Environment and Planning

Environment and Planning

U.S. Department of Energy

Washington state officials have been waiting to see how the U.S. Department of Energy plans to deal with an unstable tunnel filled with radioactive waste at the Hanford nuclear site.

Coming Soon To Eastern Washington: Tree-Free Paper Pulp

Jul 28, 2017
ivabalk / Pixabay - tinyurl.com/y7s4ar7c

A company in eastern Washington is developing a new way to make paper pulp without trees. The mill will instead use a source abundant to the area: straw.

Sam Beebe / Flickr - tinyurl.com/ycbokzax

If Northwest fish were stand-up comics, the salmon would be the headliner. And the fish that gets “no respect” would be the lamprey, an eel-like creature that has been plying the Northwest’s rivers for 400 million years. 

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Normally by late June, wasps are a common nuisance at summer barbecues. But this year, entomologists have noticed a drop-off in Washington state and wasp populations are lower than usual.

Brumund-Smith / National Park Service

Olympic National Park is inching ahead on a plan to reduce or eliminate its population of non-native mountain goats. A draft plan released Monday for public comment includes options to relocate or kill the animals.

Anna King / Northwest News Network

The U.S. Department of Energy rolled out several options at a public meeting Thursday night to stabilize what’s known as Tunnel 2 at the Hanford nuclear reservation in southeast Washington. Stabilizing the tunnel became a priority after nearby Tunnel 1 was found partially collapsed this spring.

Tunnel 2 is filled with highly-radioactive equipment leftover from a plutonium plant, and the feds say it's also in danger of collapse.

At the meeting, they presented a raft of ideas to stabilize it:

Washington Dept. of Fish and Wildlife

Washington state’s department of Fish and Wildlife will kill members of a wolf pack that is causing problems for livestock in Stevens County.



Williamborg / Wikimedia - tinyurl.com/y9geafwv

Spokane is now the latest northwest city to recognize climate change as human-caused and to commit to limiting greenhouse gas emissions.

The Spokane City Council passed its Sustainability Action Plan Monday night by a vote of six to one. The plan includes a goal set in 2009 to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 30 percent by 2030.

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U.S. Secretary of the Interior Ryane Zinke announced Thursday that the Hanford Reach National Monument in Washington and Craters of the Moon National Monument in Idaho won’t lose their federal designation.

Joan Lopez / ECHO

If you think trying to carry on a conversation in a noisy restaurant or bar is difficult, imagine how whales in the noisy waters of the Salish Sea feel.

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