OLYMPIA – The Washington State Department of Natural Resources (DNR) today announced several measures to address China’s action on shellfish imports and to ensure the safety of shellfish
Cyber Monday kicks off the online holiday shopping season, and federal law enforcement officials are warning about cyber scams that can wreck your holiday spirit. U.S. Attorney Jenny A. Durkan and Brad Bench, Special Agent in Charge of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), highlighted some of the dangers circulating on the web, including “spear phishing” and sales of counterfeit goods. Today, ICE agents across the country shut down more than 700 websites which were selling counterfeit sports and designer items – some of the counterfeit goods pose safety concerns.
“Scammers turn out in force during the holidays and want your personal information in their stockings,” said U.S. Attorney Jenny A. Durkan. “They have more ways than ever before to steal your information. Sometimes scammers try to get your information by putting up a phony website with a name very similar to a legitimate retailer or they send you an email purporting to be about an ‘order’ you placed. If you open the attachment to see what you ordered, it can infect your computer and give scam artists remote access to it. We urge everyone to be on guard and protect yourself”
“Spear phishing” is when online scammers use snippets of information about a victim to try to gain access to additional personal information. Spear phishing might use information posted on social media or target an individual because of their online shopping. For example, if a victim has shopped online for certain products, a spear phishing scam may use the fact that the person accessed certain sites to try to send malicious code in an attachment or link related to that shopping.
Grays Harbor, Wash. — City University of Seattle will offer aspiring teachers in Grays Harbor and Pacific Counties a unique opportunity to study locally for their Bachelor of Arts in Education this summer. Students who have earned or are nearly finished with an associate degree may enroll now in program classes on the Grays Harbor College (GHC) campus.
“In light of ongoing state budget cuts to higher education, I’m delighted CityU of Seattle’s Albright School of Education (ASOE) will be able to provide an accommodating and affordable solution for students in and around Grays Harbor. This new partnership also will allow students the opportunity to develop their specialty skills in high needs areas,” said CityU President Lee Gorsuch.
LONGVIEW, Wash. - The State of Washington wants to weigh in on the environmental review process for a coal export terminal that has been proposed for Longview.
Several conservation groups banded together earlier this month to challenge a permit for the terminal, granted by the Cowlitz County Commission. On Tuesday, the Washington Department of Ecology filed as an "intervenor" in that case - not taking sides, but exercising its legal option to have a seat at the table.
According to the groups' attorney, Jan Hasselman of Earthjustice, the move could indicate the state is also not convinced that the environmental and health effects of transporting, storing and shipping coal have been taken into account.
"Washington stepping into this case is a recognition that it's an important test case about whether this is the right fit for our state, and whether the coal companies have followed the appropriate process in involving the public in this important decision."
LONGVIEW, Wash. - The face-offs continue between Northwest conservation groups and coal companies. Today, an appeal is being filed at the Washington State Shoreline Hearings Board. A coalition wants to reverse last month's decision by the Cowlitz County Commission to allow a coal export terminal to be built on waterfront land in Longview.
The groups' attorney, Jan Hasselman of Earthjustice, says the coal industry is scouting the Pacific coastline for sites it can use to ship coal from Montana and Wyoming to China, which he says should require more environmental scrutiny at the state or regional level.
"The governors of Washington, Oregon and California need to stand up and say, 'No! This isn't the right thing for our communities.' They haven't done that. So, the law puts the burden on the local authorities, who are making these permitting decisions."
Aberdeen, WA – Big things are happening at the Port of Grays Harbor. Export trade volumes are up 84% over 2009 totals, with over 1.65 million metric tons (mt) of cargo being loaded on an estimated 100 vessels by the end of 2010. But what exactly is driving this historical growth? Diverse cargo exports.
Grays Harbor’s business development strategy has resulted in long-term customer investments and partnerships. Partnerships such as those with long-time customer Ag Processing, Inc. which has shipped over 1 million mt of cargo through its current facility and is now constructing on-site storage silos and infrastructure to increase the handling capacity at Terminal 2. This multimillion-dollar expansion will allow AGP to export grain, feed ingredients, and oilseeds along with their current range of processed products to customers in Pacific Rim countries.
A $15 million dollar capital investment in the Port's marine terminal rail system is being driven by the growing need for additional rail capacity to accommodate not only AGP’s expansion, but the growing auto exports through Terminal 4. Over 21,000 autos have been exported via ro/ro vessels in 2010 via Pasha Automotive Service and Partners Shipping at Terminal 4. The Pasha Group and the Port of Grays Harbor’s joint marketing agreement that has resulted in American made automobiles being exported to China and other destinations.
Kelso, WA — The Cowlitz County Commission put its rubber stamp on a plan today that allows an Australia-based company to establish a coal export terminal in Longview, WA.
The commissioners, by a 3-0 vote, granted a permit to allow the coal exporting facility on waterfront land in Longview without a full analysis of its potentially significant effects on people and the environment. Approval of the permit was given despite a lack of fundamental scientific information.
“As a local businessman I am disappointed by the commissioners' decision today,” said Stanley Florek, Chief Executive Officer of Tangerine Power. “I want to see Cowlitz County creating manufacturing jobs for 21st century industries, like clean energy, not exporting dirty resources. Tying up our waterfront properties to ship coal to China is a step in the wrong direction, for our economy and our environment.”
SEATTLE - The green power engine is gaining steam, according to a new study backed by the United Nations. It says renewable energy resources accounted for more than half of all new power-generating capacity built in 2009, both in the United States and Europe, and predicts renewables will continue to outpace conventional power sources.
The trend is playing out in the Northwest, too. About 4,100 megawatts (MW) of power are now generated here from wind, solar and geothermal sources. That's only 5 percent of the total, but Rachel Scrimshak, executive director of the Renewable Northwest Project, says it's up from 60 MW ten years ago, and is enough to power one million homes.
"It's a terrific amount of growth. It shows that people have capability and experience and are willing to invest in relatively new technologies, and incorporate them in our system."
Picnic Season! In case you didn’t already know, Saturday is the official beginning of this glorious time of year! Well, it may not be listed on your calendar, but some things, like Christmas, are so imbedded in our lives that they don’t need to be written on a calendar. You just know it.
I do admit that I am a bit of a picnic fanatic. Not everyone has several types of picnic baskets. I can’t get through the summer without at least 3 very diverse types of picnic gear. First there is the magazine worthy, pull out all the stops, over the top picnic basket. This is not a basket which you take on hikes. This is the picnic basket that should come complete with a serving staff. Blankets are a must, and comfy chairs are a bonus. Pillows are absolutely never to be left behind! How in the world are you going to take that dreamy sun-washed nap if you don’t have plenty of pillows?