Friends of the San Juans

Pull Together Against Kinder Morgan @ Upcoming Benefit Concerts!

by Friends of the San Juans on March 10, 2017 No comments

Pull Together: First Nations Standing Against Kinder Morgan Benefit Concerts and Talks – Coming to an Island Near You!

Mar. 30, San Juan Island , Brickworks

Mar. 31, Orcas, Westsound Community Center

Apr. 1, Lopez, Woodmen Hall

Apr. 2, Anacortes, Seafarers Memorial Park Bldg.

(all events are from 7-8:30 p.m.)

Kinder Morgan’s pipeline and tanker project poses unacceptable risks to our oceans and waterways, our climate, economies, and communities. It must never be built. Canadian First Nations have vowed to stop it in the courts. To support their legal funds, people, businesses, and community groups are hosting community events to raise funds and build community. Join us at one of these benefit concerts in the San Juans as we pull together to save our waters!

Share and RSVP on Facebook at the links below:

San Juan (3/30):

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Friends of the San JuansPull Together Against Kinder Morgan @ Upcoming Benefit Concerts!

Join the Lopez Island Salish Sea Stands Information Session – 2/9

by Friends of the San Juans on February 4, 2017 No comments

February 9, 7-8 p.m. at Grace Church.

Friends and community members are leading a collaborative educational seminar for the Salish Sea Stands initiative, other involved organizations, and interested islanders. The session will focus on how to effectively communicate with key legislators about the environmental and economic threats San Juan County faces from greatly increased oil tanker traffic linked to the Canadian Kinder Morgan tar-sands oil pipeline expansion.

Click here to share the event on Facebook.

Participants will be ready to for the “Salish Sea Stands on Capitol Hill” day on February 13! Click here for more information.

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Friends of the San JuansJoin the Lopez Island Salish Sea Stands Information Session – 2/9

Check out our new “Living with the Shoreline” Guide!

by Friends of the San Juans on February 2, 2017 No comments

Click here to view the new “Living with the Shoreline” guide.

Waterfront properties in the San Juan Islands are part of a beautiful, complex, and increasingly fragile marine ecosystem that supports salmon, rockfish, seabirds, whales and human communities. Decisions made by owners of shoreline property can influence more than just their land. As one property owner noted “I wondered what can I, as one small person, do to help all of the animals that live in the water? It turns out that the orca feed on salmon, and salmon feed on the tiny little fish that spawn on my beach. For this reason, I will do all I can to keep our shoreline natural.”

To help provide information about cost effective and natural approaches to protecting waterfront property, Friends of the San Juans recently completed a new “Living with the Shoreline Stewardship Guide.” The colorful and accessible guide provides extensive technical information and resources on key topics of interest including vegetation management, coastal erosion and flooding, and the protection and restoration of habitat. Local landowners and properties are also highlighted throughout.

The shoreline guide will be mailed to all waterfront property owners in February. Everyone, not just waterfront landowners, can learn something new about our island community. Click here to download the guide, or pick up a copy at the Friends of the San Juans office 650 Mullis St. Suite 201 in Friday Harbor.

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Friends of the San JuansCheck out our new “Living with the Shoreline” Guide!

Action Alert: Comment on the Oil Transportation Safety Bill!

by Friends of the San Juans on January 29, 2017 No comments

The 2017 Legislative Session is now in full swing and oil transportation is a hot issue. Despite the critical gains around public disclosure and preparedness measures, significant gaps remain that put our communities and waterways at risk of an oil spill or other such disaster.

In response, Representative Farrell (46th) and Senator Carlyle (36th) introduced the Oil Transportation Safety bill (HB 1611 / SB 5462). Highlights of the bill include:

  • Ensuring the oil industry pays in the case of a spill or other disaster;
  • Updating the funding for prevention, preparedness and response;
  • Protecting Puget Sound and the Salish Sea from increased oil barges and other vessels from the Kinder Morgan Pipeline;
  • Protecting against refineries turning into transshipment terminals; and
  • Strengthening oversight of pipeline safety.

This is a great time to engage and show your support!

Two hearings have been scheduled on the bill – Thursday, February 2nd at 10 a.m. in the Senate and the following Monday, February 6th at 1:30 p.m. in the House.

You can also call the committee members (at the numbers below) and tell them that this is a key piece of legislation they should support. Click here to send an email to your legislators as well.

The Oil Transportation Safety Bill is a key step to holding the oil industry accountable and ensures that Washingtonians are put first.

Given the Trump Administration’s support of the oil industry, it is now more important than ever to make sure that we here in Washington are holding the line against fossil fuels. We can do this!

We will also be talking about the oil transportation safety bill in person at the Salish Sea Stands on Capitol Hill Day on February 13 – join us there too! There will be a shuttle bus for islanders from Anacortes. Click here for more details about the 13th.

Senate Energy, Environment, Telecommunications Committee (for SB5 5462):

Senator Ericksen; (42),

Senator Sheldon: (35),

Senator Carlyle; (36), 360-786 –

Senator Brown; (8),

Senator Hobbs; (44),

Senator Honeyford; (15) 360-786 – 7684,

Senator Ranker; (40) 360-786- 7678,

Senator Wellman; (41) 360-786- 7641,


House Environment Committee (for HB 1611):

Rep. Fitzgibbon (34), (360)

Rep. Peterson (21), (360)

Rep. Shea (4), (360)

Rep. Short (7), (360)

Rep. Dye (9), (360)

Rep. Fey (27), (360)

Rep. Kagi (32), (360)

Rep. McBride (48), (360)

Rep. Taylor (15), (360)

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Friends of the San JuansAction Alert: Comment on the Oil Transportation Safety Bill!

Join “Salish Sea Stands on Capitol Hill Day” on February 13 in Olympia!

by Friends of the San Juans on January 26, 2017 No comments

The legislative session in Washington State is underway and we want to make sure that the environment and economy of the Salish Sea are protected. Now is the time to register if you would like to join us for the “Salish Sea Stands on Capitol Hill Day” in Olympia on February 13.

We will be pushing on our lawmakers to make real gains in protecting our communities and waterways from the risk of oil spills, derailments, and other disasters. Important gaps remain around funding, protection of the Puget Sound, and pipelines. This year’s bill is sponsored by Representative Farrell (46th) and Senator Carlyle (36th), House Bill 1611 and Senate Bill 5462, respectively.

Who should attend? Anyone that lives, works or plays in the Salish Sea!

On Monday, February 13, join us for a lobby day and rally in Olympia to show support for oil transportation safety, the Salish Sea, and our communities. We hope people from all over the region will STAND ON THE CAPITOL and speak up for a healthy economy and a healthy Salish Sea.

Rally will be on the steps of the Capitol at 12:30 p.m. and legislative appointments occurring throughout the day. Click here to register for Salish Sea Stands on Capitol Hill day and we’ll make appointments with your legislators:

There will be a morning meet up at United Churches of Olympia on the 13th:
When: 8:30 a.m.
Where: In the social hall of the United Churches of Olympia, 110 11th Ave SE, Olympia
Tea, Coffee, and morning snacks will be provided. BYO lunch and reusable water container.
Logistics for lobbying will also be discussed at 9:00 a.m. at the church.

Transportation is being organized!
For those traveling from the San Juan Islands, a bus shuttle from the Anacortes Ferry Terminal will depart at 5:15 p.m. on Sunday, February 12 to Olympia and return to Anacortes on February 13 for the 9:15 p.m. boat. A generous donor has offered to pay for the bus, so there will be no charge to ride on the shuttle. If you want to join the shuttle, please RSVP at the link below by 9 a.m. this Tuesday, 2/7. You will be responsible for your own lodging in Olympia on the night of the 12th. We are working to block out rooms at a hotel and will give all registrants booking information this Tuesday.

We have also created three handy links to promote group carpooling from various regions so folks can self-organize.
• North Puget Sound:
• Everett-Seattle-Tacoma:
• Olympic Peninsula:

Click here to register!

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Friends of the San JuansJoin “Salish Sea Stands on Capitol Hill Day” on February 13 in Olympia!

Kinder Morgan Action Alert: Don’t let BP put our region at risk!

by Friends of the San Juans on December 16, 2016 No comments

The expansion of Kinder Morgan’s Trans Mountain Pipeline endangers our region. They are projected to nearly triple capacity of the existing pipeline from 300,000 to 890,000 barrels of tar sands crude oil a day—AND increase vessel traffic through the Salish Sea seven-fold, with each tanker holding more than twenty-five million gallons of oil.

Some of this product could be exported through BP’s dock at Cherry Point. The Army Corps of Engineers is supposed to be evaluating the environmental impact of this dock, but it’s dragging its feet. We need you to speak up and tell the Corps to stop delaying! See below for a form letter you can use to tell the Army Corps of Engineers to protect the Salish Sea from more oil tankers.

The environmental study for the dock should reveal that the permit BP is using for this expansion was issued illegally and that their plans are dangerous. For more than 10 years, the Army Corps of Engineers has been delaying cracking down—now it’s time for it to act. We need your help!

BP’s dock enables far more oil tanker traffic than permitted by a 1977 law written by Senator Warren Magnuson. And we’re not talking about just a few more trips than what is allowed—it would be at least 190 more tanker calls a year to the BP refinery. That’s a recipe for disaster in a fragile waterway already crisscrossed by thousands of ships bound to ports in Washington and British Columbia each year. These ships carry millions of tons of hazardous fuels and cargo. The U.S. and Canada do not have the technologies or capabilities to clean up a tar sands oil spill. In addition, advocates of the project have yet to even outline how to best equip first responders in the event of a spill.

Click here to see a more detailed comment letter that Friends of the San Juans and our partners will be sending to the Army Corps regarding this issue.

Action from people like you recently helped push the Army Corps to halt the Dakota Access Pipeline. We know public pressure can convince the agency to do the right thing. Now, we need to build on that momentum and demand that the Corps of Engineers release the final environmental impact study for BP’s tanker dock.

Form letter for you to adapt:

To: Colonel John G. Buck, Commander, Seattle District, ACOE (

Please also Bcc: Katie Fleming, Friends of the San Juans ( We will make sure that your letters are also given to Senators Cantwell and Murray along with King County Executive Dow Constantine and Governor Inslee.

Subject: Please release the final EIS for the BP Cherry Point tanker terminal.

Dear Colonel John G. Buck:

We have been waiting for more than 11 years for the Army Corps of Engineers to produce an Environmental Impact Statement for the expansion of BP’s Cherry Point tanker terminal. The Draft EIS, released more than two years ago, failed to recommend a limit on the number of crude oil tankers allowed to call on the refinery terminal, which is a direct violation of the Magnuson Amendment. It should not take more than a decade to conclude that building a second dock doubles the capacity for BP to transport oil.

We are calling on the Army Corps of Engineers to release a Final EIS for the Cherry Point refinery tanker terminal immediately—limiting the tanker traffic to no more than the number that called on the refinery before the second dock was built in compliance with Magnuson.

Puget Sound cannot afford to wait given the approval of the Kinder Morgan tar sands pipeline expansion which will increase tar sands flowing by pipeline to refineries in Washington and exponentially escalate tanker traffic by 700% jeopardizing the region.


(Photo above by Chris Teren)

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Friends of the San JuansKinder Morgan Action Alert: Don’t let BP put our region at risk!

Canada Approved the Kinder Morgan Project – What’s next?

by Friends of the San Juans on December 2, 2016 No comments

Concerned by the national election results and now the Canadian government’s approval of the Kinder Morgan Transmountain Pipeline expansion? We are too.

It is clear that our work at Friends is more difficult and more necessary than ever. With both threats and opportunities before us, let’s stand together to protect this place and the communities we love!  Here’s how you can help us defend our waters.

1. Join in on an upcoming community conversation with Friends’ board and staff. Please join us for a discussion about how together we can use local actions in the San Juan Islands to create positive change in 2017 and beyond. There is a lot we can do by using our collective power to create innovative, lasting solutions for our climate, energy, housing, food, wildlife, and communities. We’d love to hear from you and get your ideas as well.

San Juan: Mon., Dec. 12, 10:30 am -12 pm, Friends of San Juans office, 640 Mullis Street

Orcas: Wed., Dec. 14, 12:30-2 pm, 376 Conference room, 596 Main Street

Shaw: Wed., Dec. 14, 4-5 pm, Shaw Community Center

Lopez: Thu., Dec. 15, 10:30-12:00 pm, Lopez Library, 2225 Fisherman Bay Road

If you are unable to join us, feel free to call so we can talk. Or, host a similar conversation of your own and let us know if we can help.

2. Call on Washington’s Governor and federal delegation to communicate our opposition to the Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain pipeline expansion to the Canadian Federal decision makers and B.C. Provincial officials – click here to keep telling Canada no on the Kinder Morgan Pipeline! Canadian officials have made a decision that threatens the environment and economy of Washington. The massive Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain pipeline threatens our shared waters, shared economies, shared climate, and the Southern Resident orcas. The pipeline would result in a nearly seven-fold increase in dangerous tar sands oil tanker traffic through the Salish Sea. We need to keep telling Canada that we will not accept the 800% increase in the risk of a 20,000 barrel or larger oil spill over the next ten years in Haro Strait/Boundary Pass. It’s not over yet, and Friends remains steadfastly engaged with the issue with the many organizations and tribes who oppose the project. We will keep you posted on all opportunities that need your involvement and voice.

3. Support Friends’ Safe Shipping program. Sadly, the Kinder Morgan approval wasn’t a surprise. While Friends is dedicated to preventing fossil fuel export from degrading the Salish Sea, we also need to be prepared for increased shipping so we can be proactive about protecting our San Juan Island waterways and Salish Sea from vessel traffic risks. We are currently working to press for oil spill prevention and advocate for a clean energy future; achieve legal protections; improve habitat management; and reduce threats to vulnerable species. Click here to make a gift to the Safe Shipping program and our annual fund—all dollars received before the end of the year will be matched, up to $25,000.

Thank you for your support and your voice! Together, our voices make a difference!

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Friends of the San JuansCanada Approved the Kinder Morgan Project – What’s next?

Plastic Bag Ban Passes in San Juan County!

by Friends of the San Juans on October 26, 2016 No comments

On October 25th, the San Juan County Council passed an ordinance that will ban single use plastic bags in the county as of May 1, 2017! Thank you to everyone who helped make this happen – Friday Harbor and Spring Street International middle schoolers who testified at the hearing (and pictured above), Friends supporters who signed our petition, all three councilmen who voted yes, Mark Herrenkohl (Solid Waste Program Administrator), the Solid Waste Advisory Committee and the many other community members who rallied around this important ordinance that will help protect our marine environment!

Click here to learn more about the ordinance.

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Friends of the San JuansPlastic Bag Ban Passes in San Juan County!

Shell Pulled Its Oil-By-Rail Project in Anacortes!

by Friends of the San Juans on October 19, 2016 No comments

Shell Puget Sound Refinery announced on October 6 that it is dropping its plans to construct a crude oil-by-rail facility at March Point near Anacortes. This proposal will no longer threaten communities across the Northwest by increasing the risk of derailments, devastating explosions, and toxic spills in Padilla Bay and the larger Salish Sea.

This decision follows the stand taken by Friends and our partner organizations to successfully appeal Skagit County’s determination of non-significance in 2014, which then required the project to undergo an environmental impact study. Thousands of citizens showed up to hearings, submitted public comments, and rallied to voice concerns about the dangers of transporting highly volatile Bakken crude in trains.

This win is a testament to the power and the dedication of community members.  Here in the Pacific NW, we have the wind behind us in fighting fossil fuels. When we appealed the inadequate environmental review, many said it was unstoppable. By joining together, we proved we can protect ourselves from Big Oil!

If you’re in Seattle on October 26, join in the “sHell No Celebration” at 6:30 p.m at Peddler Brewing Company.  Click here for details and to RSVP.

Check out this article, West Coast Deals Four Major Blows to Big Oil, for more details on how communities are successfully standing up to the dangers of fossil fuel export.

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Friends of the San JuansShell Pulled Its Oil-By-Rail Project in Anacortes!