Environment

Moose Plates

Dec 19, 2011

I admit to being a distracted driver at times, but it's not for the usual reasons. I'm looking for moose, but not the kind wildlife biologists usually look for. I'm looking for a small moose on car license plates.

For ten years now New Hampshire's moose license plates have raised significant funds for conservation of both historic and natural resources. Land has been conserved; loons and other endangered species protected; nature education brought into classrooms; historic buildings and covered bridges fixed up along with buildings in our state parks.

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EarthTalk®
E - The Environmental Magazine

 

Dear EarthTalk: Recycling can be a somewhat time-consuming task; so can you please provide some benefits of taking the time to separate my trash?                             -- Joseph Jiminez, Houston, TX

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EarthTalk®
E - The Environmental Magazine

Dear EarthTalk: Is it true that asthma rates in the U.S. have doubled in the last three decades? What's behind this troubling trend and what can we do to reverse it?                 -- Patrick, via e-mail

 

Tup Wanders / Flickr

Late last week, we posted a cool infographic, courtesy of the journalists at Stateline, taking a look at the percentage of each state’s GDP that’s made up by federal spending.  The group then subdivided federal spending into defense-related spending and everything else.

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EarthTalk®

E - The Environmental Magazine

Dear EarthTalk: I know that large fish contain a lot of mercury, but where does it come from? And what are we doing to prevent this contamination? -- Alison Bronner, Atlanta, GA

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EarthTalk®
E - The Environmental Magazine

Dear EarthTalk: Is it true that gas furnaces cost less to run and burn cleaner than their oil counterparts? If I make the switch, how long should I expect it to take for me to pay back my initial investment? And are there any greener options I should consider?  -- Veronica Austin, Boston, MA

 

A large tract of some of the North Country’s most beautiful terrain has been protected from development. 

A new conservation easement is going to protect land around Pittsburg and the Connecticut River.

“We just today finalized a conservation easement on 2,300 acres up in Pittsburg up around First and Second Connecticut Lakes.”

That’s Jack Savage. He’s a spokesman for The Society for The Protection of New Hampshire Forests.

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EarthTalk®
E - The Environmental Magazine

Dear EarthTalk: I heard that the less meat one eats, the better it is for the environment. How so?

                                                                                                                          -- Jason K., Sarasota, FL

 

Naturally Curious

Dec 2, 2011
<a href="http://naturallycuriouswithmaryholland.wordpress.com/category/december/">Mary Holland</a>

The natural world quiets down in December, both visually and audibly. Fall's riot of colors is long gone, and the bird song chorus is a distant memory. Not everyone embraces winter, but there is a positive way to view the impending season of cold, ice and snow. Without the overload of spring, summer and fall distractions, we're freed up to notice and appreciate the subtle winter world.

(Photo by <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/simplerich/2187363093/" target="_blank">Simple Rich</a> via Flickr Creative Commons)

“Clean Coal,” refers to technologies that reduce heavy metal, carbon and other emissions from the burning of coal. The development of technologies that could, potentially, filter greenhouse gasses and store CO2 permanently is moving ahead. This week, a large demonstration of clean coal technology is being staged in Illinois, testing the viability of so-called “carbon sequestration,” an important step in testing the potential of clean coal technology. 

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EarthTalk®
E - The Environmental Magazine

Dear EarthTalk: Thorium is a naturally occurring element that is supposedly more available, more efficient and safer to use than uranium for generating nuclear energy. Is this true and, if so, why haven’t we made the switch?                                                                    -- Jane Westermann, Austin, TX

Niall Napier via Flickr

EarthTalk®
E - The Environmental Magazine

 

Dear EarthTalk: I’ve heard of green roofs, but what are “green walls?” --P. Spencer, Alcoa, TN

 

Organic Bug

EarthTalk®
E - The Environmental Magazine

 

Dear EarthTalk: I would like to make my holiday gifts matter this year. Where can I find ideas for green gifts?                                                                                            --Mary Baumgartner, via e-mail

 

Crows of November

Nov 18, 2011
ipmckenna / Flickr/Creative Commons

Here's a bird song we all recognize, the familiar crowing of, yes, crows, a species with many vocalizations. Crows are one of the most intelligent animals in the wild, and a lot of intelligent people have come up with theories to explain why.

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EarthTalk®
E - The Environmental Magazine

Dear EarthTalk: How clear (or not) are the links between the rising incidents of cancers around the world and the prevalence of synthetic chemicals in modern society?-- Alberto Buono, Lee, MA

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EarthTalk®
E - The Environmental Magazine

 

Dear EarthTalk: I heard that species of flora and fauna are dying at a growing rate globally. How is this calculated and which types of species are dwindling faster?                    -- Colin Gooder, Franklin, NC

Chris Jensen / NHPR

A free environmental symposium dealing with topics including reinventing local farms, grassroots solar energy, the effect of acid rain on songbirds in the state and “agritourism” is planned at The White Mountain School in Bethlehem on the afternoon of Saturday, November 12th.

The goal is not just to provide presentations but give participants the tools they need to make changes in their communities and lives, said Elizabeth Lokey Aldrich, the chair of the Sustainability Studies Department at the school

(Photo by Ivan via Flickr Creative Commons)

Author David Rothenberg talks about the mystery of animal's preferences for particular colors, shapes, and songs in his book, Survival of the Beautiful.

EPA Holds Hearing On PSNH Power Plant

Nov 4, 2011

The Environmental Protection Agency held a public hearing on a new permit for PSNH’s coal-fired power plant in Bow.

The draft permit could force the utility to upgrade its cooling system to prevent fish kills.

The EPA says the Merrimack station power plant withdraws large quantities of water from the Merrimack River and returns it at much higher temperatures.

The agency says installing a more modern cooling system would reduce fish kills by 95-percent.

But it would also cost PSNH $112 million over a 20 year period.

Beavers

Nov 4, 2011
<a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/zaniac/">ZaNiaC</a> via Flickr/Creative Commons.

Like other species in North America, the beaver suffered when the Europeans arrived, but they've staged an impressive comeback.

Public Service of New Hampshire

New Hampshire environmental officials presented an updated report on the state of the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative to lawmakers Tuesday.

As NHPR’s Amy Quinton explains, the report reignites the debate over whether to keep the state in the carbon emission cap and trade program.

The report shows that program, known as RGGI, is working as designed.

Under the program, power plants buy an allowance for every ton of carbon dioxide they emit.

The Northern Pass electric project is searching for a new, less controversial path through the North Country.

But a small group of landowners is determined to block the utility’s plan even though it means giving up hundreds of thousands of dollars.

NHPR’s Chris Jensen reports.

Sound of piano music.

At 65 years of age Lynne Placey gives piano lessons.

She lives with a cat and a gray-muzzled dog in a small house in Stewartstown.

And she hopes she’s blocking the path of a corporate giant.

Rebecca Brown / Ammonoosuc Conservation Trust

Almost 1,100 acres of land in the North Country will be protected against development under a new conservation easement that will benefit loggers, people who enjoy the woods and perhaps most important of all – a devastated bat population. NHPR’s Chris Jensen reports.

The easement will permanently protect more than 1,000 acres of land on Gardner Mountain in Lyman.

It’s an important habitat for wildlife, but especially so for bats.

Emily Brunkhurst, a wildlife biologist with Fish and Game says bats gather in the area to mate.

From Alabama and Georgia north to the border with Canada, there are reports from all over the continental U.S. today about a fantastic show last night:

An intense geomagnetic storm that produced some of the best "Northern Lights" in recent memory, reports SpaceWeather.com.

Many folks are posting photos and videos. Here's one that the poster says was taken in Michigan.

Massachusetts is expected to announce new rules that will raise the bar on the definition of green energy.

NHPR’s Sam Evans-Brown reports that shift could cost NH electric producers millions of dollars.

Massachusetts is on track to pass new regulations aimed at cutting the amount of greenhouse gasses going into the atmosphere.

The focus is on power from biomass – basically, burning wood to make electricity.

Dwayne Breger of the Massachusetts Division of Energy Resources, says there are two good reasons to get the most out of every tree.

Treasure Hunting for a Wild Japanese Delicacy

Oct 13, 2011
Elaine Grant / NHPR

Because of a faraway tragedy, and a fluke of nature, the two men are learning a thing or two about the global economy – and about the fine line between passion and obsession.

If there were such a thing as a professional mushroom forager in New Hampshire, Keith Garrett would be it. So would Eric Milligan.

The two men have been hunting mushrooms in the Lakes Region for the last six years. More than 5,000 species of mushrooms have been identified in this region alone, but Milligan and Garrett are walking encyclopedias.

Brady Carlson, NHPR

The Northern Pass hydropower project from Quebec, which includes transmission lines through New Hampshire, has divided our state with passionate disagreement on the amount of energy it will bring, how badly that energy’s needed, and the economics of the project, including its affect on property values. We’ll talk to those on both sides of this debate.

Guests

Faced with strong, statewide opposition officials from Northern Pass say they are reworking parts of their plan, including finding a better route through the North Country. NHPR’s Chris Jensen reports.

NorthernPass officials say they want to change some important parts of their plan to bring 1,200 megawatts of hydro-electric power from Canada.

 Their possible changes include finding a new route between Canada and Groveton, one that will calm the furor in the North Country.

 Last month at least 2,300 people attended seven public hearings on the project.

Chris Jensen, NHPR

Transcripts of the seven public hearings on the Northern Pass project are now available at a web site operated by the U.S. Department of Energy, which conducted the meetings.

 1) Colebrook: http://www.northernpasseis.us/Document_Library/transcripts/03-19-2011%20NORTHERN%20PASS%20COLEBROOK%20HEARING.pdf

Urban Sprouts

Mar 24, 2011

A composite of the voices, poetry, and free-styles of young men who are residents in a youth detention facility located in the mountains south of San Francisco. The young men participate in a garden and nutrition education program with Urban Sprouts.

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