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#02-10-2013 - ComFish News Roundup

Public input builds on wastewaster legislation
Bill could reach Senate floor next week
Posted: February 8, 2013 - 12:09am
By RUSSELL STIGALL
JUNEAU EMPIRE
Two bills that change the water quality criteria used to measure cruise ship wastewater could see a Senate vote as early as next week. The House’s wastewater bill shot straight through the Senate’s committee gauntlet and landed next to its companion bill in the Senate Finance Committee by Thursday morning. House Bill 80 had recently passed a House reconsideration vote 27-10. Thursday morning in Senate Finance Committee, HB 80 was joined by Senate Bill 29 as the topic of public testimony. If passed, the act would sunset a science panel... http://juneauempire.com/state/2013-02-08/public-input-builds-wastewaster-legislation

Cruising clean within reach
If exemption bill passes, incentives evaporate
Posted: February 10, 2013 - 12:06am
By By KATE TROLL
In the rush to placate the desire of a profitable industry to end-run the requirement passed by voters in 2006 for large cruise ships to meet Alaska Water Quality Standards, many important facts and concerns are being ignored. Indeed, according to Michelle Ridgway, a professional marine ecologist who has over 30 years of experience researching undersea ecosystems and a member of the Scientific Advisory Panel appointed by Gov. Sean Parnell, the ‘fast track’ mode of the cruise ship wastewater legislation is allowing false.... http://juneauempire.com/opinion/2013-02-10/cruising-clean-within-reach

2/9/2013
Many solutions
A Ketchikan councilman had it partly right when he proposed sales tax adjustments this week. Matt Olsen, who felt the economic pain generated during the most recent city budget session, suggested that Ketchikan charge higher sales tax in the summer. The result would be that tourists would pay a higher amount to support city services. Of course, locals would be paying the higher tax then, too. But, after the summer tourist season, the sales tax would be decreased in concern for those living and trying to make ends meet in Ketchikan. This would mean a 4-percent tax in the summer and a 3-percent tax in the off season. Business leaders expressed several concerns about the idea: 1. It would deter locals from.... http://www.ketchikandailynews.com/free/local-weekend-edit-sales-taxes

Emotions run high over EPA's Bristol Bay watershed study
Margaret BaumanThe Cordova Times
February 9, 2013
A decision by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to further review and add to information gathered for the Bristol Bay watershed assessment is being greeted with disappointment and dismay by those opposed to a massive copper mine. Commercial Fishermen for Bristol Bay, a network of nearly 100 organizations that support fishermen and the industry that harvests Bristol Bay sockeye salmon, said this past week they are disappointed with the EPA's decision. The final document initially was scheduled for completion by year's.... http://www.alaskadispatch.com/article/emotions-run-high-over-epas-bristol-bay-watershed-study

SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 9, 2013
The salmon situation
University of Alaska Anchorage fisheries economist Gunnar Knapp last week gave legislators in Juneau an overview of world salmon trends. You can view the entire presentation here.... http://deckboss.blogspot.com/2013/02/the-salmon-situation.html

Due date narrows for octopus mom
By Heidi Zemach
For The LOG
Over the last ten months the giant Pacific octopus LuLu, a resident of Alaska SeaLife Center, has proven to be an attentive mother to the hundreds, or thousands, of eggs she laid last spring. She’s sucking water in through her mantle, and blowing it over them, and fanning it to give them plenty of oxygen and keep the water circulating. Day in and out she’s hovering over these pearly white curtains of rice-like eggs that hang off separate threads like grapes, rarely leaving them to feed herself. She’s visibly losing weight in the process. Any approaching starfish or aquarium personnel she aggressively pushes away with her long arms. Large rocks that she picked up, and with which she had hoped to barricade herself and her eggs behind, lie scattered below her on the tank floor. Meanwhile, scientists like ASLC Aquarium Curator Richard Hocking, and Aquarium Coordinator Jared Guthridge are carefully observing her behavior, and learning new things about.... http://www.thesewardphoenixlog.com/story/2013/02/07/local/due-date-narrows-for-octopus-mom/1105.html

Senior Chenault staffer calls Valdez gasline route 'crock of s--t'
Lee Revis
February 9, 2013
"What a crock of sh-t.”
Only the expletive was fully spelled out and sent directly to Valdez City Clerk Sheri Pierce from the official legislative email address of, Rep. Mike Chenault, Speaker of the House in the Alaska House of Representatives. The email was sent to Pierce in reply to an email Pierce sent to all legislators and Gov. Sean Parnell on behalf of Valdez Mayor Dave Cobb. The email contained an electronic copy of a hard copy letter Cobb sent to Parnell’s Juneau office regarding the All Alaska Gasline Project. “I was shocked to receive that,” Pierce said.... http://www.alaskadispatch.com/article/senior-chenault-staffer-calls-valdez-gasline-route-crock-s-t

Oregon program recycles salmon carcasses to put nutrients in streams
By The Associated Press
on February 09, 2013 at 4:40 PM
An Oregon marine program is being billed as "stream enrichment," but it's a lot smellier than it sounds.
That's because the program really comes down to dumping hundreds of excess hatchery fish carcasses into tributaries. It's a conservation program billed as a way to make up for the loss of marine-derived nutrients that get flushed from.... http://www.oregonlive.com/pacific-northwest-news/index.ssf/2013/02/oregon_program_recycles_salmon.html

War on the seabed: the shellfishing battle
In the fertile inshore waters of the west coast conflict is brewing between small-boat fishermen and the industrial trawlers, with tales of sabotage, bullying and livelihoods at stake
Alex Renton
The Observer, Saturday 9 February 2013
The trawler was a mass of battered metal looming high above our little boat, a great bucket of rust on the bright blue Hebridean sea. For two days last July we watched it plough up and down a shallow patch inshore, just where we'd been used to seeing a school of basking sharks feeding. But those had gone, and so had the seals that sunbathed on the nearby rocks. A clanking noise filled the air, broken kelp fronds were washing up.... http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2013/feb/10/scallop-wars-on-britains-west-coast