Ecology releases draft rule to cap carbon emissions

Today, the Washington State Department of Ecology (Ecology) released its draft Clean Air Rule to limit carbon pollution. Organizations that emit 100,000 metric tons or more of greenhouse gases in the state would be required to reduce their carbon emissions 5 percent every three years beginning in 2017. Besides gradually reducing their carbon pollution, organizations could meet their reduction goals ... Read More »

Washington drought losses estimated at $336 million…and counting

From the Capital Press Washington farmers lost at least $336 million to the drought last summer, a preliminary estimate likely to climb as more figures on yields and prices became available, according to a report by the state Department of Agriculture. The report estimated specific dollar losses for only a handful of crops — wheat, apples, blueberries and red raspberries. Read ... Read More »

Producers look ahead to New Year filled with uncertainties

From The Capital Press The new year is a symbol of new beginnings in farm country, a time to look ahead to what the future may bring and to engage in that age-old tradition of making resolutions. To see what Pacific Northwest farmers are resolving for 2016 read the rest of the story here. Read More »

Carbon Corner: More benefit than harm

Regardless of whether or not carbon pollution is the actual crisis some make it out to be, it is a topic that is not disappearing from headlines anytime soon. To the right is graph of greenhouse gas (ghg) pollution sources in Washington state. As the chart shows, 6 percent of our state’s ghg emissions are attributed to agriculture, but that is ... Read More »

Whitman County wheat leads the way

From The Spokesman-Review Whitman County crushed the wheat productivity of any other county in 2015, producing nearly 30.5 million bushels, according to the National Agricultural Statistics Service. Lincoln, the next closest county in Washington, wasn’t even close. Whitman County’s production beat Lincoln County in winter and spring wheat production by a combined 14.6 million bushels. Read the rest of the story here. Read More »

Carbon Corner: Farmers sequester it every day

In early December, Governor Inslee told business leaders in Washington state that our state has done nothing about Carbon since 2008. This is untrue for many business industries, from manufacturing to transportation and agriculture. Farmers sequester carbon in the soil every day by: • Looking for and finding ways to leave more plant residue on the field without losing vital ... Read More »

Meteorologist predicts variation on El Nino pattern: A wet PNW winter

From the Capital Press Eastern Washington University meteorologist Robert Quinn said he believes that contrary to most El Nino weather patterns, the Pacific Northwest will see excessive rain this winter. Speaking at the 75th annual convention of the Oregon Seed Growers League in Salem in December, Quinn noted that an El Nino weather system typically will split into two storm ... Read More »

Washington drought no longer ‘extreme’

From the Capital Press The drought is losing its grip on Washington, with the “extreme” conditions that reigned over most of the state last summer now completely gone, the U.S. Drought Monitor reported Thursday. A week earlier, one-third of Washington was in extreme drought, the second-worst drought classification. The area, all or parts of 20 counties east of the Cascades, ... Read More »

Drought impacts on Washington’s wheat crop

In response to a question by the Washington Department of Agriculture, WAWG’s Executive Director Michelle Hennings and the Washington Grain Commission CEO Glen Squires put together some information regarding the impact the drought had on the past two wheat crops. For wheat, both 2014 and 2015 had decreased precipitation levels in Eastern Washington, roughly 33 percent less than average levels. Because of ... Read More »

Washington is actually doing quite a bit to protect the environment

From the Association of Washington Business Last week, shortly before he took off for Paris and the global climate summit, Gov. Jay Inslee met with members of AWB’s Executive Committee. The meeting provided an opportunity for a frank and informal discussion that might have touched on a half dozen or more issues, but it was clear that both the governor and ... Read More »