Monday, May 23, 2011

Weekend Links

Not much this week.

1. A couple of light rail links
Tunnel boring has begun on a tunnel that will link the WU campus with downtown. This project is expected to cost $2B. Anyone want to guess the over/under?
Sound Transit may to renege on a voter approved bond to expand light rail to Federal Way, WA. In the original bond, money would be provided to expand light rail from Seattle to Federal Way sometime around 2025. Now it looks like it could as late as 2040. Don’t think I’ll be riding on the initial train.

2. Boeing Expanding. The Renton plant, which has seen decreases in recent years, is looking to expand as business for Boeing picks up.  1,200 workers are expected to be hired by 2013. This is really good news for our local area.

3. Fibs from Libs? A study done a few years back about the runoff into Puget Sound estimated that an Exxon Valdez amount of oil reaches Puget Sound every two years. Then they tried to refine that and say every two years that much toxic chemical reaches The Sound. Turns out neither are correct and are off by a factor of a few dozen.  The politicians tried to spin and failed:

But the inaccurate claims also reflect an eagerness within Gov. Chris Gregoire’s administration to seize on easy-to-grasp anecdotes that highlight Puget Sound’s ecological troubles.

“These studies did exactly what they should have: they refined over time our understanding of the problem,” said (Jay) Manning, who’s now Gregiore’s chief of staff. “As a result, we now know that the relative contribution of petroleum to pollution in Puget Sound is lower than anticipated – by a significant margin. Do I regret my previous statement? I do. But we havet o follow the science.”

Manning was the lead of the Department of Ecology and is responsible for releasing this very wrong (misleading?) statement of how much pollution was running into Puget Sound. I haven’t done any digging, but I am curious how many environmental programs costing us money were made based on his faulty statement

1. Mexican Drug Violence impacting US Businesses. The ongoing drug violence has US businesses rethinking their business plans regarding Mexico. Recently, one Mattel employee was killed when their bus was caught in the violence.

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