Dan Charles
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North Dakota Officials Block Wind Power In Effort To Save Coal

North Dakota Officials Block Wind Power In Effort To Save Coal

Clean energy shift hits a snag in North Dakota Across the country, coal plants are shutting down. Wind turbines are going up. But the transition can be rocky. In North Dakota, some officials are trying to defend coal by blocking new wind turbines.Toggle more optionsHeard onToggle more optionsNorth Dakota has lots of coal. It also has strong and consistent winds. It might be the perfect spot to showcase the long-awaited "energy transition" from climate-warming fossil fuels to climate-saving renewables. Yet that transition has hit a snag. Two counties in the state have enacted drastic...

Feb 25
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North Dakota officials block wind power in effort to save coal

North Dakota officials block wind power in effort to save coal

North Dakota has lots of coal. It also has strong and consistent winds. It might be the perfect spot to showcase the long-awaited "energy transition" from climate-warming fossil fuels to climate-saving renewables. Yet that transition has hit a snag. Two counties in the state have enacted drastic restrictions on new wind projects in an attempt to save coal mining jobs, despite protests from landowners who'd like to rent their land to wind energy companies. It's a sign of how difficult that transition can be for communities that depend on coal for jobs and tax revenue. The economic benefits...

Feb 25
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New Evidence Shows Fertile Soil Gone From Midwestern Farms

New Evidence Shows Fertile Soil Gone From Midwestern Farms

Farms In The Midwest Have Lost Much Of Their Most Fertile Soil One third of the cropland in the upper Midwest has entirely lost its fertile topsoil, according to a new study. Other scientists doubt that figure, but agree that soil loss is a big problem.Toggle more optionsHeard onToggle more optionsFarming has destroyed a lot of the rich soil of America's Midwestern prairie. A team of scientists just came up with a staggering new estimate for just how much has disappeared. The most fertile topsoil is entirely gone from a third of all the land devoted to growing crops across the upper...

Feb 24
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As Cities Grapple With Climate Change, Gas Utilities Fight To Stay In Business

As Cities Grapple With Climate Change, Gas Utilities Fight To Stay In Business

Natural Gas Battles Local Climate Efforts Natural gas utilities face a bleak future in a world increasingly concerned about climate change. An NPR investigation shows how they work to block local climate action and protect their business.Toggle more optionsHeard onToggle more optionsFacing the rising threat of wildfire and extreme drought, Flagstaff, Ariz., unveiled an ambitious effort two years ago to cut the heat-trapping emissions that drive climate change. A critical part of Flagstaff's climate plan proposed that all new construction get to net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2040 and...

Feb 22
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In A Grain Of Golden Rice, A World Of Controversy Over GMO Foods

In A Grain Of Golden Rice, A World Of Controversy Over GMO Foods

In A Grain Of Golden Rice, A World Of Controversy Over GMO Foods : The Salt A rice enriched with beta-carotene promises to boost the health of poor children around the world. But critics say golden rice is also a clever PR move for a biotech industry driven by profits, not humanitarianism.Toggle more optionsHeard onToggle more optionsThere's a kind of rice growing in some test plots in the Philippines that's unlike any rice ever seen before. It's yellow. Its call it "." It's been genetically modified so that it contains beta-carotene, the source of vitamin A. Millions of people in Asia and...

March 7, 2013
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As Biotech Crops Lose Their Power, Scientists Push For New Restrictions

As Biotech Crops Lose Their Power, Scientists Push For New Restrictions

Some GMO Crops Are Losing Their Resistance To Pests Some of the first GMOs – corn and cotton plants that have been genetically modified to fend off insects – are running into problems. Bugs have become resistant to them because they've been overused.Some of the most popular products of biotechnology — corn and cotton plants that have been genetically modified to fend off insects — are no longer offering the same protection from those bugs. Scientists say that the problem results from farmers overusing the crops, and are pushing for new regulations. These crops were the original genetically...

Oct 29
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How To Have Your Solar Farm And Keep Your Regular Farm, Too

How To Have Your Solar Farm And Keep Your Regular Farm, Too

Solar Farms Can Be Compatible With Farming Large-scale solar farms are running into opposition from people who want to save farmland. Now solar companies are trying to combine solar and farming.Clean, abundant, solar power comes with a price. It requires lots of land, and in some places that's provoking opposition from people who want to preserve farmland. In southern New Jersey, for instance, a company called wants to build an 800-acre solar power station, and the Pilesgrove Township planning board is hearing from local citizens who don't like it one bit. "The carpetbaggers have come south...

October 9, 2020
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