A gas explosion early Wednesday morning injured nine firefighters and severely damaged several buildings in Seattle’s Greenwood neighborhood.

Kristen Steele / Flickr

This year Americans will see the highest Fourth of July gas prices they've seen in the last six years. That's according to AAA . And as bad as it sounds, for Northwest drivers it even gets a little worse.

Oregon LNG Not Giving Up On Natural Gas Pipeline

May 8, 2014
Chris Lehman / Northwest News Network

A company that wants to build a liquefied natural gas pipeline through northwest Oregon took its case to a state appeals board Thursday. The developer is trying to reverse a Clatsop County decision to reject the project.

Courtney Flatt

Most of the evacuated residents of Plymouth, Washington, were able to return to their homes Monday night after an explosion at a natural gas tank rocked the small town on the Washington-Oregon border.

Google Earth

State and federal pipeline safety investigators have been dispatched to the site of an explosion and fire at a liquefied natural gas storage facility in southeastern Washington.

LNG is natural gas that’s been cooled to a liquid form for easier storage. Five people were injured in the early morning blast Monday, but only one remains hospitalized.

The debate over a gas tax hike has revved up again in the Washington legislature.

Members of the mostly Republican majority in the Washington Senate say they want to jumpstart talks on a gas tax package to fund roads and transit. Previous negotiations stalled out in December.

Tom Banse

Oregon regulators moved this week to make it easier for truck fleet owners to convert from gasoline or diesel to natural gas. Portland-based Northwest Natural became the first utility in the region to get clearance to build compressed natural gas filling stations.

Washington Governor Jay Inslee says he will continue to push for a gas tax package in the 60-day session that starts Monday. But a key transportation leader in the State Senate signaled Thursday that prospects for a deal may be dimming.

Trucking fleet operators in the Northwest are showing growing interest in filling up with natural gas instead of diesel.

The nation's biggest ferry system is aiming to convert some of its fleet from diesel to natural gas propulsion.

Two key transportation leaders says time is running out for Washington lawmakers to agree on a multi-billion dollar roads and transit package.

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

Washington lawmakers convene in special session Thursday in an effort to win production of the next Boeing 777.

As drivers head out on Northwest highways this Labor Day weekend, gas prices are significantly lower than they were a year ago.

AAA says the price at the pump has fallen a nickel per gallon this past week alone in Oregon and Washington. That's the biggest one-week drop in the nation.

The Washington House has approved a $10 billion transportation package that includes a 10.5 cent gas tax increase over two years. The vote Thursday follows a failed effort Wednesday to approve the same measure.

It was a rare do-over vote on the House floor. And State Representative Marko Liias, a Democrat, acknowledged as much. He said, “As a House we rarely reconsider our decisions. You know when we make a decision, it’s pretty final. But this is a singular moment. This is a time when inaction is a loss of competitiveness.”

A proposal to raise Washington’s gas tax by 10.5 cents to fund transportation projects has failed in the state House. Supporters Wednesday came up one vote short. But they vow to try again.

The transportation revenue package would raise $10 billion for maintenance and preservation of existing roads and to fund new projects. The proposal calls for a 6 cent gas tax increase this summer followed by another 4.5 cent increase next July.

Imagine paying less than a dollar per gallon for your commute, compared to today's statewide averages of $3.84 in Oregon and Washington and $3.80 in Idaho for a gallon of gas. Eighty-four cents in Idaho and Washington -- or 96 cents in Oregon -- per gasoline gallon equivalent is how much the US Department of Energy figures it costs to recharge an electric car in each state.

The agency's assistant secretary David Danielson announced an online cost comparison calculator Tuesday for what he calls the "eGallon."

Environmental groups have gone to court again to stop the export of liquefied natural gas from the Port of Coos Bay.

Coos Waterkeeper, the Sierra Club and other groups filed a petition with Oregon’s Court of Appeals Tuesday. They’re asking the court to reverse a judge’s decision last month to allow the port to dredge a waterway deep enough for large vessels that could haul LNG and bulk commodities like coal.

OLYMPIA, Wash. – Transportation leaders in the Washington Senate have proposed what they call a “barebones” roads, ferries and transit budget for the next two years. The spending plan rolled out Wednesday in Olympia includes no new sources of funding for highway projects.

Republican Curtis King co-chairs the Senate Transportation committee. At a press conference, he acknowledged there’s a lot of pressure for a gas tax package this year.

A proposal to export liquefied natural gas from a terminal at the mouth of the Columbia River has hit a major setback this week. Oregon courts have affirmed that it was legal for Clatsop County in 2011 to reverse its position on a pipeline connected to the project.

OLYMPIA, Wash. – A proposal to raise Washington’s gas tax by ten cents faces a bumpy road in Olympia. House Democrats rolled out the idea Wednesday as part of a $10 billion transportation funding package, but it faced immediate opposition.

The plan comes from House Transportation Chair Judy Clibborn. It would increase Washington’s gas tax two-cents per gallon per year for five years. House Republicans quickly pointed out that when fully implemented, the state’s fuel excise tax would be 47.5 cents per gallon – higher than any other state today.

Wyden Leads Sharp Debate Over Natural Gas Export

Feb 13, 2013

Should the U.S. export its abundant supply of shale gas? Oregon Senator Ron Wyden tackled that question in a hearing today. It’s his first since he took over chairmanship of the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources. Amelia Templeton of EarthFix reports.

Ron Wyden's website

Should the U.S. export its abundant supply of shale gas? Oregon Senator Ron Wyden tackled that question in a hearing today. It’s his first since he took over chairmanship of the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources.

PORTLAND - Washington and Oregon are getting serious about finding a replacement for the gas tax. Steadily improving fuel efficiency in cars is eroding the primary source of road funding in the Northwest. A new report to the 2013 Washington Legislature finds it "feasible" to have drivers pay by the mile instead. In Oregon, lawmakers have actually drafted legislation to do just that.

Suburban Portland SUV owner Mary Olson has possibly glimpsed the future of how we'll pay for roads, although it's tricky to spot.

The Department of Energy released a study today/ Wednesday that finds exporting natural gas would benefit the U.S. economy. That may clear the way for the feds to grant licenses to 15 proposed export terminals, including two in Oregon. Amelia Templeton of Earthfix reports.

The environment hasn’t been a big issue during this presidential campaign. It mainly comes up in the context of energy independence.

Photo by Tom Banse / Northwest News Network

Natural gas production in North America has increased so dramatically that no fewer than 17 companies have now applied to export the fuel overseas. Two gas export terminals are proposed in the Northwest - one near Coos Bay, Oregon, and the other at the Port of Astoria. This week, federal energy regulators are getting an earful of public testimony. Correspondent Tom Banse reports on the possible effects all this could have on the price you pay for natural gas.

The prospect of coal exports has stirred controversy in the Northwest this year. But near Astoria last night, it was natural gas exports that drew a capacity crowd. Correspondent Tom Banse reports what happened when federal regulators invited comment on a proposed natural gas export terminal at the mouth of the Columbia River.

Idaho Begins Seismic Testing For Natural Gas

Oct 1, 2012
Photo Credit: Aaron Kunz

The Natural Gas Industry is shaking the earth in Idaho. It’s looking for the best places to start drilling.