Erica Peterson

Environment Reporter

Erica reports on environment and energy issues for WFPL, which run the gamut from stories about the region’s biodiversity to coal mine safety and pollution issues. In the name of journalism, she’s gone spelunking, tagged mussels and taste-tested bourbon. Erica moved to Louisville in June 2011 from Charleston, West Virginia, where she worked for the state’s public radio and television affiliate. Besides Kentucky and West Virginia, she’s lived in New Jersey, Minnesota and Illinois. She lives with her husband in Louisville.

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Environment
6:42 am
Mon May 20, 2013

Local Author Explores Climate Change, Energy and the Keystone XL Pipeline in New Book

Ruka Press

A decision on the fate of the northern section of a pipeline that would transport oil from Canada to the United States isn’t expected for months, but advocates and opponents of the project are still staging demonstrations. A new book by a local author ties in local efforts to raise awareness about climate change with the larger issues surrounding the development of Canadian tar sands and the Keystone XL pipeline.

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Environment
5:04 pm
Thu May 16, 2013

It's Bike to Work Day

Roland45 Wikimedia Commons

Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer is encouraging commuters to think about making the trip by bicycle on Friday. It’s Bike to Work Day, and groups are meeting in six locations around Louisville and Southern Indiana to commute downtown together.

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Environment
3:22 pm
Thu May 16, 2013

Louisville Zoo's Oldest Polar Bear, Arki, Dies

Arki
Kyle Shepherd Louisville Zoo

Louisville Zoo officials say the zoo's oldest polar bear passed away today from unknown causes.

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Environment
5:52 pm
Wed May 15, 2013

Senate Advances McConnell Measure to Promote Fishing, Block Safety Restrictions Near Dams

Mitch McConnell
Credit U.S. Senate

A measure to stop the Army Corps of Engineers from restricting access to the Cumberland River near locks and dams is moving through Congress.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell added the amendment to a water resources bill that passed the Senate today.  In a news release, McConnell said restricting access to the water directly below dams would have a devastating effect on fishermen and the local economy.

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Environment
12:37 pm
Wed May 15, 2013

Air Pollution Board Approves Changes to Regulations

The Louisville Air Pollution Control Board has approved a suite of regulation reforms, including fee increases for some air pollution permits.

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Environment
3:59 pm
Tue May 14, 2013

Lees Lane Landfill Soil Testing Shows Contamination, But Source and Scope Still Unknown

A sign on the Lees Lane Landfill warns trespassers the site may be dangerous.
Erica Peterson WFPL

New soil sampling at the Lees Lane Landfill shows there’s still some contamination at the site, but further testing is needed to determine whether the heavy metals and toxic chemicals found in the tests originated at the landfill. 

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Environment
9:41 am
Tue May 14, 2013

Report: Declines in Central Appalachian Coal Production, Demand Will Continue

Harry Schaefer U.S. National Archives and Records Administration

A new report takes a comprehensive look at the numerous factors behind the decline in Central Appalachian coal production, and predicts that more production declines are in the future.

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Environment
5:56 pm
Mon May 13, 2013

Federal Data Shows Kentucky's Carbon Dioxide Emissions Increased from 2000-2010

Erica Peterson WFPL

New state-level data from the Energy Information Administration shows that carbon dioxide emissions fell in most states in the last decade. But Kentucky saw a slight increase in emissions.

Thirteen years ago, Kentucky was emitting 144.7 million metric tons of carbon dioxide, generated during electricity generation. Ten years later, that number was up to about 150 million metric tons. That’s more than a four percent increase.

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Environment
7:30 am
Mon May 13, 2013

New Air Monitor in Louisville Will Measure Vehicle Pollution

Credit Trimarc.org

Louisville’s Air Pollution Control District is moving forward with plans to place an air monitor near the Watterson Expressway. The monitor will measure concentrations of nitrogen dioxide, or “NOx.”

The Air Pollution Control District has chosen a site for the monitor; it’s at 1517 Durrett Lane, right next to I-264, and slightly west of Poplar Level Road. Now, the district is just waiting for the Environmental Protection Agency to approve the location.

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Environment
4:53 pm
Thu May 9, 2013

Group Says Rand Paul's Proposals Would Strip Environmental Protection

U.S. Senate

Kentucky Senator Rand Paul has introduced three amendments to a bill before the Senate that environmental groups say would gut protections for the environment.

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