Ag + Environment

COMMENTARY

Hold Biden administration to its promises for fairer ag markets

BY: - January 15, 2022

Family farmers like me have been calling for years for aggressive federal action to break up monopolies and make markets more fair. We know what happens when a handful of companies control livestock and meatpacking markets: farmers earn a shrinking share of the food dollar, farm income declines, and meatpackers earn huge profits. Meatpacking corporations […]

City official: Guard base contaminated Sioux City drinking water

BY: - January 14, 2022

There are small amounts of so-called “forever chemicals” in Sioux City’s treated drinking water, and the likely source of contamination is an Iowa Air National Guard base, said Brad Puetz, utilities director for Sioux City. An analysis of groundwater in the area about three years ago revealed perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl substances — commonly called PFAS […]

Lawmakers seek to salvage summer E15 fuel

BY: - January 14, 2022

Iowa’s two U.S. senators hope to codify a waiver into federal law that would allow gasoline fuels that are 15% ethanol to be sold during the summer. “I hope Congress can act to fix this issue,” U.S. Sen. Chuck Grassley, a Republican, said this week. “It makes no sense for a quirk of environmental regulation […]

Regional water plan advances with Urbandale vote

BY: - January 13, 2022

Two of the three major players of a proposed regional water system for the Des Moines metro area are on board. Now, attention turns to West Des Moines. The three trustees of the Urbandale Water Utility voted unanimously Wednesday to be a founding member of the proposed Central Iowa Water Works, contingent upon a palatable […]

Third carbon pipeline proposed for Iowa

BY: - January 12, 2022

Another out-of-state company has announced a plan to build hundreds of miles of pipeline to transport carbon dioxide from ethanol plants and pump it into the ground. Wolf Carbon Solutions said it has an agreement with Archer-Daniels-Midland Company (ADM) to take carbon dioxide from its facilities in Cedar Rapids and Clinton in eastern Iowa and […]

DNR: Ames drinking water has ‘forever chemicals’

BY: - January 11, 2022

Statewide drinking water testing has revealed two more cities with detectable amounts of toxic chemicals that persist indefinitely in the environment, including Ames, the state’s ninth-most-populous city. The Iowa Department of Natural Resources is sampling water in dozens of cities to gain a better understanding of the prevalence of perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl substances — commonly […]

State sues Sioux City for Missouri River pollution from wastewater plant

BY: - January 7, 2022

For years Sioux City has failed to properly treat its wastewater to ensure excessive amounts of bacteria or treatment chemicals weren’t expelled into the Missouri River, according to a state lawsuit that was filed against the city Friday. “The city potentially endangered human lives and wildlife by violating water-quality rules and perpetrating a fraud to […]

Navigator plans to seek pipeline permit in May

BY: - January 6, 2022

A Texas company that wants to build a pipeline to transport liquid carbon dioxide across the state has nearly concluded a series of informational, public meetings and plans to formally petition in May for permission to build it. “This is your land, and treating it with the utmost respect is the top priority for us,” […]

DNR: Felon asked wife to pretend she shot trophy buck

BY: - January 5, 2022

A 38-year-old rural Burlington man who is a convicted felon and prohibited from possessing firearms is accused of poaching a trophy deer with a muzzleloader rifle in October, according to court records. Adam Aaron Rhodes faces a felony charge for having a firearm and is accused of more than three dozen hunting violations. State conservation […]

Are ‘forever chemicals’ in your drinking water? Check here

BY: - January 4, 2022

The state has created an interactive, online map for Iowans to track whether their drinking water has detectable amounts of cancer-causing chemicals that persist in the environment indefinitely. The map reflects early testing by the Iowa Department of Natural Resources for perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl substances — commonly referred to as PFAS or “forever chemicals.” They […]

Some Democrats push to rescue climate plan in Biden spending package

BY: - January 4, 2022

A group of congressional Democrats on Tuesday called for preserving the climate portions of President Joe Biden’s stalled domestic spending bill as Democrats in the U.S. Senate rewrite the measure. U.S. Sens. Brian Schatz of Hawaii, Martin Heinrich of New Mexico, Tina Smith of Minnesota and John Hickenlooper of Colorado, along with Reps. Kathy Castor […]

Biden debuts $1 billion meatpacking competition plan

BY: - January 3, 2022

President Joe Biden unveiled plans Monday to allocate $1 billion in federal money to increasing competition in the meatpacking industry.  “Without meaningful competition, farmers and ranchers don’t get to choose who they sell to,” Biden said. “Put another way, our farmers and ranchers have to pay whatever these four big companies say they have to […]