Monday, October 29, 2007

News Digest for October 29, 2007

All the links in today’s news digest lead to current stories. Please note that some media organizations update their web sites regularly, which may result in broken links in the future.


Imbricate • \IM-brih-kut \ • adjective – Lying lapped over each other in regular order

Day after day Donatello stared, unfocused yet watchful at the shadowy shapes darting past the viewing windows at the mighty dam’s fish ladder. His fingers nervously clicked the counter in his hand. It wasn’t until years later that he actually wrestled with a fish in his hands that he marveled at the intricate beauty of nature: the subtle hues and the imbricate scales that ran down the sides of the large, flopping salmon.


Experts: 'La Nina' to bring wetter NW weather (The Associated Press)

Temperatures on the rise over the years in South Sound – Average temperatures in South Sound have grown slightly warmer in the past century. (The Olympian)


Need for cash spurs Puget Energy deal – With plans to spend billions on new power plants and equipment over the coming years, Puget Energy decided it needed a more stable — and more patient — source of new cash than the public stock and debt markets. (Seattle Times – Don’t miss the pie chart that shows most electricity customers in Washington State are served by public utilities!)

Recovery ongoing for storm victims – Thomas Thomas, 52, shows all the signs of what could be called PTSD: Post Traumatic Storm Disorder. (The Olympian)

What you can do to protect yourself – Lessons learned in South Sound. Windstorms. Power outages. Flooding. Earthquakes. These are some of the emergencies that are part of life in the Northwest all year. (The Olympian – Don’t try this at home: If a line falls on your car, stay in the vehicle…To exit, open the door, but do not step out. Jump, without touching any of the metal portions of the car's exterior, to safe ground and get away.)

Programs assist poor with winter heating bill – The Lower Columbia Community Action Program (CAP) is gearing up its energy assistance programs as the weather turns colder. (The Daily News, Longview)

Turning from coal means more demand for nuclear and alternative energy sources (Minnesota Public Radio)

Texas – Generators producing dispute, not electricity. Word on the river is that both generators at Morris Sheppard Dam are down and are not being fixed because of a dispute between Brazos River Authority and the electricity purchaser Brazos Electric Cooperative Inc. (Mineral Wells Index)

South Carolina – Proposed coal-fired plant assailed: Conservation groups claim studies show state could meet energy needs through renewable energy sources and efficiency programs -- to offset the need for the plant (Knight Ridder Tribune Business News via Power Marketers Online)

Electric plan to lock in northern Ohio's higher rates: Cost you're paying for power now could be 'floor’ for future rates – A new plan to set future electric rates in the state, keeping northern Ohio's high rates, was unveiled yesterday in the Ohio Senate. (Knight Ridder Tribune Business News via Power Marketers Online)

The Invisible Commodity – Electricity is the invisible commodity. But it's now in the limelight. Energy infrastructure has been labeled inadequate and ill-prepared to enable American businesses to compete in a global economy. (Power Marketers Industry Publications)


Tri-City Herald Editorial – Working weirs: Phase three of a Snake River success story should slip into action this spring. It's the third huge weir to be installed on the Snake River to help juvenile salmon pass the dams.

Salmon fishing on Oregon's famed Rogue River nosedives (KOMO-TV, Seattle)

Restoration work on N. Idaho spawning grounds begins – Workers in northern Idaho have started vacuuming silt off the bottom of Lake Pend Oreille so that kokanee, a prized sport fish that brings in millions of dollars to the area, will have a place to spawn. (The Associated Press, via the Olympian)

Oregon – After fish kill, rave reviews for chub-free Diamond Lake (The Associated Press)

San Francisco Chronicle Opinion – The public supports ocean access, not closures to sport fishing.

Environmental agency ponders request to head Alcoa cleanup – Federal authorities are continuing to weigh whether to take over a long-delayed cleanup of a highly contaminated stretch of Columbia River shoreline. (The Columbian)

Georgia – Georgia paying for lack of water planning. Lawmakers scrambling to cope with drought after years of lax zoning laws, pro-growth policies led to widespread urban sprawl (Contra Costa Times)

Georgia/Alabama’s water fight shifting to D.C. (The Dothan Eagle)


Mammoth wind farm slated for South Dakota – Plans for the world's largest wind farm, proposed to be built in South Dakota, have become more grandiose. (Associated Press, via the Columbian)

Wind farms generate bird worries – As more turbines churn in the gorge, wildlife biologists fear the blades will threaten raptor numbers (The Oregonian)

News Release – As Support for Cape Wind Erodes, Clean Power Now Rolls Out Another Flawed Poll. Less than one week after the Cape Cod Commission dealt a critical setback to the controversial Cape Wind project, the project's grassroots lobby group Clean Power Now is preparing to roll out yet another survey showing Cape Cod support for a project that has lagged in every independent survey. (PRNewswire-USNewswire)

For a Devotee of Solar Energy, a Shot at Earning Respect – The sun was shining for a change, which was good news for Richard Thompson, known throughout these parts as Solar Richard. (NY Times)

City wins green power award – Bellingham has again been recognized as a national leader in green power, receiving a Green Power Partner of the Year award from the Environmental Protection Agency.

Solar racers gain speed Down Under (CNET News)

DTE signs renewable power contract: Manure is used in electricity deal (Knight Ridder Tribune Business News via Power Marketers Online)

Creating power out of thin air – Imagine a material that can suck in heat from the environment and power a notebook. A New Jersey company is aiming to do just that. (CNET News)

Who's Fueling Whom? Why the biofuels movement could run out of gas (Smithsonian Magazine)


News Release – Fall Is Ideal Time to Plant Trees – Fall's cool temperatures are here, marking the best time for homeowners to plant trees that will flourish in the spring. (Oncor)


Report takes aim at smog-causing speed bumps – Speed bumps -- a Band-Aid solution for bad street planning -- not only fuel drivers' tempers and create noise pollution, they add greenhouse gases to the air we breathe, says a new federal housing agency report. (The Vancouver Sun)


FCC plan could be cable TV boon for renters – Exclusive contracts for apartments, condos would end (Seattle Post-Intelligencer)

Illinois – Plan for wireless Internet at rest stops halted again. IDOT cites lack of proposals from vendors as reason (State Journal Record)

San Francisco Chronicle Opinion – Bye-bye Wi-Fi. I never thought I'd see the day when San Francisco's volatile Supervisor Chris Daly comes across as the voice of reason, while Mayor Gavin Newsom is stuck in a rut of two years of being completely in the wrong.

Louisiana – Cities get wired. Areas with regional or citywide wireless, hot spots, municipal-use systems and those pondering one of the above have more than tripled in the past two years. (The Shreveport Times)

Confusion looks likely in digital TV conversion (The News Tribune, Tacoma)


Step away from the clock! Don't touch your clocks today. It's not time for daylight-saving time to end ... yet. (Seattle Times)

(A cautionary public affairs tale) FEMA leader apologizes for staged briefing (Seattle Times)

Telltale e-mails tracked down to ex-official – The e-mails came in a steady trickle, more than 20 over almost 13 months, often from a phantom sender who claimed to be a local builder fed up with impropriety in the Clark County's building division. (The Columbian)

The Olympian Editorial – KGY deserves a long-term lease. Port of Olympia commissioners must find a way to accommodate KGY radio when its lease expires at the end of 2009.

Wenatchee – Pay raise for mayor: 36 percent. Councilman questions timing of pay increases for elected city officials (Wenatchee World)

Hops scarce; glass, fuel costs up Crisis brews for beer makers (News Tribune, Tacoma)

UFO Reporting Center operates out of former missile site – To find the new home of The National UFO Reporting Center, you must go several yards underground at a former nuclear missile site in Eastern Washington. (Associated Press, via the Seattle Post-Intelligencer)

Shelton topples Capital – Playoffs against Bellevue next (The Olympian)


He's not undead, just unsober...Passengers on a German train mistook a Halloween reveler dressed up as a gore-covered zombie for a murder victim and called the police.

Burglars-in-a-box busted after robberies (technically, these were burglaries NOT robberies)

Cell Phone GPS Leads To Suspect In Tree – Ex-Girlfriend Gives Police Suspect's Phone Number

Aliens caused Sicily fires, say officials – Aliens were responsible for a series of unexplained fires in fridges, TV’s and mobile phones in an Italian village, according to an Italian government report.

Speedometer can surprise when there's no gridlock – Patrol says driver was clocked at 122 mph on I-5