June 2020 (volume 29, issue 6)

Lake Whatcom Is in Decline

A Matter of Priorities The take-home message in the latest Lake Whatcom Monitoring Report is that our community’s primary drinking water source is continuing to decline (Matthews et al. 2020). The good news is we are supposedly on track to … Continue reading

Climate Change and Public Health

by David Kershner Our world now faces two interrelated and simultaneous public health crises: the coronavirus pandemic and climate change. With the global death toll from Covid-19 already over 350,000 in less than six months, and so many essential workers … Continue reading

About Lake Whatcom

Lake Whatcom is the primary drinking water source for about 100,000 residents of Whatcom County. The lake is comprised of three sub-basins from which water samples are collected in October through December, in February and April through September each year. … Continue reading

Nesting Birds in Whatcom County

by Joe Meche By early June, our winter birds have left for their traditional breeding grounds to the north and east. When you consider the thousands of birds that wintered here, you might think their departure leaves us without any … Continue reading

Please Stay Home!

Dear Watchers, Our country is so divided, and Covid-19 has contributed to the schism. When we combine politics with science in today’s hyper-partisan environment, we end up with politics winning. That’s deadly in this pandemic. If the virus were a … Continue reading

Nothing to Hide

Dear Watchers, Being watched under surveillance has become a valued part of modern life. We would miss the capabilities to verify the truth here and abroad, follow-up on even health pandemics, protect citizens and business assets, and catch criminals or … Continue reading

Pollution-Based Economy Cannot Be Sustained

by Lorraine Loomis On April 16, as the coronavirus attacked communities across Washington, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced that it is rolling back our water quality standards that are the most protective of human health in the country. … Continue reading

Fixing Habitat Key to Salmon Recovery

by Lorraine Loomis Until we take real action to protect and restore salmon habitat, we are looking toward a future with more tightly restricted fisheries for everyone. That’s the lesson after treaty tribal and state fisheries managers reached agreement last … Continue reading

Port of Bellingham Commission

Compiled by Bill McCallum The meetings scheduled for April 7 and April 21 were not held. Action Taken at April 3, 2020 Special Meeting Shall the commission: 32. Establish a tenant rent relief policy? The executive director’s declaration of emergency … Continue reading

Bellingham City Council

Action Taken at April 13, 2020 Meeting Presentation: Bellingham Emergency Management update on Covid-19. The city has been providing information about efforts to deal with the ongoing Covid-19 crisis, and conducted its first web-based remote-attendance meeting on 4/13, as per … Continue reading

Whatcom County Council

Compiled by Barry MacHale Action Taken at March 31, 2020 Special Meeting Shall the council: 58. Approve an initial budget of ,500,000 for a special revenue fund titled Corvid-19 Emergency Response Fund? The county executive has issued a proclamation of … Continue reading

Implementation Process for Bellingham’s Climate Action Plan

by Alec Howard In 2018, the Bellingham City Council adopted a resolution to create a Climate Action Plan Task Force that would develop a “Climate Protection Action Plan 2018 Update” (Climate Action Plan), and recommend policies to meet the city’s … Continue reading

A History of City Climate Protection

The city of Bellingham has been involved in climate protection for 15 years. At the March 14, 2005, meeting, the City Council endorsed the Cities for Climate Protection program to reduce global warming and air pollution emissions. The council voted … Continue reading

Portrait of Whatcom Community Foundation

by Mauri Ingram There are over 100 organizations in Whatcom County working to provide supportive services to those experiencing chronic poverty and its associated effects: addiction, homelessness, incarceration, mental illness, and unemployment. Whatcom Watch believes these organizations often labor unnoticed … Continue reading

About 5G: Message From a Concerned Parent

by Danica Thiessen It seems like it’s the invisible things in life that can take on epic proportions and transform our lives in radical ways. I am reminded of how important the unseen world is with the current Covid-19 crisis. … Continue reading


“When power leads man toward arrogance, poetry reminds him of his limitations. When power narrows the area of man’s concern, poetry reminds him of the richness and diversity of existence. When power corrupts, poetry cleanses.” — John F. Kennedy Do … Continue reading

Life Returns to Whatcom Creek: One Year After the Pipeline Explosion

by Tiffany Campbell Editor’s Note: For an article on the Whatcom Creek pipeline fire, go to: http://www.whatcomwatch.org/old_issues/v8i7.html#story1. The below article is abbreviated; for the entire article go to:   http://www.whatcomwatch.org/old_issues/v9i6.html#story8   Flash Fire The June 10, 1999, pipeline rupture spouted a … Continue reading

Seven of Washington’s U.S. Representatives Sign Letter Supporting Restoration Jobs

Conservation Northwest is deeply grateful to U.S. House of Representatives members Derek Kilmer, Kim Schrier, Rick Larsen, Denny Heck, Suzan DelBene, Adam Smith and Pramila Jayapal for signing a letter to the House leadership supporting a “Restoration and Resilience Jobs” … Continue reading