Stories

The five turbines of the Block Island Wind Farm off the coast of Rhode Island.

The debate over an outdated rule that’s harming renewable energy in New England

May 26, 2022

There’s a rule in the New England energy system that nobody likes. And not just because it uses a lot of complex math. This rule ends up making it harder for renewable energy projects to participate in an important regional electricity market. The New England states want it gone. U.S. Senators Ed Markey, Elizabeth Warren and Bernie…

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This Friday, Sept. 20, 2013 file photo shows the country's first floating wind turbine works off the coast of Castine, Maine.

New England task force convenes to plan the next phase of offshore wind development

May 26, 2022

Last year, President Joe Biden announced plans to start leasing areas of the Gulf of Maine to offshore wind energy developers by 2024. On Thursday, May 18, the federal Bureau Of Ocean Energy Management convened a task force of officials from Maine, New Hampshire, Massachusetts and tribal governments to consider the next phase in the…

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State biologist Lee Kantar examines a dead moose on April 26, 2022. Moose Number 59 was captured and fitted with a radio collar in the winter of 2014. The moose showed signs of anemia, which Kantar says means she had been fed on by ticks and had extreme blood loss.

Winter ticks wiped out nearly 90% of the moose calves scientists tracked in part of Maine last year

May 18, 2022

Maine is home to the largest moose population in the lower 48 states. But in one of the moosiest corners of the state, nearly 90% of the calves tracked by biologists last winter didn’t survive their first year. And the culprit? A tiny critter that is thriving in parts of Maine as the climate warms.…

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New England energy demand recently dropped to its lowest point ever

May 10, 2022

New England’s energy demand dropped to its lowest point ever earlier this month thanks to good weather and the continued adoption of rooftop solar on homes and businesses. Officials at regional grid operator ISO New England said energy demand fell to its lowest point ever – 7,580 megawatts – on Sunday, May 1st. It’s the…

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A GIF of the North Atlantic Right Whale was spotted off the coast of North Hampton on May 6, 2022.

Rare North Atlantic right whale spotted feeding off N.H. coast

May 9, 2022

New Hampshire’s coast had a rare visitor Friday: a North Atlantic right whale could be seen feeding just off the shore in North Hampton. The right whale has been on the federal endangered species list since 1970. There are fewer than 350 left. Dianna Schulte, director of research for the Blue Ocean Society for Marine Conservation, has…

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I tried to eat like a hardcore locavore in New England for a week. Here’s what I learned

May 7, 2022

Essay from WBUR reporter Andrea Shea. On a drab April morning I opened my eyes and immediately felt bereft. I sighed, then pouted. My usual cup of comfort and courage was off limits. While the beans in my coffee press are roasted in Sudbury, they’re harvested in Ethiopia. If you’re like me — and about 66% of Americans —…

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Solar crisis hits Maine as investigation into Chinese panel manufacturers puts projects on hold

May 6, 2022

Hundreds of large-scale solar power projects are on hold in the U.S., while federal trade officials investigate whether Chinese manufacturers and affiliates in Southeast Asia illegally avoided duties on solar panels. Some see the situation as a threat to President Biden’s climate agenda. Lately some of Maine’s gently rolling hills have been sprouting long rows…

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Low clouds approaching Mount Washington.

Climate change is coming for New England’s highest peak

May 2, 2022

Mount Washington in New Hampshire is famous for some of the world’s worst weather. The mountain, the highest peak in the northeast, has long held the record for the fastest wind gust ever recorded by a human — 231 mph on April 12, 1934. At 6,288 feet, the weather is often freezing, even in spring. And the…

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Nuts and dried fruit items at a grocery store.

It’s hard to avoid plastic while grocery shopping — even for a week

April 29, 2022

Essay from WBUR reporter Martha Bebinger. The thin plastic thread running between one leaf on my pineapple and its tag does me in. I don’t see it when I put the pineapple in my shopping cart, when I load the check out conveyor belt or when I unpack groceries at home. It isn’t until I…

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Eating less meat is better for the planet. Could my family go vegan for a month? Could I?

April 28, 2022

Commentary from WBUR reporter Barbara Moran. One of my son’s favorite recipes is “dinner en papillote” — it sounds fancy but it’s just sausage, potatoes, onions and mushrooms, wrapped in aluminum foil and baked for an hour. Voila — dinner is served! I expected the vegan version would be a hit. The soy chorizo looked…

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