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Environment

In this Aug. 26, 2014 photo, a sea wall separates Asharoken Village, N.Y. from Long Island Sound. The wall was washed over during Superstorm Sandy in October 2012, causing erosion and and taking down power lines. Asharoken can accept federal aid to build a dune and create public access to its beach for the first time in nearly 90-year history. Or it can reject aid, retain its private beach and allow erosion and other issues to worsen. (AP Photo/Emily Dooley)

Sandy-hit village wrestles with keeping beach private

Monday, September 1, 2014

ASHAROKEN, N.Y. — On a tiny spit of land off Long Island, the wealthy village of Asharoken faces a dilemma borne of Superstorm Sandy. Either it accepts millions of dollars in federal aid to build a protective sand dune and for the first time in its nearly 90-year existence allows the public to use its beach or it rejects the … 0

Groups: Monarch butterfly endangered

Monday, September 1, 2014

WASHINGTON — A coalition of environmental and food-safety groups is asking the Fish and Wildlife Service to grant endangered species protection to the monarch butterfly, whose U.S. population, the groups say, last year fell to 90 percent below its 20-year average. In a petition asking for the designation, which would allow the federal … 0

Low-level tornado touches down in Worcester

Monday, September 1, 2014

WORCESTER (AP) — The National Weather Service has confirmed a tornado touched down briefly in Worcester. Forecasters said it was the lowest rating on the tornado scale, with winds at about 85 mph in a storm that swept through on Sunday night. The tornado began at about 8:10 p.m. and ended four minutes later. It brought down trees and damaged cars, but no … 0

Bird Sightings

Friday, August 15, 2014

The Audubon Society has reported a variety of recent bird sightings in western Massachusetts. Great egrets were reported in Longmeadow, Hadley, New Salem and Pittsfield. A blue-winged teal, a common gallinule and a Virginia rail were found in … 0

Valley Views Local photographers aim their cameras outdoors

Friday, August 15, 2014

DOE Quabbin Reservoir, Belchetown Photograph and text by Anne W. Ely of South Hadley Driving through Quabbin is something I always enjoy, especially in the late afternoon when, hopefully, I will catch sight of deer. This doe, however, … 0

A bluebird house offers a lesson in environmental ethics

Friday, August 15, 2014

It was a sunny day in mid-May. Our small group of fifth-and-sixth-graders walked quietly along the farm road with our eyes glued to the nesting box on the last tree. The students were uncharacteristically quiet. As we got … 0

Space station supply ship exits, packing trash

Friday, August 15, 2014

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. — A commercial cargo ship has ended its monthlong space station visit. Astronauts aboard the International Space Station released the Cygnus supply ship, now full of trash for disposal early Friday. They parted company 260 … 0

Study finds humans responsible for most of melting glaciers

Thursday, August 14, 2014

WASHINGTON — More than two-thirds of the recent rapid melting of the world’s glaciers can be blamed on humans, a new study finds. Scientists looking at glacier melt since 1851 didn’t see a human fingerprint until about the … 1

Southwest watches Lake Mead water levels drop

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

LAS VEGAS — Once-teeming Lake Mead marinas are idle as a 14-year drought steadily drops water levels to historic lows. Officials from nearby Las Vegas are pushing conservation but also are drilling a new pipeline to keep drawing … 0

Farms are focus of studies on Toledo’s drinking water toxin

Sunday, August 10, 2014

TOLEDO, Ohio — Scientists and farmers agree that phosphorus from agriculture runoff is feeding the blue-green algae blooms on Lake Erie linked to a toxin found in the drinking water of 400,000 people in Ohio and southeastern Michigan … 0

New England consortium of governors, energy executives seeks to slow process for possible utility tariffs

Friday, August 8, 2014

A New England consortium of governors and energy executives has indicated it wants to slow a proposal to petition the federal government for utility customer tariffs to finance $5 billion to $10 billion in power projects such as natural gas pipelines and transmission lines. The New England States … 0

Debris a threat to oceans, wildlife and coral reefs

Friday, August 8, 2014

Dear EarthTalk: Recent news coverage of the disappearance of Malaysian Airlines Flight 370 reminded us all again of how much debris, including plastic, is in our oceans. To what extent is this a real problem that threatens ocean … 0

Bird Sightings

Friday, August 8, 2014

The Audubon Society has reported a variety of recent bird sightings in western Massachusetts. An immature little blue heron was found at Szot Park in Chicopee, then at the Springfield Plaza in a pond next to the theater … 0