Oil train derailment in Whatcom County drives home transport risk concerns

January 17, 2021
Kimberly Cauvel

An oil train derailment spilling more than 29,000 gallons of Bakken crude in Whatcom County is prompting officials lobbying for state and federal oil train regulations in recent years to consider whether more can be done.

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photo: Amy Nelson © 2021

Business has been good — if not better — for some local enterprises, despite pandemic

January 15, 2021
Matt Benoit

Not all businesses are struggling during the pandemic, as some have seen upticks in business as people navigate the “new normal” nearly a year into the pandemic.

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photo: Amy Nelson © 2020

Economy, environment, social justice, COVID recovery, housing: legislators anticipate the 2021 session

January 8, 2021
Salish Current editors

Salish Current asked 40th and 42nd District legislators a few questions about how they see the legislative session that convenes on Monday, Jan. 11; their answers follow.

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Bellingham Herald news reporters opt to unionize, for the cause of ‘robust local news’

December 18, 2020
Mike Sato

Reporters at Washington state’s McClatchy Company-owned newspapers, including those at the Bellingham Herald, have moved to unionize.

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photo: Amy Nelson © 2020

Be fine or get fined: how businesses are achieving (or ignoring) COVID compliance

December 11, 2020
Matt Benoit

The COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in shifting hours and sales, to comply with shifting state-ordered public health mandates to keep businesses and their customers safe from the virus. But not every business complies.

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photo: Amy Nelson © 2020

New thinking, new technology needed for ‘transformation’ to a greener future

December 11, 2020
Heather Spaulding

For over a century, hydroelectricity has provided the Pacific Northwest with clean energy. Can we meet the challenge of living better electrically with greener energy?

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photo: Amy Nelson © 2020

Unlikely partners’ compromise will halt new fossil-fuel development at Cherry Point

November 29, 2020
Kimberly Cauvel

An effort to steer future development at Whatcom County’s primary industrial center away from fossil fuels while providing regulatory certainty is inching closer to completion with the help of an unlikely partnership between environment and industry interests.

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Community Voices / Nooksack water rights adjudication is an existential threat to farming’s future

November 13, 2020
Henry Bierlink

Whatcom County farmers say they view water rights adjudication as an existential threat to their future, in their long-term battle to maintain farming as part of the local economy and culture.

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photo: Kimberly Cauvel © 2020

Much more than a marina: Port of Bellingham drives economic recovery and growth

November 13, 2020
Kimberly Cauvel

When the COVID-19 pandemic emerged, responsibilities of the Port of Bellingham Board of Commissioners changed, to focus on keeping local businesses afloat through the economic downturn.

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photo: Kimberly Cauvel © 2020

Intalco’s closure brings pain for now — what may the future bring?

October 30, 2020
Kimberly Cauvel

After 54 years in operation, the Intalco smelter near Ferndale this summer stopped producing aluminum, put hundreds out of work and sent shockwaves through the community. The pain cut deep but may point a way to cleaner, more competitive heavy industry.

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photo: Port of Vancouver © 2020

Proposed Roberts Bank terminal will add cargo capacity — but at what cost to Salish Sea

August 25, 2020
Kimberly Cauvel

A lesser-known yet major Canadian infrastructure project could bring major changes to shipping traffic in waters shared by British Columbia and Washington. If constructed, Roberts Bank Terminal 2, would enable Canada to move another 2.4 million shipping containers per year through its southernmost terminal about 1 mile from the Washington state border.

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photo: Amy Nelson © 2020

Farming is more challenging than ever during the pandemic

August 7, 2020
Kimberly Cauvel

Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, farms are facing more challenges than ever during the busy season, with their workers among the most vulnerable to the virus and produce reaching fewer buyers through usual markets, festivals and tourism outlets.

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photo: Amy Nelson © 2019

No Whatcom vote this November on increase in Port commission members

July 24, 2020
Mike Sato

Port of Bellingham commissioners took no action at their July 14 meeting on allowing Whatcom County voters to decide whether to expand the commission to five members from the current three, effectively closing the issue for now.

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photo: Amy Nelson © 2020

Necessary travel: ferries’ winter schedule in summer brings travel delays for locals, visitors in San Juans

July 3, 2020
Genevieve Iverson

Currently, several COVID-shutdown related factors require WSF to continue running on a limited schedule even as summer travel increases, creating travel delays and raising as-yet unanswerable questions about when things may change.

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photo: Tony Angell © 2020

More scrutiny sought on proposed logging around North Fork near Glacier

June 26, 2020
Alex Meacham

The U.S. Forest Service has proposed logging about 5,700 acres near the North Fork of the Nooksack River around Glacier, Canyon and Wells creeks. Called the North Fork Nooksack Vegetation Management Project, the proposal focuses on the timber harvest part of the Forest Service’s multiuse mandate. That puts it at odds with the priorities of some conservation groups, and it is being met with requests for further evaluation.

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photo: Amy Nelson © 2020

Solidarity rally, Cornwall landfill, Cherry Point occupy local officials during the week ending June 12

June 11, 2020
Mike Sato

City officials praised organizers and participants of Bellingham’s Peaceful Solidarity Rally on June 6 at Maritime Heritage Park, in one of several local government meetings last week.

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