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Water Supplies

Good Washington snowpack raises hopes of calmer fire season

SPOKANE — Mountain snowpack came in above normal in Washington state, raising hopes the normally soggy state will not repeat last year’s drought conditions that helped fuel the worst wildfire season in its history, a federal agency said Monday.

Date: 02/08/2016 | Northwest

For the people of Flint, hope — and clean water — remains elusive

FLINT, Mich. — It kills him to say it, but Darren Bentley is thinking about leaving town. He was born here, went to Kearsley High School and rents a place near a couple of college campuses. He has never lived anywhere else.

Date: 02/06/2016 | Nation & World

Tests show few high lead readings in Ohio village’s water

SEBRING, Ohio — Regulators say lead levels in tap water have been below the federal allowable limit in 96 percent of the samples tested this past week in a northeast Ohio village.

Date: 02/06/2016 | Nation & World

Flint water crisis spurs calls to change open-record laws

LANSING, Mich. — Under fire for his administration's role in Flint's lead-tainted water emergency, Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder did something that would be legally required in most other states by releasing his government emails related to the crisis.He did not release...

Date: 01/31/2016 | Nation & World

Unlike Flint, our water is safe to drink, thanks to regulations

Everett isn’t Flint, far from it. Still, coverage of the Michigan city’s lead-in-the-water disaster reminds me of a time, more than 20 years ago, when lead testing was a hot topic...

Date: 01/27/2016 | Julie Muhlstein

Flint is what happens when government is run as a business

Jeb Bush explained Sunday why he still thinks Rick Snyder has been "a great governor for Michigan" even after the mass lead poisoning because of tainted tap water in Flint.The disgrace over Flint's water, the Republican presidential prospect told ABC's...

Date: 01/27/2016 | Opinion Columnists

Michigan governor asks Legislature for $28.5 million for Flint

LANSING, Mich. — Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder has asked the Legislature to approve an initial appropriation of $28.5 million “to address Flint emergency needs.”The administration is asking for action on the request by the end of January and expects to ask for more money in the future.

Date: 01/19/2016 | Nation & World

Sky Valley logging plans draw criticism

GOLD BAR — Three sites slated to be logged near here have drawn the ire of conservationists.Concerns about forest practices and the state selling timber to be cut by the highest bidder have spurred a new nonprofit.

Date: 01/18/2016 | Local News

Michigan governor asks for federal aid in Flint water crisis

DETROIT — The needs of Flint, Michigan, “far exceed the state’s capability,” Gov. Rick Snyder said in a request for a federal disaster declaration and millions of dollars that could pay for clean water, filters and cartridges for residents whose water system has been contaminated by lead.

Date: 01/15/2016 | Nation & World

Yakima Basin water is 25% above normal, eases drought concerns

YAKIMA — The water outlook is good for the arid Yakima Valley this summer.The federal government says December storms have helped ease drought concerns.The U.S. Bureau of Reclamation says the region’s five reservoirs and mountain snowpack are about 25 percent above normal.

Date: 01/08/2016 | Northwest

Regional water supply back to normal, utilities say

EVERETT — Recent heavy rains in October and November have refilled regional reservoirs and streams enough so that Puget Sound cities are deactivating their water shortage response plans.

Date: 11/23/2015 | Local News

After rains, region dials back water alert

EVERETT — Recent rains have improved the region’s water supply and the cities of Everett, Seattle and Tacoma are rolling back their drought advisory to its lowest level.

Date: 11/11/2015 | Local News

Tensions flare over Oregon irrigation canal ownership

BEND, Ore. — A National Park Service decision has reignited century-old tensions over the ownership of irrigation canals that bring water to central Oregon.

Date: 11/09/2015 | Northwest

Workshop covers Stillaguamish basin pollution prevention

STANWOOD — An upcoming workshop aims to teach property owners in north Snohomish County about preventing bacterial pollution in the lower Stillaguamish River basin.

Date: 11/05/2015 | Local News

Camano Island 3-year watershed improvement project a winner

CAMANO ISLAND — A three-year project to clean up the Triangle Cove watershed brought hundreds of property owners together for lessons on protecting their water supply.As grant funding for the work comes to an end, organizers say results have exceeded expectations.

Date: 10/31/2015 | Local News

‘One-day university’ explains the Sound around us

MUKILTEO — The Puget Sound rewards us with bustling ports and a plethora of marine life, swimming beaches and beautiful views.Tremendous population growth has degraded the area’s natural wonders over the past century and a half. Experts are only starting to understand how.

Date: 10/22/2015 | Local News

Wander in a wetland

Boardwalk will offer intimate view of fascinating ecosystem

Date: 10/18/2015 | Life

Court upholds $236 million verdict against Exxon Mobil

CONCORD, N.H. — New Hampshire’s highest court upheld a record $236 million judgment Friday against Exxon Mobil for its use of a gasoline additive that contaminated groundwater in the state.

Date: 10/03/2015 | Business Wire

After years of low bills, water customers will pay more

With all the questions surrounding the nation's water supplies and systems, one thing seems certain: Customers will be paying more to keep their taps flowing.Rates have been shooting up nationwide in drought-stricken states and in cities trying to upgrade their aging...

Date: 09/26/2015 | Business Wire

Sultan celebrates salmon, honors town’s namesake

SULTAN — The city is set to celebrate the return of the salmon to the Sultan River on Saturday despite the summer drought.

Date: 09/25/2015 | Local News

A lone ranger

He’s on patrol in the Spada Lake watershed

Date: 09/20/2015 | Local News

Low well levels prompt Forks to limit water use

FORKS — The small Washington city whose frequently dismal and rainy atmosphere served as the backdrop of the "Twilight" vampire romance novels is facing emergency water restrictions.

Date: 09/15/2015 | Northwest

Officials to public: Keep conserving water

EVERETT — City water customers have excelled at meeting voluntary drought cut-backs and officials are asking them to keep at it, even after recent rains.

Date: 09/12/2015 | Local News

Don’t hand over job to the EPA

The Legislature and Gov. Jay Inslee now have some motivation. And a deadline.The federal Environmental Protection Agency has notified the state that it intends to move forward with a stringent clean-water...

Date: 09/04/2015 | Editorials

Monroe seeks added revenue for upgrades to utilities

MONROE — When a city puts off upgrading its infrastructure for utilities, Janet Osborn knows all too well how people can be affected.

Date: 08/30/2015 | Local News

Legionnaires’ disease hits San Quentin prison

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Dozens of San Quentin prisoners were under observation Saturday after an inmate was diagnosed with Legionnaires' disease, prompting a weekend halt to visitors and limited drinking water supplies at the Northern California lockup.An inmate who was...

Date: 08/29/2015 | Nation & World

Water use down by 10 percent in Puget Sound region

SEATTLE — The Puget Sound region has decreased its water use by 10 percent over the past two week. The cities of Everett, Seattle and Tacoma say their cities have met their voluntary water use goals.

Date: 08/26/2015 | Northwest

Moving on for clean air, water

Having hit a wall of opposition in the Legislature this session, Democratic Gov. Jay Inslee remains committed to moving forward in some fashion with his initiatives for cleaner air and water.Inslee, who favors baseball metaphors, struck out three times with proposed...

Date: 08/13/2015 | Editorials

EPA says it triggered toxic waste spill

WASHINGTON — The head of the Environmental Protection Agency said Tuesday her department takes full responsibility for spilling 3 million gallons of mining waste that turned a southwest Colorado river an unnatural shade of orange, adding it "pains me to no end."

Date: 08/12/2015 | Nation & World

Some cities dealing with water shortages because of drought

STARTUP — People here are being asked to conserve water after one of two wells that supply the unincorporated town's drinking water ran dry. The Wallace River aquifer provides water for the wells. But it has dropped to historic lows because of the drought this summer.

Date: 08/07/2015 | Local News

In drought, Pacific Northwest cities and farms face water cuts

PORTLAND, Ore. — A deepening drought in the Pacific Northwest is forcing some cities, farms and state agencies to cut back on water use.

Date: 08/03/2015 | Northwest

State cuts water rights on tributaries of Yakima River

UNION GAP. — Extreme drought conditions have caused state ecology officials to curtail water rights on tributaries of the Yakima River that date back to 1873.

Date: 07/24/2015 | Northwest

Port Angeles voters to weigh in on fluoride in water

PORT ANGELES — Voters in Port Angeles likely will decide in November whether the city should stop adding fluoride to the city’s water system after doing so for nearly a decade.

Date: 07/23/2015 | Northwest

Vancouver officials encourage lawn watering to prevent fires

VANCOUVER, Wash. — Officials in the southwest Washington city of Vancouver are encouraging residents to water their lawns to help suppress fires.

Date: 07/22/2015 | Northwest

Bidder cries foul on PUD turbine contract

EVERETT — A hydroelectric systems company near Bellingham says the Snohomish County Public Utility District improperly skewed its bid to build two turbines, which tipped the contract to a British competitor.

Date: 07/21/2015 | Local News

It’s a good time to change bad water habits

Before you go take a shower or water the garden, consider some numbers. If it weren’t so hot, I’d say they are chilling.

Date: 07/19/2015 | Local News

Drought raises concern over return of humpies

Millions of pink salmon are bound for Washington rivers and streams this year. Biologists are worried that when they return, they might find the water too warm and shallow for spawning and cause more problems for fish already struggling

Date: 07/19/2015 | Local News

Due to drought, Oregon curtails fishing for some species

PORTLAND, Ore. — Oregon officials have prohibited fishing or curtailed fishing hours on most rivers in the state to avoid additional stress on wild fish suffering from drought-related high water temperatures and low stream flows.

Date: 07/16/2015 | Northwest

Washington ranchers sue over rule giving feds authority on state water

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Ranchers in New Mexico, California and Washington state are challenging a new Obama administration rule giving federal agencies authority to protect some streams and wetlands.

Date: 07/16/2015 | Northwest

$16 million available to help in Washington drought relief

OLYMPIA — Washington State officials say drought relief money is available to help address hardships from water shortages.

Date: 07/13/2015 | Northwest

New drought challenge: Protecting fish from warm, shallow water

Fishery managers are taking unprecedented steps to protect fish from potentially lethal conditions caused by the drought this summer. Fishing is restricted in some areas and hatcheries are having to make changes.The state Department of Fish and...

Date: 07/10/2015 | Local News

Tap water is better if you don't think before you drink

Those with discerning palates may have recently noticed a metallic taste – an eau de aluminum, if you will – in the local water supply. No reason to be alarmed,

Date: 07/10/2015 | Web Monkey

Make parks fund permanent

If Congress were seeking a vote on a valuable program that would allow it to pat itself on the back and celebrate its ability to work in a bipartisan fashion, it could do no better than renewal of the Land and Water Conservation Fund.

Date: 07/07/2015 | Editorials

Anacortes makes water available to Skagit farmers

ANACORTES — The city of Anacortes is making water available to seed farmers in the Skagit Valley who ran low on water because of this year’s drought.

Date: 07/06/2015 | Northwest

Chemical safety bill may have good shot

Most Americans believe the chemicals in products they buy in the supermarket have been tested for safety. But the scandalous truth is our main chemical safety law is so badly broken that no one has the authority to ensure the safety of chemicals used in everything from cleaning products...

Date: 07/05/2015 | Commentary

Update to water quality rules could affect county's farmers

OLYMPIA — State officials are rewriting water quality rules and the update could change how Snohomish County farmers use manure lagoons.The Department of Ecology is updating permits it issues for Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations. Those are farms that discharge...

Date: 07/04/2015 | Local News

Washington lawmakers approve drought relief

OLYMPIA — State lawmakers have approved $16 million in emergency drought relief over two years to help farmers and others struggling with water shortages.

Date: 07/02/2015 | Northwest

State’s best chance at own water rule

Even with two special sessions and counting, there were issues that the Legislature didn't get to this year. But with lawmakers' likely failure to pass legislation that would have helped the state Department of Ecology develop and enforce water quality rules, the state may now be...

Date: 07/02/2015 | Editorials

Sen. Cantwell’s bill aims to address water issues in Yakima

YAKIMA — U.S. Senator Maria Cantwell has introduced legislation aimed at ensuring a reliable supply of water for farmers, municipalities, fish, tribes and others in the Yakima River Basin.

Date: 07/01/2015 | Northwest

Arlington water conservation based on ‘wise use’

ARLINGTON — Saving water has been on people’s minds around here for the past 20 years.

Date: 06/27/2015 | Local News

Water limits as river flows drop in Eastern Washington

Associated PressWENATCHEE — Washington state has told several hundred irrigators in north-central and eastern Washington to stop irrigating because river flows have dropped too low.

Date: 06/26/2015 | Northwest

California slashes water for farmers

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — As California grapples with a relentless drought, state regulators Friday ordered farmers and others who hold some of the strongest water rights in the state to stop all pumping from three major waterways in one of country's prime farm regions.The...

Date: 06/13/2015 | Nation & World

Everett sewer program extended, but confusion remains about liability

EVERETT — The city of Everett is extending its now passed deadline for some residents to install backwater valves to protect their property from sewer backups in the event of a major storm.The new deadline is Sept. 1.

Date: 06/08/2015 | Local News

Watering and deadheading: June's to-do list

Here is this month's dreaded to-do list. Things might not be as bad as in California, but our lack of rain is affecting our gardens. We'll start there:Watering. If ever there was a year to apply mulch to our soils this would be it. The Everett area rainfall...

Date: 06/04/2015 | Home and Garden

Washington Senate approves drought relief money, awaits House action

OLYMPIA — The state Senate has approved $18 million in emergency drought relief as lawmakers wrapped up its first special session Thursday.

Date: 05/29/2015 | Northwest

Clear rules for cleaner waters

The Obama administration's issuance this week of the Clean Water Rule to restore safeguards under the 1972 Clean Water Act will help keep our waters clean — from stream to sea and...

Date: 05/29/2015 | Editorials

Nestle bottled-water plan draws fight in drought-stricken Oregon

SAN FRANCISCO — Nestle’s plan to bottle Oregon’s spring water is stoking a fight with lawmakers and environmental activists who say a corporation shouldn’t be allowed to profit from a natural resource as drought spreads across the state.

Date: 05/26/2015 | Northwest

How to log and protect owl habitat

The city of Everett, which owns 3,729 acres at its reservoir at Chaplain Lake, north of Sultan, has proposed a novel approach to land management that would set aside about a third of the property for wildlife habitat for several decades while allowing the city to continue a modest...

Date: 05/12/2015 | Editorials

Farmers sue government over Columbia River water contract

UMATILLA, Ore. — A group of agricultural operators who farm near the Columbia River have filed suit against the federal government over an irrigation water contract.

Date: 05/02/2015 | Northwest

Longview man forgiven $5,000 water bill, blames illegal pipes

LONGVIEW — The city of Longview has forgiven a man’s $5,000 water bill after determining that someone had tapped into his pipes.

Date: 04/27/2015 | Northwest

Sorry, captain

Editorial: Shatner and California can't have our water

Date: 04/23/2015 | Editorials

Monroe pond may dry up

Highway 522 project threatens salmon, animal habitat

Date: 04/21/2015 | Local News

Tahuya man sentenced to 30 days for redirecting river

SHELTON — A Tahuya man was sentenced to 30 days in jail and ordered to pay more than $8,000 in fines for redirecting the Tahuya River at his property.

Date: 04/18/2015 | Northwest

When septic systems go bad, there’s help for homeowners

Snohomish County has launched a new initiative to replace and repair aging septic systems by providing homeowners with convenient financing options.The county launched its Savvy Septic program earlier this...

Date: 04/16/2015 | Local News

Lawmakers watering down water quality

Amendments by the state House and Senate to water quality legislation proposed by Gov. Jay Inslee have limited its scope and its ability to take timely action and could also now invite enforcement action by the federal Environmental Protection Agency.The gutting of the...

Date: 04/14/2015 | Editorials

Snow that replenishes Washington reservoirs sets record low

SPOKANE — Snow that replenishes Washington’s reservoirs set a record low for April, setting the stage for reduced water supplies and perhaps more devastating wildfires this year.

Date: 04/08/2015 | Northwest

Some Yakima River basin irrigators to receive 60% of normal water

SPOKANE — The water supply forecast for the Yakima River basin got worse in March.The U.S. Bureau of Reclamation announced Monday that holders of junior water rights will likely get just 60 percent of their normal water.

Date: 04/06/2015 | Northwest

Snow pack? What snow pack?

Snow depth measured at zero, but rainfall makes up for it

Date: 03/28/2015 | Local News

Drought ravages once-fertile fields of California

MENDOTA, Calif. — In this region that calls itself "The Cantaloupe Center of the World," vast fields that once annually yielded millions of melons lie fallow. And, for some farmers, planting tomatoes and other traditional row crops may now constitute acts of...

Date: 03/14/2015 | Nation & World

Governor declares drought emergency in some parts of state

SEATTLE — Gov. Jay Inslee on Friday declared a drought emergency for three regions in Washington state, clearing the way for state officials to provide money and other relief to those experiencing drought hardships.

Date: 03/13/2015 | Northwest

Bill tied to fish-consumption water rule clears House

OLYMPIA — Legislation tied to the state’s efforts to update water quality standards is headed to the Senate after winning approval in the House.Gov. Jay Inslee had requested the legislation aimed at tackling toxic pollution at its source.

Date: 03/13/2015 | Northwest

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