environment

Weather
6:27 am
Tue November 20, 2012

Record Rain Falls On Seattle, Brings Snow To Mountains

Meghann Kelley helps a group of wet elementary school kids board a bus for a field trip.
KUOW/Deborah Wang

Western Washington is bracing for more precipitation after record heavy rains snarled traffic and caused localized flooding on Monday.

According to the National Weather Service, 2.03 inches of rain fell at Sea-Tac Airport between midnight and 5:00 p.m. Monday. That breaks the previous record for the day of 1.23 inches set in 1962.

The National Weather Service says a second storm is expected to hit the region Tuesday, and an even stronger weather system will move in on Wednesday, bringing high winds to the coast.

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Environment
9:00 am
Mon November 19, 2012

Defending Nature With Sound

Boats used to chase dolphins in Taiji, Japan.
Flickr Photo/Michael Q Todd

Sound recordist Martyn Stewart says he started working for Mother Nature at an early age, “fighting for the planet and her critters.” Stewart has captured the sounds and plights of animals around the world for more than 150 films, documenting everything from fox hunts in the UK to dolphin slaughters in Japan. His latest film is “Dawn to Death: The Dolphins of Taiji.”

Also this hour: we sift the details of the Hostess bankruptcy with Fortune magazine's David Kaplan and talk with veteran broadcaster Bryan Johnson, who retired from Seattle’s KOMO 4 earlier this month after 53 years with the station.

Economy
9:04 am
Fri November 16, 2012

Wash. Ready To Hang Up On Mandatory Delivery Of White Pages

Phone books left om the street for recycling. Photo by Lulu Vision via Flickr

Originally published on Thu November 15, 2012 5:16 pm

OLYMPIA, Wash. - Utility regulators are on the verge of ending the automatic delivery of White Pages phone books to Washington households. Legislation to do the same in Oregon hasn't gone anywhere.

In Washington and Oregon, state law requires the local phone company to deliver a phone book to each landline customer. But telecom companies contend most consumers no longer want a printed copy of the White Pages dropped on their doorsteps.

Frontier Communications government affairs manager Carl Gipson made that case to state regulators in Olympia.

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Elections 2012
9:00 am
Wed November 7, 2012

Election 2012: Recap, Reaction and Analysis

Washington gubernatorial candidates Jay Inslee and Rob McKenna.
Credit Jay Inslee and Rob McKenna campaigns

The votes have been counted and another election day has come and gone. We recap the major races, reflect on the new reality of our political landscape and hear your reaction to last night's results at 206.543.KUOW (5869) or weekday@kuow.org.

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Environment
9:42 am
Tue November 6, 2012

New Report: Coal Terminal Means Traffic In Seattle

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.

Read the full story on KUOW's Earthfix

Environment
7:00 pm
Mon November 5, 2012

RISE: Climate Change and Coastal Communities, Part III

Chuey Cazares and his family live in the tiny coastal town of Alviso at the southern tip of the San Francisco Bay .
Credit Jan Sturmann

Chuey Cazares has lived all of his 21 years in Alviso, a tiny hamlet jutting into the salt ponds at the southern tip of the San Francisco Bay. Chuey works as a deck hand on a shrimp boat off Alviso's shores.


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Gardening
10:00 am
Tue October 30, 2012

Greendays Gardening Tackles Winter Gardening Questions

Late autumn folliage.
Flickr photo/Haris Bahrudin

Weekday green thumbs Marty Wingate, Willi Galloway and Greg Rabourn join us to answer your flower, vegetable and native plant questions. Need guidance for your garden? Call us at 206.543.5869 or email weekday@kuow.org.

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Energy
2:55 pm
Thu October 25, 2012

$178 Million Smart Grid Project Launches In Northwest

Jamie Rowe, a graduate student at the University of Washington, shows Senator Maria Cantwell how personal energy monitoring technology works.
KUOW Photo/Ashley Ahearn

The University of Washington got its launch Wednesday as the country's biggest testing ground for smart grid technology.

Smart grid is a catch-all term for something power providers are still trying to figure out — namely, how do you use modern technology, like the Internet, to manage how much power is flowing through the grid at any given time?

Read the full story on KUOW's EarthFix

Food
10:35 am
Wed October 24, 2012

Northwest Wild Mushrooms In Short Supply

Photo courtesy of the U.S. Forest Service.

Originally published on Wed October 24, 2012 1:28 pm

Northwest wild mushrooms are in short supply this year. That’s had a big impact on the region’s lucrative mushroom hunting industry. It’s also changed what’s on fall restaurant menus in the Northwest and across the nation.

At Pagliacci Pizza in Seattle this autumn customers are often coming home to their families without the coveted mushroom Primo Pizza. The Northwest’s bleak mushroom crop means sometimes the stores cut back on the number of pies, or don’t have them at all.

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Environment
10:00 am
Tue October 23, 2012

Writer Craig Childs On Nature's Cataclysms, Large And Small

Craig Childs
JT Thomas Photo

Earth is an always-changing planet. Earthquakes thrust new mountains upward, sea ice melts, oceans rise, deserts spread, species die, civilizations collapse. Award-winning writer and commentator Craig Childs traveled to the desolate places on Earth where forces of nature are forever remaking the planet. He joins us to discuss his newest book, “Apocalyptic Planet: Field Guide to the Everending Earth.”

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Energy Policy
8:00 pm
Mon October 22, 2012

The Power Of One Election And America’s Energy Future, Hour Two

In the next four years, the United States will have one fundamental energy policy challenge: How to make the country more self-sufficient. Listen to stories about the next frontiers of energy development and the fields of exploration that may help the US produce more energy at home and import less from abroad.

Hanford
5:57 pm
Mon October 22, 2012

Hanford Managers Confirm Slow Leak In Radioactive Waste Tank

Routine periodic visual monitoring (via camera) of the AY-102 annulus found material that was never before seen. Photo courtesy of U.S. Department of Energy

RICHLAND, Wash. – Managers at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation have confirmed that a radioactive waste tank has a slow leak. That waste isn’t getting into the environment.

This house-sized vessel is known as AY-102. It’s made of steel and concrete and buried underground to shield workers from high levels of radiation. It’s full of hazardous radioactive sludge left over from plutonium production here.

It was designed to last for about 40 years, and it’s already had its 44th birthday. The tank is leaking into the space between its two hulls in two spots.

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Energy Policy
8:00 pm
Mon October 15, 2012

The Power Of One Election And America’s Energy Future, Hour One

BURN: An Energy Journal

President Barack Obama and his opponent, Mitt Romney, share one broad policy goal: greater energy independence for the United States. They differ on how to achieve it.

In this hour of BURN, host Alex Chadwick goes to the sometime swing state of Pennsylvania to examine fracking, the politically volatile exploration technology that has made natural gas the single most important element remaking our energy economy.

Climate Change
8:52 pm
Fri October 12, 2012

Anote Tong, President Of Kiribati, Considers The Options For A Drowning Nation

President Anote Tong of Kiribati, assisting with Mangrove planting.
Office of the President of Kiribati

The South Pacific island nation of Kiribati (pronounced Kir-uh-bahs) is comprised of 32 atolls and a raised coral island. It is the only nation in all four hemispheres of the Earth. But the future of the 100,000 residents is uncertain because of fears that global climate change will raise the ocean levels, making Kiribati, which is only 6 feet above sea level, uninhabitable by the 2050s.

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News
5:21 pm
Mon October 8, 2012

Washington Governor Extends Burn Ban, Declares State of Emergency

Ongoing Washington wildfires and dry conditions have resulted in a statewide burn ban.
(Flickr photo/Washington Department of Natural Resources))

Dryer than normal conditions prompted Washington Governor Chris Gregoire to declare a state of emergency and extend a ban on outdoor fires. Outdoor burning is banned in all counties until October 15. The state is experiencing a rare stretch of dry weather.

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