Amid rising waters, Smith Island puts faith in jetties, God

Only on Smith Island would someone get choked up about a jetty, a constructed wall of stones that functions like a bulwark against waves and water currents. Since 2015, federal, state and local sources have invested about $18.3 million in three separate projects on and around Smith Island, adding about two miles of reconstructed shoreline, several acres of newly planted salt marshes and hundreds of feet of jetties to preserve the island that is slipping away into the Chesapeake Bay.

Opinion: The death penalty should be revived

All sides in the debate over capital punishment claim to “know,” as one of my correspondents claimed, that death penalty is or is not a deterrent.  For it to be a deterrent for capital crime, murderers would have to think that they might be caught and that the venue in which they are caught will effect the ultimate punishment.  Further, they need to be convinced that such a penalty is not infinitely delayable.  In states that it takes a decade or more from conviction to execution and/or those in which capital punishment is rare to nonexistent, there can be no deterrent from the death penalty.

Once forgotten Anacostia River gets its first passing grade

Decades of work to improve the health of the Anacostia River are beginning to pay off, according to a report released Wednesday by the Anacostia Watershed Society. The river earned a “D-minus” on its annual report card, its first passing grade in the decade since the nonprofit began issuing report cards for the waterway that runs through Maryland and the District of Columbia into the Potomac River.

Environmentalists, watermen forge compromise on oysters

After two years of meeting behind closed doors, some of the people who’ve been lobbing verbal grenades at each other over oyster restoration — watermen and environmentalists — have buried enough of their differences to agree on a wide-ranging set of recommendations for restoring oysters in a pair of Eastern Shore rivers while also aiding the industry that depends on harvesting them.

Can tiny crustaceans take a bite out of mosquito population?

April showers bring May flowers — and mosquitoes. This spring, a team of researchers with the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science is looking into whether the annual onslaught of those pesky blood suckers can be curbed by some tiny, shrimplike critters called copepods.

Maryland orders Exelon to shoulder Conowingo pollution reductions

After years of study and haggling over how to deal with the impact of Conowingo Dam on the Chesapeake Bay, the Hogan administration has ordered the hydropower facility’s operator to reduce nutrient pollution passing through the dam on its way down the Susquehanna River — or pay up to $172 million a year for someone else to do it.