Environment

The Health of the Ocean
12:24 pm
Wed November 17, 2010

Study: How we measure ocean health is wrong half the time

A load of salmon from Prince William Sound, Alaska, awaits delivery to a fish tender.
Suresh A. Sethi/U of Washington

The most widely-used way of measuring the health of ocean ecosystems is wrong as often as it's right.

And that can lead to thinking that fisheries are sustainable when they're really not.

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Coal Exports
7:40 am
Wed November 17, 2010

Coal export terminal plan draws fire

The coal export terminal would utilize the former Reynolds Aluminum smelter property in Longview, WA.
Tom Banse N3

Plans for a coal export terminal on the Columbia River at Longview are coming under fire from environmental groups. Many of them showed up at a Cowlitz County commission hearing  on Tuesday.


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Reflections on the Water
5:11 am
Wed November 17, 2010

Living on island time: Gabriola Islander Sheila Malcolmson

Sheila Malcolmson stands on the shoreline near her home on Gabriola Island, in the Gulf Islands east of Nanaimo.
Liam Moriarty KPLU

There are more than a thousand islands in the Salish Sea. Some of them are home to good-sized towns, others are inhabited only by wildlife. Either way, the island experience is one of the signatures of this region.


This week in our series “Reflections on the Water,” KPLU environment reporter Liam Moriarty takes a ferry to Gabriola Island, in British Columbia, population about 4,000. He talks with Sheila Malcolmson about the joys and challenges of island living.

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Urban Wildlife
2:39 pm
Mon November 8, 2010

Whooo knew?

A barred owl makes a suprise visit to Belltown.
Sandy Stamato/KPLU

This barred owl perched in a tree Monday outside the window of KPLU's Seattle studios.  In short order, it began drawing the attention of passersby in the Belltown neighborhood, and a crowd under the tree attempting to get a good picture. This photo was taken by our own Sandy Stamato.  Other than some pretty upset crows who made a ruccous, the owl's visit been warmly received.

Environment
2:29 am
Mon November 8, 2010

The Case of the Radioactive Rabbit

A radioactively contaminated rabbit has been caught and killed on the Hanford Nuclear Reservation near Richland in southeast Washington.

The U.S. Department of Energy says that's not unusual. Last year the agency caught 33 contaminated animals. But this rabbit was unusually close to workers and the public.

The bunny was found just a few miles outside of the city of Richland in Hanford's 300 Area. Todd Nelson is a spokesman for one of the federal contractors that clean up Hanford. He downplayed the incident.

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South Sound News
10:48 am
Thu October 28, 2010

Growth Pains as Lewis-McChord Population Booms

If you've been stuck in traffic jams on I-5 near Joint Base Lewis-McChord recently, you're not alone. The back-ups are an almost daily occurrence since thousands of soldiers returned from deployments. The race is on to come up with some long-term solutions, not only to the transportation troubles but to education and social service demands. That's because military analysts predict an additional 14,000 more soldiers and their families will arrive by 2015.

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Elwha Dam Project
9:54 am
Tue September 14, 2010

Preparations Underway For Biggest Dam Removal In U.S. History

Glines Canyon Dam
Tom Banse

Tom Banse: "I'm standing at the lip of Elwha Dam. That's the sound of the Elwha River in the background gushing out of a spillway and then crashing down 105 feet into an emerald, green pool at the base of dam. Because the sun is hitting just right now, I can see salmon. Actually, quite a few salmon...circling aimlessly here at the foot of the dam...still looking after all these years for some way over. It's been 100 years since Elwha Dam was constructed. It was built without fish ladders. Because of that...and those frustrated salmon below...this dam's days are numbered."

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Orcas
11:00 am
Wed February 13, 2008

Scooping up behind killer whales

Andrew Reding Flickr

In some ways, the Puget Sound's orca whales  are very familiar. We've even given them individual names.  But there's still a lot we don't know, like where the whales go and what they eat.

Now that they're listed as endangered, those have become important questions. KPLU environment reporter Liam Moriarty accompanied a research crew trying to get answers.

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