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Environment

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 By Marcy Stamper    Environment 

One year into the Methow climate plan

Switching to energy-saving appliances for heating and cooling. Building a water bank to preserve water for local agriculture. Adding charging stations for electric vehicles.... — Updated 11/17/2022

 

WDFW records cougar attacks on wolves; four confirmed since 2013

The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) recently reported evidence that cougars are killing wolves in Washington. By using radio collar data, WDFW staff were able to... — Updated 11/17/2022

 
 By Julia Lerner    Environment 

DNR cancels leases for last 2 net-pen salmon farms in Puget Sound

The Washington State Department of Natural Resources (DNR) has canceled the two remaining finfish net-pen aquaculture leases in Puget Sound, officials announced Monday night. The tw... — Updated 11/17/2022

 

WDFW acquires shrub-steppe lands in Rendezvous area

Mule deer and other wildlife will benefit from an additional 220 acres of protected shrub-steppe in the Rendezvous area recently purchased by the Washington Department of Fish and... — Updated 11/11/2022

 

Old Cedars golf course reopens as Gordy Jolma Family Natural Area

What was once the Cedars at Salmon Creek Golf Course officially reopened on Nov. 2 as the Gordy Jolma Family Natural Area. The remnants of sand traps were the only clear signs that... — Updated 11/11/2022

 

Willapa Bay green crab war enters new phase

OCEAN PARK - They can crawl, but they can't hide. The war on an invasive crab wreaking havoc on Willapa Bay has entered a new phase, with scientists implementing an innovative inter... — Updated 10/27/2022

 

What's the Deal With: Bellingham's plum shortage?

If you were looking forward to a bountiful plum harvest in Bellingham this fall, you aren't alone if your gathering efforts seem fruitless. Local plum trees might produce less... — Updated 10/13/2022

 

Volunteers tackling growing amount of roadside litter

Conner Smith added another piece of litter to his already packed trash bag. "It hurts my soul to see people take advantage of a place so pristine," he said while pausing his work al... — Updated 10/5/2022

 

A 'desperate' year for bears in search of sustenance

Hungry bears have been unusually persistent and destructive in seeking food near homes in the Methow Valley this year, in some cases repeatedly breaking through electric fences to... — Updated 9/29/2022

 

Aleutian Isle fishing vessel recovered after 39 days

The Aleutian Isle fishing vessel has been removed from the waters off San Juan Island after 39 days, the U.S. Coast Guard announced Thursday night. Efforts to recover the vessel,... — Updated 9/23/2022

 

Wildfires close trails, bring smoke to valley

The Methow Valley Ranger District has closed additional trails from the Harts Pass area north to the Canadian border and west to the Ross Lake National Recreation Area because of... — Updated 9/15/2022

 

Jellyfish Stranded in Staggering Numbers

A mass stranding of lion's mane jellyfish shocked Key Peninsula beach walkers during the second week of August - and made swimmers think twice about getting in the water. "I have... — Updated 9/8/2022

 

Whidbey Island waters dyed red for shellfish health

The waters around Whidbey Island will be dyed red Monday, Sept. 12, to allow the state Department of Health (DOH) to study wastewater movement in the region. DOH will be working in the waters beginning Friday and will remain until... — Updated 9/8/2022

 

Aleutian Isle fishing vessel still underwater 10 days later

Ten days after it sank, the Aleutian Isle is still on the seafloor. The 49-foot fishing vessel, which sank off the west coast of San Juan Island on Aug. 13, is sitting in waters... — Updated 8/24/2022

 

Green burial provides families meaningful experience

WHATCOM - A grassy field, open skies, fresh air and birds in song. Trees and plants whose colors change with the seasons. These are ways someone might describe The Meadow. The... — Updated 8/18/2022

 

Drayton Harbor Oyster Company seeks oyster farm expansion in face of water concerns

Drayton Harbor Oyster Company (DHO) is seeking to expand its oyster growing operations to add an off-bottom farm in a cleaner area of Drayton Harbor as water quality issues... — Updated 8/18/2022

 

World's largest hornet renamed northern giant hornet

Scientists are now asking the public to refer to the world's largest hornets as "northern giant hornets," opposed to the previously dubbed names "Asian giant hornets" and "murder ho... — Updated 8/11/2022

 

Fish and Wildlife Commission rejects proposed wolf rule

Washington's wildlife commissioners have chosen not to enact a new rule that was developed with the goal of reducing the number of wolves killed under state orders due to conflicts... — Updated 8/4/2022

 
 By News Staff    Environment

Cascade Carnivore Project Reports Wolverines Have Reproduced at Mount Rainier for Third Consecutive Year

Wolverines have reproduced at Mount Rainier National Park for a third year in a row, according to an announcement last week by the Cascade Carnivore Project. The news marks another... — Updated 7/28/2022

 

Yakama Nation, Confederated Tribes launch fish habitat projects

This month, the Yakama Nation and Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation began construction for fish habitat restoration projects along the Twisp and Methow rivers. The... — Updated 7/28/2022

 

Inslee gives Asian Giant Hornets his full attention

Though there are no confirmed sightings of Asian giant hornets yet this year, scientists and entomologists from the Washington Department of Agriculture (WSDA) were ready to talk... — Updated 7/14/2022

 
 By Cal Bratt    Environment

Flood victims rebuild: Whatcom County seeks money to buy out, elevate properties

This could be the next image of flood recovery: Houses raised up from their foundations to be repositioned several feet higher, if rebuilt at all. Several homeowners in hard-hit Sumas have taken the action already, without knowing... — Updated 7/7/2022

 

Lummi Nation awarded $595,000 after 2017 salmon pen collapse

The King County Superior Court jury awarded the Lummi Nation close to $600,000 in damages Wednesday over the 2017 collapse of an Atlantic salmon net pen in Puget Sound. The... — Updated 7/7/2022

 

First Asian giant hornet nest eradicated in east Blaine now on display at the Smithsonian

A piece of Blaine is now displayed for the world to view at the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History in Washington, D.C. The first Asian giant hornet nest found and... — Updated 7/7/2022

 
 By Lisa Bryan    Environment

A New Day for Lakebay Marina

Washington State Commissioner of Public Lands Hilary Franz visited Lakebay Marina June 4 in part to celebrate the partnership to save the iconic facility and to see for herself... — Updated 7/7/2022

 

Southern resident orca pod calf identified last week

The latest addition to the Southern Resident orca J pod has been identified as a girl, according to observers from the Center for Whale Research (CWR). This orca, the first calf... — Updated 6/2/2022

 

A new invader: European green crabs pose a threat

Voracious invaders are seeking a foothold in the region's tidelands. And you've been enlisted in the battle. The enemy is the European green crab - considered one of the world's... — Updated 6/2/2022

 

Researchers look at salmon habitat above Enloe Dam

Tens of thousands of endangered salmon could access high-quality habitat in the Similkameen River watershed if Enloe Dam were removed, but any plans to demolish the dam would have... — Updated 6/2/2022

 

Holy halibut: Local charters relish bottom fish bonanza

ILWACO - Fishing roughly 20 miles off the Washington coast near a vast submarine canyon, it took the bait more than two minutes to reach the bottom in an ink-black abyss. It's in th... — Updated 5/26/2022

 

Kelp help is on the way

Below the surface of Puget Sound, disappearing kelp forests and eelgrass beds are threatening the stability of dependent species. The shrinking population is now drawing the attention of lawmakers, with a variety of approaches... — Updated 5/2/2022

 
 By Staff    Environment

Morel harvesting permits available in May

People hoping for a share of the earthy mushrooms that often pop up after a wildfire can apply for a commercial harvesting permit for morels from the Methow Valley Ranger District starting Monday (May 2). People can collect up to... — Updated 4/28/2022

 

Oil facilities, transporters to be liable for oil spill costs

The financial responsibility for an oil spill will fall on those who own the facilities and vessels that produce and transport oil, under HB 1691. The bill was passed by the Senate Thursday, March 3. It passed in the House last... — Updated 4/28/2022

 

State's gray wolf population increased in 2021

The gray wolf population in Washington topped 200 animals last year, with 33 packs in the central and eastern parts of the state at the end of 2021. The Washington Department of... — Updated 4/21/2022

 
 By Lisa Bryan    Environment

Legislature Funds Increased Derelict Boat Removal on Puget Sound

Removing derelict or abandoned boats from the waters of Puget Sound is a high priority for the Department of Natural Resources. The department's underfunded Derelict Vessel Removal... — Updated 4/21/2022

 

Where Beaches Are Born

Agates and oysters. A clear tide. Stories. I am south of Driftwood Annie's point, strolling Pitt Passage with two veteran beach walkers. The going is wonderfully slow. "It changes s... — Updated 3/17/2022

 

Transportation funding package moves to the House

A package that pays for free passes on public transportation for young people and upgrades to major bridges are all part of a 16-year transportation funding plan approved by the Washington State Senate. The Senate approved the prop... — Updated 3/16/2022

 

Democrats push $16 billion transportation plan

A $16 billion plan, crafted mainly by Democrats, to fund hybrid-electric ferries, high speed rail, highway maintenance is gaining speed in the state Legislature. “‘Move Ahead Washington’ is a promise to put Washingtonians... — Updated 3/16/2022

 

Salmon habitat rules would restrict agricultural uses

Advocates hope mandatory conservation of key habitat areas will help salmon runs recover, but opponents worry farmers will pay a price. House Bill 1838, to be known as the Lorraine Loomis Act in honor of the late Northwest Indian... — Updated 2/9/2022

 

New House bill would make oil owners financially liable for oil spills

The financial responsibility for an oil spill will fall on those who own the facilities and vessels that produce and transport oil under proposed House Bill 1691. “The goal is to minimize the permanent long-standing damage that... — Updated 2/9/2022

 

European green crab erupt in Willapa Bay

WILLAPA - Non-native European green crab are in the midst of a major expansion in Washington coastal waters, including Willapa Bay. The small crab is regarded as a potentially... — Updated 2/2/2022

 

Salmon bill adding habitat put on hold

On one issue, all in western Washington are agreed. Saving wild salmon runs is a priority. What is not clear cut, as testimony during a virtual State House of Representatives committee hearing indicates, is what sacrifices must be... — Updated 2/2/2022

 
 By Ian Haupt    Environment

B.C. government settlement extinguishes Skagit headwaters mining threat

After a nearly three-year process, the B.C. government, Imperial Metals and the Skagit Environmental Endowment Commission (SEEC) have come to an agreement to halt mining in the Skag... — Updated 1/27/2022

 
 By Staff    Environment

Colville Tribe working to relocate lynx from Canada

Several lynx have been captured in Canada and relocated to the Colville Indian Reservation in in hopes that a resilient population will be established there in an effort that uses... — Updated 12/15/2021

 

Coho have banner year

In the complex world of salmon recovery, coho are something of a success story right now. This fall, a record 25,000 coho salmon passed over Wells Dam, the highest number since... — Updated 12/9/2021

 

'Magic': Peninsula gains acclaim as psychedelic 'shroom' capital

LONG BEACH PENINSULA - There's something magical happening in the sprawling sand dunes in Pacific County. During the dreariest days of fall, an army of furtive fungal foragers... — Updated 12/2/2021

 

Research locates cold-water areas crucial for fish survival

To humans, rivers in the Methow can seem pretty frigid, even in August. But for fish in the Methow, having cold water – really cold – is a matter of life and death. Aquatic... — Updated 11/17/2021

 

Adapting to fire helped save house and avoid a 'moonscape'

As the Cedar Creek Fire approached their house in July, Peter Polson and Shannon Huffman Polson were reasonably confident they'd done their best to protect their home. Today, the... — Updated 11/3/2021

 
 By David Pan    Environment

Worried about the Big One? Consider a tsunami capsule

When the Cascadia Subduction Zone rips and shakes Edmonds and Puget Sound – and possibly unleashes a deadly tsunami – will you be ready? It's been 321 years and counting since t... — Updated 10/20/2021

 

Feds revisit wolves' endangered status

Gray wolves in the western United States, including in Eastern Washington, are a step closer to receiving endangered species protection from the federal government. The U.S. Fish... — Updated 10/6/2021

 

Meeting to reveal long-term recommendations for Lewis & Clark Trail, Palouse Falls and Lyons Ferry rescheduled

OLYMPIA–Washington State Parks has rescheduled its public meeting to share recommendations for long-term recreation and land use for three state parks in southeastern Washington.... — Updated 10/1/2021

 

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