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News Briefs

Eugene plays host to endless wine tastings and brew fests — now it’s time for distilleries to take the spotlight. The Hard Times Distillery Expo, featuring 17 Oregon distillers, takes place Saturday, Aug. 15, at the Hult Center. 

Oregon native bees now have a special day of their own. Gov. Kate Brown, at the urging of local nonprofit Beyond Toxics, has declared Aug. 15, 2015, as Oregon Native Bees Conservation Awareness Day. 

People should care about the welfare of bees, says Beyond Toxics Executive Director Lisa Arkin. Without bees, crops would have to be pollinated by hand, she says.

After working on The Beer Bible for nearly two years, author and beer writer Jeff Alworth says he gained a newfound appreciation for all kinds of beers, not just his old favorites.

“I had definite preferences before I started the book, but by the time I finished, it felt like they were my children, and I loved them equally,” he says, laughing. 

Alworth is visiting Eugene on Aug. 15 to promote The Beer Bible, a dizzyingly comprehensive guide to all things beer. 

Eleven youths from Oregon have joined with 10 other kids from across the country and with future generations of children to file a lawsuit that attorney Julia Olson says will challenge the U.S. government and ask the federal court system to make a decision as important as Brown v. Board of Education (racial equality) or Obergefell v. Hodges (marriage equality).

Oregon Department of Transportation is currently spraying roadsides. Call Tony Kilmer at ODOT District 5 at 744-8080 for herbicide application information.

M Three Timber Co., 767-3785, plans to hire Western Helicopter Services, Inc., 503-538-9469, to spray 74.4 acres, 1 unit north of Cottage Grove-Lorane Rd and 1 unit near Muslin Creek with Chopper Gen2, Accord Concentrate, Oust Extra, Induce and/or Compadre. See ODF notification 2015-781-11328, call Brian Peterson at 935-2283 with questions.

This summer marks the 20th anniversary of the fight to protect Warner Creek from a salvage-logging project that the Forest Service sought to institute after an arsonist lit up 9,000 acres in the Willamette National Forest. The forest was torched in 1991, and the arson was followed by several years of activism to keep the spotted owl habitat from being logged.

Hedin Brugh, one of three protesters charged with trespassing during a Safe Legally Entitled Emergency Places to Sleep (SLEEPS) protest at the Wayne Morse Free Speech Plaza in 2013, had his charge dismissed by the city of Eugene on July 24. 

The private Italian spying firm Hacking Team was itself recently hacked and some of its internal documents, invoices, emails and customer lists were made public — the information can be found on WikiLeaks. According to Wired not only has the FBI used Hacking Team’s wares, “many of the other governments who bought the same software are repressive regimes, such as Sudan and Bahrain.” 

Trash continues to pile up along the Willamette River this summer, mostly from homeless campers but also from local residents recreating on the river and careless anglers. Action is being taken, but it appears to be mostly by volunteers, and more help is needed.

The Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) is accepting comments through 5 pm on Friday, Aug. 7 on an application from Cory Hatfield for Clean Water Act permitting of discharges of construction-related stormwater pollution from Hatfield Estates, located at Van Duyn and Coburg Bottom Loop in Coburg. Visit goo.gl/Yp4iAK for info on commenting.

How can Eugene retain the talented young professionals graduating from the University of Oregon instead of losing them to Seattle or San Francisco? That’s the question of the night at an upcoming TAD Talk in August, where speakers have five minutes to sell their idea.  

• A panel discussion on “Interfaith Perspectives: The Weight of the Encyclical’s Call” at 7 pm Thursday, July 30, at the Unitarian Universalist Church, 13th and Chambers. Sponsored by Interfaith Prayer Services International of Eugene. Panelists include Rabbi Jonathan Seidel (moderator), Rabbi Ruhi Sophia, Mel Bankoff and Father Thomas Yurchak. Free.

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.