Environment

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  Woodstock Farm Sanctuary takes in – or works to place – farm animals who are victims of cruelty and neglect. Most of these animals are rescued during investigations of farms, stockyards, auctions, and slaughterhouses – others arrive from humane societies and SPCA cruelty cases.

After 10 years of doing their good work in Woodstock, they are moving to a new 150 acre location in High Falls, NY. The new space is a former camp and retreat center in the heart of the Hudson Valley -- just 20 minutes from New Paltz and 90 minutes from New York City.

With more than six times the space they had in Woodstock, the sanctuary will have the resources to rescue additional farm animals as well as to increase the scale and scope of the sanctuary’s public programming.

The sanctuary is celebrating their re-opening this Saturday, September 5th. Jenny Brown is the Co-Founder and Director of the Woodstock Farm Sanctuary and she joins us.

Patrick Cashin / Metropolitan Transportation Authority

Commuter rail advocates say transportation officials are improving service along the fast-growing Waterbury branch line on Metro-North Railroad, but commuters are being asked to review state plans for more upgrades.

At a festival on the Danish island of Fyn, Claus Holm, a fast-talking Danish celebrity chef, is sniffing and mixing into a pot of stew an ingredient he calls "totally forbidden." It's cream, and it expires today.

Danes' increasing willingness to buy and consume items like just-expired dairy products has helped make them, arguably, the world champions in the fight against food waste. According to a recent report from the Danish government, Danes now throw away 25 percent less food than they did five years ago.

Vetatur Fumare / Creative Commons

The Nissan NV200 minivan is now the new standard for New York City's yellow cabs.

Stephanie Rivkin / Facebook

State wildlife officials are still on the lookout for a black bear that was videotaped licking the leg of a hiker in Burlington, Connecticut.

In an era awash in the rollout of brand new gadgets, gizmos, fashions, and fads, it's easy to think of obsolescence as part of the natural order: Remember popped lapels, pay phones and laserdisc players? But the idea that an object should quickly fall from favor, lose functionality, and find itself in a landfill somewhere is quite new -- and it didn't come about by accident.

Photo courtesy of Page Technologies

The cities of New Haven and Waterbury and the Connecticut Department of Housing are receiving federal funds to help combat poisoning from lead-based paint in housing.

The World's Disappearing Natural Sound

Aug 31, 2015

With guest host Jane Clayson.

A legendary natural sound collector shares his recordings from around the world. We’ll listen in.

The White House announced Sunday that President Obama is changing the name of North America's highest peak.

Mount McKinley — named after William McKinley, the 25th president, who served in the White House until his assassination in 1901 — is returning to its traditional Alaska Native name, Denali.

Obama will make a public announcement of the name change in Anchorage Monday, during a three-day visit to Alaska.

Kinder Morgan Energy Partners, L.P.

A proposed project to upgrade and construct a natural gas pipeline from Pennsylvania to Massachusetts has many spurs, one of them stretching into parts of Connecticut.

We’re at an osprey nest in Tilton with Iain McLeod, director of Squam Lakes Natural Science Center. Our goal is recruiting another individual for Project OspreyTrack. He explains that Project OspreyTrack began in 2011, “to try to understand a little bit more about osprey migration and foraging.” 

Eversource

The parent company of Connecticut's nuclear plant and federal regulators have reached a settlement over the plant operator’s decision, without regulatory approval, to halt the use of a safety-related pump in the event of a severe accident.

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission on Thursday cited a "willful violation" for changes by Dominion Resources Inc. without a license amendment at its Millstone Unit 2 plant in Waterford.

Ken Holt, a Millstone spokesman, said Dominion does not agree that the violation was deliberate.

This is the long story of a short street: Schnell Drive, two blocks of brick homes in Arabi, La., just east of New Orleans in St. Bernard Parish.

When we first visited in the fall of 2005, Donald and Colleen Bordelon were often the only two people on Schnell Drive. They had stayed in their home through the storm and the flood, and through the weeks after when the first floor was still filled with water.

Updated at 11:05 p.m. ET

Tropical Storm Erika has caused extensive flooding and landslides on the eastern Caribbean island of Dominica, killing at least four people and cutting power and water to many residents.

The storm dumped 9 inches of rain on the mountainous island late Wednesday.

"The situation is grim. It is dangerous," Ian Pinard, Dominica's communications minister, was quoted by The Associated Press as saying.

Rosewoman / Creative Commons

This common flower's botanical name means “to sit,” probably for the way it creeps along rocks. It is also called rocky stonecrop in England for the way it's perched on cliffs. We know it as sedum.

U.S. Department of Agriculture

A Connecticut firefighter has returned home from fighting wildfires in California and he said unmanned aerial vehicles, or drones, are becoming a growing concern. 

Ryan Caron King / WNPR

The long-vacant Berkowitz Building in New Britain is soon to be developed into apartments and retail space. Standing outside it on Wednesday, Governor Dannel Malloy called for transit-oriented development along the CTfastrak busway route connecting the city directly to Hartford. 

David Scheel

The octopus has always been the stuff of spine-tingling legend, like that of the Kraken, the many-armed sea monster believed to drag ships to the bottom of the sea after dining on the crew. Or  Gertie the Pus, the giant Pacific octopus that lives under the Narrows Bridge connecting Tacoma, Washington to Gig Harbor.

In reality, the octopus is more benign but equally fascinating.  Did you know the octopus has two-thirds of its brain neurons distributed throughout its eight arms? Or, that the severed arm of an octopus can walk independently toward a food source and move it to where its mouth should be? 

Stephen Hawking, who once stunned the scientific community by saying that black holes emit radiation, expounded on another groundbreaking theory on Tuesday.

Ryan Caron King / WNPR

A few miles down the road from the University of Connecticut campus in Mansfield, Connecticut, an abandoned prison sits empty. It's shrouded from public view by a fence of vines and razor wire. 

Fishermen in the Gulf of Maine have been harvesting lobsters at record highs. That’s in contrast to fishermen in Southern New England, where there has been a sharp decline in the lobster population since the late 1990s. 

 

The Science of Sinkholes

Aug 24, 2015

This week a sinkhole in Interstate 93 near Concord prompted an emergency road closure and a major traffic jam. Despite the disruption it caused, the cavity doesn’t actually meet the definition of a sinkhole, but it maybe the sort of thing that the Granite State could see more of.

To answer how can a gaping hole suddenly appear in the ground, you need to start somewhere in the sky.

The workweek got off to a rough start for New Jersey rail commuters recently. A disabled train blocked one of the two rail tunnels under the Hudson River to Penn Station during the Monday morning rush hour.

Thousands of people were left scrambling to find another way into Manhattan.

"This really sucks," said Ira Kaplan of Basking Ridge, N.J. "Much worse than past summers."

Kaplan was among thousands of commuters who took a train to Hoboken, where they waited on sweltering platforms for another train to New York.

Martin Fisch / Creative Commons

The 2016 edition of The Old Farmer’s Almanac, which released its seasonal forecast this week, predicts an unusually harsh winter for the northeast. But a Connecticut meteorologist called the almanac an unreliable source, and said science doesn't really allow for fine-tuned predictions so far in the future.

Dave / Creative Commons

Our basil, oregano, thyme, and parsley herbs are going to town in the garden. But what do we do with all these herbs?

It's official. Tropical Storm Danny has made the leap, becoming the first hurricane of the Atlantic season as it makes its way toward the eastern Caribbean.

Currently, the storm is centered about 1,200 miles east of the Lesser Antilles and moving west at 10 mph. The National Hurricane Center's "forecast cone" has Hurricane Danny making landfall possibly as far north as Puerto Rico or as far south as St. Lucia.

The storm currently has sustained winds of nearly 75 mph, with higher gusts.

The natural world is abuzz with the sound of animals communicating — crickets, birds, even grunting fish. But scientists learning to decode these sounds say the secret signals of African elephants — their deepest rumblings — are among the most intriguing calls any animal makes.

Chris Burke flickr.com/photos/thirdworld / Creative Commons

Connecticut's environmental commissioner has endorsed a U.S. Army Corps of Engineering plan to dump dredged materials from waterways and harbors into areas of Long Island Sound. 

Ryan Caron King / WNPR

CT Transit buses throughout the state will soon be equipped with GPS devices, providing real-time bus location information to riders via smartphone.

Jessica Lucia flickr.com/photos/theloushe / Creative Commons

Hunting for fireflies at dusk is a staple of summertime fun, but for years, no knew exactly how the bugs emitted their signature glow. Now, new research claims to have the answer. 

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