Pfeffer News


Voters Asked to Decide on Space Aliens

Denver, CO

CPR –  Denver voters who make it all the way through their ballots may get a surprise this year.  They’re being asked to vote on something no American city has done before. You could say, it’s out of this world. Megan Verlee reports on initiative 300.

Click here to listen to the story.


Attack One Year Ago Transforms Soldier, Family

N3 – One year ago, seven Northwest soldiers and their interpreter were killed in a massive IED blast in Southern Afghanistan. It was the single deadliest incident during a brutal one-year deployment of the 5th Stryker Brigade. Austin Jenkins reports on what happened that day and how one year later this tragedy has transformed some of the people most affected by it.

Click here to listen to the story.


Is Hunting a Constitutional Right?

Hermatige, TN

WPLN – It’s not just deer season this that has hunters excited this fall. This election season sportsmen are being drawn to the polls by one of the quietest campaigns this year. Blake Farmer reports voters in four states, including Tennessee, will decide if hunting and fishing are just a privilege or more than that, a constitutional right.


A Setback for Sustainable Packaging

Charlotte, NC

WFAE – Sun Chips recently came out with a new, biodegradable bag, but consumers couldn’t get over the noise factor. With a different molecular makeup, the corn-based bag was loud and annoyed buyers so much that parent company Frito Lay trashed the bag after less than a year. But Scott Graf reports it may only be a small step backwards in the push towards sustainable packaging.

Click here to listen to the story.


Fertilizer Run Amok

Montgomery County, MD

WAMU – A decade’s worth of fertilizer has run amok in Lake Needwood, Montgomery County. Sometimes giving too much of a good thing… can be a bad thing. Sabri Ben-Achour reports on a spot where decades’ worth of fertilizer have turned the lake into a zone of pollution. He says efforts are being made to turn things around.

Click here to listen to the story.


Will the Volt be to Chevy what the Prius is to Toyota?

Rochester, MI

Michigan Radio – What do you get from an image-battered Detroit automaker whose prestige could largely ride on the launch of one revolutionary car — one that’s likely to lose money for years to come? You get the much ballyhooed Chevy Volt. Tracy Samilton reports there are high expectations for this car, which could push the Prius out of its spot as America’s pre-eminent green vehicle.

Click here to listen to the story on the linked web page.


Public Schools look Overseas to Bring in Dollars, Diversity

Camden Hills, ME

MPBN – More and more public schools are beginning to recruit students from abroad; they want to bring more diversity — and by charging tuition, more money to their classrooms. And where else to focus recruitment efforts but on the world’s fastest-growing economy: China. Josie Huang reports.

Click here to listen to the story.

Crime Fighting is in the Details

Chicago, IL

WBEZ – Police have been installing cameras and trimming trees in an effort to cut crime in Chicago. Rob Wildeboer visits Englewood on Chicago’s South Side to meet Bow Legged Lou to talk about the impact these law enforcement measures are having on the community.

Click here to listen to the story.


Is Fall Color Tourism Recession Proof?

Ann Arbor, MI

Chicago, IL

Cleveland, OH

Changing Gears:
Nature’s first green is gold,
Her hardest hue to hold.
Her early leaf’s a flower;
But only so an hour.
Then leaf subsides to leaf.
So Eden sank to grief,
So dawn goes down to day.
Nothing gold can stay.
Robert Frost, 1923

Niala Boodhoo reports on whether or not the greens and golds of autumn are still attracting tourists through the economic downturn.

Click here to listen to the story on the linked web page.


The Hoover Dam Turns 75

Boulder City, NV

KNAU – This year the Hoover Dam is celebrating two milestones – the 75th anniversary of the dam’s completion and the opening of a new highway bypass. The dam supplies water and power to the burgeoning populations of the southwest. Laurel Morales marks the occasion with a look back.

Click here to listen to the story on the linked web page.


Books, by the Millions, for Africa

St. Paul, MN

MPR — Access to books in the U.S. is easy, but in some parts of the world they are still a rarity. A St. Paul-based organization is trying to meet demand by sending millions of books, most of them school textbooks, to Africa. Euan Kerr reports.


New Apple Prompts Fruit Suit

Traverse City, MI

IPR – Some people in northern Michigan are getting a taste of a highly touted new apple variety. Producers are hoping the SweeTango is going to be the next big thing to hit the market, and they’ve set up an exclusive licensing agreement to protect the quality of the fruit. But Bob Allen reports some growers say they’re being cut out of the deal and are filing suit.

Click here to listen to the story.


Bring Your Own Restaurant (BYOR)

Peter Palombella
Holyoke, MA

WFCR – In some restaurants it can take months to get a reservation. But in Holyoke at BYOR, a do-it-yourself dining experience, there are some very good eats, and just by showing up diners may end up rebuilding a city, meal by meal. Jill Kaufman reports.

Click here to listen to the story on the linked web page.


Gas Industry Reshapes a Region

Bradford County, PA

Wayne County, PA

WHYY – Natural gas has been trapped deep below the surface of Pennsylvania for eons. But only in the past two years has the industry begun in earnest to tap the rich gas reserves of the Marcellus Shale — a layer of rock thousands of feet down that runs from New York to West Virginia. Gas companies sunk nine hundred wells into the Pennsylvania Marcellus this year.  Drilling has created boom towns in some rural places more accustomed to cows than truck traffic. But in other cases push back from residents and regulatory groups has stalled drilling.  

Two counties that have responded to the industry in drastically different ways. Kerry Grens and Susan Phillips report.

Click here to listen to Part 1 of the story on the linked web page.

With this new industry in play, residents have a lot of questions. The most frequently asked: what will be the impact on their water? Kerry Grens searches for the answer.

Click here to listen to Part 2 of the story on the linked web page.

Pennsylvania’s natural gas rush has environmentalists and residents worried about contaminated drinking water wells, increased truck traffic, exploding well heads and potentially toxic spills. But the counterpoint all along has been jobs, jobs, jobs. Susan Phillips reports.

Click here to listen to Part 3 of the story on the linked web page.

Thousands of people have flooded rural areas to work for drilling companies — but with more people comes greater need for public services, and an economic burden on some communities. Kerry Grens explores how one county is coping with the gas rush.

Click here to listen Part 4 of the story on the linked web page. 

Who watches over industry? Susan Phillips reports on how regulators are struggling with policing the gas rush.

Click here to listen to Part 5 of the story to the linked web page.