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 and son in Louisville.

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Local News
11:00 am
Tue May 29, 2012

Roads Closed Due to Trees, Flooding Across Louisville

Morning rain and flooding have closed streets across Louisville.

According to MetroSafe spokeswoman Jody Johnson, a water main break near the University of Louisville has exacerbated the flood conditions. The break is at Cardinal Boulevard, east of Floyd Street, and Johnson says workers from the Louisville Water Company are on site.

More news and closures:

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Local News
9:00 am
Tue May 29, 2012

Flash Flood Warning Declared for Jefferson County, Southern Indiana

Some road updates from our Facebook fans.

UPDATE 11:07am: The National Weather Service has revised its flash flood warning; it’s only in effect until 11:30am.

UPDATE 10:22am: Flooding at the University of Louisville prompted the cancellation of classes until 11:00am. Officials say they’ll decide soon about classes for the rest of the day.

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Local News
7:00 am
Tue May 29, 2012

Alltech Announces Prize for Best Eastern Kentucky Economic Development Plan

Eastern Kentucky, like much of Appalachia, is beset by high poverty and high unemployment, and the limited investment in the area from the state hasn’t changed the situation.

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Environment
6:00 am
Mon May 28, 2012

Influx of Insects Could Cause Problems for Tulip Poplars This Summer

An old pest is causing new problems in the Ohio River Valley. The tulip scale insect has always preyed on tulip poplar trees, but the past two years of mild winters mean there’s a much higher population than usual.

The tulip scale insect attaches to twigs on tulip poplar trees, sucks sap out of the bark and releases a clear, sticky sugary substance that’s commonly called “honeydew.” The honeydew is annoying—it falls onto lawns and cars—but the real danger is to the trees.

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Environment
6:00 am
Mon May 28, 2012

Kentucky State Parks Begins Energy Retrofit of Nine Western Kentucky Parks

Kentucky’s state parks system is two months into a major energy savings project at nine of its parks. The project is part of Governor Steve Beshear’s Initiative for Smart Government, which is designed to reduce government waste.

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Environment
2:48 pm
Thu May 24, 2012

EPA Hears Testimony on New Carbon Pollution Rule

The Environmental Protection Agency is in the midst of day-long hearings in Washington, D.C. and Chicago on proposed new standards from carbon pollution from power plants.

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Environment
4:05 pm
Wed May 23, 2012

EPA Raises Concerns About LG&E Plan For Trimble County Coal Ash Landfill

LG&E's Trimble County power plant.

The Environmental Protection Agency has concerns about the environmental impact of a 218-acre coal ash landfill in Trimble County proposed by Louisville Gas and Electric.

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Environment
12:01 am
Wed May 23, 2012

New Rankings Say Louisville's Parks System Needs Work

Louisville has scored near the bottom on a new ranking of park systems in the nation’s 40 largest cities. The city came in 38th.

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Politics
10:16 pm
Tue May 22, 2012

McGarvey Wins Democratic Nod in 19th District Senate Race

Morgan McGarvey has won the Democratic nomination for Kentucky’s 19th Senate district.

McGarvey is an attorney in private practice in Louisville who ran on a platform of building the Ohio River Bridges Project and expanding the state’s tax base. During the campaign, he racked up endorsements from former State Auditor Crit Luallan, Attorney General Jack Conway, and state Senator Tim Shaughnessy, who currently holds the seat and isn’t running for re-election. McGarvey’s website also touts his support of biodiesel.

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Environment
5:35 pm
Tue May 22, 2012

Kentucky Advocates for Safe Chemical Bill Lobby in Washington

Advocates for safe chemical legislation are in Washington D.C. today lobbying Kentucky’s congressional delegation to support updates to the nation’s toxic chemicals regulations.

Monica Unseld is a biologist and professor from Bardstown who made the trip. She says the country’s 36-year-old Toxic Substances Control Act is outdated and the industry is woefully unregulated.

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