Environment

Piping Plovers Could Be Harder To Find This Summer

Jan 5, 2017
Joel Trick / USFWS / Creative Commons License

Bird lovers may see a lot less of the Piping Plover on beaches in Rhode Island and around New England this summer. The little black-and-white shorebirds’ winter habitat in the Bahamas was hit hard by Hurricane Matthew last year, and that may have taken a heavy toll on the birds.

Piping Plovers were already considered threatened in Connecticut -- they’ve been hurt by shoreline development and careless beachgoers. But their winter vacation spot in the Bahamas has no human development, just thousands of other piping plovers from all over North America.

Ceyhun (Jay) Isik / Creative Commons License via Flickr

Woonsocket officials say they will carefully consider a proposal from a power plant company to buy water from municipal supplies. The city will also consider the concerns of residents.

Virginia Institute of Marine Science / Creative Commons License via Flickr

 

There’s some good news for sushi lovers. A new report finds that over an 8-year period, mercury levels in Gulf of Maine tuna declined 2 percent a year — a decline that parallels reductions in mercury pollution from Midwest coal-fired power plants.

Two years ago, Dr. Nicholas Fisher, a professor of marine sciences at Stony Brook University in New York, had a bit of luck — he found out that a colleague had established a collection of 1,300 western Atlantic bluefin taken from the Gulf of Maine between 2004 and 2012.

Ambar Espinoza / RIPR

After more than a year of work, Rhode Island’s climate change council has finalized a plan to reduce this state’s greenhouse gas emissions.

This week, President Obama announced what he called a permanent ban on offshore oil and gas drilling along areas of the Arctic and the Atlantic seaboard.

Ambar Espinoza / RIPR

It’s been nearly two years since the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management and the Attorney General filed a lawsuit against a metal recycling company on the Providence waterfront for allegedly failing to comply with environmental protection laws.

RIPR File Photo

It’s been a big week for wind energy. The nation’s first offshore wind farm is up and running off the coast of Block Island. And another Rhode Island wind company just scored a grant from the National Science FoundationAquanis is a tech company trying to improve the efficiency of wind turbines. We introduce you to the wind energy company you may not know about.

Ambar Espinoza / RIPR

The company proposing to build a power plant in Burrillville is tapping into the city of Woonsocket for water to cool the plant. 

SayCheeeeeese / Creative Commons License

 

Connecticut is home to several fuel cell manufacturers whose products are competitive on the global market. But state officials still overlooked fuel cell technology in its latest round of picks for clean energy development.

The big winners were wind and solar. Connecticut's Department of Energy and Environmental Protection gave the green light to proposals in Connecticut, New York, Massachusetts, Vermont, Maine, and New Hampshire.

Ryan Caron King / New England News Collaborative

The nation’s first offshore wind farm is officially connected to the electric grid, Deepwater Wind announced today.

President Obama’s National Ocean Council has approved the nation’s first ocean plans for the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic regions.

Sen. Whitehouse Slams Trump's EPA Pick

Dec 7, 2016
Courtesy Sheldon Whitehouse office

President-elect Donald Trump has nominated Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt to serve as Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency.

Co-Chair of the U.S. Senate Climate Action Task Force  Senator Sheldon Whitehouse says he’s disheartened by the choice. He says Pruitt denies the reality of climate change. And the attorney general was among those who sued the EPA over its Clean Power Plan to mitigate climate change.

Ambar Espinoza / RIPR

The new wind farm would be located off the coast, about 17 nautical miles northeast of Ocean City, Maryland. If approved, construction for the project -- dubbed the Skipjack Wind Farm -- would begin as early as 2020, and produce 120 megawatts of power. That's four times more than the Block Island Wind Farm is expected to produce.  

Deepwater Wind is in the early stages of developing a 90 megawatt offshore wind farm 30 miles east of Montauk New York, scheduled to start operating in 2022.  

Ambar Espinoza / RIPR

In Washington, grassroots groups are calling on Congress to investigate the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. Critics say this agency, in charge of regulating interstate transmission of oil, natural gas and electricity, is ineffective in vetting proposals for pipelines and liquefied natural gas facilities.

Kenvor Cothey

A video from Cape Cod provides a rare glimpse of what causes some great white sharks to wash ashore on area beaches. Cape resident Kenvor Cothey captured the video over the weekend, showing a shark hunting a seal  close to shore and nearly endangering itself in the process.  

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