Environment

Inner Harbor Project

There was a time when groups of loud teens hanging out at the Inner Harbor were seen as creating problems, a lot of arrests for disorderly conduct, which was a concern especially for tourists.  But that has changed since the Inner Harbor Project began hiring youth to work as part of a street team and bridge the gap with adults and other people who use the space.

Friday morning the organization unveiled its latest effort, a set of public teen-designed guidelines.

“We’re standing near the amphitheater. And we have just installed our new heart as of this morning,” explains Diamond Sampson, a 19 year old employee of the Inner Harbor Project.

Barrier Islands Take A Pounding

Jan 29, 2016
Patrick J. Henderson via USFWS and Highcamera.com

The storm that paralyzed Baltimore last weekend also took a toll on ocean front communities. A section of Ocean City’s fishing pier collapsed into boiling seas. And farther south, wind gusts of up to 85 miles an hour whipped up pounding surf that carried away parts of the beach and parking lot at Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge. That may be normal for a barrier island, but it's a huge problem for the nearby town of Chincoteague.

Joel McCord

Five years ago, Maryland oysters most likely were caught wild by a commercial waterman dredging the Chesapeake Bay bottom. Now, it’s increasingly likely those oysters were farm raised as the state’s aquaculture program has grown exponentially. 

    

As expected, the Baltimore County Council voted Monday night to phase out the county's storm water management fee. WYPR's John Lee was there and joined Morning Edition host Matt Tacka to talk about how the county will go about getting rid of the fee.

John Lee

The Baltimore County Council is expected to vote tonight to phase out the county’s storm water management fee by July 2017. But the repeal of the so-called “rain tax” is proving to be a politically bumpy ride.

The Delmarva Fox Squirrel Out Of Danger, Sort Of

Nov 13, 2015
Pamela D'Angelo

The Eastern Shore’s Delmarva Fox Squirrel showed up on the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s first-ever endangered species list back in 1967, along with the bald eagle and the Florida manatee. The eagle came off that list in 2007, the service has been talking about removing the manatee for two years, and Friday the service officially removed the squirrel from its federally protected designation. 

Delaware Lags in Chesapeake Clean-up

Nov 13, 2015
Annie Ropeik

The states in the Chesapeake Bay watershed have been working to drastically reduce the amount of pollutants and sediment they put into bay waterways by 2025. But some are moving more quickly than others. According to a recent report from the Environmental Protection Agency, Delaware is far off track to meet its halfway milestones in 2017 and at least part of the reason is the lack of money. 

John Lee

The Baltimore County Council plans to repeal the county’s storm water management fee. All seven members of the Council said Monday they are united to phase out the so-called rain tax over the next two years.

via flickr

Back in the 80s, the Environmental Protection Agency began requiring power companies to install "scrubbers" in the smokestacks of their coal fired plants to capture pollutants before they got into the air. And that did a reasonable job of cleaning up the air we breathe.

But it damaged the water we drink because all that lead and arsenic and selenium trapped in the smokestacks had to go somewhere. It went, unregulated, into thousands of miles of rivers and streams, making power plants the worst water polluters in the nation.


Christopher Connelly/WYPR

Huge amounts of crude oil are passing through Maryland every year by rail. A dramatic expansion of oil and gas production in the US has left drillers with a central question: How do you get the crude from the oil fields in the middle of the country to  refineries on the coasts. Railroads have been a big part of the answer, but some high-profile accidents have left many cities wondering if they’re at risk. On Wednesday, a panel of Baltimore City Councilmembers held a hearing to see what they could do.

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