USGS Divers Steve Rubin and Reg Reisenbichler laying out a survey transect.
Scuba-diver scientists from the U.S. Geological Survey, with support teams from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the Lower Elwha Klallam Tribe, and Washington Sea Grant, are returning to the mouth of the Elwha River to explore and catalogue effects of released sediment on marine life following the nation’s largest dam removal effort. Scientists expect dam removal to cause short-term adverse effects to marine life, followed by large-scale ecosystem resurgence once the river’s sediment load returns to a more normal state. Read more about it here; also, check out this NYTimes blog post about the “biological boomerang” effect on the Elwha.
Last week, at the University of Washington, a state panel discussed a wide range of draft recommendations for how Washington can tackle ocean acidification along its coasts. Gov. Chris Gregoire appointed the panel –a collection of scientists, shellfish industry officials, and federal and state government representatives; it is scheduled to present its recommendations to her on Oct. 1. This is the first state effort of its kind in the nation. Read more here.
More than 24 tons of illegal ivory were seized around the world in 2011 — an annual record. International authorities are weighing a surprising new approach to curbing the trade: making it legal again. UW’s Center for Conservation Biology Director, Samuel Wasser, is quoted. Read more here.
For the first time, researchers have identified tropical and subtropical species of marine protozoa living in Arctic waters, having apparently floated there on Atlantic currents. OCEAN‘s Jody Deming is quoted; read more here!
A new study co-authored SEFS‘ Crystal Raymond finds that as much as 1/3 of the stored carbon in Washington’s forests will be lost to the atmosphere by 2040, as a result of climate change-induced increases in the area burned by wildfires. Read more here.
Check out this great interview with KING5′s Jeff Renner, about the challenges and joys of being a meteorologist, and the importance of UW’s research for weather prediction for our community.
Since 1900, six earthquakes of magnitude 5.0 or greater have been recorded as having caused damage in Snohomish and Island counties, or were centered within the counties’ borders. ESS‘ Bill Steele is quoted; read more here.