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Environment

Lava creeps closer to Hawaii homes

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

PAHOA, Hawaii — After weeks of slow, stop-and-go movement, a river of asphalt-black lava was less than the length of a football field from homes in a Big Island community Tuesday. The lava flow easily burned down an empty shed at about 7:30 a.m., several hours after entering a residential property in Pahoa Village, said Hawaii County Civil Defense Director Darryl Oliveira. A branch of the molten stream was less than 100 yards from a two-story house. It could hit the home later Tuesday if it continues on its current path, Oliveira estimated. Residents of Pahoa Village, the commercial center of the island’s rural Puna …

Coalition plans advertising campaign backing projects such as Tennessee Gas Pipeline

Monday, October 27, 2014

With higher electricity costs scheduled to kick in next week for National Grid customers, a recently created “Coalition to Lower Energy Costs” is planning a media campaign, backed by large industrial electricity users — and organized by lobbyists connected to pipeline proponent Kinder Morgan — pushing for support of projects such as the Northeast Energy Direct pipeline. The coalition was organized Oct. 8 …

Relicensing of Northfield Mountain Pumped Storage Project raises concerns about erosion study

Monday, October 27, 2014

As part of a 35-year effort to stop erosion along the Connecticut River’s banks, engineers, environmental groups and representatives of federal, state and regional agencies routinely troll the shore in the 22-mile river stretch between the Turners Falls and Vernon, Vermont, dams to produce a “full river reconnaissance” study. But as FirstLight Power prepares for relicensing of its hydroelectric projects, that study — …

Heading Outdoors

Friday, October 24, 2014

∎   Fall Landscape Photography Field Trip — Workshop, field trip and critique with photographers Andrea York and Michael Zide in Amherst, Oct. 25, 8 to 11 a.m. RSVP zide@comcast.net. ∎   Holyoke VNA 5K Run/Walk for Hospice Life Care — 5K run/walk at Ashley Reservoir, Oct. 25, …

Watching northern harriers in flight

Friday, October 24, 2014

Every October they arrive, with the oranges and crimsons of the sugar maples beginning to fade and the low-bush blueberry leaves flushing scarlet. The greens of summer are mostly gone, replaced by the reds, purples and browns of …

Valley Views Local photographers aim their cameras outdoors

Friday, October 24, 2014

QUABBIN MIST Quabbin Reservoir, Belchertown Photograph and text by Anne E. Ely of South Hadley Early morning fog or mist is something I enjoy photographing. The only problem being getting up and out in time. I was later …

EU reaches deal to cut greenhouse gas emissions

Friday, October 24, 2014

BRUSSELS (AP) — European Leaders agreed early Friday to cut greenhouse gas emissions in the 28-nation bloc to at least 40 percent below 1990 levels by 2030. The deal was aimed at countering climate change and setting an …

Massachusetts, other NE states tops for efficiency

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

MONTPELIER, Vt. (AP) — Four New England states have been ranked in the top 10 nationally for their energy efficiency efforts. Massachusetts led the way in the annual ranking by the American Council for an Energy Efficient Economy, with Rhode Island and Vermont tied with Oregon in the …

Tennessee Gas Pipeline schedules three December ‘open house’ meetings in Franklin County

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Tennessee Gas Pipeline has scheduled three “open house” meetings Dec. 2, 3 and 10 in Franklin County to discuss its proposed Northeast Direct Natural Gas Pipeline project. The company on Tuesday submitted its schedule of a dozen meeting dates with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, including Dec. 2 …

Nepal vows new rules after trekking disaster

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

KATMANDU, Nepal — Nepal on Tuesday said it will introduce new rules, improve weather forecasts and better monitor the movement of trekkers after the Himalayan country’s worst hiking disaster left dozens dead last week. Tourism Department official Tulasi …

Plainfield, Ashfield, Buckland join to seek state grant reducing cost of installing solar panels for residents, businesses

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

With 133 households interested in installing solar-electric systems on their homes, the newly formed Ashfield-Buckland-Plainfield consortium has applied for a “Solarize Mass” grant that would cut the cost of electricity-producing solar panels by up to 20 percent below the statewide average. If the consortium’s application is among the …

'In a year or two, they'll all be dead' Tiny insect is killing off Northampton's red pine trees

Monday, October 20, 2014

NORTHAMPTON — A tiny insect the size of a fleck of pepper is wreaking havoc on red pine trees in the city’s watershed lands, forcing the Department of Public Works to hire a forester to survey the trees …

Activist dives in dumpsters across US to highlight food waste

Monday, October 20, 2014

CLEVELAND — Rob Greenfield is standing barefoot and shirtless in a dumpster when he finds the strawberries. He’s ravenous after bicycling more than 60 miles, so he stops rummaging through bags and boxes to open the container of …