environment

Ski Resort Damages
8:46 am
Wed March 12, 2014

Intentional Avalanche Destroys Crystal Mountain Chairlift

The remains of a slab avalanche at Crystal Mountain.
Crystal Mountain Resort

An avalanche destroyed a chairlift at the Crystal Mountain resort near Mount Rainier on Monday afternoon when the resort was closed. The avalanche was intentionally set off by the resort's ski patrol and no one was hurt.

Despite the destruction, patrollers say they have no regrets.

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Hanford Site
8:38 am
Wed March 12, 2014

Hanford Whistleblowers: Senate Hearing Forces Few Answers Into The Open

File photo of Hanford whistlerblower Walt Tamosaitis testifying before the Senate Subcommittee on Contracting Oversight in 2011.
US Senate

Originally published on Tue March 11, 2014 4:17 pm

In Washington, D.C. Tuesday, Hanford whistleblowers Donna Busche and Walt Tamosaitis weren’t allowed to speak before a Senate hearing.

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Wanapum Dam
8:35 am
Wed March 12, 2014

Old Questions About Newly-Exposed Bones On Columbia River Shore

Newly exposed riverbank sprawls out upstream on the Columbia River from Wanapum Dam
Anna King Northwest News Network

Originally published on Tue March 11, 2014 6:17 pm

Grant County officials and Native Americans are patrolling round the clock to keep sacred and sensitive sites protected on miles of exposed Columbia River shoreline.

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Disaster Debris
8:34 am
Wed March 12, 2014

Three Years Later, Where Did Japanese Tsunami Debris Go?

File photo of a fishing skiff found on the Washington coast in May 2013.
Eyewitness photo Wash. Marine Debris Task Force

Originally published on Tue March 11, 2014 4:26 pm

It's been exactly three years since a huge tsunami in March 2011 took thousands of lives in Japan and washed whole villages out to sea.

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Natural Disaster
3:44 pm
Tue March 11, 2014

Reconstructing Japan Three Years After The Earthquake And Tsunami

People mourn for victims of the March 11, 2011 earthquake and tsunami, in Tokyo, Tuesday, March 11, 2014.
AP Photo/Eugene Hoshiko

Marcie Sillman talks with Seattle Times science reporter Sandi Doughton about Japan's efforts to rebuild after the devastating earthquake and tsunami on March 11, 2011.

EarthFix Reports
9:08 am
Tue March 11, 2014

An Undammed River’s Sediment Brings New Life Downstream

About 3 million cubic yards of sediment have been flushed down the Elwha River since dam removal began in 2011. That’s only 16 percent of what’s expected to move downstream in the next five years.
Credit EarthFix Photo/Katie Campbell

Anne Shaffer sits on the sandy shoreline of the Elwha River and looks around in amazement. Just two years ago, this area would have been under about 20 feet of water.

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Population 'Irruption'
2:28 am
Tue March 11, 2014

Trapping And Tracking The Mysterious Snowy Owl

Meredith Rizzo/NPR

Originally published on Wed March 12, 2014 8:02 am

This is Hungerford, a large female snowy owl. Last summer she was just a hatchling — a gray ball of fuzz in the middle of the Arctic tundra. In the fall, newly equipped with adult plumage, she flew thousands of miles south until she reached the coast of Maryland. And this winter, she became an important part of an unprecedented research project.

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Black Gold
12:06 am
Tue March 11, 2014

Turning Food Waste Into Fuel Takes Gumption And Trillions Of Bacteria

The digester eggs at Newtown Creek Wastewater Treatment Plant in Brooklyn contain millions of gallons of black sludge.
Courtesy of New York City Department of Environmental Protection

Originally published on Wed March 12, 2014 10:12 am

Every year, Americans send millions of tons of food to the landfill. What if you could use all of those pizza crusts and rotten vegetables to heat your home? That's already happening in one unlikely laboratory: the Newtown Creek Wastewater Treatment Plant in Brooklyn.

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EarthFix Reports
8:45 am
Mon March 10, 2014

All-Nighter On Climate Change To Keep US Senators Occupied

U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., (center) tours PGE's Smart Power Center in Salem, Ore. Wyden and other Northwest Democratic senators plan to take part in an all-night climate change talkathon on the U.S. Senate floor.
Credit Flickr Photo/Portland General Electric (CC BY-NC-ND)

They don’t have plans for a filibuster, since they lack a bill and a scheduled vote. But more than two dozen Democratic U.S. lawmakers do have a lot to say about the perils of climate change — along with a free Monday night and access to the floor of the U.S. Senate.

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EarthFix Reports
8:43 am
Mon March 10, 2014

Report Looks At Columbia Generating Station Safety

A new report from the Union of Concerned Scientists says the Northwest’s only commercial nuclear power plant reported three safety problems in 2013. Officials at the plant say the problems have been fixed.
Flickr Creative Commons: NRCgov

Originally published on Fri March 7, 2014 4:08 pm

RICHLAND, Wash. -- A new report from the Union of Concerned Scientists says the Northwest’s only commercial nuclear power plant reported three safety problems in 2013. Officials at the plant say the problems have been fixed.

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Cracked Dam
8:19 am
Fri March 7, 2014

Exposed Shoreline Behind Damaged Wanapum Dam Closed To Public

Grant County engineers have lowered water behind the Wanapum Dam to ease pressure on the crack in part of its spillway.
Anna King Northwest News Network

Originally published on Thu March 6, 2014 5:46 pm

Officials in Grant County, Wash., are asking the public to stay away from the shoreline behind the damaged Wanapum Dam.

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Urbanization
9:34 am
Thu March 6, 2014

‘Department Of Hometown Security’ With Majora Carter

Majora Carter
ced.berkeley.edu

In a way, Majora Carter’s dog is partially responsible for the existence of a Bronx park. More than a decade ago, Carter was pulled by her dog into a vacant, trashed lot and onto the banks of the Bronx River. After securing a USDA Forest Service program grant, Carter worked with community groups over five years to build the award-winning Hunts Point Riverside Park.

Carter is an urban revitalization strategist who examines the connection between urbanization and the environment. She spoke at the University of Washington’s Kane Hall on January 22, 2014, as part of the UW Graduate School lecture series.

EarthFix Reports
7:40 am
Thu March 6, 2014

Klamath Tribes And Ranchers Seek Water Solutions In New Agreement

The Klamath Basin spans northern California and southern Oregon and has seen frequent water crises between the farming, ranching, tribal and environmental communities.
Devan Schwartz

Originally published on Wed March 5, 2014 12:00 pm

An agreement announced Wednesday between ranchers and Native American tribes seeks to resolve contentious water rights issues in the Klamath Basin, a drought-ridden region spanning southern Oregon and northern California.

Amidst a deep drought last summer, the Klamath Tribes and the federal government called on their senior water rights –- meaning they received access to limited water supplies.

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Environment
3:58 pm
Wed March 5, 2014

World's Largest Caspian Tern Colony Could Be Relocated

A Caspian tern snatches a fish out of the water.
Flickr Photo/TJ Gehling (CC BY-NC-ND)

Steve Scher talks with Dan Roby, wildlife ecology professor at the Oregon State University, about a plan to relocate a colony of salmon-eating Caspian terns from the mouth of the Columbia River.

Cracked Dam
8:57 am
Wed March 5, 2014

Outside Experts Weigh In On Columbia River's Damaged Wanapum Dam

File photo of Wanapum Dam
Grant County PUD

Originally published on Wed March 5, 2014 2:22 pm

In central Washington state, teams of engineers are scrambling to figure out what’s gone wrong with part of the Wanapum Dam’s spillway structure.

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