Interior Secretary Ken Salazar had some tough words for Shell Oil Thursday as he announced the results of an investigation into Shell's Alaskan accidents in 2012. But he did not announce the tough consequences that environmentalists were hoping for in the wake of Shell’s year of Arctic mishaps.
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?
RICHLAND, Wash. - Washington Gov. Jay Inslee says it may take two to four years to begin removing liquids from leaking tanks at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation. The Democratic governor made the comments Wednesday after a tour of the southeast Washington site.
The governor told reporters on the tour that there is no technology that can stop the leaks.
This Thursday the Bullitt Foundation moves into their new offices on Capitol Hill — a brand new building they’re touting as the greenest in the world. The Bullitt Center is a “living building” that will generate all its own electricity and water. Last week the head of the Bullitt Foundation and coordinator of the first Earth Day, Denis Hayes, took Ross Reynolds and his crew on a tour of the Bullitt Center.
The Bullitt Center grand opening is April 22, 2013 — Earth Day.
RICHLAND, Wash. – President Obama’s nominee for the next federal Energy Secretary is no stranger to the cleanup work at the Northwest’s Hanford Nuclear Reservation. Ernest Moniz was Energy undersecretary during the Clinton Administration and back in the late '90s he faced scrutiny about tank leaks at Hanford.
The problem -- and question then -- was whether about a million gallons of leaked radioactive tank waste had reached the groundwater and was headed toward the Columbia River. Or if it was staying put in a dry layer of soil, above the groundwater.
Shell Oil Co. has put Arctic drilling on hold. The company announced Wednesday that it will not attempt to drill for oil in the Arctic Ocean this year. The announcement comes after a year of accidents and setbacks for Shell’s Arctic drilling efforts.
Originally published on Mon February 25, 2013 7:15 pm
RICHLAND, Wash. – A new detail has emerged on the leaking tanks at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation. The federal Energy Department acknowledged last week that six single-shelled tanks are holding less radioactive waste than they used to. Monday the agency said those tanks are losing less than three gallons a day.
Worst case: Three gallons per day adds up to 1,095 gallons of radioactive waste per year. The Department of Energy says it doesn’t know yet how long these tanks might have been seeping waste.
Global warming and melting ice are rapidly changing the landscape of the Earth's polar regions. What will it mean for life at the poles, and for the rest of the world? Norwegian explorer Borge Ousland has seen this environmental transformation for himself. He’s the first person to complete solo expeditions across both the North and South Poles. In 2010, he completed the Northern Passage – a circumnavigation of the entire Arctic ocean. He joins us to talk about his adventures in the vast, frozen tundra of the poles.
Sushi venues were the least accurate among retailers when it came to accurately labeling the fish they sold, according to Oceana. Of the samples tested nationally, 74 percent of the fish at sushi bars wasn't what it was labeled as.
Seattle and Portland are among the best cities to dine on seafood if you want the salmon, sole or halibut you order to actually be salmon, sole or halibut. The two Northwest cities emerged from a national report Thursday with some of the lowest rates of “fish fraud” in the country.
Wind can be a very significant power provider in the United States, especially in the Midwest. Environmental lawyer and writer Philip Warburg talks about wind as a resource, including how it relates to the economy and climate change. He spoke at Seattle's Town Hall on December 4, 2012. The talk was introduced by Denis Hayes, CEO of the Bullitt Foundation and coordinator of the first Earth Day.
North Dakota is booming. The state's unemployment rate is just 3.2 percent — well below the national average of 7.9 percent. Officials are trying to keep pace with a population surge brought on by oil industry jobs that have made North Dakota the country's number two oil-producing state. But what will extracting millions of barrels from the Bakken oil field mean for the region's environmental and economic future? Writer and reporter Richard Manning joins us with the story of North Dakota's oil boom.
Originally published on Fri February 15, 2013 2:54 pm
RICHLAND, Wash. – A tank full of radioactive waste at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation in southeast Washington may be leaking. Friday the U.S. Department of Energy and its contractors say liquid levels in an underground radioactive waste tank are going down.
The single-hulled tank is called T-111. It’s located in central Hanford in a group of tanks called T-farm. The Department of Energy reports the rate of loss is about 150 to 300 gallons of liquid a year.
Al Gore has been delving into the future. The former vice president and media mogul (he just sold his Current TV network to Al-Jazeera English) says we are at the dawn of a new era.
In his new book, “The Future: Six Drivers of Global Change,” he takes an in-depth look at major shifts occurring in the world: globalization linked to automation and digital connections that are shaping a world where fewer workers are needed; population growth coinciding with a widening gulf between the haves and have-nots; new biological breakthroughs that are bringing humans into control of evolution.