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Stories tagged: Department of Ecology


Grant goes for new chipper in Rockford

The city of Rockford has received an $11,500 grant from the Department of Ecology to purchase a new chipper. The grant was part of four totaling $265,000 to local governments …


Firm will analyze effect on state of oil trains, marine shipments

The Washington Department of Ecology has awarded a $250,000 contract to a New York firm to analyze how oil trains and marine oil shipments affect the state.


Unions oppose tough state water quality standards

OLYMPIA – Washington state is rushing toward water quality standards that will be too strict and cost jobs without being backed up by good science, leaders of unions with workers …


Instream flow rule proposed for Spokane River’s main stem

Keeping enough water in the Spokane River at critical times for fish and recreation is the focus of the state’s new effort to adopt instream flows for the river. Instream …


State evaluating cleanup options for former cement plant in Valley

The Department of Ecology is now considering options to clean up the site of a former cement manufacturing plant near the shore of the Spokane River that is still contaminated …


State agency hopes to finance oil spill risk-reduction program

Oil trains traveling through the Inland Northwest cross Lake Pend Oreille and pass over the Spokane Valley-Rathdrum Prairie Aquifer. The rail route also follows portions of the Spokane River, Hangman …


Oil terminal proposal would increase train traffic through Spokane

Last year, a train carrying crude oil from North Dakota chugged across Eastern Washington en route to a Puget Sound refinery. The oil train was the first for the region, …


Fish consumption rate keys pollution laws

OLYMPIA – Legislators grappled Thursday with a seemingly small question that has a big impact on Washington’s pollution laws: How much fish do people eat? The answer will affect water …


State’s fish consumption rates to be updated

With the Pacific Ocean for one border and the Columbia River for another, it’s no surprise that fish is a regular part of many Washington residents’ diets. But when it …


Ranchers worried about ruling on waste control

Bill Demers is a small-time rancher, grazing three cows on 65 acres of rolling pasture in south Spokane County. It’s a job the retired juvenile court officer relishes. Demers’ cows …


Court: State can regulate waterways

In a case involving a Dayton rancher, the Washington state Supreme Court has upheld state officials’ authority to regulate cow pies in streams. The case involved Joseph Lemire, who grazes …


Spokane County wastewater plant permit invalidated

Spokane County’s permit to operate its 2-year-old, $173 million wastewater plant was partially invalidated by state regulators last week. The Washington State Pollution Control Hearings Board said the methodology used …


Waves of change

Ted Kardos Sr. has lived in Pend Oreille County for 50 years and says he’s seen the county’s lakes, streams and rivers negatively affected by development. That’s why Kardos is …


Water pollution limits stalled

The Washington state Department of Ecology has known since the 1990s that its water-pollution limits mean some Washingtonians regularly consume dangerous amounts of toxic chemicals in fish from local waterways. …


Medical Lake crafts shore plan

It’s not unusual to see dozens of people using the trails and parks around Medical Lake – running, walking dogs or putting boats in the water. But this well-loved lake …


City hopes to extend sewage outflow deadline

Spokane city leaders have promised for more than a decade to stop the flow of raw sewage into the Spokane River by 2018. But with five years left until that …


Spokane Valley company fined for dumping landfill waste

A Spokane Valley waste-handling business will pay thousands of dollars for dumping hazardous waste in a local landfill. Emerald Services Inc., located on North Sullivan Road in Spokane Valley, will …


Coyote Rock docks must be removed

Docks in the Spokane River at the upscale Coyote Rock housing development will have to be removed now that the state Supreme Court declined to take up an appeal to …


Heavy metal cleanup finishing

The Washington State Department of Ecology is wrapping up the last of its planned heavy metals cleanup projects along the Spokane River. The projects, which started in 2006, are designed …


State examining BNSF property

BNSF Railway Co. and Marathon Oil Co. may have to do some cleanup in Hillyard if an investigation prompted by the Washington state Department of Ecology shows petroleum-related contamination. The …


Ecology Youth Corps’ summer really picking up

Cigarette butts, fast food bags, used diapers and bottles full of urine are all in a day’s work for the Department of Ecology’s Youth Corps, which works through mid-August to …


Liberty Lake shoreline improvements allowed to remain

Most of the shoreline improvements installed without proper permits by a Liberty Lake homeowner will be allowed to stay after a recent decision from the Spokane County hearing examiner, but …


Pollutants found in remote lakes, rivers

Scientists consider Sullivan Lake’s waters relatively pristine. The 1,300-acre mountain lake in northeast Washington is home to a thriving kokanee salmon run. Along with confirmed sightings of grizzlies, wolves and …


Dock decision not last word

Environmental groups breathed a sigh of relief last week when the Washington State Court of Appeals ruled that docks installed at the Coyote Rock development in Spokane Valley were illegal, …


Liberty Lake man wants retroactive permit for shoreline changes

A Liberty Lake homeowner argued before the Spokane County Hearing Examiner on Wednesday that he cannot comply with a court order to remove features he built on his Liberty Lake …


Vote on commissioner’s absence arouses concern

Spokane Valley Planning Commissioner Marcia Sands is deciding her future on the commission after four of her fellow commissioners voted at last Thursday’s meeting not to excuse her absence after …


2010 recycling rate higher than state average

Residents of Spokane County are getting the hang of recycling. According to the Spokane Regional Solid Waste System and the Washington state Department of Ecology, the county recycled 331,793 tons …


Kaiser unveils $16 million cleanup plan

Kaiser Trentwood’s plant along the Spokane River has a long, illustrative history. Built to produce aluminum for military planes during World War II, the factory later became a steady source …


Sewage plant set to open this week

Spokane County officials expect to get a state permit today to operate their new sewage treatment plant – and to celebrate on Thursday. There may be some crossed fingers when …


State issues new discharge permit

Inland Empire Paper Co. has become the fourth Washington discharger to receive a new permit to pump treated wastewater in the Spokane River. Through the permit, the Washington Department of …