Environment

Fish & Wildlife close to ban on drone-assisted hunting

A drone that flew over the Statehouse in Montpelier as part of the ACLU-VT’s presentation of their report on information-gathering programs in the Vermont on Tuesday. Photo by Kate Robinson/VTDigger

The idea that one might use a drone to scan a forest and pinpoint an animal’s location, or even corner the animal or lead it in a certain direction has many Vermont hunters up in arms.

Vermonters join 400,000 marchers in NYC climate march

NYC Climate march, Sept. 21, 2014. Photo by Don Hooper

More than 2,000 Vermonters participated, many riding the more than 20 full Saturday and Sunday buses from the Green Mountains.

PCB-contaminated site in Bennington named to federal Superfund list

The Jard Company site. EPA photo

In the 1970s and early 1980s, Jard Company Inc. built capacitors, a process which involved polychlorinated biphenyls. The PCB compounds bind themselves to other materials, such as sediment, and are known to cause cancer.

New groundwater discharge rules approved

When groundwater flows through springs or is pumped to the surface, it becomes surface water, which triggers a different regulatory framework than water stored underground. Photo by Hilary Niles/VTDigger

Lawmakers approve an update of state regulations on injection wells. The new rules will omit many types of low-risk sites, but state officials say those sites have never effectively been regulated and the new rules will better reflect reality.

State biologists don’t expect major impact from spiny water flea

Biologists for the Vermont Department of Fish and Wildlife say the discovery of a new invasive species in Lake Champlain is unlikely to have a major impact. Scientists say the spiny water flea, a tiny crustacean, caused only minor concerns when it arrived in the Great Lakes. The department said in a news release that […]

Nutrient trading proposed as an option for reducing Lake Champlain pollution

Vermont Organics Reclamation cropped

Vermont Organics Reclamation buys on average 20 percent of a farm’s manure and pays farmers between $6 to $8 per cubic yard. The soils and fertilizer is sold to growers in cities.

USDA chief announces $45 million to help farmers curb runoff

U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack announced federal funding available for agricultural conservation practices at a news conference Thursday at ECHO Lake Aquarium and Science Center in Burlington. Photo by John Herrick/VTDigger

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack visits state to tout program aimed at reducing phosphorus runoff into Lake Champlain. Nutrients from manure and fertilizer trigger annual blooms of toxic blue-green algae.

Three years after Irene: Fish hatchery among the lingering scars

Floodwaters remain at the Roxbury fish hatchery shortly after Tropical Storm Irene struck in August 2011. Photo courtesy of Vermont Fish and Wildlife

The state’s Roxbury facility was heavily damaged when Tropical Storm Irene blew through in 2011. It will take $4.5 million to replace but FEMA is challenging the proposed design.

Randolph settles with state over sewage discharge

The state’s environmental enforcement agency and the town of Randolph reached a $56,350 settlement last week over the discharge of human waste and other sewage into the White River. Department of Environmental Conservation’s Compliance and Enforcement Division (CED) in 2012 responded to an anonymous complaint and found toilet paper, human waste and grease flowing from […]

Herbicide spraying at campground violated state regulations

The Winhall Brook Camping Area in South Londonderry. U.S. Army Corps of Engineers photo

Company hired by Army Corps of Engineers sprayed Rodeo near occupied campsites at the Winhall Brook Camping Area. State weighs enforcement options.

State to step up testing for toxic blue green algae in Lake Champlain

A shot of algae-free waters of St. Albans Bay off Gould Susslin’s dock. Right: A 2006 blue-green algae bloom off the same dock. Photos courtesy of Gould Susslin

The algae can cause symptoms ranging form short-term illness and allergic reactions to liver damage. Approximately 200,000 people drink water from Lake Champlain.

In rare cases, utility poles are a source of PCP contamination in drinking water

Nearly all of the 600,000 utility poles in Vermont have been treated with the wood preservative PCP, which can cause a wide range of health problems to people exposed to it.  Photo by John Herrick/VTDigger

The state’s call for an investigation came shortly after natural gas pipeline opponents warned that construction of Vermont Gas’ 41-mile pipeline extension through Addison County could release the toxic chemical into nearby resident’s water supplies.

Top ANR official calls for streamlined permit process

Environmental Conservation Commissioner David Mears presented the state’s final proposal to clean up Lake Champlain on Thursday in the governor’s conference room. Photo by John Herrick/VTDigger

David Mears, commissioner of the Department of Environmental Conservation, said there should be more public involvement in the early stages of a permit review process and an expedited appeal process for concerns raised after a permit decision is issued.

Montpelier officials unhappy with Berlin Pond ruling

Berlin Pond is the source of the Capital City's drinking water. It's accessibility for recreational uses has caused a rift between the city and town. Photo by John Herrick/VTDigger

The state on Thursday banned motorized vehicles on the source of the city’s drinking water but allowed other recreational uses.

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