Bellamy Pailthorp

Environment Reporter

Bellamy Pailthorp joined the staff of KPLU as a general assignment reporter in 1999 and covered the business and labor beat for more than a decade. She now covers the environment beat. She was raised in Seattle, but spent 8 years in Berlin, Germany freelancing for NPR and working as a producer for Deutsche Welle TV after receiving a Fulbright scholarship in 1989. She holds a Bachelors degree in German language and literature from Wesleyan University in Middletown, CT and a Masters in journalism from New York's Columbia University, where she completed the Knight-Bagehot fellowship in business reporting in 2006.

Bellamy's most memorable KPLU radio moment: “Seeing the INS open a shipping container at the Port of Seattle that contained stowaways from China, three of whom died en route of seasickness. Harrowing stuff, with global economics and inequity at its root.”

Ways To Connect

Ted S. Warren / AP Photo

More than 1,300 Microsoft employees in the Puget Sound region got their pink slips Thursday as part of announced cuts to the worldwide workforce that could total 18,000 by the end of the year — the biggest in the company’s history.

AP Photo

Lawmakers are expressing concerns over an updated report outlining the combined impacts of coal and oil trains that would roll through the Northwest if plans for export terminals move forward.

Courtesy of Kiley Riffell

As much as one-third of our food supply depends on pollinators like insects and birds that fertilize plants when they fly between blossoms.

Doug Mahugh

Sunny skies on the Fourth of July are not something to take for granted in Seattle. But revelers can count their blessings this year, as the clouds are expected to burn off and give way to a decent day for picnics and fireworks displays, says KPLU weather expert Cliff Mass.

“Much better than some other Fourth of Julys,” Mass said.

Bellamy Pailthorp / KPLU

A group of disabled and elderly tenants being priced out of a Seattle apartment building are striking back.

Several residents of the Theodora Apartments in Ravenna have filed suit under federal fair housing laws. 

Tim Durkan

Keep your rain gear handy if you’re headed outside this weekend. KPLU weather expert Cliff Mass says we’re starting to pay for the drier-than-usual June we’ve had this year.

But Mass says sunny days are around the corner; things will improve by the Fourth of July weekend.

Elaine Thompson / AP Photo

Ever hear an orca speak? Ken Balcomb, who many regard as the godfather of whale conservation, captured their chatter using a hydrophone on San Juan Island: 

AP Photo/NOAA Fisheries Service, Candice Emmons

Following the release of a federal report on the state of endangered orcas, one local researcher says there's one factor that matters more to the whales' wellness than toxins and vessel traffic: fish. 

Ken Balcomb, who many regard as the godfather of whale conservation, is the director of the Center for Whale Research in Friday Harbor. For almost 40 years now, the center has been keeping track of every individual whale in the three pods that make up the southern resident population of the iconic orcas that live in Puget Sound.

Elaine Thompson / AP Photo

Scientists studying southern resident killer whales for the past decade now know they are among the most contaminated marine mammals and prefer to eat Chinook salmon.

Snohomish County Flickr

Three months after a deadly landslide hit the town of Oso, Washington, Snohomish County is again looking at options to tighten land-use policy in slide-prone areas. 

Bellamy Pailthorp

A cornerstone of Gov. Jay Inslee’s election campaign was the promise of new jobs in clean technology.

But how healthy is the sector in Washington and what’s still holding it back? Hard data on those questions is yet to come, but a visit to the state's inaugural Clean Technology Showcase provided some answers.

Rachel La Corte / AP Photo

Search and rescue teams are combing the east side of Mount Rainier where a Seattle woman has gone missing amid snowy conditions.

Tim Durkan

The nude cyclists at Seattle’s Fremont parade can look forward to comfortable summer temperatures on Saturday afternoon. And it might even be a bit too hot for runners at the Rock 'n' Roll Marathon, says KPLU weather expert Cliff Mass.

A weak front has passed through, says Mass, and the clouds and sprinkles are expected to subside in time for the summer solstice Saturday.

AP Photo

Ridesharing services like Sidecar, Uber and Lyft have won the first round in a battle to decide how regulate them in Seattle. There will be no cap on the number of drivers using these apps under a new proposed agreement announced by Seattle Mayor Ed Murray.

Tim Durkan

Friday will bear the worst of the weekend weather, says KPLU weather expert Cliff Mass, but don’t expect sunshine on Father’s Day.

The rain returned on Friday with a “fairly good drenching” — “the first substantial rain” in nearly two weeks — and the clouds are expected to stick around for most of the weekend, Mass said.

Alison Marcotte / KPLU News

Three sets of oversized orange headphones have arrived at Seattle’s Olympic Sculpture Park.

They’re parts of  “YOU ARE HEAR,” a temporary installation by Seattle sound artist Trimpin that will be unveiled Saturday.

AP Photo

Saying it is not an action he takes lightly, King County Executive Down Constantine vetoed a King County Council vote that would have staved off cuts to King County Metro Transit bus service next year.

King County Metro Transit's Facebook Page

The King County Council has voted to postpone a portion of planned cuts to King County Metro Transit bus service — at least for now.

In a 5-to-4 vote, the council on Monday decided to delay three of the four planned rounds of service cuts.

The decision does not affect the first round of cuts planned for this September; all three of the postponed reductions were slated to take effect in 2015, in February, June and September. 

Dan Hershman / Flickr

For the first time in 20 years, the Wenatchee River in eastern Washington has opened for spring Chinook salmon fishing.

Wildlife officials say it’s a sign of successful management of the hatcheries program. 

Tim Durkan

It appears the infamous June Gloom will spare us — at least for now.

“Normally this month, we have June Gloom: cloudy skies, temperatures in the 60s. But this year, it’s been unusually nice, [with] temperatures above normal and extraordinary amounts of sun,” Mass said.

Matthew Brown AP Photo

The rapid increase of trains carrying crude oil across the region has raised alarm bells in the wake of a series of serious accidents. Communities and first responders say they can’t adequately prepare for possible disasters because railroads are not required to give any information on the shipments.

That’s about to change, at least to some extent, with a new regulation that takes effect Friday.

AP Photo

The Seattle City Council on Monday unanimously approved an ordinance to raise the city's minimum wage to $15 per hour, the highest in the nation.

Starting on April 1, 2015, the clock will begin ticking for Seattle-based employers to boost their minimum wage workforce up to $15 per hour. Raises will be phased in over the next three to seven years, depending on how large the business is and what other benefits it offers. 

Chris Kittredge Photo

In recent years, the Samish River Basin in Skagit County has suffered severe pollution from fecal coliform bacteria. Water polluted with untreated sewage and manure leads to frequent closures of shellfish beds and beaches. County authorities are testing a new method to find the sources: poop-sniffing dogs

Erin Hennessey

It’s time to get out the sunscreen and summer clothes.

KPLU weather expert Cliff Mass says we have a beautiful weekend ahead of us.

Paul Morigi / AP Images for National Portrait Gallery

Poet and author Maya Angelou died today at age 86. Her autobiography "I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings" broke new ground with its descriptions of overcoming racism and trauma in the South. Throughout her life, Angelou was celebrated for her words. She shared a few of those words with KPLU's Bellamy Pailthorp, in a 2011 interview we're reposting here:

Denise Walker photo

“First things first,” said KPLU weather expert Cliff Mass. “For Mother’s Day, it looks good.”

Mass predicts sunny skies and temperatures of at least 70 “and maybe even into the low 70s” for Sunday.

But before then, there’s some rain to get through.

Photo by andreyphoto.com Flickr

Global climate change is having tangible effects all over the country, including in Washington and the greater northwest.

That’s according to the latest National Climate Assessment released Tuesday by the Obama administration.

courtesy of Puget Sound Bike Share

It’s official: Seattle’s much-anticipated bike share program will launch with 500 bikes in September, thanks to a $2.5 million grant from Alaska Airlines.

City officials unveiled the plan for the program, called "Pronto! Emerald City Cycle Share," on Monday.

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