U.S. Coast Guard recovers boat of missing Canadian near Ocean Shores

The Coast Guard says a sailboat that was reported missing July 11 off of British Columbia was found capsized Thursday about five miles northwest of Ocean Shores.

There was no sign of 69-year-old Paul Clark, who sailed alone out of Prince Rupert, British Columbia, earlier in July on his way to Port Hardy, British Columbia.

A helicopter and Coast Guard vessels from Washington and Oregon searched for the Canadian for three hours without success.

The Coast Guard says a fishing vessel found his 16-foot sailboat. It’s being transferred to Canadian officials.

Clark was last seen in the vicinity of Aristazabal Island, about half-way through his planned trip. He was reported missing after he failed to check in with his family.

 

A U.S. Coast Guard boatcrew from Station Grays Harbor in Westport, Washington, recovered an unmanned boat about five miles northwest of Ocean Shores, Washington, Thursday.

The 16-foot non-motorized boat is believed to be that of Paul Clark, a 69-year-old Canadian citizen who left Prince Rupert, British Columbia, earlier this month on a solo sailing trip to Port Hardy, British Columbia. 

Clark was reported missing July 11 after he failed to check in with a family member. He was last seen in the vicinity of Aristazabal Island, British Columbia, about halfway to his intended destination.

The fishing vessel Tally Ho came across the capsized vessel and reported it to watchstanders at Station Grays Harbor around 7:30 a.m. Station crewmembers launched a 47-foot Motor Life Boat in response. 

Coast Guard Sector Columbia River watchstanders in Warrenton, Oregon, launched an MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew from Coast Guard Air Station Astoria, Oregon, and diverted the crew of Coast Guard Cutter Blue Shark, an 87-foot patrol boat homeported in Everett, Washington, to assist. A Washington State Department of Fish and Wildlife crew also responded.

The crews of the MLB and Blue Shark arrived on scene around 8:30 a.m. They overturned the vessel and found all oars and sails secured. Crewmembers found the identification of Paul Clark in the vessel.

Coast Guard boat and air crews searched the area for approximately three hours and found no signs of distress. The search was subsequently suspended pending any further information.

Coast Guard officials notified Joint Rescue Coordination Center Victoria, British Columbia, and are coordinating the transfer of the vessel to Canadian officials.

Imperium Renewables and Pacific Coast Canola sign contract for biofuel supply

HOQUIAM, Wash. –Imperium Renewables, one of the largest biodiesel manufacturers in the United States, has reached an agreement with Pacific Coast Canola (PCC) to purchaseregionally sourcedcanola oil for biodiesel production.
Pacific Coast Canola’s canola crushing plant in Warden, Wash., is the largest in the West. It began commercial operation in August of 2013 and has the capacity to produce at approximately 137,000 metric tons, or 40,000,000 gallons, of oil annually.
“This milestone agreement with PCC will help us fully realize the potential of renewable biofuels in Washington,” said Imperium CEO John Plaza.  “Canola grown by Pacific Northwest farmers will be processed by PCC and that oil will be made into biodiesel by Imperium at our Hoquiam refinery. This advanced biofuel will be shipped to consumers in the region and around the world. We have been pursuing this goal since 2004 and we are very excited to be working with PCC to see this vision through.”
The agreement will provide a reliable and diversified market for a portion of PCC’s production capacity, while supplying regionally sourced canola oil for Imperium. Locally sourced canola oil will help the biofuels company produce fuels that meet low-carbon fuel standards required by law in California and British Columbia, as well as biodiesel market demands in Oregon and Washington and the global marketplace. Low-carbon fuel standards mandate not only that fuel be refined from less carbon heavy materials such as petroleum, but also take into account the carbon emitted during the growth, production, distribution and use of those fuels.
“We are proud to partner with Imperium, one of our local Washington state customers benefitting from our close proximity,” said Matt Upmeyer, Chief Operations Officer of PCC. “The Imperium contract is another big step as we bring our facility to full capacity, which is great news for local canola farmers.”
About Imperium Renewables
Imperium Renewables is a global leader in next-generation biofuel production in the US. Founded in 2004, the company continues to focus on providing safe domestic fuel supplies for the marketplace and providing family wage jobs in Washington State. Imperium Renewables operates one of the nation’s largest BQ-9000 certified biodiesel facilities, Imperium Grays Harbor in Hoquiam, Wash., which is capable of producing up to 100 million gallons per year. More information is available at www.imperiumrenewables.com.
About Pacific Coast Canola
Pacific Coast Canola operates the first and only commercial scale canola crushing operation west of the Rocky Mountains in Warden, Wash., which is well-positioned to supply the expanding demand for canola products on the West Coast of the United States. Pacific Coast Canola is 84 percent owned by Legumex Walker Inc.

October is Disaster Preparedness and NOAA Weather Radio Month

Organizers with the Military Department’s Emergency Management Division are aiming for one million Washingtonians to participate in the drill. To date, more than 550,000 have registered, and the number is climbing. Last year, 710,000 people participated. People and organizations can sign up at www.shakeout.org/washington.
This is the second ShakeOut for the state of Washington. More than 37 states, Guam, Puerto Rico, American Samoa and the Province of British Columbia will run an earthquake drill on the same date and time. Participants in the Utah and in other countries will conduct their ShakeOut drills on other dates.
Gov. Inslee’s proclamation also touts two other October happenings that emphasize emergency preparedness:
• The governor proclaimed October as National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Weather Radio Awareness Month. NOAA Weather Radios provide emergency alerts about approaching hazards, complementing other disaster information sources. 
• The governor also took note of the Take Winter By Storm campaign that kicks off in October. Take Winter By Storm will highlight preparedness actions for the public to take to be ready for winter storms.
For information about Washington State Disaster Preparedness Month, NOAA weather radios, and emergency preparedness, go to http://www.emd.wa.gov/preparedness/prep_index.shtml.

International task force to discuss protecting West Coast from oil spills

The meeting is from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 25, in the Microsoft Auditorium at the Seattle Central Public Library, 1000 Fourth Ave. The meeting is open to the public, and will be broadcast online. RSVP with Linda Helmick – lihi461@ecy.wa.gov. 

The task force was authorized by a Memorandum of Cooperation signed in 1989 by Governors of Alaska, Oregon, Washington and California, and the Premier of British Columbia following the Exxon Valdez and Nestucca oil spills. These events highlight the common concerns regarding oil spill risks shared by West Coast states and provinces, and the need for cooperation across shared borders. 

The task force provides a forum where members can work together to implement regional initiatives to help protect 56,600 miles of coastline stretching from Alaska to California, and includes the Hawaiian archipelago. 

The task force is committed to improving, preventing, preparing for and responding to oil spills. It collects and shares data on spills, coordinates spill prevention projects, and promotes regulatory safeguards. 

Members include: 
Thomas M. Cullen Jr., Administrator, Office of Spill Prevention and Response, California Department of Fish and Wildlife 
Gary Gill, Deputy Director, Hawaii Department of Health
Larry Hartig, Commissioner, Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation
Dale Jensen, Spills Program Manager, Washington Department of Ecology 
Dick Pedersen, Director, Oregon Department of Environmental Quality
Wes Shoemaker, Deputy Minister, British Columbia Ministry of the Environment

Earthquakes off B.C. coast, no damage reports

VANCOUVER, British Columbia (AP) – A series of earthquakes has struck an area off British Columbia’s coast, but the quakes did not generate a tsunami and there have been no damage reports.

The largest quake recorded Tuesday was a magnitude 6.0 and was centered nearly 120 miles off Bella Bella, on British Columbia’s northern coast.

The U.S. Geological Survey says several additional quakes followed, with the largest as of Tuesday evening recorded as a magnitude 5.9.

Natural Resources Canada seismologist Honn Kao tells The Canadian Press that the area is “known to have very active seismic activity in the past” and quakes of this size are not uncommon. He says no reports have been received from anyone feeling the quakes.

Canadian Press talked to Bella Bella Royal Canadian Mounted Police Sgt. Glen Caston, who says he didn’t feel a thing and says police haven’t heard from anyone who felt any rumbling.

For quick details on the latest quakes that may affect our area, visit the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center

Tsunami Debris Information

If hazardous materials wash ashore

It is possible that containers with hazardous materials may wash ashore. Don’t touch these items or try to remove them.

Instead, notify federal and state authorities. Ecology and the U.S. Coast Guard will lead response efforts to remove any immediate threats to public health, safety and the environment.

Ecology handles about 3,800 reports of oil spills and hazardous material releases and threats annually – and mounts 1,200 field responses across the state every year.

To make a report, you should call both the National Response Center at 1-800-424-8802 and Washington Military Department Emergency Management Division (EMD) at 1-800-OILS-911 (1-800-258-5990). Both numbers are answered 24/7.

Getting word out to coastal communities

Since January 2012, representatives from NOAACoast GuardEcologyEMD, and Washington Department of Health have conducted public presentations and taken questions about the most up-to-date tsunami debris information in:

  • La Push
  • Neah Bay
  • Ocean Park
  • Ocean Shores
  • Port Angeles
  • Seaview
  • Taholah
  • Tokeland
  • Westport

Scattered debris likely along Washington outer coast

NOAA data and experience indicate the vision of a massive flotilla of debris headed for U.S. shores is unrealistic. A new NOAA modeling effort shows that some buoyant items may have reached the Pacific Northwest coast during winter 2011-2012. The bulk of the debris is likely still dispersed north of the main Hawaiian Islands and east of Midway Atoll.

Widely scattered debris may arrive intermittently along shorelines in Washington, Oregon, British Columbia, Alaska and California for a sustained period of time. For more information, go to NOAA’s Information and FAQs page.

Many variables affect where the debris will go and when. Items will sink, disperse, and break up along the way, and winds and ocean currents constantly change, making it very difficult to predict an exact date and location for the debris’ arrival on our shores.

NOAA is actively collecting information about tsunami debris at sea and throughout the region. Please report any sightings — with specific location and photographs if possible — to disasterdebris@noaa.gov.

Debris unlikely to be radioactive

Radiation experts from Washington State Department of Health believe it is highly unlikely any of the tsunami debris is radioactive. Health has continued monitoring for radioactive contamination in our environment since March 16, 2011.

If you have questions about radiation issues related to the earthquake and tsunami, please contact the Department of Health at 360-236-3300, email atradtsunamidebris@doh.wa.gov, or visit their website.

Coastal communities working on tsunami response plan

Local and tribal governments, state and federal agencies and community organizations are forging strategies for responding to tsunami debris that potentially could wash ashore on Washington’s beaches.

This effort is designed to help coastal communities and government entities work together to monitor and clean up shoreline debris and to guide local responses in case large, hazardous or unmanageable debris items need to be removed from coastal beaches.

The draft Washington state tsunami debris response plan will be refined in coming weeks and months.

Human remains unlikely

There is little chance human remains from Japan will arrive with the debris. However, if you do see something that concerns you, immediately call 9-1-1.


For More Information:

Printable cards: Contact Information (www.ecy.wa.gov/news/2012/debris_contactcards.pdf)

Flier: What to do if you see debris (www.ecy.wa.gov/news/2012/debris_flyer.pdf)

NOAA’s Marine Debris Program (http://marinedebris.noaa.gov/)

NOAA Frequently Asked Questions (http://marinedebris.noaa.gov/info/japanfaqs.html#FAQ)

ECOconnect blog: NOAA has best information about Japanese tsunami debris (http://ecologywa.blogspot.com/2012/02/noaa-has-best-information-about.html)

Ecology News Release: Statewide workshop focuses on tsunami debris response (4/25/2012)

No Tsunami Threat to US West Coast

HONOLULU (AP) – U.S. officials say a 7.4-magnitude earthquake off the coast of Japan is not expected to create a tsunami threat in Hawaii or the West Coast.

Federal agencies say that area includes Hawaii, California, Oregon, Washington, Alaska and British Columbia, Canada. No tsunami warning, watch or advisory is in effect for these areas.

The Japan meteorological agency issued a tsunami warning for a wave of up to about 3 feet. The warning was issued for a coastal area of Japan already torn apart by last month’s tsunami. Buildings as far away as Tokyo shook for about a minute. Hundreds of aftershocks have shaken the northeast region devastated by the March 11 earthquake, but few have been stronger than 7.0.

Statewide Medicine Take-Back Bill Fails to Pass State Senate

In Washington state alone, about 33 million containers of prescription and over-the-counter drugs are left unused, many finding their way into the mouths of children. There’s been an alarming increase in accidental poisonings and teen drug abuse in the last decade – every fifteen minutes a child under 4 will overdose on drugs found at home.  

Unused pharmaceuticals that are disposed of are often done so improperly—either by flushing medicines down the toilet or throwing them in the trash, which subsequently end up in our region’s waterways. Disposing of medicines in the trash simply passes the problem onto future generations as our landfills are not designed to handle this toxic waste. The legislation provided a safe and convenient way for Washington residents to dispose of unwanted and unused prescription and over-the-counter medications before they either end up in the wrong hands or end up contaminating drinking water.

“The irony is that our neighbors to the north in British Columbia have a take-back program, run and paid for by drug manufacturers, which safely collected over 133,000 pounds of medicines last year. Don’t Washington families deserve the same protection? A penny or two per container is worth the cost, especially when we are talking about children’s lives” said Margaret Shield, Policy Liaison, Local Hazardous Waste Management Program in King County.

According to Sheriffs and police departments supporting this legislation across the State, there’s a clear and urgent need for this program. Thousands of pounds of unwanted medicines are collected each year by law enforcement, but they are running out of funding to keep these programs going. “We’ve collected over a thousand pounds last year and there’s even more out there, but our budget is being cut further and it’s unlikely we can keep this going with current funding issues,” said Thurston County Undersheriff Jim Chamberlain. 

The legislation would have required drug companies to dedicate less than 1 cent for every $16 in medicines sold to implement a safe take-back program for unused medications. In Washington State, total revenues for prescription and over-the-counter medicines exceed $4 billion annually. Take back programs only exist in a small number of counties in Washington and are paid for by those communities. Substitute Senate Bill 5234 would have relieved a financial burden on law enforcement agencies and local governments who are already struggling with declining budgets.

About Take Back Your Meds

Take Back Your Meds is a group of health organizations, police, drugstores, local governments, environmental groups, and others in Washington State who support medicine take-back programs to reduce access to highly-addictive drugs, reduce the risk of poisonings, and reduce environmental contamination.  These organizations support legislation to create a secure, statewide medicine return program for unwanted medicines from households that is financed by pharmaceutical manufacturers, and that does not rely on state and local government funding. For a full listing of supporting organizations and more information about the safe disposal of pharmaceuticals, visit http://www.TakeBackYourMeds.org.

Local Ministries Prepare to Send Aid to Haiti

Haiti ARISE Ministries, is a non-profit, faith-based humanitarian organization. They have focused their efforts on educating in practical skills, spiritually strengthening and raising up leaders to affect positive change throughout the politically volatile and destitute nation. The ministry also provides a monthly food and clothing distribution and is currently working to establish a goat farm, a staffed medical clinic and a children’s home to address the restavek (child slave) problem in that country.

 
Founder, and former restavek, Marc Honorat, was on the phone from Haiti with Haiti ARISE Canada’s Vice-President, James Roberts, when the earthquake hit. He urgently asked for prayer for the country and then communication dropped, according to Roberts. Roberts also reported that a few hours before the earthquake a team of 24 volunteers, including 17 teenagers, from Nelson, British Columbia, arrived in Port au Prince to begin their Haiti ARISE mission trip. Darrell Damron, Vice-president of the Haiti ARISE U.S. Board, reported last night, that Honorat was able to get word out, via email at a neighboring mission, that the visiting team and the staff were safe.
 
“We are doing our part here to prepare to send aid as quickly as possible,” explained Damron. “Haiti ARISE will be providing relief on the ground to people in Haiti in the aftermath of this disaster; no doubt our team is already helping those nearest to them right now. People will know that they can turn to Haiti ARISE for help because we’ve been there in the past for them. When the sun rises tomorrow, the extent of the damage will be visible, and Haiti ARISE will be providing food, water, shelter, and care to many in the coming days, weeks, and months to come.”
 
For those interested in contributing to the effort to help in Haiti, or for more information on Haiti ARISE Ministries and Earthquake Disaster Updates, please visit the Haiti ARISE website www.haitiarise.org. Contributions may also be made directly through the Haiti ARISE US office:
 
P.O Box 609
Montesano, WA 98563

TALL SHIP LADY WASHINGTON SETS SCHEDULE FOR 2009 COLUMBIA RIVER VOYAGE

 Port           Dates

Ilwaco               April 23-25

Astoria              April 26-27

Cathlamet         April 29

Kalama             May 1-4

Vancouver        May 6-11

Hood River       May 15-17

Pasco               May 22-31

The Dalles         June 4-8

Hood River       June 10

Stevenson        June 12

Washougal        June 14-15

St. Helens         June 17

Rainier              June 19-21

Astoria              June 23

Ilwaco               June 24

On days of public availability, Lady Washington and Hawaiian Chieftain will invite the public for walk-on tours of the vessels. Each tour is hosted by crew in 18th-century costume. The ships will also invite the public on three-hour sailing adventures at each port. The ships may also make brief overnight stops at many of the ports as they progress upriver and downriver. Visit the Sailing Schedule page of the Historical Seaport website, www.historicalseaport.org, for ticket pricing, availability, and a complete schedule.

Lady Washington is a replica of a ship that accompanied Capt. Robert Gray’s vessel Columbia Rediviva, for which the Columbia River was named in 1787. Designated Washington State’s official ship in 2007, she and Hawaiian Chieftain visit more than 40 ports a year in Washington, Oregon, California, and British Columbia. Grays Harbor Historical Seaport Authority, the Aberdeen-based agency that owns and operates the ships, employs 30 people and has a budget of $1.2 million.

Information is subject to change without notice.  A Lady Washington and Hawaiian Chieftain fact sheet is available on the Press Releases page at www.historicalseaport.org.

Celebrating 20 Years of Changing People’s Lives: 1989-2009 – The Grays Harbor Historical Seaport Authority is a not-for-profit, 501(c)(3) public development authority based in Aberdeen, Wash. that owns and operates the tall ships Hawaiian Chieftain and Lady Washington, launched March 7, 1989, now the Official Ship of the State of Washington. GHHSA’s mission is to provide educational, vocational, recreational and ambassadorial activities and experiences that promote and preserve the maritime history of Grays Harbor, the Pacific Northwest, and our nation while serving the needs of the community.