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Environment

FILE - In this June 15, 2014 file photo, a polar bear dries off after taking a swim in the Chukchi Sea in Alaska. About a third of the world's polar bears could be in imminent danger from greenhouse gas emissions in as soon as a decade, a U.S. government report shows. The U.S. Geological Survey, the Interior Department's research arm, said updated scientific models don't bode well for polar bear populations across the world, especially in Alaska, the only state in the nation with the white bears. (Brian Battaile/U.S. Geological Survey via AP, File)

US report warns of polar bears’ peril

Thursday, July 2, 2015

ANCHORAGE, Alaska — Polar bears are at risk of dying off if humans don’t reverse the trend of global warming, a blunt U.S. government report filed Thursday said. “The single most important step for polar bear conservation is decisive action to address Arctic warming,” the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service said in a draft recovery plan, part of the process …

Earth Matters: The puzzle tree: Independence Day musings on sycamores

Thursday, July 2, 2015

I’ll be thinking about the eastern sycamore tree this Independence Day, an American tree on our national holiday. Although all trees might be said to be “created equal” from a moral perspective, each tree species has its own value to those who use trees. I eat apples; squirrels eat acorns; crossbills eat conifer …

W. Europe swelters in heat wave

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

PARIS — Joggers wheezed, electric wires warped, and Britain sweated through its hottest July day on record as a wide swath of Western Europe sweltered in a heat wave. Authorities in France and elsewhere, mindful that thousands died during a 2003 heat wave, reached out to the elderly, families and other vulnerable people …

Tennessee Gas Pipeline seeks to buy 242 acres in Northfield for 80,000-horsepower compressor station

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

NORTHFIELD — Criticized by Congressman James McGovern and Northfield town officials for being slow to identify the site of its planned 80,000-horsepower compressor station, Tennessee Gas Pipeline Co. has now released details about the location of the site. The map released last week by the Federal Energy Regulatory …

Biologist Boyd Kynard an expert on behavior and ecology of shortnose sturgeon in Connecticut River

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Boyd Kynard is an internationally respected scientist, researcher and innovator whose passion is to understand fish behavior, and apply that knowledge to improving the viability of migratory fish species. His target is sturgeon, more specifically here in New …

Shortnose sturgeon evolved in age of the dinosaurs, grinds food in unique gizzard-like organ

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Here are essential facts about the shortnose sturgeon (Acipenser brevirostrum) which evolved in the age of the dinosaurs and is unique in appearance and behavior. These primitive-looking fish lack scales and instead have five rows of protective bony plates on their body called scutes. They have a shark-like …

Republicans revive efforts for more aggressive tree removal from national forest lands, win some backing from Obama administration

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

WASHINGTON — Drought has killed about 12 million trees in California’s national forests. In the Rocky Mountain region, an epidemic of pine beetles has damaged trees over a stretch of 32 million acres. Altogether, up to 40 percent …

Solar advocates seek to end caps on sales of sun-generated electricity to Massachusetts utilities

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Solar advocates want the Legislature to preserve the right of larger solar electricity producers to get paid by electric companies for excess power the solar arrays produce through a process called “net metering.” Tired of the “solar-coaster” of up-and-down incentives and disincentives for the renewable solar energy, solar …

Franklin Council of Governments helps towns prepare for federal review of Tennessee Gas Pipeline project

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

What questions does the upcoming environmental impact review of Tennessee Gas Pipeline Co. project through western Massachusetts need to answer? The Franklin Regional Council of Governments is making a list on behalf of the towns that the proposed $5 billion project would pass through to get ready for …

Tell it to New England: May was wettest on record for US

Monday, June 8, 2015

WASHINGTON (AP) — Feeling soggy? Last month was the wettest on record for the contiguous United States, according to federal meteorologists. On average 4.36 inches of rain and snow — mostly rain — fell over the Lower 48 …

Woolman Hill Quaker Retreat Center latest Deerfield organization to oppose Tennessee Gas Pipeline

Monday, June 8, 2015

DEERFIELD — The Woolman Hill Quaker Retreat Center has become the latest organization in Deerfield to publicize its opposition to the proposed Tennessee Gas Pipeline Co. project, which is expected to pass within less than a mile of the Keets Road complex. “Woolman Hill joins with other communities, …

Blanca a tropical storm as it nears Baja California

Sunday, June 7, 2015

CABO SAN LUCAS, Mexico — Hurricane Blanca was downgraded to a tropical storm Sunday as it neared the Baja California Peninsula, where residents boarded up home and storefront windows in preparation for the heavy rains and high winds …

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Friday, June 5, 2015