Inslee’s chemical hunt won’t target ag, officials say

From the Capital Press Washington Gov. Jay Inslee’s renewed push to scrub toxics from waterways won’t affect agriculture because farm chemicals already are regulated by federal law, state officials say. At a press conference last week in Seattle, Inslee said his administration will target chemicals in everyday products, such as brake pads and furniture. The Ecology and Health departments will develop ... Read More »

WSU Extension research finds way to fight cheatgrass

From the New York Times Cheatgrass could vie for the title of the most successful invasive species in North America. The weed lives in every state, and is the dominant plant on more than 154,000 square miles of the West, by one estimate. When it turns green in the spring, “you can actually see it from space,” said Bethany Bradley, ... Read More »

Preliminary 2015 WSU Variety Testing data available

Preliminary 2015 Washington State University Variety Testing data is available here. Also new on the website are articles on: •Control Rush Skeletonweed in the fall. •What to sow when pH is low. •Another warm, dry winter favored in 2015/16. •Getting the facts on soil acidification in the Palouse. Read More »

Years later, dam removal still an issue in PNW

Their marketing might suggest Patagonia can create a Better Sweater®, but that doesn’t make them experts when it comes to the Snake Columbia River System. Efforts by the California-based clothing company to reinvigorate the dam breaching debate with its Oct. 3 flotilla protest not only goes against the last dozen years of scientific studies by National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration ... Read More »

Washington’s drought predicted to extend into second year

From a 09/24/15 Washington State Department of Ecology news release Even though cooler temperatures and fall colors are returning, Washington’s historic drought isn’t over. Not by a long shot. “The recent rains were nice, but we’re not out of the woods yet,” said Director Maia Bellon with the Washington Department of Ecology. “We’re carrying a huge water deficit into this ... Read More »

Washington state to set carbon pollution limits

Today, the Washington Department of Ecology formally began writing a rule that would require the state’s largest polluters to reduce their greenhouse gases. Ecology is considering businesses and organizations that are responsible for producing 100,000 metric tons or more of greenhouse gases be covered under the rule. The types of businesses include: · Natural gas distributors · Petroleum fuel producers ... Read More »

USDA announces 2016 small grains projected prices

Barley and wheat prices available USDA’s Risk Management Agency (RMA) has announced the 2016 projected prices for winter and spring wheat and winter barley for Idaho, Oregon and Washington. These prices are critical for producers evaluating their crop insurance coverage options. RMA also reminds producers of the Sept. 30 deadline for purchasing crop insurance for fall-planted barley with winter coverage ... Read More »

CRP grazing extended for fire, drought victims

From the Capital Press Ranchers in Eastern Washington who have lost grazing ground to drought or wildfire will be able to graze CRP (Conservation Reserve Program) land through Dec. 15, says Judith Olson, state director of the USDA Farm Service Agency in Spokane. That’s welcome news and will help meet the short-term needs of hundreds of ranchers throughout Eastern Washington ... Read More »

USDA releases crop insurance harvest prices for 2015

Small Grains and Canola Revenue Harvest Prices Available USDA’s Risk Management Agency (RMA) today announced approved harvest prices for the 2016 crop year for revenue protection insurance plans within the Common Crop Insurance Policy for wheat, barley, fall canola and rapeseed located in Alaska, Idaho, Oregon and Washington. For producers who bought either of the revenue protection plans, the harvest ... Read More »

Mid-Columbia agencies asked to push water conservation

From the Tri-City Herald While the effects of this drought are still being felt across the Mid-Columbia, area water officials are urging cities, schools and parks to start preparing for drought conditions next summer. On Wednesday, the subcommittee of the Yakima Integrated Plan Workgroup focused on municipal water use announced that a letter has been sent to 204 public entities ... Read More »