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News, factoids, and insights from KUOW's newsroom. And maybe some peeks behind the scenes. Check back daily for updates.

Have any leads or feedback for the KUOW Blog? Contact Dyer Oxley at


  • Drought emergency declared for all of Washington state

    A drought emergency was declared for the entire state of Washington Tuesday, as state officials face low water supply ahead of an expected warmer-than-normal summer.

    "We depend on that winter snowpack to meet the needs of Washington’s farmers, fish, and communities during the dry summer months. And this year, it’s just not at the level we’re accustomed to and rely on," Gov. Jay Inslee said in a statement.

    The Washington State Department of Ecology declared the drought emergency April 16, 2024. The department makes such a declaration when the state's water supply is less than 75% of normal. Current statewide snowpack is at 68% of normal; however, regions like the Olympic Mountains are much lower. This means that streams are running lower and warmer. For example, the Dept. of Ecology points to the Chelan River where streamflow is at 52% of normal.

    RELATED: As the Northwest spring arrives, so do anxieties over water for farming, and summer wildfires

    Areas around Seattle, Tacoma, and Everett are excluded from the emergency declaration, since water management strategies in these communities make them more resilient, according to the department.

    "For Everett, and Seattle, and Tacoma, on those utilities that have large reservoirs, that allows them to more actively manage their water supplies," said Caroline Mellor, statewide drought lead with the Department of Ecology. "And they have been able to manage their supplies looking at conditions coming into the spring and summer ... and so they do not currently, nor anticipate facing any hardship for their water supplies. That's specifically for those three utilities."

    The declaration means that $4.5 million in drought response grants will be opened up to public agencies to help mitigate complications from low water supplies. It also allows Ecology to handle emergency water right permits.

    Washington state emergency drought declaration 2024

    The current situation in Washington state has been long in the making. The department notes that Tuesday's declaration is "really a continuation of 2023’s drought emergency." That declaration was slated to end in June of this year; however, the recent El Niño weather pattern meant that enough rain did not fall to make up for 2023's loss.

    Last winter was relatively dry. This came after Seattle was asked to conserve water in the fall due to low supply. The Seattle area then recorded its warmest December on record. Projections for summer 2024 indicate warmer than normal temperatures.

    “What that actually means, in practice, is that we are facing what's called a ‘snowpack drought'," Mellor said. "A snowpack drought is different than just a regular rain or precipitation drought, because this means that most of our precipitation has come as rain instead of snow, or that snow has melted much earlier than it would in a normal year; we would expect the snow melt to happen gradually throughout spring and summer from the mountains”

    “The Olympic basin is at 61% of normal for snowpack,” she said. “And North Puget Sound, that includes the North Cascades, is at 57% of normal … Lower Yakima, for that basin, they’re at 46% of snowpack. That's really concerning, because that means that water that's held in that snowpack either has already melted out to the ocean, or will be melting out a lot earlier. We are already seeing lower-than-normal streamflow conditions, as well as a clear forecast for continued or worsening streamflow conditions for April to September."

    Mellor said people can expect to see streams drying up sooner than expected, especially in August. This will affect irrigation and recreational fishing.

    Ecology said that many watersheds are already projecting low water supplies over the coming warm months. For example, water systems in Clallam County and Whatcom County are now trucking in water to meet demand. Mellor said Ecology anticipates that water may need to be trucked into the Olympic Peninsula this summer.

    “There are clear impacts that we expect for water users and the environment across the state," Mellor said. "Specifically for agriculture, there are a number of impacts expected for irrigators and other agricultural sectors, as well as for domestic drinking water supplies, particularly for rural areas on smaller drinking water systems.”

    Mellor said that drought declarations have increased over the past 10 years, since the "historically warm and dry drought of 2015." Washington has declared drought in six of the last 10 years.

    "I will say, while these conditions are not as bad as 2015, we are already seeing these conditions in April. And with forecasts for warmer temperatures way above normal, and somewhat below normal precipitation, we have no expectation that these conditions will improve. We expect that they'll either stay the same or get worse in terms of drought conditions across the state."

    Looking ahead, Mellor recommends that Washingtonians consider drought-tolerant plants for gardening, and using low-water-use gardening practices, like a hose timer. Also, only run dishwashers when they are full.

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  • What's behind Molbak's return as the 'Green Phoenix Collaborative'

    caption: This is an AI generated image using ChatGPT. Organizers with Green Phoenix Collaborative feed their conversations about the project into ChatGPT and the AI program conjured up this image.
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    This is an AI generated image using ChatGPT. Organizers with Green Phoenix Collaborative feed their conversations about the project into ChatGPT and the AI program conjured up this image.
    ChatGPT via Parsons and Co communications firm

    When Molbak's Garden and Home ceased operations in January, it was a shock to Woodinville's green thumb community. When owners announced that the business would return, but as an entirely different operation, it came as yet another shock — and a point of confusion.

    What is the "Green Phoenix Collaborative?"

    "I don't mean to sound kind of, you know, overly altruistic, but it is really something that we're doing for the community," Molbak's CEO Julie Kouhia told KUOW. "We think that it is a great thing for the community. … The reason that we would do this is because people were excited about it and people wanted it to happen. And if they don't, then we won't do it.”

    RELATED: Molbak's from the dead in Woodinville

    Molbak's remains a business. But moving forward, it won't be a retail operation like it had been for nearly 70 years. Owners have envisioned a new business model: the Green Phoenix Collaborative. Think of the collaborative like a host of the site, allowing "partnerships" to operate there — people and organizations using the land for community gardens, event space, classes, entertainment, art events, and other gardening-related activities. It depends on who steps up to participate.

    Kouhia said she wants it to be a place "where kids can get off their iPhones and come in and learn how to do something to help combat climate change."

    Mobalk's plans to charge little-to-no rent for participants to operate there. It's now asking for contributions via Indiegogo to help get the collaborative up and running. Green Phoenix Collaborative aims to raise $2.5 million by May 9. It costs about $1 million to maintain the property for one year. The other $1.5 million will be put toward hiring a small team and managing a website (the collaborative wants to offer online classes and podcasts). It will also be spent to support "partnerships and prepping space for folks to cohabitate," Kouhia said, adding that she hopes to break even in the end.

    Why the change?

    Molbak's was a community hub in Woodinville for decades. In 2008, the business sold its property to a developer, Green Partners, with the idea that the area would be developed into something new, with Molbak's included. Green Partners became the landlord of the property, and Molbak's worked with the developer for more than 10 years on the future project. Kouhia said the result would be a model for other cities to copy, with gardening and green space between buildings.

    But in late 2023, a rift emerged between the two parties. While she was tight-lipped about details, Kouhia said Molbak's wanted to build its new retail operation on a new plot, while continuing to operate on its old property. When construction was finished around 2026, the business would have moved over. After going through mediation in December, Molbak's opted to shut down its business in January 2024.

    Continue reading »
  • Mount Rainier visitors react to new timed entrance reservation policy

    caption: Leo Yang (center right) and his extended family at Mount Rainier National Park, April 9, 2024
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    Leo Yang (center right) and his extended family at Mount Rainier National Park, April 9, 2024

    Summer visitors to Washington state's Mount Rainier must get timed entry reservations, so they won't be turned away at the entrance gate. People are beginning to snap up available slots. So the earlier you can plan your summer visit, the better.

    During warm summer weekends at Mount Rainier, lines at the entrance gate can approach three hours long. Then, like dinner passing through a python, that bolus of cars snakes its way to the overfilled parking lot at Paradise, where trails get crowded and fragile plants get trampled.

    RELATED: Meteor shower casualties — Mount Rainier wildflowers

    Visitors have told the park service they're fed up with the overcrowding. The new timed-entry policy is meant to space people out more.

    Leo Yang is visiting Rainier from Sammamish with his extended family. He sees both sides of the issue.

    "National parks should be accessible for a lot of people," he said. "So instead of people just having to make a reservation like you do at like a restaurant ... they should be able to just drive in and be able to explore."

    But on the other hand, he understands that the system will help protect wildlife and reduce long entrance lines to get into the park.

    "It's probably a good thing just so that we could preserve this place a little longer."

    RELATED: How should park officials deal with traffic/visitors on Mount Rainier?

    Michelle Thomas, who traveled with Sean Pank from Oregon, says she's cool with it.

    "I'm glad we know, because I'll plan ahead, but I like planning ahead, so I'll do that," Pank said, adding that that they tend to choose unpopulated places to hike anyway, so are unlikely to be affected.

    But Agnes Jurkowski from Chicago is skeptical. She says it's "not the best idea for me because I like to go with the flow, day by day. [I'm] not a really huge planner."

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  • Puyallup Tribe to have 17 acres of waterfront land added to reservation

    caption: FILE: Dakota Case makes his way up a hill along the Puyallup River before the Puyallup Tribe welcomed the first salmon of the year with a ceremony on Tuesday, May 15, 2018.
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    FILE: Dakota Case makes his way up a hill along the Puyallup River before the Puyallup Tribe welcomed the first salmon of the year with a ceremony on Tuesday, May 15, 2018.
    KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

    About 17 acres of ancestral homeland will soon be restored to the Puyallup Tribe.

    The Puyallup Tribe of Indians Land Into Trust Act transfers land along the Tacoma waterfront to the federal Bureau of Indian Affairs, allowing the Tribe to expand its reservation and access to federal benefits associated with it.

    "This Act will restore the Tribe's place along Commencement Bay and will expand the Tribe's presence along the Blair Waterway," Puyallup Tribal Council Chairman Bill Sterud said in a statement. "It is truly historic for the Tribe."

    RELATED: Tribes call for national ban on salmon-killing chemical in car tires

    On Thursday, the U.S. House of Representatives voted 400-15 to approve the Act, which the U.S. Senate passed unanimously in December. The Act now goes to President Joe Biden's desk.

    The land in question is already owned by the Puyallup Tribe, and is the site of the Tribe's new Ruston Way waterfront property. But the stretch of land has been excluded from federal trust because of "an absurd consequence of the decades of pollution brought to ancestral Puyallup lands," according to the Tribe. The land was contaminated over the years by industrial development near Commencement Bay.

    RELATED: Dam owner pleads guilty after spilling turf, tire bits in Puyallup River

    The Tribe was left to clean up the polluted property themselves, to bring it into "virtually pristine condition." According to the Tribe, the Bureau of Indian Affairs would not accept it into trust otherwise.

    Benefits associated with the land include tax-exempt financing, discounted leasing rates, and new market tax credits, which are intended to incentivize private investments in economically distressed communities by providing investors with a federal tax credit.

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  • To ease Seattle police shortage, city looks to speed up hiring process

    caption: The Seattle City Council is considering an ordinance to streamline the testing process for police recruits in order to combat severe staffing shortages.
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    The Seattle City Council is considering an ordinance to streamline the testing process for police recruits in order to combat severe staffing shortages.
    Seattle Police Department recruiting video, courtesy of SPD.

    The Seattle City Council is drafting legislation to move all the city’s police recruiting efforts into the police department itself. It’s part of an effort to ease acute staffing shortages at SPD by speeding up the testing and hiring process.

    At a briefing last month Seattle Police Chief Adrian Diaz said, “We've lost 725 officers over the last five years.” He said SPD is down to about 913 trained and deployable officers — the lowest level of police staffing since the 1990s.

    RELATED: Higher salaries? Subsidized housing? What will it take for Seattle to recruit and retain more police?

    At a committee meeting Thursday, Council President Sara Nelson blamed the previous council majority for what she said was a reluctance to add positions at the police department. For that reason, Nelson said the council focused on implementing Mayor Bruce Harrell’s 2022 retention and recruitment plan through the city’s Department of Human Resources instead, where progress has been slow.

    “One of the problems was that some of the recommendations…were just not taken up," Nelson said. "That might have been an issue with bandwidth.”

    Or, she said, the city’s Department of Human Resources might have lacked expertise in the specifics of police hiring.

    The two police recruiters called for under Harrell’s plan have since been moved from that department over to SPD. Now Nelson is developing proposed legislation to provide “wraparound support” to police applicants.

    The measure would add a manager over the two recruiters who would be responsible for improving outcomes around hiring. One goal would be to contact every applicant within two business days, and again within two business days after they complete the required written exam.

    RELATED: Did Seattle defund the police? Five graphs explain this enduring myth

    Greg Doss with the City Council's central staff said the timeframe for SPD's hiring process used to be up to nine months, and the goal is to reduce that by more than half. Entry level candidates must complete a written exam, a physical agility test, an interview, a background investigation, a medical evaluation, a psychological evaluation, and a polygraph exam.

    The legislation may expand or change which required exam is offered, to resemble the one used in neighboring cities. Currently SPD requires applicants to take National Testing Network’s FrontLine exam, used by other big city departments on the West Coast. But the exam provided by Public Safety Testing is more common in Washington and used by smaller neighboring cities.

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  • Sen. Murray pushes for outside investigation into Tacoma ICE facility

    caption: A detainee sits in the intake area at the Northwest Detention Center on Wednesday, June 21, 2017, in Tacoma.
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    A detainee sits in the intake area at the Northwest Detention Center on Wednesday, June 21, 2017, in Tacoma.
    KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

    Sen. Patty Murray has set her sights on the detention facility in Tacoma and has urged Homeland Security officials to investigate its conditions and policies.

    "I have been very frustrated by recent reports on the overuse of isolation from the general population at ICE facilities — including at the Northwest ICE Processing Center in Tacoma," Sen. Murray said Wednesday, during a Senate Appropriations Homeland Security subcommittee meeting Monday.

    RELATED: WA plans to reduce solitary confinement, advocates say reforms are long overdue

    Sen. Murray's comments were directed at Dept. of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, who was brought into the hearing during budget discussions. She cited University of Washington research that concluded half of ICE's 10 longest administrative segregations (solitary confinement) over the past five years were at the Northwest Detention Center, a privately run facility in Tacoma.

    "And I want to stress how concerning it is that ICE continues to use this practice so frequently for so many individuals and reportedly does so without consistent, accurate documentation of its use," Murray said.

    Mayorkas said he is reviewing the issue with ICE, that "it’s a very case specific issue," and noted that sometimes the separations are requested by the detainees for safety reasons. He also said he would be "very pleased to consider" an investigation.

    Sen. Murray's office highlighted the exchange in a press release shortly after the meeting.

    This is not the first time Mayorkas has heard of this issue from the senator. Murray, and other lawmakers, sent a letter in early April, following the death of a detainee in Tacoma by suicide, who was separated and placed in solitary confinement. More recently, the Washington State Standard reported that in less than three months this year, there have been at least six suicide attempts at the Tacoma site.

    RELATED: State regulators denied access to privately run ICE detention center in Tacoma

    Previously, Murray's office has noted a report that found solitary confinement was used at ICE facilities more than 14,000 times between 2018 and 2023. The instances averaged 27 days.

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  • Paraeducators strike in Port Angeles. But can strapped school districts afford to pay them more?

    caption: The Port Angeles School District's 135 paraprofessionals have been on strike for four days.
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    The Port Angeles School District's 135 paraprofessionals have been on strike for four days.
    Courtesy of Port Angeles Paraeducators Association

    The Port Angeles School District's more than 3,500 students are getting an extended spring break, as schools remained closed this week because of a paraeducator strike.

    The strike on Washington's Olympic Peninsula is a sign of the budget challenges many school districts across the state and nation are facing.

    Rebecca Winters has been a paraeducator in Port Angeles for 20 years, and has been president of their union for five. She loves her job supporting students with disabilities in the classroom.

    But it's not always easy — Winters has been kicked and spit on throughout her career, as she's tried to ensure struggling students are learning.

    "A big part of our day is taking on a lot of aggression, a lot of sadness, a lot of anger from students," she said, "and finding creative ways to get them reengaged."

    RELATED: In southwest Washington, educator strikes stall the start of school

    The pay isn't great, either. On average, Washington paraeducators make between $22 and $27 per hour, according to the Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction.

    Winters says many of her colleagues get second or third jobs to make ends meet, and that's why they're asking for a 3.7% cost-of-living raise.

    "That is in place of dinner time with their family, it's during their weekends, so they don't have any breaks and time to rest," she said.

    Continue reading »
  • Seattle has 2 new parks, but they don't have names. Any ideas?

    Seattle green lake park
    Enlarge Icon

    Seattle is slated to get two new parks. But they don't have names yet. Maybe you can fix that.

    The city of Seattle acquires various plots of land over the years that it now wants to turn into public parks.

    RELATED: After years of waiting, Seattle is getting two new dog parks. They each cost more than $1 million

    For example, in the North Rainier neighborhood (South Charlestown Street between 34th and 35th Avenues South), Seattle bought a parcel in 2011, then another in 2016, and another in 2021. It's putting these together to make new park space. The Parks and Recreation Department hasn't said much about plans for this site, but has said that "impervious surfacing," aka concrete or asphalt, will be limited to 15% of the site. It also mentions "trail and circulation surfaces."

    The other location is in the South Park neighborhood (8456 Dallas Avenue South). The city purchased this .83 acres at the South Park River Walk in 2014. The Parks and Recreation Department says plans are being finalized, but so far they're aiming for an event space, play spaces for kids, seating, an open lawn area, and bioswales (giant rain garden-like features that filter pollution).

    • Suggest a name for the North Rainier site here.
    • Suggest a name for the South Park site here.

    Name suggestions for the parks are due by Friday, May 31, 2024. A naming committee will take on the selection process.

    RELATED: The love story that grew Seattle's 'secret garden'

    The committee will have three members, selected by the Parks and Rec board, the City Council's parks committee, and the Seattle Parks and Recreation superintendent. They'll take into account names with geological features, historical or cultural significance, and location. Parks Superintendent A.P. Diaz will make the final name decision.

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  • Molbak's back from the dead in Woodinville

    While Molbak's Garden and Home store may have recently shut down, owners now say it will bloom again in Woodinville. However, the fruits of its labor will be a bit different.

    Goodbye home and garden store. Hello Green Phoenix Collaborative at Molbak's. But to make it happen, the collaborative is asking for Molbak's fans to pitch in some funding.

    "Green Phoenix Collaborative will transform our long-time home into a transformational community hub for all things gardening, green, and climate-friendly," the collaborative's website states. "There will be a wide range of programs, classes, and events and lots of different ways for people to get involved."

    RELATED: Spring 2024 gardening will be a bit different. Ciscoe Morris has a few tips

    Molbak's Garden and Home store first set up shop in 1956. Woodinville grew up around it. In recent years, the family-run store collaborated with a developer to reimagine the downtown area, but in late 2023, a drama emerged between the two parties. Molbak's alleged they were kicked out of the project. The developer said otherwise. Each party pointed green thumbs of blame at each other. Molbak's ultimately decided to close up shop.

    Now, about two months after it closed, Molbak's officials say the business will evolve into a new operation.

    The Green Phoenix Collaborative at Molbak's is essentially a community gathering space centered on gardening and related themes. Organizers say this new endeavor will be "built on the heritage of Molbak’s," however, the approach will be different. The operation will have five areas of focus: products, services, education, inspiration, and innovation.

    This means the property will host pop-up stores for gardening products and plants; seasonal farmers markets and festivals; a community garden; classes and workshops; programs for kids; space to sample local wines, beers, and food. They also plan to produce podcasts and online classes. Molbak's says it plans to be at the same property "for the next few years."

    To do all this, the collective is asking for contributions. It aims to raise $2.5 million by May 9. Its Indiegogo campaign states that if 10% of Molbak's customer base contributes $125, they can reach their goal.

    If they fail to reach their goal, all money will be returned to folks who pitched in. The collective says it's already put $1 million to "pre-seed Green Phoenix Collaborative." It wants more funding to hire workers and fund its programming.

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  • Money coach has a few thoughts about living in expensive Seattle

    caption: As the cost of living in the Seattle area rises, and the search for affordability continues, a financial coach tells KUOW's Seattle Now that budgeting and money are relative to each individual.
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    As the cost of living in the Seattle area rises, and the search for affordability continues, a financial coach tells KUOW's Seattle Now that budgeting and money are relative to each individual.

    Seattle is expensive. That's no secret. But to many people, the concept of money and how to manage it feels like a big secret. That's a perception that Suzanne Klenk aims to change.

    “I’m an impulse spender, which is rough for a financial coach, but I’m in therapy, so it’s OK," Klenk told Seattle Now.

    RELATED: You need to earn how much for a 'starter home' in Seattle?!

    Klenk is a financial coach and educator* who works at the Washington State Employees Credit Union, a nonprofit open to anyone living or working in the state. She offered Seattle Now a few money management pointers, drawn from common conversations she has with people (read more about that below).

    “I think the number one misconception about money is that everybody else has it and you don’t, or that people around you are handling their money differently than you are and are therefore more successful," she said. "I think that comes from social media [and] the way we are raised. We are not raised to talk about money. We know more about Snooki’s boyfriend from the East Coast than we do about our own finances.”

    Still, it's difficult to live in a region like the Seattle area and not have money on the mind, from housing costs, to food prices, and other aspects of affordability. The region has recently grappled with high inflation that exceeds the national average. In fact, over the past four years, average Seattle-area inflation has only dipped below the national average twice and the gap has widened in the past two years.

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  • Can you name Washington's next big apple? Contest is open

    caption: WA-64 is an apple variety developed by Washington State University. It started developing the apple in 1998 and filed for a patent in 2022. WSU expects the apple to be ready for store shelves in 2029.
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    WA-64 is an apple variety developed by Washington State University. It started developing the apple in 1998 and filed for a patent in 2022. WSU expects the apple to be ready for store shelves in 2029.

    Not since the Cosmic Crisp hit grocery shelves has Washington's apple scene had such a commotion. The state's next new apple is ready for a name, and Washington State University is asking for suggestions.

    Washington State University is now holding a contest to come up with a name for this new, pink-blushed variety. The name will be trademarked.

    Let's just get "Apple McAppleFace" out of the way right now (you know someone is going to suggest it).

    RELATED: Last season was harsh on Washington cherry growers. The USDA is offering help

    There are a few rules around naming the apple. No swearing or offensive language. No existing trademarks. You can't make references to illegal substances or activities. And you can't mention the other apples it is blended with (Honeycrisp and Cripps Pink). Also, any name drawn from Washington or WSU, or the apple's characteristics, will be given priority.

    You have to be 18 or older and you can only submit one name. So make it a good one. You have until May 5 to submit your suggested apple name.

    "We hope that folks are excited about the apple, even though they can't taste it or buy it for several years," said Jeremy Tamsen, Washington State University's director of innovation and commercialization, while talking with KUOW in 2023. "We're interested in getting input ... so we can find a name that really hits a home run with this apple."

    If WSU does pick the name you suggest, you basically agree to hand it over, royalty free. But you won't walk away empty handed. You'll get a charcuterie board, Cougar Gold Cheese, WSU spices, coffee cup, and a water bottle. They'll also throw in a box of apples.

    RELATED: At 75, Cougar Gold canned cheese is still a Washington state favorite

    So far this apple has been referred to as "WA-64," which is not snazzy enough for store shelves. (Hey, "Snazzy" is not a bad name. "Honey, can you pick up some Snazzys at the store?")

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  • Not in my valley. Some San Juan Islanders say no to solar power

    caption: An aerial depiction of a proposed solar power and battery-storage project on San Juan Island, Washington.
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    An aerial depiction of a proposed solar power and battery-storage project on San Juan Island, Washington.

    On the San Juan Islands, most power comes from the Washington state mainland, by way of two underwater cables that are already nearing their limits as demand for electricity keeps growing.

    The local electric utility wants to cover a pasture near the town of Friday Harbor with 5,200 solar panels to help San Juan Island avoid blackouts.

    Officials with Orcas Power & Light Cooperative say the $13 million project would more than double San Juan County’s energy production, while its battery storage would smooth out the availability of power from intermittent sunshine. The 2.5-megawatt solar array would be big enough to power about 2,000 homes.

    Some opponents of the project along the San Juan Island Scenic Byway say they welcome solar power, but not on San Juan Valley farmland preserved as open space.

    RELATED: A new solar energy deal will bring power to 140,000 homes and businesses in 3 states

    At a public meeting on the project, Foster Hildreth, general manager for Orcas Power & Light, said business as usual is “no longer available” for the island utility.

    “Population growth, electrification of ferries, electrification of heating and transportation: All those are big loads that are by 2030 expected to basically [create] 50% more electricity need than ever before,” Hildreth said.

    The utility calls the project “agri-solar” since sheep could still graze beneath the rows of solar panels, each panel swiveling on stilts to track the sun.

    Utilities around the U.S. are facing local pushback as they build wind farms, solar arrays, and transmission lines to help the nation wean itself from fossil fuels and fight climate change.

    Controversy over the project on San Juan Island was first reported by the Salish Current.

    Former San Juan County Councilmember and planner Darcie Nielsen says she’s 100% on board with clean energy, but not at the planned location about 2 miles south of Friday Harbor in the San Juan Valley.

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