environment

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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Oil Megaloads
6:24 am
Tue August 6, 2013

Nez Perce Attempt To Halt Oil Sands Shipment Through Reservation

The national debate over oil development took an unusual turn on an Idaho highway early Tuesday morning. For nearly two hours, members of the Nez Perce Tribe blocked the passage of a giant water evaporator headed for the oil sands of Alberta, Canada.

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Klamath Basin
8:22 am
Fri August 2, 2013

Wyden Looking For Klamath Basin's Solution

The wildlife refuge has restored critical wetlands to the Pacific Flyway, providing habitat for large numbers of birds.
Credit jdegenhardt

Oregon Senator Ron Wyden says he’s looking for permanent solution to the Klamath Basin’s regional water crisis in southern Oregon. And he says he wants it on his desk by September tenth. A group charged with finding those answers met Thursday in Klamath Falls.

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Wildfires
7:17 am
Fri August 2, 2013

Falling Tree Kills Firefighter In Central Oregon

Shadow Lake Wildfire located 15 miles west of Sisters. The fire began August 28th and burning entirely within the Mt. Washington Wilderness. Photo taken Sept. 10, 2011, from Mt. Washington pullout off Highway 20.
Credit Mary R Bernsen

Authorities are identifying the wildland firefighter who was killed Thursday outside the town of Sisters as John Hammack of Central Oregon. Another firefighter was injured in the accident and was taken to a local hospital. 

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Polar Bears
6:57 am
Wed July 31, 2013

How Polar Bears At Oregon Zoo Help Us Understand Climate Change

Tasul is one of two polar bears at the Oregon Zoo that researchers are tapping for help studying the effects of climate change on wild polar bears.
Credit Oregon Zoo

A polar bear at the Oregon Zoo are helping researchers at the U.S. Geological Survey study how climate change is affecting wild Arctic polar bears. For EarthFix, Cassandra Profita reports.

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Oil Terminal Lease
5:57 am
Tue July 30, 2013

Vancouver Oil Terminal Lease Would Allow Exports

The Port of Vancouver has released copies of the lease agreement Port commissioners approved last week for a controversial oil terminal. EarthFix reporter Cassandra Profita reports the lease does not restrict terminal developers from exporting oil overseas.

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Carbon Storage
7:05 am
Mon July 29, 2013

Field Test Near Pasco Renews Attention On Viability Of Carbon Storage

Carbon dioxide is being injected half a mile underground via this well head next to the Boise Inc. pulp and paper mill in Wallula, Wash.
Credit Tom Banse

This week, technicians in southeast Washington continue a field test to show how carbon dioxide could be injected and trapped deep underground. It's an experiment led by the Pacific Northwest National Lab. Injection of fifty tanker truck loads of CO2 will take about four weeks. Then comes about a year and a half of monitoring to see if the global warming gas stays locked away forever beneath ancient lava flows.

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Oil Terminal
7:01 am
Mon July 29, 2013

Hundreds Protest Vancouver Oil Terminal

The rally and march, organized by Portland Rising Tide, drew marchers from as far away as Benton County, Oregon and Olympia, Washington, with concerns about a range of processing and transportation projects.
Credit April Baer

Hundreds of people came to Vancouver's waterfront Saturday for a sun-baked demonstration against the fossil fuel industry, and its projects in the Northwest. April Baer reports.

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Adopt-A-Highway
9:02 am
Thu July 25, 2013

Nearly 700 Inactive Groups Purged From Washington’s Adopt-A-Highway

Members of the Street Invasion Ryders motorcycle club pick up trash along I-5 near Olympia. They are members of the state’s Adopt-a-Highway volunteer program

You’ve seen the Adopt-A-Highway signs by the side of the road. But have you ever seen a volunteer group picking up trash? In the past three years, Washington state has purged nearly 700 inactive organizations from the program – and taken down their signs. Olympia Correspondent Austin Jenkins has the story of Washington’s effort to clean up this long neglected volunteer program.

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Northwest News
9:47 am
Tue July 23, 2013

So What Is The White Bluffs Bladderpod, And Why Does It Matter?

The White Bluffs bladderpod is a small plant growing on a tiny strip of Washington land. It’s the focus of a big fight between farmers and the federal government. And there’s still a lot scientists don’t know about the plant.
Credit U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service

The White Bluffs bladderpod is a small flower facing some big issues.  It’s a short plant with bright yellow flowers and small inflated pods – hence its name.  At first glance, there’s nothing special about it.  It isn’t edible and doesn’t have any herbal use that we know of.   But the bladderpod is rare.  It appears to grow only in a 17 mile long strip of federal lands in the Columbia Basin.  Right now, U.S. Fish and Wildlife lists the bladderpod as “threatened.”  They would like to list it as “endangered.” 

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