Covering Climate Now

Welcome to the New England News Collaborative’s collection of stories on climate change in 2021. This year for Earth Day, we featured stories of people living through our climate emergency, and looked at what our region is doing to lower emissions and adapt to a warming world. These stories dovetailed with Covering Climate Now, a global journalism collaboration strengthening coverage of the climate story. Special thanks to NHPR’s By Degrees climate project.

As New England Wind Power Grows, Local Activists Try To Halt Natural Gas Projects

J.D. Allen and Patrick Skahill | April 21, 2021

The fight against fossil fuel expansion in New England has a new front in Killingly, Connecticut. Climate activists want the state to reject a proposed natural gas plant there, which is tied to the company behind a controversial pipeline development currently underway in Minnesota and a recently completed natural gas line in New England. Connecticut’s…

Powerlines in Medway, MA. Photo by Jesse Costa for WBUR

As Biden’s Climate Summit Approaches, Carbon Pricing Remains Uncertain

Susan Sharon | April 21, 2021

President Joe Biden is inviting world leaders to join him later this week for a virtual climate summit, where the president is expected to announce a new, lower target for U.S. greenhouse gas emissions. The reduction is seen as essential for slowing climate change. Biden has also pledged to adopt new regulations for fossil fuel…

Transmission Upgrades Could Hold The Key To New England Clean Energy Goals

J.D. Allen | April 20, 2021

President Joe Biden’s $2 trillion infrastructure proposal seeks to help reach the administration’s ambitious clean energy goals for the U.S. over the next decade. Part of that means funding upgrades to the country’s electric transmission system — the poles and wires that everyone relies on to access power nearby or from hundreds of miles away.…

Hartford Is Burning Its Recycling, And It’s Costing The City $30K A Month

Patrick Skahill | April 20, 2021

That recycling you put out each week in the blue bin may not be going where you think it is. Because of contamination in curbside bins, the city of Hartford is now redirecting most of its recycling to a nearby incinerator, which means tons and tons of recyclable materials are going to waste while the…

‘It’s My Future’: A New Generation Of Young Climate Activists Takes The Helm In New Hampshire

Annie Ropeik | April 19, 2021

By the time today’s teenagers turn 50, New England’s climate will feel very different. Under current warming trends, states like New Hampshire will have shorter winters with less snow. Some coastal areas will be underwater. And it will all be worse without swift action to stop fossil fuel emissions. This possible future is calling more…

After Years Of Uncertainty, Expected Decision On Vineyard Wind Could Launch New Industry

Miriam Wasser | April 19, 2021

New Bedford’s Marine Commerce Terminal is a huge spread of open concrete jutting into the harbor. On a recent day, a few refrigerated trucks were unloading seafood at a processing plant next door, but the terminal itself just looked like a giant empty parking lot. As the wind swept across the vast space, the biggest action…

Floodwater rises in Marshfield during the nor'easter on March 13, 2018. Photo by Jesse Costa for WBUR

Shelter From the Climate Storm? Experts Say Vermont Needs To Prepare For ‘Climigration’

John Dillon | April 19, 2021

As the planet warms, many areas around the world may become uninhabitable. On the east coast of the United States, especially in population centers like Boston and New York, rising sea levels and increased coastal flooding are likely to force people to move inland to places that are higher, drier and relatively affordable – places…

Biden, New England Energy Goals Could Soon Change Regional Energy Mix

J.D. Allen | April 19, 2021

President Joe Biden’s energy goals will make significant changes to where New England gets its power. How states choose to embrace these goals as part of their climate change plans could shake up the region’s energy market over the next decade. This week, all eyes are on Biden, who will convene world leaders for an…

With A Drone and Patience, Scientists Track Endangered Right Whale in Cape Cod Bay

Eve Zuckoff | April 16, 2021

On a recent cool, windy day, a team of scientists aboard a weatherbeaten 55-foot sailboat motored across Cape Cod Bay toward Provincetown, where dozens of North Atlantic right whales had been spotted days earlier. “A bunch of whales were [seen] on a line between the mouth of Barnstable Harbor to Wood End off Provincetown. So…

Grounded In Science, Climate Researchers Are Rethinking How Often They Fly

Jesse Remedios | April 7, 2021

Boston University biology professor Pamela Templer is a real-life Lorax. She studies the effects of climate change on trees across New England: from the White Mountains of New Hampshire to the Harvard Forest in central Massachusetts, and in urban areas like the campus at Boston University along Commonwealth Avenue. “I love working with trees,” Templer said.…