Environment

Forest Management
2:09 pm
Thu March 6, 2014

Gilchrist State Forest To Add Nearly 29,000 Acres

The Gilchrist Forest in northern Klamath County.
Credit Oregon Department of Forestry

The Gilchrist State Forest south of Bend is adding nearly 29,000 acres. The Board of Forestry approved completion of the multi-year acquisition Wednesday.

Legislators first approved the purchase in 2010. The State acquired 43,000 acres that became the first new Oregon State Forest in 60 years. At the same time, The Conservation Fund bought about 25,000 acres directly adjacent with the intention of eventually selling it to the Oregon Department of Forestry. ODF spokesman John Pellissier says they aren't usually in the habit selling or purchasing land.

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Wanapum Dam
7:38 am
Wed March 5, 2014

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

Newly exposed riverbank sprawls out upstream on the Columbia River from Wanapum Dam. Grant County engineers have lowered the pool above the dam, to ease pressure on the structure that has a major crack in part of its spillway.
Credit Anna King

A situation on the Columbia River is rapidly unfolding with the damaged Wanapum Dam near Vantage, in Central Washington. Teams of engineers are scrambling to figure out what’s gone wrong with part of Wanapum’s spillway structure. Correspondent Anna King winded her way up the Columbia River to the dam, and files this investigative report.

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Climate Change
9:05 am
Tue March 4, 2014

Former NASA Scientist James Hansen On Climate Change

Dr. James Hansen
Credit Cassandra Profita

Until last year, James Hansen ran the Goddard Institute for Space Studies at NASA. In that role, he issued some of the earliest warnings about the risks of climate change.

Hansen was in Eugene this past weekend to give a keynote speech at the Environmental Law Conference. Before the speech, Hansen sat down with EarthFix reporter Cassandra Profita to talk about his new life as a public speaker and climate scientist at Columbia University.

Q: Dr. Hansen, it's been almost a year since you left NASA. How has your work changed?

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Energy
7:48 am
Sun March 2, 2014

Sen. Wyden: Hanford Tanks Like “Groundhog Day,” Problems Keep Repeating

U.S. Senator Ron Wyden
Credit Anna King

U.S. Senator Ron Wyden is saying cleanup at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation is like something out the movie “Groundhog Day.” In a boathouse on the Columbia River in Portland, Oregon,  Saturday, he said the problems at the nuclear site repeat over and over.

Senator Wyden says key documents at Hanford were kept from him, the State of Washington and the public.

Ron Wyden: “We were told in 2012 that this double-shelled tank … was an isolated issue. Now we have obtained documents indicating some very serious questions about whether that was actually the case.”

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Profile
6:00 am
Thu February 27, 2014

Eugene Attorney Represents Activists

Lauren Regan at her office in Eugene.
Credit Rachael McDonald

The northwest is famous for political activism-- WTO protests, tree-sits, Occupy… When activists get arrested, there's a law firm in Eugene that might represent them for no little or no money. Lauren Regan's Civil Liberties Defense Center celebrates its tenth year at the Public Interest Environmental Law Conference this weekend.

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Environment
7:32 pm
Wed February 26, 2014

ODF Hosts Discussion Sessions On New Forest Management Plan

Elliot State Forest
Credit Oregon Department of Forestry

The Oregon Department of Forestry (ODF) is drafting a new plan to better manage timber harvest, recreation, and wildlife habitat.

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Public Interest Environmental Law Conference
1:21 pm
Wed February 26, 2014

Law Conference Explores 6th Extinction

The Public Interest Environmental Law Conference is an annual event at the UO Law School.
Credit uo lawblog

Thousands of Environmental activists, lawyers and students will be at the University of Oregon in Eugene this weekend for the Public Interest Environmental Law Conference. The 3 day event begins Thursday afternoon.

The theme of the law conference this year is "Running into Running Out"

Brinson: "With the 6th largest mass extinction currently happening, we've got to do something. So hopefully, this conference can be an opportunity for people to figure some of this stuff out."

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Environment
9:10 am
Wed February 26, 2014

ODF Hosts Discussion Sessions On New Forest Management Plan

Elliott State Forest
Credit Oregon Department of Forestry

The Oregon Department of Forestry (ODF) is drafting a new plan to better manage timber harvest, recreation, and wildlife habitat.

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weather
6:00 am
Wed February 26, 2014

Storm Impacts Mt. Pisgah, OR Country Fair

Many trees at Mt Pisgah Arboretum were affected by the ice storm earlier this month.
Credit Mt Pisgah Arboretum

The 1999 fire that burned Mt. Pisgah grasslands also benefited the site by eradicating poison oak. Similarly, the winter storm earlier this month both damaged and enhanced the Lane County arboretum.  Tom LoCascio, Mt. Pisgah site manager, says the deciduous forest got hit:

LoCascio:  “We saw a lot of tops breaking out of trees.  It seemed like the oaks in particular took it pretty hard, and some of the big leaf maples as well.”

In assessing damage, LoCascio says, sometimes we consider only the individual species, the single oak tree,

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Endangered Species
6:43 am
Fri February 21, 2014

Stalking Puget Sound Steelhead with Science

Crew members of the research vessel "Chasina" drop an acoustic telemetry receiver down into Puget Sound. The device will record the passage of tagged steelhead.
Credit Ashley Ahearn

Steelhead in Puget Sound have been listed as “threatened” under the Endangered Species Act since 2007.

Millions of dollars have been spent improving the habitat of this iconic fish, but the population isn’t increasing.
In fact, a lot of the fish aren’t even making it out of Puget Sound.
And scientists can’t pinpoint why. KUOW’s Ashley Ahearn jumped in a boat with one scientist who’s looking for answers.

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