Bay Journal

Chesapeake Notebook

News, notes and observations from the Bay Journal staff.

From black liquor to phosphorus to transparency, issues confront Assembly

The Maryland General Assembly is seated.

Maryland Lawmakers returned to Annapolis last week to meet as the General Assembly, with a full agenda and some different faces. Perhaps the most noticeable one will be Larry Hogan, the state’s new governor, and only the third Republican in the last 50 years to hold the office. His former boss, Robert Ehrlich, was the second, and before him, you had to go back to Spiro Agnew.

What does that mean for environmental legislation? Some environmental leaders fear the worst. And Hogan’s decision yesterday to pull the long-in-the-works phosphorus management tool did not inspire confidence in the environmental community, as many groups worked hard to get that regulation into law.

Rona Kobell

Wolf names leaders for Pennsylvania environmental agencies

Tom Wolf, who will be sworn in as the new Pennsylvania governor on Tuesday, last week named several veterans from previous administrations to head the state’s environmental and agricultural agencies. He also named two former environmental officials as top advisers on his staff.

Karl Blankenship

Did you miss Midday on the Bay? Catch it here

Thursday’s Midday on the Bay radio show talked about land. How we build on it. Why we save it. And when we should leave it alone.

Rona Kobell

Picture This

Tips from veteran Chesapeake Bay photographer Dave Harp about how to capture the perfect images from your outdoor travels.

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Pond paddle provides lovely setting for photos

I always try to get out and make some photos on the solstices and equinoxes,  and an assignment to illustrate a story about Trap Pond allowed me to chase the morning light there a few hours after this year’s Autumnal equinox.   It’s an amazingly beautiful patch of wild Delaware near Laurel and will be featured in the November issue of the Bay Journal.   The pond, created in the 18th century to power a saw mill to convert the trees into board feet of lumber,  is the epicenter of the northern most stand of bald cypress trees in the United States.   The relatively young trees in the middle of the pond were planted in the 1930’s when the water level  was drawn down to allow the trees to grow.    Once they’re heads are above the water they seem to do fine in an aquatic environment.  Be sure to look for a more complete story about Trap Pond State Park by Tom Horton in the November issue of the Bay Journal.

David Harp
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Order of Chaos

Photographers go to great lengths to make order out of chaos. A good photograph has a strong point of view, clean lines, generally good composition. In this case chaos IS the point. Anyone who has ever witnessed a flock of snow geese erupt into flight knows that the sight and sounds of those birds says chaos to the extreme.    This flock was photographed with a 200mm lens, 2x tele extender, Olympus E-5 camera, 1250/sec. @ f5.6. ISO 200. The scene was made at Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge just after sunrise, thin cloud cover.

David Harp
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January morning along the Choptank River

It was a very cold pre dawn January morning along the Choptank River.   Out to capture some winter scenes (since we didn't really have winter last year). I found this ice encrusted plant and made a photo in the early morning light.    Wanting more drama in the photo I waited until the rising sun barely kissed it and made another exposure. Sometimes is pays to wait for the light.Both photographs were made with an Olympus E-5, 12-60mm lens at 21mm.  

David Harp

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