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Proposed Oil-By-Rail Expansion At Shell’s Anacortes Refinery Drawing Crowds

KPLU News - 3 hours 54 min ago

An overflowing crowd turned out to testify in Skagit County Thursday on plans to add an oil-train facility to Shell’s refinery in Anacortes.

The company says it needs to be able to receive Bakken crude by rail to remain competitive. 

Amazon Posts Fourth-Quarter Profit As Cloud-Computing Revenue Climbs

KPLU News - 7 hours 8 min ago

Amazon shares jumped 13 percent in after-hours trading on news that the company returned to profitability in the fourth quarter. Strength in the cloud-computing business was an especially bright spot.

Cloud computing means hiring a company such as Amazon to run your computer system remotely instead of managing all those machines and software in-house.

Amazon and rivals such as Microsoft have been spending a lot to build big computer server farms. In spite of that expense, IDC analyst Al Hilwa says it’s an attractive business for Amazon.

Idaho Gay Rights Bill Dies In Tearful Committee Hearing

KPLU News - 7 hours 43 min ago


A committee in the Idaho House Thursday rejected a gay rights measure known as the “Add the Words bill” on a 13-4 party line vote.

Washington Lands Commissioner Loses PUD Right-Of-Way Battle

KPLU News - 7 hours 56 min ago


Public utility districts in Washington have the right to place power lines through state trust lands, the state Supreme Court has ruled.

This ends a years-long legal fight between Washington’s elected lands commissioner and the Okanogan PUD.

Blending Vs. Juicing? How To Get The Most Nutrition From Your Fruit

KPLU News - 8 hours 32 min ago
At a time when Americans consume, on average, only about one serving of fruit and one serving of vegetables a day when we're supposed to consume five to 13 servings, the appeal of juice and smoothies is pretty obvious.

Juice can be a convenient way to get more servings of fruit and veggies. And, hey, making your own juice concoctions at home can be fun.

So, here's the question: What's the better gadget, a juicer or a blender?

Pro Football Hall Of Fame Tackles Assisted Living Center

KPLU News - 8 hours 40 min ago
The newest inductees into the Pro Football Hall of Fame will be picked on Saturday.

Mormon LGBT Announcement Met With Cheers, Skepticism

KPLU News - 8 hours 52 min ago
Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Study Finds Court Fees Also Punish The Families Of Those Who Owe

KPLU News - 8 hours 59 min ago
A new report on the growth of court fines and fees that are charged to often-impoverished offenders is focusing on another group that pays: their families.

Titled "When All Else Fails, Fining the Family," the study finds that impoverished people who go through the criminal justice system almost always get cash from family and friends to help pay their court-ordered fines, even though those family and friends are often poor, too.

Prosecutor's Murky Death Could Impact Argentina's Elections

KPLU News - 9 hours 6 min ago
Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Dartmouth Bans Hard Liquor On Campus

KPLU News - 9 hours 6 min ago
Dartmouth College is banning hard liquor on campus and will introduce a mandatory four-year sexual violence prevention and education program for students.

The Spicy History Of Short Selling Stocks

KPLU News - 9 hours 7 min ago
Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Scientists, General Public Have Divergent Views On Science, Report Says

KPLU News - 9 hours 24 min ago
U.S. adults see various science-related topics much differently than do America's top scientists, with the two groups expressing widely divergent views on the safety of genetically modified foods, climate change, human evolution, the use of animals in research and vaccines, according to a new report published by Pew Research Center.

The report, Public and Scientists' Views on Science and Society, was based on surveys of a sample of U.S.

NBC's 'Parenthood' Ends As A Family Drama Built On Small Moments

KPLU News - 9 hours 30 min ago
It happens at least once every episode: A scene in Parenthood carefully crafted to make you cry.

Like the moment when devoted parents Adam and Kristina Braverman try to console their son Max — who has Asperger's syndrome — after a school camping trip goes bad.

"Why do all the other kids hate me?" Max Braverman asks, voice wavering, just before telling his disbelieving parents a classmate relieved himself in his canteen during the trip. "Asperger's is supposed to make me smart. But if I'm smart then why ...

With 'Discover' Feature, Snapchat Bucks Social Trend In News

KPLU News - 9 hours 34 min ago


Guantanamo Bay A Sticking Point Between U.S., Cuba Since 1903

KPLU News - 9 hours 39 min ago
Guantanamo Bay is home to the United States' oldest overseas base. And since it was established in 1903, the base has been a bone of contention in U.S. and Cuban relations. Melissa Block talks to Vanderbilt History professor Paul Kramer. Copyright 2015 NPR.

Food Industry Drags Its Heels On Recyclable And Compostable Packaging

KPLU News - 9 hours 54 min ago
Let's face it: We are people who consume many of our meals on the go. That means we're not eating on real plates or bowls but out of plastic containers and paper boxes. And perhaps daily, we drink our coffees and sodas out of plastic or plastic-lined paper cups.

Overall, Americans recycle at the lamentable rate of 34.5 percent and recycle plastic packaging at the even measlier rate of 14 percent. So the majority of that food packaging is ending up in landfills, or on the street as litter, where it may eventually get swept into the ocean.

Girls Get Good Grades But Still Need Help. As For Boys ... SOS!

KPLU News - 11 hours 8 min ago
A new study shows that when it comes to the classroom, girls rule.

They outperform boys in math, science and reading in 70 percent of the 70-plus countries and regions surveyed by the Organization for Economic Development Cooperation and Development.

Researchers Looking At Ice To Answer Questions About Climate Change

KPLU News - 11 hours 29 min ago

Ancient gas bubbles preserved in ice are helping scientists figure out what the Earth’s atmosphere was like 40,000 years ago, and how it might change in the future.

The data is coming from a core of ice that resembles a PVC pipe. When the drilling is completed, almost a mile of ice will have been extracted from this inland site in western Antarctica.

British Fighters 'Escort' Russian Bombers Near U.K. Airspace

KPLU News - 11 hours 34 min ago
The British government has summoned Russia's ambassador to the United Kingdom, asking him to explain why a pair of nuclear-capable Russian long-range "Bear" bombers had flown alarmingly close to U.K. airspace.

In a situation reminiscent of the Cold War, British Typhoon fighters were scrambled to intercept the TU-95s on Wednesday. Ultimately, the bombers did not enter U.K.

Gunman Reportedly Kills 3 U.S. Contractors In Attack At Kabul Airport

KPLU News - 12 hours 36 min ago
Three Americans who were working as contractors in Afghanistan died in a gunman's attack at the Hamid Karzai International Airport complex Thursday, the Associated Press reports.

The news agency adds:

"It was not immediately clear who did the shooting or whether the shooter was a member of the Afghan security forces.

"The U.S. defense officials spoke on condition of anonymity because the incident was in the early stages of investigation."

In addition to the U.S. casualties, an Afghan citizen also died, the AP says.

Update at 3:35 p.m.