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Environment

Anthony Quintano / Creative Commons

When you think of evolution, you might picture the classic textbook illustration "March of Progress" by Rudolph Zallinger. It shows how, over 25 million years, our human ancestors slowly transform from hunched apes into modern homo sapiens. But now, thanks in part to roads and highways, lots of evolution happens much quicker than that.

Millstone Power Station

A bill that could change the way Connecticut's only nuclear power plant sells its energy is taking shape at the state capitol. Officials at Millstone Power Station are asking legislators to let them sell electricity directly to utilities.

305 Seahill / Creative Commons

Happy St. Patricks Day. I was tempted to talk about shamrocks or green carnations, but instead I'm talking about another green plant that's more Italian than Irish. It's the globe artichoke. 

AnneCN / Creative Commons

Tuesday’s winter storm packed a punch -- bringing some much-needed precipitation to Connecticut.

But was the wet weather enough to hoist the state out of a long-running drought? This hour, we find out and ask whether the region can expect to see consistent dry spells. 

pj_vanf / Creative Commons

Changes to Connecticut's "bottle bill" continue to be discussed by lawmakers. The debate centers around whether a recycling system developed decades ago is still viable.

This month, I ventured to ask the man behind the counter at a Whole Foods Market what kind of shrimp he was selling. "I don't know," he replied. "I think they're just normal shrimp." I glanced at the sustainable seafood guide on my phone. There were 80 entries for shrimp, none of them listed "normal."

What about the cod? Was it Atlantic or Pacific? Atlantic. How was it caught? I asked. "I'm not sure," he said, looking doubtfully at a creamy fish slab. "With nets, I think. Not with harpoons."

Updated at 1:20 p.m. ET

Two of the biggest cities standing in the way of Tuesday's nor'easter, New York City and Philadelphia, have lifted their blizzard warnings as the storm's path has shifted to the west and meteorologists have tempered their forecasts for the major urban areas.

Ryan Caron King / WNPR

A late season winter storm is expected to hit Connecticut early Tuesday. Officials at the state and local level began announcing parking bans and school closings on Monday. A statewide travel ban goes into effect at 5:00 am on Tuesday.

Dave Sizer / Creative Commons

Legislators in Hartford are considering a state-wide "carbon tax" on fossil fuels, which could impact utility customers, car drivers, and businesses in the state.

NOAA

Connecticut Sea Grant supports a wide range of environmental and educational activities in Connecticut, but could be eliminated under President Donald Trump's budget.

President Trump's head of the Environmental Protection Agency says he does not believe that carbon dioxide is a major cause of global warming.

"I would not agree that [CO2] is a primary contributor to the global warming that we see," Scott Pruitt said Thursday in an interview with CNBC's Joe Kernen.

Jean Barrell / Creative Commons

Connecticut is one the leading states for rooting out invasive species and encouraging land owners to plant more natives. Native trees, shrubs, perennials, and ground covers are adapted to our changing climate, interwoven in the ecology of the forests and open lands -- and provide vital food, shelter, and nesting sites for insects, birds, and animals.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

Environmental advocates are asking legislators to support a measure amending the state constitution. The move would require a public hearing and a two-thirds vote in both the House and Senate, whenever the state legislature wants to give away, swap, or sell public land.

Creative Commons / Community College of Vermont

Former Vermont Governor Pete Shumlin recently visited Wesleyan University to reflect on his career and discuss ways to combat climate change.

The Manic Macrographer / All Creative Commons

With the sudden change in weather going from snow storms to 70 degree temperatures, flowers are a bit confused. Although not spring yet, the warm spell pushed along some early flowering shrubs. And one of the earliest is the flowering quince. 

Turning Earth, LLC

Another company has gotten the green light to build a food recycling plant in Southington. The town's central location is making it a focal point for businesses looking to cash in on a growing market for old and expired food.  

On Thursday morning, law enforcement entered the Oceti Sakowin camp to do a final sweep before officially shutting it down, ending a months-long protest against the completion of the nearby Dakota Access Pipeline.

The Oceti Sakowin camp was the largest of several temporary camps on the northern edge of the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation in North Dakota. Protesters have been living on this land for months, in support of members of the Standing Rock Sioux.

NASA/JPL-Caltech

This week NASA announced the discovery of at least seven Earth-sized planets orbiting a single star. The next step is peering more closely at this unique system to search for signs of alien life.

Local law enforcement officers have arrested some people who chose not to evacuate federal land near part of the Dakota Access Pipeline north of the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation. Most protesters had left earlier. At dusk, police moved back, and said they would not enter the camp at that time.

ThunderUPforever / Creative Commons

With winter here, it's nice to have some outdoor garden activities that result in beautiful flowers. One activity I like is forcing flowering branches of spring blooming trees and shrubs indoors. Not only do you get beautiful color weeks before the natural bloom time, you prune your plants too. 

In North Dakota, authorities set Wednesday as the deadline for the dwindling number of protesters against the Dakota Access pipeline to clean up and go home.

At the main protest camp, a massive cleanup effort has been underway. Semi trucks have been hauling debris out of camp and people here are piling garbage into bags.

"It looks like a trash pile. But it's getting picked up and every spot is starting to look better and better as we work together," Dotty Agard of the Standing Rock Sioux tribe says as she sorts through abandoned goods.

Patrick Skahill / WNPR

In 2013, Connecticut's legislature passed a law requiring some businesses to recycle old food, but the rule has a catch: it only applies if a certified recycler is nearby -- and able to take it. The idea was to jumpstart a market for organic recycling in Connecticut. And now, more than three years later, the first of those new recyclers is set to come online.

On Jan. 25, President Trump signed an executive order instructing construction to begin on a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border. Environmentalists and civil rights activists say the proposed wall on the southern border with Mexico is a threat to the environmental rights of the people who live on both sides of the border.

Franco Folini / Creative Commons

This ancient vegetable hales from Southeast Asia. Laborers who built the pyramids in Egypt were paid with it. In Mexico a special night in December is dedicated to this veggie where they artistically carve the root. What vegetable is this? It's the radish. 

The proposed high-speed rail in the Northeast Corridor has hit a bump. After pushback from residents in Connecticut and Rhode Island, the Federal Rail Administration says it’s willing to modify the plan due to residents' worries that the new route would run right through historic districts.  

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