September 2021 (volume 30, issue 9)

European Green Crabs Invade Whatcom County

The invasive species was found in a Squalicum Harbor trap. It’s not news that European green crabs have been residing in Whatcom County for at least two years. However, the Port of Bellingham has confirmed the discovery of the city’s … Continue reading

County Council Protects Cherry Point

New Restrictions on Fossil Fuel Industries Passed Unanimously Part 3 Editor’s Note: For more background and context, read Part 1 in the February 2019 issue and Part 2 in the January 2020 issue.* Cherry Point has long been one of … Continue reading

Birding as a Coping Mechanism

In the midst of downtime due to the expected dog days of birding in August, there was ample time to reflect on and deal with a multitude of other details. It’s not surprising when you consider the current chaos of … Continue reading

Before We Achieve “Net Ecological Gain,” We Need to Define It

When we talk about how to recover salmon — the math should be simple. The protection of existing habitat plus restoration of degraded habitat should equal a net gain in ecosystem function, leading to more fish. Yet every report produced … Continue reading

NWIFC Chairperson Lorraine Loomis Walks On

Lorraine Loomis, Northwest Indian Fisheries Commission chairperson and Swinomish fisheries manager, passed away August 10 at the age of 81. Loomis became fisheries manager for the Swinomish Indian Tribal Community after the 1974 Boldt decision that reaffirmed tribes’ treaty-protected fishing … Continue reading

Lummi Nation Mourns the Late Lorraine Loomis

The Northwest Indian Fisheries Commission Chair leaves behind a legacy of salmon and treaty protection Lummi Nation joins the Swinomish Tribe in honoring the late Lorraine Loomis, the Northwest Indian Fisheries Chair, a treaty rights protector and salmon defender. The … Continue reading

Bellingham City Council

Action Taken at July 12, 2021 Meeting Report and Update: As of 7/12/21, Whatcom County has reached a 70 percent vaccination rate. HS 1510 passed the state Legislature this year and will be effective July 25, 2021, which reduces police … Continue reading

Whatcom County Council

Action Taken at June 29, 2021 Meeting Shall the council: 149. Authorize the executive to sign a 6,250 contract (amendment #1) with DH of Spokane to continue funding the Covid-19 campaign to educate young adults? At the 2/23/2021 meeting, vote … Continue reading

Port of Bellingham Commission

Action Taken at June 3, 2021 Meeting The meeting scheduled for Monday, June 1 was cancelled. It was rescheduled for Thursday, June 3. Shall the commission 69. Authorize the executive director to sign a one-year extension of the contract with … Continue reading

Senior Activity Center Makes a Difference

Editor’s Note: There are over 100 organizations in Whatcom County working to provide supportive ser- vices to those experiencing chronic poverty and its associated effects: ad- diction, homelessness, incarceration, mental illness, and unemployment. Whatcom Watch believes these orga- nizations often … 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

What’s Wrong With Washington State Water Law?

  State water law is a complicated mess, a piece-by-piece accumulation of disparate laws since 1917. Worse, these laws confound solutions to the problems we face today — climate change and population growth — in managing an increasingly scarce and … Continue reading