Another Reason to Protect and Restore Eelgrass: Climate Change Mitigation

Nov 19, 2014 at 2:53pm by  | Bio |  Leave a Comment

It’s an alarming but true fact that, of the 2,900 acres of eelgrass in the Great Bay and Piscataqua River in 1996, more than 1,200 acres have disappeared. Without eelgrass, the bottom of the estuary and river will be a featureless mudflat – no longer the home to juvenile crabs, lobsters, and all manner of fish. Eelgrass provides oxygen, improves water quality, and anchors the sediment in place. The more exposed and unanchored the bottom is, the more sediment that ends up suspended in the water column – effectively reducing photosynthesis and thus reducing growth and furthering the loss of essential eelgrass beds. But now there is even more reason to preserve and restore eelgrass beds: reducing the threats of climate change. A recent piece by Derrick Z. Jackson in read more…

First Season on the Water with the Great Bay–Piscataqua Waterkeeper

Nov 17, 2014 at 5:14pm by  | Bio |  Leave a Comment

With the comfortable boating season at an end, the Great Bay–Piscataqua Waterkeeper vessel was removed from the water at the end of the October. It was a good couple of months on Great Bay and the Piscataqua River, with the vessel providing an excellent platform to introduce municipal and state officials, funders, and the press to Great Bay in a way that simply writing about the issues cannot. Given Great Bay’s location, few folks ever see the whole estuary. A fine article with video and numerous pictures of the estuary appeared in the Portsmouth Herald and is well worth a read. Understanding the geography is but one facet. Understanding the beauty and complexity of the estuary is something else altogether. The health of the estuary’s many components are intricately related read more…

Taking a Bite out of Global Warming Pollution

Nov 17, 2014 at 3:50pm by  | Bio |  Leave a Comment

Tackling global warming pollution is the biggest environmental challenge of our generation. That’s why CLF is partnering with environmental, business, and low-income leaders in Vermont to launch an effort to tax carbon pollution and save Vermonters money. If polluters pay, Vermonters save. Click here to join our campaign and sign a petition to Vermont’s legislators. We did our homework. An economic study shows that putting a price on carbon, returning 90% of the money to Vermonters pockets and also reinvesting the remaining 10% in clean energy solutions reduces pollution and grows the Vermont economy. It’s the best cash-back offer in decades. Less pollution, lower energy bills, and a healthy New England for us and our kids. You can read the economic report here. While action at the federal level makes read more…

This Week on TalkingFish.org – November 10-14

Nov 14, 2014 at 4:11pm by  | Bio |  Leave a Comment

November 11 – Facing the Fishing Facts – The bad news is that the emergency measures put in place this week by NMFS’s regional director John Bullard are drastic. If the past is any prelude to the future, the worse news is that the measures will not be sufficient to stop the collapse of cod. November 14 – Fish Talk in the News – Friday, November 14 – In this week’s Fish Talk in the News, NOAA announced Gulf of Maine cod and haddock emergency measures; former deputy director of NMFS reassures that the science behind cod stock assessment is accurate; fishermen complain that lobstermen are exempt from new closure areas; NEFMC meeting is next week, November 17-20; University of Maine and NOAA Northeast Fisheries formed a new partnership for undergraduate read more…

Even This Winter, PSNH Coal Plants Aren’t Cheap

Nov 14, 2014 at 11:45am by  | Bio |  Leave a Comment

With electric rates headed up for the winter, more than a few people are admiring the perennially high but stable rates of PSNH, New Hampshire’s largest utility and the owner of the state’s two coal-fired power plants. But what’s behind PSNH’s rate’s new luster—the first time in the state’s decade-plus experience with a restructured electric market that PSNH’s rate is appreciably lower than other utilities? Just like they did last winter, PSNH and its parent company Northeast Utilities are touting PSNH’s ownership of coal plants as a “hedge” against the natural gas-driven volatility in the overall market for electric power. In fact, they’ve been repeating similar things for years, and this winter’s rates might seem like vindication. That’s probably why it’s popping up as fact in letters to the editor and in news stories, read more…

Stay Warm without Breaking the Bank: Tips for Saving Energy this Winter

Nov 13, 2014 at 3:05pm by  | Bio |  2 Comments »

5 Things You Can Do to Reduce Your Winter Energy Costs Over the past few weeks, there’s been a lot in the news about increased electric rates and the prospect of high prices this winter, but no one has been telling you the whole story. Here at CLF, we’re working to build a thriving New England for all people, and making sure that people are able to stay warm without breaking the bank is a big concern for us. In fact, CLF and its allies have called on utilities and regulators to increase investments in energy efficiency and fuel assistance to help consumers, but now, with the first really cold weather of the season bearing down on us, in an effort to help our members and anyone else who is worried read more…

New Hampshire’s Oil Spill Response Team Preps for the Worst-Case Scenario

Nov 13, 2014 at 12:08pm by  | Bio |  Leave a Comment

Ever since 1859 when the first commercial oil well was drilled in Titusville, Pennsylvania, oil spills have become an unfortunate fact of life. In the spring of 1989 the Exxon Valdez ran aground and spewed 11 million gallons into Prince William Sound. I have held a grudge ever since, and, without exception, never purchase fuel from an Exxon or Mobil station. As a result of the British Petroleum, Deepwater Horizon catastrophe in 2010, I added BP to that list. If I looked closely, I bet that every company in the oil industry has had significant spills, and if I added them to my “grudge” list, I would have to stop buying gasoline. As with any disaster, we need to learn from our mistakes, and be prepared to do better in read more…

Keeping Out Citizens

Nov 12, 2014 at 4:53pm by  | Bio |  Leave a Comment

Regulatory decisions, like democracies, and even social events, generally benefit from broad participation. It is rare that the input from a wide range of interests doesn’t improve the outcome. In regulatory matters, allowing broad participation is particularly helpful when the folks who usually participate have already reached an agreement. The only opportunity to hear another perspective is by letting others into the process. Recently, the Shumlin administration in Vermont opposed CLF participating in a public utility proceeding that would determine if Vermont Gas violated a rule requiring them to give notice of significant cost increases, and an appropriate penalty. It was perhaps the first time in Vermont that the entity representing the public opposed CLF’s participation in a public utility proceeding. It is particularly troubling because Vermont Gas and the read more…

Environmental Ethic, Environmental Justice

Nov 12, 2014 at 11:10am by  | Bio |  Leave a Comment

I grew up in a small town in rural western Pennsylvania. My father was the first African American born in our town, and he was the first to graduate from high school. My parents managed to raise seven children on my father’s hourly-wage job as a sanitation worker on my town’s only garbage truck. For low-income families, reusing and recycling isn’t something you choose to do – it’s just your way of life. As the youngest child, I grew up wearing my siblings’ hand-me-downs. At Christmas, sometimes I received a used toy that one of my older siblings had grown tired of, wrapped up and perched under the tree for me to discover on Christmas morning. We reused and recycled a whole host of things, from aluminum foil and plastic read more…

Time to Make Good on Global Warming Solutions Act

Nov 10, 2014 at 5:14pm by  | Bio |  4 Comments »

In 2008, the Massachusetts legislature unanimously passed the strongest climate change mandates in the nation, and Governor Patrick signed it into law. One of the key pieces of that law, the Global Warming Solutions Act (GWSA) was a direct command to the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection to put regulations in place that would establish legally enforceable emissions reductions. The legislature spoke clearly and unmistakably, dictating that: “The Department shall promulgate regulations establishing a desired level of declining annual aggregate emission limits for sources or categories of sources that emit greenhouse gases.” The statute provided the Department with ample time to develop the regulations, setting a date of January 1, 2012, for establishing the regulations and an effective date of January 1, 2013. Now, six years later, that mandate remains read more…

Page 1 of 13212345...102030...Last »