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Vince Winkel

A crowd gathered on 3rd Street at City Hall in Wilmington Saturday morning, to rally against GenX in the water and against Chemours. It came the last day that environmental activist Erin Brockovich and her film crew were in town. Brockovich missed this last scheduled event, where she was to speak, however others spoke loud and clear about this water crisis.

Nancy Beach / Wikimedia Commons

On Thursday’s CoastLine, Confederate history in Wilmington shows up in statues, street names, and museums.  Three UNCW Professors join us for a look at how these artifacts came to be – and where they belong…

GUEST INFO: 

epSos.de / Wikimedia Commons

On Wednesday’s CoastLine, we’ll follow the trail of everyday plastics from use to disposal to the ocean.  Could that plastic fork you used for lunch wind up in the belly of a dolphin or an albatross? It’s an exploration of ocean plastic.

This episode originally aired June 16, 2016.

GUESTS: 

Pixabay

13 Reasons Why – first a book, then a Netflix series, tells the story of Hannah Baker, a high school student who dies by suicide.  But before she carries it out, she creates old-school cassette tapes – each one telling the story of a particular person who hurt her which add up to the 13 reasons why she decided to die.  They’re various injuries, small and large, including her rape by a classmate.   

Skeeze / Pixabay

With the region’s latest heat wave and the tropical soup that’s spawned Hurricane Gert and three other potential systems in the North Atlantic, it’s hard to think about getting outside and planting anything that isn’t zoned for a humid, subtropical climate. 

But fall will be here before you know it, and in southeastern North Carolina and northeastern South Carolina, fall is a great time to plant.  We find out why on this edition of CoastLine from our experts, and we hear about the latest garden trends, but most importantly, we get your gardening questions answered.

Romeo Durscher - NASA / Flickr

It is indeed dark during the day as a total solar eclipse makes its way from Oregon to South Carolina. Eleven states are in the path of total darkness. Follow the astronomical phenomenon's journey across America along with NPR journalists and others experiencing the eclipse. 

This blog will go live Monday, August 21, at 10am ET and will run until approximately 3pm ET. (The eclipse itself is slated to begin in the U.S. around 1:16pm ET and end about 2:48pm ET.)

See below for the live blog coverage.

Vince Winkel / WHQR

Environmental activist Erin Brockovich is in town this week. She’s here to talk about GenX, and has brought a film crew of 15 with her to document her efforts. Last night, she spoke at UNCW’s Lumina Theater.  The forum was short on science, and long on cheerleading.

Tonight, UNCW’s Lumina Theater will play host to a panel discussion on GenX and the other unregulated chemical compounds in the area water supply. Speakers include Erin Brockovich and her colleague Robert Bowcock. Other panelists who had been slated for the event decided in the last few days not to participate.  

So long, and thanks for all the fish

Aug 15, 2017
Haskell Rhett

Today, August 15th, is my last official day employed by WHQR, though my last working day at the office was in late July (I'm on vacation right now). There are many things I will miss about WHQR, especially the people, but I am looking forward to retirement.

Vince Winkel / WHQR

140 parts per trillion. That’s the number used by North Carolina’s Department of Health and Human Services, in regards to the health goal for GenX in the water supply. That goal represents the concentration of GenX at which no adverse non-cancer health effects would be anticipated. 

Vince Winkel / WHQR

There’s a new plan in the works for the land along Battleship Road, across the river from downtown Wilmington. It’s from the same developers who had pitched a plan to build fifteen large houses there. 

Hannes Grobe / Wikimedia Commons

President Donald Trump signed an executive order in late April to expand energy exploration drilling in the Arctic and Atlantic Oceans.  The order puts in place a new five-year program, 2019-2024, that will supersede the earlier one – essentially reversing the Obama Administration’s decision to remove the mid-Atlantic region from consideration for offshore drilling. 

What’s different about this issue compared to so many other national points of debate – is that support or opposition doesn’t necessarily fall along predictable party lines. 

There are crooks, criminals, and hucksters out there trying to get your money through investment scams, retail fraud, identity theft, and they’ve been there since commerce began.  But are there degrees of hucksterism?  What’s the line between an enthusiastic entrepreneur with a brilliant, albeit untested idea versus a good, old-fashioned snake oil salesman who doesn’t really care if what’s in the bottle he’s selling doesn’t work?  His goal:  to make the sale and move on. 

Vince Winkel / WHQR

Congressman David Rouzer met with New Hanover County and Wilmington city officials today, to discuss issues that impact the area and the country. At the top of the list for the Republican from North Carolina’s 7th District is opioid addiction. 

Oxford University Press

If you’ve ever marveled at the artistry of Citizen Kane or sneered at the 1990s cult film Starship Troopers  or decided that Raging Bull is the greatest film of all time, then today’s discussion is for you.  We explore why films give us pleasure.

Dram Tree Shakespeare

There’s an old saying about Shakespeare plays:  they’re a lot more fun to act in than they are to watch. 

However, there are efforts in town that are shaking apart that old idea and building a whole new paying audience for Shakespeare.  We’re seeing this most notably with Dram Tree Shakespeare and Alchemical Theatre, whose productions are associated with the Theater Department at the University of North Carolina Wilmington.

Guests: 

NCCF

The latest test results are in from the state’s Department of Environmental Quality. On Wednesday the DEQ reported that concentrations of GenX in finished drinking water from the Cape Fear River continue to be below the state’s public health goal. 

GenX and the water has been burned into Wilmington’s consciousness for almost two months now. State and local agencies continue to test and analyze the region’s water supply. The Environmental Working Group, a Washington, D.C.–based non-profit, non-partisan organization focused on health and the environment, just released a drinking water database. It includes data from the Cape Fear region.

On July 2, 1961, Ernest Hemingway rose quietly, so as not to disturb his wife.  He put on his bathrobe and slippers, walked down to the basement of his Idaho home, and unlocked his gun case.  He climbed the steps to his foyer, placed his favorite shotgun to the roof of his mouth, and blew the top of his head off.

Courtesy Martha Peterson

It was 1975 when Martha Peterson’s plane landed in Moscow and launched her assignment as an American case officer for the CIA inside Russia. 

The state of North Carolina is now committing resources to support the Cape Fear Region in the challenge of GenX, and toxic discharges into the river. Governor Roy Cooper detailed that commitment during his Monday visit. He also mentioned a criminal investigation into Chemours, the company responsible for the chemicals in the water supply. However, it is not an investigation yet.

Brett Cottrell, New Hanover County

Governor Roy Cooper says Chemours will have to turn off the faucet. The DuPont spin-off will not get a permit to discharge GenX into the Cape Fear River. Cooper made that vow at a meeting yesterday in Wilmington with local and state officials.

Governor Roy Cooper says Chemours will not get a permit to discharge GenX into the Cape Fear River.  That promise came at a meeting this morning in Wilmington with local and state officials.  Leaders from the area have been pressing for state help since the Star News first reported on the compromised drinking water supply last month.

Governor Roy Cooper will be in Wilmington Monday, to discuss how the state can help with the GenX situation. It’s been almost seven weeks since the public first learned about the discharge of GenX and other chemical compounds by the Chemours company, in the Cape Fear River.  

Klaus Toxic via Wikimedia Commons

Five women hanged during the Salem witch trials in Massachusetts were memorialized Wednesday, July 19th on the 325th anniversary of their deaths.  Sarah Good, Elizabeth Howe, Susannah Martin, Sarah Wildes, and Rebecca Nurse might sound like familiar names -- either from history class or the Arthur Miller play, The Crucible, which was based on the Salem Witch Trials.  Twenty people were killed during that 17th century witch hunt. 

White House Photograph Courtesy Gerald R. Ford Library.

North Carolina state legislators have passed House Bill 527 – also known as an Act to Restore and Preserve Free Speech on the Campuses of the Constituent Institutions of the University of North Carolina -- almost exactly along partisan lines.  Sponsored by North Carolina State Representative Chris Millis, a Republican from Pender County, the bill now sits on Governor Roy Cooper’s desk.

WHQR, StarNews, and WWAY sponsored a public forum at Odell Williamson Auditorium to explore persistent questions about the fluorochemical load in the Cape Fear River -- which is much of southeastern North Carolina's drinnking water supply.

Vince Winkel / WHQR

This week Gov. Roy Cooper told the EPA to get to work. In a letter to EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt, Gov. Cooper asks the EPA to move quickly to finalize its health assessment and set a limit for the unregulated chemical GenX. Meanwhile the EPA earmarked more than $3 million for the NC DEQ to enforce the requirements of the Safe Drinking Water Act. This all happened as county and city officials held a press conference on the topic of GenX.  

Vince Winkel / WHQR

State officials are releasing the first results of water quality samples and an updated preliminary health assessment for concentrations of the unregulated compound GenX in finished, or treated, drinking water. Samples were analyzed at the U.S. EPA lab in Research Triangle Park, and at Test America, a lab in Colorado under contract to Chemours. The latest results mirror those from the Cape Fear Public Utility Authority, with levels in the 68 to 125 parts per trillion range. Is that cause for celebration? Not so fast.

WHQR invites you to a public forum on the GenX water issue Wednesday night, July 19th from 7 - 9 PM at Odell Williamson Auditorium.  The StarNews, WWAY, and HQR News will pose your questions to a panel of experts. You can also listen live, on 91.3 FM, WHQR. 

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