Cascadia Daily Dec. 22, 2017

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A year of environmental victories in Cascadia

The good folks at Sightline Institute have compiled a  wrap-up of Cascadia’s environmental successes in 2017. Whether it was reducing dependence on coal-fired plants, defeating oil and LNG export projects, legal challenges to the Trump administration’s pro-industry EPA, or forming a west coast climate change alliance, there was actually a lot to celebrate. Sightline does great work researching and promoting strategies for sustainability in Cascadia; send them a little year-end financial support to say thanks.

British Columbia to prescribe version of heroin to fight overdoses

Travis Lupick at the Georgia Straight reports on a radical new move in BC in the fight against an epidemic of drug overdoses: dispensing hydromorphone, a drug similar to injectable heroin. BC’s health ministry is scheduled to roll out the program in March. The goal is to reduce overdose deaths, which will likely top 1,400 in the province this year. “We’ll put our concerns with fixing addiction on the back burner right now, while we deal with this crisis,” said one official.

Seattle and Oregon tap into more money to fight homelessness

Seattle mayor Jenny Durkan announced $100 million in new funds to build affordable housing in Seattle, according to Crosscut. The funds are from a mix of previous levies, new housing taxes, and funds from incentives to developers. In Oregon, governor Kate Brown asked that an additional $5 million be added to the state’s $40 million budget for homeless shelters.
On the other end of the spectrum, Charles Mudede at the Stranger predicts Seattle will soon enter the ultra-luxury prestige-apartment boom that has seized Manhattan and Vancouver. “Money is sloshing around the world with no good place to go.”

A first-person account of the Amtrak 501 derailment

Transit Sleuth, a train and transit aficionado from Seattle, was aboard the Amtrak Cascades train that derailed south of Tacoma, and provides a harrowing account of the crash on his blog. He’ll be back on the route again when service resumes, he writes: “This is one incident, keep sane and smart and don’t let the scariness of this incident make you fear train travel. It’s still dramatically safer than automobile travel, safer than bus travel, and generally safer than most modes.”

50 years later, Bigfoot footage still fascinates

The Sasquatch is an icon of Cascadia, and whether or not you believe it’s real, the legend got its start fifty years ago when two Yakima ranchers publicized the grainy film they claim shows Bigfoot walking along the shore of Bluff Creek, in Northern California. A story at OPB explores the famous footage (and footprint casts) that continue to tantalize Sasquatch seekers across the Northwest.

Vancouver novelist Zoey Leigh Peterson’s novel take on polyamory

Topping lists of 2017 best books in Canada, Next Year For Sure by British-born novelist Zoey Leigh Peterson is a humorous and empathetic story of a seemingly happy couple who experiment with polyamory. The Vancouver writer spoke to Powell’s Books earlier this year:
“It’s about connections between people that feel too big to be called “friendship” but aren’t allowed to be called “marriage.” And more than anything else, it’s about loneliness, the loneliness of adulthood, the loneliness of watching your lifelong friends disappear into their careers or families and leaving you bereft.
I explain all this to people and then they usually say:
“So polyamory, huh?””

That’s all for today from Cascadia Daily world headquarters in Seattle’s lovely Madison Valley. Have a great weekend! –Andrew Engelson

Photo credit image of Sasquatch street art by David Drexler, CC BY-SA 2.0