LakeWhatcom Logo Precious Water in a Glass, (c)2008 by Rekah
logo: Rekah
Protect the Lake Whatcom Drinking Water Reservoir
The Watershed Is Not Being Preserved!     Consider the Consequences in Health and Cost!
speak to us:
(We know this website needs to be updated. Working on it.)
LakeWhatcom photo by Char
photo: Char
Home |  New Visitor Overview |  The Dam |  About Us |  Problems |  History |  (old) SiteMap | 
rainbow-bar divider
Troubles in the Reservoir:
Existing urbanization is still the major cause of the pollution which is detrimental to the water quality of the Reservoir. But, there are still watershed areas where additional development is being done or planned.
Muddy Runoff from a Storm

From the KING-5 TV helicopter A few weeks ago (early 2009) another sudden rainstorm hit the Lake Whatcom Reservoir watershed basin. Heavy rains flow over the ground, especially over open soils, and gather silt and chemicals - becoming muddy. Then dozens of such little gully-flows combine in a creek, and it gushes downhill until it spews out into the Lake - a muddy mess.

(click to see larger image)
Muddy runoff enters lake

I could not tell just where this image was taken, but the important thing is that it happens -- and can be avoided.

A reader recently took a photo of a concrete boat-launch ramp in the Geneva area.

He asks, as should we all, how was this construction authorized?

new ramp
click for larger image

Information from another reader says that this ramp is NOT new.
But the newness is a small factor - the important thing is the impact on the water of everything constructed within the watershed. An impervious concrete surface running into the water, likely used by powered vehicles, is a prime channel for contaminants entering the reservoir. Perhaps this site would be an excellent volunteer demo installation, by the owner, for runoff-capture and treatment. (comments updated late Monday May 5th)

Sewage Spilled, Again

Once again, there has been a spillage of untreated sanitary sewage into the waters which drain into our Lake Whatcom Drinking Water Reservoir. The LWWSD has a failure in the wee hours of Sunday Morning (Sept 7, 2008), according to The Bellingham Herald.

Things like this make the lake even more polluted. They happen because there is urbanization within the watershed - If there are no sewage pipes in an area, they will never break.

The trouble-spot of February '08 was another Sewage Spill in LWWSD System

Once again, the LWWSD Sewage System had a spill in February, which put pollution into the Reservoir.

Wastewater spilled out of the sewer system after a water reservoir overflowed into a sanitary sewer system at Strawberry Canyon Pump Station Feb. 27, said Jim Neher, general manager of the Lake Whatcom Water and Sewer District.

They have said that the problem was - that there was an equipment failure. We say that really - the presence of sewage and the equipment to deal with it IS the problem.

Two letters to our Councils.
Problems - Pollution-routes and land-groups
See the four groupings..."F", "CC", "D", "U".

But one answer I got back is pathetic pablum! Read some extracts.

The trouble-spot of August was the Fire District at the south end: (article in The Herald)
See location:
Parcel 370429536479

Where is this Algae Bloom?

Someone provided me with this aerial photo of an algae bloom on the a lake.
This seems to be in a little remote, stagnant bay - I am not sure just where this is (but it just might be Lake Terrell.)

But can anyone tell me what the reaction will be as it creeps up onto the shorelines of the populated areas?

Try: "Hey, City (or County) ! I am outraged that this slimy goo in YOUR Lake is creeping up on my lovely shorefront lawn! This ain't supposed to happen - and just WHEN are you going to do something about it?"

He might go on to ask: "Just imagine -- what stuff like this would do to my resale value, when I decide to escape from it and sell out!"

Who does What
The Jurisdictions, etc

Several years ago, we compiled a list of all the agencies and programs, which seemed to have responsibility or authority over the water quality in the LW Reservoir watershed.

Even citizens can be part of the defense against the degradation of the water quality in the Reservoir.

Flushing the Reservoir with Nooksack River water, as proposed by some, is not the answer!

We have repeatedly heard and recently read the idea to "solve" the pollution of the Lake Whatcom Reservoir by flushing it with water diverted from the Middle Fork of the Nooksack River.

Sorry, that is not a solution.

Read the full story

The best solutions to Reservoir pollution are:
  • Do not let pollution even get on the ground or in your runoff water in the first place.
  • If it does get on the ground or in your water, keep it on your property parcel.
  • If it flows off your parcel, it must be treated (at public expense and little effectiveness.)

See the flow-chart, in Excel. Thus, even if no new pollution entered, and the "flushing" were perfect, it would take 50 years to replace the water. Finally, it is one more example of allowing harmful actions to continue, and trying to ignore them here by trashing your neighbors "there".

Flushing? No Sale!

A discussion was ongoing on the YahooGroup about Goose-poop.

Is Goose-poop detrimental? Can the geese be shooed-away? Should they be captured - then what?

One member contributed a paper done by Rutgers Univ Extension Service ("Rutgers goose euthanization study") which only addresses the last question. download it here - (PDF 2 pages)

Further info told us that the best action is a division at the shoreline between the water, and the lawn. The geese don't like a wall or prickly plants, so they go elsewhere. (Your problem "solved" - passed down to the neighbor.)

Trouble-Spots Links:       (listed in north-south order
       - see map)


Agate Bay


North Shore Estates

Birch Street - Silver Beach

Sudden Valley

Southwest Sewerline & South Bay

Blue Canyon of September 2007

Watershed Trouble Spots Map

More destruction [reported] on County land.

Mr. Michael McFarlane
Parks Dept Director,
Whatcom County
July 19 2007

Dear Mr. McFarlane,

Can you tell me what your department is doing to prevent more destruction of trees and bushes on Whatcom County Park Land on the lake side of Blue Canyon road as has been reported several times today by Rita Foley?

1. Is it your policy to ignore this type of destruction?

2. Will you make the land owner responsible RESTORE the land and trees to its original state and pursue criminal prosecution?

You can contact resident Rita Foley at ___-____ for more information about this repeated incursion and destruction of County Park lands.

I look forward to your written reply.
Tim Paxton
Clean Water Alliance
click to read the gracious and informative response by Mr McFarlane. (We appreciate that the answer was emailed at 10:56PM ! We just hope that it was accurate.)

Whatcom County Water Resources Management
A Plan -- and there was a meeting

Integrated Water Resources Management
Download Document (MS-Word)
New County Stormwater Plan

Final Lake Whatcom Comprehensive Stormwater Plan now available...
Click for Plan at County - in 14 pieces

Chip Anderson
Sr. Planner
Whatcom County Public Works
2011 Young St. Ste. 201
(360) 715-7450
(360) 715-7451 fax

Our copy of Exec Summary- PDF - 2.4MB

New County Stormwater Plan

Final Lake Whatcom Comprehensive Stormwater Plan now available...
Click for Plan at County - in 14 pieces

Chip Anderson
Senior Planner
Whatcom County Public Works
2011 Young St. Ste. 201
(360) 715-7450
(360) 715-7451 fax

Our copy of Exec Summary- PDF - 2.4MB

County Stormwater Management Plan - (new DRAFT
Nov 13th 2007)

link to Plan Docs

Whatcom County Public Works presented its “Draft” Comprehensive Lake Whatcom Stormwater Management Plan at a public meeting Nov. 13, 2007
Comments on the plan were able to be given for another week after that --
Chip Anderson
Sr. Planner
Whatcom County Public Works
2011 Young St. # 201
(360) 715-7450
(360) 715-7451 fax

State Rules on Stormwater Manuals

The WA DoE (Ecology) has just issued new info-webpages for cities and counties who have customized Stormwater Manuals.

Click for website

Squalicum Mountain - Violations?

Stop-Work orders were issued may have been issued by the agencies involved (Whatcom County Planning), and we are told that work may have paused. Diligent citizen observation and reporting are still needed, for the several Vineyard-Squalicum areas Projects.

Big Development, right close to the Lake Shore

Rearing it's head again, the North Shore Estates Project is reported to be back into the chainsaw and bulldozer phase. Maybe they got all their clearances and approvals, and we are seeking verification of the propriety of the lot platting process reportedly used. But the simple existence of such an urbanization project so close to the Lake, shows why the rules need to be changed.

Warning: include() [function.include]: Filename cannot be empty in /home/lwhatcom/public_html/old-news.php on line 86

Warning: include() [function.include]: Filename cannot be empty in /home/lwhatcom/public_html/old-news.php on line 86

Warning: include() [function.include]: Failed opening '' for inclusion (include_path='.:/usr/lib/php:/usr/local/lib/php') in /home/lwhatcom/public_html/old-news.php on line 86
If you hear of something positive, please.....   e-mail to: webmaster .)

Household Hazardous Waste Collection was done in the
Lake Whatcom Reservoir Watershed

Saturday May 10
in Sudden Valley & Bloedel-Donovan Park
City and County Removed Eleven Tons of Household Hazardous Waste from Lake Whatcom Watershed

People could bring upto 55 gallons/vehicle

click here to Download Waste Collection Poster with details

Guest Editorial by Susan Kane-Ronning

The Bellingham Herald today (May 30 2008) ran a Guest Editorial by local activist Susan Kane-Ronning.

Susan closes with: "...Preserving Lake Whatcom isn’t a partisan issue, it’s a financial issue. In the current culture of economical stress, taxpayers should be concerned that the rising stormwater retrofit costs could have been minimized had our elected officials taken proactive steps earlier. Effective governance takes hindsight, insight, and foresight. Instead, our governing bodies can beg forgiveness and issue rhetorical excuses while we pay the price...."

We believe that she is right, and we will add that the sooner and the better that real "wet-water" fixes are done, the cheaper and better it will be for 95,000 water-drinkers and all the affected taxpayers.

Read Editorial

How about action?........?
The City and the LWWSD - Do What?

At a meeting April 30th, the LWWSD agreed to hold off on building a large new facility for themselves, to study some kind of merger with the City.

Click for the Herald's article for May 1st
"...district commissioners rejected construction bids this morning for their new facilities...."

Local Planning
The Silver Beach Neighborhood Association (SBNA), which has the shoreline of Lake Whatcom within the City, has revised their Neighborhood Plan.
Here is the latest document. (click - PDF DOC Nov 15,2007)
Open-Houses to present and vote on the plan were held in September and October. Regrettably, a few people "crashed the party", after not even participating in the preparation of the draft plan, and simply voted "No". We perceive that the orchestrated objection at the October meeting belies their claim at the meeting, that they were "not informed" that the process was going on. Sad.

You may download the FINAL SBNA Neighborhood Plan file (Nov 2007):
You may also download the DRAFT Plan (Sept 2007):

See also their website: The SB Neighborhood Association: SBNA

Stormwater Runoff Computer-Model

When rain falls on your houselot (or anywhere) where does that water "FIRST" go?
Some surfaces do not soak up water, so some of it evaporates and some runs off. The soil does grab some of the water - then it evaporates, gets used by plants, or soaks down into the subsoil.

And the rest runs off over the surface and in gullies and creeks. How much?

Download this (early-draft) Excel computer-model, and enter YOUR OWN numbers - see the results.

Or - download a more-detailed version of the model, you may better define sub-areas,

(Note: In development - your feedback requested.

How about your own property?

The City [is] was planning a small-grants program for stormwater treatment on individual properties.

Announced in early May at the Silver Beach Neighborhood Association meeting, the CoB wants to find a few properties which are suitable for installation of small facilities which will hold runoff water in the soil within the properties. Thus, the chemicals which are in the water will remain upland, and not reach the Lake.

We [will post] would have posted here the contact at the City, when the details are determined. But, sadly, the program foundered.

No City of SV
The BRB (Boundary Review Board) ruled that the Sudden Valley private resort/residential development may not become a city - their application for that process was denied.

This is judged to be good news for the water quality, by this website. The story of the decision is available elsewhere.

New City Report - Surprising!

The good part of the bad news.

In this glossy April 2007 report, titled "Stewards of Lake Whatcom", the City has finally said out loud that the Lake is getting worse, faster than ever before.

Old News:
Official Comments on the LW Reservoir Plan by Sue Kaun

The Joint Management Team has issued the Draft LWR Management Plan, and called for Public Comments.
Please see the comments by Sue Kaun.

The ICT - Public Meeting April 2010

The three jurisdictions of the ICT(*) met on Tuesday, April 20th, 2010, for the first step in approving the work plan for 2010-2014 on the Lake Whatcom Reservoir and watershed.

The principal speakers were Jon Hutchings, of Whatcom County and Clare Fogelsong, of CoB.

(*) Interjurisdictional Coordinating Team - Whatcom County, City of Bellingham & the Lake Whatcom Water & Sewer District.

Click this link below ("Plan") to download the PDF's of the Plan presentation. (These are the official versions, in .PDF format)

AccomplishmentsDRAFT_Staff_Final.pdf - 846Kb

Draft_LW_2010_2014 Work Plan Staff Final.pdf - 1,638Kn

A Blog-Entry about Watershed Stormwater Projects

There is an interesting new posting on the Blog "Latte Republic", run by Elizabeth Britt.

Now, the webmaster here has not always agreed with Elizabeth on political issues in the past, although we have always been respectul and cordial.

But clean drinking water (and lower costs for achieving that) are issues for everybody, and I am appreciative of the comments and concerns expressed there. It feels like there has been some knowledgable contributions to the topic of what works well for reducing phosphorus entering the Reservoir, and where certain things might work well and where certain things might not work so well.

Go take a peek, and contribute your facts, beliefs and opinions there if you wish and for posting here -- send to:

More to follow.

The ICT - Public Meeting Feb 2009

The three jurisdictions of the ICT(*) met on Thursday, Feb 26th, 2009, for an update briefing on the status of the work on the Lake Whatcom Reservoir and watershed.

The principal speaker was Jon Hutchings, of Whatcom County



(*) Interjurisdictional Coordinating Team - Whatcom County, City of Bellingham & the Lake Whatcom Water & Sewer District.

Click this image below ("Today's Objectives") to download the PowerPoint slideshow of the presentation. (This is the official version, in .PPT format - 5.3 Mb)


Flooding of Olsen Creek

The rains of early January 2009 have caused flooding.
See new Photos of Silver Beach Creek Overflows

Here is the location and the graph of a flow-gauge just off Northshore Road beyond the Y-Road junction.
(Click on thumbnails for larger images.)


The flow increased rapidly starting Sunday afternoon, January 4, 2009, and has now continued very high for nine days, with little prospect for substantial reduction. This graph is derived from successive 8-day charts at the USGS website, where it is updated automatically.

As the storm passed, the flow has returned to "normal". Here is a 45-day look at this large-flow period.


Also, here is a photo of the gage location.

This second graph, for Anderson Creek at the far south end of the Lake, is from the same USGS website, late on January 7th, 2009:

Such large flows carry sediment - containing the undesirable nutrient phosphorus and other chemicals - into the Lake.

The NSE Project Tries to rise again - the City Appeals

The City has filed a suit against the County, since the County is trying to approve the North Shore Estates development.

The Court Hearing was on Wednesday, Dec 10th, 2008 in the chambers of the County Council.

Download and Read the Base Document, in 14 JPG images
- pages 01-14 ""

Download and Read the Full Court Document
- 69 pages "prehearing.pdf"

The Essence:
On March 26. 2008, the Board of Commissioners for the Lake Whatcom Water and Sewer District approved a second developer extension agreement with the developers of North Shore Estates. They did this despite objections from the City of Bellingham and the Department of Ecology that such an agreement was illegal. Now. the County and the District are at a Stand-off- claiming the other has the responsibility to prove the agreement is legal. Because the County ultimately has that authority, the City of Bellingharn respectfully requests the Hearing Examiner to reverse decision of the County, and conclude that the April 2006 developer extension agreement is invalid and unenforceable.

DATED this 26th day of November, 2008,

Very Big News - the TMDL Report

The State Dept of Ecology has finally issued the long-awaited TMDL Report.
Read the Abstract

The is the thousand ton hammer. It is time for some heavy lifting now, folks, on all four corners of the bedsheet the Lake's been sleeping on.

Bellingham Herald Headline Story

Click for Ecology's general info page on TMDL's (Lake Whatcom's item is not yet listed - since it is still in bureaucratic process.)

Moratorium News !!

The Bellingham City Council held a Public Hearing on Monday July 14, 2008, 7:00PM to take public comment on the following:


Anyone wishing to comment on this topic was invited to attend. Written comments received before 10:00 AM, July 9 would be included in the agenda packet. Written comments received after that time will be distributed to Council but not included in the published meeting materials. Send comments to the Council Office, 210 Lottie St, or email to, or FAX to 778-8101.

More information on the Moratorium can be found at: or contact Kurt Nabbefeld at 778-8351 or at

Click for copy of Ordinance establishing the moratorium (PDF)

NEWS: Ecology releases the TMDL Study-- click

Reconveyance - Land Swap Deal

County Closes Review Panel

The Panel meetings have concluded.

Shall the County assume management of thousands of acres as "Parklands", which the State has been managing for decades as harvesable forestry? What are the good parts of that and how bad might the uncertain parts be?

Some answers came, but uncertainties remain! Feb=March 2008 - DRAFT Deal

Reconveyance Documents (March 13) - do they answer YOUR questions?
Click here for an abstract of these files

Click on each link to download the file:
DNR & County Press Release
Map "before"
Map "after"
and a useful

A Park is looking better, as the best use of these Watershed lands.

The Lake Whatcom Reservoir Watershed lands will best preserve the water quality of the lake if they are kept in perpetual, well-managed natural forest lands.
End of story.

Every rational, unbiased review will come to that conclusion.

There's going to be lots more discussion and action on this idea, we guarantee you.

Press Release:
From: "Joe Bates"
To: <>
Subject: Reconveyance Informational Meeting

On the Proposal to Transfer Forest Board Lands In and Around the Lake Whatcom Reservoir Watershed for Park Purposes

Whatcom County will be considering requesting the transfer of approximately 8,000 acres of DNR forest board lands in and around the Lake Whatcom Reservoir watershed for use as a park reserve. The proposed park would be developed and managed for passive recreation similar to other County Park areas like the Stimpson Family Nature Reserve, Chuckanut Recreational Area and the Canyon Lake Community Forest.

The public is invited to an open house at the Bellingham Senior Activity Center between 6:00 PM and 8:00 PM on Thursday evening, September 11th to learn more about the proposal. County Parks & Recreation staff and representatives of the Department of Natural Resources will be on hand and available to answer questions.

When: Thursday evening, September 11th, Open House 6:00 PM-8:00 PM
Where: Bellingham Senior Activity Center, 315 Halleck St., Bellingham

For more information contact the Whatcom County Parks & Recreation Department at 733-2900

Joe Bates, Whatcom County Communications & Information Coordinator
360-676-6707x 52510
cell 360-220-6654

Sept. 23rd: County Council
Work Session on
Reconveyance Proposal
(decision will be delayed)

(the public will have 15 minutes)

The Agenda of the meeting:
From: Carl Weimer
Subject: Work Session on Reconveyance


Next Tuesday morning the Whatcom County Council's Natural Resources Committee will be reviewing the proposed reconveyance of land around Lake Whatcom. Below is the agenda for this work session. The agenda is very ambitious to allow for a variety of inputs, and to maximize the Council's ability to ask the questions of those present to help clarify this proposal to the Council before the Memorandum of Agreement with DNR is voted upon. This is not meant to be a public education session about reconveyance, but a council work session for the Council to gather the information they need to either make a decision or ask for more information.

The actual vote on the Memorandum of Agreement with the DNR has been removed from the agenda for the Council meeting on the 23rd. This was done because Council members Nelson and Crawford are going to be absent, and they have not yet had a chance to provide any input into this decision.

Feel free to attend, and if you have issues that are not adequately addressed by those asked to make presentations we will strive to include you under item #9 and during the Committee's question and answer portion.

Carl Weimer, Chairman
Natural Resources Committee
Whatcom County Council

Whatcom County Natural Resources Committee
Work Session on Reconveyance
9:30 - 11:00 AM Tuesday September 23rd
Whatcom County Courthouse, Council Chambers

  1. Michael McFarlane - Brief overview of the process, where we are at, costs & funding sources now and future - 10-15 minutes
  2. April Markiewicz - Overview of Advisory Committee process and recommendations - 5 minutes
  3. David Wallin - Water quality benefits of reconveyance - 5 minutes
  4. Rand Jack - The need for a conservation easement, how it would work, and costs - 5 minutes
  5. Russ Pfeiffer-Hoyt - Making junior taxing districts whole - 5 minutes
  6. Tom Westergreen - Impacts to the forest industry - 5 minutes
  7. Bellingham City Council - Recommendations & thoughts from our reservoir protection partners - 5 minutes
  8. Tom Pratum - Potential lake impacts of increased recreation and County management of forest land - 5 minutes
  9. Open it up to the public for other points of view/concerns - 15 minutes
  10. Council questions and dialogue with presenters - 30 minutes

Joint Councils
sad Session
Was Nov 1st

Here is the official agenda and materials for the Joint Lake Whatcom Meeting which sadly, only sorta' happened Thursday, Nov 1st.

Joint Management Plan?

Update - February 2008: Little has been seen on this.

The City and the County are bringing forward a new proposal for jointly managing the Lake Whatcom Reservoir.

With two days' notice, there was a proposal brought to the City Council on Oct 8th 2007: 2007-AB17625 ; which might be great and might be a bureaucratic nightmare. Which?

More logging on Northshore!

The DNR sold the rights to log ~37 acres of LWR watershed land, just above the start-point of the Northshore trail at the terminus of the Northshore Road.

See the map and the proposal, called "White Chanterelle".

- proposal. - Cover Letter.

Here is the White Chantrelle Timber Sale cut, showing the Lake below:

(click for full-size)

Candidates' Forum

The Silver Beach Neighborhood sits on the shores of Lake Whatcom. And the SBNA - the Association of and for that Neighborhood, has a special role in the caring for the Lake.
The SBNA also has a website.

There was a Candidates' Forum as the topic of the monthly meeting July 12th.

It was attended by five of the Mayoral candidates, and all three of the Ward 4 candidates. They were - (click for photo) for Mayor - Don Keenen, Bob Ryan, Dan Pike, Seth Fleetwood and Dan McShane. For (click for photo) Council Ward 4 - Stan Snapp, Don Gischer, and Damon Gray.

Also, there are some statements by some candidates, at: a page for that purpose.

Public Commentary in Herald Guest Editorial:

By Greg Kirsch:

We have all heard the old saying, "the three most important considerations in real estate are location, location, location." Well the old saw cuts two ways when we consider new development in the Lake Whatcom watershed. Even when considering the county's new park plan. more....

August City Club Program: Panel: What's the Matter with Lake Whatcom? (was Aug 27)

The Washington Dept. of Ecology has directed the City of Bellingham and Whatcom County to take drastic action to preserve the health of our water supply. A report by the Bellingham branch of Ecology says our community must reduce the impact of land development around Lake Whatcom by more than 70 percent. So far as public water supplies are concerned, a directive of this severity seems to be without precedent in our state.

Mayor Dan Pike and County Executive Pete Kremen discussed their options and answered questions posed by the audience, at the August 27th City Club Luncheon. The third member of the panel was the co-author of the controversial report, Steve Hood of the Dept. of Ecology. [news reporters did not ask public questons as had been announced. Someone (KVOS?) video-taped the program.]

We distributed a card with tickler keywords to the audience. Here it is:
Lake Whatcom Keywords:

reservoir - drinking water - health - the 21 Goals of 1992 - costs - algae - oxygen - bacteria - cancer agents - trihalomethanes - phosphorus - measurement - treatment - development - homes - roads - parks - motivation - enforcement - fear - lawsuits - development rights - transfer - purchase - flushing - dilution - diversion - wells - water-rights - exemptions - administration - studies - shelfart

Notes from the meeting will be posted here when available. Also, see the comments at NW-Citizen

Appeal of Waterline Extension

The Squalicum Community Association has appealed the decision of Whatcom County's Hearing Examiner, whichallowed Lake Whatcom Water & Sewer District to continue to expand water service. The Association states concern that this project would allow future urban level service within the watershed.

Click for Press Release

Talk About Doing Good (then Do It!)

A Guest Editorial in the B'ham Herald, June 10th, 2008, is by County Staff, citing the work they have done. A comment by notes that's nice, but what's actually needed is removal of P.

Click for "Whatcom View"

Click for our Response

Very good posts on NW Citizen

Post by g.h.; Comments by Weimer, Watts, Pratum, Mayberry, Karlberg, Hayes and others

Click for "Saving the Lake" Link

Protect Lake Whatcom: This website is maintained by a concerned citizen in honor of the spirit of Ruth, developed for a Citizens' Initiative brought forth in 1999, with the purpose of directing the City to implement Goal #2 of their own 21 Goals for the management and preservation of the Reservoir.
Copyright 1999-2008 ©  updated Oct 27, 2008
Our bottom-line principles are: Protect the water (supply & quality) in perpetuity -- maintain ecological viability of the lake for natural species -- distribute the financial burden fairly among those benefitting -- take immediate action if prudent -- take definitive action -- avoid actions which cut off future options.
     e-mail to: webmaster