Our mission is to protect the habitat of Puget Sound tidelands from the underregulated expansion of new and intensive shellfish aquaculture methods. These methods were never anticipated when the Shoreline Management Act was passed. They are transforming the natural tideland ecosystems in Puget Sound and are resulting in a fractured shoreline habitat. In South Puget Sound much of this has been done with few if any meaningful shoreline permits and with limited public input. It is exactly what the Shoreline Management Act was intended to prevent.

Get involved and contact your elected officials to let them you do not support aquaculture's industrial transformation of Puget Sound's tidelands.

Governor Inslee:

Monday, November 4, 2013

Seattle Shellfish Geoduck Hatchery: Permit Hearing December 10, 1PM

Update 11/7: Comments on the SEPA determination being a Mitigated Determination of Non-Significance (MDNS) are due by the end of today.

Shoreline Permit Hearing in Mason County
(Note: The SEPA determination has already been made.)

Date:  December 10
Time: 1PM
Location: Commissioner's Chambers of Building I, 411 North Fifth ST, Shelton
RE: Mason County Shoreline Permit SHR2013-00013, Seattle Shellfish Hatchery Facility
Description: Construction of two single story hatchery buildings, an algae growing area ( greenhouse), a seawater intake and return system, driveway and parking improvements and stormwater conveyances.

Proposed Location of Hatchery Facility

(click to enlarge)

Mason County will hold a hearing on Seattle Shellfish's proposal to install a new hatchery facility on their upland property located adjacent to Spencer Cove on Harstine Island. The hatchery is to address a seed shortage in general but more specifically to allow Seattle Shellfish to break from being dependent on Taylor Shellfish and the Lummi Tribe for their geoduck seed.

Tideland Ownership
There is a question of whether the tidelands within the lagoon which the proposal is adjacent to were ever transferred by the state into private ownership. While private transactions indicated ownership, there do not appear to be any deeds from the state. The original survey which the state based ownership and sales off of did not include the lagoon area. The surveyor only traced the outer shoreline along the spit, across the entrance, then northward along Spencer Cove, leaving the lagoon separated. As noted, tideland deeds from the state do not indicate they were ever transferred into private ownership.

Plate from 1880 of Spencer Cove and the Lagoon 
State surveyors did not include the lagoon.
Tidelands waterward of the blue line were sold.

 Current Use of Lagoon and Tidelands
Currently the lagoon is used by Seattle Shellfish for staging their barges onto which PVC pipes and other materials are loaded from the upland area. On occasion the barges use the tidelands to rest on when the tide is out (see picture above). How the Department of Natural Resources will resolve this legal issue is unknown.

Current Use of Lagoon's Tidelands
(hatchery proposal is upland
from the access road)
(click to enlarge)

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