DNR “spread thin”, calls for robust funding

DNR “spread thin”, calls for robust funding

After another intense wildfire season that involved flames on both sides of the Cascades and poor air quality statewide, Commissioner of Public Lands Hilary...
Whale task force may punt on dams

Whale task force may punt on dams

The Southern Resident Killer Whale Recovery Task Force created by Governor Jay Inslee has released a draft report of recommendations on how to aid...
Will higher rec fees fly?

Will higher rec fees fly?

A proposal by the Fish and Wildlife Commission would raise recreational fees for activities such as fishing and hunting by 15 percent to help...
Lower temps cool wildfire season

Lower temps cool wildfire season

After weeks of hot temperatures and statewide smoke cover, decreasing temperatures and recent rainfall indicate the worst of this year’s wildfire season is over....
The “burn ‘em” strategy to improve Washington’s forests

The “burn ‘em” strategy to improve Washington’s forests

The apocalyptic-like smokescreen shrouding most of Washington earlier this month may ultimately make the best case on behalf of the state Department of Natural...
Mount Rainier

Bolstering Washington tourism

Washington state is reenergizing its statewide tourism efforts with the approval of a statewide tourism agency in March, however it has a way to...
Fighting fire with fire

Fighting fire with fire

Washington experienced yet another weekend surge of new wildfires that continue to blanket large portions of the state in wildfire smoke. In central Washington,...
Wildfires lead to hazardous air conditions

Wildfires lead to hazardous air conditions

Washington’s wildfire season has ramped up with lighting strikes, hot temperatures and significant drought causing dozens of fires over the weekend. The conditions have...
Fish and Wildlife pause on fee hikes

Fish and Wildlife pause on fee hikes

Fear of backlash by outdoor recreational enthusiasts forced to pay higher fishing and hunting fees led the Washington Fish and Wildlife Commission to pause...
Washington wildfire season intensifies

Washington wildfire season intensifies

The state Department of Natural Resources (DNR) has responded to nearly 900 wildfires so far this season. Already, that is more than the total...
Cross-laminated timber as forest-management strategy

Cross-laminated timber as forest-management strategy

The state legislature earlier this year called on the Washington State Building Code Council (WSBCC) to adopt rules for cross-laminated timber (CLT) use when...
Why Washington outdoor enthusiasts may get a fee hike

Why Washington outdoor enthusiasts may get a fee hike

The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) needs around $30 million to cover a shortfall for the 2019-21 biennium, and recreational enthusiasts who...
Washington's 2018 wildfire seasonvideo

Video: Washington’s 2018 wildfire season

Lens looks at several wildfires that Washington firefighters have fought so far this season, including the Ryegrass Coulee Fire and the Little Camas Fire.
Washington’s firefighters face flames near and far

Washington’s firefighters face flames near and far

Washington firefighters in the past week were able to successfully combat several wildfires, including one that threatened the small community of Vantage near the...
Foresters weigh in on fish barrier removal

Foresters weigh in on fish barrier removal

A recent split decision by the U.S. Supreme Court calls on Washington state to remove thousands of fish barriers impeding salmon passage by 2030. Forest landowners say...
Wildfires hit Washington communities

Wildfires hit Washington communities

In less than a month, two wildfires have threatened a small Central Washington community and prompted level three evacuations for all residents as 250...
New wildfire strategies paying off

New wildfire strategies paying off

In recent years, Washington’s firefighting agencies have worked to improve the initial response to wildfires as part of an overall strategy toward reducing the...
Supreme Court sides with tribes in culvert ruling

Supreme Court sides with tribes in culvert ruling

In a split decision, the United States Supreme Court has upheld a lower court ruling ordering Washington state to remove fish barriers that local...
video

Lens Video: Washington prepares for wildfire season

Lens was on site at a controlled burn May 16 outside of Yakima as part of the state Department of Natural Resources' interagency wildfire...
Trial by fire: State prepares for wildfire season

Trial by fire: State prepares for wildfire season

In recent years, prescribed burning has regained popularity as a one way for state and federal agencies to restore the millions of acres of...
Congress may decide fate of the lower Snake River dams

Congress may decide fate of the lower Snake River dams

A U.S. House resolution backed by three Washington Republican lawmakers protecting the lower Snake River dams from breaching to improve endangered salmon species populations...
First GMA appeal under new Hirst law

First GMA appeal under new Hirst law

Earlier this year state lawmakers and Governor Jay Inslee approved a law addressing rural growth restrictions imposed by the State Supreme Court’s 2016 Hirst...
High stakes in fish barrier ruling

High stakes in fish barrier ruling

Under consideration by the U.S. Supreme Court is a case between Washington state and Native American tribes concerning treaty fishing rights and the removal...
Pacific Salmon population explosion

Pacific Salmon population explosion

As Washington stakeholders and policymakers explore ways to increase the state’s population of certain salmon protected as endangered species under federal law, the Pacific...
Treading lightly on “no man’s land”

Treading lightly on “no man’s land”

The state Wildland Fire Advisory Committee isn’t wasting any time thinking of ways to combat wildfires in areas outside of any jurisdiction, also known...
Wildfires in “no man’s land”

Wildfires in “no man’s land”

Outside the jurisdiction of Washington’s 417 fire departments and fire stations are regions of the state known as “no man’s land”; territory where no...
Central Washington Sceneryvideo

Lens Video: Revitalizing Washington’s tourism program

Lens sat down with State Rep. Cary Condotta (R-12) to discuss the future of tourism in Washington state. Lawmakers are pushing to reopen a...
Empire Unmanned's Brock LIpple launching an eBee UAV/drone

Drones on the rise in agriculture

Agriculture’s most helpful tool may be flying over farmers’ heads. The use of drone technology is on the rise in agriculture, which assists the...
Lake Chelan

Revitalizing statewide tourism efforts

Two state lawmakers from central Washington are expressing the need for statewide tourism marketing, as they say Washington is overshadowed by other states’ efforts....
Windmill in plains

Utility regulatory change could add flexibility

Utility stakeholders and lawmakers are throwing their support behind a proposal which would allow additional regulatory options for electrical and natural gas companies. Proponents...
Snoqualmie Falls shot

Tourism bill garners strong support

House lawmakers on Feb. 20 heard public comment on a bill which would establish a statewide tourism agency that proponents say would fill the...
prescribed-burn-resources

“Burn bosses” would turn up the heat

It’s an idea befitting a scene in a sequel to Planes: Fire & Rescue – a program to train prescribed burn project managers, a.k.a:...
People preparing to hike up Mount Rainier

Stakeholders say tourism bill needs another lead authority

Tourism agency representatives are finding fault with the lead agency listed in a House bill that would establish a statewide agency for managing tourism...
Well in a garden

Hirst fix update: Water bill becomes law

After 18 months of stakeholder meetings and debate, the Washington State Legislature passed and Governor Jay Inslee signed into law a bill to address...
Top of Granite Mountain

Tourism bill draws strong support

Washington is the only state in the country without a dedicated statewide tourism agency – and this has been the case since 2011. To address...
Washington River

House Hirst bill may provide needed clarification

State lawmakers are hearing from building industry representatives and other stakeholders on a bill which aims to address the ongoing implications of the 2016...
old water well

Hirst bill kicks off session water use talks

As legislators embark on the 2018 session, one of the first committee meetings saw introduction of a proposal to address negative effects stemming from...
Nearly half a billion spent fighting Washington wildfires since 2010

Nearly half a billion spent fighting Washington wildfires since 2010

Between 2010-2016, the State Department of Natural Resources (DNR) and the Office of the State Fire Marshall spent nearly half a billion responding to...
Apples in barrels at an orchard

Washington apple growers may regain Indonesia trade access

U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) Robert Lighthizer this month reaffirmed that Indonesian import licensing regulations for horticultural and animal products violated World Trade Organization (WTO)...
Lighthouse at the San Juan Islands

Washington tourism agencies prepare for the winter decline

As the winter months approach, Washington tourism agencies are implementing different campaigns and marketing strategies to keep travelers coming to visit state attractions. Strategies...
Combine Harvesting Wheat

Washington wheat growers weigh in on NAFTA, South Korean trade agreement

As North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) negotiations continue, the Washington wheat industry is sharing its concerns and hopes for a revamped contract. The...
DNR releases 20-year forest health plan

DNR releases 20-year forest health plan

If Washingtonians think wildfires are bad now, things could get even worse for future generations. According to predictions, the Pacific Northwest could lose four...
Northwest dairy shares its unique stake in NAFTA

Northwest dairy shares its unique stake in NAFTA

As the U.S., Canada and Mexico prepare to enter the third round of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) discussions at the end...

WWU study highlights economic benefits of agribusiness in Whatcom County

As a recent Western Washington University (WWU) study highlights the benefits of agriculture to Whatcom County businesses, one of the study’s authors as well...

Forest management of Suncadia resort pays dividends during Jolly Mountain Fire

The Jolly Mountain Fire near Roslyn and Cle Elum is one of many ongoing wildfires ravaging central and eastern Washington. So far, the lightning-caused...

Washington’s agricultural industry weighs in on second round of NAFTA reworks

As the second round of discussions regarding changes to the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) wrap up this week, U.S. and Washington representatives...

Wildfire smoke hasn’t tainted this year’s grape harvest – yet

Washington wine lovers will be pleased to know that the wildfire smoke inundating the skies and reducing air quality over much of the state...
Enhanced weather technology proves useful in fighting wildfires

Enhanced weather technology proves useful in fighting wildfires

As this year’s relatively mild wildfire season tapers down, state lawmakers and Washington Department of Natural Resources (DNR) officials may consider the benefits of...
Washington’s agricultural stakeholders voice concerns over NAFTA revamp discussions

Washington’s agricultural stakeholders voice concerns over NAFTA revamp discussions

Discussions to revamp the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) begin in one week, and Washington’s agricultural stakeholders are voicing concerns and offering suggestions...

Washington foresters: Hirst solution worth delay of wildfire-related projects

The failed passage of a capital budget during the legislative session could postpone many forest health restoration projects planned by the Washington Department of...

Lawmakers Skeptical They Can Agree On A Hirst Fix Before Session Ends

As the Washington state legislature enters the last day of its third special session, lawmakers are doubtful that a Hirst fix will be agreed...
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