Environment

Environment
1:09 pm
Thu August 18, 2011

It's about saving greenbacks, not just being green in the NW

Battery powered Nissan Leafs in the Seattle city motorpool
Mayor McGinn's photostream flickr.com

When it comes to fuel efficiency, Northwest drivers are apparently motivated more by their wallets rather than a desire to be green.

A poll commissioned by Seattle based PEMCO Insurance finds 83 percent of drivers here save fuel mainly because they want to save money. Only 14 percent said they saved fuel primarily to cut down on pollution and carbon emissions.

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NOAA leaves seattle
9:43 am
Thu August 18, 2011

Newport, Ore., prepares to welcome NOAA

Newport has been rolling out the welcome mat for NOAA's new facility.
Chris Lehman Northwest News Network

NEWPORT, Ore. – A fleet of federal research ships is moving from Seattle to the Oregon coast. This weekend, state and local leaders in Newport are celebrating the transition with festivities. The state of Oregon kicked in nearly $20 million to help Newport lure the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Pacific operation center from its long-time home.

From the Yaquina Bay Bridge, a huge bridge over the harbor, you can get a good view of the new NOAA pier. It can hold up to a half-dozen ocean-going ships.

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Noxious Weeds
4:48 pm
Wed August 17, 2011

Toxic weed rears its flowered head In Northwest

Tansy ragwort, a member of the sunflower family native to Western Europe, is toxic to horses and cattle.
Courtesy of Washington State Noxious Weed Control Board

This year's prolonged wet weather is having the side effect of re-invigorating a noxious weed. The Northwest is seeing a comeback of tansy ragwort, a toxic species of sunflower that farmers thought they had vanquished years ago.

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Environment
4:38 pm
Wed August 17, 2011

Plastic bag opponents make their case city-by-city

NEWPORT, Ore. – Advocates of banning plastic grocery bags are taking their cause to smaller cities. An effort to ban the bags statewide failed in both the Oregon and Washington legislatures this year.

Now, supporters are making their case to city councils across the Northwest.

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Fisheries
3:18 pm
Wed August 17, 2011

Efforts growing to control the smaller fish of the seas

School of Pacific Jack Mackerel at Santa Catalina Island, Calif.
Aleph1 Flickr

WARRENTON, Ore. – Perhaps you've had salmon, tuna or swordfish for dinner recently. Or maybe it's on the menu tonight. Every big fish that lands on your plate got that big by eating lots and lots of little fish.

If you don't have abundant small fish in the ocean, you won't have the big fish. That's why some scientists, fishery managers and advocacy groups are paying more attention to the small prey in the sea.

Some environmental group now also want tighter regulation, and that's making fishermen nervous.

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Environment
3:00 pm
Wed August 17, 2011

Volunteers needed for annual count of bicyclists and pedestrians

Participants in the Cascade Bicycle Club's Chilly Hilly ride, gathering at Seattle's Coleman Dock for the ferry trip to Bainbridge Island. Feb 27, 2011
WSDOT flickr.com

It's become an autumn tradition: the annual survey of bicyclists and pedestrians in Washington. For the fourth year in a row, volunteers are needed to help the Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) and Cascade Bicycle Club take a statistical snapshot of the number of people who get around by walking and biking.

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Wildlife assaults
12:12 pm
Wed August 17, 2011

NW officials: Keep your distance from mountain goats

courtesy of Washington State Department of Fish and Wildlife

RICHLAND, Wash. –Wild life officials and park managers are refining a better strategy to keep aggressive mountain goats at bay, but steering clear of goats is a good first step.

A hiker was gored to death by a big mountain goat in the Olympic National Park last fall. And just recently, Wenatchee National Forest rangers fielded multiple complaints about an aggressive goat in the hills near Ellensburg.

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Pacific laboratory
11:40 am
Wed August 17, 2011

Roman artifact helps nuclear storage research

Denis Strachan, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory fellow, traveled to Italy last summer in search of the corroded glass to study how modern-day glass will hold up when storing nuclear waste.
Northwest News Network

Scientists are experimenting with 1,800-year-old glass to better understand how nuclear waste storage will hold up for millennia to come.

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Wildlife management
4:52 pm
Thu August 11, 2011

Wolf advocates split over strategy

Western Gray Wolf
Photo courtesy U.S. Fish and Wildlife

The recent ups and downs of wolf de-listing have split environmentalists over strategy. This week, a handful of conservation groups filed an appeal in San Francisco to return wolves to the endangered species list. But other groups feel the battle won't be won in the courts.

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Employment
11:39 am
Wed August 10, 2011

Aberdeen biodiesel plant humming 24 hours a day

ABERDEEN, Wash. – A biodiesel plant at Aberdeen is operating 24 hours a day, producing fuel using canola oil from Canada.

The Daily World of Aberdeen reports the 4-year-old Imperium Renewables has recovered from struggles the past couple of years thanks to markets in Oregon and Canada driven by environmental standards.

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Environment
9:59 am
Wed August 10, 2011

Northwest businesses seek new salmon policy

Northwest business, fishing and food industry leaders are asking for a new approach to salmon policy. From Richland, Courtney Flatt has more.

A group of one thousand businesses is using a ruling recently issued by federal judge James Redden to call for a new look at salmon policy.

In a news conference, business owners and fishermen say they hope to bring key regional stakeholders to the table to restore all salmon runs to the Columbia and Snake Rivers. Spokane outdoor retailer Paul Fish says a healthy environment goes hand-in-hand with a healthy economy.

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Grizzly bear shooting
9:45 am
Wed August 10, 2011

When is it legal to kill a grizzly bear?

About 1,100 grizzlies live in the Lower 48.
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

A north Idaho man could face fines and prison time for shooting a grizzly bear on his property. The animal is considered threatened under the Endangered Species Act and federal law allows people to kill grizzlies only in certain situations.

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Environment
9:36 am
Wed August 10, 2011

Short-line railroad floats third coal export terminal proposal in Wash.

A short-line railroad is taking a hard look at opening a coal shipping terminal at the Port of Grays Harbor. This is the third location proposed by different developers in western Washington. It would export Rocky Mountain coal to Asia.

The corporate parent of the Puget Sound and Pacific Railroad proposes to redevelop a public port terminal in Hoquiam. The railroad anticipates coal exports would be its main business.

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Environment
1:30 pm
Mon August 8, 2011

Mysterious orange goo ID'd as mysterious microscopic eggs

An orange substance on the water surface in Kivalina, Alaska, (shown here on Aug. 3) has been ID'd as millions of eggs ... but what species the eggs belong to is now the new mystery.
Associated Press

ANCHORAGE, Alaska – Scientists have identified an orange-colored gunk that appeared along the shore of a remote Alaska village as millions of microscopic eggs.

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Solar energy
8:45 am
Mon August 8, 2011

Community Solar program has benefits, needs more supporters

Architectural Illustration of the design for solar power generation atop a picnic shelter at Beacon Hill's Jefferson Park.
By Stephanie Bower Courtesy Seattle City Light

As interest in solar power gains momentum, Seattle City Light is marketing a new program to make it more widely available. 

Community Solar gives people who can’t install solar panels on their own homes the chance to reap the rewards of a cash investment in solar power.

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