EarthFix

News Fixed on the Environment.

EarthFix is a public media partnership of KLCC, Oregon Public Broadcasting, Idaho Public Television, KCTS9 Seattle, KUOW Puget Sound Public Radio, Northwest Public Radio and Television, Jefferson Public Radio, and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.

The Middle Fork of the Snoqualmie River rushes over 40 miles from the North Cascades down into Puget Sound. It’s a big river, with enough rapids and undercurrents that only expert kayakers can navigate it.

“I love this place,” says Mark Boyer, who’s been coming here since the 1980s. “My friends get discouraged with me. They do interventions on me to get me out of the Middle Fork.”

If you’ve lived in Oregon long, chances are you’ve visited a place you learned about on "Oregon Field Guide."

For 28 seasons, the show has transported audiences to just about every corner of the state, from a trek in the Wallowa Mountains to a stroll around the town of Dufur. And the man behind it all? Steve Amen, the host of the show since its first season on OPB TV in 1989.

The Oregon Department of Environmental Quality expects to lose more than 30 people in the agency’s core programs protecting air and water quality because of President Trump’s proposed cuts to the Environmental Protection Agency budget, according to an internal DEQ memo.

Seattle's Gas Works Park About To Undergo Toxic Cleanup

Mar 20, 2017

Kite flyers, picnickers, and Ultimate players treasure Seattle’s Gas Works Park, whose famous towers and pipes were once part of a coal gasification plant on the shore of Lake Union that lit up early Seattleites’ homes.

But beneath the grass lies a more insidious legacy of the park’s industrial past: toxic waste.

Bend Says Goodbye To 'Oregon Field Guide' Host Steve Amen

Mar 18, 2017

Friday night was not short on smiles at the Tower Theatre in Bend, Oregon. OPB members and guests from around Central Oregon said goodbye to "Oregon Field Guide" host Steve Amen, who is retiring after 28 years on the show.

Theatergoers saw an advance screening of a "Field Guide" tribute to Amen and his contributions to OPB and the Pacific Northwest.

"You come away from a program that you've done and you feel better about yourself. You feel like you've learned more about the world ... I just want to thank you for that," one member told Amen after the show.

The Jordan Cove Liquefied Natural Gas project is still alive, despite being denied by federal regulators last year. Canadian energy company Veresen has resubmitted its plans and are holding a new round of required public meetings this week.

Backers of the export terminal propose to build a pipeline to bring natural gas from the inland West to the Port of Coos Bay on the South Oregon Coast. There, it will be liquefied and exported to markets in Asia.

The wet and cold winter may have been a doozy for urban Oregonians, but for farmers all that snow was good news.

"For agricultural users that means that we are expecting a full supply of irrigation water since most of our reservoirs are going to be filling or are nearly full by the end of the runoff season," said Mary Mellema, a hydrologist with the Bureau of Reclamation.

In Malheur County, for example, the Owyhee Reservoir is expected to be full for the first time in five years. The hearty snowpack also means that all regions of Oregon are now considered out of drought.

Washington state Sen. Doug Ericksen was paid $11,438 for his first four weeks working for the Trump administration’s Environmental Protection Agency, with a listed annual salary of $161,900, according to documents obtained under the Freedom of Information Act.

Hunters, fishermen and environmental activists: it’s not often these groups are mentioned in the same breath. But recently they’re finding themselves standing shoulder to shoulder over the issue of public lands.

Despite having an avid hunter in Ryan Zinke leading up the Interior Department, which oversees the Bureau of Land Management and the National Park Service, there’s a sense that calls to sell off or transfer public lands are gaining traction.

A federal judge in Medford, Oregon, ruled Tuesday that several environmental groups can intervene in a lawsuit aimed at preventing the expansion the Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument in southern Oregon.

During his final days in office, President Obama expanded the national monument by about 48,000 acres. The monument was first established by President Clinton.

The judge’s ruling means Oregon Wild, the Wilderness Society, the Soda Mountain Wilderness Council and other groups will be allowed to intervene in a lawsuit filed by Murphy Timber Investments.

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