The most succinct discussion of Bremerton’s SMP underlying philosophy can be found in the Cumulative Effects Analysis dated May 15 2012, Sec. 1, Page 2:
“It is not known, at this time, whether general trends in ecological degradation from human disturbance are continuing to result in incremental degradation of ecological functions or whether localized ecosystems have reached a stable condition. There is no scientific consensus on appropriate indicators of ecological productivity and no comprehensive means of monitoring. Based on the continuing trends of declines in key aquatic species in Puget Sound over several decades, the most justifiable conclusion is that existing land use and practices within watersheds and along shorelines are continuing to degrade habitat and trends will continue unless substantial changes in practices are implemented in many areas.”
“Specific ongoing contributions to nearshore degradation that will likely continue, unless substantial changes are made to physical facilities, include:
- Existing practices in managing ornamental vegetation, such as use of fertilizers, herbicides, and pesticides, adversely affect not only the nearshore food chain, but also have adverse impacts on the central nervous system functions of fish, including salmonids.
- Shoreline bulkheads have negative impacts on substrate through interfering with natural recruitment sources, especially on feeder bluffs; in some cases, they produce a high energy environment because of reflective wave action and also contribute to the absence of shoreline vegetation.
- The lack of native vegetation on the shoreline likely contributes to the absence of a nearshore food chain, and also results in higher nearshore temperatures due to the lack of shade.
- Current docks and other moorage facilities contribute to predation and also may cause avoidance behavior in salmonids by forcing them out of nearshore environments and into environments where food and shelter are less available and where predation is increased.
Read the Bremerton Shoreline Cumulative Effects Analysis (DRAFT) May 15 2012