environment

Citizen Science
6:36 am
Wed August 8, 2012

"Citizen Science" Gains Momentum In Northwest And Nationally

Joan Rupp of Tacoma counts and records bird sightings outside her living room window as part of Project FeederWatch.
Photo by Tom Banse Northwest News Network

Public participation in scientific research is mushrooming in the Northwest and across the country. The trend is called "citizen science." It can take the form of volunteer monitoring and data collection, or crowd-sourced science, or science education with a research component. One sign the movement is gaining acceptance and credibility: It's a big topic of discussion at a science conference in Portland this week. Correspondent Tom Banse reports.

Read more
Tsunami Debris Cleanup
6:06 pm
Mon August 6, 2012

Tsunami Debris Cleanup Costs Mounting

This refrigerator with Japanese labels was found on Long Beach on July 5.
Shelly Pollock

The costs of cleaning up Japanese tsunami debris along Northwest coasts are adding up. Oregon says it's reached the half-million dollar mark. And officials say debris is now being spotted in unexpected places.

Read more
Wastewater Heat
6:12 am
Fri August 3, 2012

King County Opens The Door For Heat Energy From Wastewater

This sewage pipe was installed in 1905 near Discovery Park. King County wants to partner with the private sector to harness the heat energy from wastewater for use in buildings.
Photo by Ashley Ahearn Northwest News Network

The Department of Energy estimates that 350 billion KWH of energy are flushed down drains in the form of heated water. King County is one of the first counties in the nation to try to do something about all that wasted heat energy. EarthFix’s Ashley Ahearn reports.

Read more
Hanford's "Black Cells"
4:17 pm
Thu August 2, 2012

Energy Secretary, Experts Take Closer Look At Hanford's Black Cells

A new research panel, which includes Secretary Steven Chu himself, is aimed at ensuring problems inside "black cells" can be detected and fixed.
Department of Energy

The Hanford Nuclear Reservation’s so-called “black cells” are getting another look from a new high-level group of experts. The announcement today from the U.S. Department of Energy comes just as the southeast Washington nuclear site implements new safety standards for non-radioactive risks.

Read more
Hanford Waste Tanks Cleanup
5:25 pm
Wed August 1, 2012

Three Hanford Tanks Could Be Cleaned Out By End Of Summer

The Mobile Arm Retrieval System (MARS) arm stretches into a huge tank that simulates the nuclear waste found inside a Hanford storage tank.
Department of Energy

Washington environmental regulators are hoping that crews at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation will clean out three more aging tanks of radioactive waste by the end of summer. A federal judge has ordered that ten tanks in an area known as “C-Farm” have to be closed by September of 2014.

Read more
Rainwater Collection
5:55 am
Fri July 27, 2012

Southern Oregon Man Sentenced to Jail Time For Illegal Rainwater Reservoirs

Collecting rainwater can get you in legal trouble in Oregon. A court has sentenced a southern Oregon man to 30 days in jail, and a fine, for maintaining 3 illegal reservoirs on his property. Amelia Templeton of Earthfix reports.

Read more
Mine Water Quality Violations
4:49 pm
Fri July 20, 2012

Wash. Mine Fined For Water Quality Violations

Washington's Department of Ecology has fined a gold mine in northeastern Washington for water quality violations.
Northwest News Network

The Department of Ecology has fined a gold mine in northeastern Washington for water quality violations. The company plans to appeal the fines. The mine has faced numerous penalties over the past five years.

Read more
Lonesome Larry
6:12 am
Thu July 19, 2012

Lonesome Larry Hits 20-Year Anniversary

20 years ago, Lonesome Larry was the only sockeye salmon to make the 800-mile trip from the Pacific Ocean to Redfish Lake, once a popular spawning area for salmon.
Photo by Aaron Kunz Northwest News Network

This year is the twenty year anniversary of Lonesome Larry, a lone sockeye salmon that made the 800 mile trip from the ocean to Redfish Lake in central Idaho. It helped jump start a multi-billion dollar effort to save Snake River salmon from certain extinction. Earthfix reporter Aaron Kunz explains.

Read more
Duwamish River Pollution
6:05 am
Thu July 19, 2012

Clean Water: The Next Act - Seattle's Duwamish River Part II

The upper part of the Duwamish River, seen from 119th Street in Tukwila, Wash.
Photo by Joe Mabel Photo courtesy Wikimedia Commons

This fall marks the 40th Anniversary of the Clean Water Act – a piece of legislation that changed the way waterbodies in this country are regulated and protected.

Pollution was supposed to be curtailed so that fish from all the waters in America would be safe for people to eat. 40 years later, though, many waterways still bear fish too tainted to consume safely.

One of the most polluted waterways in the Northwest is Seattle’s Duwamish River. We’re taking a look at the Duwamish as part of EarthFix’s series “Clean Water: The Next Act.”

Read more
New Insect In Idaho
6:28 pm
Wed July 18, 2012

Feds Confirm Mysterious Idaho Bug Is New Pest In U.S.

The elm seed bug made its first appearance in Idaho.
Idaho Department of Agriculture

Federal agriculture officials say the Northwest has the first appearance in the country of an invasive insect known as the “elm seed bug.” The pest was discovered in southern Idaho. It doesn’t pose a threat to crops or livestock. But it could prove to be a major nuisance for homeowners.

Read more

Pages