environment

EarthFix Reports
7:06 am
Mon June 23, 2014

Federal Salmon Plan Heads Back To The Courtroom

Fish supporters Tuesday once again challenged the government’s plan to manage dams on the Columbia River to protect endangered salmon and steelhead.
Aaron Kunz

Originally published on Thu June 19, 2014 2:36 pm

It’s back to court for the federal government and salmon advocates. Conservationists Tuesday once again challenged the government’s plan to manage dams on the Columbia River to protect endangered salmon and steelhead.

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EarthFix Reports
7:06 am
Mon June 23, 2014

Combating Algae One Dollar At A Time

Toxic algae blooms contributed to closing some of some of Oregon's lakes, ponds and reservoirs for a combined total of more than 700 days in 2013 alone.
Oregon Health Authority

Originally published on Fri June 20, 2014 4:00 pm

Millions of dollars in new funding to help combat harmful algae in Oregon and throughout the country are just a presidential pen stroke away.

Toxic algae blooms contributed to closing some of Oregon’s lake, ponds and reservoirs for a combined total of more than 700 days in 2013 alone.

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EarthFix Reports
7:35 am
Fri June 20, 2014

Conservation Group Files Lawsuit Against Timber Sale Near Oregon's Crater Lake National Park

The presence of a newly formed wolf pack is the latest issue in the ongoing legal fight over whether logging should go forward on a parcel of forestland near Crater Lake National Park.
Oregon Wild

Originally published on Thu June 19, 2014 8:47 am

The recent discovery of Oregon's wandering wolf, known as OR-7, and his new pups is one of the reasons a conservation group filed a lawsuit Wednesday against a logging project near Crater Lake National Park.

Oregon Wild filed the lawsuit against the U.S. Forest Service in District Court in Medford Wednesday.

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Hot And Dry
7:33 am
Fri June 20, 2014

Fire Season Increases Potential For Hazardous Smoke

File photo of a fire in the Douglas Complex in southern Oregon in 2013.

Originally published on Thu June 19, 2014 5:49 pm

Hot and dry conditions are expected to create above-normal wildfire conditions in parts of the Northwest this summer. While relatively few people will have to flee the flames, many more will experience a side effect of the fires: thick, acrid smoke.

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Environmental Health
2:22 pm
Thu June 19, 2014

Pregnant Women Should Eat More Fish, Unless It Was Caught In Puget Sound

Flickr Photo/Rob Bixby (CC-BYC-NC-ND)

Marcie Sillman speaks with Bill Daniell, an associate professor at the UW's School of Public Health, about Washington's fish consumption rate — a little number that has a big impact.

Volcano Research
8:53 am
Thu June 19, 2014

Scientists Take A Look Deep Beneath Mount St. Helens

The crater of Mount St. Helens.
Courtesy of Dan Miskimin

If you're hiking in the Mount St. Helens National Volcanic Monument in July or August, and you feel the earth rumble briefly, it could just be scientists trying to plumb the depths of the Northwest’s most active volcano.

Scientists are peppering Mount St. Helens with thousands of sensitive instruments this summer to understand what makes the volcano tick.

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'Impenetrable Jungle'
4:30 am
Thu June 19, 2014

Hikers Trapped In Dense Rhododendron Forest

Originally published on Thu June 19, 2014 4:50 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne with news of a rhododendron rescue. Who knew a shrub known for its brilliantly colored blooms could be life-threatening? But a couple hiking in Ireland's Knockmealdown Mountains was trapped when they got lost on a hillside so thick with wild rhododendrons, one rescuer told the BBC it was as impenetrable as a jungle - so dense that people could not hear each other, which is why it took five hours to rescue them. It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

News From Canada
2:51 pm
Wed June 18, 2014

Canadian PM Harper Approves Northern Gateway Pipeline

Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper.
Flickr Photo/The Prime Minister's Office (CC-BY-NC-ND)

Marcie Sillman gets an update on the latest news from Canada with Vancouver Sun columnist Vaughn Palmer, including an update on the Northern Gateway Pipeline and a teacher strike in British Columbia.

Controversial Project
2:50 pm
Wed June 18, 2014

Robobees: The Future Of Pollination Or Mini Spies?

Several RoboBees sit on the ground next to a penny, while another is held in tweezers with the wings activated.
From Wikipedia

Marcie Sillman talks with Aljazeera America journalist Kaelyn Forde about her story on the RoboBees Project and why some environmentalists want to stop it.

EarthFix Reports
8:17 am
Wed June 18, 2014

Underwater Video: Starfish Die-offs Hit Hood Canal

Sunflower star in Hood Canal losing its arms, a symptom of sea star wasting syndrome.
Laura James

Originally published on Tue June 17, 2014 5:00 pm

Waypoints-blog-logo-FINAL-for-posts

SEATTLE -- In the last few months, Laura James has seen more dead and dying starfish than she can count. But the diver and videographer was shocked by what she saw in Hood Canal this weekend.

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Environment
6:18 am
Wed June 18, 2014

U.S. Offshore Wind Energy Area Would Nearly Double Under New Plan

The Department of the Interior is proposing a large expansion of U.S. efforts to make energy from offshore winds, with a plan centered off the Massachusetts coast. Here, a 2010 photo shows a sunrise over Nantucket Sound.
Julia Cumes AP

Originally published on Wed June 18, 2014 8:55 am

A large swath of the Atlantic Ocean could soon be used to generate electricity, as a U.S. agency proposes opening more than 1,000 square miles of ocean to wind energy projects. The area is off the coast of Massachusetts, which has been working on the proposal with federal officials.

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Local Wonder
7:49 pm
Tue June 17, 2014

Why Are There So Few Mosquitos In Seattle?

Sharon Collman, an entomologist at Washington State University, hunts for mosquitos.
Credit KUOW Photo/Ashley Ahearn

KUOW listener Nancy Beaudet had a question: Why are there so few mosquitos in Seattle?

As part of our Local Wonder series, we sent our environmental reporter, Ashley Ahearn, onto the muddy trails of the Washington Park Arboretum to find out why skeeters don’t plague Seattle summers.

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Environment
3:31 pm
Tue June 17, 2014

Plastics Don't Disappear, But They Do End Up In Seabirds' Bellies

Plastic floats ashore in Jakarta, Indonesia.
Bay Ismoyo AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue June 17, 2014 5:33 pm

The vast majority of debris in the ocean — about 75 percent of it — is made of plastic. It can consist of anything from plastic bottles to packaging materials, but whatever form it takes, it doesn't go away easily.

While plastic may break down into smaller and smaller pieces, some as small as grains of sand, these pieces are never truly biodegradable. The plastic bits, some small enough that they're called microplastics, threaten marine life like fish and birds, explains Richard Thompson, a professor of marine biology at Plymouth University in the U.K.

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Seafood
10:41 am
Tue June 17, 2014

Red Fish, Blue Fish: Where The Fish Flesh Rainbow Comes From

Yellowfin tuna; Chinook salmon; lingcod; Pacific halibut.
Chang/iStockphoto; Debbi Smirnoff/iStockphoto; via TeachAGirlToFish; Andrea Pokrzywinski/Flickr

Originally published on Thu June 19, 2014 1:36 pm

From red to white to orange to blue, fish flesh can land almost anywhere on the color spectrum.

What's behind this huge variation? A lot of things — from genetics to bile pigments. And parsing the rainbow can tell us something about where a fish came from, its swimming routine and what it ate.

Red yellowfin tuna: A classic of the sashimi counter, the yellowfin tuna is also the Michael Phelps of the fish world. And its athletic prowess has a lot to do with its ruby red flesh.

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Nuclear Waste
7:31 am
Tue June 17, 2014

Washington State, Energy Department Continue Talks Over Hanford Tank Cleanup

Originally published on Tue June 17, 2014 7:46 am

  Washington state and the U.S. Department of Energy just gave themselves a 40-day deadline. They need a clear cleanup plan for leaking tanks of radioactive waste at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation.

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