Environment

The Colin McEnroe Show
3:36 pm
Mon September 10, 2012

Hooking-Up To Power

Flickr Creative Commons, couscouschocolat

I did not participate in "hookup culture" when I attended Yale University. There were many reasons for that. World War I. The Russian Revolution.

Also, nobody wanted to have sex with me.

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Where We Live
11:00 am
Fri September 7, 2012

The Renaissance of the Connecticut Farm

NatalieMaynor

After years of decline, Connecticut farms are on the rise, and they’re smaller, more diverse, and more self-sufficient than ever before.

It seemed for a long while that Connecticut farms were going out with the 20th century as more and more farms were being plowed under to make way for new suburban housing and commercial development.

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Where We Live
10:31 am
Thu September 6, 2012

Warming Ocean Waters

NOAA (Wikimedia Commons)

Ice in the Arctic Ocean is at a record-setting low this summer - covering less of the sea, and melting at a more rapid rate than ever. Although climate change skeptics rail about Al Gore’s stranded polar bears, the melting of Arctic ice is - scientifically - really real...

Over 30 years, the area it covers has dropped by about half. It’s also not as thick as it used to be, which means it melts more rapidly. 

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Where We Live
10:30 am
Wed September 5, 2012

Taking a Ride Down the Connecticut River

Bongaboo, Creative Commons

It flows from the upper reaches of New Hampshire through the heart of New England...and winds its way through our state - twisting, turning, sometimes flooding, and eventually emptying into Long Island Sound.

The 410-mile-long Connecticut River was recently designated America’s first National Blueway.

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Where We Live
11:00 am
Thu August 30, 2012

Connecticut's Space Case

Royalty-free image collection

Two stories this summer have had us thinking about the stars... and a bit about our own backyard.  

The death of Neil Armstrong - the first man to walk on the moon - has made many nostalgic for a time when the American space program captured the world’s imagination.  The local connection?  

The iconic Apollo spacesuit was designed by Connecticut’s own Hamilton Standard.  That company - now Hamilton Sunstrand - just announced job cuts at its aerospace division.

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Transportation
6:08 pm
Mon August 27, 2012

Will the Future of Rail Travel Include Metro-North?

WalkingGeek (Flickr Creative Commons)

There’s talk of Hartford to New York in half an hour. New York to Boston in 90 minutes. Tunnels under the Long Island Sound zipping trains across the region. It’s exciting stuff. But here in Connecticut, many are saying, ‘wait a minute. First thing’s first.’

“We don’t have money today to run the railroad that we operate – or try to operate – today," says Jim Cameron.

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Recycling
6:01 pm
Mon August 27, 2012

Bridgeport Recycling Facility Hungry For More Mattresses

Neena Satija

A mattress recycling factory in Bridgeport is bringing jobs to those who need them – while disposing mattresses in an environmentally-friendly way. WNPR’s Neena Satija reports on Park City Green.

44-year-old Angel Morales is surrounded by piles and piles of old mattresses. His job is to deconstruct them using his hands and a utility blade.

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Butterflies to Cooler Climates
11:17 am
Thu August 23, 2012

The Climate Change Effect On Butterflies?

Tlindenbaum (Flickr Creative Commons)

The makeup of butterfly populations in the Northeast has changed dramatically in the last two decades, according to a new study. That's because global warming is driving butterflies to cooler climates farther north.

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Bugs Bite
12:30 pm
Wed August 22, 2012

Itchy, Annoying and Sometimes Deadly Mosquitoes

Trindade.Joao

Mosquitoes are one of those things that we learn to deal with. We put the bug spray on, light the citronella candle, and try to keep the itching to a minimum. But for some people, those skeeters are deadly.

Yesterday, the Dallas, Texas region saw its 11th death of the year from the West Nile Virus. More than 200 people have been infected by the disease. And here in Connecticut, officials announced the first case of West Nile last week. The Agricultural Experiment Station has found mosquitoes carrying the virus in dozens of towns across Connecticut.

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Trees
8:38 am
Mon August 20, 2012

Connecticut State Task Force: Municipalities Should Do More Tree Maintenance and Care

Courtesy State Vegetation Management Task Force

A report on how to manage the trees alongside Connecticut's roads is expected to be released this week.

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Take a Hike!
9:15 am
Thu August 16, 2012

Appalachian Trail in Connecticut Gets Renewed Agreement for Maintenance

Scott Lawler (Flickr Creative Commons)

Hikers visiting the Appalachian Trail this summer may not realize how much coordination goes into maintaining the 2,180-mile trail that winds through 14 states.

A memorandum of understanding was signed in Connecticut earlier this summer to outline just how coordination on the Appalachian Trail will occur over the next ten years. It was signed by the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection, the Department of Community and Economic Development, the State Police, and the Department of Transportation.

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Warm Water
9:07 am
Tue August 14, 2012

Millstone Power Station Shuts Down a Reactor Due to Warm Water in Long Island Sound

kestrana (Flickr Creative Commons)

Connecticut's Millstone nuclear power plant shut down one of two units on Sunday, not because of any problems at the plant, but because the sea water used to cool the plant is too warm. Unit 2 may not take in water warmer than 75 degrees Fahrenheit, and the water has been averaging closer to 77.

"All summer long, Long Island Sound temperatures have been higher than historical," Ken Holt, Dominion spokesperson, said today. "This morning, the 24-hour average temperature for service water at Unit 2 is 75.7 degrees."

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Nuclear Power
11:51 am
Mon August 13, 2012

Powering Connecticut

Dave L. (Wikimedia Commons)

In the wake of the Fukushima nuclear crisis in Japan, Germany is undertaking a massive effort to eliminate its eight nuclear power plants. It will rely on more wind and solar power, and less on coal.

The Germans may spend as much as $250 billion over the next several years just to get this plan started. Japan, meanwhile, despite a worried public, is still considering how much nuclear power they want to have part of their future energy mix.

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The Colin McEnroe Show
5:49 pm
Thu August 9, 2012

Live From A Forest: Discussing Hiking, Archaeology, Invasives & Connecticut's Trails

Chion Wolf

There are more than 800 miles of Blue-Blazed Hiking Trails in Connecticut. Today we're doing our show from one of them. 

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Downpour
11:39 am
Tue August 7, 2012

Report Cites 73 Percent Increase in Extreme Downpours Over 65 Years

Pridatko Oleksandr (Wikimedia Commons)

Tropical Storm Irene, record snowfalls in 2011, and a freak snowstorm last October: even in a part of the country that has unpredictable weather, Connecticut has had its share of extreme weather in the last few years.

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Environment
3:57 pm
Fri August 3, 2012

Stamford Ramps Up Efforts To Test Groundwater For Pesticides

YVSREDDY (Wikimedia Commons)

Stamford is ramping up efforts to test private wells for potentially cancer-causing pesticides that may be in the water. But getting the word out is a slow process, and so far, surrounding towns haven’t shown much concern.

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Fish Ladder Included!
2:14 pm
Wed August 1, 2012

One Dam Comes Down and Another Goes Up

jimflix! (Flickr Creative Commons)

The name Anguilla Brook is actually taken from the genus name for the American eel, Anguilla rostrata. But eels have been scare in the stream for decades, in part to an old dam that has blocked the eel and alewife from migrating upstream. Now, thanks to a grant from the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, that dam will be removed, and replaced with a new dam a half mile upstream that will include a fish ladder. 

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Lobster Harvest
2:21 pm
Mon July 30, 2012

Depleted Long Island Sound Lobster Harvest Hurts Commercial Industry

Decumanus (Wikimedia Commons)

Environmental advocates and Connecticut lobstermen are calling on state and federal lawmakers to do more to restore the health of Long Island Sound. As WNPR's Lucy Nalpathanchil reports, the state's commercial lobster industry has been hit hard by a severely depleted lobster harvest.

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Suburban Life
10:34 am
Wed July 25, 2012

Suburbs 4.0

Toronto Map Company (Wikimedia Commons)

Our federally-funded highway system has been called the greatest public subsidy to private real estate in history. Where’s that real estate? The suburbs. 

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Less Is More
3:06 pm
Fri July 20, 2012

Discussing "Pocket Neighborhoods" in New Haven

The economy and environmental concerns are slowly reversing the trend of suburban sprawl and embracing concepts such as pocket neighborhoods – or groups of smaller houses clustered around a shared space, like a park or community garden. An architect who has revived the concept in the past 20 years shared his views in New Haven last night.

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Latest Report
1:55 pm
Thu July 19, 2012

Recent Report Reflects Latest Climate Change Views

CC-BY (Wikimedia Commons)

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The Colin McEnroe Show
3:25 pm
Wed July 18, 2012

In America, Corn is King

Perry McKenna

This is a strange time in the life of corn. The 2012 US corn crop is getting smaller by the hour because of the terrible heat and drought in the Midwest. It's difficult to know what that means, because from a certain perspective, this country produces way too much corn. 

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Fairfield County
10:46 am
Thu July 12, 2012

State, Bridgeport Wrestle With Hot Issue; Coal, Or No Coal?

Neena Satija

As the nation sheds the idea of “clean coal” for plentiful and even cleaner natural gas, environmental activists are hoping that they can push Connecticut to abandon coal as a power source. But that’s easier said than done.

The Bridgeport Harbor Station has been a fixture in this city for decades. Now primarily a coal-burning plant, it’s one of the city’s biggest taxpayers, and it's capable of powering about half a million customers. For Tamara Wood, who lives down the street from the plant, it’s this sound. 

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Coming Home Project
6:27 pm
Tue July 10, 2012

The Home That Jewett City Built

Lucy Nalpathanchil WNPR

Originally aired on NPR's "All Things Considered"

This month, more than a dozen homeless veterans will finally have a place to call their own thanks to the American Legion. A local Post in a small Connecticut town has been working for a decade on a unique project to create not transitional, but permanent supportive housing in their rural community. 

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Beetle Under Bark
12:31 pm
Tue July 10, 2012

Emerald Ash Borer Creeps Towards Connecticut

Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (Creative Commons)

Connecticut's Ash Trees have been spared infestation from an invasive insect so far this summer. But trees along the New York border with Connecticut haven't been as lucky.

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Environmental Protection
10:53 am
Fri July 6, 2012

Negotiations Toward A Global Mercury Treaty Continue In Uruguay

Seth Tisue (Wikimedia Commons)

Delegates from more than 120 governments around the world gathered in a small seaside town in Uruguay this past week.  A Fairfield University Associate Professor was there to observe the continuing negotiations toward a global treaty reducing mercury emissions to the environment.

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Contamination
11:16 am
Thu July 5, 2012

Pesticides Found In Stamford's Well Water

YVSREDDY (Wikimedia Commons)

State and local health officials are asking residents with private wells to get their water tested for possible contamination. This time the sources aren’t the usual chemicals. As WNPR’s Neena Satija reports, they’re pesticides that were used in the soil decades ago, and are now believed to be a risk to human health.

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Geography
9:44 am
Thu June 28, 2012

Sea Levels Rising Fastest in a "Northeast Hot Spot"

NASA (Wikimedia Commons)

Scientists from the U.S. Geological Survey say that in the past 20 years, the sea level has risen more in an area they call the "Northeast hot spot" than anywhere else on the continent, a finding they say was unexpected.

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Strong Sense of Community
11:52 am
Tue June 19, 2012

Green Haven, a Cohousing Neighborhood, Planned in Bethany

Joe Mabel (Wikimedia Commons)

More and more cohousing neighborhoods are cropping up nationwide. These are intentionally planned neighborhoods committed to a strong sense of community. A group of Connecticut residents have gathered together, hoping to create Connecticut's first cohousing neighborhood, called Green Haven.

Green Haven is in the planning stages. Jack Nork, one of the participating residents, joined us to tell us about it.

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The Colin McEnroe Show
3:45 pm
Mon June 18, 2012

Attack Of The Invasive Species

prilfish, Flickr Creative Commons

The problem with invasive species is, of course, that they compete for resources with local species, and sometime they're a lot better at it. and sometimes they just incidentally wipe something out. 

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