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.

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Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Willapa Bay: Ecology Announces Draft Pesticide Application Permit to Eliminate Native Shrimp

Comments accepted through December 8.
Documents are available by clicking here.
Comments may be emailed here: derek.rockett@ecy.wa.gov
(see below for mailing address for written comments)

Improving the "merroir" of Willapa Bay oysters.

Will the "chemical soup" have another ingredient added?
The Department of Ecology has announced a draft permit and EIS which would allow the application of the pesticide imidacloprid on the tidelands of Willapa Bay and Grays Harbor to eliminate that native burrowing shrimp, a food source of native Green Sturgeon, to help grow non-native Pacific oysters. It has been developed at the request of the shellfish industry and follows the first application of an herbicide to eliminate Japanese eelgrass, a sea grass which the shellfish industry claims makes growing non-native Manila clams difficult in Willapa Bay. Both follow Washington's Attorney General office describing Willapa Bay as a "chemical soup."

WSR 14-20-123
[Filed October 1, 2014, 11:42 a.m.]

Announcing a Draft Individual Permit for Burrowing Shrimp Management on Commercial Oyster and Clam Beds in Willapa Bay and Grays Harbor for Review and Comment

Proposed Permit: The Washington state department of ecology (ecology) is proposing a new individual permit to regulate the use of imidacloprid for management of burrowing shrimp on commercial oyster and clam beds in Willapa bay and Grays Harbor, a surface water of Washington state. Permit development was requested by the Willapa/Grays Harbor Oyster Growers Association (WGHOGA) to control burrowing shrimp on commercial oyster and clam beds in Willapa Bay and Grays Harbor to aid in the cultivation and harvest of oysters and clams.

Washington's water quality statutes and regulations do not allow the discharge of pollutants to waters of the state without permit coverage. Imidacloprid, the pesticide proposed for management of burrowing shrimp is a potential pollutant, and therefore requires a discharge permit before application to surface waters.

The applicant has applied for a sediment impact zone (SIZ) as the proposed discharge will likely impact sediment quality on sediments where the pesticide is applied. A SIZ allows for sediments and sediment dwelling organisms in the treatment areas to be temporarily impacted. A sediment monitoring program will be established to ensure that recovery or recolonization of treatment areas occurs. The applicant requests approval for a SIZ that covers an area of one thousand five hundred acres annually in Willapa Bay and five hundred acres annually in Grays Harbor throughout the term of the permit. If granted by ecology, the SIZ will be incorporated into the discharge permit as a permit condition.

As part of the environmental review necessary under the State Environmental Policy Act, ecology has determined that this proposal is likely to have significant adverse impacts on the environment. A draft environmental impact statement (DEIS) has been prepared. The DEIS, discharge permit and SIZ will be available for review and comment for forty-five days beginning on October 24, through December 8, 2014.

Purpose of the Permit: This permit would allow the management of burrowing shrimp on commercial oyster and clam beds in Willapa Bay and Grays Harbor, using the pesticide imidacloprid. WGHOGA must apply for coverage under this permit prior to implementing burrowing shrimp control activities using imidacloprid.

Copies of the Draft Permit: You may download copies of the draft permit, fact sheet, DEIS, and SIZ application beginning October 24, 2014, from the following web site

The public review period for these documents ends on December 8, 2014.

Ecology Contact: Derek Rockett, Washington State Department of Ecology, P.O. Box 47775, Olympia, WA 98504-7775, phone (360) 407-6697, e-mail derek.rockett@ecy.wa.gov.

Open House, Workshop, and Public Hearing: Ecology will hold one combined open house, workshop, and public hearing on the draft individual permit, DEIS, and SIZ application. The purpose of the workshop is to explain the individual permit, and answer questions in order to facilitate meaningful testimony during the hearing. The purpose of the hearing is to provide an opportunity for people to give formal oral testimony and comment on the proposed permit, DEIS, and SIZ application. Written comments will receive the same consideration as oral testimony. The open house, workshop, and public hearing will begin at 10 a.m. and conclude when public testimony is complete.

Open House, Workshop, and Public Hearing: On December 2, 2014, at 10 a.m., Willapa Harbor Community Center, 916 West First Street, South Bend, WA 98586.

Submitting Written Comments: Ecology will accept written comments on the draft permit, fact sheet, environmental impact analysis, and SIZ application until 5 p.m. (or postmark if mailed), December 8, 2014. Ecology prefers comments be submitted by e-mail. E-mailed comments must contain the commenter's name and postal address. Comments should reference specific permit text when possible.

Submit comments by e-mail to derek.rockett@ecy.wa.gov.

Submit written comments to Derek Rockett, Washington State Department of Ecology, P.O. Box 47775, Olympia, WA 98504-7775.

Ecology must receive e-mail comments by 5 p.m., December 8, 2014. Written comments must be postmarked no later than December 8, 2014.

Issuing the Permit: The final permit will be issued after ecology receives and considers all public comments. If public comments cause a substantial change in the permit conditions from the original draft permit, another public notice of draft and comment period may ensue. Ecology expects to issue the general permit in the spring of 2015.

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