02-25-2021  7:42 pm   •   PDX and SEA Weather
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NORTHWEST NEWS

Black Restaurant Week Comes to Portland

National event highlights Black-owned restaurants, cafes, and food trucks, creates countrywide database to support Black businesses

Portland Police Launch Team to Investigate Shootings

 The Enhanced Community Safety Team will be comprised of three sergeants, 12 officers and six detectives, and will staff a seven-member on-call unit to respond to shooting scenes, examine evidence, interview witnesses and do immediate follow-up investigations

Oregon National Guard Deploys As Power Outages Persist

The Oregon National Guard will go door-to-door in areas hardest hit by last weekend’s ice storm to make sure residents who have been without power for a week have enough food and water

Vancouver Drops Most Police Killing Protest Charges

Hundreds marched through the city from Oct. 30 to Nov. 1 to protest the shooting death of Kevin Peterson Jr. by two Clark County Sheriff’s Office detectives

NEWS BRIEFS

Seattle Black Artist To Be Featured in Amazon Prime Series

The Northwest African American Museum (NAAM), in Seattle, Washington, is launching a call for artist...

NIKE, Inc. and Goalsetter Partner to Increase Financial Literacy Among America’s Youth

Goalsetter uses digital platforms to engage youth and help them better understand financial well-being, while saving for their future ...

Six Trailblazing Black Judges to Discuss Overcoming Challenges Feb. 26

The online program panel judges include Justice Adrienne Nelson, the first Black justice of the Oregon Supreme Court and the first...

Launch of the Center for Black Entrepreneurship to Help Fuel Black Innovation

The facility is the first-ever academic center of its kind to assemble, educate and empower a new class of Black entrepreneurial...

Medical Centre to Screen Film and Hold Panel on Black Men in Medicine

Seattle-based Virginia Mason Franciscan Health has invited 100 students to take part in the virtual event, which aims to inspire Black...

Oregon Senate hit by another GOP boycott, now over COVID-19

SALEM, Ore. (AP) — Republicans in the Oregon Senate boycotted Thursday's session, using a tactic they have employed in the past two years to assert their will by stopping work in the Democratic-led Legislature — this time over the state's handling of the coronavirus pandemic.Senate...

Rep. Herrera Beutler censured over Trump impeachment vote

VANCOUVER, Wash. (AP) — Members of Washington's Clark County Republican party voted this week to formally censure Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler, of Battle Ground, over her vote to impeach former President Donald Trump.In a rowdy gathering at a church on Tuesday, the Clark County Republican...

Ex-Cardinals coach Wilks new defensive coordinator at Mizzou

COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) — Steve Wilks is returning to coaching as the defensive coordinator at Missouri.Wilks, who was hired by Tigers coach Eli Drinkwitz on Thursday, took last year off after spending the previous 14 seasons in the NFL. The stint was highlighted by a year as the head coach of...

Music City Bowl between Iowa and Missouri canceled

The Music City Bowl between Missouri and Iowa was canceled Sunday because COVID-19 issues left the Tigers unable to play.The game scheduled for Wednesday in Nashville, Tennessee, is the second bowl called off since the postseason lineup was set on Dec. 20, joining the Gasparilla Bowl. Overall, 18...

OPINION

Democracy and White Privilege

“White Nationalists” who believe that America only belongs to its “White” citizens, who live and have lived according to “White Privilege” are ignoring the words of the Declaration of Independence ...

The Leadership Conference Submits Letter in Support of H.R. 40

H.R. 40 finally forces the U.S. government to recognize and make amends for the decades of economic enrichment that have benefited this nation as a result of the free labor that African slaves were forced to provide ...

Letter to the Editor Re: Zenith Energy

The time is now for Portland City Council to stop Zenith Energy’s transporting fossil fuels into and out of our city. ...

The Heroes Within Us

Black History Month, as it exists today, continues the practice of “othering” Black people in America. ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

Judge stops Noem from releasing records in AG's fatal crash

PIERRE, S.D. (AP) — A South Dakota judge on Thursday blocked Gov. Kristi Noem from releasing documents and video in the investigation of the state's attorney general for striking and killing a man with his car.Defense attorneys for Jason Ravnsborg, the state's top law enforcement agent,...

BLM launches Survival Fund amid federal COVID-19 relief wait

NEW YORK (AP) — The Black Lives Matter Global Network Foundation is formally expanding a million financial relief fund that it quietly launched earlier this month, to help people struggling to make ends meet during the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.The foundation, which grew out of the...

Chief: Police heeded Capitol attack warnings but overwhelmed

WASHINGTON (AP) — Lawmakers pressed the acting U.S. Capitol Police chief Thursday to explain why the force wasn't prepared to fend off a violent mob of insurrectionists even though officials had compiled specific, compelling intelligence that extremists were likely to attack Congress and try...

ENTERTAINMENT

Quotes from Stephen King interview with The Associated Press

NEW YORK (AP) — Stephen King spoke recently to The Associated Press recently about his new novel, “Later,” but he also covered topics ranging from the famous people who have turned up at his readings to what happens when he looks up his own name on the Internet. And he think he...

Stephen King talks about crime, creativity and new novel

NEW YORK (AP) — Stephen King doesn't think of himself as a horror writer. “My view has always been you can call me whatever you want as long as the checks don't bounce,” King told The Associated Press during a recent telephone interview. “My idea is to tell a good story,...

Lady Gaga's dog walker shot, French bulldogs stolen in LA

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Lady Gaga's dog walker was shot and two of the singer's French bulldogs were stolen in Hollywood during an armed robbery, police said. The singer is offering a 0,000 reward.The dog walker was shot once Wednesday night and is expected to survive his injuries, according...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

Mr. Potato Head drops the mister, sort of

NEW YORK (AP) — Is it Mr. Potato Head or not? Hasbro created confusion Thursday when it announced that it...

Brazil death toll tops 250,000, virus still running rampant

RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) — Brazil’s COVID-19 death toll, which surpassed 250,000 on Thursday, is the...

Amnesty report describes Axum massacre in Ethiopia's Tigray

NAIROBI, Kenya (AP) — Soldiers from Eritrea systematically killed “many hundreds” of people,...

Pro-military marchers in Myanmar attack anti-coup protesters

YANGON, Myanmar (AP) — Supporters of Myanmar’s junta attacked people protesting the military...

AP PHOTOS: Hindu festival draws crowds of bathers to rivers

PRAYAGRAJ, India (AP) — Millions of people have joined a 45-day Hindu bathing festival in the northern...

Facebook signs pay deals with 3 Australian news publishers

CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — Facebook announced on Friday preliminary agreements with three Australian...

Colleen Long and Harry R. Weber Associated Press

NEW ORLEANS – Oil stopped gushing into the Gulf of Mexico from BP's busted well Thursday for the first time since the disastrous spill began, the oil giant said. It was the most significant milestone yet in BP's effort to control one of the worst environmental disasters in U.S. history.
The Skanner News Video click here
Now begins a waiting period to see if the cap can hold the oil without blowing a new leak in the well. Engineers will monitor pressure readings incrementally for up to 48 hours before reopening the cap while they decide what to do next. The cap is only planned as a temporary fix until a final plug is set from underground, maybe next month.
The news elicited joy mixed with skepticism from Gulf Coast residents wearied by months of false starts, setbacks and failures. Alabama Gov. Bob Riley's face lit up when he heard the oil flow had stopped.
"That's great. I think a lot of prayers were answered today," said Riley.
The stoppage came 85 days, 16 hours and 25 minutes after the first report April 20 of an explosion on the BP-leased Deepwater Horizon oil rig that killed 11 workers and triggered the spill.
The Skanner News Video: President Obama on oil leak cap
"Finally!" said Renee Brown, a 35-year-old middle school guidance counselor visiting Pensacola Beach, Fla., from London, Ky."Honestly, I'm surprised that they haven't been able to do something sooner, though."
Video images, which for months had featured a billowing brown cloud violently fouling the Gulf, showed a remarkably different picture: A quiet, still well. Shortly after it coughed its last bit of oil and the last opening was squeezed shut, it quieted, with only tiny bubbles floating past the stack.
Commercial fishermen at Delta Marina in oil-stained Plaquemines Parish were subdued in their response. Some said there was still a long clean up ahead and others flatly refused to believe the leak was contained.
"I don't believe that. That's a lie. It's a (expletive) lie," said Stephon LaFrance, a 49-year-old oysterman whose been out of work for weeks. "I don't believe they stopped that leak. BP's trying to make their self look good."
Kent Wells, a BP PLC vice president, said at a news briefing that oil stopped flowing into the water at 2:25 p.m. CDT after engineers gradually dialed down the amount of crude escaping through the last of three valves in the 75-ton cap.
"I am very pleased that there's no oil going into the Gulf of Mexico. In fact, I'm really excited there's no oil going into the Gulf of Mexico," Wells said.
Now begins a waiting period to see if the cap can hold the oil without blowing a new leak in the well. Engineers will monitor pressure readings incrementally for up to 48 hours before reopening the cap while they decide what to do.
"For the people living on the Gulf, I'm certainly not going to guess their emotions," Wells said. "I hope they're encouraged there's no oil going into the Gulf of Mexico. But we have to be careful. Depending on what the test shows us, we may need to open this well back up."
Though not a permanent fix, the solution has been the only one that has worked to stem the flow of oil since April. BP is drilling two relief wells so it can pump mud and cement into the leaking well in hopes of plugging it for good by mid-August.
BP has struggled to contain the spill and had so far been successful only in reducing the flow, not stopping it. The company removed an old, leaky cap and installed the new one Monday.
Between 93.5 million and 184.3 million have already spilled into the Gulf, according to federal estimates.
For some, it was hard to believe the flow had really stopped.
"Completely?" asked Michelle Blanchard, the wife of a shrimper in Chauvin, La., when she heard about the oil stopping from an AP reporter. "Come on," she said in disbelief.
"It's a good thing it stopped. I'm excited," she said.
Steve Shepard, Gulf Coast chair of the Mississippi Chapter of the Sierra Club, said he's still skeptical about the news.
"I think it's a little premature to say it's definitely over. They've gotten our hopes up so many times before that in my mind I don't think it's going to be over until Christmas."
Nine-year-old Lena Durden threw up her hands in jubilation when her mother told her the oil was stopped.
"God, that's wonderful," said Yvonne Durden, a Mobile-area native who now lives in Seattle and brought her daughter to the coast for a visit. "When came here so she could swim in the water and see it in case it's not here next time."
Chris Roberts, a councilman from coastal Jefferson Parish welcomed the news.
"Everyone has waited on edge for this day to come," said Roberts, whose district includes the devastated tourist town of Grand Isle. "There is a lot of oil remaining. Our focus will be to clean up the impacted areas and make the many impacted industries whole as quickly as possible."
Retired Coast Guard Adm. Thad Allen, the Obama administration's point man on the disaster, said at a briefing it's not clear yet whether the cap, which was mounted on the well Monday, will ultimately be used to shut in the oil or to channel it through pipes to collection ships overhead.
Randall Luthi, president of the Washington, D.C.-based National Ocean Industries Association, a national trade group representing the offshore petroleum industry, said it gives everyone a chance to focus on how to clean up the spill.
"This is by far the best news we've heard in 86 days. You can bet that industry officials and their families are taking a big sigh here. We hope this is a reliable fix to the immediate flow of oil until the relief wells are completed."
___
Weber reported from Houston. Associated Press Writers Holbrook Mohr in Empire, La., Shelia Byrd in Jackson, Miss., Jay Reeves in Dauphin Island, Ala., Mary Foster, Alan Sayre, Kevin McGill and Vicki Smith in New Orleans and Matt Sedensky in Pensacola Beach, Fla., contributed to this report.

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