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John Joy, left, pulls his girlfriend Brooke Finan past the Statehouse after they made a search for coffee during a winter snowstorm Tuesday, Jan. 27, 2015, in Boston.  Massachusetts was pounded by snow and lashed by strong winds early Tuesday as bands of heavy snow left some towns including Sandwich on Cape Cod and Oxford in central Massachusetts reporting more than 18 inches of snow. (AP Photo/Steven Senne)

Vignettes: On sleds and skis, braving blizzard

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

BOSTON — Bostonians are a hardy breed, and many weren’t about to let a mere blizzard cramp their style. Some voices from those who ventured out into the teeth of the storm: Sliding to town On most days, Brooke Finan gets around Boston on foot. On Tuesday, she rode around in style on a sled pulled by her boyfriend, John …

Millions of GMO insects could be released in Keys

Monday, January 26, 2015

KEY WEST, Fla. — Millions of genetically modified mosquitoes could be released in the Florida Keys if British researchers win approval to use the bugs against two extremely painful viral diseases. Never before have insects with modified DNA come so close to being set loose in a residential U.S. neighborhood. “This is essentially using a mosquito as a drug to cure disease,” said …

Obama seeks bigger Alaska refuge

Sunday, January 25, 2015

JUNEAU, Alaska — President Barack Obama is proposing to designate the vast majority of Alaska’s Arctic National Wildlife Refuge as a wilderness area, including its potentially oil-rich coastal plain, drawing an angry response from top state elected officials who see it as a land grab by the federal government. “They’ve decided that today …

Environmental news in brief

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

IN THE NEWS Kentucky blasts EPA carbon-pollution rule Officials with the state of Kentucky say the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency needs to rethink a carbon-pollution rule that could have the “most significant and far-reaching impact to environmental and energy policy that we have seen in 40 years.” In …

3 men see snout, free moose buried in Alaskan avalanche

Friday, January 2, 2015

ANCHORAGE, Alaska — There’s an extra moose alive in southcentral Alaska thanks to three snowmobilers who freed it from an avalanche. Marty Mobley, Rob Uphus and Avery Vucinich, residents of the Matanuska-Susitna Borough, on Sunday went riding on the west side of Hatcher Pass about 55 miles northeast …

Bird carcasses along Pacific shore baffle biologists

Friday, January 2, 2015

The carcasses of thousands of small birds called Cassin’s auklets have been washing ashore over the last few months from Northern California up to the north coast of Washington. Scientists along the Pacific Coast have been trying to determine what is causing the large die-off of the birds …

Wildscaping: Landscaping for wildlife

Friday, January 2, 2015

Since you’re reading this column, I’m sure you care about the environment because you know we depend on it for our own survival and because you’re concerned for the well-being of other forms of life. We are all …


Friday, January 2, 2015

∎∎ Moonlight Snowshoe/Hike for Fitness — Jan. 3, 6:30 to 9 p.m., Northfield Mountain Recreation Center, Route 63, Northfield. Free (snowshoe rental $16). 800-859-2960. ∎∎ Moonlight Skiing — Trustees of Reservations sponsor moonlight skiing, Jan. 3 and 31, 7 to 9 p.m., Notchview Reservation, Route 9, Windsor. $10. 684-0148. ∎∎ Moonlight …

Storm dumps snow, casts chill over West for New Year’s

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

A blustery winter storm dumped snow and ice across the West on Wednesday, making driving treacherous in the mountains from California to the Rockies and forcing residents and party-goers in some usually sun-soaked cities to bundle up for …

Secrecy surrounds oil trains to Delaware

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

The long tanker trains full of crude oil roll south from Pennsylvania about twice a day, along the banks of the Susquehanna River and through the heart of historic Port Deposit, gliding within feet of the VFW hall, the community basketball court, the library and a riverfront playground. …

First Day hikes in Amherst, Goshen and Northampton continue tradition, kick off 2015

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Following a long tradition, First Day hikes are scheduled in Amherst, Goshen and Northampton to kick off the new year. The Department of Conservation and Recreation is sponsoring a hike at the DAR State Forest at 11 a.m. In Amherst, a Holyoke Range State Park ranger is inviting …

Surfer survives shark bite off California coast

Monday, December 29, 2014

LOS OSOS, Calif. (AP) — A man surfing on the Central California coast was dragged under water by a juvenile great white shark and bitten in the hip on Sunday before he could paddle to shore, where he received help from two doctors who happened to be on …

Reactions vary as Vermont nuclear plant powers down

Sunday, December 28, 2014

VERNON, Vt. — Ellen Merkel says she gets “a little teary-eyed” when she thinks about the Vermont Yankee nuclear plant sending its last electrons to the regional power grid. She knows it will likely mean moving from her nice neighborhood in Vernon, where her husband works at the …