Pacific Northwest

Earthquake Early Warning
4:24 pm
Mon December 15, 2014

What Would You Do With A Few Seconds Warning Of Coming Quake?

The proposed early earthquake warning system, included in the federal budget this weekend, is designed to give a heads up about strong shaking coming from a distance along the West Coast.
Credit Andy Maguire / Flickr

The new federal budget sent to the president's desk over the weekend included $5 million for an earthquake early warning along the West Coast. 

The proposed early warning system can't predict earthquakes. It's designed to give a heads up about strong shaking coming from a distance. It has worked because electronic signals can travel faster than rumbling over the surface.

Depending on how close you are to the epicenter, U.S. Geological Service geophysicist Doug Given said you could get an alert anywhere between ten seconds to a minute in advance.

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Christmas Trees
5:08 pm
Thu November 20, 2014

Your Christmas Tree Might Cost More This Year

A stronger economy and several years of cutbacks on plantings in the Northwest have upped prices of Christmas trees.
Credit Pacific Northwest Christmas Tree Association

Some of the world’s largest Christmas tree farms are right here in the Northwest. Some are harvesting about 20,000 trees a day. The average Christmas tree might be a bit more expensive this year.

Here's why.

A stronger economy and several years of cutbacks on plantings in the Northwest have upped prices this year. Like a few dollars per tree for the farmer.

Bryan Ostlund heads the Pacific Northwest Christmas Tree Association in Salem, Oregon.

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The Wilderness Act
7:34 am
Wed September 3, 2014

Climate Change Creates Challenges For A Wilderness Pine Tree

A dying whitebark pine in Crater Lake National Park. The National Park Service is planning to plant disease-resistant varieties in its wilderness zones but the Forest Service says the Wilderness Act prevents it from doing so in its wilderness areas.
Credit Amelia Templeton

Scientists say whitebark pines are one of the Northwest’s most iconic and ecologically important trees — the majority of which are found in rugged wilderness.

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Northwest State Parks
10:50 am
Mon July 7, 2014

Which One Of These State Parks Is Not Like The Other?

Hells Canyon is the main attraction of Hells Gate State Park - and the river is the only way to travel all the way up it.
Credit http://www.visitidaho.org / http://www.visitidaho.org/attraction/parks/hells-gate-state-park/

There’s no need to roam too far from home to have a great summer vacation. The Northwest has many beautiful state parks for you to visit. The Northwest alone is home to more than 400 city, state and national parks! Here are just five Northwest state parks you’re going to want to check out.

1. Hells Gate State Park

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Weather Patterns
4:54 pm
Fri June 6, 2014

The Blob: Not The Horror Movie, The Summer Weather Influencer

Sea surface temperature anomalies in degrees C drawn from NOAA/ESRL database.
Credit Nick Bond

"The Blob" was the title of a 1958 sci-fi horror movie. It's also the nickname the Washington State Climatologist has given to a large patch of warmer than normal seawater off the Pacific Northwest Coast. This "blob" is unlikely to become the subject of another movie, but it will influence our summer weather.

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Diesel Ownership
7:34 am
Fri June 6, 2014

Northwest Diesel Ownership Among Tops Nationally, Still Lags Behind Europe

A truck carrying diesel fuel.
Credit FlickrLickr / Wikimedia Commons

Northwesterners love their diesel pickups. A new report by a diesel industry group shows Oregon and Idaho are in the top ten when it comes to highest rates of diesel vehicle ownership in the nation. But the overall rate pales in comparison to other parts of the world. Salem Correspondent Chris Lehman reports.

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Wildfires
4:25 pm
Wed June 4, 2014

Northwest Fire Season Ramps Up East Of The Cascades

A 2013 wildfire near Goldendale, Washington.
Credit Washington Incident Management Team #2 / InciWeb

Workers in the Tri-Cities, Wash. area got notice Wednesday of tinder-dry conditions at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation and were advised to practice fire safety at work and at home. It’s about four weeks ahead of schedule for these types of fire-weather alerts and a sign of a long, hot summer ahead.

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Tick Removal
6:16 pm
Fri May 23, 2014

How To Remove A Tick - And Why A Hot Match Won’t Work

Memorial Day weekend in the Northwest coincides with prime time for ticks.
Credit Washington State Department of Health

Memorial Day weekend in the Northwest coincides with prime time for ticks. These arthropods can drink your blood for days without you knowing.

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Weather Patterns
5:14 pm
Wed May 21, 2014

Long, Warm Summer On Tap According To Weather Service Outlook

An updated seasonal outlook from the National Weather Service calls for a long, warm summer.
Credit NOAA Climate Prediction Center

The supercomputers at the Weather Service's Climate Prediction Center have crunched long-term trends to produce an outlook for June, July and August. For most of the Northwest, the forecast gives a strong probability of above-normal temperatures. 

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Cherry Harvest
4:23 pm
Mon May 12, 2014

Washington’s Third-Largest Cherry Crop Queued Up This Season

Northwest sweet cherry growers say this season they'll likely pick their third-largest haul ever.
Credit Anna King / Northwest News Network

Northwest sweet cherry growers say this season they'll likely pick their third-largest haul ever. That's 20 million boxes full. But there’s plenty that can happen to cherries even the day of harvest.

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