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The Planet, Fall 2003, Interstate 5



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Publication Date

Fall 2003


Western Washington University. Associated Students; Huxley College of the Environment; Huxley College of Environmental Studies

Editor in Chief

Jessi Loerch


Western Washington University


Bellingham, WA

Production Staff

Associate Editors: Andy Aley, Torhil Dunham, Colin McDonald; Science Editor: Jessica Stahl; Photographers: Mel Christy, Cole Kozloff, Nicole Mills; Designers: Joe Kohlhas, Dan Petrzelka; Reporters: Ian Alexander, Ben Arnold, Laurie Ballew, Lucas Henning, Brianne Holte, Derek Jackman, Andrea Jasinek, Emily Johnson, Sean Monahan, Casey Morrison, Jen Rittenhouse, Katie Scaief, Jessica Schultes, David Stone, Scott Smith, Marianne Warren; Planet Radio Editor: Aaron Managhan, Planet Radio Reporters: Wolfgang Deerkop, Derek Jackman, Emily Johnson, Casey Morrison, Marianne Warren; Online Editor: Taylor Zajonc; GIS Consultant: Alex Brun

Photography Editor

Anya Traisman


Scott Brennan

Publisher (Digital Object)

Resources made available by The Planet and Special Collections, Heritage Resources, Western Libraries, Western Washington University.

Table of Contents

Sound of Speed by Derek Jackman

Neighbors of I-5 deal with the constant barrage of freeway noise. Some methods exist for reducing the noise, but for many people, it’s a matter of adapting to the sound.

Ties to the Past by David Stone

The railroads facilitated development in the West and established many transportation corridors. For most people, the automobile made train travel obsolete. Some, however, still prefer the rails, and without their freight capabilities, gridlock would increase dramatically.

Crash Course by Ian Alexander

Car accidents capture the immediate attention of the public and media. Sometimes, though, their human, environmental and economic effects continue long after the wreckage is cleared.

Lighten the Load by Laurie Ballew

The 14 miles of light rail planned for Seattle to Tukwila offer an alternative to I-5. But some say the rail won’t reduce congestion and construction disrupts neighborhoods.

Life at 60 by Andrea Jasinek

No store or gas station can operate without the constant supply of goods that truckers deliver. These drivers work late nights and early mornings to ensure shelves stay stocked. Meanwhile, state patrol troopers watch the roads, looking for safety violations.

Isolated by Emily Johnson

Transportation workers closely maintain medians to keep the area safe for humans and wildlife. As an isolated habitat, the medians are an unique man-made landscape that few see up close.

Sell Your Soil by Marianne Warren

If farmland is next to I-5 in Skagit Valley its value can triple. But land has to be rezoned for development first. Some see development as a return on an investment, others see it as destruction of rural heritage.

Refuge by Lucas Henning

I-5, the southern border for the Nisqually Wildlife Refuge, heavily affects the refuge. High visitation increases the impact on the natural world, but the high number of visitors also gives refuge staff and volunteers a chance to educate more people.

Dividing Line by Sean Monahan

I-5 divided neighborhoods throughout its corridor. Some think bisecting these areas has contributed to a decreased sense of community. Despite these changes, others still feel a close connection to their neighborhoods.

Running Off Roads by Brianne Holte

Each time it rains, water pours off the surface of I-5, bringing silt and contaminants with it. In Bellingham, a new retention pond should help reduce the effects of runoff on Whatcom Creek.

Changing Tides by Ben Arnold

Humans have changed the Snohomish River estuary to control the tidal water. In the process, they removed vital, productive natural areas. Now, efforts are beginning to restore some of this land along I-5 north of Everett.

Out the Window by Jen Rittenhouse

Where people go, trash inevitably follows. The Adopt-a-Highway program seeks to keep Washington’s highways clean by encouraging volunteers to pick up after the less courteous.

Home Fried Fuel by Katie Scaief

Our nation is dependent on petroleum based fuels. While biodiesel cannot meet the U.S.’s demand, it might provide enough fuel to change the way the way look at gas stations.

The Air We Breathe by Aaron Managhan

Cars drive millions of miles on I-5 every year. Along with all this traffic inevitably comes exhaust. What is in the air we breathe along I-5?




Publication at Western Washington University

Geographic Coverage

Washington (State)


Environmental Sciences | Higher Education | Journalism Studies


Student publication, Ecology, Environmental Studies

Document Type


Subject-Topical (LCSH)

Interstate 5--Washington (State)--Environmental conditions--Periodicals; Human ecology – Washington (State)—Periodicals; Ecology—Washington (State) – Periodicals; Western Washington University--Students--Periodicals and Huxley College of the Environment -- Students --Periodicals.

Subject-Names (LCNAF)

Western Washington University; Huxley College of the Environment.


Copying of this document in whole or in part is allowable only for scholarly purposes. It is understood, however, that any copying or publication of this document for commercial purposes, or for financial gain, shall not be allowed without the author’s written permission.





The Planet, 2003, Fall

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