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
9:11 am
Tue November 20, 2012

The Dust Bowl: Ken Burns Chronicles an Environmental Disaster

Courtesty of the Associated Press

Last night, the second part of Ken Burns' latest documentary premiered on PBS. "The Dust Bowl" tells the story of the people who farmed the Great Plains in the 1920s and 1930s; many stayed on once the ground dried up and dust storms became commonplace, while others moved west to find work.

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Environment
11:03 am
Mon November 19, 2012

World Bank Calls for Action on Climate Change

A report commissioned by the World Bank says the Earth is on a path to a climate that is 4 degrees Celsius warmer by the end of the century. In order to slow this down, world leaders will have to do more to reduce greenhouse gas emissions than they're currently doing.

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Environment
9:21 am
Mon November 19, 2012

Public Invited to Comment On Proposed LG&E Rate Increase

The Public Service Commission will hold a hearing tomorrow evening to let the public weigh in on a proposed utility rate increase.

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Environment
3:55 pm
Fri November 16, 2012

Report Quantifies Uneven Effects of Coal Plants on Minority, Low-Income Communities

The Rockport Generating Station in Rockport, Indiana.
Erica Peterson WFPL

The NAACP and several other groups released a report yesterday that chronicles the undue burden low-income and minority communities bear from coal-fired power plants.

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Environment
3:43 pm
Thu November 15, 2012

Patriot Coal to Phase Out Mountaintop Removal Mining

Gabe Bullard WFPL

As part of a proposed settlement with environmental groups, St. Louis-based Patriot Coal has agreed to phase out mountaintop removal mining at several of its mines in West Virginia, saying the controversial mining practice isn’t in the company’s best interest.

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Environment
11:51 am
Thu November 15, 2012

U of L Announces $50,000 Prize for Innovative Energy Projects

The University of Louisville has announced a new award for game-changing work in renewable energy and energy efficiency.

The Leigh Ann Conn Prize for Renewable Energy is named after the late daughter of two of the major supporters of the U of L’s Conn Center for Renewable Energy Research. It’s intended to recognize innovative work that will likely have a global effect, and carries a $50,000 award.

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Environment
9:00 am
Thu November 15, 2012

Listen: Wendell Berry Discusses Land, Energy and His New Book

Wendell Berry. By Photographer/original uploader: David Marshall/w:User:brtom1 [CC-BY-SA-2.0 (www.creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
David Marshall Wikimedia Commons

Kentucky author, farmer and environmentalist Wendell Berry was on The Diane Rehm Show yesterday to talk about his new book “A Place in Time.” It’s a collection of 20 stories about life in the fictional small town of Port William. Besides discussing and reading from the book, Berry also talked about the relationship between a land and people, and his views on energy and the environment.

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Environment
2:53 pm
Wed November 14, 2012

Obama Addresses Climate Change in First Post-Election Press Conference

During the presidential campaign, both President Obama and Governor Mitt Romney seemed to be avoiding any comment on climate change, and what policies either would pursue if elected. Now that Mr. Obama has been elected to a second term, he still won't say what he'll do about the issue in the next four years.

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Environment
3:43 pm
Tue November 13, 2012

Report: Economics Don't Make Sense for the Nation's Costliest Coal-Fired Units

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

A new report says many of the nation’s coal-fired power plants won’t be competitive once they’re upgraded with pollution controls.

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Environment
9:00 am
Tue November 13, 2012

What's Former Coal Exec Don Blankenship Up To in Kentucky?

Brianhayden1980 Wikimedia Commons

Former Massey Energy CEO Don Blankenship is back on the radar, but apparently not currently seeking any coal mining permits in Kentucky.

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