The Washington Department of Ecology (Ecology) has formally adopted changes to two state rules that will enhance protection of the state’s environment, economy and cultural resources from the impacts of a potential major spill. Ecology has calculated that a major spill could cost Washington’s economy $10.8 billion and adversely affect 165,000 jobs due to disruptions to maritime shipping and public port activities, recreation and tourism, and injuries to state fish, shellfish and wildlife. Read more about these changes.
It was three, maybe four o’clock in the morning when he first saw them. Grad student Jeff Bowman was on the deck of a ship; he and a University of Washington biology team were on their way back from the North Pole. It was cold outside, the temperature had just dropped, and as the dawn broke, he could see a few, then more, then even more of these little flowery things, growing on the frozen sea. Read more about what Jeff saw and the phenomenon that causes it.
David Montgomery, a UW geologist, is the author of a new book that explores the long history of religious thinking on matters of geological discovery, particularly flood stories such as the biblical account of Noah’s ark. Read more about his book here.
Check out this video on the removal of the Elwha River dams and the ecosystem restoration to follow. Learn about what scientists are doing to better understand how the river functions now and how it will change in the future. You can watch the nine-minute video here!
After years of legal wrangling, the Colville Tribe will face Teck Resources, one of the river’s major polluters, in federal court in September. The trial is a bid to hold the Canadian company responsible for dumping pollution into the upper Columbia River. Read more about this here.
Robert J. Naiman, a University of Washington professor known internationally for his work on freshwater ecology and ways to balance environmental and societal considerations, has received the highest award given by the Ecological Society of America, the world’s largest society of professional ecologists. Read more about this award here.
Increased storage capacity across the Yakima River watershed is one feature of the proposed Yakima River Basin Integrated Water Resource Management Plan, a feature which may increase the resilience of communities relying on irrigation for crop production, as well as that of fish populations. Climate Impacts Group is mentioned; read more here.