Bay Journal

Whitney Pipkin

Green roofs help to curb polluted runoff, especially if space is limited

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When Rick Seavey first told municipal officials in Lancaster, PA, that he planned to install a green roof, they thought he was talking about paint color.

That was a decade ago, before affixing water-absorbing membranes and plants to the tops of buildings became a popular solution for businesses looking to absorb stormwater runoff from new construction. And the...

Want a piece of the Potomac? He’s got an island (or 3) to sell to you

No man is an island. But, for less than $175,000, a man (or woman) could buy three of them in the Potomac River — if he or she acts fast.

Real estate agent Buzz Mackintosh said the islands, about seven miles upstream of Williamsport, MD, have garnered interest from a handful of prospective buyers since going on the market earlier this year, but no one has taken the leap. Now,...

Teachers get hands wet to whet students’ interest in Bay

School’s out for the summer — unless you’re a teacher tasked with educating students about the Chesapeake Bay. Almost as soon as classes let out, 19 educators from Virginia, Maryland and the District of Columbia volunteered for a weeklong summer session that would bring them up to speed on their backyard watershed.

This program, led by the Chesapeake Bay Foundation, was one of...

Dolphin-spotting: the next big Chesapeake pastime?

Dolphins might be more common and wide-ranging in the Chesapeake Bay than once thought, if recent reports from citizen spotters are any indication.

Since a Chesapeake Dolphin Watch website launched at the end of June, 1,200 people have signed up and reported more than 500 dolphin sightings, often of 10 or more of the mammals at once.

“We knew anecdotally that dolphins were...

Dinner with a side of Bay 101

There are plenty of places where diners in Washington, DC, can find a decent surf and turf. But, instead of steaks, one chef chose to serve his recent six-course seafood dinner with a side of education — and far more than would fit in the small font on a menu.

At a pop-up dinner in a warehouse-like event space this month, Mackenzie Kitburi of Capital Taste Food Group invited...

Power line across James River one step closer to approval

A new transmission line that would carry electricity across a four-mile span of the James River has received a federal agency’s long-awaited nod of approval. But the $270-million undertaking still needs to earn permits at the state and local level this summer, and it is expected to continue facing vocal opposition from environmental and historic preservation groups.


Washington diplomats plant grasses in the Potomac, earn bragging rights 

Representatives from about a dozen nations got a lot more than their feet wet recently when they waded into the Potomac River to plant Bay grasses they had personally cultivated. But after a six-month competition only one country got to claim the esteemed prize for raising the “best grass.”

Those bragging rights went to China in a friendly contest to see who could grow the...

VA group buys land to ensure carnivorous plant stays in the picture

One would think that the purple pitcher, a bug-eating, water-collecting plant — like the Venus flytrap but without its reflexes — could fend for itself.

But the carnivorous Sarracenia purpurea, which is native to portions of the Chesapeake Bay watershed, has been no match for the convergence of factors altering its historic stomping grounds — rapid development, reforestation...

Localities not buying into nutrient trading – for now

Despite being touted as a less costly approach to curbing stormwater pollution, nutrient trading has yet to catch on among Chesapeake Bay localities. A recent report by the World Resources Institute and the Chesapeake Bay Foundation details the hurdles that are keeping the market-based approach from getting off the ground.

The report’s authors worked alongside officials in...

Dominion reconsidering coal ash storage plans in VA

Earlier this year, it seemed inevitable that Dominion Virginia Power would be permanently storing coal ash underground at a power station near the Potomac River. The site is the first of four along Chesapeake Bay tributaries where the utility is looking to entomb the accumulated residue from decades of burning coal for power. What happens at Possum Point near Quantico could set a...

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About Whitney Pipkin

Whitney Pipkin's avatar Whitney Pipkin writes at the intersection of food, agriculture and the environment from her home base in Northern Virginia. Her work for the Bay Journal often focuses on the Potomac and Anacostia rivers, and she is a fellow of the Institute for Journalism & Natural Resources. .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).


Ernst Seed: Restoring the Native Balance
Valliant and Associates

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