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Name that Whale!
by Sean Cosgrove

When whale researchers decide they know enough about a particular whale to identify it they give it a name. Naming the whale helps with future tracking over the course of their research and helps other researchers in sharing information such as feeding and migration patterns, what other whales that particular whale might be associating with, etc. The thing is, you…

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The bad stuff in coal has to go somewhere . . .
by Seth Kaplan

The NY Times presents some required reading about how improvements in air pollution control technology can have the unpleasant consequence of putting pollution into our waterways.  The problem of contaminated coal ash is one that CLF has engaged for years – back in the year 2000 CLF negotiated a successful settlement with the then-owner of…

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Another reason why we don’t love that dirty water?
by Anthony Iarrapino

With the Red Sox in the playoffs yet again, I know I am not alone in the hope that we’ll be hearing a lot of the Standell’s 1966 tribute to Boston and the Charles River–“Dirty Water”–throughout the month of October as the Sox go for their third World Series trophy of the young century. As…

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Imagine Vermont Covered in Oil
by Noah Chesnin

On August 21st, the Thai based energy company PTTEP announced that a “crude oil gas leak incident occurred” in the Timor Sea about 155 miles northwest of Western Australia.  The energy company’s press released continued that “the size of the spill is not known.  Aproximately 40 barrels of oil were discharged from the wellhead in…

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The Struggle continues at Salem Harbor
by Seth Kaplan

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), in an order issued on September 18, 2009, has sided with the operator of the New England electricity system (ISO-NE) in a dispute with Dominion, the owner of the Salem Harbor Power Plant. Here is the basic situation:  Dominion has “de-listed” the Salem Harbor Power Plant in the upcoming…

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What does Michael Pollan know about health care reform?
by Anthony Iarrapino

In an insightful reaction to President Obama’s health care speech to a joint session of Congress, noted author Michael Pollan (Omnivore’s Dilemma, In Defense of Food) said something very provocative on the pages of the New York Times.  Unlike South Carolina Congressman Joe Wilson, he didn’t accuse the president of lying.  But he did make pretty…

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A balancing act in the wind – building and importing renewable energy
by Seth Kaplan

At the just-concluded meeting of the New England Governors and Eastern Canadian Premiers in Saint John, the capital of the province of New Brunswick in Canada, the governors of the New England states adopted a “Blueprint” for electric transmission to facilitate development of wind power.  The idea was to sketch out a basic plan for…