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.

A judge has ordered federal agencies to spill more water over Columbia and Snake river dams to help threatened and endangered salmon and steelhead, though not until next year after testing.

Driving up the coast toward Bay Center, Washington, it’s obvious when you start to approach Willapa Bay. Fifteen foot high piles of shucked empty oyster shells began to appear on the side of the road. This is an oyster town.

But it's also home to a sinking piece of history.

Oregon Gov. Kate Brown and Gov. Jay Inslee of Washington are banding together in support of clean energy. They met Saturday in Seattle to discuss concerns over the Trump administration’s efforts to eliminate policies that combat climate change.

“It doesn’t make sense for Oregon to do it alone; it makes sense when we do it in a regional basis,” Brown said, emphasizing that West Coast states need to work together.

Controversial Logging Project Debated In NE Oregon

Mar 24, 2017

There’s a tiny stretch of land in Northeastern Oregon that can inspire lofty description like this:

“An amazing treasure,” said Peter Barry, who lives in Joseph, Oregon. “I don’t want to extol its virtues too much because it’s already so crowded."

The Lostine Corridor is a narrow strip of land, surrounded by the designated wilderness. For 11 miles, it reaches up into the Eagle Cap, making it one of the most popular entrances to Oregon’s largest wilderness area. Running through the corridor is the Lostine, a National Wild and Scenic River.

Vancouver Approves Ethanol Terminal Without Crude Oil

Mar 24, 2017

An oil-by-rail terminal in Vancouver is off the table. The city approved a plan by the company NuStar that would allow it to ship and store ethanol, under the condition that it drop its proposal to handle crude oil.

Two years ago, NuStar proposed a plan to handle 22,000 barrels of oil a day. But the company wanted the city of Vancouver to allow it without doing an environmental impact statement. After the city refused, NuStar switched gears — deciding to move forward with a plan to store and export ethanol instead.

The Trump Administration has issued an executive order rolling back fuel economy standards for cars and trucks and is expected to do the same soon for the Clean Power Plan. Both were designed to put the United States on a path to lower greenhouse gas emissions.

The decision by automaker Volkswagen Group to cheat on diesel emissions tests means Oregon and Washington are in line for big payday.

The states plan to turn millions of dollars from the company’s settlement into cleaner air by replacing dirty old diesel engines.

But some say the money presents a golden opportunity not just to upgrade some old trucks, buses and construction equipment, but to start phasing them out altogether.

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.

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