Wednesday, March 27, 2013

March 27, 2013: Mason Bees to the Rescue: Gentle Pollinators Emerge to Solve Food Crisis

When gardeners talk about bees, the buzz is usually about honeybees. After all, honeybees pollinate fruit blossoms and produce sweet amber honey. But with colony collapse disorder decimating their numbers, gardeners are turning to an unsung heroine, the native mason bee. These gentle, solitary bees are pollinating powerhouses. One mason bee can do the pollinating work of 100 honeybees. A local mason-bee entrepreneur has taken note. All he needs are bee-raising partners to help increase their population and ensure the nation’s food supply.

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Monday, March 18, 2013

March 18, 2013: Puget Sound Energy’s Green Reputation Gets A Black Eye: Sierra Club Sues Utility Over Ownership in Coal-Fired Power Plant

Why is the state’s largest electric utility with a reputation for clean energy burning coal for 20% of its power supply? The Sierra Club and Montana Environmental Information Center are asking the same thing. The two are seeking a court order requiring Puget Sound Energy and other owners to install modern pollution controls at the Colstrip Generating Facility in eastern Montana. The coal plant is one of the biggest greenhouse gas polluters in the West.

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Tuesday, March 5, 2013

March 5, 2013: A Multi-Million Dollar Military Expense Not in 'Budget Talk': Construction of a 2nd Explosives Handling Wharf at Bangor Nuclear Submarine Base 20 Miles from Seattle

One military expense that’s not discussed in budget talks is construction of a $715 million dollar explosives handling wharf at the Navy’s Bangor Nuclear Submarine Base. The base occupies five miles of shoreline on the northern edge of Hood Canal, Puget Sound’s western arm. It manages the third largest collection of nuclear warheads in the country. A National Environmental Policy Act lawsuit was filed against the Navy last summer. Legal wrangling kept the case on hold. But last week the 9th Circuit said its first responsibility was to resolve issues raised by the suit and the case would move forward. Martha Baskin has our story.

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