Alex Baumhardt

Alex Baumhardt

Alex Baumhardt has been a national radio producer focusing on education for American Public Media since 2017. She has reported from the Arctic to the Antarctic for national and international media, and from Minnesota and Oregon for The Washington Post.

Alexis Taylor at her Senate Confirmation Hearing

Oregon’s former agriculture director confirmed to lead foreign trade for USDA

By: - December 21, 2022

The former head of the Oregon Department of Agriculture was confirmed by the U.S. Senate on Wednesday to oversee foreign trade in the U.S. Department of Agriculture. President Joe Biden appointed Alexis Taylor as undersecretary for trade and foreign agriculture affairs in May. The position has been vacant since Biden took office.  Taylor will be […]

Warm Springs

Warm Springs gets $24 million for reliable water treatment plant after years of issues

By: - December 21, 2022

A federal and tribal agreement will give the Warm Springs Reservation in north-central Oregon a functional and reliable water treatment facility for the first time in several years. The Environmental Protection Agency and the Indian Health Authority have combined nearly $24 million in funds under the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act passed in November 2021 […]

Three steelhead trout travel in the Columbia Basin

Some Oregon trout withstand rising water temperatures, study finds

By: - December 21, 2022

In Sept. 2020, the Archie Creek fire near Roseburg burned all 5,000 acres of the Hinkle Creek watershed, home to rainbow, cutthroat and steelhead trout.  Oregon State University scientists who had been studying the fish for years figured the loss of tree cover would mean warmer stream temperatures that would stress, and ultimately kill, many […]

More oversight needed of community colleges after performance and enrollment declines, audit finds

By: - December 20, 2022

The commission tasked with overseeing Oregon’s 17 community colleges must do more to increase student performance, achievement and access, according to an audit by the Secretary of State’s Office.  In its report published Monday, auditors said the Higher Education Coordinating Commission, or HECC, had done a good job of helping to narrow equity gaps in […]

To combat climate change, Oregon bans sale of new, 100% gasoline-powered cars by 2035

By: - December 19, 2022

All new cars sold in Oregon by 2035 must be considered zero-emissions vehicles. On Monday, Oregon’s Environmental Quality Commission voted unanimously to adopt the Advanced Clean Cars II Rule, requiring auto manufacturers to begin producing and delivering a growing number of zero-emission vehicles to Oregon beginning in 2026, so that they make up 100% of […]

Oregon’s overreliance on tuition to cover rising college costs hurts the economy, report finds

By: - December 19, 2022

A new report shows that Oregon is “faced with many problems” when it comes to paying for the rising costs of higher education, ultimately hindering enrollment that has a spillover effect on the state’s economy. The report on trends in state higher education enrollment and funding found that the Legislature’s overreliance on universities raising tuition […]

A view from the Elliott State Research Forest

Oregon’s oldest state forest will no longer be logged to provide funding for schools

By: - December 14, 2022

A state forest with some of the last and largest swathes of old-growth trees in the Oregon Coast Range will no longer be logged to help pay for the public schools.  A vote from the State Land Board made the decision official Wednesday, following Legislative approval in February. The Elliott State Forest, now the Elliott […]


Oregon joins coalition of Western states urging USDA to do more for region’s farmers and ranchers

By: - December 13, 2022

The U.S. Department of Agriculture should be doing more to help Western farmers and ranchers, 14 U.S. senators said in a recent letter to the agency.  On Dec. 7, U.S. Sens. Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden of Oregon joined 12 other U.S. Democratic senators from Arizona, California, Colorado, New Mexico, Nevada and Washington and two […]

The Tillamook State Forest as seen from the summit of King's Mountain. Bare patches mark spots that have been clearcut. (Oregon Department of Forestry/Flickr)

Oregon groups urge Kotek to increase environmental funding, staff

By: - December 9, 2022

Environmental and industry groups are urging Gov.-elect Tina Kotek to increase staff and budgets to tackle water, wildfire, agriculture, climate and energy concerns in the years ahead. About 240 people joined a video call hosted Friday by Kotek’s transition team intended to help the incoming governor prepare her first natural resources budget to present to […]

Neighborhood wildfire prevention could get help from state, insurers under proposed legislation

By: - December 8, 2022

Neighbors hoping to join together to prevent wildfires could get a boost from the state and rewards from insurers under legislation being proposed by state Sen. Jeff Golden, D-Ashland. Golden discussed his plans for the tentatively named Neighborhood Wildfire Protection Act at a meeting of the Senate Natural Resources and Wildfire Recovery Committee Thursday. The […]

The Port of Morrow in Boardman, Oregon.

Port of Morrow agrees to new state regulations limiting nitrogen pollution

By: - December 5, 2022

The Port of Morrow has agreed to new conditions for disposing of its nitrogen-loaded wastewater, accepting changes mandated by the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality following $2.1 million in total fines issued this year.  The agency fined the port in January and June for allowing more than 260 excess tons of nitrogen to be spread […]

A map of Obsidian Renewables proposed hydrogen hub

Oregon company pitches plan to create Northwest hydrogen hub outside state agencies

By: - December 5, 2022

A Lake Oswego-based solar energy company has spurned a Northwest government partnership by launching its own bid to win hundreds of millions in federal dollars to create a green hydrogen production network across Oregon and Washington.  In November, Obsidian Renewables applied to the U.S. Department of Energy to become a green hydrogen hub for the […]