Catchup on Chinook, Climate Change, World Water Day

It’s been a little while since I’ve had time to post to H2ONC. So here’s a quick update on a few newsworthy items that North Coaster’s and other readers should pay attention to:

Due to an amazingly sharp drop off in returning fish, the Sacramento Chinook salmon fishery has been closed from fishing, essentially closing down fishing from Cape Falcon (south of Manzanita) to the San Francisco Bay Area. This is exceptionally bad news for North Coast fishermen and the communities that depend upon the roughly $15 million fishery. Senator Wyden (D-OR) is working to get a salmon disaster declared quickly so that funds are disbursed in 2008, rather than two years later with the last fishery disaster. A full news article on the closure and the fishery collapse can be found at the NY Times here and at the San Francisco Chronicle here.

Couple of other important articles that have crossed my desk in recent weeks includes a report from the National Academies of Science on climate change impacts to coastal transportation. This topic should resonate with many here as the December Storm damaged a critical rail line and made roads rough-going for more than a few weeks in the aftermath. The shorter news on this topic can be found at the New York Times here.

Lastly, World Water Day was last Friday, March 21st. While there are a plethora of “days” out there for people to commemorate everything from battles to personal causes, this one remains important–though barely audible over the drone of the news cycle and the patter of everyday life (even mine, I admit). Below is an excerpt from the National Academies of Science press release on the event. It neatly underscores why water is so critical and why World Water Day is not “just another day.”

“Today 2.6 billion people, including almost 1 billion children, live without basic sanitation. Every 20 seconds, a child dies as a result of poor sanitation, leading to 1.5 million preventable deaths each year.

The theme of this year’s World Water Day is sanitation. Organized by the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization, activities will take place around the world to raise awareness and accelerate progress toward reducing the number of people without sanitation by half over the next seven years.

The United Nations estimates it will cost $10 billion annually to halve the proportion of people without basic sanitation by 2015. If sustained, the same investment could achieve basic sanitation for the entire world within one or two decades.”

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