UH study: High levels of mercury found in fish substitutions – KITV.COM

Disturbing new study from University of Hawaii. Looks like Sea Bass may be off the list of food to eat, since it’s impossible to know where it really came from. Or which part of the sales chain is falsifying the data. It appears to be the people sourcing it.

HONOLULU —New measurements from fish purchased at retail seafood counters in 10 different states show the extent to which mislabeling can expose consumers to unexpectedly high levels of mercury, a harmful pollutant, according to a new study from the University of Hawaii at Manoa.

Read more: http://www.kitv.com/news/uh-study-high-levels-of-mercury-found-in-fish-substitutions/27594146#ixzz3Ard63ZMK

Original Study named:

Seafood Substitutions Obscure Patterns of Mercury Contamination in Patagonian Toothfish (Dissostichus eleginoides) or “Chilean Sea Bass”

Mussels Unlocking Secrets to What’s In the Water – KOMO News

This short story by KOMO on the efforts of various environmental groups to carry out a federally funded program to test waters for pollutants via filter feeders, or mussels. The good news is that high levels of pollutants were not found in more remote areas (like Jefferson County), but that where the high levels were found, we are still seeing problems from PCBs, paint toxins and other chemicals that were banned decades ago.

Port Angeles and Hood Canal have been part of the program, but apparently Hood Canal was not tested in 2008. PA appears to be not polluted enough to worry about.

The one thing to remember is that these filter feeders do collect toxins. If you want to protect yourself while eating filter feeders, always ask where they were harvested.

If you’d like to explore the results of the program nationally, including all the sites in the Salish Sea, go to this web site:


This program has been ongoing for 20+ years, so we are able to now see long term trends in the analysis of the data.

KOMO story is here:


How Long Does Garbage Last In the Ocean? – Art by Erica Wasner

Shared out by our friends at Ocean Defender in Hawaii – www.oceandefenderhawaii.com Worth sharing with kids. Great for getting a beach walk and bringing along a bag for the garbage.

How Long Does Garbage Last In The Ocean?

In the Bowels of the City, Blocking Wastewater Overflows – NY Times

The New York Times today reports of a new method of slowing combined sewer overflow. Given the expensive and earthquake prone methods that Port Angeles is currently proposing, this seems like an interesting alternative.

It happens dozens of times a year, undermining water quality, closing beaches and endangering aquatic life: Hit by major rainfall, New York’s sewers release raw sewage and polluted storm water into New York Harbor. These “overflow events” account for an estimated 27 billion gallons of pollutants annually in the city’s waters.


Biochar presentation. What’s that? Sept 26th 3:30 to 5 PM

For immediate release
Contact: Darcy McNamara: darcym@wsu.edu or 360/379-5610 x222

Biochar: A New Way to Cleaner Water

Howard Sprouse is the guest speaker at a presentation on “biochar” a material that has exciting applications for removing pollution from water. The free presentation, which will begin with an overview of low impact development techniques, will be held on Wednesday, September 26 at the Jefferson County Library, 620 Cedar Avenue, in Port Hadlock from 3:30 to 5pm.

Participants will learn what biochar is, how it is made, costs involved and how it could be used to improve water quality. Industry and development professionals including engineers, landscaper designers, builders, contractors, developers, architects, environmental consultants and farmers are encouraged to attend. The free presentation is open to the public and is hosted by WSU Jefferson County Extension with support from the Watershed Stewardship Resource Center.

Biochar is a charcoal-like material that can be used as a soil amendment to raise the fertility of the soil to enhance plant growth. It is now being studied for the potential it has to remove contaminants from water. Sprouse and others at WSU Extension are studying the potential use of biochar to remove pollutants from stormwater including copper, cadmium and lead.

About the presenter:
Howard Sprouse is the President and CEO of the Remediators, Inc., a developer of bioremediation technologies since the mid 1990s. Mr. Sprouse previously worked as a consultant for Battelle’s Pacific Northwest National Laboratory in Sequim, Washington assisting with the development of mycoremediation technology. His work there assisted projects aimed towards remediation of petroleum hydrocarbons, biological agents, pathogen degradation, and biofiltration of agricultural runoff. Mr. Sprouse has also worked for the Department of Botany, University of Washington, as a research assistant for fungal ecology research in Olympic National Park. He is recognized in the bioremediation industry as the first to commercialize mycoremediation technology in the United States and as a developer of technology using biochar. His business, The Remediators Incorporated is located in Washington State where they do a variety of environmental based services.

For more information, please contact Darcy McNamara, LID and Natural Resources Educator at darcym@wsu.edu or 360/379-5610 x222.

Clean Water Act’s Anti-Pollution Goals Prove Elusive – Earthfix

Earthfix article on the 40th anniversary of the Clean Water Act. This article highlights how hard it is to achieve these lofty goals.


Upgraded wastewater treatment plant makes the Stilly sweet

While out of the area news, I thought I would publish this because of the quote of the plant manager drinking the treated sewage water as proof that it’s cleaned. We like that idea.

5/28 Everett Herald
Upgraded wastewater treatment plant makes the Stilly sweet
By Gale Fiege, Herald Writer

ARLINGTON — The city’s public works director is so proud of Arlington’s newly expanded and upgraded sewer plant that he’s sad the project is finally over after six years.

And don’t force him, but James Kelly is willing to prove his pride by drinking the water that flows from the plant into the Stillaguamish River.

“If you can get over the gag factor, it’s perfectly safe and probably better water than you would find in much of the world,” Kelly said.

More at


Marine “dead zones” detailed in interactive online map

I would caution the reader about drawing conclusions like Liam did in this article. While malfunctioning septic systems *would* contribute to this problem, and probably *do* contribute, I have not yet seen scientific evidence that they *are* the root causes in Hood Canal. And I have been watching for them for years now. It’s still good to be having septics checked (which most aren’t currently). Additionally the notion that blaming a few random spills off West Point in Seattle where billions of processed sewage is dumped into the Sound is absurd on it’s face. It’s the elephant in the room, as they say.

1/24 KPLU FM
Marine “dead zones” detailed in interactive online map
By Liam Moriarty

Growing populations and increasing pollution are contributing to more and more “dead zones” in bays and oceans around the world.

Now there’s an interactive online map pinpointing more than 760 spots across the globe—including 22 in Washington – that either are dead zones or are in danger of becoming one.

Listen at

Mystery Bay shellfish population in crisis, says Tribes – PDN

Peninsula Daily News is reporting on a letter by the Tribes to DNR, and the County, on the pathetic condition of their shellfish beds in Mystery Bay. Seems as if the expansion of mooring buoys is the most likely culprit, though obviously it’s a simple target that seems to have no science behind the idea. Could it be other issues, like failing septic, or warming of the Sound? Read the story at the PDN…



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