"PORTLAND, Ore. — Oregon wildlife officials have started killing California sea lions that threaten a fragile and unique type of trout in the Willamette River, a body of water that’s miles inland from the coastal areas where the massive carnivorous aquatic mammals usually congregate to feed."
Northwest (OR WA)
The new year will likely mean subpoenas on EPA’s FOIA response policies, as a Democrat takes the chair in the House Oversight Committee amid charges the agency is choking off politically sensitive record requests. And are new laws in a dozen states making coverage of pipeline protests a felony? That, plus air emission exemptions for animal feedlot operators and data on illegal fishing. All in the latest issue of the WatchDog.
"Congress has agreed to make it easier to kill sea lions threatening fragile runs of salmon in the Northwest."
The upward trends for renewable energy sources like wind and solar are a sure source of news for 2019, even if challenging political, economic and technical obstacles remain. This week’s TipSheet explains why, plus suggests stories to look for, notes the points of possible contention and offers a range of reporting resources to turn to.
"With scientists warning that the Northwest’s beloved killer whales are on the brink of extinction, Washington Gov. Jay Inslee announced dramatic plans Thursday to help the population recover — including $1.1 billion in spending and a partial whale-watching ban."
Environmental justice-related stories are expected to get more attention in the news media in 2019. But that’s not because the challenge of protecting marginalized communities from lopsided environmental impacts is being met. This week’s TipSheet explains, in a look-ahead to environmental justice stories making the news, the many forms the problem takes, the many communities affected and the emerging notion of “climate justice.”
"An industrious but finicky pest could be the key to restoring Washington State’s wetlands and salmon populations."
The vast and widely used PFAS family of chemicals is causing serious worries across the country, as it turns up in more and more drinking water systems. Pressure to regulate it is also growing, but with mixed results. This week’s TipSheet offers a detailed look-ahead on this big, developing story, with a walk-through of the context, what the EPA is (and isn’t) doing, and why states are stepping up.
"A leafy little tunnel runs through the undergrowth along the Black River in the Seattle suburb of Renton: an otter trail. It’s in hidey-holes like this that river otters leave detailed evidence of human misdeeds. Just downstream, in the Duwamish River, droppings left by river otters reveal toxic PCBs and other industrial waste."