environment

Lone Caribou Herd In Lower 48 Keeps Federal Protection

May 7, 2014
U.S. Fish And Wildlife Service

U.S. Wildlife officials said a small herd of mountain caribou found in the Northwest will retain federal protection. But, it will be as a threatened species rather than endangered. These caribou are the last in the Lower 48.

What you pour down your drain could be hurting fish and wildlife populations on the Columbia River – and possibly people too.

punditmom.com

Pollution in Asia can influence weather over much of the world. Those are the findings from a new climate study from northwest researchers, who teamed up with researchers from Texas.

Higher Nitrate Air Pollution In Central Wash.

Apr 11, 2014

Researchers have found the source of an unusual pocket of air pollution in central Washington. Tiny particles from large agricultural operations mix with vehicle exhaust. That creates nitrate pollution.

Northwest River Forecast Center

Irrigators, hydropower dam operators and tugboat captains are sitting pretty across most of the Northwest. That's according to the latest regional water supply forecast. 

Hal McCune, URS

The Umatilla Chemical Depot is nearing final cleanup. It letting go of 60 more workers Thursday. The northeast Oregon military site is where tons of deadly chemical weapons were stored for decades. 

Bryan Weyers / Wikimedia Commons

The Navy is pursuing permits to conduct exercises in a large area of the Pacific Ocean. The Northwest Training and Testing Range stretches from Northern California to the Canadian border.

Risk Of Falling Trees Shutters Northwest Camping Areas

Feb 10, 2014
U.S. Forest Service

Forest managers in north Idaho and western Washington will be closing some popular camping areas this year. They say nearby trees are infected with root rot and post a threat to campers. It’s a problem Northwest forests may see more of in the coming years, as Jessica Robinson reports.

Jessica Paterson / Flickr

This week, Oregon may join Washington in backing away from a proposal to protect bees by restricting certain pesticides. An Oregon legislative panel is set to amend a measure Tuesday that would instead create a task force to study the possibility of future restrictions.

Panel Finds Feds Didn't Use Best Science In Wolf Plan

Feb 7, 2014

A new independent review finds the federal government used uncertain science when it proposed taking the gray wolf off the endangered species list across the Lower 48.

Floating Offshore Wind Farm Gets A Green Light

Feb 6, 2014
Kim Hansen / Wikimedia

A proposal to build a floating wind farm off the coast of Southern Oregon took a step forward Wednesday. Interior Secretary Sally Jewell and Gov. John Kitzhaber announced that a Seattle developer is now free to submit plans for the project. 

Scott Butner/Flickr

Farmers across the country are hoping that Congress will soon pass a new Farm Bill. The bill helps guide agricultural policy. One version of the bill would limit the public’s access to information about agricultural pollution. And that is drawing interest -- and concern, from groups that don’t normally get involved with farm policy.

Over the last several years, Hanford Nuclear Reservation managers have mishandled barrels and boxes of hazardous and radioactive waste in the central part of the site.

Shawn Murphy / Flickr

Senator Maria Cantwell wants the White House to stop a proposed mine in Alaska that she says will threaten jobs in Washington state. The proposed Pebble Mine, in Western Alaska, sits near Bristol Bay, which is one of the world’s most abundant salmon habitats. About 1,000 Washington residents hold commercial fishing permits there. At a rally at Fisherman’s Terminal in Seattle, Cantwell described the mine as a “giant cauldron of toxic waste.”

Dominio Público / Wikimedia Commons

New legislation could put 126,000 acres of Washington’s Olympic Peninsula into permanent conservation.

Democratic Senator Patty Murray introduced the Wild Olympics Act on Friday. It’s a chunk of national forest land almost as big as the city of Chicago. The Act would also provide protection for 19 rivers on the Olympic Peninsula.

Washington’s mostly Republican Senate majority will formally unveil a proposed 12-year, $12 billion transportation funding package Thursday.

gibbseynz/Flickr

As Washington and Oregon consider proposals for three coal export terminals, many have raised questions about how much coal dust could come off the trains that would service those terminals. If the Gateway Pacific Terminal is built near Bellingham up to 18 coal trains could travel along the I-5 corridor every day. According to new research, some dust will escape from those trains.

Puget Sound Still In "Critical Condition"

Nov 1, 2013

Puget Sound just got the results back from its annual check up…and they’re not good. A new report from the Puget Sound Partnership labels the Sound as still in “crisis” but says some small progress has been made.

Anna King

A dried-out three-mile-stretch of creek in Central Washington will soon swell again with water. It’s part of a project near Ellensburg to pipe irrigation water from the Yakima River to keep water in the creek for salmon and steelhead.

The Center for Biological Diversity filed a lawsuit against the EPA calling on it to do something about the acidifying waters of the Northwest.

The ocean absorbs millions of tons of greenhouse gases every day, and those gases are lowering the ocean’s pH and causing problems for shellfish and other creatures.

Under the Clean Water Act a water body can be declared “impaired” if it is too acidic.

Then it falls on the EPA to regulate the source of the pollution that’s causing the problem. In this case – CO2 emissions.

Furloughed EPA Workers Anxious to Return to Work

Oct 16, 2013

A deal is in the works today for Congress to end the partial government shutdown. If it goes through, hundreds of thousands of furloughed federal employees could be back at work as early as tomorrow.

Environmental and commercial fishing groups filed a lawsuit in federal court Friday calling on Washington State to update the fish consumption rate. The groups say the state has failed to acknowledge how much fish people eat. That standard will dictate how much pollution is allowed into the water before fish are dangerous to eat.

Cassandra Profita

Three environmental groups are suing the Port of Vancouver to overturn the approval of a lease for a proposed oil terminal.

Oregon State Police have removed a huge banner from the Oregon state capitol and detained five environmental protesters. 

White house budget officials say they will advise the president to veto a logging bill the House is discussing this week.

Out-Dated Dam Killing Thousands Of Fish Near Tacoma

Aug 30, 2013

Right now there are tens of thousands of salmon - including endangered species - dying at the base of an out-dated dam on the White River east of Tacoma. The Buckley Diversion Dam is blocking their homeward journey to spawn in the Mt. Rainier watershed. Local tribes say the federal government is failing in its responsibility to transport the fish around the dams on this river.

Columbia River Coal Comments Most in DEQ History

Aug 26, 2013
Chris McKenna / Wikimedia Commons

Oregon environmental regulators have been sifting through more than 16,000 comments about a proposed coal export terminal along the Columbia River. the public comment period recently closed.

Klamath Task Force Reports Progress

Aug 23, 2013
terriem

Groups with a big interest in resolving Klamath Basin water issues say they need more time to deliver recommendations to Oregon Senator Ron Wyden.

Oceana

The environmental group Oceana will send a high-definition camera into the ocean off Oregon Tuesday.  The group plans to collect underwater video footage using a remote-operated vehicle over the course of seven days. The videos will be used to make the case for closing more ocean habitat to bottom trawl fishing.

Leaking tailpipes and wood-fired stoves are some of the culprits that release methane and soot into the atmosphere. Some researchers think cutting these emissions could significantly reduce global warming effects. But a Northwest study has found that it might not reduce effects that much.

Pages