Drought likely to persist across most of northwest
While a cool, wet spring has helped the resumption of drought in parts of the Northwest, climate experts in Oregon, Washington and Idaho say conditions remain extremely dry in parts of the Northwest. other regions with little chance of rebounding before the summer. Nearly 70% of the region is in some stage of drought, according to the US Drought Monitor, including 20% in “extreme” or “exceptional” drought, the two driest categories. The most severe drought continues to occur in central and southern Oregon, eastern Washington and southern Idaho. By contrast, all of western Washington and Oregon’s Willamette Valley were lifted out of drought thanks to record rainfall in April. Keep reading on Capital Press. (Ryan Brennecke/EO Media Group)
Here’s how abortion clinics are preparing for Roe’s downfall
Leaders of a Tennessee abortion clinic calculated driving distances and studied passenger rail routes by scanning the map for another location to offer services if the U.S. Supreme Court allowed states to restrict or eliminate abortion rights. They chose Carbondale in Illinois — a state that offers easy access to abortion but is surrounded by more restrictive states in the Midwest and South. It will be the southernmost clinic in Illinois when it opens in August. Keep reading on The Bellingham Herald.
As interest rates rise, WA prepares state-run student loan scheme
As the federal government debates canceling student loans and raising interest rates on future loans, the Washington state legislature is stepping in to make school loans more affordable for students here. Governor Jay Inslee signed in March House Bill 1736, establishing a low-interest student loan program to make higher education more manageable for Washington students. State Rep. Pat Sullivan, D-Covington, who sponsored the legislation, pushed the idea in the old days. Keep reading about Crosscut. (Paul Christian Gordon for Crosscut)