Earthfix Northwest Environmental News

NPR Story
11:30 am
Wed November 20, 2013

Group Sues Yacolt Mining Company Over Water Pollution

An environmental group is suing a mining company in Clark County for water pollution. Local resident David Rogers shows a photo of his bathtub filled with well water.

A Clark County environmental group has filed a lawsuit against a Yacolt mining operation, claiming years of pollution and violations of the federal Clean Water Act.

In a suit filed in U.S. District Court in Tacoma, Friends of the East Fork Lewis River claims that the Yacolt Mountain Quarry and its owners have discharged dirt, silt and other pollutants into tributaries of the East Fork. The suit names quarry operator J.L. Storedahl & Sons, Inc., company leaders and landowner Brent Rotschy as defendants.

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NPR Story
8:02 am
Wed November 20, 2013

First 'Megaload' Moves On Oregon Roads Sunday

Erik Zander of Omega Morgan discusses the megaload plans at a public meeting Monday night in John Day.

State transportation officials say Omega Morgan’s first oversized load to move through Eastern Oregon will hit the road in Umatilla the night of Sunday, Nov. 24.

Erik Zander, the Hillsboro-based company’s project manager, said at a meeting Monday night in John Day the date is not firm, as he doesn’t yet have the permit.

However, if the move does start Sunday, it could take about six nights to travel through the state under perfect conditions – or longer, with delays possible for weather and the holiday break, he said.

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NPR Story
1:56 pm
Tue November 19, 2013

Tesla Fire Investigation Launched

Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk is taking a proactive approach addressing concerns about safety for his company's luxury electric vehicle, the Model S, after three recent car fires. On his company’s blog, Musk writes,

“While we believe the evidence is clear that there is no safer car on the road than the Model S, we are taking three specific actions ... "

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NPR Story
12:02 pm
Tue November 19, 2013

Emergency Responders Prepare For Higher Risk Of Oil Spills In The Northwest

Several companies have proposed shipping more crude oil from the Bakken oil fields in North Dakota to the Northwest.

Northwest emergency responders are meeting in Portland Tuesday to discuss the increased potential for oil spills in the region.

Several oil-by-rail projects have been proposed in Washington state. The largest of those would be built at the Port of Vancouver if it is approved.

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NPR Story
3:26 pm
Mon November 18, 2013

Recovering 'The Lost Fish'

A new documentary hopes to bring awareness to the plight of the Pacific lamprey, a prehistoric fish whose numbers have dramatically declined in recent years.

Pacific lamprey are the oldest known fish in the Columbia River System. Fossils indicate they were here 450 million years ago.

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NPR Story
12:54 pm
Mon November 18, 2013

Comments On Longview Coal Export Project Reach 163,000

Millennium Bulk Terminals has proposed to export 44 million tons of coal per year through this site in Longview, Wash.

More than 163,000 public comments have flooded the environmental review of the Millennium coal export terminal proposed for Longview, Wash.

That's the number of letters, emails, and statements read aloud at public meetings as of Friday. It exceeds the 125,000 comments agencies received on the environmental review of the Gateway Pacific coal export project in Bellingham, Wash., earlier this year.

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NPR Story
10:29 am
Mon November 18, 2013

National Polling: American Electorate Sees Effects Of Climate Change And Wants Action

Professor Jon Krosnick of Stanford University has combined national survey data from the past decade on climate change.

More than 9,000 delegates from almost 200 countries are gathered in the Warsaw, Poland for U.N. meetings aimed at forging a new treaty to fight climate change, which would go into effect in 2020. But over this past weekend negotiations around international carbon markets to cut greenhouse gas emissions broke down as developing nations demanded that rich nations step up efforts to cut their emissions - rich nations like the United States.

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12:43 pm
Fri November 15, 2013

For Those Who Want To Avoid GMO Foods, There's An App For That

The Buycott app will tell you if a product was made by a company associated with the opposition to labeling genetically modified foods.

Mmm … lunchtime. These Beanfields Nacho Bean and Rice Chips sure are tasty. They also happen to be made by a company that hasn't fueled opposition to labeling genetically modified foods – according to the Buycott app I tried out today.

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2:35 pm
Thu November 14, 2013

Resolving Oregon's Truffle Kerfuffle

A haul of truffles, photographed with a pair of rulers to give a sense of scale. New rules will require truffle hunters to get permission before foraging for these fungi on private and state forests in Oregon.

Oregon’s Board of Forestry moved forward Thursday to regulate truffle hunting on state and private lands.

That means truffles will became Oregon’s first regulated forest product in nearly twenty years.

Truffles aren’t mushrooms, though they are fungi. Mushrooms grow above-ground, truffles underground.

This small distinction kept truffle hunting from being regulated on state and private forestlands the way mushrooms are.

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NPR Story
12:27 pm
Thu November 14, 2013

State Blocks Permits For Two Grays Harbor Oil Terminals

Two oil-by-train terminals proposed for the Port of Grays Harbor on the Washington coast were dealt a set back when state regulators withdrew permit approval.

A state regulatory board is withdrawing its approval of permits for two crude oil shipping terminals in Grays Harbor, Wash., saying backers have faied to address public safety and environmental issues.

The Quinault Indian Nation and several conservation groups successfully argued that permits issued for two terminals in Grays Harbor, Washington should be reversed.

"Those permits should have never been issued in the first place," said Fawn Sharp, president of the Quinalt Nation.

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