Environment

Environment news

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 Environmental groups are gearing up for their annual "Greening the Statehouse" event this weekend at the University of Indianapolis, where they'll be learning about the EPA's new rules on coal ash storage.

The ash is a byproduct of coal-burning power plants, and it contains heavy metals such as mercury, cadmium and arsenic. It's often stored wet, in sludge ponds, and Indiana has more of them than any other state. 

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US Senator Joe Donnelly says the Environmental Protection Agency needs to collaborate with small businesses and the agricultural community before crafting new water regulations, legislation co-sponsored by the Hoosier Democrat failed to clear a procedural hurdle in the Senate Tuesday.

The EPA regulates navigable waterways under the Clean Water Act.  But the federal agency sought to broaden its regulatory reach by redefining what’s known as the Waters of the United States law to include smaller bodies of water, including streams, ponds, and drainage ditches. 

fensterbme / https://www.flickr.com/photos/fensterbme/

The public has until Saturday to weigh in on the strategic plan that will guide how the state’s forestlands are used over the next four years. It proposes higher user fees – and no rollback in logging on state-owned land. 

A little more than 10 years ago, the Division of Forestry sold about 3 million board feet each year from state-controlled land. But today, more than four times that much timber – 14 million board feet – leaves the forest each year.

Specially-Bred Purdue Bees Are Biting Back

Oct 28, 2015
Sarah Fentem / WBAA

  

For around a decade, beekeepers have seen around one-quarter to one-third of their colonies die every year. There are many potential causes for the die-off, but most scientists agree a parasitic mite is a major factor.

Purdue entomologist Greg Hunt says if a bee were human-sized, the mite would be about the size of a balled-up fist. Other scientists say the size is more comparable to a pancake.

But now, Purdue University scientists have bred special bees that are biting back.

Niels Paul / https://www.flickr.com/photos/nureinpaarfotos/4481300759

A group of Indiana climate scientists say the Pence administration doesn’t understand the science of climate change and needs to take action to address the issue.

Gabriel Filippelli is an IUPUI earth sciences professor and led a group of scientists in penning a letter to Governor Mike Pence.  Filippelli says the reality of climate change – and that humans are largely responsible for it – is no longer debated by the scientific community. 

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