What Biden's agenda on the environment could mean for the Pacific Northwest
SEATTLE — From reintroduction of the grizzly bear to its wild North Cascades redoubt to attacking climate change, a wide range of environmental policies could see a new direction in the Pacific Northwest under a Biden administration.For starters, government and nonprofit policy leaders say they are looking forward to a return to science as a basis for environmental policymaking. Perhaps nowhere is this more true than on climate warming.Gov. Jay Inslee has championed Washington climate and energy policies sharply at odds with a president who dismissed the threats posed by greenhouse gas emissio...
The Seattle Times
Bahamas is set to start offshore oil drilling just 150 miles off South Florida
MIAMI — Florida’s waters may be protected from offshore drilling but the Bahamas plans to start looking for oil in less than a month at an exploratory well just 150 miles off the coast of the Sunshine State.Bahamas Petroleum Company, or BPC, said in a regulatory filing last week that it contracted the UK-registered Stena IceMAX drill ship to begin work on the Perseverance No. 1 oil well in the southern Bahamas. The ship, currently anchored in Las Palmas in the Canary Islands, is scheduled to arrive in the Bahamas on or around Dec. 15, the company said.“BPC anticipates that it will take 4-5 day...
Did the US steal an island covered in bird poop from Haiti? A fortune is in dispute
MIAMI — When the eccentric rapper Kanye West made headlines last month claiming the president of Haiti had gifted him an island to which a Texan had already laid development claims, it was not the only island off Haiti’s coast in dispute.For more than 160 years, the United States and Haiti have disputed the ownership of tiny Navassa Island at the southwest entrance of the Windward Passage covered with what was once worth a king’s ransom. More than a century later, the question remains: Who owns the poop?Known as La Navase in French, the pear-shaped island is located about 35 miles west of Hait...
Commentary: Gray wolf population in peril unless Biden restores 'endangered species' protections
After decades of bitter legal feuds and culture war skirmishes over the fate of wild wolves in the United States, the Trump administration has tried to put a point at the end of the sentence. In stripping gray wolves of their Endangered Species Act protection across the country, the responsible federal agency went against both science and public opinion, and declared the species “biologically recovered.”But this delisting rule won’t stand up to scrutiny. More wolves will die as the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service squares off, once again, in court against conservationists with strong arguments t...
Family travel five: Rekindling dreams of a family vacation
With the possibility of a vaccine on the horizon, perhaps we can rekindle our dreams of a future family vacation. Here are five ideas to consider.———1. Powder HoundsFor those who relish the white stuff, travel to Colorado ski country is always a high-altitude hit. If you plan to visit a mountain resort this season, it will be important to review ski area websites, social media and other channels for tips, deals, COVID-19 information and the most up-to-date resort protocols.Know that many ski areas will be requiring prepurchase of lift tickets, ski school reservations, rentals and other activit...
Landmark Flint water crisis settlement grows to $641 million as it moves to court
DETROIT — A landmark settlement in the Flint water crisis came a step closer to reality late Tuesday, when attorneys in the class-action lawsuit presented the agreement to a federal court with an additional $41.2 million.The $641.25 million settlement, if approved by the court, would largely go to victims of the water crisis that emerged after Flint residents learned their drinking water had been contaminated with lead after a source switch to river water in 2014.“After years of hard-fought litigation and extensive negotiations, plaintiffs have reached an agreement to resolve claims against th...
The Detroit News
Up to $1,500 off: California rolls out a new incentive program for clean cars
In another example of California encouraging drivers to buy zero- or low-emissions vehicles, the California Air Resources Board and the state’s utilities have teamed up to launch a program offering a discount of up to $1,500 on the purchase or lease of new electric vehicles or plug-in hybrids.Called the California Clean Fuel Reward, the program is open to all residents of the Golden State, provided they register the vehicles with the state’s Department of Motor Vehicles.“The goal of the program is to accelerate the number of electric vehicles (EVs) on California’s roads and highways,” Sandy Be...
The San Diego Union-Tribune
Dark skies are a Minnesota outdoors treasure
MINNEAPOLIS — With each passing year, a Minnesota outdoors phenomenon on the fringe comes further into the light: the state’s dark skies.This week they’ve been feted with a virtual “Star Party” for the public through the University of Minnesota’s Bell Museum. Astrophysicists, light pollution experts, NASA ambassadors, photographers — and even public lands managers — turned the attention skyward, and for good reason.The impressive collective dovetails with increased recognition of the state’s exceptional starry skies. Much of the attention is centered Up North in Cook County, where people have ...
Star Tribune (Minneapolis)
Minnesota deer opener was poor for harvest and CWD sampling
MINNEAPOLIS — Bagging a buck on the opening weekend of the Minnesota firearms deer season proved more difficult than usual in conditions that were windy and unseasonably warm, state officials said.The important two-day harvest plunged 21% in comparison to last year’s opener and ranks well below average. In addition, hunting license sales were flat and too few hunters complied with chronic wasting disease (CWD) testing.“We did not have a great opening weekend,” said Barbara Keller, big-game program leader for the Department of Natural Resources.Keller said hunters took 59,711 whitetails Saturda...
Star Tribune (Minneapolis)
Dennis Anderson: Deer camp's solitude broken by a lost voice
MINNEAPOLIS — Dan Pidde hunts the same northern Minnesota country his grandfather first hunted in 1941.Deer aren’t overly abundant in this woodsy location north of Grand Rapids, though Pidde and his small bunch of hearty souls do manage a good buck now and then.But every year they bag their limits of tradition.“We camp in tents in the same spot for the deer opener that we do for the fishing opener,” said Pidde, 39, an engineer who lives in the Twin Cities. “We also come to the same place at the end of September to fish and camp.”Often on the deer opener ice will greet them when they launch boa...
Star Tribune (Minneapolis)