11:30 am
Tue April 15, 2014

Night Owls (And Vampires) Rejoice: Watch The ‘Blood Moon,’ A Lunar Eclipse (Video)

The blood moon over California Tuesday morning.
Doug Jones flickr.com/photos/dougj55/

Did you forget to set your alarm overnight to catch the "blood moon?" NASA has posted video of Tuesday morning's total lunar eclipse. Watch it:

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2:09 pm
Fri April 4, 2014

The Galveston Bay Oil Spill Aftermath: Hundreds Of Birds Covered With Oil

Responders work to clean the remaining oil – with pompoms, rakes and power washers – from some of the worst hit parts of Galveston Island.
Petty Officer 1st Class Andrew Kendrick U.S. Coast Guard

Coast Guard crews and wildlife advocates have recovered or spotted hundreds of shorebirds covered in oil in the aftermath of a collision in late March between two ships in Galveston Bay that resulted in a spill of up to 168,000 gallons of fuel oil. Many are dead, those still alive have little hope for survival, and officials say they expect to find more.

“When a bird has oil coating its eyes and bill, it’s not capable of getting rid of it. Watching this is like watching them die in slow motion,” said David Newstead, a research scientist at the Corpus Christi-based nonprofit Coastal Bend Bays & Estuaries Program.

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8:55 pm
Tue April 1, 2014

When It Comes To Water Restrictions, How Far Should Fort Worth Go?

Since last June, Fort Worth has been restricting outdoor watering to twice a week because of drought conditions.
Doualy Xaykaothao KERA News

Update 10 p.m. Tuesday: The Fort Worth City Council has delayed for one week a vote to permanently restrict outdoor watering to twice a week. 

Council member W. B. Zimmerman asked for the additional time to educate the public about proposed conservation plans.

Sal Espino, who represents District 2, was opposed to the delay. He said: "I would be in favor of moving forward with this ordinance, imperfect as it may seem to some, and then later changing it or tweaking, because we've already been doing twice per week watering."  

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1:16 pm
Mon March 24, 2014

Oil Spill Cleanup Continues In Galveston Bay, While Houston Ship Channel Partially Reopens

A barge loaded with marine fuel oil sat partially submerged in the Houston Ship Channel over the weekend.
U.S. Coast Guard/KUHF

Update, 1:50 p.m. Tuesday: The Coast Guard partially reopened one of the nation's busiest seaports to ship traffic Tuesday, three days after a collision between a barge and a ship spilled up to 170,000 gallons of tar-like oil into the waters south of Houston.

Authorities said ships were being allowed through the Houston Ship Channel after their assessment teams deemed it was clear enough for passage. More than 100 ships on both sides of the channel were awaiting the reopening.

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12:14 pm
Tue March 18, 2014

Next 3 Months ‘Huge’ In Preventing Brutal Texas Summer

This lake in Rusk County was almost completely dried up in 2011.
Robert Burns, Texas A&M Agrilife Extension Service Flickr Creative Commons

Texans looking for relief from the drought are eagerly anticipating the chances of an El Niño event starting this summer, which could bring much wetter conditions. But the focus should actually be on the near-term, according to Victor Murphy, climate service program manager for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration in Fort Worth. Murphy says that the next three months, April, May and June, will be crucial to staving off another critically dry—and hot—summer.

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1:46 pm
Wed March 12, 2014

The Gas Well Next Door: How Drilling Changed in Fort Worth

Gated gas: brick wall surrounds well site near neighborhoods on Fort Worth's east side
Dave Fehling StateImpact

In some cities, behind neat brick walls and wrought iron fences, you might find rows of nice homes.

In Fort Worth, you might find a gas well.

“We’re still drilling wells. We have three sites that are actively drilling. We have 2,000 producing wells,” said Tom Edwards, a senior inspector with the City of Fort Worth’s gas drilling division.

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2:23 pm
Wed March 5, 2014

An Ancient, Rare Fish Returns To Caddo Lake In East Texas

Decades after the paddlefish was almost completely wiped out, it's coming back to Caddo Lake in East Texas.
Caddo Lake Institute

Deep beneath the surface of Texas' only naturally formed lake there used to swim a massive, open-mouthed dinosaur-era fish with a long snout and prized caviar. Now, decades after the paddlefish was almost completely wiped out, it's coming back to Caddo Lake in East Texas.

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4:28 pm
Tue January 21, 2014

Zebra Mussels Have Invaded Lake Lavon, U.S. Geological Survey Says

Zebra mussels have been detected in Lake Lavon.

Add another lake to the list of bodies of water in Texas that have been infested with zebra mussels.

The U.S. Geological Survey has confirmed the presence of zebra mussels in Lake Lavon – and the invasive species appears to be on the move.

The presence of live zebra mussels or their larvae had already been confirmed in five other Texas locations: Lakes Texoma, Ray Roberts, Lewisville, Bridgeport and Belton.

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9:13 am
Thu December 12, 2013

Environmental Group In Texas Watches SCOTUS Decision On EPA Pollution Rules

CPS Energy plant on Calaveras Lake.
Karen Fasimpaur Wikimedia Commons

Originally published on Wed December 11, 2013 3:54 pm

The U.S. Supreme Court is examining whether the Environmental Protection Agency overreached its authority with its regulations on cross-state pollution, but environmental groups in Texas say the EPA is simply operating within the confines of the Clean Air Act.

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12:39 pm
Tue October 22, 2013

Boiling Hot: How Fracking’s Gusher Of Geothermal Energy Is Wasted In Texas

Lead in text: 
Maria Richards, a researcher at Southern Methodist University's Geothermal Laboratory, talks with StateImpact Texas about geothermal power and why it's gotten a cold shoulder in the Lone Star state.
There are thousands of oil and gas wells in Texas that tap into the earth's supply of hot water, some of it a boiling hot 250 F. There are modern, high tech steam engines that could use the water to make electricity. Yet geothermal power has gotten a cold shoulder in the state.