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kateausburn / Creative Commons

After years of debate, a solar array spread over more than 130 acres in Simsbury is operational and producing power. Representatives for the Tobacco Valley Solar Farm notified the state Siting Council in a letter Tuesday. 

Patrick Skahill / Connecticut Public Radio

When we think about animals that inhabit the cold New England ocean, sharks, seals, or lobsters may spring to mind. But there’s another critter lurking in the deep off our coast, and it’s one that may hold valuable secrets that could help its tropical cousins.

And you may not have even known that it’s actually an animal: coral. 

Chion Wolf / Connecticut Public Radio

Salem, Massachusetts has long been a focal point in the history of early New England witch trials. But Windsor, Connecticut also has a place on this dark historical timeline: as the site of the nation's first witch hanging. This hour, author Beth Caruso joins us to shine light this little-known piece of Connecticut's past, and talk about how it inspired her novel One of Windsor.

Ryan Caron King / Connecticut Public Radio

The city of Bridgeport is the big winner in the state’s latest offshore wind acquisition. “Park City Wind,” a proposal from developer Vineyard Wind, was selected by state officials Thursday and is being billed as the largest purchase of renewable energy in state history. 

Nicole Leonard

The town of Canton said water at Cherry Brook Primary School is safe to drink after a recent scare over chemical contamination.

Schools Superintendent Kevin Case said this week that testing indicates two wells that feed the school are not contaminated with a family of chemicals called per and polyfluoroalkyl substances, or PFAS.

Dave Sizer / Creative Commons

Delegates from almost 200 countries have begun a two-week international climate conference in Madrid that seeks to step up efforts to stop global warming.

The summit attracted country delegations, along with NGOs and nonprofits from around the world. More than a dozen students from UConn are also attending.

rbeard113 / Creative Commons

Private weather companies are cropping up to produce weather and climate models that have historically been provided by the government. Private weather forecasting is a $7 billion industry that threatens the dominance of the National Weather Service and could lead to a tiered system of access.

PFAS-filled aqueous film forming foam in the brook behind Paddy Abramowicz’s home in Windsor, Connecticut.
Paddy Abramowicz

After a B-17 plane crashed at Bradley International Airport in Connecticut, some of the PFAS in the firefighting foam washed out of the airport and into nearby communities.

A few days after the crash, Paddy Abramowicz, who lives a 5-minute drive from the airport, says she was walking by the brook in her backyard when she saw piles of firefighting foam more than 10 feet high.

"It looked like a washing machine had exploded,” says Abramowicz, “and it was coming over both banks of the brook.”

Sean Flynn / UConn Photo

The University of Connecticut has its first Rhodes scholar.

Wanjiku Gatheru, an environmental studies major from Pomfret, is one of 32 people who will study free of charge at England’s Oxford University for at least two years.

Sikorsky Aircraft

Fighting wildfires is a constant struggle in Southern California, but a Connecticut manufacturer has a way to help.

Nicole Leonard / Connecticut Public Radio

A large silver tank sits in the front of Cherry Brook Primary School in Canton. In it are gallons of clean, filtered water that pump into the school’s fountains, sinks and water bottle filling stations.

It’s been a fixture on school grounds since Nov. 6 when town officials notified parents that Cherry Brook’s well water could be contaminated with PFAS, a family of man-made chemicals that may be toxic to humans. That contamination is thought to have occurred after firefighting foam was used at the school five years ago.

Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection

The town of Canton is holding an informational meeting Wednesday night about possible contamination at Cherry Brook Primary School. Firefighting foam was released on school property in 2014 and emerging evidence indicates some of the chemicals found in those foams are toxic to humans and the environment.

Chion Wolf

There are more than 800 miles of Blue-Blazed Hiking Trails in Connecticut. Today we're doing our show from one of them. 

John Phelan / Wikimedia Commons

When you head to New York, do you ever take a break from the city and get lost on a trail in Central Park? This hour, we take a look at the life of the man behind that beloved and iconic city park: Connecticut native Frederick Law Olmsted.

NTSB via AP

Christopher Albani was at home when he heard the call that a B-17 crashed at Bradley International Airport, killing seven people. He’s a firefighter, one of several who responded to the Oct. 2 crash. 

Albani was put on a hose line, dumping firefighting foam onto burning wreckage. 

“So in that moment, being exposed to it, guys were covered, head to toe, in the stuff,” Albani said.

Mr.TinDC / Creative Commons

AAA Northeast is warning drivers to watch out for deer.  

November is a particularly bad time for deer strikes because fall is mating season for white-tailed deer in New England. Also, with the end of daylight saving time, it’s often dark during the evening commute. 

Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection

Gov. Ned Lamont’s office announced Monday that the state has completed its final action plan to address per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, or PFAS, a class of nearly 5,000 chemicals that has been linked to health problems in animals and humans.

As Connecticut Releases Electric Vehicle Roadmap, Some Question Its Direction

Oct 31, 2019
Adam Moss / Wikimedia Commons

A long-awaited state report on electric vehicle policy options was released the same week the state also reduced rebates.

The timing couldn’t have been more curious. 

Chion Wolf / Connecticut Public Radio

Massachusetts has long been a focal point in the history of early New England witch trials. But Connecticut also has a place on this dark historical timeline: as the site of the nation's first witch hanging. This hour, author Beth Caruso joins us to shine light this little-known piece of Connecticut's past, and talk about how it inspired her novel One of Windsor.

Patrick Skahill / Connecticut Public Radio

Morgan Bengel stood about 35 feet underground, gesturing at the cold, rocky walls inside Old New-Gate Prison & Copper Mine. Late 18th-century descriptions of this subterranean penitentiary were bleak.

“Some of the words are, hell, a dungeon, woeful mansion,” Bengel said. 

Patrick Skahill / Connecticut Public Radio

Politicians and environmentalists met on the banks of the Farmington River Monday to call for more federal action to regulate a band of toxic chemicals. The call comes following two-high profile accidents at Bradley International Airport.

Carmen Baskauf / Connecticut Public Radio

Do you worry about how you’re everyday actions contribute to climate change? You may think about the carbon gas-burning cars are putting into the atmosphere, or coal-powered electricity in your houses.

But what about the food you eat?

Tracking Connecticut's Bobcats

Oct 11, 2019
Lydia Brown / Connecticut Public Radio

It’s a lethal hunter, marked by its tufted ears and focused gaze. It's a breathtaking sight, if you’re lucky enough to see one.

This hour: the bobcat.

This stealthy species has made a comeback in recent years. We talk to researchers who are working to better understand Connecticut’s only wild feline. 

Clownhouse III / Creative Commons

Financial auditors Wednesday cited the state Department of Agriculture for a “serious breakdown” in its accounting procedures. It’s a breakdown that included numerous uncashed checks that were left in a safe in a store room in Hartford. 

Ryan Caron King / Connecticut Public Radio

Two members of New England’s congressional delegation are calling for a federal audit of PFAS chemicals in America’s food supply, with an eye toward understanding whether they can cause contamination. 

Thawt Hawthje / Creative Commons

New England experienced fewer days with unhealthy air quality this year compared to last year, but Connecticut fared the worst in the six-state region, according to federal environmental officials.

images of Giant ground sloth (Megatherium americanum), Moa (Megalapteryx didinus), Blue Whale (Balaenoptera musculus)
Ballista, George Edward Lodge, Michael L. Baird / Wikimedia Commons

What would it have been like to see a huge, elephant-like mastodon roaming our state? 

The earth has been home to some spectacularly large animals. A few of them still roam or swim our world today. This hour, we take a look at the biology of these giants. 

From chunky island-dwelling birds to the enormous blue whale, what do we know about why these creatures evolved to be so big? And why don’t we see more of them today? 

Plus, with a UN report warning that a million species are at risk of extinction in coming years, are we at risk of losing those big creatures we still have?

Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection

State health and environmental officials say Connecticut’s drinking water should undergo required testing for PFAS, a group of more than 4,000 synthetic chemicals. That’s according to a new report, which comes as the Department of Public Health issued a new PFAS-contamination alert following the crash of a vintage aircraft with 13 people onboard Wednesday morning.

Chris Fifield-Smith / Creative Commons

A third Connecticut resident has died from EEE, and another person has been diagnosed with the illness, state officials announced Tuesday.

Dr. Matthew Cartter, state epidemiologist of the Department of Public Health, said in a statement that a person from East Haddam between 60 and 69 years old died during the third week of September from the mosquito-borne illness.

Northeast Heating Oil Industry Looks To Biodiesel To Reduce Carbon Emissions

Oct 1, 2019
Joe Mabel / Creative Commons

The Northeast heating oil industry plans to begin pressing New England states to mandate certain standardized levels of biodiesel content in home heating oil.

At an industry summit in Rhode Island on Sept. 19, member companies of the New England Fuel Institute and related companies voted unanimously in favor of a resolution to work toward a 15% reduction in carbon emissions by 2023, 40% by 2030, and net-zero carbon emissions by 2050.

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