Top Northwest Sustainability Headlines

July 25, 2014

Safeco Field oil train_4

Oil train outside Safeco Field_4 by Ben Nakamura (Used with permission.)

1. Oil train derailment intensifies worry

Concerns about the impacts of increased oil-vessel and train traffic were stoked by Thursday morning’s derailment of a crude oil train under Seattle’s Magnolia Bridge.

The Seattle Times | Oil trains

2. Sightline resources on oil trains

In light of Thursday’s derailment in Seattle, here are some important resources on oil trains.

Sightline | Oil trains

3. Coal Exports: Unfair Market Value

Sightline is releasing a new report on the US Bureau of Land Management’s coal leasing programs: Unfair Market Value: By Ignoring Exports, BLM Underprices Federal Coal.

Sightline | Coal exports

4. Premier says Victoria will clean up, but when?

It has been nearly a decade since then-Premier Gordon Campbell described Victoria’s sewage discharges as “an embarrassment to the people of British Columbia” and promised that the capital would clean up its act. Now, British Columbia Premier Christy Clark promised members of Washington’s congressional delegation that sewage treatment “will happen.” She didn’t say when.

The Seattle Post-Intelligencer | Water pollution

5. Pedal at 11 mph to avoid pollution

With a homebuilt $300 pollution monitor strapped to his bicycle and seven years of Portland State University education in his brain, Alex Bigazzi has been leading a deep exploration into your lungs. Here are some of the interesting things he’s found.

Bike Portland | Bicycling

6. Seattle considers compost cops

The city of Seattle might start fining residents who put food waste in the garbage instead of the compost bin — the latest idea to push for better recycling rates.

EarthFix | Recycling

7. NW wildfires: Fixing broken forests

The Northwest is ablaze. Both Washington and Oregon are in official states of emergency as dozens of fires burn on forests and rangelands. Welcome to the hot, flammable future, America. We’ve been setting ourselves up for these fires for a long, long time.

Grist | Wildfires

8. OR-7 family photos confirm 3 pups

Fresh images show two gray pups in about the same area where last month John Stephenson, a wolf coordinator for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, captured pictures of a black pup.

The Oregonian | Wolves

9. Once-common marine birds disappearing

From white-winged scoters and surf scoters to long-tailed ducks, murres, loons and some seagulls, the number of everyday marine birds on Washington’s coast has plummeted dramatically in recent decades.

The Seattle Times | Fish and wildlife

10. Why WA should adopt a BC-style carbon tax

The basic idea behind the BC approach is to phase in a carbon tax on fossil fuels and pair it with broad-based tax reductions that benefit most households and businesses

Sightline | Carbon Tax

More News from July 25, 2014

Another monorail vote?

Anti-tunnel activist and civic gadfly Elizabeth Campbell files an initiative that would create a new monorail authority in Seattle.

Seattle Met | Transit

Coal trains need spendy traffic improvements

Communities throughout the Puget Sound region would need overpasses and underpasses costing $50 million to $200 million each to prevent traffic from being stopped by a proposed 18 daily coal trains, a government report says.

The Seattle Times | Transportation

Do neighborhood greenways increase cycling?

If you were wondering whether Seattle’s investments in neighborhood greenways are effective, here’s your answer: A resounding yes.

Seattle Bike Blog | Bicycling

Crowd-sourcing a Northern Gateway fight

British Columbia First Nations and environmental groups are launching a fundraising campaign for the coming legal battle against the Northern Gateway pipeline.

Toronto Globe and Mail | Pipelines

Time to let some Columbia dams tumble?

The federal government doesn’t want to hear about wrecking dams. Idaho doesn’t either.

Crosscut | Salmon

Bellevue site chosen for light-rail yard

The Sound Transit Board voted to recommend building a controversial 25-acre rail yard in Bellevue across the street from the massive Spring District real estate development in the Bel-Red corridor.

Puget Sound Business Journal | Land Use

Tacoma casino cancels Ted Nugent

The Emerald Queen Casino has pulled the plug on Ted Nugent concerts scheduled for Aug. 2 and 3, citing what it calls the rock musician’s history of racist remarks as well as strong pressure from the public.

The Tacoma News Tribune | Racism

Donors pay to test for Fukushima radiation

Radiation experts don’t believe there is cause for alarm on our shores, but some coastal residents are stepping forward to pay for seawater testing just to be sure.

EarthFix | Water pollution