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Category: Environment

June
26th

UPDATE – Lawmakers still high-centered on budget, fish rules; Boeing explains its interest

A request by Boeing and Senate Republicans for additional research into fish-consumption risks is one of several smaller issues still holding up the Legislature’s quest to finish an operating budget deal Wednesday. The Republican-led Senate announced a deal was in place and both House Speaker Frank Chopp and spokesmen for Gov. Jay Inslee said that announcement was premature because negotiations were ongoing.

In the meantime, talks continued on the fish-standards issue that reared its head fairly late in the budget talks. Boeing wants more study before the Department of Ecology adopts higher fish-consumption standards. Inslee’s budget team and House

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June
25th

Gov. Inslee welcomes Obama’s new proposals on climate change

President Obama was laying out details of new rules to combat global warming today, and Gov. Jay Inslee put out a statement beforehand praising the “smart, practical” proposals and saying the proposals  “will lead to real results.’’

Limiting greenhouse-gas emissions by older power plants through rules adopted by the Environmental Protection Agency is a key part of Obama’s plan. A breakdown on the plan is here. Obama also was expected to announce that the Keystone XL Pipeline should not be approved unless it does not increase emissions.

Inslee, a longtime proponent of a

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June
4th

UPDATE – Gov. Inslee’s climate-change work group passes 1st big hurdle, picks consultant without a partisan fight

The legislative workgroup chaired by Gov. Jay Inslee voted unanimously this evening to hire a Virginia-based climate consultant to examine Washington state’s options for reducing greenhouse gases that are contributing to global climate change. The Climate Legislative and Executive Workgroup is tasked with figuring out the best way for Washington to meet its goal of slashing greenhouse-gas emissions to 1990 levels by 2020 – and how best to reach that goal set by the then-Democrat-controlled Legislature in 2008.

Getting an independent evaluation of what could work in the

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June
4th

Governor’s climate work group to pick consultant today

 

 

 

Gov. Jay Inslee’s climate-change work group is under way, and a pivotal moment is taking place this afternoon in Olympia. That is when the Climate Legislative and Executive Workgroup’s members – namely the Democratic governor and two lawmakers from each political party – hold interviews with five of the consultants that responded to a request for proposals to study state responses to climate change.

All told, 14 consultants submitted applications. Democratic Sen. Kevin Ranker of Orcas Island said that lawmakers and government staffers went through

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May
13th

Environmentalist Beth Doglio talking about coal exports Tuesday in Lacey

Environmental advocate Beth Doglio of Olympia is scheduled to speak Tuesday about the fight against Northwest coal exports during the regular monthly meeting of the Democratic Study Group at Panorama in Lacey. Doglio is director of anti-coal campaigns for both Climate Solutions and the Power Past Coal groups.

The study group meets at 1:30 p.m. at the Panorama Auditorium, 1670 Circle Loop S.E. Events are open to the public and to people of any political affiliation.

Doglio’s talk – titled “Coal Export – Northwest Crossroads” – is expected to discuss the fight against the export potentially of 150 million tons of

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April
30th

Toxics bill dies at session’s end; advocates on both sides want to revive it in special session but disagree on how

A bill that would outlaw two Tris chemicals used as flame retardants in consumer products died when the Washington Legislature’s regular session ended Sunday. But Democratic Sen. Sharon Nelson of Maury Island said she is working to revive a stronger measure than business groups and the chemical industry wanted.

A special session of the Legislature starts May 13 to complete a two-year budget and Nelson said Tuesday: “I’m going to be pushing it.”

Her Republican counterpart, Sen. Doug Ericksen of Ferndale, said he also wants to pass a flame-retardants bill that is less sweeping while waiting to see what emerges

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April
18th

Report: Senate budget puts less into K-12 education than advertised

The Senate Majority Coalition Caucus budget that is billed as a big new investment in education – without new taxes – apparently is not putting in as much new cash for K-12 public schools as previously thought. Just yesterday Brian Rosenthal of the Seattle Times dug in to some of the numbers and finds that it falls well short of claims to invest $1 billion in new money for schools.

Read the report here, and a takeaway excerpt is here:

The Senate’s two-year budget was advertised as a $1 billion funding increase for schools. But if you add up

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April
17th

In split vote, Senate sends a bill banning two toxic flame retardants to House for consideration

The state Senate voted to send a bill outlawing certain flame retardants back to

the House on Wednesday. House Bill 1294 was watered down from what the House originally approved on a partisan vote.

Democratic Sen. Sharon Nelson of Maury Island blasted the compromise, saying the “gutted version” that passed “removed much-needed protections for our babies, children and families from these harmful flame retardants that are known to cause cancer.” But Sen. Doug Ericksen, R-Ferndale, says the proposal is a compromise that preserves a process already in place for the Department of Ecology to review chemicals of concern.

Jonathan

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