Environment

Elmore State Park, seen here in 2015. 55 of Vermont's State Parks are now open.
Amy Kolb Noyes / VPR/file

This holiday weekend marks the traditional full opening of Vermont’s 55 state parks.

Northern cardinals have distinctive colors and call to one another at dawn and dusk.
Tyler Pockette / courtesy

How fast can the fastest bird go (and what bird is it?) Why do birds have wings? How do they fly? Why are birds so colorful? And why do they sing at dawn and dusk? In the second part of our live show in April with Bird Diva Bridget Butler, we learn all about birds, and get some lessons in how to sing like our avian neighbors!

There's still plenty of mud, and even some snow and ice, left on Vermont's hiking trails. The Green Mountain Club asks that hikers head into the woods prepared.
Amy Kolb Noyes / VPR

It's officially hiking season, but that doesn’t mean Vermont’s wooded trails are clear of all traces of winter.

Green Mountain Club Field Supervisor Ilana Copel and Membership & Communications Coordinator Kristin McLane stand on the new Long Trail boardwalk, along a beaver pond.
Amy Kolb Noyes / VPR

The Friday before Memorial Day marks the traditional start of the hiking season in Vermont. This year, it's also the opening of a newly relocated section of the Long Trail that includes a wheelchair and stroller accessible boardwalk.

Vermont's Department of Health tested the blood of 477 people in Bennington County. This week, the EPA held a conference to discuss issues around chemicals like PFOA.
Howard Weiss-Tisman / VPR

This week, the Environmental Protection Agency held a summit in Washington D.C. to discuss the environmental impact of chemicals known as PFAS.

J. Scott Applewhite / AP

Rep. Peter Welch has signed on to a bipartisan letter demanding that the Environmental Protection Agency released a study on the health effects of the chemicals PFOA and PFOS.

Foods that contains genetically modified ingredients will soon have a special label.

We recently got the first glimpse of what that label might look like, when the U.S. Department of Agriculture released its proposed guidelines.

Fish and Wildlife technician Taylor Booth, left, and biologist Chet Mackenzie measure a male sturgeon caught in the Winooski River.
John Dillon / VPR

An ancient fish still swims in Lake Champlain. Biologists and anglers are seeing more giant, long-lived lake sturgeon here, even as an environmental group calls for greater protection for the species around the country.

Crews in the White Mountains will spend the summer repairing the oldest hiking trail in continuous use in America. Crawford Path has carried countless hikers to the summit of Mount Washington for nearly 200 years, and endured a lot of wear and tear along the way.

Now it’s getting a badly needed facelift, to mark the White Mountain National Forest’s hundredth birthday

If Scott Pruitt arrived on Capitol Hill expecting to be grilled Wednesday, he did not have to wait long to see that expectation fulfilled.

A turkey vulture soars over the National Life building in Montpelier.
Kent McFarland, courtesy / Vermont Center For Ecostudies

Outdoor Radio usually takes us to a mountain top,  pond or forest to get close to wildlife. But this month, biologists Sara Zahendra and Kent McFarland are on top of an office building in Montpelier. For the past several years, National Life employees have been able to watch turkey vultures out their windows. The birds are drawn to the rooftop for warmth and show off their huge wingspan soaring around the building. We learn how to identify turkey vultures from other big birds and how it is that they can eat roadkill and not get sick.

This is the time of year when many Vermonters have a pile of branches or other debris that they want to burn. But it's also the time of year when weather conditions make it easy for fires to spread out of control.

 Aaron Shepard of the Northwest Vermont Solid Waste District empties food scrap buckets on the district's  residential collection route. While some haulers have begun to collect food scraps a  bill delays a requirement that every hauler offer the service.
Melody Bodette / VPR

Lawmakers have decided to put off a requirement to have solid waste haulers pick up food scraps from in front of residential homes in 2018.

Sheldon dairy farmer Bill Rowell was in the Statehouse recently working against a provision that would allow the public to sue farmers over environmental violations.
John Dillon / VPR

A bill that would allow citizens to go to court to enforce state water pollution laws is facing fierce opposition from Vermont farmers.

The farm community says now is not the time to expose farmers to more financial or legal risk.

A Great Blue Heron spotted on Lake Champlain with a small trout for breakfast.
Rob Swanson

Lately, you may have had the experience of waking in the wee hours of the morning to a cacophonous symphony of bird chirps and calls: a telltale sign that spring migration is in full swing and our feathered friends are returning to Vermont.

Now that they're here, it's time for Vermont Edition's spring bird show.

courtesy

This Saturday is the 48th annual Green Up Day, when volunteers across the state collect litter from roadsides and public spaces.

Blue-green algae blooms, like this one photographed in the summer of 2014 in Lake Champlain, have many in the state concerned. A new draft plan proposes funding sources for water cleanup efforts.
Taylor Dobbs / VPR FILE

The Vermont House on Friday advanced a bill that raises taxes to fund clean water programs.

New England’s power grid operator is getting pushback on a study that said some worst-case scenarios could lead to rolling blackouts in the region by 2024.

Cynthia Crawford, www.creaturekinships.net

Vermont’s weather has always been unpredictable, but as climate change brings new and even more uncertain conditions, I’ve taken to tracking weather patterns by the appearance or absence of dooryard birds.

Amy Kolb Noyes / VPR

All sorts of handy people spent a recent Saturday in Hardwick volunteering to fix other peoples' broken stuff, and passing on a little of their know-how.

Pages