Check out the rest of our 2017 Year in Review package.
Let’s get ready to rumble! If it’s not “The Big One” quake specials (OK, King 5 News, we’ll kit up!) and tsunami and lahar drills, it’s the hundreds of Ring of Fire reminders we get annually; this spring, Bremerton was beset by a “swarm” of 50 tiny temblors. And, did you hear? This summer, U.S. Geological Survey scientists revealed new 3-D imaging and other evidence suggesting that a massive “lava lake” (the size of two and a half Lake Michigans) flows beneath Mount Rainier and nearby mountains—er, volcanoes—in Oregon. Sleep tight!
His people may be starved of food and free will, but that little Napoleon in North Korea has no shortage of chutzpah or, apparently, nuclear-missile-launching capabilities. Over the summer, Kim Jong-un whizzed several missiles over U.S. ally Japan (plus set off a underground hydrogen whopper that registered on the Richter scale), threatened the U.S. territory of Guam and, in September, repositioned an ICBM launcher to suggest a new trajectory: the West Coast.
We get it, Jeff Bezos, you love robots (and from the giant robot suit you wore to your Mars conference in March, you’d probably love to be one). And it seems you also want robots, drones, artificial intelligence et al. to take all of our jobs—from food service and package delivery workers to (saints preserve us) writers! We know nonunion bots were updating last November’s election results at The Washington Post. (Pssst: Check out a few sci-fi flicks to see how this stuff usually works out for the inventor, not to mention the world.)
The nation’s most contaminated nuclear site won’t let us forget our plutonium-making past. In May, a surprise sinkhole at Hanford caused the cave-in of a tunnel storing railcars packed with radioactive waste. No airborne radiation was detected during the “four or so days” before the sinkhole’s discovery. A week later, however, radioactive contamination was found on a Hanford worker’s clothes. Silkwood shower nightmare scenario is still in rotation.
Not to get biblical, but it got awfully End of Times and/or Game of Thrones around here, what with the forest-fire-induced smoke screens, Star Wars–ish Tatooine sunsets, blood moons and, of course, the raining down of ash. It’s almost like we have a dragon infestation…or our climate is changing.