Legislative Action Alert: Prevent Oil Spills & Protect Orcas!

This Thursday (2/7), the Senate Environment, Energy, and Technology Committee will vote to advance SB 5578, which will improve the safety of oil transportation in our state.

Please contact all the members of the Senate Environment, Energy, and Technology Committee (or at least the Chair, Sen. Reuven Carlyle) and urge them to vote YES on SB 5578 to protect our state from the risk of a catastrophic oil spill in our waters!

Sen. Reuven Carlyle, Chair (D), District 36 Sponsor [email protected] (360) 786-7670
Sen. Guy Palumbo, Vice Chair (D), District 1 Sponsor [email protected] (360) 786 – 7600
Sen. Mona Das (D), District 47 [email protected] (360) 786 – 7692
Sen. Joe Nguyen (D), District 34 [email protected] (360) 786 – 7667
Sen. Marko Liias (D), District 21 Sponsor [email protected] (360) 786 – 7640
Sen. John McCoy (D), District 38 Sponsor [email protected] (360) 786 – 7674
Sen. Lisa Wellman (D), District 41 [email protected] (360) 786 – 7641
Sen. Doug Ericksen (R), Ranking Member, District 42 [email protected] (360) 786 – 7682
Sen. Phil Fortunato (R), Assistant Ranking Member, District 31 [email protected]
(360) 786-7660
Sen. Tim Sheldon (D), Assistant Ranking Member, District 35 [email protected] (360) 786-7668
Sen. Andy Billig (D), District 3 Sponsor [email protected]
(360) 786-7604
Sen. Sharon Brown (R), District 8 [email protected] (360) 786-7614
Sen. Steve Hobbs (D), District 44 [email protected] (360) 786-7686
Sen. Ann Rivers (R), District 18 [email protected] (360) 786-7634
Sen. Shelly Short (R), District 7 [email protected]
(360) 786-7612

Here are all the emails ready to copy and paste:

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This legislation authorizes the Department of Ecology to adopt rules for an Emergency Response Towing Vessel to be situated in the San Juan Islands and increases requirements for tug escorts for oil tankers and articulated tug barges. Southern Resident orcas were listed as an endangered species in part because of this region’s oil spill risk. If Southern Resident orcas are present in the event of an oil spill, that could devastate their population. SB 5578 (and the companion bill, HB 1578) would reduce threats to Southern Resident orcas by improving the safety of oil transportation (based on the Southern Resident Orca Task Force recommendation 24).

Ecology’s most recent 2012 Cost Benefit and Least Burdensome Alternative Analysis concluded that a major oil spill in Washington State is estimated to cost 165,000 jobs and $10.8 billion in annual economic activity. However, in addition to being outdated, this analysis did not include any impacts to private properties on the shoreline and did not address any impacts from non-floating (e.g., Canadian tar sands and diluted bitumen) oil spills.

The costs of the oil spill prevention measures in this bill, including the cost of an Emergency Response Towing Vessel stationed in the San Juan Islands, are a small fraction of the costs of a major oil spill’s impacts to our state’s economic and environmental and cultural resources.

Thank you for your voice and support!

Joan and I love this tiny corner of paradise and know that Mother Nature needs all the help she can get. We are solidly friends of the Friends of the San Juans.

Jon and Joan Christoffersen

members, Shaw Island