How protecting orcas starts with tech

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While protecting Southern Resident orcas will require a variety of tools and approaches, Washington State Ferries plans to contribute by bringing tech out on the water.

One of the newest tools is an online system through WSF that exchanges real-time information about whales in the Salish Sea.

Kevin Bartoy, environmental stewardship and sustainability program manager at WSF, said the agency can feed data from a public whale sighting app (Whale Report App) into the Whale Report Alert System. This alert and reporting system will give commercial mariners alerts about a whale’s location in real time. Then, marine operators can either minimize the vessel’s noise or avoid collision with marine mammals by changing course.

“It’s something that will become more robust over time as we get more of that commercial maritime sector reporting in,” Bartoy said. “The more information we have coming in that’s verified, the better situational awareness we have on the water. We can be a leader that other people will follow.”

Read the rest of the story on the governor's Medium page.

Media Contacts

Tara Lee
Governor Inslee’s Communications Office