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Now-closed Vermont Yankee nuclear power plant maintains emergency plan, security measures

Saturday, January 31, 2015

VERNON, VT. — Although the Vermont Yankee nuclear power plant shut down permanently in December and later laid off one-third of its employees, emergency plans and security measures remain in place. The plant shut down Dec. 29, after about 40 years operation. Last month, its workforce was cut from 528 to 329. Its fuel has been removed from its reactor, mixed with older, used fuel in canisters and placed in …

Valley Views: Nonotuck Park Winter

Friday, January 30, 2015

Nonotuck Park Pond, Winter Bill Halford Way, Easthampton Photograph and text by Bob Solosko, Easthampton Several months ago, while walking through the woods at Nonotuck Park in Easthampton, I came across a small pond that I thought would be interesting to photograph. After a recent snowfall, I went back to the pond and …

HEADING OUTDOORS: Upcoming outdoor activities in the area

Friday, January 2, 2015

∎  DCR Accessible Winter Recreation — The state Department of Conservation and Recreation hosts accessible winter recreation for persons with disabilities, their families, and friends. Saturdays, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., Wendell State Forest, Montague Road, Wendell. Skating, cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, more. Free. Pre-registration is required. All Out Adventures, 584-2052.  ∎ Snowshoeing for Seniors — All Out Adventures sponsors snowshoeing for ages 60 …

ISO-New England president calls for increased capacity of natural gas pipelines

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Stopping short of endorsing the Tennessee Gas Pipeline Co. Northeast Energy Direct project, the head of New England’s electricity grid operator said Wednesday that even though a relatively mild winter has driven down energy costs for the region, there is a long-term need for more capacity to feed …

Stephen Kulik files legislation that would grant authority to attorney general for reviewing natural gas pipelines

Thursday, January 22, 2015

State Rep. Stephen Kulik, D-Worthington, has filed legislation that would extend authority to the attorney general for reviewing natural gas pipelines. With new Attorney General Maura Healey succeeding Martha Coakley on Wednesday, the bill would grant a role in the proposed Tennessee Gas Pipeline Co. Northeast Energy Direct …

New island erupts in Tonga

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) — A volcanic eruption in Tonga has created a new island — although one scientist said Wednesday it could soon disappear. The volcano has been erupting for a month in the ocean about 40 …

Mothers Out Front urges residents to consider ‘green energy’ options

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

AMHERST — As a person concerned about the future health of the planet, Alisa Pearson was worried that renting her home in Pelham would make it impossible to be a good environmental steward by investing in energy-efficiency upgrades or installing solar panels. So when Pearson learned last year …

Legislation filed that would compensate property owners for land taken by eminent domain during construction of pipeline if natural gas exported

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

DEERFIELD — Proposed legislation has been filed that would provide compensation for property owners whose land is taken by eminent domain during construction of a natural gas pipeline that carries any gas which is sold overseas. State Rep. Stephen Kulik, D-Worthington, filed the bill (HD 3168) in the …

Yellowstone River oil spill fouls Mont. town’s water

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

More than 5,000 people in the rural Montana city of Glendive have been told not to use municipal water because elevated levels of cancer-causing benzene were found downstream from a weekend crude oil spill in the Yellowstone River. Officials said they were distributing fresh water that is being …

Northampton couple opens sanctuary for unwanted animals

Sunday, January 18, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — Audrey is a snow white turkey, a watch bird so to speak, who is the first to greet visitors with her quick-throated exhortations at 55 North Loudville Road. Close by is Michael, a much larger dark-feathered …

Seven groups get $10 million federal grant to protect Connecticut River watershed

Saturday, January 17, 2015

The region has won a $10 million federal conservation grant to help a coalition of agencies and nonprofits protect natural resources. This two-year grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture focuses on improving the health of Long Island Sound by making changes along the Connecticut River valley. It …

Friday, January 16, 2015

Tussock Moth, Mill Valley Road, Belchertown Photograph and text by Anne E. Ely, South Hadley While photographing frogs at a small pond in Belchertown Oct. 12, I watched this little Tussock Moth caterpillar appear and begin crawling along …

Earth Matters: Nature’s clock: Studying the timing, life cycles of species

Friday, January 16, 2015

Isn’t that a lyric cicada calling? How recently did he emerge from his underground nymph stage? Here’s a patch of spring beauties; when did they start to bloom? When did that scarlet tanager arrive from his wintering grounds …