Prior to European settlement of North America, the Virginia opossum was found only in Central America and the southeastern United States. During the 1900s, its range expanded northward and westward. Virginia opossums, also known as “possums,” first arrived in Washington in the early 1900s as pets and novelties. Some of these animals, or their offspring, later escaped from captivity or were intentionally released. With few natural predators, the absence of hunting, and an abundance of food and shelter, opossums have adapted well to living close to people in urban and suburban environments. Except for higher elevations, opossums now occupy most human-occupied habitats in western Washington. (Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife)
Wash. Budget Has Pros And Cons For Environmental Policies
Washingtonians are parsing the state budget passed last week by a divided legislature. It adds $1.8 billion for basic education over the next two years. A big chunk of that comes from the closure of a so-called “extractive fuel” loophole, which is one of several new policies that many environmentally progressive groups like. Eric de Place, an energy and climate policy analyst at the Seattle-based Sightline Institute, says from his perspective, the new state budget is mostly good news. Bellamy Pailthorp reports. (KNKX)
Trump admin wants to cut spending on lands, tribes. Critics say it will backfire
The agency that manages Mount Rainier, North Cascades and Olympic national parks will see big budget cuts, if the Trump administration has its way. The U.S. Department of the Interior is the nation’s largest manager of public lands, overseeing about a fifth of America. Here in Washington state, it manages 24 national wildlife refuges and two national monuments in addition to the three major national parks. It also handles federal relations with Native Americans and regulates energy production on land and at sea. John Ryan reports. (KUOW)
Oregon Celebrates As Beach Bill Turns 50
Imagine resorts carved into the coastline, fences blocking access to the beaches, and “no trespassing” signs posted on trails to the ocean. We’ve never had to in Oregon because we have free unrestricted public access to all the state’s beaches. Landmark legislation passed in 1967, known as the Beach Bill, guarantees us access that only Hawaii can match. Our 362-mile coastline is a recreational playground, with hiking, camping, fishing and biking, surfing and beachcombing opportunities galore. It is one big viewing platform, with enchanting beaches, seductive headlands and glorious vistas at every single turn. Capi Lynn reports. (Statesman Journal)
Phillips 66 appeals $37,800 state fine for acid leak at its refinery near Ferndale
Phillips 66 is appealing its $37,800 fine for a February acid leak at its refinery that sent seven workers to the hospital. The company was fined $6,300 each for six violations that the Washington State Department of Labor & Industries deemed as “serious.” Phillips 66 appealed the fine on June 23, as well as L&I’s “serious” designations. A hearings officer will decide the matter by Aug. 28, according to L&I spokeswoman Elaine Fischer. Kie Relyea reports. (Bellingham Herald)
Puffin cruises to circle Protection Island
The Port Townsend Marine Science Center is bringing back its annual Puffin Cruises beginning Saturday. The cruises will run every Saturday night through Aug. 12. Cruises leave from Point Hudson Marina at 6 p.m. for a three-hour tour around the Protection Island National Wildlife Refuge, which is at the mouth of Discovery Bay. Cydney McFarland reports. (Peninsula Daily News)
Now, your weekend tug weather--
West Entrance U.S. Waters Strait Of Juan De Fuca- 220 AM PDT Fri Jul 7 2017
TODAY W wind 5 to 15 kt becoming 10 to 20 kt in the afternoon. Wind waves 1 to 3 ft. W swell 3 ft at 7 seconds.
TONIGHT W wind 10 to 20 kt. Wind waves 1 to 3 ft. SW swell 2 ft at 8 seconds.
SAT W wind to 10 kt becoming 5 to 15 kt in the afternoon. Wind waves 1 ft building to 1 to 3 ft. SW swell 2 ft at 10 seconds.
SAT NIGHT W wind 10 to 20 kt easing to 10 kt after midnight. Wind waves 1 to 3 ft. SW swell 2 ft at 13 seconds.
SUN Light wind becoming W to 10 kt in the afternoon. Wind waves 1 ft or less building to 1 to 3 ft. SW swell 2 ft at 15 seconds.
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