Governor Gina Raimondo’s budget proposal includes some new initiatives for the environment, including a larger role for the state’s Clean Water Finance Agency. Rhode Island Public Radio’s environmental reporter Ambar Espinoza spoke with Rhode Island Public Radio's Elisabeth Harrison to discuss the environmental impact of the budget.
Lawmakers have put the breaks on legislation that could put trash incineration on the table at the Central Landfill. A committee voted to hold the bill for further study. The bill would remove language in a law that bans the Rhode Island Resource Recovery Corporation from including incineration in its statewide trash management plan. It would also remove any references to the high costs of incineration. This is the latest attempt to remove a ban on trash incineration.
The Aquidneck Land Trust has acquired 72 acres of land in Portsmouth to conserve as open space. The Land Trust recently purchased the parcel for $3 million. The scenic property at St. Mary’s Church includes 25 forested acres.
Land trust executive director Chuck Allott said the property at St. Mary’s Church includes forested land that neighbors St. Mary’s Pond, one of Aquidneck Island’s drinking water supplies. “So it's a very important drinking water, watershed protection parcel and it's also an important habitat property because of that forested land.”
Seals from Maine and the Atlantic Provinces of Canada start migrating to Narragansett Bay in October. But February is one of the best months for seal watching in Narragansett Bay. That’s when the number of migrating seals peaks, ranging between 300-500.
With 18 new members in the 113-seat General Assembly, On Politics is offering a periodic look at the latest additions to the House and Senate. We continue with state Representative Lauren Carson (D-Newport), who defeated three-term former Representative Peter Martin in the Democratic primary last September.
Occupation: Environmental policy analyst with Clean Water Action.
A new bill introduced at the general assembly could ban the use of plastic bags across the state. It’s the latest attempt to ban plastic bags in the last several years.
The bill would gradually phase out the use of plastic bags over the course of two years at retail stores such as grocery, and convenience stores. Over the past three years similar bills have some received public support, but failed in the General Assembly.
The U.S. Senate passed a bill approving construction of the Keystone XL pipeline Thursday. Rhode Island’s junior Senator Sheldon Whitehouse voted against the bill.
A vocal critic from the start, Whitehouse released a sharp statement following the bill’s passage. He calls the $8 billion dollar project a “disaster” for health and the environment. The Keystone project would construct a nearly 12-hundred mile pipeline to carry mainly oil from Canada to the Gulf Coast.
Whitehouse says the project would encourage dependence of fossil fuels, which exacerbate climate change.
Governor-elect Gina Raimondo plans to re-appoint Janet Coit as the director of the state Department of Environmental Management.
“During the past four years, Director Coit proved to be not only a strong advocate for the environment, but a skilled manager of a complex department,” Raimondo said in a statement. “I admire her passion for conserving our natural resources and am thrilled to have her continue her good work as a member of my cabinet.”
Coit's re-appointment is subject to confirmation by the state Senate.
Providence Business News Editor Mark Murphy joins Rhode Island Public Radio's Dave Fallon for our weekly business segment The Bottom Line.
This week Dave and Mark talk with Grow Smart Rhode Island executive director Scott Wolf. They discuss the bond measures passed on Election Day and the kinds of jobs they will create once the dollars start flowing.
When to Listen
You can hear The Bottom Line each Friday at 5:50pm.
On Tuesday, voters will not only vote on candidates running for public office, they will also vote on a series of bond issues--two of them related to the environment. As part of our Rhody Votes ’14 coverage, environmental reporter Ambar Espinoza joined Rhode Island Public Radio Morning Edition Host Elisabeth Harrison to talk about them.
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