Monday, December 6, 2010

Vermont Environmental News, December 6, 2010

EPA orders Vt. farmer to restore Swanton wetlands |
A Vermont farmer is being ordered to restore three acres of wetlands that were filled to expand a corn field in Swanton.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency says that in 2006 Germain Bourdeau began to clear, grade, fill and alter the wetlands without first obtaining the permit required by the federal Clean Water Act.

The EPA's order says Bourdeau must, among other things, hire an experienced wetlands scientist to prepare a restoration plan that must be approved by federal officials, backfill a drainage ditch, remove any existing drainage structures and plant and seed the area with shrubs and saplings.
Vermont looking for environmental award nominees |
Vermont is seeking nominees for next year's Governor's Awards for Environmental Excellence.

The awards were started in 1993 to recognize Vermonters' work to protect natural resources, prevent pollution, and promote environmental sustainability.

Since then, 150 efforts by individuals, organizations, public agencies and businesses have been recognized.

The categories for the awards are pollution prevention; resource conservation; earth stewardship and resource protection; land use and land use planning; environmental justice and sustainability; education and outreach; and youth environmental citizen award.
Conn., Mass. seek energy-producing rocks |
Researchers are combing southern New England in search of rocks that will produce energy from deep within the earth.

Connecticut and Massachusetts are mapping areas with rocks containing natural radioactivity.

Connecticut state geologist Margaret Thomas said the rocks could produce energy through a process that captures heat and steam from drilling.
Solar system up at Omega | Brattleboro Reformer
Delta Energy Group completed the installation of a rooftop solar electric system last month, and it was mounted with a newly developed method, making it the first of its kind in Vermont.

One hundred twenty solar modules were adhered to the south-facing slope of the Omega Optical Building at the Delta Campus with the ground-breaking method, and the modules are wired to inverters that transform direct current electricity produced by the solar modules into alternating current (AC) electricity.