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News Briefs

When a ship from Royal Dutch Shell oil company sailed into Portland the morning of July 25 to repair damages sustained while breaking ice in the Aleutian Islands, environmental activists with the #sHellNo movement were there to greet it.

• ODOT is currently spraying roadsides. Call Tony Kilmer at ODOT District 5 at 744-8080 or call (888) 996-8080 for often inaccurate herbicide application information. I-5 was recently sprayed.

• Joanna Lovera, 206-8827, plans to hire Oregon Forest Management Services to spray 46.6 acres south of Fox Hollow Road near Murdoch Road with Glyphos X-TRA, Polaris SP, Oust Extra and Opensight. See ODF notification 2015-781-09139, call Brian Peterson at 935-2283 with questions.

The Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) is accepting comments through 5 pm Tuesday, Aug. 4 on an application from Hayden Homes for Clean Water Act permitting of discharges of construction-related stormwater pollution from Phase 1 of Rolling Meadows, a 39-lot residential development located at 10th Avenue and Oklea Drive in Junction City. Visit goo.gl/Yp4iAK for info on commenting.

Americans tend to have our heads in the sand when it comes to climate change, but we are not alone in the world. Even in Norway, where snows are coming two months later, and where there is no organized and well-funded disinformation campaign, most Norwegians just shrug and go about their business. What’s going on?

• ODOT is currently spraying roadsides. Call Tony Kilmer at ODOT District 5 at 744-8080 or call (888) 996-8080 for often inaccurate herbicide application information. Highways recently sprayed include I-5, 36, 99 and Beltline.

• Weyerhaeuser, 744-4600, plans to helicopter and backpack spray 5.8 acres near Taylor Butte south of Cottage Grove with glyphosate, imazapyr, triclopyr, metsulfuron methyl, sulfometuron methyl, MSO Concentrate, Crosshair and/or No Foam. See ODF notification 2015-771-10308, call Tim Meehan at 726-3588 with questions.

If you hadn’t heard about the Cascadia Subduction Zone mega earthquake before now, the recent New Yorker article titled “The Really Big One” has probably popped up on your social media feed enough times to draw your attention.

Some people have known for decades about the predicted 9.0-magnitude earthquake and subsequent tsunami threatening to devastate the Oregon Coast and beyond. 

A fenced-in parking lot complete with stripes on the gravel has appeared at the site of the leveled City Hall downtown, leading passers-by to wonder what’s going on. Turns out the parking will not be for the public or even the architects and engineers working on plans for the new City Hall.

“We had a request from the Federal Courthouse to accommodate overflow parking for jurors for two weeks,” says city spokesperson Laura Hammond. City Code 9.5800 “allows up to two weeks of temporary parking three times per year,” she says.

“Business has been booming,” says Jody Maddox, who owns Wags Dog Emporium off Coburg Road. This is no surprise, based on the $58.51 billion the American Pet Products Association (APPA) estimates Americans spent on their pets in 2014. 

Oregon happens to be near the top of the list for pet-owning states and ranks fourth overall, according to the American Veterinary Medical Foundation’s 2012 survey numbers, and those high ownership numbers seems to have translated to good business for pet-related industries operating in Eugene and Oregon in general.

The Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) is accepting comments through 5 pm  Tuesday, July 28, on two proposed Clean Water Act permit modifications for Georgia-Pacific Consumer Products and Cascade Pacific Pulp, which both discharge pollution to the Willamette River via the same outfall near Halsey. The proposed modifications involve the relocation of the outfall approximately 1,300 feet downstream, and a decrease in the size of the “mixing zone” for the discharges.

Eugene 350’s Summer Meetup will be from 7 to 8:30 pm Thursday, July 16, at First United Methodist Church, 1376 Olive Street. On the agenda is campaign organizing and arts projects, including giant banners and “Puppets for Climate Change.” Actions are being planned leading up to the U.N. climate talks in Paris. Email 350eugene@riseup.net or call 343-5091.

As fire season heats up in Oregon and across the West, debates over logging and forestry are staying hot in Congress. The House just passed HR 2647, the Resilient Federal Forests Act of 2015, and Congressman Peter DeFazio is one of the Democrats who voted in favor of the bill.

• ODOT is currently spraying roadsides. Call Tony Kilmer at ODOT District 5 at 744-8080 or call (888) 996-8080 for often inaccurate herbicide application information. Highways recently sprayed include I-5, 36, 99 and Beltline.

If Jacob Burris, an eighth grader at Shasta Middle School, and his parents hadn’t followed up on a high blood pressure reading at a routine checkup, doctors may never have detected the life-threatening heart condition that sent the 13-year-old to OHSU Doernbecher Children’s Hospital in Portland last year. 

Now, because of his time at Doernbecher, Jacob is designing his own shoe at Nike as part of a fundraiser for the children’s hospital.

The Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) is accepting comments through 5 pm on Tuesday, July 21, on the proposed “biosolids” management plan for Premier RV Resorts. (“Biosolids” is a term for treated sewage sludge.) Premier RV Resorts is located near Coburg, southeast of exit 199 on I-5. The plan includes requirements for spreading biosolids on farm land south of the RV resort. Visit goo.gl/ott3SM for more information on commenting.

The Veterans Safe Spot, one of three “rest stops” managed by Community Supported Shelters (CSS), is moving from its current location at Chambers and Northwest Expressway to a 7.5-acre Eugene Mission property off West 1st Avenue. Ron Siever, a veteran at the safe spot, says he and other veterans are concerned about the new rules required to move onto Mission property, which include total sobriety, abstinence from drugs and no pets.

Paying for community college may get a little easier now that Senate Bill 81 has passed in the Oregon Legislature, but community college officials say it’s more of a step in the right direction than a miracle cure for students’ financial woes. While this bill, called a “last dollar” program, provides assistance in the form of filling in tuition gaps that other grants leave, heftier legislation in the form of a “first dollar” program is needed for community college tuition to truly be “free.”

The loss of Civic Stadium to a fast-burning fire June 29 is tragic to those who tried to save it and to those who have rich memories of the historic stadium. But, as Eugene Springfield Fire Operations Deputy Chief Joe Zaludek pointed out at a recent press conference, no one was injured in the fire or fighting it, which he called “amazing” for an incident of this magnitude. 

• Oregon Department of Transportation is currently spraying roadsides. Call Tony Kilmer at ODOT District 5 at 744-8080 or call (888) 996-8080 for often inaccurate herbicide application information. Highways recently sprayed include I-5, 36, 105, 126, Beltline and Territorial.

The Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) fined Arclin U.S.A. $5,200 last month for illegally discharging pollution to waters of the state early last year from its formaldehyde and formaldehyde-based resin manufacturing facility near 28th and Main in Springfield. Arclin’s discharges were low-pH and high in biochemical oxygen demand, with BOD levels as high as 203 percent of the limit in Arclin’s Clean Water Act permit.

The Fourth of July weekend’s shake and bake of high temperatures and a small earthquake may have caused some short-term fear and consternation, but both events are linked to longer-term causes.

On July 2, temperatures at the Eugene airport were a record setting 101 degrees, and temperatures hovered in the 90s through much of the holiday weekend. Then, many of those who managed to sleep late despite the heat were woken at 8:42 am July 4 by a 4.2 magnitude earthquake centered 9 miles east-northeast of Springfield.

Oregon’s seven public universities enter a new era this July: No more Oregon University System, no more Board of Higher Education and no more OUS chancellor. 

Instead Oregon state universities will be run by their own independent governing boards, as pioneered by the University of Oregon, Portland State and Oregon State University. Senate Bill 80, passed by both houses (not yet signed by governor as of this writing) will legally abolish the OUS.  

• The Lane County Metropolitan Policy Committee meets from 11:30 am to 12:30 pm Thursday, July 2, at Coburg City Hall Council Chambers. On the agenda is the Metropolitan Cable Television Commission. Contact Paul Thompson at 682-4405.

• The VA Roseburg Healthcare System has scheduled a town hall from 4:30 to 6:30 pm Thursday, July 2, at the Elks Lodge, 1701 Centennial Blvd. in Springfield. VA representatives will be available to answer questions and assist vets with current claims or filing new claims for disability compensation. 

A recent study shows that, for the first time in U.S. history, obese Americans outnumber merely overweight Americans. Head over to the city of Eugene’s Petersen Barn Community Center this summer to buck this trend through martial arts or dance.

If you only sign up for one of Petersen Barn’s multitude of classes — ballet, belly dance, fencing, yoga — martial-arts instructor Logan Flores wants you to take his class, “Kung Fu Lessons in Harmony.”