5:01 pm
Sat February 25, 2012

Ranchers' Land Becomes Ground Zero In Energy Fight

Rancher Randy Thompson is fighting to keep the Keystone XL pipeline from being built in Nebraska.
Guy Raz NPR

Originally published on Mon February 27, 2012 7:38 am

Part one of a two-part series on the Keystone XL pipeline

Gas prices are spiking once again; the cost of a gallon of regular unleaded is about 12 percent higher than it was a year ago. But winter typically isn't the time for a rise in gas prices. Demand for gasoline is at a 14-year low and domestic oil production is at an eight-year high.

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The Two-Way
5:27 pm
Thu February 23, 2012

Monsanto Reaches Settlement On Agent Orange Class-Action Suit

A proposed settlement has been reached in a big class-action lawsuit against Monsanto. The case is connected to the company's production of the controversial herbicide "Agent Orange," the defoliant the military sprayed over Southeast Asia during the Vietnam War.

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8:52 am
Thu February 16, 2012

Purdue considers public comment on Energy Master Plan

Public comments on Purdue’s Comprehensive Energy Master Plan are being reviewed by university administrators.

The proposal aims to improve energy efficiency while still meeting heating and cooling needs on campus.

A hearing was held last night in Stewart Center, allowing the community members to give feedback in person.

In addition, the university has been fielding written comments on the plan since it was made available to the public January 10th.

Krulwich Wonders...
4:40 pm
Tue February 14, 2012

Is That A Starfish On My Face?

Jason de Caires Taylor jasondecairestaylor.com

Originally published on Tue February 14, 2012 9:50 am

The problem is we don't see the problem.

Because coral reefs sit below the water line, when they start to disintegrate (from pollution, overfishing, climate change, ocean acidification ... the list is long) most of us wouldn't notice. Or — and here's an irony — the more we notice, the more they disintegrate.

Some coral reefs are so overvisited, they are harmed by our attention.

What to do? Well, this is where the sculptors and weavers come in.

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The Salt
2:31 pm
Tue February 14, 2012

McDonald's Teams Up With Humane Society To Phase Out Pig Crates

Score one for the pigs. The news that McDonald's will require its U.S. pork suppliers to phase out the use of gestational crates should add a lot more momentum to efforts to end the practice of confining sows while pregnant.

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5:26 pm
Mon February 13, 2012

Purdue Sierra Student Coalition Calls for Greener Future

An environmental group at Purdue is asking the administration to include greener measures in the university’s Energy Master Plan.

The Sierra Student Coalition is presenting more than one-thousand public comments on how to provide additional clean energy options.

Organizer Alexis Boxer says the goal is to bring Purdue’s practices in line with some of its neighboring schools.

Boxer says there are prime opportunities now to raise funding for alternative energy efforts without increasing tuition for students.

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4:53 pm
Fri February 10, 2012

Return Of Gray Wolves Renews Debate Over Hunting

A gray wolf in the wild. Park officials say hunting restrictions in place in parts of of Montana have protected Yellowstone's wolves from a repeat of a 2009 hunt in which four Yellowstone wolves were shot.
MacNeill Lyons/National Park Service AP

Originally published on Fri February 10, 2012 6:24 pm

Gray wolves were taken off the endangered species list in Idaho and Montana last year and put under state control. But they're still on the list in neighboring Wyoming. That's because Wyoming has been the most aggressive about wanting to kill wolves.

Wyoming has finally struck a deal with the federal government regarding how wolves will be treated once the state takes over. But environmentalists believe the agreement denies wolves an important refuge.

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12:30 pm
Tue February 7, 2012

Indiana wheat crop on the right track

A Purdue expert says Indiana’s winter wheat crop is healthy and right on track despite wet weather at planting time last fall.

Agronomist Herb Ohm says the acreage for wheat is slightly reduced, but in very good shape.

He says Indiana farmers planted about 430-thousand acres of winter wheat for 2012, compared with the nearly 460-thousand for 2011.

Ohm says the wet fall delayed planting a bit, but the mild winter has allowed the crop to grow.

But he says if the warmer–than-normal temperatures persist, it could also lead to higher incidences of foliar disease.

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1:20 pm
Thu February 2, 2012

Could Cheap Gas Slow Growth Of Renewable Energy?

Natural gas is much cleaner than coal. But some energy analysts say an overabundance of the fuel could depress development in even cleaner energy sources like wind and solar power. Above, a rig in Washington, Pa., drills into shale rock to extract natural gas.
Keith Srakocic AP

Originally published on Thu February 2, 2012 1:57 pm

The boom in cheap natural gas in this country is good news for the environment, because relatively clean gas is replacing dirty coal-fired power plants. But in the long run, cheap natural gas could slow the growth of even cleaner sources of energy, such as wind and solar power.

Natural gas has a bad rap in some parts of the country, because the process of fracking is not popular. But many people looking at cheap natural gas from the global perspective see it as a good thing.

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The Two-Way
1:29 pm
Wed February 1, 2012

Remote Alaskan Volcano Shows Signs Of Activity

Originally published on Wed February 1, 2012 11:54 am

There's a new lava dome forming on top of Alaska's Cleveland Volcano, and the Alaska Volcano Observatory bumped up its aviation warning level to orange. That means the volcano is "exhibiting heightened or escalating unrest with increased potential of eruption".

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