Aquatic Lands Update Masthead
The Washington State Department of Natural Resources (DNR) manages 2.6 million acres of state-owned aquatic lands as a public trust for people of Washington. This e-newsletter, published by DNR's Aquatic Resources Division, is intended to provide information about state-owned aquatic lands, stewardship measure to protect aquatic lands, and emerging issues that affect these lands.

In this issue:


panelGovernor's panel on ocean acidity urges immediate action 

Gov. Chris Gregoire and Commissioner of Public Lands Peter Goldmark
Gov. Chris Gregoire and Peter Goldmark, Commissioner of Public Lands. Photo: Dept. of Ecology

Since the industrial revolution, the burning of fossil fuels has increasingly introduced more carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. The oceans--and Puget Sound--have been absorbing much of this CO2, with troubling results: the oceans have become more acidic.


The implications are far-reaching, and the shellfish industry is already experiencing the effects of high acidity. Earlier this week, the Governor's Blue Ribbon Panel on Ocean Acidification released their recommendations for addressing high acidity in the state's marine waters.  


Commissioner of Public Lands Peter Goldmark served on the panel, and DNR will be very involved in the collaborative effort to better understand the science behind ocean acidity and what can be done to prevent the continual rise in acidity.



draftDraft Quartermaster Harbor mooring buoy plan ready for public review

Boats in Dockton, Quartermaster Harbor
Boats in Dockton, Quartermaster Harbor. Photo: DNR


DNR is asking boaters, Vashon and Maury islands community members, and other interested citizens to comment on a draft mooring buoy plan for state-owned aquatic lands in Quartermaster Harbor. The draft plan is also available for review through the State Environmental Policy Act (SEPA). The deadline for comments on the plan and the SEPA review is January 7, 2013.



DNR has scheduled a public meeting on December 6 in Vashon to explain the draft plan further and to provide an opportunity for public comment.




hcpProgress Report: Aquatic Lands Habitat Conservation Plan

In September, we completed the internal DNR review of the draft Aquatic Lands Habitat Conservation Plan (HCP) and submitted the plan for review to the two federal service agencies (U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service and NOAA Marine Fisheries). We expect to hear back from the services in December. Once we receive their comments, we will prepare the next draft HCP for public review, tentatively scheduled for the spring of 2013. At the beginning of the new year, we'll also conduct government-to-government discussions regarding the HCP with Washington's Treaty Tribes


More about the Aquatic Lands HCP...


Speaking of the HCP, we are looking for an experienced technical editor to prepare the plan for public review. Interested parties can download the Request for Qualifications and Quotations (RFQQ). To locate the RFQQ from this link, open the drop-down menu and select: "Natural Resources, Department of"; then, select the item titled: "Technical Editor DNR Aquatic Lands HCP." The deadline to submit the RFQQ is December 12.



lesseeSpotlight on Aquatic Lands Lessee: City of Shelton's wastewater treatment expansion

Workers move new outfall into place. Photo: City of Shelton

The City of Shelton deserves kudos for its newly expanded and upgraded state-of-the-art wastewater treatment plant. As a lessee of state-owned aquatic lands, the city has demonstrated good stewardship by committing to improving water quality through state-of-the-art technology.



jarpaLeasing aquatic lands now more streamlined

If you are planning a project that takes place on or over state-owned aquatic lands, you will need an authorization from DNR. In addition, you will likely need permits from other local, state, and federal agencies. Knowing just which permits you need can be confusing.


This past summer, the state made improvements to the application process. Now, you only need to visit one website to apply for a DNR authorization and the appropriate permits.



Have you used the new JARPA process to lease state-owned aquatic lands? Let us know how the process worked for you. Contact Hugo Flores, 360-902-1126.


DNR on Facebook: Are you a fan?

Help DNR reach its goal of 4,000 Facebook fans by the end of 2012! Check out our Facebook page. If you like what you see, sign up to be a fan.


Thanks for your support!


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Questions about what you've read in this e-newsletter? Send us an email.

November 2012
Whidbey Island 
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