Katherine Hafner, The Virginian-Pilot

Katherine Hafner

The Virginian-Pilot

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Recent:
  • The Virginian-Pilot
Past:
  • Orlando Sentinel

Recent articles by Katherine:

Litter skyrocketed during the pandemic, so Norfolk’s turning to data science to tackle the problem

Data science company Litterati plans to hire four teams of researchers to systematically survey litter at 300 locations across Norfolk's seven wards. → Read More

New project along Hague in Norfolk with wetlands and walking path is a decade in the making

The Hague is a U-shaped section of Smith’s Creek that feeds into the Elizabeth River, which in turn feeds the Chesapeake Bay. Norfolk's new project is meant to intercept stormwater that runs off into the waterway. → Read More

A guide to the language we use about the environment in Hampton Roads

Learn what local environmental leaders mean when they use terms such as carbon sequestration, best management practices and impervious land cover. → Read More

Crab from a lab? Right along Hampton’s waterfront, researchers are working on the future of lab-grown meat

The Virginia Tech team, working out of an agricultural extension center in Hampton is figuring out the best way to program cells to mimic the look, feel and flavor of the meat we eat. → Read More

Republican Glenn Davis keeps 84th district seat in Virginia Beach

Davis, 47, a former City Council member, has had the seat in the House of Delegates since 2014. It’s been held by Republicans since the early 1990s, including by former Gov. Bob McDonnell. → Read More

Chesapeake Bay water quality declined in recent years, group says, while pollution reduction deadline nears

The recent decline is linked to unusually wet weather in 2018 and 2019, the Chesapeake Bay Program said. More rain can wash pollution into the bay, spurring algae growth and low-oxygen “dead zones” that can suffocate life. → Read More

Norfolk to require trees on all developments, part of effort to expand canopy — and absorb water

Norfolk planning director George Homewood said the goals are to keep as many trees as possible, replace ones that can’t be saved and look for areas of the city where planting them can have the most impact, including formerly redlined areas. → Read More

Virginia’s first offshore wind turbines have become a haven for marine life

Mussels, fish, algae and more are “hanging out and feeding on what’s growing on the turbines,” said Mitchell Jabs, Dominion Energy environmental specialist. → Read More

How future hurricanes could affect the Chesapeake Bay region, according to new research

“People talk about what climate change is going to do to storm frequency and intensity,” said Margaret Walls, a co-author of the study. “But what we’re showing is it doesn’t matter if (storms) get worse. They’re going to have worse impacts because of sea level rise.” → Read More

Virginia gave millions to flood resilience projects in Hampton Roads. Here’s what they’ll do.

Local projects that received grants this week include a $3 million wetland restoration effort along the Elizabeth River's eastern branch, transforming a Hampton site into a "resilience park," doing 3D modeling of Norfolk waterways and more. → Read More

Chesapeake Bay Program vows to fight climate change more aggressively

The commitment on climate action “is critically important and it’s long overdue,” Gov. Ralph Northam said at a signing ceremony at the Brock Environmental Center in Virginia Beach, the wetlands of Pleasant House Point stretching behind him. → Read More

Habitat for Humanity’s executive director is living on a Norfolk roof for 7 days. Here’s why.

Frank Hruska, executive director of Habitat for Humanity South Hampton Roads, is trying to raise a quarter-million dollars needed in roof renovations to accommodate solar technology. → Read More

Virginia’s best fall colors are likely to peak around Oct. 23, tree expert says

“Things are looking pretty good for a good year,” said John Seiler, a tree physiology specialist at Virginia Tech. → Read More

Virginia lawmakers push federal government to take more Fort Monroe land for national monument

The three Democrats — Rep. Elaine Luria and Sens. Mark Warner and Tim Kaine — say they want to protect the land on Fort Monroe for future generations and unify it with the rest of the fort’s eastern coastline already under the National Park Service. → Read More

School gardens, rain barrels and more: Hampton Roads teachers can get $500 for environmental projects

The “mini grants” from AskHRGreen.org offer up to $500 for projects tied to environmental topics including water conservation, recycling, litter prevention and native plants. → Read More

Black women are dying of breast cancer in Hampton Roads at staggering rates, prompting national attention

Rates of breast cancer in the region overall are higher than the state and national averages. But the gaps across racial lines are stark. Suffolk and Chesapeake had the highest discrepancies between Black and white women, according to a new report. → Read More

Virginia Beach mother helped create state’s first Overdose Awareness Day after losing son to opioid addiction

Tuesday is “an opportunity for all Virginians to stand beside those who have lost loved ones to an overdose and those who have a substance use disorder and are diligently working toward recovery,” Gov. Ralph Northam said in his proclamation for the inaugural Overdose Awareness Day. → Read More

Nearly 100 paddleboarders are traveling the entire Chesapeake Bay to help oyster recovery

Bay Paddle, a fundraiser relay race of sorts across the bay, launches Friday from Maryland and ends in the Atlantic just off the Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel on Sept. 3. → Read More

A vaccine against opioid addiction? Researchers at Virginia Tech are working on it.

A team at Virginia Tech hopes that by training the body to form antibodies against opioids, a shot could not only help people already hooked on the drugs but also prevent others from becoming addicted in the first place. → Read More

What will climate change do to Hampton Roads? 10 takeaways from new state report

Climate change “will have an increasingly disruptive effect on people living in Virginia’s coastal areas,” write the authors, who were ordered by the General Assembly last year to study the far-reaching effects of climate change. → Read More