Sightline Daily top picks 04/28/2009

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Sightline Daily | Northwest News That Matters

Top Picks of the Day

1. Mayor pushes to make Vancouver world’s greenest city

A green advisory team launched by Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson earlier this year has proposed a number of measures – such as encouraging people to drink tap water and grow local food – to turn the city into the world’s greenest by 2020. Vancouver Sun 04/28/2009
2. Judge urged to drop WR Grace asbestos case

Prosecutors in the W.R. Grace & Co. trial on Monday dropped charges against one defendant, while a federal district judge entertained defense arguments to jettison the environmental crimes case altogether due to prosecutorial misconduct. Missoulian 04/28/2009
3. Oregon’s climate change bill gets a downgrade

The latest legislative effort to require utilities, transportation and industry to meet Oregon’s greenhouse gas reduction goals would let state agencies abandon the goals if they’re considered not “economically feasible.” From an environmental standpoint, that’s a big downgrade from an earlier version of Senate Bill 80, the centerpiece of Gov. Ted Kulongoski’s plan to address global warming. Oregonian 04/28/2009
4. Idaho gravel mine may endanger Salmon River

Two environmental groups urged state and federal agencies to investigate gravel mining operations within the Salmon River channel, calling on the Environmental Protection Agency, NOAA-Fisheries and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to investigate potential violations of the Clean Water Act and Endangered Species Act. Boise Idaho Statesman 04/27/2009
5. Stimulus money pays Oregon teens for parks upkeep

The first surge of federal stimulus money is hitting some of the emptiest pockets on the planet. Starting immediately and extending through next summer, nearly 2,000 Oregon teens will be employed at minimum wage of $8.40 per hour for clearing trails, digging out invasive species and cleaning up parks and recreation areas. Oregonian 04/28/2009
6. Montana CHIP will not pay for birth control

Montana is one of only five states that forbids the Children’s Health Insurance Program from paying for birth-control products – and, as part of the budget deal struck by lawmakers over the weekend, that ban will remain intact. Sen. John Brueggeman, R-Polson, this month inserted language into a pair of budget bills to allow CHIP to start paying for contraception for teenage children covered by the government insurance program. Missoulian 04/28/2009
7. Split votes could mean more logging in Oregon

Tuesday, state lawmakers are scheduled to debate a bill to change how state forests are valued. Last week, the chairman of the state Forestry Board told lawmakers that the Oregon Board of Forestry was opposed to the legislation, by a vote of 4-to-1. Interestingly, that 4-to-1 vote was a major policy change in-and-of-itself. Oregon Public Broadcasting 04/28/2009
8. Study: Gender pay gap shrinks among gov’t workers

Women working in the federal government still earn less than their male counterparts, but the pay gap is shrinking. The difference between average annual salary for men and women in the federal work force declined from 19 cents to 11 cents on the dollar between 1998 and 2007, according to a draft report from the Government Accountability Office. Seattle Times 04/28/2009
9. Clinton says US is ready to lead on climate

After eight years largely on the sidelines of the international policy debate on climate change, the United States is prepared to lead negotiations toward a new global warming treaty, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton said Monday. New York Times 04/27/2009

10. Fish and Wildlife to study a stealthy amphibian
Jeremy Nichols says he became smitten by the Tehachapi slender salamander when he ran across an article about it four years ago in a book about North American reptiles and amphibians. Nichols, acting as a private citizen, filed a petition in 2006 requesting that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service list the salamander as an endangered species because of ongoing threats to its subterranean haunts. Los Angeles Times 04/28/2009

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