Category Archives: High Country News

Settlement forces Oregon to update water pollution permits

In 2017, the state had the worst backlog of expired permits nationwide. Source: Settlement forces Oregon to update water pollution permits

On one of Oregon’s wildest rivers, mining protections lapse

The Department of Interior’s failure to extend restrictions exposes the weaknesses of a key environmental law. In tight, deep canyons and past tree-trimmed sandbars, the Chetco River runs nearly 56 miles from a remote area of southern Oregon’s coastal mountains to the Pacific Ocean. Many of the river’s miles lie in stretches of national forest […]
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Rural Oregon has a weedy mess on its hands (Miraculous misdeeds)

On GMO and seed misdeeds, has the punishment fit the crime? In September 2012, the Scotts Miracle-Gro Company was fined $4 million for illegally applying pesticides that were known to be toxic to birds — to a line of birdseed. The company pled guilty to adding the two pesticides to its seed to prevent insect […]
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GMO grass is creeping across Oregon (Little weed, big problem)

Missteps by agribusiness giants allowed the invasion. Now they’re off the hook for cleanup. In the failing light of an unusually warm January day, Jerry Erstrom and I race along a dirt track behind Rod Frahm’s white pickup. Here, near Ontario, Oregon, a stone’s throw from the Idaho border, Frahm grows onions, squash and corn. […]
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How the Yurok Tribe is reclaiming the Klamath River

For the first time, the largest tribe in California has one of its own to lead its legal battles. On a warm September Saturday in 2002, Amy Cordalis stood in a Yurok Tribal Fisheries Department boat on the Klamath River, in response to reports from fishermen that something was amiss on the river. On this […]
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How the Yurok Tribe is reclaiming the Klamath River

For the first time, the largest tribe in California has one of its own to lead its legal battles. On a warm September Saturday in 2002, Amy Cordalis stood in a Yurok Tribal Fisheries Department boat on the Klamath River, in response to reports from fishermen that something was amiss on the river. Source: How […]
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Latest: Northwest timber poaching increases

Forest Service rangers manage to bust some tree thieves — but most still get away. The Northwest’s stands of enormous bigleaf maple and redwood trees draw poachers, who lop off redwood burls for use in furniture and cut chunks of figured maple for guitar-making. National forests and other public lands in Oregon, Washington, California and […]
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Portland’s gentrification has its roots in racism (‘Alienated’ in Portland)

Black Americans aren’t defined by poor schools, menial jobs, high crime and incarceration. They endure them. A Civil Conversation is a new, ongoing series exploring the experiences of African-Americans in the West, in an effort to create more informed public dialog on issues of race and racism. A few years ago, after the violence in […]
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Timber is Oregon’s biggest carbon polluter

A new study finds that forests are key to reducing the state’s climate impacts. Source: Timber is Oregon’s biggest carbon polluter

As Oregon’s midterms approach, divided sides dig in

Dana Loesch paced the carpeted stage under the fluorescent lights of a Holiday Inn one February afternoon in Portland, Oregon. A 39-year-old radio commentator and National Rifle Association spokesperson, Loesch bills herself as a conservative with “punk-rock irreverence.” Source: As Oregon’s midterms approach, divided sides dig in — High Country News