Energy

Algae Biofuels
6:09 am
Wed August 29, 2012

Biofuel Gets A Boost In The Northwest From Fat Algae

Margaret McCormick is the CEO of Matrix Genetics, a Seattle based biotech company that's genetically modifying algae to make better biofuel.
Photo by Ashley Ahearn EarthFix

Algae biofuels just got a boost. A small biotech company in Seattle announced Wednesday that they’ve secured enough funding to expand their research on how to cultivate blue-green algae to make fuel. Ashley Ahearn reports for EarthFix.

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Rising Gas Prices
3:51 pm
Mon August 27, 2012

Northwest Gas Prices Still On The Rise

The price of gas in the Northwest is more than 25 cents a gallon above the national average.
tinatinatinatinatina Flickr

With the Labor Day holiday weekend approaching, the average price of a gallon of unleaded gas has once again topped $4 in Oregon and Washington. AAA says that puts the cost of gas in the Northwest at more than 25 cents a gallon above the national average.

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Green Home Building
6:39 am
Mon August 27, 2012

New Windows Could Cut Your Energy Costs

Photo by Wikimedia user: Nieuw Wikimedia Commons

Upgrading your windows may be one way to significantly lower your energy bill. Researchers in Richland, Washington, are comparing two homes to find out how much you can save. For EarthFix, Courtney Flatt has this report.

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Wind Industry Layoffs
5:31 pm
Fri August 24, 2012

PTC Uncertainty Prompts More Wind Industry Layoffs

A wind company with operations in the Pacific Northwest has announced more layoffs this year as the industry prepares for the expiration of tax credits at the end of the year.

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Wind Turbines Survive
7:35 am
Fri August 24, 2012

Wind Turbines Undamaged by Central Wash. Fire

Central Washington wind turbines were not damaged in the Taylor Bridge fire.
Photo by Courtney Flatt Northwest News Network

There’s been some speculation over the years as to how wind farms would hold up in the event of a large wildfire. Now, the verdict is in. From EarthFix, Courtney Flatt reports a central Washington wind farm was not damaged.

Scorched earth surrounds wind turbines just outside Cle Elum, Washington. A fire that drove through over the last week and a half destroyed more than 50 houses and has burned an estimated 23,000 acres. It did not burn 48 wind turbines.

Operations manager Eric Melbardis says gravel landscaping protected the turbines from the fire.

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Northwest News
7:36 am
Thu August 23, 2012

American Coal Companies Look To The Northwest For Export Opportunities Part Two

View of the waters near the Cherry Point refinery, the largest refinery in Washington state. Near the refinery is a proposed site to export coal.
Northwest News Network

American coal companies are looking to the Northwest as the fastest way to bring their product from the Powder River Basin of Wyoming and Montana to Asian markets. There are now 5 ports in Washington and Oregon considering coal export terminals. In part two of our series on Coal in the Northwest we head to the site of what could one day be the largest coal export facility on the west coast, Bellingham, Washington. 

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Coal Terminals
6:20 am
Wed August 22, 2012

What Wyoming Coal Means For The Northwest: The View From Coal Country, Part I

A Wyoming coal mine.
Photo courtesy Bureau of Land Management

There are now 5 ports in Washington and Oregon considering building export terminals to ship American coal to Asia. The coal would come from mines in Wyoming and Montana and would travel by train through the Northwest. That has governmental agencies, environmental groups, tribes, labor unions and industry in an increasingly fierce debate. As part of EarthFix’s ongoing coverage of coal in the Northwest, Ashley Ahearn brings us this story from Wyoming coal country.

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Dam Removal
6:37 am
Fri August 17, 2012

Rep. Hastings Questions Panel on Dams, Hydropower

A Washington congressmen returned to his hometown Wednesday to promote a bill protecting hydropower dams from removal. Courtney Flatt of EarthFix reports from Pasco, Washington.

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Coal Terminal Canceled
6:34 am
Fri August 17, 2012

Plans For Coal Export Terminal In Grays Harbor Abandoned

The company behind a proposed coal export terminal in Grays Harbor has decided not to go ahead with the project. Ashley Ahearn reports for EarthFix.

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Tiadl Energy
6:08 am
Tue August 14, 2012

Puget Sound Tidal Energy Project Challenged

The Washington coast is home to some of the strongest tidal currents in the country. Some want to harness those tides for power. Ashley Ahearn reports a proposed tidal power facility in Puget Sound is running into some trouble.

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