Ag + Environment

MidAmerican sends line crews to help Alliant after storm

BY: - August 19, 2020

MidAmerican Energy plans to send dozens of workers to eastern Iowa Wednesday to help Alliant Energy restore power for Alliant’s customers. Both investor-owned utilities have been scrambling to restore power after an Aug. 10 derecho storm knocked down trees, power lines and grain bins and damaged homes across the east-west midsection of the state. The […]

Farm interests optimistic after Trump pit stop in Iowa

BY: - August 18, 2020

Iowans are hopeful that President Trump will deliver more aid to the state and solve a financial headache for the ethanol interest after a half-hour discussion in a Cedar Rapids plane hangar.  Trump said he would personally talk to his top staffers about responding to the portion of Gov. Kim Reynolds’ $3.99 billion derecho damage […]

ethanol plant

Iowa biofuels groups to Trump: Rural Iowa won’t recover without full ethanol sales

BY: - August 18, 2020

Four major Iowa agricultural groups on Tuesday sent President Donald Trump a letter thanking him for federal storm aid but contending that rural Iowa won’t recover if he lets small refineries sidestep required ethanol purchases. Trump planned to visit Cedar Rapids late Tuesday morning to see damage from the Aug. 10 derecho storm that killed […]


Pence claimed ‘promises kept.’ Iowa’s ethanol industry says ‘false.’

BY: - August 17, 2020

Vice President Mike Pence claimed in Iowa last week that President Trump had fulfilled his promises to Iowa farmers and ethanol producers. It’s not true and he knew that, because Iowa farmers told him so. The Iowa Renewable Fuels Association (IRFA) put out a fact check Friday on the claims Pence made during his speech […]

Proposal would overhaul federal pesticide rules

BY: - August 14, 2020

Legislation has been introduced in Congress that marks the first attempt in decades to overhaul national pesticide regulations. U.S. Rep. Joe Neguse, a Colorado Democrat, is sponsoring a bill in the House that would ban three common chemicals, revamp the process for approving new products and allow cities to adopt stricter standards. While it’s unlikely that […]

The Des Moines River in downtown Des Moines serves as a water supply and a growing recreational draw.

State investigates fish kill in Ankeny after Hy-Vee workers dump milk down sewer

BY: - August 13, 2020

State investigators are assessing a fish kill in an Ankeny stream that feeds Des Moines’ water supply after Hy-Vee workers dumped 800 gallons of milk down a storm sewer.  A worker at the Hy-Vee in northern Ankeny told crew members to pour the milk in a storm sewer that dumps into a tributary of Fourmile […]

Pence, ‘taken aback’ by storm damage, pledges aid during Iowa trip

BY: - August 13, 2020

Vice President Mike Pence, campaigning in Iowa on Thursday, promised assistance to Iowans devastated by this week’s derecho storm, although he offered no specifics. Pence had no tour of storm damage in his schedule but he delayed a speech at the Iowa State Fairgrounds to meet with farmers affected by the natural disaster. “I must […]

Nonprofit challenges grocers’ petition to ease bottle bill requirements

BY: - August 12, 2020

A nonprofit group that has supported Iowa’s beverage container deposit bill has filed a petition with a state agency to block grocers’ latest attempt to change the rules.  Cleaner Iowa Inc., representing recyclers and others supporting the 1979 anti-litter “bottle bill,” has asked to be included in deliberations over two petitions the Iowa Grocery Industry […]

USDA extends pandemic-related aid payments to liquid-egg industry

BY: - August 12, 2020

Federal officials this week said they will provide coronavirus-related aid to producers of liquid eggs, a victory for Iowa’s congressional delegation.  Iowa is one of the nation’s top producers of eggs, 70% of which are sold in liquid form. Iowa’s U.S. senators and state officials had appealed to the U.S.Department of Agriculture to ensure liquid-egg […]

Iowa ag secretary: Central third of state’s crops damaged

BY: - August 11, 2020

The central third of Iowa’s cropland was heavily damaged, as were grain bins that would have held tens of millions of bushels of corn, Agriculture Secretary Mike Naig said Tuesday. Naig said some of the corn and soybean plants in the east-west band across the state will survive and produce grain, but it’s too early […]

Some state parks close after heavy storm damage

BY: - August 11, 2020

The straight-line winds from Monday’s storm in Iowa left several campers damaged by falling tree limbs and robbed some campgrounds of power, state officials report.  The Iowa Department of Natural Resources warned park users on Monday to check online warnings or call parks before visiting.  “The Iowa DNR urges visitors to avoid the areas or […]

Reuters: Derecho storm toppled ag facilities

BY: - August 11, 2020

Monday’s derecho storm brought winds of up to 100 miles per hour in the Midwest, robbing grain processing plants of power, toppling grain bins and damaging farm equipment, Reuters reported. It was another setback for agriculture, already fighting low crop prices due to the trade war with China, a strong growing season, and slumping demand […]