Topics: Environment

Town Eyes Parcel For Fishing Gear Storage

By: Alan Pollock

CHATHAM — The select board is seeking a site where commercial fishermen can store their gear, where it won't interfere with airport operations – or rankle nearby neighbors. They may have found one on a sliver of land between the wastewater plant and transfer station. For decades, the town has allowed fishermen to lease space on the airport property to store gear that's not being used, but the airport commissio...

HARWICH — Zoe Simmons, a student in the Nauset schools, has leveraged the power of her school newspaper to spread environmental awareness. Her good work caught the attention of the nonprofit group CARE for the Cape and Islands, which named her their 2021 Youth Award recipient. When she entered Nauset Regional Middle School as a sixth grader last year, the Harwich resident was looking for a way to put her writi...

Study Identifies High Risk Flood Areas In Orleans

By: Ryan Bray

ORLEANS -- With town roadways facing an increased risk of flooding in the coming years, local officials are being asked to prioritize which stretches of road are most in need of protection. The Cape Cod Commission and Woods Hole Group presented findings of its analysis of the town's low-lying roads to Orleans officials Nov. 16. The presentation, which was held remotely via Zoom, was the first of several public...

ORLEANS – As athletic director at Nauset Regional High School, John Mattson has plenty on his plate. But in addition to scheduling and rescheduling games as needed for the school's 12 varsity and junior varsity fall programs, he's taken upon himself the added task of trying to help recruit bus drivers. The Cape Cod Collaborative, which handles bus transportation for Nauset, Monomoy and four other Cape district...

Drought Worsens, Despite Ida

By: Alan Pollock

In what seems to be a case of climatological bad luck, one corner of Cape Cod is still experiencing a drought, despite the recent rains from the remnants of Hurricane Ida. Chatham and Harwich are still way behind in seasonal rainfall, while other parts of the state – and even the Cape – have recently experienced heavy rains and flooding. Following a dry spring and summer that prompted towns to impose restricti...

Nature Connection: Rock Of Ages

By: Mary Richmond

Like many others, I often seek solace in familiar places where I’ve enjoyed solitude and refreshment of my spirit, if not enlightenment. Recently I was checking out possible locations for my outdoor painting class in Brewster. It was quite early and the sun, which would bring miserable heat later in the day, was still low behind the trees. Landscaping crews were out in force, and I wasn’t able to access the ar...

CHATHAM — It might seem like climate change is an unstoppable juggernaut that can only be slowed by international treaties and sweeping reforms . But actions we take in our own houses, businesses, town halls and back yards can make a worthwhile change as well. That was the message from a panel of local experts in a forum on climate resilience Saturday. Janet Williams of the Chatham Climate Action Network ...

HARWICH — When it comes to activities with a huge carbon footprint, commercial air travel has to be near the top of the list. But thanks to the vision of Harwich’s Dan Wolf and his brother Jim, green air travel could soon be coming to the region. Their company, Cape Air, is making aviation history by purchasing a nine-passenger all-electric plane. The Wolf brothers spoke at a virtual forum held recently by t...

ORLEANS — “Pick up after yourself” is the command many of us heard in childhood. Some took it so seriously that they pick up after everyone else. The most many of us do when we see a can by the side of the road, if we even notice it, is to curse the miscreant who tossed it there. Others assume responsibility for fixing the problem. April and Earth Day bring a lot of the latter together for targeted clean-...

CHATHAM — One of the things Christie Beckley likes best about her hometown is, of course, its beaches. But with the effects of climate change already becoming clear, the Monomoy Regional High School sophomore wants Chatham to take steps to preserve those beaches in the face of sea level rise and erosion. She recently outlined her plan for the parks and recreation commission. “It’s so important that our beaches...

Selectmen Seek Dialogue And Data On Nips

By: Alan Pollock

CHATHAM — Treading lightly over what they admit is a complicated issue, selectmen Tuesday opened a dialogue about the proliferation of single-serve “nip” bottles of alcohol. The 15-milliliter bottles litter area roadways, and the problem has led other towns – including Harwich – to consider banning their sale. Nip bans are already in place on the Upper Cape, Selectman Jeffrey Dykens noted. When he walks Route ...

Your Property Might Flood In A Storm

By: Alan Pollock

Even If FEMA Maps Say It Won’t Time was, if you wanted to know which parts of town flooded during major hurricanes, you’d ask old timers. Then FEMA developed maps showing flood zones down to the property level. But both methods have a major shortcoming: they rely on past events to predict the future. The problem is, the environment is changing quickly, and some of the baseline assumptions used in convention...

Cleanup Of Handler Property To Begin

By: William F. Galvin

New Owners Mum On Future Plans HARWICH — A major site remediation plan is being planned for the former Handler’s Auto Parts property along Route 28 in Harwich Port as the new owners begin to redevelop the two-acre site located above the inner Allen Harbor marsh. Future plans for the site are still not clear, but a thorough site remediation for contaminated soils and remediation of disturbed areas was presen...

HARWICH — The Conservation Law Foundation and the Wychmere Beach Club have agreed to a proposed settlement in a lawsuit filed by CLF alleging that the resort was illegally discharging pollution into marine waters. The settlement would result in reduced pollution, new efforts to address nitrogen sources and protect the Wychmere Harbor Watershed, according to a press release from CLF. It follows a U.S. Supreme C...

Middle Road Solar Array Wins Approval

By: Tim Wood

CHATHAM – An agreement between neighbors and a California-based renewable energy company on a buffer area has cleared the way for approval of a solar power array off Middle Road. The zoning board of appeals on Feb 27 approved a special permit for NextGrid's solar facility on the 15-acre sandpit owned by J.W. Dubis and Sons. The facility could be generating power by summer. Property owners along West Pond Ro...

St. Christopher's To Go Solar

By: Tim Wood

CHATHAM – Honoring a commitment to be good stewards of the earth, St. Christopher's Episcopal Church will be installing solar panels on the roof of its parish hall. The historic business district commission last week unanimously approved the 86-panel, roof-mount solar array, which will be placed on the southeast-facing roof of the hall, adjacent to the Gallery building property, and will be visible from Main S...