Ag + Environment

Navigator asks Iowa regulators to pause its pipeline permit request

BY: - September 29, 2023

Navigator CO2 wants to suspend its pipeline permit process in Iowa until utility regulators in Illinois approve the project, according to a motion it filed in Iowa. The company wants to build a carbon dioxide pipeline system that would transport the captured greenhouse gas from ethanol plants and other facilities to Illinois, where it will […]

Animal-welfare group seeks criminal probe of Boone County dog breeder

BY: - September 29, 2023

Animal-welfare advocates are calling for a criminal investigation of the Boone County breeder who surrendered 93 dogs last week. The animals, which had been housed at Paris Puppies Paradise in Ogden, were turned over to the Animal Rescue League and Boone Area Humane Society. The state-licensed dog breeding operation is owned by 57-year-old Joel Paris. […]

Chemical levels grow in metro drinking water but remain below safety limits

BY: - September 29, 2023

A migrating plume of groundwater contamination is increasingly affecting Des Moines’ drinking water, but the contamination’s presence is still very small, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. For nearly two decades, an underground solvent plume has been tracked southwest of downtown Des Moines. It consists of trichloroethylene and other chemicals that result from its […]

Nearly all national park sites to close during government shutdown

BY: - September 29, 2023

Almost all National Park Service sites will be inaccessible during a partial federal government shutdown likely to start this weekend, the U.S. Interior Department said Friday. The agency will bar access to most of the nation’s 425 parks, recreation areas, national historic sites and other units, according to a fact sheet from the Interior Department, […]

Summit pipeline hearing will resume on Tuesday

BY: - September 28, 2023

A regulatory hearing for Summit Carbon Solution’s pipeline permit has concluded for the week and will resume on Tuesday. The Iowa Utilities Board had hoped to finish Summit’s evidentiary hearing by the end of this month, but the cross examination of witnesses has gone longer than it initially anticipated. Board chairperson Erik Helland and Summit […]

Metro drinking water consolidation plan reaches final stages

BY: - September 28, 2023

Water utilities in the Des Moines metro area are nearing an agreement to unify the production of drinking water, which they say will reduce future costs and make the supply more resilient. About a dozen utilities are expected to ratify a plan in the coming months to create Central Iowa Water Works, which would own […]

Congress takes aim at state animal welfare laws

BY: - September 28, 2023

Earlier this year, Oregon Democrats pushed through state legislation that allows local governments to require setbacks between neighbors and factory farming operations. The law prohibits farms from drawing unlimited amounts of free groundwater and requires farmers to apply for a permit before applying manure to their fields. It’s the kind of state regulation at risk […]

Drought in Iowa retreats slightly with rainfall

BY: - September 28, 2023

Widespread rainfall in the past week helped alleviate some of the worst drought conditions in Iowa, according to a Thursday report by the U.S. Drought Monitor. A wide area of exceptional drought — the worst of four classifications — in far northeast Iowa was upgraded to extreme drought in the latest report. That area has […]

Pipeline opponents decry handling of Summit hearing schedule

BY: - September 27, 2023

A tentative plan announced Wednesday by state regulators to extend a carbon dioxide pipeline hearing into next week was too hastily arranged and might affect landowners’ ability to participate, according to an attorney who represents more than 100 of them. “It’s just preposterous to just jerk us around day after day, week after week, thinking […]

Foreign ownership of U.S. farmland probed at U.S. Senate hearing

BY: - September 27, 2023

WASHINGTON — U.S. senators said during a Wednesday hearing that foreign ownership of U.S. farmland is a national security threat that should be further examined. The U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry discussed foreign ownership of the nation’s agricultural lands, with testimony from experts and Senate colleagues who have been taking the lead […]

How a looming government shutdown could hit national parks

BY: - September 27, 2023

National parks and nearby communities could forego millions of dollars per day during a partial government shutdown that could start this weekend. Would-be visitors will likely see restrictions on park access, though the extent of those restrictions was still unclear just days before a potential lapse in federal appropriations set to begin Sunday. Parks would […]

State regulators reject subpoena request for Rastetter testimony

BY: - September 26, 2023

An agriculture mogul who has a significant role in a pending carbon dioxide pipeline proposal will not be required to testify during its permit proceedings, the Iowa Utilities Board decided Tuesday. Several people sought a subpoena to compel the under-oath testimony of Bruce Rastetter, a co-founder of Summit Carbon Solutions. Pipeline opponents wanted him to […]