Environment

Environment
9:40 am
Mon February 24, 2014

New Website Helps People Learn About And Plan For Climate Change

University of Rhode Island
Credit RIPR FILE

A team at the University of Rhode Island has launched a website about climate change and its impacts to our state. The website, Rhode Island's Climate Change: Waves of Change, is designed for a range of people: from high school students to parents to business people.

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Environment
8:20 am
Mon February 24, 2014

Deepwater Wind Hearing Today On Block Island

A wind farm is proposed for the waters off the coast of Block Island.
Credit Catherine Welch / RIPR

A subcommittee of the Coastal Resources Management Council will hold another hearing today on Deepwater Wind's permit application to build a wind farm off the coast of Block Island.

This is the second of three scheduled hearings this month.

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Environment
12:53 pm
Fri February 21, 2014

Chafee Signs Order Creating Climate Change Council

Governor Lincoln Chafee signs order creating climate change council.
Credit Ambar Espinoza / RIPR

Governor Lincoln Chafee signed an executive order this morning to create a state climate change council. The council will advise the governor, the general assembly, and the public on a strong state strategy to address climate change threats.

Chafee says the earth's warming climate has already hit Rhode Island hard with Superstorm Sandy and the extreme floods of 2010. Those floods caused millions of dollars in damage to homes and businesses, including to the West Warwick Regional Wastewater Treatment Facility, where Chafee signed the executive order.

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Environment
5:34 pm
Thu February 20, 2014

New Grants Available For Farming And Fishing

"We recognize that local seafood is part of the overall food system," said Ken Ayars, chief of the division of agriculture at the DEM. "We want to put time, effort, and money into supporting that component of the local food system, just like we do with land-based agriculture."
Credit Ambar Espinoza / RIPR

Small and beginning farmers and fishermen have until April 1 to apply for new grant money available to help them grow and promote their businesses.   

The governor’s office and the Department of Environmental Management announced a new program with more than $200,000 in grants to make the state’s local food system stronger. The grant program was established by the Local Agriculture and Seafood Act (LASA) of 2012.

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Environment
4:20 pm
Wed February 19, 2014

Quonset Business Park To Welcome Another Solar Company

Bella Energy solar panels in Lafayette, Colorado.
Credit Courtesy of Bella Energy

The Quonset Development Corporation has given a Colorado-based renewable energy company, Bella Energy, the green light to build a solar farm.

The solar farm will sit on an acre and a half, out of the five acres Bella Energy will lease.

Ted Kresse, spokesperson for the Quonset Development Corporation, said the land Bella Energy will lease is not fit for industrial development, but works for solar projects.

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Environment
5:30 am
Wed February 19, 2014

Deer Culling On Block Island Begins Next Week

Credit Kristin Gourlay / RIPR

Professional sharpshooters will descend on Block Island next week to cull the island’s deer population.

The Connecticut-based company hired to cull the deer population has been scattering bait since early February to lure deer to specific areas around Block Island.

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Environment
3:19 pm
Fri February 14, 2014

Deepwater Wind Awards Another Contract

The Bold Tern installing Alstom's HaliadeT 150 6 megawatt wind turbine offshore demonstrator turbine in Belgium. This is the same type of wind turbine Alstom will supply to Deepwater Wind.
Credit Copyright: Alstom / Nicolas Jobs

Deepwater Wind has selected a Norwegian company to carry and install the turbines for the Block Island offshore wind farm project. This is the second contract Deepwater has awarded recently.

The Norwegian company, Fred. Olsen Windcarrier, is supplying what’s called a liftboat to install the wind turbines. The liftboat, called the Bold Tern, has a large open deck and cranes robust enough to manage the weight and size of a wind turbine while at sea.

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Environment
8:52 am
Tue February 11, 2014

Local Environmental Leaders Call For Better Water Management

Environmental agency directors and city managers focused on the urgent need to invest in wastewater infrastructure, stormwater management, and flood prevention at a meeting last night.

The nonprofit Save The Bay hosted its annual legislative briefing.  Executive director Jonathan Stone said many groups are working together to ensure the general assembly approves Gov. Lincoln Chafee's 75-million-dollar clean water bond.

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Environment
3:53 pm
Mon February 10, 2014

Deepwater Wind And Alstom Sign Major Agreement For Block Island Wind Farm

Credit RIPR File

Deepwater Wind selected the French company Alstom to supply its wind turbines for the Block Island offshore wind farm project.

According to a company press release, Deepwater Wind made an initial multi-million dollar payment to Alstom back in December, so that the French manufacturer could begin to build the turbines.

Alstom will supply Deepwater Wind with five 6 megawatt turbines, including tower sections for the wind farm. Construction of the turbines marks a major milestone for the project.

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Local Feature
5:45 am
Mon February 10, 2014

Could Johnston Be In The Forefront Of Losing Farmland?

Ambar Espinoza RIPR

A property in Johnston is the latest target in the fight to save Rhode Island's farmland from development. It's an issue that pits the rights of property owners against concerns about preserving green space. In this case, the application to change the zoning ordinance on the farmland has come to a temporary halt, as the owner considers his options. He's in talks with the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management about how to move forward. Rhode Island Public Radio’s environmental reporter Ambar Espinoza joined Elisabeth Harrison in the studio to share more details.

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