PNS Daily Newscast - March 22, 2018 

New research finds stiffer prison terms do not deter drug use. Also on our nationwide rundown: We take you to a state where 4 in 10 adults have guns; and “ghost” fishing gear is killing whales and seals in oceans.

Daily Newscasts

Public News Service - OR: Environment

The Pacific Northwest is preparing itself for the big one  a Cascadia Subduction Zone earthquake that could devastate the region. (USGS/Wikimedia Commons)

PORTLAND, Ore. – The scene starts with the ground shaking violently. By the end, there's mass pandemonium. Disaster movies frequently depict earthquakes and the devastation a big one could bring. But do they contribute to an irrational fear? A poll of 1,100 people from the website Sperling's

An Oregon fishing guide says fishers worry about the effects of ethanol on their outboard motors. (Michelle B./Flickr)

PORTLAND, Ore. – A bill to reform the biofuels mandate could reverse a decade of destruction to America's grasslands, according to environmental groups. The GREENER Fuels Act would gradually reduce the amount of biofuels such as corn ethanol in the nation's fuel supply. It also would stop

Nearly 64 percent of bottled water comes from municipal taps, according to a new report. (Steven Depolo/Flickr)

PORTLAND, Ore. – Sales are skyrocketing for the bottled water industry, but what are companies actually selling to customers? In its new report "Take Back the Tap," Food and Water Watch researchers look at the booming business of bottled water, which surpassed soda in sales in 2016. The grou

Oregon's U.S. senators have criticized the Interior Department's proposed changes the sage-grouse conservation plan. (Nick Myatt/Oregon Dept. of Fish and Wildlife)

PORTLAND, Ore. – The Interior Department is expected to announce its decision soon on the fate of the sage grouse conservation plan, which spans Oregon and 10 other western states. Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke says his agency is re-examining the plan to see if it hinders energy development,

Oregon communities could start to feel the effects of ocean acidification if climate change isn't curbed, scientists say. (Plumbago/Flickr)

PORTLAND, Ore. – Will the Trump administration's erasure of climate change references have consequences for the nation? A former government scientist says unequivocally yes. Rick Spinrad, former chief scientist at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), says language is

Oregon has set a goal of reducing carbon emissions 80 percent below 1990 levels by the year 2050. (

SALEM, Ore. -- Will 2018 be the year Oregon legislators set a cap on carbon emissions? State lawmakers have been working out the details of a cap-and-trade program and expect to introduce a draft bill on January 8, one month before this year's session. The aim is to reduce the carbon emissions cap

Bonneville Dam is one of many in the Columbia River basin. (Colleen Benelli/Flickr)

PORTLAND, Ore. – Columbia River Treaty negotiations between the United States and Canada are set to begin in 2018, and advocates for the environment say the river's health should be the focus of talks. Conversation, fishing and faith-based groups, as well as tribes in the Columbia River basi

Eastern Pacific leatherback sea turtle populations on the West Coast have decreased by more than 97 percent in the last three generations. (Bernard Dupont/Wikimedia Commons)

PORTLAND, Ore. – A new report highlights the ways politics are jeopardizing endangered animals and plants. In "Suppressed: How Politics Drowned Out Science for Ten Endangered Species," the Endangered Species Coalition and its partners say scientific guidance is going by the wayside under the

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