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Andrew Nixon/CPR

Walnuts are one of the highest value crops in California -- bringing in almost $2 billion every year. But keeping the crop free of destructive insects can be costly.

Scientists are studying if walnut growers could reduce their pest control costs by employing hungry bats.

Friends of Civic Stadium

Fans of Civic Stadium in Eugene had grand plans for the old baseball park, vacant for years. 

The plans turned to ashes when the stadium grandstand burned to the ground in late June. 

But feelings about Civic run deep, and something may yet emerge, phoenix-like, from the ashes. 

Cable Crossing Fire "Winding Down"

Aug 6, 2015
Kyle Reed/DFPA

FINAL UPDATE: SUNDAY, AUGUST 9, 9:00 A.M. ...  The size of the fire is 1,857 acres and is now 80 percent contained. The fire is expected to be fully contained by Wednesday, August 12.

Oregon Department of Forestry’s Type 1 Incident Management Team 3, Incident Commander Link Smith, handed the fire over to a smaller type 3 organization this morning. The Team would like to again thank the Glide community for their kind hospitality and support during our stay.

 

Will A New Casino Threaten A Tribe's Economic Base?

Aug 5, 2015
Ann McGarry/OPB

Simple white crosses dot the grounds. Brittle yellow grass crunches under foot.

“This is the tribal cemetery,” said Justin Martin a member of the Confederated Tribes of the Grand Ronde and their lobbyist. “This is one of the few places we had that were left with after termination.”

Kerry Greene from the Klamath National Forest sent us this map of the wildfires currently burning in northern California.

Thanks, Kerry!

The discovery of a 1922 version of Happy Birthday means that the 1935 copyright is no longer valid.

Wikimedia

The opponents of the Jordan Cove liquified natural gas (LNG) export terminal and pipeline are willing to go a long way to press their case.  232 miles, in fact. 

Pipeline opponents plan to "Hike The Pipe" later this summer, walking the entire length of the proposed pipeline route from the Klamath Basin to Coos Bay. 

They are collecting permissions from landowners and donations from supporters for the walk, scheduled for August 22nd through September 26th. 

weebly.com

Don Crossfield retired from teaching full-time three years ago. 

And people still can't stop thanking him for his work, and rewarding it. 

The former Roseburg High School math teacher (he still subs) recently picked up an award from the Oregon Council of Teachers of Mathematics for his years of making his subject matter crystal-clear to students. 

'Wild' Draws Huge Crowds To The Pacific Crest Trail

Aug 4, 2015
Leslie McClurg

The Pacific Crest Trail runs 2,650 miles from Mexico to Canada. Usually, a few hundred hardy souls make the trek every year. But this year, the number of people attempting the arduous journey is in the thousands.

U.S. Army/Public Domain

Everybody supports kids learning to read.  But factions begin to form over how and where. 

The people who run Josephine Community Libraries hope many people support kids learning to read, and nurturing a love of reading, in public libraries. 

JCLI has a tough task: running a county library system with no county operating support. 

So it is now working to crowdfund children's libraries in the county. 

Geoffrey Riley/JPR

A lot of us saw smoke plumes rise in the air from nearby wildfires. 

And then we didn't see much at all, as the smoke settled into the valleys and obscured the view.  Worse, it created potential health challenges through worsening air quality

Parts of the Rogue Valley spent the weekend with air listed in the "hazardous" range. 

Retired environmental toxicologist Bruce Hope once worked for the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality and still volunteers on its Air Toxics Advisory Committee.

Rowan Moore Gerety/NWPR

The logging in National Forests these days is often called “thinning” or “restoration.” The forest service allows harvest of small trees and leaves bigger ones intact, in hopes of making the forest more resilient to fire. But companies that rely on that timber say it’s a business model that makes it hard to break even.

Wikimedia Commons

The letters G, M, and O aren't even words, but they've certainly become fighting words.

Witness the U.S. House of Representatives' recent passage of HR 1599. 

Officially, it's the "Safe and Accurate Food Labeling Act of 2015," a move to prevent states from passing their own genetically modified (GMO) food labeling laws. 

Which is why anti-GMO groups call it "the DARK Act"--for "Deny Americans the Right to Know"--and some other names we won't print. 

One of the most-debated provisions concerns local bans on GMO crops, as in Jackson County. 

Would the bill prohibit those or not?  We hear both opinions in this hour... Gail Greenman from the Oregon Farm Bureau says there's no such provision. 

She'll be followed by George Kimbrell at the Center for Food Safety, who says there is. 

Rail Fire Adds to Hayfork Fire Woes

Jul 31, 2015

UPDATE: SUNDAY, AUGUST 2, 11:00 A.M. ... JPR's reporting on these fires has now been combined with our reporting on new fires in Trinity County. For updated information, follow this link ...

  

NASA/Public Domain

Nobody's in a position to wave a magic wand and make global warming stop.

One of the frustrating things about dealing with the issue is its vastness. 

But many people have pointed out the need for action within our communities, and that's what CivicSpark is about. 

It is an AmericaCorps program charged by California's governor with helping local communities address climate change. 

Wikimedia

The recent triple-digit temperatures across the region arrived with plenty of warnings and advice for how to protect ourselves from heat-related health issues.

These are issues known well to the people at the Human Cardiovascular Control Lab at the University of Oregon. 

They've spent plenty of time looking into the effects of heat on the body, and what those effects will do if left unchecked. 

Courtesy of KRCR TV

UPDATE: FRIDAY, JULY 31, 11:11 A.M ... Containment has improved, evacuations are lifted, and the cause of the China Fire remains under investigation. 

CalFire

UPDATE: FRIDAY, JULY 31, 10:30 AM ... 

BUCK FIRE: 100% contained at 16 acres. 

QUEEN FIRE: Now 85% contained and still at 158 acres. 

Patricia Murphy/KUOW

The massive data breach at the federal Office of Personnel Management that was revealed last month has exposed the Social Security numbers and personnel records nearly every federal worker.

The implications for federal employees, military service members and the intelligence community could be huge. But at a very basic level, US service members have been at high risk for identity theft for decades.

Laurie Avocado/Wikimedia Commons

Legal marijuana is a rapidly-growing reality. Four states, including Oregon and Washington, have legalized recreational use of the drug. Several more – including California – could well do so by the end of next year. Forty states have legalized it in some form for medicinal use.

Now, US Senators from Oregon, Washington and Colorado hope to start breaking down the federal barriers that lock many legal cannabis businesses out of routine banking and financial services.

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