Polar vortex is a phrase you've probably heard a lot, but what does it actually mean?
"I think, sometimes, people sort of misunderstand the polar vortex and they think it's this giant amoeba of cold that sits over the North Pole that just gets dislodged and heads right over Chicago," said Ryan Hanrahan, meteorologist at NBC Connecticut. "That's not really what happens."
Originally published on Tue November 11, 2014 10:12 am
Humans have never landed anything on a comet's surface. That may change tomorrow.
The European Space Agency's Rosetta mission is poised to send out a small probe to land on a comet known as 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko. Rosetta spent 10 years chasing the comet before arriving in August.
One of the most basic functions of local government is to protect its citizens. We talk with a panel of local firefighters who do just that.
When a fire breaks out, many Connecticut towns have volunteer forces that go to the rescue. What draws firefighters to this profession that includes a lot more than just fighting fires? Some Connecticut firefighters are even taking it a step further, and are going out west to help fight forest fires.
Paul Bogard, the author of the paperback, The End of Night, went on a journey in search of something rare in America and Europe—true darkness. He wanted to have the jaw-dropping experience of looking up at the night sky to see uncountable stars and planets that we seldom see due to light pollution.
The state's wildlife action plan aims to provide management options for animals and plants that don't quite qualify for federal protection. Take for instance the Northern Long-eared bat or New England Cottontail rabbit. They're not listed on federal endangered species lists, but their numbers have dropped in recent years due to things like disease and habitat loss.
Kevin Burgio remembered the first time he saw monk parakeets. He was out bird watching "and I ran across this puddle that had like five or six monk parakeets drinking from it," he said. "I'm like, what the hell is that? Did someone lose, like, five parrots? I didn't know there were parrots here."
Last month, hundreds of thousands showed up for the People’s Climate March in New York City, the largest climate march ever seen in U.S. history. There, climate activists worked their way through the busy streets of New York, calling on Americans to act on global climate change. Today, we talk to someone who was at the march. We’ll also preview today’s Climate Stewardship Summit at the University of St. Joseph.
Also, radio personality Gerri Griswold and Icelandic singer-songwriter Lay Low join us to talk about the upcoming Iceland Affair and Fire and Ice Music Festival.
The Connecticut Energy Marketers Association is a trade group representing about 600 heating oil and propane dealers. In a complaint, it alleges the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection didn't adequately assess the environmental impact of Governor Dannel Malloy's Comprehensive Energy Strategy, which plans to add 900 miles of natural gas pipelines in the state.
When you think of environmentally beneficial landscapes, the land beneath power lines might not be at the top of your list, but new research is highlighting this habitat's importance in conserving a wide array of plant and insect life.
Originally published on Tue October 7, 2014 12:49 pm
A trio of scientists, two from Japan and one from the U.S., will share the Nobel Prize in physics for the invention of blue light-emitting diodes (LEDs), which led to a new, environmentally friendly light source.
Isamu Akasaki and Hiroshi Amano of Japan and U.S. scientist Shuji Nakamura were selected by the committee of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences to share the 8 million Swedish kronor ($1.1 million) prize.
Originally published on Thu October 2, 2014 9:14 am
Manhattan's Central Park is surrounded by one of the densest cities on the planet. It's green enough, yet hardly the first place most people would think of as biologically rich.
But a team of scientists got a big surprise when they recently started digging there.
They were 10 soil ecologists — aka dirt doctors. Kelly Ramirez from Colorado State University was among them. "We met on the steps of the natural history museum at 7 a.m. with our collection gear, coolers and sunblock," she recalls.
A proposed rule change seeks to better define what waters are protected by the Clean Water Act, the law regulating pollution discharges into American water.
As written, the Clean Water Act currently applies to waters with a "significant nexus" to "navigable waters," a bit of legalese that's made it tough for regulators to crack down on pollution in some small tributaries.
Science writer Carl Zimmer names the Dodo and the Great Auk, the Thylacine and the Chinese River Dolphin, the Passenger Pigeon and the Imperial Woodpecker, the Bucardo and Stellar Sea Cow among the species that humankind has driven into extinction. What's notable about that list is that most of us would recognize maybe three or four of those names.
Think about that. We have obliterated entire species whose names we don't even know.
Allan Borghesi wanted to rezone about 60 acres in New Hartford and Canton from "residential" to "industrial" and, earlier this summer, it looked like the deal was a sure bet. New Hartford signed off on the proposal in June, but opposition in Canton grew in the interim -- organizing itself on Facebook and through petitions. Now, Borghesi has withdrawn his request.
Twenty years ago, public perceptions of Long Island Sound weren't good. Mark Tedesco is director of the EPA's LIS office, and during a recent public hearing, he recapped some editorial cartoons from that time.
It’s an hour for the birds! We are joined by bird lovers and experts to discuss the state of the bird population in our state and to answer your burning bird questions. We also check in with our environmental reporter Patrick Skahill about his recent bird-related reporting.
Last weekend's climate change march brought thousands of protesters to New York City. A new bill now making its way through the U.S. Senate is also aiming to reduce the impact of so-called atmospheric "super pollutants."
Originally published on Wed November 12, 2014 1:29 pm
The tiny, island nation of Iceland is in the middle of a growth spurt. For the past month, the country's Bardarbunga volcano has been churning out lava at a prodigious rate. And the eruption shows no signs of abating.