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Environment

Somers Greenhouse Powers Up With Wood

Apr 21, 2011
Nancy Eve Cohen.

Officials from the U.S. Department of Agriculture gathered at a wholesale greenhouse in Connecticut, today to celebrate a federal program that funds  energy projects.  WNPR’s Nancy Cohen reports.

Minor Flooding Forecast On Connecticut River

Apr 15, 2011
Nancy Eve Cohen

The Connecticut River rose above flood stage in parts of Connecticut and Massachusetts today and is expected to continue to rise Thursday. But the forecast is for minor flooding. WNPR’s Nancy Cohen reports.

Lecture Series Marks 40th Anniversary Of DEP

Apr 15, 2011
Chion Wolf

Forty years ago this month the state of Connecticut created the Department of Environmental Protection. The D.E.P. is marking the occasion by launching a lecture series. As WNPR’s Nancy Cohen reports the goal is to stimulate thinking about the agency’s expanding role.

Human Traffic Signals

Apr 11, 2011
Uma Ramiah photo

For at least 20 minutes on Friday evening, no one ran a red light at the corner of Church and Chapel Streets downtown.

It may have been all those human red lights, on a mission.

“We’re here because we’ve noticed a problem in New Haven, where drivers run red lights pretty frequently,” said Juli Stupakevich (pictured), who organized a “Red Means Stop” protest at that intersection. “Red just doesn’t mean stop anymore.”

So Few Smelt

Apr 11, 2011
Flickr Creative Commons, John Loo

Migrating fish just a half-foot long once flooded coastal rivers of the northeast every spring. In recent decades, rainbow smelt populations have been declining every year, and are fading to a dim memory in many places. But not in Down East Maine. As part of a collaboration with Northeast stations, Murray Carpenter reports that elsewhere in the region, scientists are trying to bring them back.   

Public Service of New Hampshire

The nation’s first carbon trade system, which started in the northeast, may be in trouble. The Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, or RGGI, is designed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions ten percent by 2018. But now, three of the ten states in the initiative are considering withdrawing, in part, because of the cost to electric ratepayers. As part of a collaboration with Northeast stations, Amy Quinton with New Hampshire Public Radio reports.

Boaters Can Help Stop Spread Of Invasive Species

Apr 8, 2011
Andres Musta

The state Department of Environmental Protection is training volunteers to educate boaters about invasive species on Candlewood Lake. Last fall the invasive zebra mussel was found in Lakes Zoar and Lillinonah. The mussel can be carried in boats from one lake to another. Eleanor Mariani of the D.E.P. says the volunteers will ask boaters to make sure they’ve cleaned their vessels if they’ve been in a lake that contains the mussel.

Meeting On Mattresses

Apr 8, 2011
Violentz, Flickr Creative Commons

Government and businesses have figured out how to recycle a lot of things such as bottles and cans, old computers and even left-over paint. But how do you recycle something that’s big, bulky and may contain bed bugs? That’s the subject of the first national meeting on mattress recycling that will be held next Monday in Hartford. 

Learning About the Problem of PCBs

Apr 8, 2011
Nancy Eve Cohen

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is holding a series of workshops this week on the human health risks of PCBs in the Housatonic River and the different approaches to cleaning them up. WNPR’s Nancy Cohen reports.

Before the mid-1970s, when polychlorinated biphenyls or PCBs were deemed toxic and banned by Congress, the chemical compound was commonly used in manufacturing. General Electric used PCBs when it made electrical transformers at its former plant on the Housatonic River in Pittsfield, Massachusetts.

New Britain Busway

Apr 5, 2011

Governor Dannel Malloy has given his stamp of approval on construction of a New Britain to Hartford busway. The busway will travel along a 9.6 mile route of abandoned railroad bed, easing congestion on Interstate 84. Opponents and Supporters of the project met late last month with the Governor to offer their opinion on this controversial project.  One of those opponents is University of Connecticut Civil Engineering professor, Norman Garrick.

Governor Gives Green Light for Busway

Apr 5, 2011
Capitol Region Council of Governments

Connecticut is closer to getting its first rapid transit system. Governor Dannel Malloy announced today his support for a rapid bus project from New Britain to Hartford. As WNPR’s Nancy Cohen reports the Governor says he also wants to devote state funds to study a rail project in Waterbury.

State Closes Trail to Protect Nesting Eagles

Apr 4, 2011
goingslo, Flickr Creative Commons

The state Department of Environmental Protection is closing down a hiking trail  for a few months in Windsor Locks to keep people away from a nesting pair of Bald eagles. 

Invasive Algae Discovered in Farmington River

Apr 1, 2011
Photo by Bikeride via Flickr Creative Commons

Connecticut’s environmental agency says an invasive algae has been discovered in the west branch of the Farmington River, a favorite place for trout fishing. Although the algae has been found in Vermont, New Hampshire and New York this is the first time it has been seen in Connecticut. WNPR’s Nancy Cohen reports.

Golden Eagle Helps Site Wind Turbines

Mar 31, 2011
Nancy Eve Cohen

It’s not that unusual to see Bald eagles in parts of the Northeast, but Golden eagles are rare here. In all there are only one to two thousand in eastern North America. As part of a collaboration of Northeast stations, WNPR’s Nancy Cohen reports from a windswept hilltop in Connecticut where a rescued Golden eagle was released into the wild.

One day this winter, farmer Brian Hawks was snowmobiling in Amenia, NY, when he saw something on the side of the trail. It was a Golden eagle with an injured foot.

Everyone Loves Trees

Mar 28, 2011
Flickr Creative Commons, Magic Madzik

Outdoor Enthusiast: Beware of the Hair!

Mar 28, 2011
CPBN Media Lab

Location: The setting that Mohawk State Forest offers is so serene and untouched that it's hard to believe it's located right off of Route 4. According to the Department of Environmental Protection, the Mountain covers 3,943 acres, making it one of the state's largest parks. 3,703 of those acres make up Mohawk State Forest, the six largest state forest in Connecticut. Its spectacular views of the Berkshire Mountains in western Connecticut are some of the most breath-taking in the state.

Looking For The Elusive Mountain Lion

Mar 28, 2011
U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service

Forests across much of the Northeast are still home to bobcats, and Canada Lynx can still be found in Maine. But the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service recently declared the region’s biggest wild cat – the eastern mountain lion -- is officially extinct. That might sound like the end of the story, but a growing number of biologists think mountain lions could return to reclaim their territory in the Northeast. As part of a collaboration with Northeastern Public Radio stations, Brian Mann has our story.

Towns Compete to See Who Loses the Most

Mar 25, 2011
Rennett Stowe, Flickr Creative Commons

Fourteen cities and towns in Connecticut are part of a new progam, funded by the U.S. Department of Energy, to see which town can reduce its energy use the most. 

Japan, One Week Later

Mar 18, 2011
Fox News Insider, Creative Commons

After a full week of pictures and words and statistics, it’s still hard to get a grip on the scope of the tragedy.  Thousands killed, with many thousands more missing.  Hundreds of thousands without water or shelter.  And, the specter of a nuclear meltdown that has taken the world’s attention away from the devastation of the original event.

Today, a week after the earthquake – we’ll look at Japan.  How it’s coping, and how people in Connecticut are helping.

State Launches E-Waste Recycling Program

Mar 15, 2011
Nancy Eve Cohen

Computer and T.V. manufacturers are constantly improving technology. Which means consumers regularly buy new stuff and throw out the old. The problem is computers and televisions contain toxic materials that are dangerous and end up in landfills or are shipped to developing countries. The state of Connecticut is now being very careful about where this waste ends up.

What UConn Huskies and Crows Have in Common

Mar 14, 2011
photo by http://www.flickr.com/photos/malfet/

A Yale University ecologist has turned to college basketball to explain patterns of biodiversity. WNPR’s Nancy Cohen takes us down the court.

Ecologist Robert Warren is a post-doc at Yale’s environmental school. He says in any natural system you’ll find “a remarkably consistent” pattern:

"No matter what system you're in... jungle, woodland, you get a few very common species and lots of uncommon. And this is really intriguing for ecologists because there are very few patterns that we see repeatedly that are kind of universal.”

When Cash Register Receipts Cost Too Much

Mar 4, 2011
Chion Wolf

The Environment Committee is considering legislation that would ban the use of cash register receipts that contain the chemical, BPA. The bill would also require a research institute at UConn to develop a list of toxic chemicals. 

Farm Together Now

Mar 4, 2011
creative commons, gardener41

Looking for Places to Sell Local Wine

Mar 1, 2011
Chion Wolf

Connecticut farms that make and bottle their own wine are looking for more venues to showcase their products. Some package stores oppose two proposals that would give farmers more places to sell bottled wine.

The Secret Life of Water

Feb 25, 2011
Nancy Eve Cohen

Environmentalists want to protect the states’ rivers from running dry. The state and federal government want to keep public water supplies safe from terrorists. These competing interests have led to a battle over information, which is going before the state’s Freedom of Information Commission tomorrow. 

Debate Over Busway Heats Up

Feb 23, 2011
Capitol Region Council of Governments

Connecticut’s Transportation Committee is considering a proposal to take funds designated for a New Britain to Hartford bus project and spend it on reinvigorating train service from Waterbury to Hartford. WNPR’s Nancy Cohen reports.

The “busway” project, as it’s known, is designed to reduce the congestion on Interstate 84 by building a separate 9.4 mile road just for busses. There would be elevated platforms, similar to a train station with service every three to six minutes during peak commuter hours.

Helping Small Businesses With Energy Costs

Feb 16, 2011

Governor Dannel Malloy announced today a pilot program to help small businesses pay for energy costs. 

Chris McClane, Creative Commons

Connecticut transportation is in crisis on the ground and in the skies.

The Northeast corridor has the nation’s busiest airspace and Metro-North’s New Haven Line the most commuter traffic in the U.S. But thanks to relentless winter weather and continued delay of the MTA’s new M8 train cars, more than half of Metro North’s New Haven line trains are out of service.  The result is a  decrease in service and plenty of livid commuters. 

Thomas McMillan, New Haven Independent

A pilot landing at Bradley International Airport in Windsor Locks hears a roaring noise just above his plane, but checks his traffic alert system and sees nothing in the area.

“Do you have traffic on top of us?” he asks an airport controller. The response is matter-of-fact but chilling: The plane has entered an area of “heavy military operations,” with a pair of F-15 fighter jets that departed nearby Barnes Municipal Airport coming close enough to deem the incident an “NMAC,” or near midair collision, a January 2010 report says.

Snow Damages Farm Buildings, Some Animals Killed

Feb 9, 2011
Diane Miller

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