Environment

Environment & Planning

Updated at 12:25 p.m. Thursday

Oregon State Police report hazardous road and weather on I-5 between Salem and Eugene and urge caution.  Request people not drive unless they have to. 

All Lane Community College Campuses will close today (Thursday, February 6) at 1 p.m.

Counties
Benton County and City of Corvallis offices are closing due to snow and icy conditions across the county as of 10 a.m. on Thursday, Feb. 6.

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

The Oregon Department of Forestry has reached a settlement with conservation groups that had sued to prevent logging in forests that are home to a threatened seabird.   The agreement was filed Wednesday in U-S District Court in Eugene and still must be approved by a judge.

Rachael McDonald

A small minnow native to Oregon's Willamette Valley could be removed from the Federal Endangered Species List. The Oregon chub is the first fish to be de-listed because its population has been restored. The announcement came Tuesday near Eugene.

The Oregon Chub was listed as endangered 20 years ago. At that time there were only about 1000 of the tiny fish in the Willamette Basin. Three years ago it was moved to threatened status. Now, biologists say there are more than 100 thousand Oregon chub.

Bangs: "Bouncing around in my hand. But that's a little Oregon chub."

Oregon Department of Fish & Wildlife

 

A tiny, unsung fish that lives only in Oregon's Willamette Valley is suddenly in the limelight. The Oregon chub is a minnow that was listed as endangered more than 20 years ago. But it’s on the rebound. Three years ago, the species was upgraded to threatened status. Officials are now petitioning to make Oregon chub the first fish ever to be recovered and removed from the endangered species list.

Auer: "Hank! Come."

John Auer and his dog Hank are in the middle of his family's 900-acre farm near Monmouth.

Shaun Che

The Cascades could see some much-needed snow this weekend, as cold air moves into the Northwest.

The snowpack so far this winter in the Cascades is low – really low.

Pierce: “The mountain areas, and especially on the east side as well, very low snowpack… Some of the lowest snowpack totals that we’ve seen in a couple decades.  In some cases, 20 and 30 year lows.”

Wikipedia

The northwest is in for another arctic blast this week. Snow is likely this weekend in the lower elevations, including the south Willamette Valley.

Andy Bryant is with the National Weather Service in Portland. He says it will be very cold this week in Oregon. In the Willamette Valley daytime highs will be in the low to mid 30s Wednesday and Thursday. He says overnight lows will be in the teens.

Killing One Owl Species To Save Another

Jan 31, 2014
Liam Moriarty, JPR

It’s been nearly 20 years since the Northwest Forest Plan scaled back logging across the region, in large part to preserve habitat for the endangered northern spotted owl. But the spotted owl continues to decline. Scientists blame the larger, more aggressive barred owl for pushing the spotted owl out of its natural habitat. Now, federal wildlife managers have begun shooting barred owls to see if removing the competition will allow spotted owls to recover. A look at the controversy over the wisdom -- and ethics -- of killing one owl species to save another.

Spotted Frog Proposal Revives Endangered Species Fears

Jan 30, 2014
Oregon Fish & Wildlife

Twenty-three years ago, the listing of the northern spotted owl under the Endangered Species Act was one of the factors that led to a sharply reduced Northwest timber harvest. Now, wildlife officials are proposing to list the Oregon spotted frog. If approved, this listing would not have nearly the far-reaching impact the spotted owl listing had. But, officials in Klamath County are pushing back against a proposal they fear will lead to intrusive and economically-damaging regulations.

Ashley Ahearn

It’s been almost two months since China banned all shellfish imports from most of the west coast after finding high levels of arsenic in a sample from Washington.
The move has hit Washington hard. Particularly the geoduck clam industry.
These long-necked oddities are a delicacy in China… but here in the Northwest, not so much. That might be changing. Ashley Ahearn headed to one of Seattle’s hottest restaurants to find out how one chef is whetting appetites for this local clam.

It’s been almost 3 years since the earthquake and tsunami struck Japan. Hundreds of millions of gallons of radioactive water were released from the Fukushima nuclear plant. Fish there have been contaminated and some Japanese fisheries are still closed due to ongoing leaks. That’s made many people nervous about eating fish caught on this side of the Pacific Ocean.

It’s a gray Sunday morning at the Ballard farmer’s market in Seattle.

[Market sound “Hey Charlie. You got your seahawks gear on.”]

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