Ag + Environment

Climate group urges beefier electric grid

BY: - October 13, 2021

Iowa should prioritize updates to its electrical power grid in the coming years to protect residents from outages caused by devastating storms and to meet increased demands that will follow the rise of electric vehicles. That is the latest recommendation from a group of more than 200 university and college professors and researchers who released […]

State announces puppy mill inspections in advance: ‘Let’s do Wednesday at 10:30’

BY: - October 11, 2021

State inspections at Iowa’s dog-breeding facilities are supposed to take place on a “surprise” basis, but some of Iowa’s biggest offenders have their inspections scheduled at their own convenience. Although the federal U.S. Department of Agriculture handles the enforcement of the federal Animal Welfare Act, the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship also plays […]

State hits puppy mill owner with $20k fine and license suspension

BY: - October 4, 2021

In a rare move, Iowa regulators are imposing a significant fine against a dog breeder that federal officials have called one of the nation’s biggest repeat violators. The Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship is fining Wayne County breeder Daniel Gingerich $20,000 and suspending his Iowa license for 60 days, the department announced Monday. […]

Citing ‘shocking’ actions of Iowa dog breeder, judge issues restraining order

BY: - October 1, 2021

A federal judge has issued a temporary restraining order against an Iowa dog breeder described by regulators as one of the nation’s biggest repeat violators. U.S. District Court Judge Stephanie Rose issued the order this week, just one day after the U.S. Department of Agriculture brought suit against Daniel Gingerich, formerly of Seymour, for numerous […]

‘Wildfire year’ meant record days at high alert, Forest Service chief says

BY: - September 29, 2021

The U.S. Forest Service spent more consecutive days this summer at the agency’s highest level of preparedness for wildfires than in any previous year, Forest Service Chief Randy Moore told a U.S. House subcommittee Wednesday. Moore’s comments reflected the growing danger from more intense and harder-to -control fires that have swept Western and Midwestern states […]

Iowa is one of the nation's top producers of wind energy. (Photo by Perry Beeman/Iowa Capital Dispatch)

OSHA to ramp up workplace heat checks as global warming advances

BY: - September 29, 2021

Federal workplace safety regulators say they are taking steps toward protecting workers from heat-related illness. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration on Sept. 24 announced that it will finally establish a federal workplace heat standard. The agency also promised an expansion of heat inspections and enforcement of rules protecting against heat hazards.  Iowa recorded 882 […]

Iowa politicians united in opposition to biofuel mandate cuts

BY: - September 28, 2021

Iowa politicians are united in their opposition to lowering federal biofuel blending standards amid reports that President Joe Biden is considering rolling them back. Reuters reported last week that Biden is considering cutting biofuel blending requirements due to a lower demand for gasoline. Under the potential plan, Biden would retroactively lower mandates for 2020 and […]

COMMENTARY

Biden urges countries to slash methane emissions 30% – here’s why it’s crucial for protecting climate and health

BY: - September 25, 2021

The U.S. and European Union are working on a pledge to cut methane emissions by at least 30% this decade, President Joe Biden announced on Sept. 17, 2021, and he urged countries around the world to join in ahead of the U.N. climate summit later this year. The move is a big deal for efforts […]

Heated battle over trout stream and planned cattle operation lands in court

BY: - September 23, 2021

The Sierra Club of Iowa is suing the Iowa Department of Natural Resources and Supreme Beef over a proposed a feedlot set to house 11,600 head of cattle. The lawsuit, filed Thursday in Iowa District Court for Clayton County, alleges that Supreme Beef’s proposed new concentrated animal feeding operation, or CAFO, in Clayton County uses […]

Struggle over tax break for inherited farmland churns below surface in reconciliation bill

BY: - September 19, 2021

WASHINGTON — Agricultural groups and farm-state lawmakers notched a significant win when U.S. House Democrats chose not to touch a big tax break for inherited property, avoiding for now a confrontation. But opponents remain wary that the idea could come back at any time as Democrats shape their massive $3.5 trillion budget reconciliation package, and search […]

Biden administration to move land bureau HQ back to D.C.

BY: - September 18, 2021

President Joe Biden’s administration has announced it will return the headquarters of the Bureau of Land Management to Washington, D.C., reversing a controversial decision by the Trump administration — with the support of a bipartisan array of Colorado political leaders — to relocate the office to Grand Junction. The BLM’s Grand Junction office will instead […]

Dairy farmer: Fix ‘broken’ milk pricing system

BY: - September 15, 2021

A Granville, Iowa, dairy farmer appealed to a Senate subcommittee Wednesday to help fix a “broken” milk-pricing system she said has worsened conditions in an era of financial uncertainty. Christina Zuiderveen, managing partner of Black Soil Dairy LLC and an industry leader, said the federal milk marketing orders system “promised dairy producers that if their […]