Dialogue about climate change, once relegated to the arena of international conferences, chambers of government, and heated debates on TV and radio talk shows, has recently become a topic of ordinary conversation around the dinner table and the water cooler. People are talking about what they see around them: milder winters, earlier springs, the mounting frequency of extreme weather events in our own backyards or along washed-out roadways. The myth that climate change is not happening is increasingly impossible to believe. The evidence is in our faces. Read more
Fresh water is a precious natural resource that is likely to become even more precious as development pressures increase and competing demands for it grow. This will be so even in the Delaware River watershed, where at first blush you’d think there will always be enough clean, fresh water to go around, providing both drinking water and recreational opportunities for many millions of people. Read more
Electrifying rural America and bringing universal telephone access to its citizens were enormous undertakings in the past century. Now, we who live in rural America face the challenge of building a new telecommunications infrastructure that brings the potential to facilitate economic growth, job creation, and to enhance our way of life in the 21st century. Today, rural Americans including those of us who live in the Upper Delaware River Valley need to join the conversation about how we will get on the high-speed Internet highway via broadband technology or risk being left behind. Read more
Word came in that a nine-year-old boy had drowned on the Middle Delaware just as we were finishing up this editorial on water safety. The boy, who was fishing, slipped and fell into the water. His family and a boat passing by tried to rescue him. He was not wearing a lifejacket.
Who does, when they’re fishing from the river’s banks?
Well, hopefully more of us will, and we will help spread the word, especially as our region becomes more and more popular. Read more
Last weekend’s Upper Delaware BioBlitz on a 63.5-acre wildlife preserve near Starlight, PA got us thinking about the value of biodiversity. This bioblitz was an inventory of as many species—animals, plants, birds, fish, reptiles, amphibians, insects, fungi and other life—as teams of biologists and volunteers could find and identify in 24 hours. [See Scott Rando’s feature article and photos on page 24.] Read more
Guest editorial by SARAH WILSON
On June 15th I was handed a piece of paper stating that I had successfully graduated high school. In my eyes it was meant to stand for accomplishment, hard work and liberation, but I saw nothing but a piece of paper. My four years of high school cannot be paraphrased with paper and ink, cannot be hung above the fireplace. There were days I didn’t think I would make it through; there were days I never wanted to end; you can’t commemorate that by handing me a piece of laminated paper. Read more
The clock is ticking in Pennsylvania (PA) for state government to decide whether to accept federal funds to expand Medicaid to cover an estimated 613,000 uninsured Pennsylvanians now eligible under Obamacare, aka the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA), which will be fully implemented nationwide in 2014. As this month winds down, PA lawmakers are working to complete a state budget for the coming fiscal year, and what the budget looks like in the end will depend on whether there is an influx of federal Medicaid funds or not. Read more
Last week, Connecticut’s legislature did the right thing when it passed a bill (the vote was 134 to 3) requiring food manufacturers to label products that contain genetically modified (GM) ingredients. Connecticut Governor Dannel Malloy indicated he would sign the bill into law, making Connecticut the first state in the nation to pass such broad legislation. Read more