News

What Renewed Relations Mean For American Travel To Cuba

37 minutes ago
Franklin Reyes / AP Photo

As U.S. moves to restore ties with Cuba, Americans will shed some of the travel restrictions that effectively put the country out of reach for 50 years, says KPLU travel expert Matthew Brumley.

“I can’t tell you how big this is,” said Brumley, who has led several trips to Cuba.

Bellamy Pailthorp photo / KPLU News

Gov. Jay Inslee says it’s time to make polluters pay for carbon emissions. He’s proposed a cap-and-trade system that he says will raise a billion dollars a year while helping the state drastically reduce its contribution to global warming. 

Today is Public Radio Day! 

Give to your favorite public radio stations today and support the rich tradition of public broadcasting in the Pacific Northwest!

For every gift you make today only, of $120 or more, we’ll donate socks to the United Way of King County, to be distributed to area shelters.

Anna King

 

A slowdown at western ports is now aggravating farmers across the Northwest.

Produce processors are laying off production line workers. Apples are backing up. And the summer’s premium hay is stacked in sheds and not moving.

Tom Banse

 

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is making a high-stakes bet that it will prevail in a pending lawsuit over Snake River dredging.

Two million taxpayer dollars could go to waste if environmental challengers succeed in blocking dredging of the West Coast's farthest inland ports.

BirdNote: The Rooster

20 hours ago
James Orr

The chicken is perhaps the most widespread avian species in the world - and the exotic Red Jungle Fowl is the ancestor of the hybrid Araucana and Rhode Island Red.

Scientists postulate that chickens were first domesticated from jungle fowl in India, about 5,000 years ago.

Traders and travelers then carried them far and wide. Find your local Audubon and learn more about wild birds. To see - and hear - a rooster crowing, be sure to watch the video!  

Ashley Gross / KPLU

The price of crude oil has dropped to its lowest level in about five years and has fallen about 40 percent this year. That’s great for people filling up their gas tanks, but perhaps not such good news for a company like Boeing that’s made fuel-efficiency of its new airplanes a big selling point.

Now the company is explaining why the drop in oil prices is not cause for concern. 

Sean_Marshall / Flickr

The cremated remains of 23 people will be scattered on the waters of Puget Sound on Thursday. The Pierce County medical examiner says all the ashes are either unwanted, or friends and relatives of the deceased could not be found.

As the list of the deceased indicates, some of the cases go back decades.

Idaho Potato Commission

 

Northwest potato farmers are cheering a small provision tucked into the newly passed federal spending package.

The Women, Infants and Children or WIC program provides modest monthly vouchers for a variety of foods. They’ll cover any vegetable except “white potatoes.”

Scott More

During late December, birders go out counting every bird that hops, swims, flies, or soars into view, as they have for more than 100 years.

Audubon chapters across the United States and elsewhere sponsor the Christmas Bird Count, or CBC.

Learn about the history of the Christmas Bird Count. Join the count - in Alaska, Connecticut, Detroit, Texas, Washington State, California, New Mexico, or Florida. Visit Audubon.org to find a CBC near you! CBC runs December 14, 2014 - January 5, 2015.  

Ted S. Warren / AP Photo

Gov. Jay Inslee on Monday proposed pumping an additional $1.3 billion into Washington's K-12 schools in the next two-year budget, which he says would allow the state to meet a high court mandate to fully-fund basic education a year early.

shakealert.org

 

The new federal budget sent to the president's desk over the weekend includes $5 million for 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 works because electronic signals can travel faster than rumbling over the surface.

Washington Consolidated Technology Services

 

The state of Washington has good cyber security standards, but state agencies don’t always adhere to those standards, according to the findings of a performance audit released Monday.

Tom Banse

The labor-intensive work of rearing threatened plants and animals for restoration to the wild takes time and patience. In Oregon and Washington, a growing population doing that work is inmates.

Minette Layne

The desert seems an unlikely habitat choice for all-black birds.

But ravens thrive even in the arid Southwest, where common sense suggests that light-colored feathers would be a better adaptation to the scorching sun.

As it turns out, a raven’s black plumage works well in the desert.     

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