Protecting the environment and jobs at Cherry Point

by Tim Flanagan on June 30, 2010

Sandi Doughton has the story in the Seattle Times:

Before deciding to move its research fleet from Seattle to Newport, advice Ore., the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) failed to adequately consider the potentially cheaper option of existing federal facilities in Seattle, a federal auditor’s report says.

The report also takes NOAA to task for failing to analyze the total long-term cost of moving the ships to Newport, which lacks major maritime facilities and is more than 200 miles from the Seattle-based researchers who use the vessels.

"We are unable to provide assurance that NOAA’s award of the lease to the Port of Newport provided the most cost-effective solution … for the government," said the final report from Todd Zinser, the Commerce Department’s Inspector General (IG). NOAA is a branch of the Commerce Department.

The report is advisory, and NOAA seems to be sticking with its choice.

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DNR’s Ear to the Ground blog has this interesting story, ambulance but what really caught my eye was the photo caption:

Cherry Point Aquatic ReserveThe Cherry Point Aquatic Reserve is a unique aquatic ecosystem with industrial activities located in the Strait of Georgia in northern Puget Sound—on the western shores of Whatcom County, purchase
Washington.

[So the Strait of Georgia is now in Puget Sound?!? I think we need a new name for all this inland water! —Tim]

Protecting the environment and jobs is a key point in the management plan DNR drafted for the Cherry Point Aquatic Reserve. Located in the Strait of Georgia in northern Puget Sound, the area is known for its unique aquatic ecosystem. It’s also an economic driver for Bellingham and other communities. The latter issue was the focus an article today in the Bellingham Herald, which describes the concerns industry representatives have about the plan.

DNR has worked over the past decade, and gathered input from citizens, industry, local government and other interests to identify the natural resources, habitats, and species in the Cherry Point Reserve, as well as the proposed uses and management actions that will protect resources and jobs.

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