Washington

San Juan Public Lands
5:27 am
Fri March 23, 2012

Senate Holds Hearing On Protecting San Juans' Public Lands

Shorelines and lighthouses such as this one, at Lime Kiln Point on San Juan Island, would be permanently protected as part of a National Conservation Area under leglislation moving through Congress.
Photo by KenBungay Flickr

WASHINGTON, D.C. -- A bill to establish a National Conservation Area that would give permanent protection 1,000 acres of unique landscapes in the San Juan Islands is wending its way through Congress. A key committee took up the legislation Thursday.

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Hanford Cleanup
5:23 am
Fri March 23, 2012

Questions Remain About Hanford's Waste Treatment Plant's Mixing Tanks

KENNEWICK, Wash. – The massive factory being built to treat radioactive sludge at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation has serious design problems, especially with huge mixing containers meant to treat that waste. That’s according to testimony by top Department of Energy officials and federal contractors at a hearing in Kennewick Thursday night. Correspondent Anna King was there.

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Hanford Cleanup
5:22 am
Fri March 23, 2012

Hanford Treatment Plant Components Need To Be Reexamined For Safety

Donna Busche, in pink, told the Defense Nuclear Facilities Safety Board that she can't vouch for the safety of some of the waste treatment plant's components at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation in southeast Washington.
Photo by Anna King Northwest News Network

KENNEWICK, Wash. – Top managers at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation say they’re going to have to reexamine key components of a massive waste treatment plant under construction in southeast Washington. That’s according to testimony at a marathon hearing in Kennewick Thursday. The federal Defense Nuclear Facilities Safety Board was there to listen to concerns about the plant being built to treat 56 million gallons of radioactive waste. Correspondent Anna King reports.

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Columbia Sea Lions
5:19 am
Fri March 23, 2012

Federal Judge OK’s Killing of Sea Lions in Columbia River

SEATTLE - A federal judge ruled Thursday that Washington and Oregon can resume killing sea lions on the lower Colombia River at the Bonneville Dam.

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Washington Pharmacy Regulations
5:44 am
Thu March 22, 2012

Washington to Appeal Plan B Ruling

OLYMPIA - Washington will appeal a recent federal ruling on the state’s pharmacy regulations. Last month a federal district court judge found the state’s rules on dispensing medications unconstitutional. At the heart of the case is emergency birth control pills. Ruby de Luna reports.

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Wind Power Record
5:40 am
Thu March 22, 2012

BPA Wind Power Sets New Record

Wind farms like this one in California are a growing part of Northwest energy production.
Photo by James McCauley Northwest News Network

RICHLAND, Wash. – Wind farms have generated a record-breaking amount of power this month. As correspondent Courtney Flatt reports, the Bonneville Power Administration is hoping to avoid over-generation problems that happened last spring.

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Hanford Cleanup
8:00 am
Wed March 21, 2012

Hanford’s Work With Robotic Arm Slow And Halting At Tank Farms

Washington River Protection Solutions workers cover a broken tank farm pump with yellow plastic to shield the radiation. The pump is part of the MARS operating system that’s been shut down since last December at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation.
Photo by Anna King Northwest News Network

RICHLAND, Wash. – At the Hanford Nuclear Reservation in southeast Washington, the race is on to clean up radioactive sludge buried in aging underground tanks. Some of that waste has already leaked into the soil not far from the Columbia River. But attempts to use high-tech robotics to hose out waste tanks haven't gone as planned. And an important federal cleanup deadline is fast approaching. Correspondent Anna King visited one Hanford tank farm to see what’s causing the delays.

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Bellingham Export Terminal
5:34 am
Wed March 21, 2012

Review Process Kicks Off For Gateway Pacific Terminal In Bellingham

Some protestors wore gas masks in opposition to a proposed bulk export terminal in Bellingham.
Photo by Ashley Ahearn Northwest News Network

BELLINGHAM -- SSA Marine has submitted a permit application to build a bulk export terminal in Bellingham.

If approved, the terminal will be large enough to handle up to 54 million metric tons per year.

That could include wheat and grains but the majority will be coal. It will be delivered by train from mines in Wyoming and Montana – and then shipped out of Washington to Asian markets.

Ashley

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Washington Government Transparency
5:38 am
Mon March 19, 2012

Washington Scores Well On Transparency, But Up To Citizens To Verify

The Washington Senate chamber and public gallery.
Photo by: Potjie Flickr photostream (Creative Commons licensed)

OLYMPIA -- Washington’s Public Records Act and other transparency measures have earned the state a high score in a nationwide study. The State Integrity Investigation looked at every state’s disclosure practices. It ranked Washington third in the country, with a letter grade of "B-."

But budget cuts are curtailing investigations by government watchdogs. And all three branches of government have tried to put more of their records outside the law’s scrutiny. KUOW’s Amy Radil reports.

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Accused Washington Soldier
5:27 am
Mon March 19, 2012

Seattle Defense Attorneys To Meet With Bales In Kansas

Staff Sgt. Robert Bales
Photo source: High Desert Warrior

FORT LEAVENWORTH, Kansas -- The man accused of killing 16 Afghan civilians has had a brief phone conversation with his wife and two children. But efforts are underway to arrange a face-to-face meeting. That’s according to one of the attorneys for Army Staff Sgt. Robert Bales. Correspondent Austin Jenkins reports Bales’ defense team will spend the next two days interviewing him at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas.

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