Environment

Environment
6:22 pm
Wed May 14, 2014

Renewable Energy Program Produces Positive Economic, Environmental Impacts

The state's renewable energy fund and the program designed to stimulate the development of renewable energy projects in Rhode Island are producing positive outcomes: more jobs and less pollution. That's according to a recent report by the Rhode Island Office of Energy Resources.  

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Environment
6:51 am
Wed May 14, 2014

CRMC Unanimously Approves Deepwater Wind Block Island Wind Farm

Rhode Island is one step closer to having its first offshore wind farm. Last night, the Coastal Resources Management Council unanimously approved Deepwater Wind’s proposed wind farm three miles off the coast of Block Island.

The 30-megawatt wind farm with five turbines will produce enough energy to power 17,000 homes each year, according to Deepwater Wind estimates.

CRMC Executive Director Grover Fugate said the approval vote is “historic.” It’s the first time the CRMC grants a permit to build an ocean wind farm.

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Environment
8:50 am
Tue May 13, 2014

CRMC May Vote To Approve Deepwater Wind Project

The CRMC may approve a wind turbine project in Rhode Island.
Credit RIPR FILE

The Coastal Resources Management Council will discuss a subcommittee’s recommendation to approve Deepwater Wind’s proposed Block Island Wind Farm Tuesday. This may be another big vote for the project.

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Environment
8:44 am
Mon May 12, 2014

RI DEM Partnering With URI To Start Fisheries Institute

A newly created fisheries institute in Rhode Island will develop and take on new innovative and practical research projects. The institute is partnership between the Department of Environmental Management and the University of Rhode Island.

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Environment
4:12 pm
Thu May 8, 2014

Deepwater Wind Secures First Major Permit Approvals From RIDEM

Credit RIPR File Photo

The Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management has granted Deepwater Wind its first set of major permit approvals for the Block Island Wind Farm. This marks a significant milestone for the project.

The DEM has deemed the wind farm and underwater transmission cable in compliance with state and federal water quality regulations. So it issued the company Water Quality Certificates. The DEM also issued a Freshwater Wetland permit for certain onshore construction activities. 

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Environment
4:03 pm
Thu May 8, 2014

Gov. Lincoln Chafee Seeks Public Comments For Draft Climate Change Report

Gov. Lincoln Chafee and DEM Director Janet Coit, who also chairs the Executive Climate Change Council, released a draft report on how to prepare for climate change at a press conference at Bristol Town Beach.
Credit Ambar Espinoza / RIPR

The Executive Climate Change Council (EC3), recently established by Gov. Lincoln Chafee, released a preliminary report about how the state should prepare for climate change. The EC3 includes representatives from various state agencies, including the departments of health, environment, and transportation. 

Chafee said it’s important to tap into resources and talents across all sectors to develop coordinated statewide solutions to such threats as extreme weather events. Some of those steps may include moving roads, elevating buildings, or covering equipment.

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Environment
4:43 pm
Wed May 7, 2014

Deepwater Wind Proposes To Build The West Coast's First Offshore Wind Farm

Credit RIPR File Photo

Deepwater Wind has announced it’s proposing to develop the West Coast’s first offshore wind farm. The project is also poised to become the world’s first offshore project to use a floating foundation for the turbines.

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Environment
4:12 pm
Wed May 7, 2014

Deepwater Wind Adopts Additional Steps To Protect North Atlantic Right Whales

“We have seen the most significant aggregations of North Atlantic right whales ever documented right in Rhode Island Sound,” said Tricia Jedele, vice president and director of advocacy for Conservation Law Foundation’s Rhode Island office.
Credit National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

Deepwater Wind has agreed to adopt additional protective measures to minimize harm to the endangered North Atlantic right whales during the initial construction stages of its proposed wind farm in federal waters off the coast of Rhode Island and Massachusetts.

The company signed an agreement with Conservation Law Foundation (CLF), Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC), and the National Wildlife Federation (NWF), which collectively developed these extra protective measures.

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Environment
8:58 am
Wed May 7, 2014

Allergy Season Expected To Be Especially Harsh

White Pine tree branches, which are partly responsible for the especially harsh allergy season.
Credit Wikimedia Commons

Experts are predicting an unusually bad allergy season with high levels of pollen this year. They note that the cold and wet spring has delayed the onset of pollen production and will cause many types of plants to produce allergens at once. Professor Keith Killingbeck of The University of Rhode Island said he was surprised by the intensity of the allergen levels.

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Environment
4:10 pm
Tue May 6, 2014

New Female Peregrine Falcon Nesting Atop Superman Building Welcomes First Chick

The pink blob directly below this Peregrine falcon is a newly hatched chick with the eggshell close by.
Credit Screenshot of the Audubon Society of Rhode Island's Peregrine Webcam

The peregrine falcons nesting atop the Superman Building in downtown Providence have welcomed the first of their four chicks this week. A new female peregrine falcon has taken over the nest this year.

The Audubon Society of Rhode Island has been monitoring the nesting box atop the Superman building for more than 10 years. This year, staff noticed the female who had been nesting there since 2000 was displaced.

Jeff Hall, senior director of advancement, said no one knows whether the bird died of age or during migration, or whether she was outcompeted by a younger bird.

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