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Washington State News Archive

Below are archived news items for the current month. To view a previous month, choose it from the list below.

"$103 million spent by Olympic National Park visitors in 2010, study says"--Port Angeles Peninsula Daily News
A study recently released by the National Park Service shows that the nearly 2,844,500 visitors to Olympic National Park in 2010 contributed $103 million to the local economy. Average spending was determined to be $36.21 per visitor. Of the total amount spent, 52% was spent on lodging and food, 29% was spent on retail items, 10% was spent on entertainment, 7% was spent on gas and transportation, and 2% was spent on groceries. The numbers may actually be an underestimation, though, as traffic counters on U.S. Highway 101 were down in June and December of 2010. The study looked at the number of park visits and results of visitor surveys. Park user fees were excluded. - 03/01/2012

"New report says Pierce County flood control inadequate"--Tacoma News Tribune
According to a draft Rivers Flood Hazard Management Plan that was recently released by Pierce County, many flood control structures in the county are inadequate and more than $316 million in projects are recommended to help fix them. Proposed projects include new and rebuilt levees, new setbacks, and new flood walls. The public can comment on the draft plan at a forum on March 13th and a final version is expected to be forwarded to the county council for adoption in September. - 03/05/2012

"New website maps avalanche dangers in Washington mountains"--Bellingham Herald
Thanks to the work of an associate professor of environmental studies at Western Washington University’s Huxley College of the Environment, a new avalanche danger website with maps for the Cascade and Olympic mountains in Washington and Mount Hood in Oregon is now available. The maps, which are updated daily, use five colors to convey the level of avalanche danger, based on data gathered by the Northwest Weather and Avalanche Center in Seattle. - 03/05/2012

"Governor signs bill to address online impersonation"--Olympia Olympian
Thanks to a bill signed by Governor Gregoire, victims of impersonation on social networking sites will be able to more easily sue their impersonators. The new law will make Washington one of only a few states that allow people to sue specifically for electronic impersonation. The hope is that it will be easier to prove a case under the new law than it is through current avenues available to victims. - 03/07/2012

"Apple Valley school cleanup plan open to public comment"--Yakima Herald-Republic
A proposed remediation plan to address contaminated soil at Apple Valley Elementary School is open for public comment through April 16th. In the plan, the Dept. of Ecology proposes a combination of new topsoil and grass to protect school children from exposure to lead and arsenic under the playground. Similar contamination has been identified at a number of schools in the Yakima, East Valley, and West Valley school districts, including Barge-Lincoln, Hoover, Whitney, and Terrace Heights elementaries and Wilson Middle School. - 03/14/2012

"Study: Plenty of logging waste to support biomass expansion"--Longview Daily News
A first of its kind study by the Dept. of Natural Resources (DNR) has revealed that Washington forests have enough supply of waste wood to more than double biomass energy production statewide. According to the study, in 2010 logging left 1.4 million tons of tree branches and other leftover wood in slash piles. Of that, only 439,000 to 558,000 tons were used to fire biomass boilers. Neither of the states larges biomass energy producers, Longview Fibre Paper and Packaging, Inc. and Weyerhaeuser Co., is ready to ramp up energy production at this time, but both companies are examining the state’s study. DNR plans to release a calculator later this year to help industries identify large biomass supply spots. - 03/17/2012

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