Should state regulators be more aggressive in punishing first time violators of environmental law? That's a question the Council on Environmental Quality hopes lawmakers wrestle with in the upcoming legislative session.
I first realized that beavers were awesome back in the 1980's on a beaver observation tour led by an Acadia National Park ranger who looked in the most attractive way possible - like a beaver.
This is a theory of mine that I will not be bringing up to my guests on the show today. A high percentage of people who devote their lives to studying beavers resemble beavers. They have very nice overbites and they even fall into the habit of slapping their thighs with their hands the way a beaver slaps the water with his tail.
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.
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.
Originally published on Thu September 18, 2014 6:59 pm
Dan Reiter, 37, is a long-board surfer and contractor who used to live in Tampa, Fla. Then he discovered the surf breaks along a stretch of coast south of Cape Canaveral. "It's one of the most beautiful places in the world to live and surf and raise your kids," says Reiter, 37, as we watch head-high waves roll into Hightower Beach.
But there's trouble in this coastal paradise. It's on a low-lying barrier island that's getting lower as sea level rises. So the cities here are looking for ways to keep the water at bay or retreat from it.
A new report says nitrogen pollution discharged into Long Island Sound continues an overall decline. That's good news for marine life because too much nitrogen can fuel the growth of algae, which dies, settles on the ocean floor, and decays, using up oxygen in the process.
The former CEO of a New London company has pleaded guilty to violating the Clean Water Act. According to federal prosecutors, the infractions date back to 1986 and involve toxic discharges into the city's sewer system.
A new project at Eastern Connecticut State University is looking at arsenic contamination in privately-owned wells. The question of where that arsenic is coming from has attracted surprisingly little attention, until now.
In January, West Virginia’s Elk River was contaminated by a chemical spill from a nearby coal processing plant, affecting 300,000 local residents. People were without water for days. Now months later, is the water safe to drink?
Each time you go to turn on the faucet, flush the toilet, or water the lawn, you’re connecting yourself to a complex water system with nearly two and a half thousand years of history. The structure of our modern network of reservoirs, pipes, and drains owes much of its influence to designs dating back to ancient Rome.
Originally published on Tue January 14, 2014 7:08 pm
The mayor of Charleston, W.Va., says the company behind the chemical spill that essentially shut down his city for days was run by "a small of group of renegades," who in his opinion knew there were problems with the tanks that leaked dangerous chemicals into the city's water supply.
"I'm not even sure they cared what happened to the public," Danny Jones told Melissa Block on Tuesday's edition of All Things Considered.
Jones said he knows some of the people in charge of Freedom Industries and he considers them "to be a little edgy."
Originally published on Mon January 13, 2014 8:20 pm
On 'Morning Edition': Ashton Marra reports from West Virginia
Relief is finally arriving for the 300,000 or so people in nine West Virginia counties who haven't been able to drink, cook or clean with their tap water for more than four days.
Officials announced at noon Monday that tests show the level of a potentially harmful chemical have fallen to the point where the water can be turned back on. But, they cautioned that the process of bringing customers back on line will take several days and has to be done systematically.
Originally published on Sun January 12, 2014 11:39 am
The amount of a dangerous chemical in West Virginian's tap water is more diluted, but it is still unsafe for drinking, washing or bathing.
WCHS-TV reports that Col. Greg Grant with the National Guard told reporters that they are seeing readings of methylcyclohexane methanol dip below 1 part per million, the amount that the Center for Disease Control says is safe, but those readings have spiked from time to time.
"The numbers are turning in the right direction," Grant said.
Originally published on Fri January 10, 2014 7:13 pm
More than 100,000 customers of one water company in West Virginia have been warned not to drink, cook or wash with the water coming from their taps because of chemicals that seeped into the Elk River near Charleston on Thursday.
Putnam has banned non-essential water use as of today because the water level in the Little River is low. Residents may not water lawns and gardens or wash cars, and they are urged to conserve water for showers and household cleaning. No rain is expected for several days, which means the ban could last a week or longer.
Beginning today, Putnam residents are banned from watering lawns and gardens, washing cars and other non-essential water uses. The Putnam Water Pollution Control Authority instituted the ban because the water level in the Little River has fallen below a level that lets the town produce water under state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection regulations, according to a news release from Public Works Director Jerry Beausoleil.
Originally published on Mon September 16, 2013 10:32 am
A 4-year-old child who died of a rare brain infection in early August has led Louisiana health officials to discover that the cause is lurking in the water pipes of St. Bernard Parish, southeast of New Orleans.
We’ve talked about warming waters before on Where We Live. Now warm waters are in the news again. There are new climate change studies that provide more proof of the human causes of warming temperatures. The next big UN report on climate change contains some scary predictions...that sea levels could rise more than three feet by the end of the century.
The Wave. Water waves. Not lazy surf lapping at your toes along the beach. Colossal, ship-swallowing rogue waves; scientists scrambling to understand the phenomenon; and extreme surfers seeking the ultimate challenge. Susan Casey’s account follows the exploits of boarders conquering suicidally large, 70- and 80-foot waves and the physicists trying to grapple with the destructive powers of 1,740-foot waves off the coast of Alaska and tsunamis in the Pacific. Casey is our guest.