Environmental reporter Ashley Ahearn has been covering the different sides of the coal debate over the last year and today on The Conversation we want to hear what you think. Ross Reynolds sits down with Ashley Ahearn to parse out the arguments for and against the proposed coal terminals in Washington, and takes listener calls.
There are five proposed coal export terminals under consideration in Washington and Oregon. They would be built to transfer coal off of trains from Wyoming and Montana mines and on to ships bound for Asia. Some coal dust will escape along the journey from mines to terminals. In the second part of our series, Ashley Ahearn looks at the environmental impacts of coal dust.
The Westshore Terminal near Vancouver, B.C. handles about 30 million tons of coal per year, loading it onto ships for export. Westshore spent $7 million upgrading pumps, rain guns and misting devices around the site used to dampen and control coal dust.
With five coal export terminals under consideration in Washington and Oregon, Northwest residents are grappling for the first time with issues that are old hat in coal states like West Virginia and Kentucky. One of those issues: coal dust. How much of it will escape along the journey from mines in Wyoming and Montana to proposed export terminals on the West Coast? And what might that dust mean for public health?
In an interview with Fox News earlier this week, Mitt Romney said that failing to reach minority voters was his biggest mistake of the 2012 campaign. What will it take to win the next election? UW Professor David Domke says winning over voters in so-called "carve-out states" — Iowa, New Hampshire, South Carolina and Nevada — will be one key to victory. He joins us with rules of the road for winning the White House in 2016.
A new poll suggestions Washington residents are leaning in favor of export terminals in the Longview and Bellingham areas. If built, these facilities could be the destinations for trains like this one hauling coal out of a mine in Wyoming
Washington’s coal export terminal proposals are winning the battle for public opinion, a new survey finds. It shows half the state’s residents supporting coal exports and one-third opposed — but the results are nuanced.
Originally published on Thu January 31, 2013 7:19 pm
ABERDEEN, Wash. – The Northwest is on the verge of becoming a gateway for crude oil. Three different developers have plans to use docks on Grays Harbor, Washington to transfer crude oil from trains to ships. Other projects are getting off the ground in Tacoma, Vancouver, B.C. and on the lower Columbia River.
There was a huge turnout Wednesday night at an introductory public workshop in Aberdeen, Washington. The response indicates crude-by-rail may be the region’s next big environmental controversy.
Energy expert Amory Lovins says the United States can replace all oil and coal by the year 2050, without nuclear power, new federal taxes or subsidies, or new inventions. At the same time, we can grow the US economy by 158 percent.
More than 2,000 people showed up Thursday to tell regulators what they think should be considered in the environmental review of a proposed coal export terminal near Bellingham, Wash. If built, it could be the largest such facility on the West Coast.
Officials from the US Army Corps of Engineers and state Department of Ecology hear public comment in Seattle this afternoon about a plan to build the largest coal export terminal on the West Coast near Bellingham. KUOW's Ashley Ahearn joins us with details. Then, we look at Michigan's new "right to work" legislation and the possible ripple effects in Washington state with University of Washington Professor Jim Gregory.
Exporting coal via the Northwest has become an issue so divisive that old friendships and alliances strain under the pressure. No matter how you feel about climate change or construction jobs or any number of issues bound to the five coal export terminals under consideration around the Northwest, chances are you know someone who feels differently about the issue than you do.
As regulators in the region weigh the potential impacts of trains full of coal moving along the Columbia River and the shores of Puget Sound, trainloads of oil are quietly on the move. There are billions of barrels of oil in the Bakken shale formation – located in North Dakota and Montana mainly. And some of that oil is now making its way to refineries in Puget Sound.
Puget Sound Energy owns and operates a coal-fired power plant out of Billings, Montana, that the Sierra Club calls "the dirtiest coal plant in the West." The Colstrip Plant meets EPA emission standards and PSE touts its green-energy portfolio, with plans to triple its renewable energy supply by 2020. How does coal fit into that equation? And with coal plants generating 42 percent of America's electricity, how much impact would closing one plant have? We take a look with PSE's Andy Wappler and Anne Hedges of the Montana Environmental Information Center.
Government agencies have begun the environmental review process for the largest proposed coal export terminal in the Northwest. It would be located near Bellingham, Washington.
If it’s built, the Gateway Pacific Terminal would draw trains from across the region, carrying coal from Wyoming and Montana to be exported to Asia, and those trains would move through Seattle. That would lead to more traffic, according to a new report from the Seattle Department of Transportation.