Under RGGI, or the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, power-plants in nine Northeastern states, including New Hampshire, have had to cap carbon emissions for the past four years. Now, RGGI officials want to lower the caps, making utilities tighten up more, but there’s opposition to this in New Hampshire. We look at the arguments and what may happen next!
Grant Bosse - Lead Investigator for the Josiah Bartlett Center for Public Policy.
Sometimes, to make a surprising discovery, all you've got to do is strap on your snowshoes and step outside. That was the case when correspondent Sean Hurley ventured out to some familiar trails this past week:
The nine states that make up the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative are recommending reducing the cap on power-plant carbon emissions by 45%. The New Hampshire representative on the RGGI board is Tom Burack commissioner of of the DES.
Dear EarthTalk: What is “biomass” and why is it controversial as a potential source of energy?-- Edward White, New Bedford, MA
Biomass is plant matter that is burned as a source of energy. Fallen or cut wood that is burned for heat is one primary form of biomass, but another includes plant or animal matter that is converted into biofuels.
Pets ingest pollutants and pesticide residues and breathe in an array of indoor air contaminants just like children do -- and since they develop and age seven or more times faster than children, pets develop health problems from exposures much faster.
Dear EarthTalk: What are some tips for keeping my dogs and cats healthy?-- Kim Newfield, via e-mail
Believe it or not, our pets may be exposed to more harsh chemicals through the course of their day than we are. Researchers at the non-profit Environmental Working Group (EWG) found that pet dogs and cats were contaminated with 48 of 70 industrial chemicals tested, including 43 chemicals at levels higher than those typically found in people.
The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change reports that CO2 emitted by jets can survive in the atmosphere for upwards of 100 years, and that its combination with other gas and particulate emissions could have double or four times the warming effect as CO2 emissions alone.
For nearly a decade, New Hampshire has been seeking hundreds of millions of dollars from oil companies over the chemical additive MTBE, which the state says caused contamination in the state’s groundwater. The legal proceedings originally involved 26 oil companies; as trial began this week, there were just two left, ExxonMobil and Citgo, and now there may be just one.
Dear EarthTalk: I’ve heard of Eco-Tourism, but what on Earth is “Geo-Tourism? -- Sally Kardaman, Sumter, SC
“Geotourism” describes tourism that sustains or enhances the geographical character of a given place, including its environment, culture, aesthetics, heritage and the well-being of local residents. The idea is that tourism can be a positive force that benefits both travelers and local environments and economies.