Northwest farmers urge Trump administration to sidestep salmon protection rules – AP

Ah yes, some of the folks in Eastern Washington and Idaho, people who’s livelihood was created by the tax payer funded dam projects that irrigated the dry eastern side of our state are back wanting the Feds to kill off the remaining runs of salmon for their short term benefits. These people, who have continued to complain for decades about the intrusion of the very government that created the dams and their farms, now wants it’s help again. This time to overrule the laws that protect our remaining runs of salmon. One of the big supporters of these folks has been Rush Limbaugh, among other radical right wing folks. You can bet your bottom dollar that if this committee ever comes to fruition, there will be not a single environmental representative on it.

A group that represents farmers is calling the costs of saving imperiled salmon in the largest river system in the Pacific Northwest unsustainable and is turning to the Trump administration to sidestep endangered species laws. The Columbia-Snake River Irrigators Association wants the government to convene a Cabinet-level committee with the power to allow exemptions to the Endangered Species Act. Known as the “God squad” because its decisions can lead to extinctions of threatened wildlife, it has only gathered three times — the last 25 years ago during a controversy over spotted owl habitat in the Northwest. Keith Ridler reports. (Associated Press)

http://www.seattletimes.com/business/trump-administration-urged-to-avoid-salmon-protection-rules/

Environmental Penalties Down Under President Trump – NPR

This should come as a surprise to no one. This president and his inept band of anti-science vandals, are hell-bent on reversing decades of protection of our air, water and earth. But we need to document the damage they are causing by not enforcing the laws of both Republican and Democratic legacy.

Since President Trump took office in January, enforcement of environmental laws has dropped dramatically, compared with past administrations. A study released by the Environmental Integrity Project finds that $12 million in civil penalties have been collected from violators in 26 cases between January and the end of July….  That’s significantly less than the number of cases prosecuted and the penalties collected under the same six month period by the Obama, Bush and Clinton administrations. Greg Allen reports. (NPR)

http://www.opb.org/news/article/npr-environmental-penalties-down-under-president-trump/

Climate Activists in Pacific Northwest Fight Construction of World’s Largest Methanol Refinery – Green Currents

Highly controversial proposal at the mouth of one of most important ecological river deltas.

Climate activists in the Pacific Northwest have rallied against a tsunami of fossil export proposals over the last five years:  coal, oil and the latest, petrochemical projects. The fight against a proposal to build the world’s largest methanol refinery on the banks of the Columbia River using fracked gas may be their biggest fight to date. Martha Baskin reports. (Green Currents)

http://www.truth-out.org/news/item/40900-climate-activists-in-pacific-northwest-fight-construction-of-world-s-largest-methanol-refinery

So… after Paris, now what?

I doubt that anyone reading this hasn’t heard that the President of the 2nd largest polluting nation in the world has decided to walk away from a voluntary agreement to reduce greenhouse gases in the face of irrefutable proof that the earth is heading towards disaster within the lifetime of people alive now. He did this by saying he “supports the environment”, which one? And exactly how?

If this was an asteroid heading towards Earth, I doubt he would be equivocating. And if 99 engineers told him that if he drove his car across a certain bridge that it would fall down, would he pile his kids and wife into his limo and head off across? As Sally Field as “momma” told Forest Gump so clearly, “Stupid is as stupid does.”

So now, we go on without the federal government’s support. We can do that, we must do it and we will do it. Real leaders, not the fake ones in the White House and the EPA, have stood up and declared they will. Our Governor Jay Inslee, Oregon and California’s governors, Bloomberg in NYC, ex-Governor of California Arnold Schwartznegger and many many others are committing to simply go around and through the Federal Government.

The President has abrogated his primary role, which is to protect the people of the United States from harm and protect the Constitution. It will be meaningless to protect the constitution if the planet dies. His scientific brain trust and numerous business leaders advised him not to pull out of the agreement. Our allies and religious leaders did too.Add to this, his office of Emergency Management, during the beginning of this hurricane season, still is without a leader. .Mr Trump spends more time tweeting  at 6 AM  than actually doing something about filling key roles in his administration. His lack of leadership and his filling his closest ranks with traitors to this country, people who lack the moral compass to not fraternize with the enemy behind the backs of our own intelligence community is unprecedented. In making the announcement the other day, he had he nerve to say he “represented Pittsburg” when he lost Pittsburg to Hillary Clinton by almost 80 to 20%. He is a habitual liar and a small percentage of the American people believe him all the time.

So stay calm and carry on. This too will pass. And let’s find a leader for 2020 that can win in Ohio, Michigan and Wisconsin before the Republicans realize that Trump is more of a liability than an asset and impeach him. In the meantime there is a lot of work to do.

More concerns raised about flame retardants – NY Times

The New York Times has a story that is quite disturbing, about new concerns with flame retardants, found in almost every home and office these days. It now looks like they could be the root cause of a cat wasting disease that has been rampant throughout the U.S. and the developed world. Our State Senator Kevin van de Wege has been a leader in trying to get these chemicals permanently banned in our state and with this article, perhaps he can finally convince remaining holdouts to get these chemicals banned from our homes.  PBDEs are found throughout Puget Sound waters. They likely are found in our fish. And they are found in our homes. Almost every couch seat cushion contains them. As does our electronics. You can help by letting Senator Van de Wege know you want to see him push to get this finalized next legislative session.

How much money could Trump take from science in WA? – KUOW

And this is only some of it.  The Trump recession that is coming as he dismantles science funding will affect us a lot here in the Puget Sound area. Behind the dollars are high paying white and blue collar jobs at these places.

A quick glance around Lake Union and you can tell there’s a lot of science happening in our state. With the Trump administration threatening cuts to research funding, we examined how much money this could mean for Washington state.

First of all, it’s difficult to lasso all the federal dollars going to science. So we zeroed in on two big agencies to get an overview: the National Science Foundation and the National Institutes of Health, looking at their reports for the 2016 fiscal year.

Dear Scott Pruitt, you’re making a mockery of the EPA – Crosscut & KING 5

A strong letter to the  new EPA leader by a long time senior staffer, who just resigned.

However, I, and many staff, firmly believe the policies this Administration is advancing are contrary to what the majority of the American people, who pay our salaries, want EPA to accomplish, which are to ensure the air their children breath is safe; the land they live, play, and hunt on to be free of toxic chemicals; and the water they drink, the lakes they swim in, and the rivers they fish in to be clean.

Read the whole short piece at Crosscut. By the way, while you are there, donate a small bit to help continue their efforts. They run this great news source on a shoestring.

http://crosscut.com/2017/04/epa-worker-seattle-letter-to-scott-pruitt/

 

 

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