Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker today announced funding awards for rental housing development across the state and highlighted a pilot program to open new preschool classrooms.  He did both during a visit to Holyoke. 

Baker announced funding to build or preserve almost 1,500 apartments at 23 projects in 15 communities across the state. He made the announcement at one of the sites chosen—Lyman Terrace, a 76-year-old, 167-unit public housing complex in downtown Holyoke, where tenants fought a plan a few years ago to demolish their homes.

Meagan Racey / U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

A partnership to protect Connecticut's only native rabbit appears to be working, which means the New England cottontail will not need protection under the Endangered Species Act. 

Capture Queen / Creative Commons

America is getting older and Connecticut is getting grayer. By 2025, adults age 65 and up will populate at least 20 percent of almost every town in our state.

Developers of a proposed seven-turbine wind development in Swanton held an open house last week to allow the public to ask questions and get answers from experts.

At the meeting, a number of people raised concerns about potential impacts to water quality, and they have one high-profile supporter.


Deep underwater, about 150 miles off the coast of New England, lie majestic mountains and rock formations deeper than Arizona's Grand Canyon. The area is home too lots of marine life, and now, there's a new effort afoot to preserve that space. 

Nearly three years after Superstorm Sandy, some Rhode Island residents are still dealing with the aftermath. And it’s not just damage to buildings and property. These Rhode Islanders are struggling with mental illness related to stress. 

TANAKA Juuyoh flickr.com/photos/tanaka_juuyoh/6443984075 / Creative Commons

Some annual flowers just knock your socks off with their beauty. I remember a few years ago wandering through a greenhouse at White Flower Farm and being bowled over by their display of tuberous begonias. The flowers were perfect in a rainbow of colors with single and double flower shapes and some were even fragrant.

Nuclear Regulatory Commission flickr.com/photos/nrcgov/6517600977/ / Creative Commons

Federal regulators are halting a five-year study of the risk of cancer in communities around six U.S. nuclear plants and a nuclear fuel site, including two Connecticut nuclear plants.

Carl Safina

What, exactly, do animals think and feel? That's the question at the heart of a new book by Carl Safina, an ecologist who traveled to Kenya, the Pacific Northwest, and Yellowstone to research his latest work, Beyond Words.

Adam Frenier / NEPR

Decades after General Electric stopped improperly disposing industrial chemicals into the Housatonic in Pittsfield, Massachusetts, the 150-mile river remains contaminated, and the EPA continues to ban fishing. But one part of the river is getting a makeover.

Work is underway to remove the White Rock Dam on the Pawcatuck River, along the Rhode Island/Connecticut border.The dam was built in 1940.

The White Rock Dam is located seven miles from the mouth of the Pawcatuck River, near Westerly and Stonington, Ct. Dams have restricted its flow since before the American Revolutionary War. The current dam stands six feet tall and more than 100 feet long. 

Diver Dan Abbott unloads his scuba gear on a beach in Monterey, Calif. — his tank, flippers and a waterproof clipboard covered in tally marks. He spent the morning counting fish: pile perch, black perch, blue rockfish and kelp rockfish are among the 150 fish he spotted.

Abbott is diving with a team from Reef Check California, a group of volunteers doing underwater surveys by counting everything in the kelp forest in Monterey Bay.

One of the challenges to stemming the flow of pollution into Lake Champlain is that so much of runoff comes from disparate sources across the vast watershed. And one source of water pollution is hidden-in-plain-sight: roads.

A crowd of more than 30 people gathered at the town hall in Cabot this week to discuss the way Cabot Creamery gets rid of wastewater leftover from cleaning its plant. The cheese maker is asking the state to renew its permit to spray the liquid on land. The crowd was there for a hearing called by the Vermont Agency of Natural Resources to take public comment on a draft permit issued in June.

The Atomic Safety and Licensing Board has agreed with Vermont that a hearing is needed over the Vermont Yankee nuclear plant's use of money from its decommissioning fund for management of radioactive waste at the plant site.

Fish Stocks Rebound After Vermont Yankee Shutdown

Sep 4, 2015

A leading environmentalist says fish populations in the Connecticut River have rebounded after the shutdown of the Vermont Yankee nuclear plant.

Snowshoe Photography - Alaska / Creative Commons

When you're a scientist trying to count every tree on the planet, you need to prepare yourself for some good-natured ribbing. 

Wednesday night marked the first in a series of open houses during which Eversource is presenting its latest proposal for a power line that will connect the massive hydro-electric dams of Quebec all the way down to the town of Deerfield, New Hampshire.

Creative Commons

Watering is key during the hot, dry stretch of weather we're in right now. But one crop I don’t have to worry about in this heat is sweet potatoes.

Even as state and federal officials direct new money and staffing to water quality efforts across the state, the networks of pipes that bring water to and from Vermont homes and businesses are crumbling beneath their feet.

A proposal to erect two commercial wind turbines in Irasburg is drawing local opposition. But the developer, David Blittersdorf, says the project would benefit the entire state.

Close to $10 million in local, state, and federal money has been spent in the last couple of years to construct or renovate parks of all shapes and sizes in the city of Springfield, Massachusetts.  The projects have opened up new recreational opportunities, eliminated blight, and brought parks closer to the people.

Children this summer had a chance to cool off and play on a splash pad in one of Springfield’s newest parks.

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.

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.

gailhampshire/flickr creative commons

Kids head out the door to catch the school bus as the crispness of the early morning air begins to linger and that familiar wistful feeling sets in. The replacement of sticky, sun-drenched days and warm, song-filled nights marks the unofficial start of fall. It’s not just that the days are getting shorter and the colors are changing, or that the temperature is cooler and the air drier. With autumn comes the conclusion of the songs of summer — the chorus of night-singing insects. 

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.


A new investigation by WNPR reporter David DesRoches found that two-thirds of Connecticut schools could be contaminated with toxic PCBs. 

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.


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.

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.