The Environment in Focus

Wednesday at 9:35 am and 5:45 pm

The Environment in Focus is a weekly perspective on the issues and people changing Maryland's natural world. There's a story behind every bend of the Chesapeake Bay's 11,684 miles of shoreline, in every abandoned coal mine in the Appalachian Mountains, in every exotic beetle menacing our forests and in every loophole snuck into pollution control laws in Annapolis.  Tom Pelton gives you a tour of this landscape every Wednesday at 9:35 a.m. and 5:45 p.m. He describes the people behind the news and discusses the broader government policies and trends shaping our ecology -- our land, our air and our Bay.

Mallows Bay

Tom Pelton bio.

The Environment in Focus is sponsored by The Nature Conservancy, which conserves the lands and waters on which all life depends. In Maryland, The Nature Conservancy's work spans from the Chesapeake Bay to the state's western forests, protecting clean water and air, preserving recreational opportunities and saving a natural legacy for future generations.  Learn more at nature.org/Maryland.

Full Archive of Environment in Focus

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The Environment In Focus
1:28 pm
Tue April 15, 2014

Beaver Boom Dams Up Pollution Control Projects

Once nearly extinct in the East, beaver populations are booming.  Their comeback, however, is creating complications for storm water pollution control systems, which beavers love to dam up.

Stephanie Boyles Griffin, director of wildlife response for the Humane Society of the U.S., is convincing governments to use devices called "beaver deceivers." They foil beaver dams in a way that does not kill the animals.

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The Environment In Focus
2:07 pm
Tue April 8, 2014

Wind Farm Proposal Hit by Hurricane of Political Opposition

Fourth generation farm owners Mary Anne and Rick Peterman are among the residents of the Eastern Shore of Maryland who would profit from a proposed 50-turbine wind farm that could be the first built on the Delmarva Peninsula. 

Environment In Focus Podcast 4-9-2014

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The Environment In Focus
2:36 pm
Tue April 1, 2014

Spills of Coal Ash and Chemicals Illustrate Need for EPA

A coal waste containment pond owned by the nation’s largest power company, Duke Energy, ruptured in February, spewing almost 40,000 tons of toxic muck into North Carolina's Dan River.

The disaster -- along with a chemical spill into a West Virginia river -- illustrate the need for strong regulatory action by EPA to protect waterways at a time the federal agency is being criticized as unnecessary.   (Photo by U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service/Steve Alexander)  

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The Environment In Focus
3:01 pm
Tue March 25, 2014

Electronic Tracking Follows Epic Migration of Osprey

The Chesapeake Bay Foundation is using tiny cell-phone like devices in backpacks on osprey to follow the migration of the fish hawks from South America to North America.

Environment In Focus Podcast 3-26-2014

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The Environment In Focus
11:42 am
Wed March 19, 2014

Climate Engineering is a Controversial "Plan B" for Global Warming

Can we engineer Earth's atmosphere to stop global warming?

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The Environment in Focus
2:51 pm
Tue March 11, 2014

Genetic Engineering to Save Endangered Species

In a new book, Frankenstein's Cat, author Emily Anthes makes the provocative argument that cloning and genetic engineering could be used as tools to help bring back endangered species and perhaps even to resurrect extinct animals.

Environment In Focus Podcast 3-12-2014

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The Environment In Focus
2:25 pm
Tue March 4, 2014

Shortchanging Maryland's Land Preservation Program

Maryland Governor Martin O'Malley pledged to "fully fund" the state's land preservation program when he ran for office, but then diverted $693 million from the dedicated land preservation fund to help solve a budget crisis after the recession hit.  

The Environment In Focus Podcast 3-5-2014

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The Environment In Focus
2:51 pm
Tue February 25, 2014

Texas is Messing With the Chesapeake Bay Cleanup

Why did the Attorneys General of Texas and 20 other states recently join a lawsuit to stop the Chesapeake Bay cleanup? 

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The Environment In Focus
2:12 pm
Tue February 18, 2014

"Black Liquor" Loophole Consumes Almost Half of Clean Energy Subsidies

Clean energy advocates are urging the Maryland General Assembly to close a loophole in the state's renewable energy law, which allows paper mills to burn a wood waste called "black liquor" to collect millions of dollars in subsidies from electricity rate payers.

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The Environment In Focus
2:27 pm
Tue February 11, 2014

The Comeback of an Ancient Fishing Bird

Double-crested cormorants were nearly wiped out in much of the U.S. before a rebound sparked by the federal government's 1972 ban the pesticide DDT and prohibitions on shooting the fishing birds.  

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