The Allegheny Front
Summary: Each week, The Allegheny Front, an award-winning public radio program hosted by Matthew Craig, explores environmental issues and the natural history of Western Pennsylvania and beyond with interviews, feature stories and commentary.
Susan Scott Peterson had been living in Pittsburgh for just a few weeks when she smelled it for the first time. The air was a little thick, a little hazy—and it smelled like a ripe porta-potty. It didn’t take long to figure out it industrial air pollution. This is a story about the air we breathe, the risks we live with, and what it means to become a citizen of a place. It is adapted from an episode produced for Outside/In, a podcast by New Hampshire Public Radio.
The Allegheny Front and Environmental Health News investigated the mental health impacts of air and water pollution and climate change in western Pennsylvania. We found alarming evidence that residents throughout the region are likely suffering changes to their brains due to pollution in the surrounding environment. Reporting also uncovered the growing gap in mental health care as more people are traumatized by worsening climate change. More at https://www.alleghenyfront.org/mentalhealth
A new collaboration hopes to get people in Central Pennsylvania talking about climate change. We also examine the mental health struggles of farmers, and how an aging farming population in Pennsylvania means that the future of small family farming is changing.
Some people along the coast of New Jersey are saying no to offshore wind power. They worry about preserving the character and natural beauty of NJ beaches. We talk with the new leader of a clean air watchdog group in Pittsburgh. A professor wants to create a corridor throughout the Appalachians for elk. Our reporter escapes to the Laurel Highlands Hiking Trail.
Climate change is making it harder to hunt and fish. An advocacy group wants hunters and anglers to speak out. Taking down dams to create a free-flowing Mahoning River is not without controversy. Consumer choices are hard when you want to do good for the environment. One expert says don't sweat the small stuff.
Metalico, a metal recycler on Neville Island in Allegheny County, is now the target of EPA. It has been a nuisance to the community for years. Pittsburgh has a new light pollution ordinance. An astronomer advocates for dark skies. Criminal charges against a pipeline company do little to spark action in the Pa. legislature.
Researchers say too many deer and invasive plants are threatening the long-term survival of Pa.'s forests. A filmmaker of a new documentary about a massive effort to clean up a Western Pa. river says it's a hopeful story. The author of a book about individual liberty and private property rights argues that signing a gas lease shouldn't be one of those rights.
More wind turbines in the ocean mean more renewable energy on the grid. But what's the impact on fisheries? Pennsylvania's attorney general files criminal charges for the Mariner East pipeline. A new group is encouraging people to retire their lawnmowers and leafblowers and plant native species.
Transmission lines are key to more renewable energy, but some don't want them on their land. Students take to the streets for a climate strike. We get reaction to Pa.'s new Climate Action Plan. Volunteers clean up tons of trash along Pittsburgh's hillsides.
Pennsylvania has a new climate action plan. Regenerative farming is part of the climate solution as is a program to help local governments. Pennsylvania has pledged to regulate toxic PFAS chemicals in drinking water. What's taking so long? New Allegheny County air regs, and a study on the health benefits of joining a regional cap-and-trade program.
Protecting a pristine glacial lake from invasive species takes painstaking work. Author Doug Tallamy wants people to plant their yards with native species that feed the ecosystem. Pittsburgh opens two new parks, one with a public art installation that makes visible the history of water and flooding. A climate change training for community and business leaders.
Preserving the sacred ground at the Flight 93 National Memorial and treating the water pollution that plagued the site long before the plane crashed there on 9/11. A look back as a naturalist searched for reassurance in nature on September 12. We dig into the recent decision by a federal judge to throw out a Trump rule that stripped protections for many streams and wetlands.
What some labor unions want in a clean energy economy. We'll also talk to the engineer the president has tasked with making sure fossil fuel communities aren't left behind. Pa. is a step closer to putting a price on carbon. Plus, a little clover makes a big move off the Endangered Species list. News about fracking waste and the Clean Water Act.
The wonder and peril of bird migration with author Scott Weidensaul. Teaching computer models to identify birdsong to aid in conservation. The Department of Energy listens to community perspectives on the ethane and petrochemical industries. News about Shell's Falcon pipeline and climate education in Pa. schools.
A vaccine blitz for raccoons to stop rabies from marching westward. How to shop smart for electricity. A short documentary features little kids tackling a big environmental problem... litter. News about a new plan for Pa.'s state parks to address climate change, a fine for spills from the Mariner East, and a roadblock for a new coal mine in Allegheny County.