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Friday, July 12, 2024

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VA law prevents utility shutoffs in extreme circumstances; MI construction industry responds to a high number of worker suicides; 500,000 still without power or water in the Houston area; KY experts: Children, and babies at higher risk for heat illness.

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The House passes the SAVE Act, but fails to hold Attorney General Merrick Garland in inherent contempt of Congress, and a proposed federal budget could doom much-needed public services.

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Enticing remote workers to move is a new business strategy in rural America, Eastern Kentucky preservationists want to save the 20th century home of a trailblazing coal miner, and a rule change could help small meat and poultry growers and consumers.

The Black Swamp Conservancy has grown to protect more than 175 properties since 1997, covering more than 21,000 acres. (Linda/Adobe Stock)
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Friday, July 12, 2024
The Ohio Environmental Protection Agency is awarding $271,000 in grants for environmental education projects across the state. The programs will …

The Conservation Fund said it aims to protect five million acres of forest by 2035. (Adobe Stock)
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Deforestation remains a concern in the U.S. but success stories are emerging and Minnesota advocates said new achievements bode well for all …

The wild and scenic Eel River is part of the Bureau of Land Management's planned 382,000-acre management area in northwest California. (Wikimedia Commons)
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Conservation advocates say a new Bureau of Land Management final Environmental Impact Statement takes positive steps toward developing a management pl…

Advocates of EVs warn charging stations should be installed by qualified technicians so as not to damage the car's battery pack. (Adobe Stock)
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Wednesday, July 10, 2024
Clean air advocates are touting the benefits of electric vehicles in the wake of what they call "disinformation" from the U.S. petroleum industry…

Finn Does (center), summit co-chair, and other youth participants at the 2023 Bay Area Youth Climate Summit in San Francisco. (Finn Does)<br />
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By Elizabeth Hewitt for Reasons to be Cheerful.Broadcast version by Suzanne Potter for California News Service reporting for the Solutions Journalism …

Recent wildfires and subsequent flooding have made some low-income households in New Mexicans eligible for federal disaster food assistance. (AdobeStock/goodmanphoto)
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New Mexicans affected by recent wildfires and subsequent flooding may be eligible for Disaster Supplemental Nutritional Program benefits. The …

A new report from the Virginia Marine Resources Commission showed Chesapeake Bay's adult female blue crab population is around 133 million. While it is above the 72.5 million threshold to pause the harvest, it is well below the target of 196 million. (Adobe Stock)
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Wednesday, July 10, 2024
Virginia's Marine Resources Commission is ending the winter blue crab harvest prohibition. Crabbing is permitted from March to the middle of …

The Pilot Butte Wild Horse scenic loop runs between Rock Springs and Green River and through the White Mountain Herd Management Area, which encompasses over 390,000 acres. (Gates Frontiers Fund Wyoming Collection/Carol M. Highsmith Archive/Library of Congress)
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The Bureau of Land Management says it will start a wild horse roundup in Wyoming's White Mountain area, but wildlife advocates say the plan exceeds …

Many parks require you to stay a minimum distance of 25 yards from most wildlife and 100 yards from predators like bears and wolves, according to the National Park Service. (Joe A. Chansak/Adobe Stock)
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As summer travel peaks, wildlife experts are urging people to maintain their distance from wild animals they may encounter. North Carolina, home to …

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The gas-to-energy plant at the Keller Canyon landfill near Pittsburg, Calif., generates enough electricity to power nearly 2,200 homes. (Ameresco)
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Wednesday, July 10, 2024
By Miranda Lipton for Reasons to be Cheerful.Broadcast version by Suzanne Potter for California News Service reporting for the Solutions Journalism Ne…

Reports show newly constructed electric buildings can have lower energy bills than those with fossil-fuel systems. (Adobe Stock)
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New York's Building Code Council is set to include the All-Electric Buildings Act in its 2025 code update. The 2023 law bans natural gas and other …

Oil companies have publicly championed tech-based carbon-capture solutions in part because it would allow them to continue selling fossil fuels. (Adobe Stock)
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By Ysabelle Kempe for SmartCitiesDive.Broadcast version by Eric Galatas for Colorado News Connection reporting for the Solutions Journalism Network-Pu…

Red areas on the map show regions more likely to have wildfires. (Wildfire Risk to Communities)
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Wednesday, July 10, 2024
By Claire Carlson for The Daily Yonder.Broadcast version by Trimmel Gomes for Florida News Connection for the Public News Service/Daily Yonder Collabo…

Americans produces roughly 47 pounds of electronic waste per person each year, with more than 3 million tons of American e-waste going unrecycled annually, according to the report. (Adobe Stock) <br />
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Wednesday, July 10, 2024
Advocates for North Carolina's coastal waters are raising concerns about the risks of deep-sea mining and suggesting alternatives. The latest report …

Sen. Bob Casey, D-Pa., has held his seat since 2007. (Courtesy of Bob Casey for Senate campaign)
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Tuesday, July 9, 2024
Pennsylvania's landscape is being transformed through billions of dollars in federal funding from the Inflation Reduction Act and Bipartisan Infrastru…

More than two-thirds of the Local Food System Infrastructure projecta funded were small farms or food businesses. (Jaskaran Kooner/Adobe Stock)
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Wednesday, July 10, 2024
Washington state has allocated nearly $1.5 million in grants to support local food systems and supply chains. The Washington State Department of …

Use of cover crops, such as winter wheat, can help water and nutrients penetrate the soil and smother weeds, leading to better corn crops.  (Magnus/Adobe Stock)
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Wednesday, July 10, 2024
Three members of Nebraska's student-run climate advocacy organization Students for Sustainability were among the youngest participants at the recent C…

Proposed water permit changes in Minnesota to limit harmful runoff from industrial farms would only cover about 1,000 of the state's 17,000 livestock feedlots. However, environmental groups said the affected farms generate about one-third of the manure spread on agricultural fields. (Adobe Stock)
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Minnesota will soon hold public hearings on proposed water permit changes as it seeks to get control of nitrate pollution from industrial farms…

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The Wind River Canyon corridor is part of U.S. Route 20, the longest highway in the country, which spans 2,542 miles from Boston, Massachusetts to Newport, Oregon, according to the Federal Highway Administration. (Rita Robinson/Adobe Stock)
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Wednesday, July 10, 2024
Wyoming's Wind River Canyon corridor turns 100 years old this year, and federal grant money will soon support a study on potential improvements…

The Federal Transit Administration's Innovative Coordinated Access and Mobility Pilot Program has supported access to health with $24 million over five years, according to the agency. (Adobe Stock)<br />
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Wednesday, July 10, 2024
The Biden administration announced nearly $8 million in grants to improve public transportation, including a large and rural system in South Dakota…

Federal dollars are funding transportation improvements across California, including upgrades to the SPRINTER hybrid rail line between Palomar College and Escondido. (Xnatedawgx/Wikimedia Commons)
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Wednesday, July 10, 2024
Federal dollars are pouring into California transportation projects as a result of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. The Federal Transit …

Cherry-picking season has begun in Washington state. (Valmedia/Adobe Stock)
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Tuesday, July 9, 2024
A ruling from a federal judge will keep Washington state growers from depressing wages for farmworkers this harvest season. Judge John Chun has …

Transfarmation provides resources and support to industrial animal farmers interested in transitioning their farms to plant-focused operations. (Evgeniya Grande/Adobe Stock)
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Tuesday, July 9, 2024
By Lena Beck for Modern Farmer.Broadcast version by Shanteya Hudson for North Carolina News Service reporting for the Modern Farmer-Public News Servic…

Beyond legal-related maneuvers, the USDA has taken other steps to create more market fairness in the heavily consolidated livestock and meat production industry, including funding for more local processing options. (Adobe Stock)
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From North Dakota to Texas, the beef raised on farms goes through a production process controlled by four major companies and independent ranchers …

Untreated factory farm waste runoff contains high levels of fecal pathogens such as E. coli, antibiotics and cleaning chemicals. (Adobe Stock)
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Clean-water advocates are heading to state district court after Colorado regulators turned their back on a judge's decision last year calling for bett…

The Middle Fork of the Salmon River was one of the first rivers protected as Wild and Scenic by the federal government in 1968. (NorthwestWildImages/Adobe Stock)
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National Rivers Month comes to an end this week and conservation groups said it is a reminder more action is needed to protect Idaho's rivers…

Port Richmond on Staten Island has the highest amount of lead/possible lead service line in all of New York City, 60.67%. (Adobe Stock)
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A New York City bill is a catch-22 for removing lead pipes. The so-called "Rotten Apple Bill" makes city property owners remove their home's lead …

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The Northern Goshawk is dependent on old-growth forests and is especially good at getting into tight spaces. A federal judge in Montana has blocked a logging project that threatened the birds' habitat. (Adobe Stock)
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A federal court judge in Montana blocked a large project which would have logged or clear-cut more than 10,000 acres of old-growth forest and threaten…

Oso Outdoors offers winter and summer programs, including mountain biking, which aim to help bring more diversity to outdoor recreation in Summit County. (Adobe Stock)
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Conservation groups are asking federal agencies to give newly naturalized U.S. citizens a free America the Beautiful National Parks pass. Javier …

Environmental groups are working to attract more Latino families to enjoy the great outdoors on public lands such as the Alabama Hills National Scenic Area in southern Inyo County. (Louis Medina)
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Conservation groups are circulating a petition asking the feds to give "America the Beautiful National Parks and Recreation Lands" passes to new citiz…

From January to July 2023, about 51,000 dogs were euthanized around the country, a 37% rise from the same period in 2022, largely due to a higher intake of stray dogs and lower adoption rates. (tpap8228/Adobe Stock)
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June is National Foster a Pet Month, and animal rescues and shelters in Michigan are sending a clarion call for dog lovers to step up and save an …

Around 62% of Michigan households own a pet. Almost 42% of them own a dog and 31% own a cat. <br />(Drobot Dean/Adobe Stock)
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Animal lovers and activists in Michigan are celebrating proposed legislation to protect animals and save taxpayers money. Senate Bill 657 and Senate …

On most farms, pregnant sows are confined to a small "gestation crate" for the nearly four-month term of their pregnancy, during which the animals often cannot move or turn around. (Adobe Stock)
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Many food producers have made progress since 2008 toward ending the use of gestation crates for pregnant pigs, according to a new report from animal-…

The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization estimated up to 89.5% of the world's fish stocks are exploited at or beyond their maximum sustainable levels. (Adobe Stock)
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A new marine national monument in the Atlantic Ocean aims to protect one of the most biodiverse spots on the planet from overfishing. Located 130 …

Monterey Bay is one of many marine areas to be evaluated for inclusion on the list of places that qualify as "conserved" under the state's goal to protect 30% of California's land and water by 2030.(Nikolas_jkd/Adobe Stock)
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The public comment period is now open on California's new framework for deciding which managed areas within coastal waters meet the definition of "con…

The latest Living Planet Index report finds freshwater migratory fish saw an average 81% collapse in monitored population sizes between 1970 and 2020. This includes massive declines in Latin America, the Caribbean and Europe. (Adobe Stock)
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Groups in Connecticut are preparing to celebrate World Fish Migration Day on Friday. The biennial event celebrates migratory fish species and their …

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A soldier participates in the Norwegian Foot March at Fort Ord National Monument in Monterey County, Calif., in 2022. (Winifred Brown/U.S. Army)
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By Hannah Norman and Patricia Kime for KFF Health News.Broadcast version by Suzanne Potter for California News Service reporting for the KFF Health Ne…

The Drug Enforcement Administration reported seizing more than 115,000 pounds of methamphetamine in 2020, marking a 55% surge compared with 2018. (Gorodenkoff/Adobe Stock)
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Missouri may, at one time, have had a reputation as the "meth-lab capital of the country" - but a five-part podcast uncovers its true history…

PFAS are chemicals used since the 1940s. They are found in everyday products such as nonstick cookware. Public officials are sounding the alarm about health risks associated with the chemicals, including their presence in drinking water. (Adobe Stock)<br />
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Efforts to limit human exposure to so-called forever chemicals continue to unfold in Wisconsin. Meanwhile, advocates are hopeful residents will be …

If Minnesota adopts a plan that asks private companies to fund innovations in recycling and the collection of discarded materials, the state also would set a goal of all packaging being reusable, recyclable or compostable by 2032. (Adobe Stock)
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Minnesota ranks high for its recycling rate, but it still has a waste problem, putting more pressure on local governments. A plan in the …

Americans generate about 6.9 million tons of e-waste each year. (Adobe Stock)
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Tech giant Microsoft has responded to concerns about the environmental impact of discontinuing support for Windows 10 by offering extended security up…

Some 90% of middle and high schools and 84% of elementary schools were providing a device for every student, according to a March 2021 Education Week survey of school leaders. (Adobe Stock)
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Education advocates say pending expiration dates for Google Chromebooks teach kids the wrong lesson about technology. Software on thirteen models …

Y12 annually hosts female high school students as part of a program called "Introduce a Girl to Engineering." The goal of the event is to inspire girls to pursue careers in STEM-related fields. (angellodeco/Adobe Stock)
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Environmental groups in Tennessee will soon learn more about the approval process behind a radioactive waste landfill which has been processing and st…

A mural at the Patagonia store in Belltown, Washington, reminds residents they all live downriver from the Hanford nuclear site. (Hanford Challenge)
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"We all live downriver from Hanford," is the message painted on the windows of the Patagonia store in Seattle's Belltown neighborhood. It is a …

According to the U.S. Dept. of Energy, the Y12 complex has about 4,500 employees and another 2,000 contractors. (Enzo/Adobe Stock)
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A Knoxville-based environmental group is voicing health and safety concerns about the development of a landfill for radioactive waste from the Y12 Ura…

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Critics of PacifiCorp say the company broke a 2004 promise to retrofit its hydroelectric dams to include fish passages. (Kevin/Adobe Stock)
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Coming into the new year, Columbia Riverkeeper is supporting efforts by the Cowlitz Tribe and Yakama Nation to restore salmon migration throughout …

Salmon continue to struggle to migrate from the Pacific Ocean to Idaho to spawn. (NorthwestWildImages/Adobe Stock)
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The Biden administration wants to get serious about restoring salmon populations to the Northwest. A presidential memorandum directs federal …

Roughly 68 million culverts carry roadways that were built with design approaches dating from the 1950s, which did not consider the needs of aquatic organisms to move up and downstream, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation. (Adobe Stock)
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Fish passage is set to improve in the Northwest with an investment from Congress's bipartisan infrastructure law. The Biden administration has …

 

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