Volume 13, Issue 14 ~ April 7 - 13, 2005
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Way Downstream

In Virginia, authorities have found nasty pfiesteria microbes in the York River and warned against eating fish from the tainted waters. A state task force is investigating fish kills in six other nearby waterways amid concerns among environmental advocates that nutrient pollution could be the culprit...

In Annapolis, the Agriculture Department says that farmers failed to file nutrient-management plans for more than half of Maryland's farmland. The Associated Press reported that the state plans to send out letters later this month threatening fines of up to $250 initially and $100 a day for ongoing violations. To avoid trouble, landowners can sign up online at www.mda.state.md.us...

In Delaware, the state is fiercely opposed to building a liquid natural gas delivery pier, like the facility in Calvert County, in the Delaware River. The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission is considering British Petroleum's proposal to operate a $500 million LNG import and distribution terminal opposite Claymont. But state environmental officials insist that even with design changes, the plan would violate a longstanding ban on new industrial plants along the Delaware...

Our Creature Feature from China might be called the Giant Panda Internet Cafe. That's our read on a report that the Chinese have installed broadband at the Wolong Giant Panda Nature Reserve, where 76 pandas reside.

These creatures are special indeed, but you probably won't see them online while sipping lattes. The bears will, however, enjoy new protections as researchers use digital technology to process real-time data about their well-being and monitor their movements throughout the 770-square-mile reserve. Broadband will "help us manage the living environment of giant pandas in a more efficient manner," reserve director Zhang Weimin told Reuters.

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