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Environment

Whale sightings increase off New Jersey coast

Sunday, August 31, 2014

HACKENSACK, N.J. — While it hasn’t become Cape Cod just yet, the number of whale sightings around New Jersey has increased substantially this year, suggesting that the state’s coastal waters are now clean enough to sustain humpbacks, finbacks and other species during their feeding season. Since April, dozens of whales have been spotted from Sandy Hook to Cape May chasing down schools of small fish sometimes within a mile of … 0

Plainfield joins with Ashfield and Buckland to offer Solarize Massachusetts program

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Plainfield, Ashfield and Buckland are forming a consortium and will apply for a grant that could save homeowners and businesses hundreds of dollars on the cost of solar-panel installations. The program is called Solarize Massachusetts, and the Clean Energy Center has announced two new rounds of funding grants, according to Plainfield Energy Committee Chairman Tim Walter. Walter said the newly formed consortium will … 0

Bird Sightings

Friday, August 29, 2014

The Audubon Society has reported a variety of recent bird sightings in western Massachusetts. A black tern and a greater scaup have been seen off the Winsor Dam at the south end of the Quabbin Reservoir. A black-crowned night-heron, a great egret, a pectoral sandpiper, a semipalmated sandpiper and a greater yellowlegs were … 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

Valley Views Local photographers aim their cameras outdoors

Friday, August 8, 2014

THREE’S A CROWD Belchertown Photograph and text by Anne E. Ely of South Hadley “She’s mine. Get your own girl.” That’s what this male wood duck appears to be saying to an interested bachelor. I caught the action … 0

Cyclists visit Valley raising awareness about climate change

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Dressed in bright orange T-shirts and black cycling shorts and carried miles by their bicycles, six members of the Climate Summer team have been riding around Massachusetts over the past seven weeks, including a vigil Wednesday night and … 0

The Regulators: MassDEP enforcement notes, violations, fees, orders

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

THE REGULATORS The following are the most recent available state Department of Environmental Protection consent orders and penalty assessments in western Massachusetts. ■ WATER SUPPLY VIOLATIONS AMENDED CONSENT ORDER, JUNE 12, CHESTERFIELD: Entered into an amendment to an … 0