News

Last Day For Video Sweepstakes

Nov 30, 2010
sign on window
Laura Leslie

Today is the last day that video sweepstakes parlors will be legally allowed to operate in North Carolina.  But a judge’s ruling could open the door to other games.

Clinton In Greensboro

Nov 30, 2010
Clinton
Bryan Series

Former President Bill Clinton will speak in Greensboro tonight. He is appearing as part of Guilford College's Bryan Lecture Series.

Instant Runoff Count Underway

Nov 29, 2010

Elections officials around the state have started the second phase of vote counting in a Court of Appeals race.

One of this year’s Court of Appeals races is the first statewide contest in the US to use instant runoff voting.  In the general election, voters chose a first, second, and third choice from a field of 13 candidates.   Cressie Thigpen and Doug McCullough were the top two winners as first choice. 

Starting today, elections officials are sorting through ballots on which the first choice was someone else.  Deputy state Elections Director Johnnie McLean:

Chimney Rock Park Plans Posted

Nov 29, 2010

The public gets its first look today at the draft master plans for the new Chimney Rock State Park.  The landmark near Asheville has been one of western North Carolina’s top attractions for decades.  In 2007, its private owners sold it to the state to become part of a large new state park at Hickory Nut Gorge. 

weather map
NOAA

 

Today marks the start of the official “Winter Weather Preparedness Week.” State emergency officials will be educating the public on ways to be prepared in the event of nasty weather. Jeff Orrock is with the National Weather Service in Raleigh. He says this year’s forecast of an intensified La Nina system means there’s a good chance we’ll see a warmer, drier winter than last year’s:

USDA Offers Help For Longleaf Pine

Nov 26, 2010
Longleaf Pine stand, Forest, Trees,
USFWS/Jack Culpepper

The federal government is making $800,000 available to North Carolinians trying to conserve the official state tree.  Landowners who plant or manage stands of longleaf pine can apply now for cost-sharing help from the U-S Department of Agriculture.   Longleaf forest used to cover some nine million acres of the southeastern US. But development and logging have cut it back to less than a million acres today. 

Black Friday Lures Reluctant Shoppers

Nov 26, 2010

North Carolina shoppers swarmed shopping centers early this morning to take advantage of Black Friday sales.  No official numbers are available yet, but anecdotal reports say the lines were a little longer than they were last year.  Deep discounts on toys and electronics brought out Black Friday regulars, as well as some first-timers like Cindy Ratkovich. She doesn't usually take part in the early-morning Black Friday madness:

This long holiday shopping weekend is expected to out pace last year. And that includes online shopping.  Scot Wingo likes to track what is called – Cyber Monday – how much money online shoppers spend during the holiday weekend.  Wingo is C-E-O of Channel Advisor. The Morrisville-based company works with over three-thousand online retailers on how to be more efficient and make more money.

Wingo expects double digit online shopping growth:

Spaulding family seal
spauldingfamily.com

About 700 members of the Spaulding family will descend on Raleigh, NC next week for the clan’s 18th bi-annual reunion. The Spauldings can trace their roots to Duplin County where Benjamin Spaulding, a freed slave, married Edith Delphi Jacobs, a Lumbee Indian, in the early 19th century. The Spauldings have ties to the founding and success of dozens of the state’s institutions like North Carolina Mutual Life insurance company, Mechanics & Farmers Bank and Lincoln Hospital.

Waste 2 Watts To Power Medical Devices

Jul 2, 2010

In the past, global health work tended to be limited to doctors, nurses and other health care professionals. But engineering plays a role in health care around the world. From infrastructure projects, to supporting medical equipment, engineers are becoming an essential part of the global health landscape.

FHI worker Joseph Galloway detects holes in condoms by filling them with water.
Rose Hoban

When people think of global health, they might picture heroic doctors or selfless nurses. But many others work behind the scenes in global health, doing work that’s much less sexy, but equally essential.  Some of those people work here in the Triangle in a lab that tests life-preserving and life-saving products shipped around the world. Central to their work is testing condoms for safety and effectiveness.  In the next installment of our series, North Carolina Voices, Global Health Comes Home, Rose Hoban takes a visit to FHI’s product testing lab.

Cross-Cultural Research Provides Links to Durham

Jun 30, 2010
Study Coordinator Randy Rogers at Juneteenth Festival with research associates Kim Gibson and Alexandria Horne
Rose Hoban

Drug treatments for HIV have given new hope to patients with the virus. But the Holy Grail for researchers is finding a way to prevent HIV from being transmitted in the first place. Scientists are testing vaccines, drugs, gels that kill the virus – all without success. The only way to prevent HIV transmission – still – is to convince people to change their behavior. And that’s not easy.  A group of people in Durham are trying to find better methods for HIV prevention – and they’re using techniques refined by researchers working in other cultures.

Dr Phyllis Crain and one of the residence counselors talks with a boy outside a cottage at Crossnore.
Rose Hoban

When you say the word ‘orphanage’ what comes to mind for many people, are gloomy places of abuse and neglect, where kids are warehoused after losing family. For years, the assumption has been that foster families provide better care for kids in need than any institution could. But new research from overseas is challenging those beliefs – findings that kids in orphanages can do as well or better as kids taken into families. Now, that research is being embraced in the U S. And it’s starting to influence the policy dialogue about what to do with kids who need care outside their homes. 

Taste Of Place

Jun 23, 2010

Certain places are known for their indigenous foods. Vidalia, Ga. grows sweet onions. The banks of the Indian River in Florida produce outstanding citrus fruits. In some cases, governments go as far as to designate these special places with geographical indications. But what makes some geographical indications associated with certain foods and drink profitable for the farmers and producers in that area? N.C.

Chaka Khan! Chaka Khan! It’s a name that just rolls off your tongue.  The famous R & B and “funk” superstar has a voice that has mesmerized fans for decades with its range and flexibility.  And who can forget the feathers and the hair!   Chaka Khan takes the stage in Durham this weekend.

Eric Hodge hosts a one-hour digest of the Energy Series stories that aired April 12-23, 2010 .

App State Profesor Dennis Scanlin and wind turbine
Dennis Scanlin

North Carolina could get most of the energy it needs as a state from renewable sources including solar and wind. That's according to a report published earlier this year by the Institute for Energy and Environmental Research. But when it comes to producing wind energy that goes back into the grid, North Carolina is behind other states. In fact, there is only one utility-grade wind turbine in all of North Carolina. Jessica Jones reports for our series, North Carolina Voices:  Tomorrow's Energy.

A solar panel, renewable energy
NCSU/CSE

Over the last three years, North Carolina has seen exponential growth in the use of solar power- from a few panels on homeowners' roofs to heat hot water to large installations that produce energy and send it right back into the grid. Small business owners working in the industry believe what they're doing is good for the state and for the environment. But right now, their prospects are limited. Jessica Jones reports for our series North Carolina Voices: Tomorrow's Energy.

Consert CEO Jack Roberts
Jack Roberts

New businesses to help save the planet are popping up everyday.  As a result, your ability to do environmental good may be closer to your finger tips than you think.  Already, there are pockets of households and businesses in North Carolina that are able to control their heaters and air conditioners online or from their smart phones.  They're living on a Smart Grid - that's becoming smarter and smarter every day.

As part of our series North Carolina Voices: Tomorrow's Energy, reporter Leoneda Inge has the story of one smart grid pilot project in Fayetteville.

Behind the Reporting: 'Tomorrow’s Energy'

Apr 20, 2010

If you’ve been tuned in to Morning Edition this past week or so, you’ve been hearing a series of reports about energy from WUNC’s reporters. The series, “North Carolina Voices: Tomorrow’s Energy,” addresses where North Carolinians currently get their power and where we’ll get it in the future. A lot of work goes into those six or seven-minute radio reports, which means a lot also gets left out. The melody of a coal-fired power plant and the sculptural beauty of a wind turbine are among the details of the reporting that didn’t make it on the air. On today’s show, we’ll talk with WUNC reporters Dave DeWitt, Leoneda Inge, Jessica Jones and Laura Leslie about what they took away from their reporting and what else is left to say about powering North Carolina’s future.

Durham Sustainability Manager Tobin Freid
Tobin Freid

North Carolina has topped many lists in the past few years.  It's one of the fastest growing states and ranks high for its business climate.  But in energy efficiency, NC is wading somewhere in the middle of the pack nationwide.

Universities like UNC Chapel Hill, Duke, and NC State are among the largest electricity users in the state. Some produce their own power, some buy their electricity from utility companies. And all have student bodies that are vocal in their anxiety over global warming.

As part of our series North Carolina Voices: Tomorrow’s Energy, Dave DeWitt looks at how campuses are transforming to meet their future energy challenges.

Tomorrow's Energy: Pricing Power

Apr 15, 2010
Electric power meter, energy
Creative Commons/Jc3s5h

Most energy consumers know what they pay for electricity.  But very few of us know why we pay what we do.  Who decides what a kilowatt should cost?  And how does energy policy change that?  In this segment of our series North Carolina Voices: Tomorrow’s Energy, Laura Leslie reports on the complex process of pricing power.

Energy companies are predicting that the need for power will grow in North Carolina in the coming years. With climate legislation likely, they are turning back to an energy source that has been put on the back burner for several decades… nuclear.

In February, President Obama announced 8 billion dollars in loan guarantees for a Georgia utility company hoping to build new nuclear reactors. Progress Energy and Duke Energy both have plans to also build new nuclear to serve customers in North Carolina.

Drill in N.C., Baby, Drill

Apr 14, 2010

The White House unveiled a new and controversial plan to open up more than 160 million acres of ocean floor to drilling two weeks ago. Some states were omitted from the plan, but not North Carolina and its neighbors. We’ll find out why North Carolina politicians’ once vociferous opposition to offshore drilling seems to have fizzled. Plus, will the new drilling plan help land Obama a win on climate change legislation?

Voices of SNCC

Apr 13, 2010

The Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) was founded at Shaw University in April of 1960. Hoping to harness the enthusiasm and willpower of young people to end segregation, founders Ella Baker, James Lawson and Julian Bond organized protests and actions across the south. SNCC was vital to the impact of the 1963 March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom.

Tomorrow's Energy: Quitting Coal

Apr 13, 2010

Every time you hit the light switch, half the power you use is supplied by coal.  It's one of the cheapest and most dependable fuels we have.  It's also the dirtiest.  As regulators crack down on carbon and other emissions, some say we should stop using coal altogether.  Others aren't sure that's a realistic goal.  Laura Leslie reports for our series North Carolina Voices: Tomorrow's Energy.

Energy companies are predicting that the need for power will grow in North Carolina in the coming years. With climate legislation likely, they are turning back to an energy source that has been put on the back burner for several decade: nuclear.

In February, President Obama announced 8 billion dollars in loan guarantees for a Georgia utility company hoping to build new nuclear reactors. Progress Energy and Duke Energy both have plans to also build new nuclear to serve customers in North Carolina.

Don de Leaumont Plays Live In Studio

Nov 20, 2009
Don de Leaumont
dononthewb.com

Singer-songwriter Don de Leaumont’s music is part storytelling, part folksy warmth and insight. In October, he released his fifth solo album, called “Planes, Trains, Crickets and Central Air.” Now a resident of Atlanta, Georgia, Don returns to his longtime home of Chapel Hill for a gig at The Cave.

He joins host Frank Stasio in the studio to play some tunes and discuss how he broke his heavy metal addiction.

Picture of Russian Duo: Terry Boyarsky & Oleg Kruglyakov
russianduo.com

The balalaika is a traditional Russian instrument with three strings and a triangular body. Oleg Kruglyakov, a native of Omsk City, Siberia, has been playing the balalaika since he was seven years old. Now, he's devoted to educating other cultures about Russian folk music and testing the limits of his instrument by teaming up with pianist Terry Boyarsky.

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