Environment
5:00 am
Mon June 11, 2012

Greenpeace vs. Shell: Duelling vessels head for Arctic from Seattle

Greenpeace scientists will deploy research submarines to explore two of Shell’s planned Arctic drilling sites, the Beaufort and Chukchi seas.
Lindsay Lowe KPLU

Seattle’s Elliott Bay is the epicenter of a global energy fight.

The Shell Oil Company has two rigs docked here, the Kulluk and the Noble Discoverer. Also in Elliott Bay is the Greenpeace vessel, Esperanza.

As soon as the ice clears, Shell’s rigs will head out for the Arctic. They’ll be the first to conduct exploratory drilling there in more than two decades. Greenpeace plans to shadow them, using submarines.

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Artscape
4:30 am
Mon June 11, 2012

LeMay Car Museum displays history and art of autos

Hood ornament at the new LeMay Car Museum in Tacoma.
Katherine Banwell KPLU

The new LeMay Car Museum in Tacoma is a dream come true for car lovers. But it’s also worth a visit if you’re into art. The color and shape of the vehicles is a feast for the eyes, and there’s art history too, if you consider such things as hood ornaments and how they’ve changed over time.

Listen to this week’s Artscape by clicking the listen button above to get the full picture.

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Undersea noise
9:45 pm
Sun June 10, 2012

Caught on tape! Undersea volcano erupts off Northwest coast

Hydrophone deployed at Axial Seamount. By Bill Chadwick, Oregon State University.

Originally published on Sun June 10, 2012 8:13 pm

NEWPORT, Ore. - For the first time, we're getting to listen to the eruption of an undersea volcano off the Northwest coast. Correspondent Tom Banse got a hold of unusual recordings made at a place called Axial Seamount. It's about 300 miles out to sea from Cannon Beach, Oregon.

Researchers from Oregon State University deployed instruments on the seafloor in anticipation of an eruption at Axial Seamount last year. At first, an underwater microphone - called a hydrophone - captured the low-frequency rumblings of small earthquakes. The sped up audio sounds like a loud bump.

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Jazz Northwest
1:00 pm
Sun June 10, 2012

Jazz Northwest for June 10, 2012

Eddie Creed (1935-2012)

Pianist Eddie Creed passed on April 19 at the age of 77, and he'll be remembered on the next edition of Jazz Northwest (6/10) with a performance recorded by Jim Wilke in 1971 at The Jazz Gallery.   Eddie was one of the most active jazz pianists from the 60s through the 80s in Seattle.  There will be a memorial concert at The New Orleans on Sunday June 10 from 4 to 8 pm .

Also on this week's Jazz Northwest: The new CD by Human Spirit, Bill Anschell's Earshot Award-winning CD "Figments" and more, including news about upcoming opportunities for great live jazz.

Point Defiance Zoo
8:12 am
Sun June 10, 2012

Photos: Zoo's live animal drama encourages kids to get outside

The awe-inspiring bald eagle quickly became a crowd favorite.
Mallory Kaniss KPLU

Point Defiance Zoo’s latest outdoor theater show – “Captain Adventure vs. Dr. Do-Nothing: The Quest to Get Outside!” – is a live animal show that follows the journey of a superheroine and her trusty superdog sidekick as they defeat their nemesis, Dr. Do-Nothing.

The show features a variety of native and exotic animals and the chance for audience members to participate. KPLU’s multimedia intern Mallory Kaniss attended one of the shows and brought back the photo gallery below. (For larger images and to view captions or if your device doesn't support Flash, check out the show on our Flickr page.)

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Japanese Tsunami debris
6:58 am
Sun June 10, 2012

No decision yet on the fate of Japanese tsunami dock

A piece of tsunami debris -- a dock that washed ashore near Newport -- continues to draw onlookers. Photo by Oregon State Parks

Originally published on Fri June 8, 2012 6:48 pm

SALEM, Ore. – Oregon Parks officials are still weighing their options for the giant piece of tsunami debris that washed up on the Oregon coast this week. The Japanese dock continues to draw onlookers to the beach near Newport.

The state Parks and Recreation Department opened the removal project up for bid Friday. The agency’s Chris Havel says the proposals that come in will help determine whether the dock will be destroyed or reused.

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A Blog Supreme
4:48 pm
Sat June 9, 2012

Reader comments about building jazz audiences, musicians with day jobs

Discussion about the future of jazz audiences — and how to cope with them — was strong.
iStockPhoto

Originally published on Sat June 9, 2012 9:13 am

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Japanese Tsunami Debris
1:07 pm
Fri June 8, 2012

Japanese dock suddenly makes tsunami debris threat real

In this photo provided by the Oregon Park and Recreations Department, an unidentified worker burns off debris from the Japanese dock float on Thursday.

When a massive concrete and metal dock – 66 feet long, seven feet tall, 19 feet wide and covered in alien species – hit an Oregon beach this week, the threat to the Northwest’s economy and environment from millions of tons of Japanese tsunami debris suddenly became more real.

Even with the haunting appearance of a Japanese ship floating off the coast of Alaska, reports of what we might expect to hit our coastlines centered mostly on plastics, soccer balls and even some human remains in running shoes – all of which carried more curiosity than alarm.

But then the dock just showed up on the beach one morning and now the threat of ships colliding with significant tsunami debris, and the invasive species that can hitch a ride from the coast of Japan on them, has officials significantly worried.

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NPR programs
9:09 am
Fri June 8, 2012

'Car Talk' Guys Are Retiring, But Their Best Stuff Will Be Rebroadcast

Ray, left, doing some dental work on Tom.
CarTalk.com

Originally published on Fri June 8, 2012 12:30 pm

Click and Clack are going into retirement.

This just in from NPR's communications department:

June 8, 2012; Our Fair City – Tom and Ray Magliozzi, aka Click and Clack the Tappet Brothers, the comedian mechanics who host NPR's Car Talk, will tell their listeners this afternoon that as of this fall, they'll no longer record new programs. But their weekly call-in series will continue to be distributed by NPR drawing on material from their 25 years of show archives.

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Weather with Cliff Mass
8:58 am
Fri June 8, 2012

Forecast: A break from rain by Sunday; coastline is the place for sun

Above is a view of the development of coastal clouds as seen from the polar-orbiting MODIS satellite looking along the central Washington coast. You can see that the coastline is free of clouds.
Cliff Mass

The forecast is calling for a few rain showers to move through the Puget Sound region, no surprise there. But with the strong sun heating the ground and with the clouds aloft, we could also get a weak thunderstorm or two, said KPLU’s weather expert Cliff Mass.

Then, it’s better weather through the weekend. By Sunday, we’ll see the end of showers, though there will still be some clouds aloft and temperatures in the mid-60s. Monday is the best of the set with temperatures reaching into the 70s.

Often, Mass advises sun-seekers to head east across the mountains, but in this week's conversation he offered another option. He said the coast would be a great place for some sun and seeing the transit of Venus.

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I Wonder Why ... ?
6:00 am
Fri June 8, 2012

Why are we such gear freaks in the NW?

Museum of History & Industry and Charla Bear

In the Pacific Northwest, we know that yoga pants, polar fleece and hiking shoes are great for grocery shopping. But when we head into the great outdoors, we love to pile on the high-tech gear.

Sure, the weather here demands a certain level of protection from the elements. But what is it that compels people in the Pacific Northwest to want every piece of equipment out there?

Read more on I Wonder Why ... ?

Sports with Art Thiel
9:00 pm
Thu June 7, 2012

Wrongly accused of rape, Seahawks give Brian Banks shot at dream

Brian Banks works out at Seahawks headquarters in Renton Thursday. Cleared of rape charges just two weeks ago, Banks, once a high school star in Long Beach, Calif., gets to pursue his NFL dream.
Corky Trewin AP Photo

Brian Banks is not a bitter man. He has a right to be - after serving five years in prison and five on probation for a rape he didn't commit. But he says he wants to focus on his future.

Banks was cleared of the charges just two weeks ago, after his accuser recanted her story. Now, the Seahawks are giving the former high school football standout a shot at his dream. KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel was at Seahawks headquarters Thursday, where Banks tried out for the team.

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NPR science
7:32 pm
Thu June 7, 2012

UW's new fetal genetics test: Less risk, more controversy

Originally published on Fri June 8, 2012 9:37 am

The full genetic code of a fetus has been cracked. The technique, used by scientists at the University of Washington, could offer parents safer and more comprehensive prenatal testing in the future. It also leaps into a debate over what information parents will eventually have — and use — to decide whether to have an abortion.

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fitness and nutrition
5:45 pm
Thu June 7, 2012

Weight loss for a big prize - is it a gimmick?

Overall, so far in this weight-loss contest, 1,400 contestants in Pierce County lost more than 15,000 pounds.
Allan Foster Flickr

If you’ve ever thought about losing weight, it helps to have a prize, as 1,400 people in Pierce County can tell you. They’re in a contest that ends this week – similar to TV’s Biggest Loser reality show – with winners getting a $10,000 prize.

It may seem like a gimmick. But scientists say it has a solid foundation.

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Education
3:57 pm
Thu June 7, 2012

A teary farewell to Seattle schools chief

Interim Superintendent Susan Enfield dabs her eyes as her deputies bid her an emotional farewell.
Gabriel Spitzer KPLU

It wasn’t on the school board agenda, but members of Susan Enfield’s cabinet paid her a surprise tribute during her final school board meeting Wednesday. Enfield is leaving Seattle Public Schools this month after 16 months as interim superintendent.

Enfield wiped away tears as a string of her deputies praised her, beginning with Enfield’s number-two, Interim Deputy Superintendent Bob Boesche.

“So my word is motivator. There wasn’t a meeting ever, an encounter ever with you, where I didn’t walk out [feeling] motivated to do my best,” Boesche said.

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