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Inquirer Daily News

Archive: March, 2012

POSTED: Monday, March 19, 2012, 11:31 AM

Want to get better mileage?

In this morning's column, I offered a few ways to game the oil companies and keep your money in your pocket instead of theirs.  Which is also a way to save fuel and be a greener driver.

Do a google search for hypermiling, and you can find all sorts of additional tips.

POSTED: Saturday, March 17, 2012, 6:00 AM
Emerald ash borer. (USDA photo)

Detroit in 2005 was a sobering sight. Ash tree skeletons were everywhere.

The Inquirer had sent me there to write about the emerald ash borer, an insect that was killing every ash it got to, and was spreading fast. Officials figured it would make its way to Pennsylvania at some point, and the paper wanted me to find out what lay ahead.

As this morning's story detailed, the ash borer as now arrived in our midst in southeastern Pennsylvania. It was discovered in a condominium complex in Warrington, Bucks County, by an astute arborist who noticed woodpecker damage -- a telltale sign because the birds love the larvae that are killing the tree.

POSTED: Thursday, March 15, 2012, 6:49 PM

It's hardly a surprise that making energy efficiency improvements to buildings saves money and can benefit the environment in terms of reduced fossil fuel burning and reduced greenhouse gas emissions.

Study after study tells us that, and now here's another one.

Last week, Environment America released a report, "Building a Better America," showing that if the lessons of high-efficiency homes and buildings were applied to all buildings, the nation could reduce energy 24 percent by 2030.

POSTED: Wednesday, March 14, 2012, 6:12 PM

It's big and it's beautiful. It's got polar bears, wolves, whales, seals, foxes, albatrosses, the aurora and ice bergs the size of New York skyscrapers.

This is the world of the planet's two poles. An exploration, "Frozen Planet," starts this Sunday on the Discovery Channel, as the third installment in the BBC Earth series.

Firefly has published a companion book, by "Frozen Planet" executive producer Alastair Fothergill and Vanessa Berlowitz, who produced some of the episodes. 

POSTED: Wednesday, March 14, 2012, 5:30 PM

Yesterday, there was news of one or more chicks in the Tinicum eagle nest.

Now comes the first egg in the nest of the hawks who have taken up residence on a ledge of the Franklin Institute.  So viewership of the webcam feed, popular well beyond the region, is bound to skyrocket.

Stream videos at Ustream
POSTED: Tuesday, March 13, 2012, 5:49 PM

The timing is right.

The feeding behavior of the adults is unmistakable.

The conclusion: Bald eagle chicks have arrived!

POSTED: Friday, March 9, 2012, 1:57 PM

Today could be a big day in the ongoing drama of the Delaware River Basin Commission, a one-of-a-kind interstate and federal agency that oversees water quantity and quality in the vast watershed that provides drinking water for nearly 16 million people.

Of late, the commission has been the topic of debate, harangue and worse because it is holding up natural gas drilling in the watershed, which has presumed rich Marcellus shale gas reserves in its upper portions, including some northeastern Pennsylvania counties.

The commission has declared a moratorium until regulations can be adopted. But that has taken some time. And now funding pressure seems to be a new wrinkle.

POSTED: Wednesday, March 7, 2012, 1:57 PM

The Delaware River Basin Commission is meeting this afternoon, and the federal representative has just given an update on the attempt to develop regulations to govern natural gas activity in the basin.

Lt. Col. Philip M. Secrist of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers just said: "Back in November, the regulations were scheduled for a vote. It was postoned. Since then, the commissioners have continued work on those regulations. Specifically, using sound science, the commisioners are still reviewing the proposed regulations ... to ensure that they will be protective of the water resource. We do not have a firm date for those proposed regulations coming to a vote. But we are in discussions and are working together as a commission. I know that's on a lot of folks' minds. That's where we're at, at this point in time."

None of the other commissioners commented.

About this blog

GreenSpace is about environmental issues and green living. Bauers also writes a biweekly GreenSpace column about environmental health issues for the Inquirer’s Sunday “Health” section.

Sandy Bauers is the environment reporter for the Philadelphia Inquirer, where she has worked for more than 20 years as a reporter and editor. She lives in northern Chester County with her husband, two cats, a large vegetable garden and a flock of pet chickens.

Reach Sandy at

Sandy Bauers Inquirer GreenSpace Columnist
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