A Salish Sea Victory! Let’s Keep Going!

Safe Shipping Success! Our collective orca voices helped our neighbors in Whatcom County make a landmark decision that is a victory for all of us in the Salish Sea! 

On Tuesday, July 27, Whatcom County Council voted to prohibit all new fossil fuel refineries and trans-shipment facilities (more vessel traffic) at Xwe’chi’eXen, Cherry Point. The new land-use regulation – an amendment to Whatcom County’s Comprehensive Plan – also requires stricter environmental review for modifications to existing fossil fuel facilities.

Please thank the Council for making this historic decision (contact info below). Their action will keep the water between us safer for humans and orca alike. 

If our neighbors in Whatcom County can achieve this momentous protection through their Comp Plan, then just think what we can accomplish to protect the land, shorelines and waters of the San Juans. San Juan County (or any county) can learn from Whatcom’s example. We, too, can proactively protect our islands’ natural resources through our own land-use policies.

Now is the time! The San Juan County’s own Comprehensive Plan is being updated and our regulators need to hear our orca voices. Otherwise, they will make decisions about our islands’ future without us.
For “Comp Plan 101”, please watch the San Juan Islands Community Network videos explaining the update process and how our voices can make a difference, including the opportunity to join the Friends of the San Juans Comp Plan Action Team:

Part 1: The Comp Plan and its Update Set the Terms for SJ County into the Future


Part 2: Public Comment on the Comp Plan, and How to be Effective


TO LEARN more about the Comp Plan Action Team: 


Good work, Safe Shippers! The orcas thank you!



RE Sources: ‘In historic vote, Whatcom County Council approves landmark policy to regulate fossil fuel industry, protect Salish Sea’


Salish Current: ‘Years in the making, amendments ban new fossil-fuel industries, new shipping terminals at Cherry Point’


The Guardian: ‘Washington state county is first in US to ban new fossil fuel infrastructure’



CONTACT Whatcom County Council:

Mail: 311 Grand Avenue, Suite 105, Bellingham WA 98225; Phone: 360-778-5010; Email: council@co.whatcom.wa.us