EarthFix/OPB Reporter

Cassandra Profita

Cassandra has been immersed in Columbia River issues since she started reporting for The Daily Astorian newspaper in 2006. She's followed an array of fossil fuel project proposals along the river: Liquefied natural gas imports, then LNG exports, followed by coal exports and crude oil shipping. Meanwhile, she's kept close tabs on salmon recovery efforts, dam management and fisheries. As OPB's Ecotrope blogger, Cassandra added a focus on urban sustainability to her beat with posts on everyday pollutants, bee die-offs, electric cars, urban chickens and even a homeless goat herd.

She grew up in Chicago and earned a degree in journalism at the University of Missouri. She's a fellow with the Institutes for Journalism and Natural Resources and a recipient of the Metcalf Institute for Marine & Environment Reporting Award of Special Merit.

Contact Cassandra Profita

Recent Articles


Sewer Water Beer Wins Oregon Regulators' Approval

OPB | April 15, 2015 6 p.m.

State environmental regulators allow a wastewater treatment utility to give its recycled sewer water to a group of home brewers so they can turn it into beer.

Environment | Energy | local | News

Portland Planning Board Approves Propane Terminal But Adds Climate Fee

OPB | April 7, 2015 11:15 p.m. | Portland

The Portland Planning and Sustainability Commission voted 6-4 Tuesday to recommend a zone change and a carbon fee for a controversial propane export terminal.

Environment | Pacific Ocean

Managers Likely To Cancel West Coast Sardine Fishery

OPB | April 6, 2015 5:30 p.m.

Population counts indicate there aren't enough fish to open the West Coast sardine fishery this year.

Environment | Energy | Climate change

The Northwest Struggles With Coal-Generated Power From Out Of State

OPB | April 2, 2015 6:45 p.m. | Carbon County, Utah

Northwest utilities are fighting pressure end to all use of coal-fired power -- even when it's generated in places like Utah and Montana.

Environment | Pacific Ocean

Hungry Sea Lions Pile Into The Columbia River

OPB | March 26, 2015 5:15 p.m.

As starving sea lions wash ashore in California, biologists are counting a record number of California sea lions in the Columbia River. Coincidence? Probably not.

Environment | Pacific Ocean

Action Taken To Protect Fish At Bottom Of Ocean Food Chain

OPB | March 10, 2015 10:45 a.m. | Vancouver, Washington

West Coast fishery managers adopted a new rule Tuesday that protects many species of forage fish at the bottom of the ocean food chain.

Environment | Energy

Oregon House Sends Clean Fuels Bill To Governor

OPB | March 4, 2015 5 p.m. | Portland

The Oregon House narrowly approves a controversial bill  extending a state effort to reduce carbon emissions from transportation fuels. It now goes to Gov. Kate Brown.

Environment | Energy

Northwest Officials Unite Against Coal And Oil Trains

OPB | March 3, 2015 6:02 p.m. | Portland

More than 150 elected officials from across the Northwest have teamed up to speak out against coal and oil trains. Their new group held its third meeting in Portland Tuesday.

Environment | Forestry

Satellites Give Scientists A Better View Of Forest Insect Outbreaks

OPB | March 2, 2015 3:15 p.m. | Portland

You might call it the forester's version of Google Earth: new satellite mapping that's giving scientists a clearer view of insect outbreaks in Northwest forests.

Environment | Pacific Ocean

Northwest Faces Greater Risks From Acidifying Waters

OPB | Feb. 23, 2015 5 p.m.

The Pacific Northwest faces a higher risk of economic harm from ocean acidification than other parts of the country, according to a new study.


Oregon Senate Votes To Extend Low-Carbon Fuels Program Despite Link To Ethics Scandal

OPB | Feb. 17, 2015 4:15 p.m.

The Oregon Senate votes to extend the state's low-carbon fuel program despite objections from Republicans that the plan is tainted by the ethics scandal embroiling Gov. John Kitzhaber and first lady Cylvia Hayes.

Environment | Fish & Wildlife

Corps Finalizes Plan To Kill Thousands Of Columbia River Cormorants

OPB | Feb. 6, 2015 4:01 p.m. | Portland

A final cormorant management plan released by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers calls for the killing of around 26,000 birds to protect threatened and endangered salmon and steelhead.

Environment | Energy | Climate change

Oregon Bill Would Eliminate Coal-Fired Power By 2025

OPB | Feb. 2, 2015 3:39 p.m.

A bill in the Oregon Legislature this session would require electric companies to stop delivering coal-fired power to Oregon customers by 2025.

Environment | Energy

Now That Growing Pot Is Legal, Can It Also Be More Energy Efficient?

OPB | Jan. 28, 2015 1:39 p.m. | Portland

Marijuana growing operations can be major power hogs. Now that they're legal in Oregon and Washington, experts are looking for ways to make them more energy efficient.

Communities | Environment | Climate change

Portland Brewery Puts Low-Carbon Beer On Tap

OPB | Jan. 26, 2015 11:57 a.m. | Portland

We can't drink our way out of climate change. But a Portland brewery has managed to reduce the greenhouse gas emissions associated with drinking a beer in first low-carbon brew, the Little Foot Red.

Environment | Business | Water

Oregon Water Treatment Company Wants To Turn Sewer Water Into Beer

OPB | Jan. 22, 2015 1:24 p.m. | Portland

Hillsboro-based Clean Water Services has asked the state of Oregon for permission to turn its purified wastewater into beer.

Environment | Climate change

How Climate Change Poses A Risk To National Security

OPB | Jan. 21, 2015 5:23 p.m.

In his State of the Union speech, President Barack Obama argued the United States should act forcefully to combat climate change – and not just for the sake of the planet.

Energy | Environment | Business

Portland Now Generating Hydropower In Its Water Pipes

OPB | Jan. 20, 2015 4:45 p.m. | Portland

A Portland start-up has tapped the city's water pipes as a new source of renewable hydropower that doesn't disrupt fish migration or stream flows.


Former Assistant To Martin Luther King Jr. Speaks In Portland

OPB | Jan. 19, 2015 12:09 p.m. | Portland

A former assistant to the Reverend Martin Luther King Jr. spoke in Portland Monday at a breakfast honoring the famous civil rights leader.

Environment | Energy

Survey Finds Oregon Fire Departments Not Equipped For Oil Train Accident

OPB | Jan. 15, 2015 5:30 p.m.

A survey by the Oregon State Fire Marshal found 81 percent of the state's fire departments don't have the equipment needed to respond to an oil train accident.