Environment

RIPR FILE

Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse has reintroduced carbon tax legislation to help reduce greenhouse gas emissions and boost the economy.

If approved, this revised carbon tax bill would start at $45 per ton starting next year, and increase each year by two percent.

A set of public lectures on how humans affect and respond to environmental changes kicks off this week at the University of Rhode Island. The Metcalf Institute for Marine & Environmental Reporting is hosting this annual series.

Ambar Espinoza / RIPR

Homeowners interested in switching to solar energy will soon have the option to do so with no upfront costs. The nation’s largest rooftop solar installer is coming to Rhode Island. Starting this week, California-based SolarCity will offer Rhode Islanders loans to buy home solar systems.

SolarCity will offer homeowners in 10 Rhode Island cities and towns loans to buy solar panels for their homes with no money down. Homeowners would pay for the loan in monthly installments, said Lee Keshishian, the company’s vice president for its East Coast operations.

J.T. Owens Park will soon be home to a small orchard, in tribute to a Providence neighborhood that once existed at the site. A group of local nonprofits and residents are planting the fruit trees today.

The West Elm neighborhood in the southwestern part of Providence was bulldozed in the early 1960s to build an industrial park. That displaced more than 500 families in one of the first racially integrated neighborhoods in the city, according to Holly Ewald, artistic director of UPP Arts, one of the groups organizing the event.

Todd Ugine / Cornell University Department of Entomology

Scientists have confirmed a sighting of a rare ladybug at Rocky Point in Warwick.  The nine-spotted ladybug, once common in the eastern U.S. has almost disappeared. Volunteers with the Rhode Island Natural History Survey found one of the ladybugs during an expedition last year.  Natural History Survey Executive Director David Gregg says Warwick is not a place he would have expected to make a scientific find.

    

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