Annie Ropeik | New Hampshire Public Radio

Annie Ropeik

Reporter: Climate, Energy, Environment, Seacoast

Annie Ropeik joined NHPR’s reporting team in 2017, following stints with public radio stations and collaborations across the country. She has reported everywhere from fishing boats, island villages and cargo terminals in Alaska, to cornfields, factories and Superfund sites in the Midwest.

Her work has appeared on NPR, the BBC and CNN, and earned recognition from PRNDI and multiple state press clubs.

Originally from Silver Spring, MD, Annie caught the public media bug during internships at NPR in Washington and WBUR in Boston. She studied classics at Boston University and enjoys a good PDF, the rule of threes and meeting other people’s dogs.

Ways to Connect

Robert Bukaty/AP / via Maine Public

The state of Maine is proposing the country’s first floating offshore wind farm in federal waters off Northern New England.

They hope to win a federal research lease to build a dozen turbines over about 16 square miles. The project will generate 120 megawatts of power.

That's enough to power at least 75,000 homes. It's bigger than many onshore wind projects in the region, but far smaller than the typical full-scale offshore development. 

Sean Hurley / NHPR

Permits are now available to harvest Christmas trees from the public lands of the White Mountain National Forest.

The permits are being sold online for the first time this year, and can also be picked up at forest offices in Campton, Conway and Gorham.

Annie Ropeik / NHPR

The U.S. Department of Agriculture has declared a drought disaster across all 10 New Hampshire counties.

It comes as the drought worsens again in the Southeastern area of the state, surrounding Strafford County.

An arsenic filter pitcher
Courtesy NHDES

The state has a new effort to protect low-income pregnant women and their babies from arsenic exposure using the WIC food assistance program.

The program will give out water pitchers with a three-year supply of arsenic filters to pregnant WIC users with unsafe arsenic levels in their home wells. It’s paid for by the state drinking and groundwater trust fund.

Supporters of President Trump protest at the New Hampshire State House, November 14, 2020
Dan Barrick / NHPR

As President Trump continues his refusal to concede to President-Elect Joe Biden or acknowledge his loss in his bid for re-election, his supporters protested the election results in several events this weekend in New Hampshire.

Annie Ropeik / NHPR

The Seacoast will get multiple king tides that top 10 feet in the next few days, and residents can take photos and videos of the tides' effects for an annual state contest that runs Saturday through Tuesday.

This kind of high tide tends to cause low-level flooding in the streets of ocean-facing towns like Hampton, and in the waterfront parks of Great Bay communities like Dover.

Dan Tuohy / NHPR

New Hampshire’s state legislature was the only one in the country where party control changed in last week's election.

Granite State Republicans kept the governor’s office and took control of the State House and Senate, which had both gone Democratic in 2018.

NHPR file

New Hampshire wants the Air Force to cover the cost of drinking water assistance for three homes near the former Pease Air Base with PFAS chemical contamination in their home wells.

It's the latest escalation in a dispute over whether the Air Force has to follow New Hampshire's new limits on PFAS in drinking water as part of ongoing groundwater cleanup around Pease. 

Sargent Corporation

Advocates are challenging the state’s approval of a plan to expand the North Country’s largest private landfill, in Bethlehem.

New Hampshire gave permission last month for Vermont-based Casella to add six acres to the facility, extending its life through 2026.

Mt Washington Observatory / Instagram

The Mount Washington Observatory says its resident cat, Marty, died this weekend after a sudden illness.

He was a black Maine Coon cat who spent twelve years at the summit facility, which has had cats as mousers and companions since it opened nearly a century ago.

Observatory operations manager Rebecca Scholand said the mountaintop was Marty’s full-time home, and he had the run of it, inside and outside.

WeatherReMarks/Twitter

Unseasonably warm temperatures the past few days have set records across New Hampshire and Maine, according to the National Weather Service.

Manchester saw record daily highs on Saturday and Sunday – getting close to 80 degrees. Concord also saw a record daily high on Sunday. Previous records were in the low 70s and 60s.

Get reporting about climate change in your inbox - sign up for our newsletter today.

US Army

People near Pease Tradeport may hear the Air National Guard's “Giant Voice” warning system as part of a training exercise in the next few days.

Pease officials say they’ll use the warning system mostly during daylight hours on Saturday and Sunday, and Friday to a lesser extent, as part of a local readiness exercise.

Get NHPR's reporting in your inbox - sign up for our newsletters today.

NHDES

October was New Hampshire's wettest month since April, but the state's drought is still extreme in and around Strafford County.

All of the rest of the state remains in moderate drought. At a virtual multi-agency meeting Thursday, state officials said there hasn’t been enough rain recently to alleviate this.

Congressman Chris Pappas
Allegra Boverman for NHPR

Democratic incumbent Rep. Chris Pappas has won a second term in Congress, besting Republican challenger Matt Mowers for New Hampshire’s First District seat by a 6 point margin with close to 90 percent of the vote tallied early Wednesday morning.

COAST bus
Via COAST on Twitter

The COAST bus service on the Seacoast will require passengers to wear face masks while aboard its vehicles starting next Monday.

The transit service says it's following guidance from the Centers for Disease Control as COVID cases increase in New Hampshire. Riders will be offered pre-wrapped disposable masks for the first couple of weeks of the rule.

COAST employees are also required to wear masks in most cases.

Some passengers are exempt from the rule under CDC advice. COAST officials are asking passengers not to bother other riders who may not be wearing a mask.

Eversource / Twitter

Update, 9:30 a.m. Tuesday: Utilities repaired all major outages overnight, leaving only about 150 across the state Tuesday morning. There are no weather advisories in effect for New Hampshire at this time. 

Original story, 4:30 p.m. Monday:

Gusty winds caused several thousand power outages across New Hampshire Monday, but utilities say they're prepared for any impacts to polling places on Election Day Tuesday.

Annie Ropeik / NHPR

A small group of young activists protested this weekend outside the Amazon distribution hub in Hooksett, calling for the company’s workers to get time off to vote Tuesday for the election.

It was part of similar protests taking place nationwide. Students who organized the Hooksett event have also worked with groups like 350NH and the New Hampshire Youth Movement.

Lesley University sophomore Alison Frisella spoke through a megaphone in front of a protest banner, as Amazon delivery drivers rolled past nearby big box stores. A few honked in support.

Jonathan W. Chipman / Dartmouth College

Researchers at Dartmouth College are studying ways that doctors can encourage more homeowners to test their private water wells for toxins such as arsenic.

New Hampshire has lots of natural arsenic in its groundwater, and is working toward halving its limit on arsenic in public water systems – joining New Jersey as the only states to differ from the default federal standard.

But as much as half of New Hampshire and the rest of Northern New England relies on unregulated private wells for drinking water. 

Gunstock Mountain via Twitter

A new state aid program has already gotten more than 60 requests for bottled water from people whose wells have run dry as a result of the drought, which has persisted in Southeastern New Hampshire despite recent rain and snow.

The dry conditions have improved in much of the state and region, but remain extreme in much of Rockingham and Strafford Counties and surrounding areas, as well as in southern Maine and from Cape Cod into Rhode Island.

Are you noticing any issues with your home's water supply? Send us an email with your story.

David Murray / via NHDES

Democrats describe themselves as the only party taking the threat of climate change seriously. And President Trump’s continued denial of climate science and rollbacks of environmental protections haven’t made it easy for Republicans to change that.

But some New Hampshire conservatives think their candidates could be doing more to run – and win – on climate change.


UNH Agricultural Experiment Station

Certain New England tree species might not grow as fast after severe drought years like this one, according to new research from the University of New Hampshire.

The findings come from an ongoing study on plots of red oak and white pine trees – both key timber species – in Durham and the White Mountains.

Loon.org

New Hampshire is suing the giant agrochemical company Monsanto for allegedly knowingly causing water contamination with cancer-causing chemicals called PCBs, which have tainted fish and harmed loon populations across the state.

Annie Ropeik / NHPR

The state is offering emergency aid and bottled water for low-income homeowners whose drinking water wells are running dry due to the ongoing drought.

The state’s Drinking Water and Groundwater Trust Fund is putting up $1.5 million for the relief program, which is the first of its kind in any drought. 

Low-income homeowners whose private wells have run dry can request temporary free deliveries of bottled water for drinking and cooking.

Shawn St. Hilaire / Courtesy

New Hampshire’s dry conditions are improving after recent rain, but the southeastern part of the state is still in extreme drought. 

The latest update from the National Drought Monitor shows two areas of extreme drought left all across New England. One covers parts of southern Maine across the upper Seacoast toward I-93. The other spans from Cape Cod into Rhode Island.

Annie Ropeik / NHPR file

Climate change policy marks one of the sharpest divides between incumbent Republican Gov. Chris Sununu and his Democratic challenger, Concord state Sen. Dan Feltes.  

NHPR’s Morning Edition host Rick Ganley spoke with reporter Annie Ropeik about how the candidates' differences on this issue put the state at a crossroads on climate action.


NH Forest Rangers / Twitter

The state has lifted its restrictions on smoking and campfires near public woodlands after recent wet weather.

The ban was a rare step taken in late September amid extreme drought conditions. Now, the state says it's going back to its normal permitting system for open burning.

Officials say a rainy spell and higher humidity have eased the risk of wildfires despite the ongoing drought.

Winter has arrived in the higher elevations of New Hampshire, and with it, cold weather rescues. A group of five hikers was rescued from a cold trail in the White Mountains National Forest Sunday night.

State conservation officers say the five hikers were all in their early 20s, from Massachusetts and Rhode Island. They were two days in to a planned three-day hike near Carter Dome, south of Gorham, when the temperature dropped.

NH Electric Co-op

Solar power in New Hampshire took a big step forward Monday, as the state Site Evaluation Committee unanimously approved a utility-scale solar project for the first time.

Annie Ropeik / NHPR file

A new federal water permit is out for a state fish hatchery in New Durham that's accused, in a federal lawsuit, of polluting waters that feed into Lake Winnipesaukee.

The long-awaited permit could prompt costly upgrades at the Powder Mill Fish Hatchery, the state’s largest, in the next several years.

Courtesy Robert Cooke

UPDATE: 9:45 p.m. Monday:

Police say a Maine man accused of firing a gun in a shopping center parking lot in New Hampshire had multiple stolen firearms and a significant quantity of ammunition.

Get updates from our newsroom in your inbox - sign up for NHPR's Rundown newsletter today.

Pages