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Mysteries Persist Surrounding West Virginia Chemical Spill

West Virginia officials told residents Monday to flush out their home water systems before using the tap water again. Tests at the affected water treatment plant show almost no contamination. However, some toxicologists say, the spill shows how little is known about many chemicals in common use.

California's Pot Farms Could Leave Salmon Runs Truly Smoked

Marijuana cultivation is booming along the state's North Coast. But these plantations, critics say, guzzle enormous amounts of water while also spilling pesticides and fertilizers into waterways that are important sources of the West Coast's salmon species.
WAMU 88.5

Maryland Environmentalists Pushing For 18-Month Delay Of Fracking Permits

Opponents of the drilling technique hydraulic fracturing, commonly called "fracking," are asking that the Maryland General Assembly approve an 18-month moratorium on the practice in the state.
WAMU 88.5

Fracking Opponents Renew Call For Moratorium In Maryland

Parts of western Maryland lie on top of shale and could produce natural gas using the controversial fracking technique, but opponents want more time to study the potential downsides.

WAMU 88.5

Rare Irruption Of Snowy Owls In Maryland Captivates Scientists

Snowy Owls are migrating south from the Arctic and an unprecedented number have been seen on the coast in Maryland and Delaware.


The Upside Of The Bitter Cold: It Kills Bugs That Kill Trees

Scientists say that the freezing weather can help reduce the population of a beetle that harms trees, as well as other invasive species. In Minnesota, up to 80 percent of the beetle's larvae may die off, buying some time for those who feared its negative effects on the ash tree population.

A Green-Movement Website Shakes Up The Debate Over GMOs

If you're confused by the fight over genetically modified food — and even more if your mind is already made up — you might want to turn to an investigation of the topic carried out by the environmental website Grist. Instead of preaching to the deep-green choir, Grist's in-depth series questioned its faith.

When Big Carnivores Go Down, Even Vegetarians Take The Hit

A drop in the numbers of fierce beasts worldwide might seem like good news for deer and antelope. But expanding herds of grass-eaters leave stream banks naked and vulnerable to erosion, and can even change the stream's course, according to scientists calling for more protection of large predators.

Natural Gas Boom Cuts Into Pennsylvania's State Forests

Pennsylvania is the fastest-growing state for natural gas production, but the development is cutting through swathes of previously unbroken forests. Some scientists say this could affect wildlife, which perform important functions like climate and insect control.