WAMU 88.5 : News

Slow Down: Whale Crossing

Play associated audio

Endangered whales off the coast of Virginia and Maryland are getting a break, as federal agents are telling ships to slow down for the creatures.

There are only about 350 northern right whales left on the planet.

They suffer from falling birthrates, something that scientists haven't figured out, but another way their numbers can fall is by collision with large ships. That's why the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has set a seasonal speed limit of 10 knots--that's about 12 miles per hour--for large commercial ships in certain zones from Rhode Island to Georgia.

The limits are in effect from November through April.

The Virginian-Pilot reports that six vessels have been cited for a total of 42 violations in the last year, with fines ranging from $16,000 to $44,000 per company.

NPR

On Television, More Transgender Characters Come Into Focus

Now that it's more common to see gay characters on TV, is the medium turning to transgender people for fresh stories? NPR's Neda Ulaby looks at TV's crop of transgender and "gender fluid" characters.
NPR

Slowly And Sweetly, Vietnam's Chocolate Industry Grows

French colonists planted cacao in Vietnam in the 1800s, but the crop was outpaced by coffee and cashews. Now French expats are helping the country become a respected producer of high-end chocolate.
NPR

Pennsylvania Congresswoman Goes All In For Obamacare

Does Rep. Allyson Schwartz's pro-Affordable Care Act television ad signal a new thinking among Democrats running in statewide races?
NPR

Brazil Becomes One Of The First To Adopt Internet 'Bill Of Rights'

President Dilma Rouseff signed the bill into law to kick off an international conference about the governance of the Internet.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.