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
1:09 pm
Mon November 12, 2012

Work to Resume Tuesday to Drain Chemicals at Derailment Site

Louisville Metro

Crews working at the site of a train derailment in southwestern Jefferson County plan to drain hazardous chemicals from the tankers on Tuesday.

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Environment
10:21 am
Mon November 12, 2012

Third Meeting on Floyds Fork Section of Louisville Loop is Tomorrow

Metro Parks is one step closer to finalizing the Floyds Fork segment of the Louisville Loop. There’s a public meeting tomorrow to get feedback from the community.

When it’s completed, the Louisville Loop will be a 100-mile bike path circling the city. Right now, there are 23 miles completed—from downtown and along the Ohio River into southwest Louisville—and the other sections of the trail are in various phases of planning.

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Environment
2:48 pm
Fri November 9, 2012

Coal Company, Officials Plead Guilty to Mine Safety Violations

Manalapan Mining Company--which operates in Harlan County--and two of the company's top officials are pleading guilty to charges they willfully violated mine safety rules.

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Environment
1:50 pm
Thu November 8, 2012

LG&E Cost Savings Means Rates Won't Rise As Much As Predicted

The smokestacks at LG&E's coal-fired Cane Run power plant.
Erica Peterson WFPL

Louisville Gas and Electric says it doesn’t expect customer bills to increase as much as the company predicted last year.

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Environment
1:28 pm
Thu November 8, 2012

Environmental Experts Lay Out Goals for Obama's Second Term

The New York Times has experts in several fields weighing in this morning on what they say should be President Obama's priorities for the next four years. Two of them spoke about energy and the environment, and both are worth a read in their entirety.

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Environment
6:08 pm
Wed November 7, 2012

In His Second Term, How Will Obama Approach Fossil Fuels?

The smokestacks at LG&E's coal-fired Cane Run power plant.
Erica Peterson WFPL

For the past four years, officials in Kentucky’s coal industry have fought President Obama’s steps to further regulate emissions from coal plants and pollution from coal mining. Now that the president has won re-election, they wonder if anything will change in a second term.

President Obama’s administration has put into motion numerous regulations that affect the coal industry. But many of these aren’t actually in effect yet…they’re still moving through the rule making process, or are tied up in court.

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Environment
1:41 pm
Wed November 7, 2012

Official Says Two Pike County Coal Mines Will Restart Production

Decumanus Wikimedia Commons

A coal company plans to restart production at two mines in eastern Kentucky.

Pike County Judge-Executive Wayne Rutherford says 150 coal miners in his county will soon go back to work, but he can’t say for which company.

Rutherford was told the miners had worked at two idled mines in the county, but the company is still working on permits and doesn’t want to make the news public yet. Even so, Rutherford hailed the news as a sign that more coal jobs will be returning to eastern Kentucky.

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Politics
10:10 pm
Tue November 6, 2012

GOP Candidate Pence Elected Indiana Governor

Republican Mike Pence has been elected governor of Indiana. 

Pence is a current six-term U.S. Congressman who represents the district east of Indianapolis. He ran against former Indiana House speaker John Gregg, a Democrat, and Libertarian Rupert Boneham, who was once a contestant on the reality show “Survivor.”

The race was tighter than initially expected, with Gregg and Pence virtually neck-in-neck all evening.

Politics
9:42 pm
Tue November 6, 2012

Clark Defeats Thieneman in District 37 Senate Race

Kentucky state Senator Perry Clark, a Democrat, has been reelected to the District 37 seat in southwest Louisville.

Clark beat Republican challenger Chris Thieneman with 58 percent of the vote. Thieneman outspent Clark in the race, but was plagued in the last weeks of his campaign with a lawsuit that questioned his residency. With Clark’s win, the lawsuit is essentially rendered moot, and Clark says he’s confident he would have won even without the legal challenge.

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