Ashley Ahearn

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Animals
1:31 pm
Wed August 7, 2013

Climate Change Could Spell Final 'Chuckle' For Alpine Frog

The Cascades frog is found only in the alpine wetlands of the Pacific Northwest, though its range used to extend down to Northern California and up to British Columbia. Scientists are concerned its range will continue to shrink with climate change.
Ashley Ahearn KUOW

Originally published on Wed August 7, 2013 4:33 pm

Across the Western U.S., yearly areas of snowpack are decreasing, and researchers are trying to figure out what that means for everything that relies on the snowmelt — from farms to power plants to a little creature known as the Cascades frog.

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Alpine Frog
7:45 am
Wed August 7, 2013

Tracking An Alpine Frog That "Chuckles" And Beeps For Climate Change Research

Cascade Frog
Credit Greg Schechte, GregTheBusker

Way up in the mountains of the Northwest you’ll find a little amphibian known as the Cascades Frog. This frog thrives in alpine wetlands, which are dependent on snowmelt. But snowpacks are decreasing across the West. And scientists are trying to figure out how the frogs will adapt to their shrinking habitat. And they’re using some pretty interesting research methods to do that.

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Shellfish Toxin
5:11 pm
Wed July 24, 2013

Diarrhetic Shellfish Toxin Closes Beach In South Puget Sound For First Time

Scientists at the Washington Department of Health Lab in Shoreline test shellfish for toxins that come from harmful algal blooms.
Credit Ashley Ahearn / KUOW

Wednesday the Department of Health closed some shellfish beds in South Puget Sound for the first time due to elevated levels of Diarrhetic Shellfish toxin.The biotoxin made 3 people sick after eating mussels harvested in Sequim Bay in 2011.

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Dead Fish
4:57 pm
Thu July 11, 2013

Fish Hatchery On The Elwha Loses 50 Percent Of Fish To Failed Water Pump

The largest dam removal in U.S. history is running into problems. Over 200,000 fish were found dead at a hatchery on Washington's Elwha River after a water pump failed over the weekend.

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Vancouver Oil Terminal Postponed
7:10 am
Thu July 11, 2013

Vancouver Oil Terminal Could Be Postponed Following Quebec Tragedy

There are now 15 confirmed deaths in the oil train explosion that rocked a small town in Quebec Province over the weekend.

The tragedy has given the commissioners of the Port of Vancouver in Washington pause as they consider a proposal for a terminal to move oil from trains onto ships. Ashley Ahearn reports.

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Energy Exports
5:40 pm
Tue June 18, 2013

Coal Exports Debate Heads To Washington D.C.

The Army Corps announced that it will not consider climate change in its review of the three proposed coal export terminals in Washington and Oregon.
Credit Chris McKenna / Wikimedia Commons

The debate over coal exports in the Northwest moved to Washington D.C. Tuesday. Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn testified alongside representatives from the mining and natural gas industries in a congressional hearing about energy exports.

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Fin Whales
6:35 pm
Thu May 16, 2013

Underwater Earthquake Recordings Reveal Mysterious Whale Calls

Fin whales are the second largest animals on the planet.
Credit Nilfanion / Wikimedia Commons

The Blue whale is believed to be the largest animal ever to exist. But nobody remembers number two. Fin whales are the second largest animals on the planet, weighing in at around 80 tons. And they’re very mysterious creatures. Now scientists have gained better access to the giant whale’s secret lives – almost accidentally.

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Coal Terminal Plans Reduced
5:37 pm
Wed May 8, 2013

Plans Scrapped For Coal Export Terminal In St. Helens, OR

Kinder Morgan wanted to move coal off of trains coming from the Powder River basin of Montana and Wyoming and onto ships bound for Asia.
Credit Roger Geach / Wikimedia Commons

The number of coal export terminals under consideration in the Northwest has dropped to three, that’s from a high of six last year.

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Coal Company Lawsuit
4:31 pm
Tue April 2, 2013

Environmental Groups Announce Plan To Sue Rail And Coal Companies Under Clean Water Act

A coalition of environmental groups say coal that escapes from trains is polluting the water and should be regulated under the Clean Water Act.
Credit Callum Black / Wikimedia Commons

A coalition of environmental groups that oppose exporting coal through terminals in the Northwest have announced plans to file a lawsuit against BNSF Railway and several coal companies. The groups say coal that escapes from trains is polluting the water and should be regulated under the Clean Water Act.

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Greenhouse Gases
4:18 pm
Mon March 25, 2013

Washington State Passes Legislation To Tackle Greenhouse Gas Emissions

The Washington state legislature has just passed a bill that will come up with a strategy to cut greenhouse gas emissions. The bill was introduced by request of Gov. Jay Inslee.

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