Westridge Terminal. Whether Kinder Morgan’s calculations will provide assurance to its long list of opponents is another question. Most critics tend to focus less on the probability of a major oil spill, and more on the consequences should one happen. (Kinder Morgan has also proposed to increase oil-spill response capacity). With the devastating effects of the 1989 Exxon Valdez oil spill still in mind, environmentalists, communities in the Gulf Islands but also Vancouver, and First Nations, point to the consequences a major incident would have in the Salish Sea — an area rich in aquatic life and wildlife and renowned for its beauty. As the province’s tourism slogan “Beautiful B.C.” suggests, the promise of unsullied nature is a draw for visitors from around the world. The marine environment in the region is also a playground for the 11 million residents of British Columbia and Washington state. Computer spill scenarios in Kinder Morgan’s project application show oil from a spill could end up on the shoreline of Washington state. “You can come up with a doomsday scenario, but it’s not really helpful to the discourse unless we can frame it in terms of how likely it is to happen,” says Michael Davies, director of marine development for Kinder Morgan. “What sets the work apart that we’ve provided in the application, is the fact we have this risk assessment on the probability side. And that’s an important piece for the public to understand.”
About 60 Aframax-size tankers — which can only be loaded about 80 per cent to 585,000 barrels so they can safely make it through the Second Narrows — already dock each year at the Westridge Terminal in Burnaby. Many, such as the 250-metre DHT Sophie, which loaded at Westridge a week ago, are headed to refineries in California. But there’s been increasing demand by Alberta oilsands producers to access new markets in Asia. Their goals are being championed by both the Alberta and Canadian governments. Canada is almost solely reliant on the U.S. as a destination for its oil. Both Enbridge’s $6.5-billion Northern Gateway pipeline through northern B.C. and Kinder Morgan’s expansion of its Trans Mountain pipeline are meant to satisfy this export appetite. The additional 350 tanker loadings each year from the Kinder Morgan expansion will be added to more than 500 tankers that already ply the Salish Sea, headed to refineries in Washington state. In an effort to keep the calculated risk of a major spill extremely low, Kinder Morgan is proposing to fill in gaps in tug escorts between Westridge Terminal and the Pacific Ocean. Tankers already have to be tethered to powerful tugs through the Burrard Inlet from the Westridge Terminal to English Bay, and again at East Point at the southeast tip of Saturna Island to Brotchie Ledge south of Esquimalt on Vancouver Island. The tug escort continues to Race Rocks, south of Metchosin, but without the requirement of cables. Kinder Morgan proposes adding escort tug coverage from Burrard Inlet to East Point, and from Race Rocks to the entrance of the Strait of Juan de Fuca. It would provide full escort tug coverage, protecting against a loss of power and grounding along the inner coastline route. The company has also proposed the creation of a moving exclusion zone around loaded tankers, perhaps as much as 500 metres, which would be monitored by the Canadian and U.S. coast guards. The new provisions would be added to rules and practices for oil tankers that are already restrictive. Two years ago, the federal safety agency Pacific Pilotage Authority added a requirement for two pilots to help navigate tankers through local waters. The pilots use their own independent navigational equipment. Tankers are restricted to daylight hours, and must pass through Second Narrows at slack tide, when currents are slowest, and when the passage is clear of other vessels. Tankers are also vetted for age and maintenance records and are subject to Transport Canada inspections.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems Canadian rules also require double-hulled tankers, to lessen the risk of puncture should the ship run aground.
The Exxon Valdez was single hulled, and had no pilots or tug escorts. Pacific Pilotage Authority CEO Kevin Obermeyer said he cannot guarantee a spill is never going to happen, but stressed the safety is so high already the risk is minute. “With all the additional checks and balances that Kinder Morgan is putting in place, I think they are working as hard as we are to ensure this never happens,” said Obermeyer. He notes there’s never been a major oil tanker incident in B.C. waters. When looking at all tanker mishaps, including smaller vessels carrying chemicals and liquids such as canola, there have been few serious incidents in the past two decades. According to Pacific Pilotage Authority data cited in Kinder Morgan’s application, there were only six tanker incidents in the past 20 years. The numbers don’t include other shipping incidents involving large ships. For example, on Dec. 7, 2012, a bulk carrier sliced through a causeway and Westshore Terminals coal conveyor at Roberts Bank, dumping some coal into the ocean. The last tanker incident was in 2008, when the chemical tanker Fujigawa damaged a midship rail at Lynnterm Terminal in North Vancouver. Other incidents in 1999, 1997 and 1994 were also minor in nature, with damage taking place at dockside. In the past decade, the largest oil spill the industry-funded western Canadian Marine Response Corp. (WCMRC) dealt with was at Westridge Terminal in 2007. But that leak was from a pipeline punctured by an excavator, not a marine spill. The most recent call-out for the response team was two months ago, when it cleaned up two tonnes of canola in Burrard Inlet. The organization, created in 1971, has never responded to a major oil tanker spill, noted WCMRC spokesman Michael Lowry. Critics of the pipeline expansion are not satisfied with Kinder Morgan’s risk analysis or the oil tanker safety record in B.C. They point to a Nestucca tank barge spill in Washington state on Dec. 23, 1988 in which 5,500 barrels were spilled after a tug hit the barge. Oil reached beaches in northern Oregon, and a week later washed up on Vancouver Island shores. Tens of thousands of sea birds died, according to a 2011 report from the Pacific States/British Columbia Oil Spill Task Force.
Also of concern is a November 2009 incident in which the bulk carrier Hebei Lion dragged its anchor in high winds and was blown on to a rocky reef near Mayne Island, also noted in the task force report. That incident was a wake-up call for Gulf Island residents, says Islands Trust chairwoman Sheila Malcolmson. The Trust, which has municipal responsibilities for the Gulf Islands, opposes the Kinder Morgan expansion. “Any spill is going to be bad news,” said Malcolmson, noting the islands are an ecologically sensitive area with “funky” currents. “We don’t have any confidence that Canada is in a position to handle the risk we have now, let alone the risk that’s posed by an additional almost 400 tankers a year through our waters,” she said. Living Oceans Society executive director Karen Wristen does not trust Kinder Morgan’s risk analysis. She points to a federal government-commissioned risk analysis carried out in 1990 following the Exxon Valdez spill that found the probability of a “catastrophic” marine oil spill — of over 84,000 barrels — can be expected once every 15 years in Canadian waters. A major spill of 100 to 10,000 tonnes was probable once a year. The highest risk was pegged in Eastern Canada, particularly Newfoundland. “Somebody has to explain to me how we get from one in 15 years to one in 2,500 some-odd while increasing the number of vessels out here,” said Wristen. “You are playing with numbers,” she argued, while acknowledging that her organization does not have the money to hire experts to “poke credible holes” in Kinder Morgan’s risk analysis. Wristen said the increased tanker traffic conflicts with protection requirements for federally designated habitat in southern waters for killer and humpback whales. Under federal laws, the whales are meant to be protected from identified threats, said Wristen. She said it’s a “no brainer” that an oil spill is a threat to the whales, adding even the underwater noise and an increased risk of strikes of whales by the ships is a problem. “There’s no way we should be shipping any oil out of the Burrard Inlet and through the Salish Sea,” Wristen said.
Ottawa hires ad firm for $22 million oilsands campaign The Canadian arm of FleishmanHillard has been tapped to develop a $22 million ad campaign promoting the oilsands abroad. January 9, 2014
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems OTTAWA—The federal government has tapped an international public relations firm to roll out a $22 million advertising campaign promoting the oilsands and Canada’s natural resource sector across the world. The Canadian arm of FleishmanHillard has been awarded a $1.695 million contract to oversee the first phase of the ad blitz, expected to be deployed in United States, Europe, and Asia this year. Should the firm’s contract be extended into 2015, the work could be worth as much as $4 million, with the remaining $18 million budgeted for media buys. The PR firm, which has previously done strategic communications work and public opinion research for at least two other federal departments, boasts a number of offices in all three targeted markets. According to Natural Resources Canada, FleishmanHillard will be responsible for developing and producing the print, Internet and television ads, as well as drawing up overarching public relations, advertising and social media strategies. The firm is also being asked to liaise with Department of Foreign Affairs trade missions to tailor the ads to the different concerns and requirements in the three markets. The federal government has already suggested draft messaging for the campaign, mostly focusing on Canada’s “responsible” resource development — with the word “responsible” underlined in the department’s request for proposals — and the country’s environmental record. The department also called investment opportunities in Canada’s resource sector “unparalleled,” and suggested the country is a leader in sustainable and stable energy sources when compared to the alternatives. While the campaign is intended to include Canada’s natural resource sector as a whole, the RFP explicitly mentions Alberta bitumen only. Similar messaging was tested in Washington focus groups in April 2013. In a September report to the department, Harris Decima found the groups had “neutral to positive” responses to ads proposing increased energy partnership between the United States and its northern neighbour. “Overall, it was fairly clear that Canada is held in fairly high regard, even if it is not often considered, and that an element of that high regard relates to Canada being a competent and trustworthy neighbour/partner — both in terms of industrial partnerships and acting responsibly,” says the report, commissioned at a cost of $58,000. One focus group considered Canada a “preferred energy supplier,” and others reacted positively to a greater reliance on “friendly oil” and continental energy security. Despite those positive results, Ottawa has received a chilly reception from the Obama administration on the proposed Keystone XL pipeline, a project vehemently opposed by environmentalists in the U.S.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems The federal government also faces continued domestic opposition to the proposed Northern Gateway pipeline, which would transport Alberta crude to the British Columbia coast. David Provencher, a spokesman for Natural Resources Minister Joe Oliver, said the advertising campaign will “better inform” other markets about Canada’s natural resource sector to ensure “a factbased public dialogue.” “The objectives of the ad campaign are to raise awareness of Canada’s environmental record and the shared U.S.-Canada energy interest and needs,” said Provencher, in a written statement. “The campaign is also intended to raise awareness among decision-makers in Europe and the Asia Pacific that Canada is a secure, reliable and responsible supplier of crude oil, natural gas and other natural resources.” NDP House leader Nathan Cullen, who has been fighting against the Northern Gateway project, accused the government of using the ad campaign to “greenwash” Canada’s international reputation — a reputation he says has been severely damaged in recent years. Cullen also questioned the need to spend public funds to help natural resource companies sell their products. “Of all the industries, I didn’t know that oil and gas and mining companies were so impoverished that they couldn’t take ads out in newspapers,” Cullen said Tuesday. “I don’t know why we’re subsidizing Shell and Chevron in their efforts to sell oil. I think they’re more than capable of doing that themselves.” Requests for an interview left with FleishmanHillard’s Ottawa office — listed as the bid winner on a federal government website — were not returned. Natural Resources noted that while the estimated budget for the ad campaign is $22 million, the final cost will not be released until the government’s 2014-2015 annual report on advertising expenses.
There is no throne so high that it cannot be shaken by laughter from beneath. The Harper government is spending $16 million of our money on a greenwashing ad campaign to paint the tar sands as environmentally friendly. What this ad campaign doesn’t tell you is how the Harper government gutted Canada’s environmental laws in order to fast-track new tar sands mines and pipelines as part of the omnibus budget bills. And it certainly doesn’t tell you that tar sands development has made Canada one of the world’s biggest polluters and contributors to climate change. We think this is ripe for some old-fashioned Canadian satire, so we’ve created our own ad campaign. And while we will never be able to match the government and oil industry ad budgets, with your help we can use humour to turn their own ad budgets against them. If enough people see our ads, the tar sands’ spin doctors will realize that the more of our tax money that they spend on public relations to sell the tar sands as environmentally friendly, the more ridiculous they are making themselves look. Our goal is that they will cancel their ads faster than you can say, “oil spills create jobs.” Please chip in to help us run our ad on multiple prime time TV shows.
Donate And sign the petition to have the ad budget spent on real climate solutions like renewable energy. Let’s laugh Harper’s tar sands ads right off the air. Watch all three videos on Youtube:
Tar Sands Greenwash: Buying Ads is Easy Tar Sands Greenwash: Good News, Bad News Tar Sands Greenwash: Greenwash 2.0
Kirkland Signature Atlantic Salmon FAQ's Please see below for answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about the Kirkland Signature Atlantic Salmon.
Where does your farmed salmon come from? We currently purchase our Atlantic boneless skinless salmon fillet from Chile and Canada. We have purchased from Norway, Scotland, and Ireland in the past.
What do farmed salmon eat? A farmed salmon’s diet contains the following ingredients: Fish meals (herring, sardines, capelin), plant proteins (soybean meal, canola meal, wheat), fish oils (menhaden, herring or sardine), plant oils (soybean, canola, or corn), vitamins, minerals, carotenoid compound for red/orange color, binder (complex carbohydrates to hold diets together). *GMO’s (genetically modified organisms) or steroids are never used for growth enhancements.
Are antibiotics or tranquilizers used in salmon farming? Antibiotics are used only under strict supervision of a licensed veterinarian and are subject to the same strict regulations for beef and poultry. Our salmon farmers do not use tranquilizers.
Do we test our salmon fillets and what do we test for? Yes, we currently have testing in place. We have the salmon tested at the processing plants in Canada and Chile. Costco Wholesale also does monthly testing. We test for pesticides and heavy metals (aluminum, lead, iron, silver, copper, zinc, mercury, titanium, arsenic, and magnesium). Micro-biological testing is also done (bacteria counts, salmonella, listeria, mold, yeast, and TPC). After all that, we do the physical testing (net weight, trim specification, color, bones, and skin).
Do salmon farms spread disease? Salmon farmers follow stringent fish health practices where brood-stock and eggs are rigorously tested and the salmon are raised in disease free water. Records show that the only disease found in farmed salmon are those which occur naturally in the wild salmon population.
What are the benefits to eating salmon? Salmon is rich in Omega-3 fatty acids. Studies have found that people who eat salmon foods rich in Omega-3 fatty acids, have a reduced risk of heart disease.
Norwegian feedlot salmon detract from “Scottish Quality”
NOAA: Coastal ocean aquaculture can be environmentally sustainable Little to no effects on coastal ocean environment seen with proper safeguards, planning December 18, 2013 Specific types of fish farming can be accomplished with minimal or no harm to the coastal ocean environment as long as proper planning and safeguards are in place, according to a new report from researchers at NOAA’s National Ocean Service. The study, led by scientists at National Ocean Service’s National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science (NCCOS), evaluated the environmental effects of finfish aquaculture, including interactions with water quality, benthic habitats, and marine life across various farming practices and habitat types. “We did this study because of concerns that putting marine finfish farms in the coastal ocean could have adverse effects on the environment,” said Dr. James Morris, NCCOS ecologist. “We found that, in cases where farms are appropriately sited and responsibly managed, impacts to the environment are minimal to non-existent.” “This report provides coastal and farm managers with a global perspective on a range of potential environmental effects and their relative intensity,” said Dr. Michael Rubino, director of NOAA Fisheries Office of Aquaculture. “It is a tool that can be used when evaluating proposed or operational farming sites and gives them a factual basis to make decisions.” In the report, scientists said that continued development of regional best-management practices and standardized protocols for environmental monitoring are key needs for aquaculture managers. As aquaculture development increases in the coastal ocean, the ability to forecast immediate or longterm environmental concerns will provide confidence to coastal managers and the public. “This report contributes to the growing body of evidence supporting marine aquaculture as a sustainable source of safe, healthy and local seafood that supports jobs in coastal communities,” said Sam Rauch, acting assistant NOAA administrator for NOAA Fisheries. The National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science is the coastal science office for NOAA’s National Ocean Service. Visit our website or follow our blog to read more about NCCOS research. NOAA’s mission is to understand and predict changes in the Earth's environment, from the depths of the ocean to the surface of the sun, and to conserve and manage our coastal and marine resources.
Farmed fish line raises questions December 20, 2013 A Bristol Bay resident on vacation in the Lower 48 last week was surprised to pick up a package of Ocean Beauty Seafoods Cajun smoked salmon and find on the back the words "Farm Raised, Product of Chile." Ocean Beauty Seafoods — a major player in the U.S. seafood market — is half owned by the Bristol Bay Economic Development Corporation, a nonprofit community development corporation that provides jobs, training and educational opportunities to eligible residents of Bristol Bay. The corporation — founded in 1992 as the Community Development Quota Holder — is also charged with providing economic development tools and resources for communities in the region - particularly in relation to fisheries.
So a company half-owned by Bristol Bay fishermen selling farmed salmon products was a surprise to some, especially fishermen who remember the price dive Alaska salmon took in the '90s as farmed fish began flooding the market. But some fishermen, as well the head of Bristol Bay Economic Development Corporation and the vice president of marketing at Ocean Beauty Seafoods all say farmed fish is for the most part good for Alaska salmon. "Producing smoked salmon from farmed fish is what allowed us to build our wild salmon business," said Tom Sunderland, vice president of marketing with Ocean Beauty Seafoods.
Editorial Comment: The availability of feedlot salmon to Ocean Beauty Seafoods does not benefit wild Alaska salmon. It does financially benefit those working in the salmon feedlot industry
Wild salmon accounts for less than one-third of U.S. fresh and frozen salmon consumption, while farmed Atlantic salmon production has grown dramatically in recent years, according to a report released this spring titled "Trends in Alaska and World Salmon Markets" by Gunnar Knapp with the Institute of Social and Economic Research with the University of Alaska Anchorage. But while farmed fish prices impact wild fish prices, as was seen when farmed fish prices fell in the 1990s, they also opened up the market.
World demand for salmon grew significantly after 2002 at the same time as farmed salmon production declined due to disease. The prices of both farmed and wild fish steadily rose since then. Meanwhile, programs aimed at educating consumers about the difference between wild fish and farmed fish have had an impact, particularly in the Pacific Northwest. Fritz Johnson, speaking as a fishermen in Bristol Bay since 1979, but who also works at Bristol Bay Economic Development Corporation and was recently appointed to the Alaska Board of Fisheries, said Alaska wild salmon are a small part of the world salmon market. And, he said, the more people who are interested in salmon, the better. "It isn't so much competing with those two means of production, what we are competing with is chicken and pork," Johnson said. "I think farmed salmon production has increased wild salmon consumption." Mike Friccero, a Bristol Bay fisherman for 30 years, who also has ties to Ocean Beauty Seafoods as both a general contractor and a fisherman, said he sees overall consumption of farmed fish leading to increased consumption of fish worldwide. "Once you have people eating salmon, you can educate them," he said. "There was a time when nobody knew the difference between a pink and a sockeye. There was no consumer awareness." Friccero said while concerns about accurately labeling salmon products as farmed or wild as well as accurate descriptions on menus continue to be a concern, having Ocean Beauty Seafoods selling farmed fish is not a worry to him. "We are better off side by side with lots of salmon," he said, pointing to recent record prices for wild sockeye salmon despite quite small runs. Sunderland with Ocean Beauty Seafoods said that markets — grocery stores for example — ask for a complete line of fish products. If the company only sold wild salmon products, they would likely lose part of the market share. But that's not to say they don't take their wild salmon products seriously. "We stand behind our wild fish," Sunderland said. "We produce the single biggest smoked salmon product in retail which is a wild sockeye product." Norm Van Vactor, the newly positioned Chief Executive Officer of the Bristol Bay Economic Development Corporation, said Ocean Beauty is a successful and well-run company with a broad range of products. "Farmed salmon is probably just one of the many product forms of non-Alaska wild products that they distribute that at the end of the day help sell what we catch in our back yard," he said in an email. "As a company they are first and foremost focused on wild Alaskan salmon and their ownership partners are proud of that fact." The institute report by Knapp echoed much of what industry said regarding the mutually beneficial nature of farmed and wild salmon, but that is given the current circumstances, it warned. The potential remains for farmed salmon supply growth to exceed demand growth, glutting the markets and depressing prices as has happened in the past, the report noted.
energy and mines minister in Ottawa to discuss proposed New Prosperity mine January 14, 2014
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems B.C.’s Minister of Energy and Mines Bill Bennett has met with the federal government to support Taseko Mines’ proposed $1.5 billion New Prosperity mine in the Cariboo region. At a meeting in Ottawa Monday, Bennett urged his federal colleagues to recognize the economic and social benefits the project would create for the local communities, according to a news release Tuesday from the provincial government. The controversial proposal, an open pit gold and copper mine near Williams Lake, still requires the approval of both the federal and provincial governments to proceed. Bennett’s push for the project follows a second review in November by a federal environmental assessment panel, which found serious flaws in Taseko’s revised proposal. The panel determined the mine, which would cover 27 square kilometres in the Fish Creek watershed, would result in the total loss of Little Fish Lake to a tailings storage facility. Taseko had revised its initial proposal for the mine, 125 kilometres southwest of Williams Lake, after its first proposal was rejected by the assessment agency in 2010. The company, meanwhile, claims the panel used incorrect information for its final assessment. Taseko said in letters to both the assessment agency and federal Environment Minister Leona Aglukkaq that Natural Resources Canada assumed the tailings storage would be placed on the ground, instead of on an engineered liner. Bennett told the B.C. Chamber of Commerce in December that he planned to go to Ottawa to “seek to influence the decision” on New Prosperity. He said it wouldn’t be appropriate to meet with Aglukkaq because she is the statutory decision maker, but that he intended to press his point with others at Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s cabinet table, including Natural Resources Minister Joe Oliver, Aboriginal Affairs Minister Bernard Valcourt and Labour Minister Kellie Leitch. During public hearings in August, the panel heard that the area is used by Tsilhqot’in and Secwepemc communities for hunting, trapping, fishing and for carrying out ceremonial and spiritual practices. Aglukkaq is expected to make a decision on New Prosperity in March. If she rejects the mine, then cabinet will have to weigh in on whether the project is justified. Bennett was in Toronto on Tuesday to open the Toronto Stock Exchange and ring in 2014. He said this year marks the start of two new mines in B.C.: Red Chris, a $500-million copper and gold mine south of Dease Lake, which will provide 750 full time jobs; And Roman, a $340-million coal mine near Tumbler Ridge, adding 375 full time jobs. B.C. has 19 operating mines, nine coal and 10 metal.
US woman sues Canadian mining titan Teck over toxins, disease December 21, 2013
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems VANCOUVER – A Washington state woman has filed a class-action lawsuit against Teck Resources (TSX:TCK.B), claiming toxic pollutants from the company’s smelter in southeastern British Columbia are to blame for her breast cancer diagnosis and other health ailments. Barbara Anderson is a longtime resident of Northport, Wash., a small community about 30 kilometres south of Teck’s lead and zinc smelter in Trail. The lawsuit filed in the Eastern District Court says Anderson was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2012 and inflammatory bowel disease in 2010. Says the claim, filed Thursday: Teck negligently, carelessly and recklessly generated, handled, stored, treated, disposed of and failed to control and contain the metals and other toxic substances at the Trail smelter, resulting in the release of toxic substances and exposure of plaintiff and the proposed class. US government, aboriginal group sue for $1 Billion in clean-up costs The smelter has been in operation under various ownership since 1896. Last year, the Vancouverbased mining giant admitted in another lawsuit brought by the Colville Confederated Tribes that effluent from the smelter polluted the Columbia River in Washington for more than a century. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency eventually joined that lawsuit and wants Teck to pay the estimated $1-billion cost of cleaning up the contamination. The latest lawsuit claims that between 1930 and 1995, the smelter discharged into the Columbia River at least 9 million tonnes of slag containing zinc, lead, copper, arsenic cadmium, barium, antimony, chromium, cobalt, manganese, nickel, selenium and titanium. “This discharge was intentional and made with knowledge that the waste slag contained metals,” says the complaint. Teck has spent more than a billion dollars on improvements to the Trail operation. Today, the company says, metals from the smelter are lower than levels that occur naturally in the river. The company has also spent millions remediating the area in and around Trail following decades of industry, but the company said the international border complicates the issues. Recent toxic release Though the discharges were meant to end in 1996, the suit claims there have been numerous unintentional releases since then, most recently in March 2011, when 350,000 litres of caustic effluent went into the river. A 2012 study by the Washington Department of Ecology found elevated levels of lead, antimony, mercury, zinc, cadmium and arsenic in soil, lakes and wetlands downriver from the plant, the lawsuit claims. And another study, concluded this summer by the Crohn’s and Colitis Centre at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, found that among 119 current and former residents of Northport, there were 17 cases of ulcerative colitis or Crohn’s disease — a rate 10 to 15 times higher than expected in a population of that size.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems The lawsuit also says the smelter released 123 tonnes of mercury into the air from 1926 to 2005, and discharged at least 180 tonnes into the river in that time. Complaints go back 70 years Complaints south of the border about the contamination from the Trail smelter surfaced as early as the 1940s, when farmers from Washington state sued Cominco, Teck’s predecessor, over air pollution. That case was eventually resolved in arbitration by the two federal governments and set a precedent for cross-border pollution law. Anderson and potentially others who could form part of a class-action, if approved, “have suffered a personal injury as a result of Teck’s wrongful conduct in violation of federal common law, nuisance, and Washington negligence and strict liability laws,” the claim says. The suit asks the court for a declaration that the Trail smelter is “a public nuisance and an abnormally dangerous activity.” Teck releases and has released hazardous and toxic substances, which create a high risk of significant harm…Teck has known or should have known about the potential health, safety and environmental dangers these substances pose to the public. The company has a duty to prevent injury, it says. The allegations in the lawsuit have not been proven in court. Teck has yet to be served with the lawsuit and file a response with the court. “It’s possible that this could take a long time,” Barbara Mahoney, Anderson’s lawyer, said Friday.
Drillers at Pebble. Source: Northern Dynasty Minerals
Northern Dynasty Has One Foot in the Grave December 24, 2013
Legacy â€“ February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 â€“ Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems Just over a week after Northern Dynasty Minerals (NYSEMKT: NAK ) announced it had regained full control over its controversial copper and gold Pebble mine in Alaska following its partner's decision to back out of the project, the miner found out its largest investor was also considering dumping the near-20% stake it held in the company. Rio Tinto (NYSE: RIO ) said it told Northern Dynasty's management "it intends to undertake a strategic review, including a possible divestment," a decision that took the miner unawares since Rio had apparently been telling Northern something different up till then. Considering Rio's stake is a relatively inconsequential amount, just $25 million in what is otherwise a $100 billion company, Northern Dynasty's CEO Ron Thiessen said the public disclosure of the review caught him by "complete surprise". A few years back, when there was a lot more hope surrounding the project's advance, Northern Dynasty put its then-50% ownership of Pebble on the block, hoping it would getbought out as it really needs a mining major to bring it to fruition -- but it couldn't find any takers. Thus relying on little more than dogged determinism to see it through, Northern Dynasty has run into one hurdle after another, and each successive one seemingly higher than the last. At a time when miners everywhere are trying to conserve capital by focusing on their most promising projects, quixotic campaigns like Pebble are increasingly difficult to justify. Anglo American pulled out of the project last week and tolled what seemed to be the death knell, though Northern Dynasty put up a bold front by saying it was looking forward to triggering federal and state permitting in the first quarter of 2014. The latest development from Rio Tinto suggests the grave has been dug for this project and Northern Dynasty has one foot in it. Located on Bristol Bay at the headwaters of a major spawning ground that sees 40 million salmon swim in every year, Pebble is the single largest undeveloped copper-gold-molybdenum deposit in the world, with the potential to produce as much as 55 billion pounds of copper, 67 million ounces of gold, and 3.3 billion pounds of molybdenum over its near-80-year life. It would create some 4,700 jobs in Alaska during construction and another 2,900 over a 30-year production cycle while adding some $2.4 billion annually to the economy and $9 billion in new state and federal tax revenues. But because of its location on sensitive environmental areas, opponents, including local people as well as environmentalists and a diverse roster of corporations, fear it would create catastrophic harm to fish, bear, moose, and caribou populations. The EPA has all but said it officially opposes its development, so Northern Dynasty's optimistic target dates for permitting seem overly hopeful. Rio Tinto is already under pressure to bring its costs under control, and last week received a letter from California's state controller and New York City's comptroller urging the miner to divest its holdings of Northern Dynasty. The two offices control hundreds of billions of investment dollars and cited their own large holdings in Rio when pointing out the environmental, regulatory, and, perhaps more importantly, reputational risks the miner faces in moving forward. That suggests Rio Tinto won't have an easy time unloading its stake too. As Pebble becomes a mining community pariah, there are few majors that are willing to step up and risk their own corporate images on it, making it seem all but certain Northern Dynasty is dead and about to be buried.
Wild fish management
Petitioning The Scottish Government: Remove Commercial Nets The Scottish Government: To reverse the decision by the Salmon Net Fishing Association of Scotland [SNFAS] to resume net fishing in the spring after a 14 year voluntary cessation. 1. Wild Salmon numbers are at an all time low, particularly fish entering our rivers in spring. The voluntary agreement above along with Catch and Release by anglers has seen this particular group of fish , at best, “hold their own”! To begin netting at this time of the year again would do irreparable damage to this early running group/cohort collectively known as spring fish. 2. If we have no fish entering our rivers in the early part of the year then many full time jobs will be threatened as revenue from those early anglers is lost. In 2003 "Salmon Angling" was found to be worth £74 Million to the Scottish economy, supporting 2800 full time jobs, mainly in rural areas with extremely fragile economies. A shorter season will see those full time jobs become part time, attracting, not young families, but older people to do a seasonal job. 3. The support industry we have for salmon fishing in Scotland would also suffer; from tackle shops, to tea shops. Petrol stations, hotels, guest houses, B&Bs and not forgetting all their suppliers! Although we have no new figures, to the Scottish Economy, salmon fishing will now be worth around double that of the figure above
doesn’t just shrink fish populations—they often don’t recover
afterwards January 13, 2014 Thanks to surging demand for seafood and woefully inaccurate catch reporting, overfishing is out of control. And new research now argues (paywall) that it’s a problem that, in many ecosystems, might be permanent. By removing one of its species, overfishing “flips” an ecosystem into an “alternative state,” explains the University of Maine’s Robert Steneck, one of the report’s authors. It sets off a complex reshuffling among remaining species. Often, this “locks” the ecosystem into a “alternative stable state”— meaning, the species of fish can’t come back. This could have devastating implications for the world’s food supply. “Ecosystem flips and locks that convert the ocean to a bacterial soup that favors jellyfish rather than finfish will not sustain the protein we need to feed the 9 [billion to] 11 billion people expected to show up on Earth over the coming decades,” says Mary Power, of the University of California, Berkeley, who co-authored the study. Here are some examples: The Maine sea urchin’s boom and bust In the 1980s, overfishing crashed the population of the North Atlantic’s once plentiful cod. Without cod to eat them, sea urchin populations exploded.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems From millions of tons of sardines to 12 million tons of jellyfish The Benguela ecosystem, off Namibia’s coast, once teemed with sardines and anchovy. Since those little guys are packed with protein, they fed bigger animals like sharks and sea mammals. Their abundance made Benguela among the most aggressively fished ecosystems in the world—such that, by the late 1990s, there were hardly any sardines or anchovies left. Plankton exploded, stripping oxygen from the water. Enter the jellyfish, one of the only creatures that thrives in “anoxic” conditions. Sardines and anchovies had once kept jellyfish populations in check by gobbling up plankton, which jellyfish also eat. Worse, jellyfish also fed on the eggs of the remaining sardine and anchovy population. That’s why, by 2006, the northern Benguela waters teemed with 12.2 million tons of jellyfish—and just 3.6 million tons of fish. In turn, populations of penguins and cap gannets, which ate primarily sardines and anchovies, plummeted by 77% and 94%, respectively.
Not enough fish Why does this keep happening? Steneck cites an increasingly industrial fishing industry—and blissfully unaware consumers. “What we have today are multinational fleets of ‘roving bandits’ that conduct serial depletions and move to more productive grounds,” he says. “People in the US are insulated from the reality of overfishing by seeing fish well stocked in their grocery stores.”
fishermen demand end to plan to protect waters around Cocos
Island Environmentalists say the fishermen's legal action aims to thwart plans to protect some of Costa Rica's most prized marine wildlife. December 20, 2013 The National Chamber of Longline Industries (CNIP) earlier this month filed litigation to annul the approval of a conservation project aimed at protecting marine resources in the country's Pacific waters. The most important area that the project would protect surrounds Cocos Island, one of Costa Rica's most famous natural landmarks. The plan was outlined by the National System of Conservation Areas (SINAC) and would establish standards for regulating activities around the island, including sport fishing and commercial fishing in a reduced area, research and tourism. But fishermen claim the project creates a new protected area, reducing the area in which they would be allowed to fish, “the main source of income for more than 2,500 fishermen who work on some 500 boats in the Pacific region,” according to CNIP Executive Director Mauricio González.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems The project, the Marine Area for Management of Undersea Mountains, was approved in 2011 by President Laura Chinchilla and the Environment Ministry (MINAE). For the past two years, officials from MINAE and SINAC, environmental groups and fishing representatives outlined recommendations for the management plan, which was finally approved this year at a cost of $150,000. One of the most important measures in the plan is the creation of a marine protected area of 9,642 square kilometers surrounding Cocos Island, which includes undersea mountains. The protected area would become the country's largest, and the second largest in the tropical Pacific, after Galápagos National Park in Ecuador. The final draft of the plan, presented at a meeting in May by the Center for Environmental Law and Natural Resources, would reduce by 60 percent the area where longline fishermen would be allowed to operate, González said. "We participated in at least four previous meetings with government officials. ... The only proposal they presented was one for establishing a regulated fishing area, with preventive measures to ensure the sustainability of marine resources," he said. "They never mentioned a marine protected area, with full fishing exclusion measures." He also said the plan has a number of irregularities, such as not including opinions from the Costa Rican Fisheries Institute, or Incopesca. Incopesca is the government agency responsible for overseeing the fishing industry in the country, and its opinions should be mandatory, Gonzaléz said. Conservationists for years have said Incopesca needs to be reformed, as it serves as both a regulatory agency and a special interest group. Gonzaléz said that during initial meetings, longline fishermen presented Vice Minister of Water and Oceans José Lino Chaves with observations and recommendations, but that "pretty much all of them were rejected in the final draft of the [management] plan." CNIP also claimed that they requested a meeting to be informed about the plan's details, but Chaves and Cocos Island Conservation Area Executive Secretary Fernando Quirós ignored the request. Quirós on Friday confirmed that CNIP's complaint was received on Dec. 9 and is being reviewed by SINAC's legal department. For that reason, he said, the agency cannot discuss the chamber's allegations. Marine species unprotected Zdenka Piskulich, executive director of the environmental group Costa Rica Por Siempre - one of the drafters of the management plan - said the lawsuit filed by CNIP means that at least 13,500 species of sharks, sea turtles, dolphins, grouper and tuna, among other fish, would be left unprotected.
"These species use the waters of this area as a migration route as well as feeding and breeding sites," she said. Piskulich said Incopesca was invited to participate in meetings for the plan, but its representatives did not attend all of them. “That was their prerogative; they were invited,” she said. Incopesca was part of a technical committee during the drafting process, as were representatives of the Environment Ministry and fishing groups from the Pacific province of Puntarenas. The longline fishing sector also participated in consultation sessions, Piskulich said. "This plan is a valuable tool that provides essential guidelines for planning, regulating and managing the area. ... But it also benefits fishermen because it ensures the sustainability of all marine resources in the area," she said. Referring to the fishermen’s claim about the reduction of the fishing area, Piskulich said the exclusion zone covers 36 percent of the marine management area, but this represents just 0.6 percent of Costa Rica's Exclusive Economic Zone. Longline fishermen also said that during the final presentation in May, the Center for Environmental Law and Natural Resources did not provide documentation to justify the fishing ban in that large swath of protected area. "Our fishing practices are conducted mostly on the ocean’s surface, we do not affect the seabed like trawling does," González said. "No one has shown us any study demonstrating that we are affecting marine resources." But conservation groups say CNIP's claims are an example of double standards, as pointed out by Marco Quesada, executive director of Conservation International in Costa Rica. "They only aim at hampering the government's plans to make the [Marine Area for Management of Undersea Mountains] a global example in marine conservation and sustainable use of resources," he said. Piskulich added that environmental groups do not understand CNIP’s position. "On one hand they advocate for sustainable fishing and demand exclusivity for tuna fishing using government fuel subsidies. But on the other they disapprove of all national efforts at conservation, in which they participated and in which their requests were considered." She added that the plan establishes that current Pacific fishing chambers will be the only ones authorized to fish within the Marine Area for Management of Undersea Mountains. Fernando Quirós, who also is a member of SINAC’s council, said they already informed CNIP representatives that they will hold a hearing on Jan. 7 during which fishermen can present reasons for their annulment request. Until then, the measures and provisions of the management plan cannot be implemented.
Gone: Proposed Fish Protection Could Shut Down Popular Fishing
Spot January 10, 2014 Fish and Wildlife’s spiel about gene pools and diversity is just one big fish story, Lewis County anglers said, loudly, during a Thursday meeting at Centralia College. The approximately 140 fishermen attended the meeting to protest the closure of the Toutle fish hatchery, which sits in the North Fork Toutle/Green River watershed in Cowlitz County. Fishermen on that river are allowed two hatchery steelhead per day in season, but are prohibited from catching natural steelhead, according to state regulations. The hatchery historically has supplied 25,000 fish per year, and closure of the hatchery would virtually end fishing at the popular spot. But, biologist Bryce Glaser said Thursday, Fish and Wildlife must take action to protect fish throughout the Lower Columbia River region. The North Fork Toutle is one of two tributaries of the Lower Columbia recently proposed as a location for a wild steelhead “gene bank,” or an area where wild fish populate, without the influence of hatchery fish. According to Glaser, large groups of hatchery fish have led to interbreeding, which in turn has led to reduced fitness and the decreased ability of offspring to survive to the next generation. Gene banks are intended to mitigate those effects. While gene banks may harm recreational fishing in the short term, they have the potential for impressive long term benefits, Fish and Wildlife’s Columbia River Policy Manager Cindy Le Fleur said.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems “The ultimate goal is to have enough fish that you could actually catch one and take it home,” she said, after the meeting. Following a series of public meetings, Fish and Wildlife created citizen advisory work groups. Working in conjunction with the three advisory groups, fishery managers identified three rivers as candidates for designation as gene banks in the Lower Columbia River. After consideration, the groups narrowed it down to two: the Toutle and the Coweeman. Benefits to building the bank on the Toutle included the river’s comparatively limited public access and the chance for Fish and Wildlife to cease operation of the Toutle weir, the group wrote. Drawbacks include the loss of fall fishing and reduced opportunity at a popular harvest fishery. The group also voiced concern about the unknown effect of climate change and potential mining operations from Mt. Saint Helens. Ultimately, the group recommended the Toutle as the gene bank location — a decision that is not yet final. According to Glaser, the Lower Columbia steelhead hatchery programs also are under a separate review, conducted by an outside consultant. As such, Fish and Wildlife has accelerated the pace of its gene bank review to align with the hatchery review. “Part of this is the need to decide on where gene banks will be established, because that’s going to determine which places have hatchery fish and which ones don’t,” he said. “It’s forced us to accelerate the gene bank process and decide where we want to put these gene banks before we complete the overall management process.” The majority of the attendees who spoke at Thursday’s meeting, voiced their opposition to a Toutle gene bank. “Look around at our neighbors, look at Idaho or Oregon, the fisheries in those states are flourishing, while we continue to watch ours go down the tube,” Bill Thurston, who lives on the Cowlitz River, said. “We’re here because we’re sportsmen, commercial fishermen and guides. For a variety of reasons our opportunities keep shrinking, and it seems there isn’t a damn thing we can do about it. You’re letting it happen — you’re almost encouraging it.” Jason Small, also a self-described sportsman, disagreed. After careful research, Small believes gene banks are necessary, he said. “I wish the opposite was true. I love going out in the woods, and bringing dinner home to my family. If science indicated rivers full of hatchery fish were the solution to sustaining wild runs I’d be all for them, but that’s not the case,” he said. “My sons are the reason I’m here. My wife and I are doing our best to raise them to respect and appreciate the wild places that are around them,” he went on. “If we let these fish that are an icon of the pacific northwest disappear, we lose that connection with the wild, and we completely fail the next generation. I don’t want to be a part of that.” Le Fleur said Fish and Wildlife has not determined when it will make its final decision.
Motorized boats stir up problems for BC’s salmon rivers December 30, 2013 Two distinct pieces of federal legislation govern activities in and on our rivers, lakes and coastal waters: 1) The Canada Shipping Act, concerning the waterway surface and the protection navigation rights; 2) The Fisheries Act, pertaining to protection of the marine habitat, below the surface of these same waters. But while they apply to the same waters, on and below the surface respectively, the two Acts do not connect. In other words, under the current legislative framework, one cannot impose restrictions on certain types of motorized boats based on their impacts on the marine habitat. In effect, regardless of the variances in environmental and community challenges from one waterway to another, the legislative challenges are the same, leaving communities across Canada without the means to protect their respective local environments and community interests.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems BC’s ecologically sensitive salmon rivers left unprotected Over the past 3 decades, there has been a dramatic increase in the number of recreational boaters on BC’s waterways. Gone are the days when the only boat one would see was the occasional fisherman in his “tinny” with a small outboard motor. Across the province, lakes and rivers, big and small, are now accessed by an increasing number of bigger, faster and much more powerful boats. Recreation in BC is big business. While the increased congestion on BC’s large lakes creates numerous safety concerns, it is on the smaller lakes and rivers that the harmful environmental effects are most evident. Studies dating back to the 1950′s (Lagler et al) identified the harmful effects of boat-caused erosion and sedimentation on aquatic plants and animals. Lagler found that prolonged use of an outboard in 75 centimetre deep water, and a propeller 35 centimetres from the bottom, removed all plants and silt from a swath 1.5 metres wide. In the ensuing six decades, study after study in the US and Canada have indicated that operating a boat in water less than 2 metres deep damages the aquatic ecosystem. The erosive effects of boat wakes are also well-documented. In studies too numerous to mention, boat wakes have been shown to cause shoreline erosion and disturbance to aquatic mammals and nesting waterfowl while boat noise chases waterfowl from their nests. These disturbances devour the birds’ scarce resources and can lead to a serious long-term decline in waterfowl.
BC is blessed with hundreds of salmon-bearing rivers and streams. Hundreds of thousands of salmon fry live suspended in these shallow waters before making their way to the Pacific Ocean. With the advent of jet boat technology, high-powered aluminum hulled boats can travel at high speeds in these extremely shallow and ecologically sensitive marine environments. One BC boat manufacturer has a model called “Extreme Shallow” designed for “skinny water” fun and boasts it can operate in just 5 inches of water. The impellers of these jet boats can pump as much as 3000 to 4000 gallons of water a minute. The result? Salmon fry, and the aquatic insects that are their food supply, are crushed or washed ashore by these powerful forces. Similar impacts are associated with other types of motorized watercraft that generate wakes in these highly environmentally fragile salmon-bearing rivers.
Nevertheless, though all this evidence in studies dates back more than 60 years, communities remain powerless to do something about this in the absence of a modern legislative framework.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems While Transport Canada’s safe boating guide states that a 10 kph speed should be observed if less than 30 metres from shore, these common-sense guidelines do not apply to our rivers, where the 30 metre rule would effectively restrict boats to a no-wake speed on most inland rivers and streams. Legislative framework hinders constructive solutions The Canada Shipping Act, administered by Transport Canada, ensures that there are no impediments to navigation and that marine transportation is conducted in a safe manner. Not only is the Act ill-suited and not intended for protection of the environment, but also Transport Canada requires that all non-regulatory options be explored before a municipality can proceed with a request for a regulatory solution. In this regard, Transport Canada strongly encourages communities to adopt a voluntary code of conduct with near 100% adherence. This latter requirement is a source of irresolvable conflicts across Canada because few communities can achieve the necessary level of voluntary support for the code of conduct to be effective. Accordingly, municipal governments and community organizations across Canada have been unable or unwilling to tackle this issue, anticipating a complicated and potentially controversial process that can take years while, all too often, pitting neighbour against neighbour in what may seem like a never ending ordeal. The second piece of legislation, the Fisheries Act, administered by Dept. of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) was created in 1867 and remains one of Canada’s oldest existing pieces of legislation. While its mandate is to conserve and protect fisheries resources in all Canadian waterways by protecting the marine habitat, the current government has rendered the Act an empty shell, at the request of the pipeline industry. Moreover, recent DFO enforcement changes include the reduction of DFO staffing to levels last seen in the 1980′s and the removal of the term “Habitat Management Program” from their organization and offices. DFO offices are being closed across the country and habitat protection staff are being laid off. The confluence of massive new industrial development and severe cuts to staff, can and will surely, harm habitat and fisheries of the future. There is no will presently within DFO to take the action required to protect our waterways from harm caused by recreational boats. Suffice to say that: 1) neither of the two Acts were designed to address the current pressures that recreational boating poses for communities across the country; 2) the Fisheries Act is now so weakened that it has to be re-written, practically starting from the equivalent of a blank page; and 3) the two Acts must be linked in order to protect the marine habitat via restrictions on certain types of boating activity.
Editorial Comment: Wild salmon and trout are keystone species that require significant conservation measures to ensure that their robust populations and their fragile ecosystems remain healthy an intact. Alaska strictly limits speed and horsepower on fragile rivers – with some rivers allowing only non-motorized boats..
rock drainage from Okanagan highway threatens ‘world’s richest’ wild trout stream January 5, 2014
Dignitaries described the $225-million Okanagan Connector, Highway 97C, as an important new conduit for commercial and industrial activity when it officially opened in 1990. What they didn’t say — or knew — is that for decades to come the highway would become the source of an acidic stew of toxic metals emptying into the headwaters of Pennask Creek, described as the world’s greatest spawning site for wild rainbow trout. It is so rich that one million eggs are taken from trout in the creek each spring and reared in hatcheries, then used to stock some 110 lakes around the province — more than any other single source. The province has already spent millions to reduce the environmental impact — helping to ensure a healthy spawn downstream of 25,000 trout this year — but acknowledges that current remediation is falling short and more needs to be done.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems “(Pennask Creek is) the cornerstone of the B.C. lake-stocking program,” confirmed Tim Yesaki, vicepresident of operations with the Freshwater Fisheries Society of B.C., which collects the Pennask trout eggs for restocking lakes across B.C. When construction crews began to build the Okanagan Connector, they unwittingly exposed pyritebearing rocks near Pennask Summit to air and water, thereby triggering the process of acid-rock drainage, or ARD. ARD poses a threat to fish and aquatic life through acidification of the water and elevated concentrations of sulphate and metals such as iron, zinc, cadmium, copper, and aluminum. The problem is more commonly associated with mine sites. The best-known local example is Britannia copper mine, a national historic site on the Sea to Sky Highway where a $27-million treatment plant officially opened in 2006. Under a public-private partnership, EPCOR Water Treatment Services built the plant and last year received $720,000 in operating costs from the province. It has been so successful that pink salmon now spawn there. The B.C. government told The Vancouver Sun it is aware of water-treatment systems installed, or about to be installed, at 13 other mine sites (all but two closed) across the province. The costs of these operations are borne by the mining companies. At least one other continues to pollute the environment with no treatment facility at all. Ministry of Energy and Mines spokesman Jake Jacobs confirmed that the abandoned Anyox copper mine, on Observatory Inlet, about 160 kilometres north of Prince Rupert, is leaching “untreated acidic drainage with elevated levels of some metals.” Active until 1935, the mine pre-dates “any legislation and best practices related to environmental protection and reclamation,” he said, adding that “at this time we have no reason to believe there are significant impacts occurring.” Acid rock drainage on the Okanagan Connector could not have occurred at a worse site — draining into so-called Highway Creek, a tributary of Pennask Creek, which flows into Pennask Lake. The site is about midway between Merritt and Peachland. Although remarkable for its productivity, the Pennask watershed is not widely known to the public. Public access to Pennask Lake is difficult, via a rough, four-wheel-drive road to a 244-hectare provincial park at the southeast corner of the lake. The rest of the shoreline is privately owned. Pennask Creek is a 1,245-hectare provincial protected area created in 2001 to protect an internationally significant rainbow trout brood fishery. A highways district manager at the time described the creek as “the richest rainbow trout spawning creek in the world.” Today, the Ministry of Forests, Lands, and Natural Resource Operations, describes the creek thus: “The Pennask rainbow trout run is one of the largest — if not the largest — of its kind in the world.” The province has discovered that polluting a creek with those sorts of credentials doesn’t come cheap.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems In 2005, the Ministry of Transportation pleaded guilty to two federal Fisheries Act counts of depositing a deleterious substance into Pennask Creek. Elevated levels of aluminum, copper and zinc were found. The province was fined $1,000 and ordered to pay $45,000 to the Environmental Damages Fund for use in creek rehabilitation. In response, the province installed a treatment system consisting of two acid-mine drainage machines to raise pH levels (neutralizing acid levels) and remove metals, constructed lined channels and reservoirs to capture water and then treat it with lime, and drilled monitoring wells to provide water-quality information. To date, the government has spent $4 million on mitigation measures, with more to come. Transportation ministry spokeswoman Kate Trotter said the province has just hired Golder Associates on a $150,000 contract to offer expertise in acid-rock drainage and metal leachate and to develop a more permanent plan for the site. The ministry continues to “research long-term solution options,” appreciating it can take a “very long time” for acid rain drainage to naturally diminish and that “we are committed to long-term maintenance of the site,” Trotter said. The action follows a November 2011 report by consultants CH2M HILL Canada that concluded “mitigation measures at Pennask Creek have not produced the desired results in terms of reducing acid rock and metal concentration impacts to aquatic life.” It also found that not all toxic waters were being contained and treated due to rips in a “geomembrane liner,” that limestone placed in a ditch has not “produced desired neutralization” and that water treatment is “inconsistent and inadequate.” It also observed that the settlement pond provides “insufficient residence time” to separate precipitates from treated water during the freshet, and there is no redundancy to allow maintenance and repairs when the system experienced problems. “There are several components of the treatment system that are inadequate ...” it concluded. “In the absence of significant maintenance activities, the system will degrade over time with an associated reduction in water quality flowing downstream to Pennask Creek.” The dumping of inadequately treated sludge could also lead to a second source of acid rock drainage on Quilchena Creek. It recommended a phased, multi-year approach to remediation starting with a monitoring program, noting that location, chemistry and flow rates of contaminants will dictate treatment processes. Despite serious ongoing concerns, the creek had an excellent spawn of upwards of 25,000 trout this past spring, suggesting that acid rock drainage in the headwaters — so far, at least — has not compromised the overall productivity of the run farther downstream. That is not the only curiosity about this fish.
Legacy – February 2014 Wild Game Fish Conservation International 2014 – Year of Healthy Marine Ecosystems While the trout remain small — half to three-quarters of a pound due to the low productivity of Pennask Lake itself — once transplanted to a productive lake “they can grow to incredibly large sizes, five to seven pounds or bigger,” said Yesaki. “It’s amazing. And they have a solid reputation for jumping and fighting. That’s how B.C. gets its reputation for blue-ribbon lake rainbow fishing.” The key is the vast spawning habitat on Pennask Creek and the absence of other fish to compete with the trout. A 2010 master’s thesis by civil engineering student Lisa Walls of the University of B.C. concluded that while metal concentrations in the water and sediments “decreased markedly” since 2004 due to remediation efforts, concentration remains higher than elsewhere in the watershed. Concentrations of aluminum, copper, and zinc “consistently exceeded B.C. and Canadian water and sediment quality guideline values for the protection of aquatic life, indicating that adverse biological effects are probable at sites downstream ...” Monitoring of invertebrates in the stream bottom over a decade found “low abundance and diversity, and a complete absence of sensitive taxa at downstream sites” and the “likelihood of adverse biological effects for aquatic organisms, including rainbow trout, due to metal contamination in the watershed,” Walls concluded. Trotter said the ministry “recognizes the importance of the downstream fishery” but noted that monitoring for invertebrates at two Pennask Creek sites furthest downstream of Highway Creek and within the rainbow trout spawning area “showed no impact on abundance, species richness ... and composition” compared with a sample site upstream of Highway 97C. Although the province paid the price in court for its actions, Trotter asserted that “tests during construction in the 1980s did not reveal the potential for leachate” and that “today’s tests are now more sophisticated, reducing the risk of this happening elsewhere.” A 2007 geotechnical case study by Kevin Morin and Nora Hutt on Pennask Creek found that a substantial amount of surface and subsurface work had been done on water, soil, and rock around the rock cuts on the Okanagan Connector. There were no reports of acidic pH, acid-rock drainage, sulphide minerals, or metal coatings and stains. However, the rock cuts were not drilled or cored in advance, and there were no specific tests for acid rock drainage. Based on available information on the subject during road construction in the 1980s, they concluded that the ministry “had no reason to suspect the potential for ARD from the proposed rock cuts prior to highway construction.” Loretta Li, a professor in the department of civil engineering at the University of B.C., noted that B.C.’s Contaminated Sites Regulation did not take effect until 1997 and that the old ways of highway construction were based on economic sense and taking the nearest rock. “Now it would be very different, looking at the types of rocks in the surrounding areas and whether it has potential to generate acid ...” she said. “Soil is not just soil, it has different compositions.”
Conservation-minded businesses – please support these fine businesses
Welcome to Steelhead Girls! Our goal is to be every woman’s gear fishing, salmon and steelhead resource for the Pacific Northwest.
Riverman Guide Service – since 1969 Kim Malcom – Owner, Operator Licensed and Insured Guide Quality Float Trips – Western Washington Rivers – Steelhead, Salmon, Trout
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Martin Mc Gowan’s: A Kerry Fishing Guide
Guided Angling Trips Martin Mc Gowan Failte Ireland Approved Angling Guide Untapped is the word that jumps to mind when talking of Ireland's shore fishing. It is simply sublime with a whole range of species to be caught from quiet beaches to hidden coves. We will tailor our guiding package to suit you the angler; whether it is guiding you to the best fishing hot spots, or providing tuition for angling newcomers. We can also arrange bespoke packages for groups or the individual angler.
What I can do For You? I can help you find appropriate accommodation to best suit your needs. I will ensure that your lodgings' have been inspected by Failte Ireland/Regional Tourism Authority personnel and awarded a classification rating. I can also organize car rental for you, and take care of any other specific requests you may have. I can also arrange corporate event packages, transition year and youth angling workshops. If you have any questions or require further assistance, please e-mail me through the 'Contact' us page, or firstname.lastname@example.org
All Guiding Packages Include:
Transport from your accommodation to the fishing area in the mornings and return in the evenings if requested.
Fishing tackle hire. Digital photos of you and your catch will be supplied and emailed to you. I can arrange for your catch to be cooked by a professional chef in local restaurant for you to enjoy.
or groups are catered for. I am happy to offer advice for non-fishing guests on other activities available
Ricky’s All Day Grill “Satisfy your hunger…and your wallet”
Satisfy your hunger…and your wallet For over 50 years we’ve been serving up great food at great prices. All day, every day, we serve a medley of tasty selections in a comfortable, friendly environment that’s the perfect venue for catching up with friends and family, some one-on-one time with someone special, or larger groups. Plus, with nearly 70 locations across Canada we’re never far when you need us for breakfast, lunch or dinner. When you’re craving great food, great service and great value, you can count on Ricky’s All Day Grill. Your taste buds will thank you for it.
Just Sushi – World’s First 100% Sustainable Sushi Restaurant
Homestead Trophy Lodge & Kenai Peninsula Fishing
Welcome to Alaska's Homestead Trophy Lodge located in South Central Alaska on the Beautiful Kenai Peninsula! Long known for its unmatched World Class Fishing, incredible beauty, and tremendous variety of wildlife! We are situated on a very unique 160 acre wilderness setting on Beaver Creek, and just minutes from Salmon Fishing on the world famous Kenai River. Our experienced resident guides at Kenai Peninsula Fishing are Fishing fanatics and are definitely some of the best Fisherman on the Kenai Peninsula. If you have just surfed in looking for the best of Alaska's Lodging, Salmon, Trout, and Halibut Fishing, then you have come to the right place. The Homestead Trophy Lodge is your best choice for the finest in Lodging & Alaska Fishing Adventures!
Maxwell Steelhead Guides
The Bulkley River is a major tributary of the world famous Skeena River system. From Houston to Hazelton, BC, it flows over eighty miles of fishable water. We fish many different areas of the river by jet boat, searching for fish. Jet boats are used for transportation only and fish are caught by wading and casting. The Maxwells have fished and guided on this river for over twenty years.
Typical Fishing Day…
Our fishing days are Sunday through Friday… 6 days …with Saturday as a turnover day. However, we are flexible and can accommodate anglers who wish to start on either Saturday or Monday, if we have the available space. Anglers should plan to arrive on or before Saturday (or their starting day) and be ready to start fishing the next morning. Please be aware that weekend flights may be booked and worse, it they are fully booked, your luggage may not arrive at the same time as you do! Licenses are not available from us. Licenses are available online and from the two fly shops in Smithers. However, please plan on having your license before you arrive. They can be purchased at… www.fishing.gov.bc.ca You need your Angler Number to purchase your licenses. If you haven’t fished in British Columbia before this system came into use, then you will be given an Angler Number. Keep it in a safe place. We will pick you up in the morning, typically between 7:00 – 8:00 AM and we should be on the water fishing by 9:00 AM… depends on how far we travel to put in the water. We provide shore lunches, coffee, soft drinks, juices, etc. If you have any special requests as to what you eat and drink, we will do our best to accommodate them. Feel free to bring snacks, drinks, etc. No liquor allowed on the river! We use state-of-the-art jet boats on the river for transportation only which gives us the ability to go upriver as well as downriver. We fish two (2) anglers per guide. The boats have lots of storage room, so bring extra clothes and fishing gear with you. Although the Bulkley River is a fishing and wading dream, we are concerned with the safety of our anglers, our boats and ourselves at all times. We will not go to dangerous areas or fish our anglers in water that is unsuitable for them. Our day lasts until 5:00 – 5:30 PM. Later in the season, we are off the water at 5:00 PM due to fading light conditions. We take you back to the motel at the end of the day where you can relax and choose your restaurant. If you plan to leave on the last day of fishing, please advise us early as this can cut short your fishing partner’s day or your own.
Anissa Reed Designs
Anissa Reed Designs
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Cabo Sails Watch Cabo Sails video HERE
Fishing the Rogue Guide Service
Winter Fishing on the Rogue River for Silver (Coho) Salmon and Steelhead
Attention Conservation-minded Business Owners Many businesses around planet earth rely on robust populations of wild game fish. This is true for fishing guide/charter services, resort and hotel owners, fishing tackle and boat retail stores, clothing stores, eco/photo tours, grocery stores, gas stations and many more. In fact, wild game fish are the backbone of a multi-billion dollar per year industry on a global scale. This is why we at Wild Game Fish Conservation International offer complimentary space in each issue of “LEGACY” for business owners who rely on wild game fish populations to sustain your business. An article with one or more photos about your business and how it relies on wild game fish may be submitted for publication to LEGACY PUBLISHER. Please include your business website and contact information to be published with your business article. Selected submissions will be published each month. Robust wild game fish populations and the opportunities to fish for them provide family wage jobs and balanced eco-systems while ensuring cultural values. They also provide a unique, natural resources-based lifestyle for those fortunate to have these magnificent creatures in our lives. Conservationists working together with the business community effectively protect and restore planet earth’s wild game fish for this and future generations to enjoy and appreciate. This is our LEGACY. WGFCI endorsed conservation organizations:
American Rivers LightHawk Native Fish Society Salmon and Trout Restoration Association of Conception Bay Central, Inc Save Our Salmon Sierra Club – Cascade Chapter Sportsman’s Alliance For Alaska Steelhead Society of British Columbia Wild Salmon First Wild Salmon Forever
Sara Stevenson Fine Art Northwest native, love the great outdoors. Enjoy hunting, fishing and art.
Dan Wallace: Commissioned engraving – strict attention to detail
Michelin - Fly Fishing Fine Art: Another yet untitled masterpiece inspired by a lifelong passion for nature and fly fishing
Welcome to Fly Fishing Fine Art , including original paintings , limited edition prints and commissions in fly fishing and angling themes, by Canadian watercolor artist Diane Michelin. Diane is anxious to capture the essence of fly fishing and record those memories that bring us back to the river. Her art is currently on display in museums, fly shops, lodges and private collections. Browse through the gallery, and contact Diane Michelin directly to discuss your purchase of fly fishing fine art.
Jeannie Williams Wallen: “Breaking Waves”
Layla Zoe: “Our Native Land” Watch, listen, learn HERE
Conservationist Extraordinaire – Walking the Talk
Sabra Woodworth, British Columbia Wild Salmon Tigress
Featured Fishing Photos, “Funnies” and Not so Funny:
Bryanna Zimmerman (Steelhead Girls) with a dandy, B-run steelhead
David Tejedor Royo: Extremadura Spain with a Spanish speaking Pike!!!
Gašper Konkolič - Fly Fishing Guiding Slovenia Gorgeous Sava River Brook Trout
Kyle McClelland: Michigan winter steelhead Owner, Guide, Vidoeographer: XXL Chrome Chasing
April Vokey: Windy Argentina Owner, guide, instructor: FlyGal Ventures Photo credit: Stephan Dombaj - Fly Fishing Nation
FlyGal Adventures: If it's a unique fly-fishing adventure you're looking for....Fly Gal is the company for you. We offer top notch guided fly fishing trips in world-class British Columbian fisheries complete with first rate guides and accommodations. Be it a corporate event or a private vacation, Fly Gal will help you to book the perfect trip. Flyfishing Nation: Flyfishing uncut through flyfishermens’ eyes. Even the most remote areas reveal their secrets if we can see it with the fishing eye. Please select a section. "Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines, sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover." Mark Twain
Kazumi Takizawa: Japanese Grouper
Alsea River – Nobody hurt – Boat was recovered – Lessoned learned?
Loading the Innovator took some practice and dialing in. After several attempts, Groesbeck determined that ideally the launching should be at low slack in the morning hours. Prior to launching, port and starboard levels of fuel tanks, bait tanks and fore and aft water tanks were adjusted to trim the mother ship to an 8° port list which compensated for the weight of the Innovator as the boat was lowered to the water from the starboard side.
Alexandra Morton: “Listening to Whales”
Watch orcas up close HERE
In Listening to Whales, Alexandra Morton shares spellbinding stories about her career in whale and dolphin research and what she has learned from and about these magnificent mammals. In the late 1970s, while working at Marineland in California, Alexandra pioneered the recording of orca sounds by dropping a hydrophone into the tank of two killer whales.
Terry Wiest: Float Fishing for Salmon and Steelhead
Video Library – conservation of wild game fish Aquaculture Piscine Reovirus in British Columbia: (14.36) Salmon Confidential: (69:15) The Fish Farm Fight; (6:51) Salmon Wars: Salmon Farms, Wild Fish and the Future of Communities (6:07) The Facts on Fish Farms (60:00+) “Algae culture fish farm” (6:40) Vegetarian Fish? A New Solution for Aquaculture (7:32) Everyone Loves Wild Salmon – Don’t They? - Alexandra Morton (2:53) Atlantic salmon feedlots - impacts to Pacific salmon (13:53) Farmed Salmon Exposed (22:59) Salmon farm diseases and sockeye (13:53) Shame Below the Waves (12:37) Occupy Vancouver, BC - Dr. Alexandra Morton (6:18) Farming the Seas (Steve Cowen) (55:53) Farming the Seas (PBS) (26:45) Cohen Commission – Introduction (9:52) Deadly virus found in wild Pacific salmon (1:57) A tribute by Dr. Alexandra Morton (5:35) Green Interview with Dr. Alexandra Morton (6:06) Closed containment salmon farms (8:15) Don Staniford on 'Secrets of Salmon Farming' (7:50) Greed of Feed: what’s feeding our cheap farmed salmon (10:37) Land-based, Closed-containment Aquaculture (3:14) Hydropower Undamming Elwha (26:46) Salmon: Running the Gauntlet - Snake River dams (50:08) Mining Pebble Mine: “No Means No” (1:15) Locals Oppose Proposed Pebble Mine (7:23) Oil: Extraction and transportation Tar Sands Oil Extraction: The Dirty Truth (11:39) Tar Sands: Oil Industry Above the Law? (1:42) SPOIL – Protecting BC’s Great Bear Rainforest from oil tanker spills (44:00) H2oil - A documentary about the Canadian tar sand oil (3:20) From Tar Sands to Tankers – the Battle to Stop Enbridge (14:58) Risking it All - Oil on our Coast (13:16) To The Last Drop: Canada’s Dirty Oil (22:31) Seafood safety Is your favorite seafood toxic? (6:06)