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4 thoughts on “Kongsgaard departs Puget Sound Partnership; Manning assumes chair

  1. Well done to Martha Kongsgaard!

    But this statement triggers my curiosity: “Meanwhile, as Puget Sound’s Indian tribes contend, “we are losing the battle for salmon recovery, because the rate of habitat loss continues to outpace our restoration efforts,” she said.”

    Since the State has implemented the Shoreline Management Act requirements and there are no shortage of permits needed to do any work around the State shorelines, I have not been seeing the habitat loss, but I’ve seen significant restoration efforts.

    Be informative to have the Kitsap Sun do a show and tell where the habitat losses have been occurring since 2007 since the PSP was formed … the restoration efforts seem to be getting all the media coverage.

    1. Robert,

      I’ll have to ask Martha where this idea comes from. I have not seen the data, although I have heard this comment about habitat loss from many people. This is what the 2015 State of the Sound report says:

      ACCOUNTING OF HABITAT LOSS AND GAINS

      Five Vital Signs are classified under the Protect and Restore Habitats goal that provide measures of habitat extent, restoration activities, and pressures. However, for a given habitat, the Vital Sign indicators often present a somewhat incomplete portrayal of the gains and losses of habitat over time. For instance, the indicators of riparian and estuary restoration help gauge habitat gains over time. However, there are no Vital Sign indicators accounting for the degradation or loss of these key habitats. As a result, there is no information in this report on whether these types of habitats are disappearing faster than are being protected or restored. Knowing the net impact of restoration, protection, degradation, and loss of habitat over time is essential not only for understanding the status of other indicators such as Chinook salmon and forage fish, but also the overall accomplishments of Puget Sound recovery efforts.

      There are important nuances to each Vital Sign indicator that are not conveyed in the high-level indicator summaries in Table 1 and Table 2. These summaries can mask important local improvements resulting from successful protection and restoration efforts. The opposite is true as well: local declines as a result of pressures damaging to the environment may be occurring and should be revealed to better inform recovery efforts.

      1. Thank you Chris. I have the 2015 State of the Sound report and asked about habitat loss and where it was happening during one of their open house presentations, and I got what I would call a blank answer. My point to them was regulations control habitat loss, and if habitat loss is in fact happening on a significant scale, then PSP needs to know what needs to be changed in the regulatory world to either stop or slow the degradation. I was pretty much met with a blank stare and an un-huh.
        I too hear consistent claims of habitat loss especially related to the salmon population issue, but but I suspect it might be more of a “follow the money” issue. There are multiple million$ being spent on habitat restoration each year, and to keep the money flowing, there has to be a problem to solve. Habitat restoration is fine, but the public integrity question is whether habitat is being lost faster than it is being restored, or if that’s “fake news” that the public is being fed to keep consultants and contractors who are employed in habitat restoration employed, and the tribes perhaps deflecting some attention to the real reasons salmon populations have been declining.
        Realize this is also a tangent issue to the real story of the quality work done by Martha Kongsgaard … I don’t want this one issue to detract from her dedication and quality efforts to improve Puget Sound.

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