Mout Ashland Closure
7:17 am
Mon March 17, 2014

A Lost Season For An Oregon Ski Area

Mount Ashland has four chairlifts that typically run through their normal December thru mid-April season.
Credit Ben Haley

Southern Oregon’s Mount Ashland announced Friday that it won’t open at all this season because of a lack of snow.

This is the first canceled season in the ski area's fifty-year history.

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Lamprey Dams
7:02 am
Mon March 17, 2014

Swim, Lamprey, Swim!

The Lamprey is a jawless fish which has a toothy, funnel-like mouth.
Credit USFWS Pacific

An eel-like fish native to the Northwest can now more easily make it up the Columbia River. Managers at the Columbia’s McNary Dam have installed a new passage system for Pacific lamprey – the first of its kind for the toothy fish.

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Columbia River Treaty
5:25 pm
Fri March 14, 2014

Canada, U.S. Disagree Over Value of Columbia River Treaty Benefits

The Columbia River's Chief Joseph Dam near Bridgeport, Washington. The dam is operated by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.
Credit U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Digital Visual Library

British Columbia has staked out a negotiating position on a cross-border water treaty that puts it at odds with public utilities and rate payers in the U.S. Northwest. At issue is whether and how to renew the 50-year-old Columbia River Treaty. 

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Marijuana Regulation
4:52 pm
Fri March 14, 2014

Washington Governor Expresses ‘Surprise’ Medical Marijuana Regulation Failed

Governor Jay Inslee speaks with reporters at a news conference following the adjournment of the Washington Legislature.
Credit Austin Jenkins / Northwest News Network

Washington Governor Jay Inslee says he is surprised and disappointed medical marijuana regulation died in the state Legislature this year. 

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Wanapum Dam
8:00 am
Fri March 14, 2014

Worried Washington Farmers Plead For Help To Water Fruit Trees

Pear growers say they’re already spraying their orchards and they need plenty of water for that.
Credit quisnovus/Flickr

In central Washington, state officials and farmers alike are scrambling to save orchards at risk of drying up because of a drawdown of the Columbia River. Wanapum Dam has a major crack. Nearly 100 worried irrigators packed an informational meeting in Wenatchee Thursday night.

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Shellfish Import Ban
7:50 am
Fri March 14, 2014

Chinese and U.S. Officials To Discuss China's Shellfish Import Ban

China instituted the ban when officials found high levels of arsenic and a naturally occurring biotoxin in two samples of geoduck.
Credit Cedric Sam/Flickr

China banned shellfish imports from most of the West Coast in December over concerns about contamination.

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Washington Legislature
7:42 am
Fri March 14, 2014

Washington Legislature Adjourns Without Action On Medical Marijuana, Gas Tax

The floor of the Washington Senate on the last night of the 60-day session
Credit Austin Jenkins

The Washington legislature adjourned its 60-day session just before midnight Thursday night. This was Senate Floor Leader Joe Fain.

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Food Stamp Cutbacks
6:08 pm
Thu March 13, 2014

Some Northwest States Working to Offset Federal Food Stamp Cutbacks

A woman using her EBT card in Portland, Ore., to purchase food.
Credit Brian Duss / Bread for the World

In Olympia, Washington policymakers are pondering whether to make an end run around looming cutbacks in the federally-funded food stamp program. This would mimic what Oregon and three eastern states just decided to do. 

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healthcare
5:37 pm
Thu March 13, 2014

Deadline Approaches For Healthcare Exchange Enrollment

You only have until the end of this month to sign up for coverage using one of the new health insurance exchanges.
Credit wikimedia

You only have until the end of this month to sign up for coverage using one of the new health insurance exchanges. And if you’re planning to do it online at the last minute, how easy that will be depends on where you live in the Northwest. 

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Forest Privatization
5:21 pm
Thu March 13, 2014

Conservationists Say They'll Sue Over Privatization Of State Forest

Conservation groups object to the potential privatization of the Elliott State Forest in Oregon's coast range.
Credit Oregon Department of Forestry

Conservation groups want timber companies to know they'll sue if an endangered seabird's habitat is threatened by logging. The groups object to the potential privatization of the Elliott State Forest in Oregon's coast range.

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