Environment

Environment news

Hoosiers Push To Include Renewables In State Energy Plan

Sep 29, 2014
Gretchen Frazee / http://www.ipbs.org/

A group of about 75 Hoosiers gathered on the steps of the statehouse Saturday to launch a campaign aimed at convincing state leaders to make renewables a key part of the Indiana’s energy plan.

Gov. Mike Pence’s administration is in the middle of putting together a proposal for a new statewide energy plan.

Audubon Report Shows Climate Change Affecting Bird Migration

Sep 10, 2014
Bill Gracey / https://www.flickr.com/photos/9422878@N08/8438709330

A new Audubon Society report claims the combination of climate change and habitat destruction could put a large number of North American bird populations at risk sooner rather than later.

The report predicts that, of the 588 North American bird species observed in the study, 314 are at risk because of decreased climatic range due to rising temperatures over the next century. 

For example, a bird spending winters in Mississippi could soon spend winters in Missouri.  

Tim Evanson / https://www.flickr.com/photos/23165290

Hydraulic fracturing -- fracking, for short -- has been an economic boon to such states as North Dakota. It's produced never-before-seen wealth in the form of the gas and oil released from rocks deep underground.

A new report from Purdue agricultural economists Wally Tyner and Farzad Taheripour estimates the industry could create as much as $300 billion in wealth for Americans every year through at least 2035.

Jim Grey / https://www.flickr.com/photos/mobilene/476706221

Indiana will face serious challenges when it comes to water resources within the next 20 years if the state doesn’t begin correcting its issues now.  That’s according to the lead researcher in an Indiana Chamber of Commerce report released Friday.

Rob Slaven / https://www.flickr.com/photos/robslaven/8164380227

A report out Thursday claims Indiana is one of the worst water polluters in the nation.

The analysis from the group Environment America shows Indiana dumped more than 17-million pounds of pollutants into its waterways in 2012 – more tonnage than any other state.

Alan Berning / https://www.flickr.com/photos/14617207@N00/2621375759

Governor Mike Pence says he will use everything at his disposal to oppose new proposed federal regulations seeking to reduce carbon emissions from coal-fired power plants. 

President Obama announced Monday the Environmental Protection Agency’s proposed regulations seek to reduce carbon emissions 30-percent by the year 2030. 

The Atmospheric Radiation Measurement Climate Research Facility / https://www.flickr.com/photos/armgov/4772756538

Central Indiana’s rapid temperature shift this week has produced the possibility for a rare weather condition: the cold air funnel.

Mike Baldwin, a meteorology professor in Purdue University’s Department of Earth, Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences, says it’s a type of weak tornado.

“During the day when the sun comes out, even a little bit of sunshine will warm up the surface and the low-level air enough for that air to become unstable,” Baldwin says.

Harsh Winter Sapping State's Wine Grape Crops

May 14, 2014
Raul Lieberwirth / Flickr / https://www.flickr.com/photos/lanier67/216341826/

Indiana Vineyards are losing as much as 75-percent of their grape yields this year because of last winter's deep freeze.

Winemakers like David Simmons, co-owner of Simmons Winery near Columbus, knew they were going to take a hit, but are just now discovering exactly how much they’ve lost as their grape vines begin to bud.

"It's been a very difficult winter, we've had a lot of bud damage on the vines," Simmons says.

Peregrine falcon no longer on IN's watchlist

Oct 15, 2013
Indiana Department of Natural Resources

Indiana has taken the peregrine falcon off the state endangered species list. The birds were removed from the federal endangered species list in 1999.

Habitat loss and pesticide use almost wiped out the peregrine falcon population in the 1960s. There weren’t any birds east of the Mississippi River by 1965. Indiana wildlife officials began trying to reintroduce the bird in the early 1990s.

Now those conservation efforts are paying off. The Indiana Department of Natural Resources removed the falcon from the state endangered species list this month.

Work will begin soon on a slum and blight spot in downtown Lafayette. The city and the Wabash River Enhancement Corporation (WREC) are moving forward with clean-up of the property once owned by Midwest Rentals. The 2.3 acre site sits along the river and is bounded by South Street, railroad tracks and Sycamore Street.

The Hoosier Environmental Council wants to help businesses reduce their energy costs. The group is hosting a workshop that also aims at green job creation.

Policy advisor Kris Wheeler hopes the online event gives business owners new resources to improve their operations. She says buildings consume about 40% of the energy we use, so finding efficiencies will save money.

“Lighting is about 30% of where your energy goes, so just using energy-efficient lighting can have a significant impact, or the business owner can do a top-to-bottom, full building retrofit.”

Downtown Lafayette "blight" to be cleaned up

Jun 12, 2013
Google Maps

A former industrial site in downtown Lafayette should be cleaned up later this summer. The 2.3 acres are just south of South Street along the river.

It was officially designated a slum and blight spot by the city council last year.

Wabash River Enhancement Corporation (WREC) executive director Stan Lambert says the organization bought the property in 2010.

SCOTUS rules against IN, Pence vows to fight

May 29, 2013

The U-S Supreme Court is declining to review a lower court decision that prevents the state of Indiana from cutting Planned Parenthood out of its Medicaid program.

Governor Mitch Daniels signed a bill in 2011 that prevented Medicaid recipients from being reimbursed for health services at Planned Parenthood because some of its clinics offer abortions.

Planned Parenthood and the American Civil Liberties Union challenged the law in court.

Purdue hosts Earth Day activities

Apr 22, 2013

Purdue's Earth Day activities today (Mon) will feature exhibits, games and demonstrations along with campus and community project presentations.

The activities will conclude with a lecture by retired U.S. Marines Colonel Mark Mykleby.

Mykleby served as special strategic assistant to the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff from July 2009 to April 2011.

His talk, titled "Sustainability: Our National Strategic Initiative," is set for 5:30 in Forney Hall of Chemical Engineering.

The Hoosier Environmental Council wants to see progress in bringing high speed passenger rail to Indiana, and wants the public to get involved.

The Midwest Regional Rail System plan goes back to the 1990s, with the goal of connecting Milwaukee, Chicago, Indianapolis, Cincinnati, Detroit and Cleveland.

More federal funding has been made available in recent years, so states are jumping into action.

But Tim Maloney with the Hoosier Environmental Council says Indiana is lagging behind neighboring states.

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