Energy + Environment

After Clean Water Act ruling, states that want to protect affected wetlands need millions

BY: - December 5, 2023

Earlier this year, the U.S. Supreme Court stripped federal oversight from millions of acres of wetlands long protected under the Clean Water Act. Now, any safeguards to ensure those waters are not polluted, drained or filled in by development fall to the states. They’re finding that it’s not easy. “States and tribes already didn’t have […]

This land is our land: States crack down on foreign-owned farm fields

BY: - December 4, 2023

Andy Gipson gets concerned even when American allies such as the Netherlands and Germany invest in large swaths of Mississippi’s farmland. “It just bothers me at a gut level,” he said. For Gipson, Mississippi’s commissioner of agriculture and commerce, the growing trend of foreign ownership could threaten what he views as the state’s most valuable […]

Kansas and Missouri have 256,000 lead pipes. EPA wants them removed within 10 years

BY: - December 1, 2023

Utilities in Kansas and Missouri would have to pull hundreds of thousands of lead pipes out of the ground within 10 years under a proposed rule the Environmental Protection Agency announced Thursday. The EPA announced a proposed update to the lead and copper rule strengthening President Joe Biden’s earlier goal of eradicating lead pipes. The […]

Small meat processors say USDA measures don’t address consolidated industry’s root problems

BY: - November 30, 2023

Over the past two decades, Greg Gunthorp carved out a niche operating a small meat processing plant in northern Indiana. He sold several kinds of meat to chic Chicago and Indianapolis restaurants and to Chicago O’Hare International Airport, he said. He also sold direct to consumers. But selling in grocery stores was not an option, […]

Ahead of climate conference, U.S. House panel tussles over curbs on emissions

BY: - November 30, 2023

Republicans on a U.S. House panel argued Wednesday against aggressive moves to meet carbon reduction goals, saying U.S. fossil fuel companies are working to make their products cleaner. Democrats on the U.S. House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on the Environment, Manufacturing and Critical Minerals countered that to achieve further reductions, federal policies should be continued […]

New life for old coal: Minelands and power plants are hot renewable development spots

BY: - November 28, 2023

PETERSBURG, Ind. — AES Indiana’s Petersburg Generating Station, which towers over the White River here in southwest Indiana, has been burning coal to generate electricity since the late 1960s. That era, though, will come to an end soon. Two of the power plant’s four coal-burning units have already retired and the last is planning to […]

Ameren seeks to shutter Missouri coal plant early, recoup investment from ratepayers

BY: - November 28, 2023

Missouri’s largest electric provider hopes to use a state law meant to help utilities add renewable energy to close a coal plant found in violation of federal clean air laws.  St. Louis-based Ameren Missouri, which serves 1.2 million customers, is planning to close its Rush Island Energy Center in Jefferson County next year under a […]

Missouri farmers adopt practices that improve their land, support environment

BY: - November 28, 2023

On a small farm near Laddonia, Brian Willott waded through fields of dried corn stalks that had already been crushed into the ground. He had just finished harvesting his corn and soybeans and was preparing his empty fields to plant cover crops, which will hold his soil together and replenish its nutrients over the winter. […]

Some states act to protect residents from extreme heat — with a new focus on young people

BY: - November 27, 2023

After two years of record-breaking heat that brought a surge of deaths and health emergencies, several states have enacted or are considering measures designed to protect residents — with a new focus on younger people whose vulnerability is rising with the temperatures. Nationally, heat-related deaths rose from about 1,000 in 2018 to 1,722 in 2022 […]

Reliability v. sustainability: Inside the debate over the EPA’s proposed carbon rules

BY: - November 27, 2023

Electric reliability has been a hot topic lately — from congressional hearings to regulatory agencies and at the regional transmission organizations that run the electric grid in much of the country. The American electric grid is undergoing a major change, prodded by state and federal decarbonization policies, market forces pushing cheaper and cleaner forms of electricity […]

A year after devastating winter storm, power plant problems ‘still likely’ in extreme weather

BY: - November 20, 2023

Nearly a year ago, a Christmas weekend storm blasted across the country, forcing utilities to cut electricity to hundreds of thousands of people in parts of the southeastern U.S. after temperatures plunged, demand spiked, large numbers of power plants failed and natural gas supply was strained. As the anniversary approaches of Winter Storm Elliott, a pair […]

Federal report forecasts the Midwest’s climate future

BY: - November 17, 2023

More ticks. More mosquitos. Those are just a couple of the climate impacts facing Midwestern states in the coming decades, according to the just-released Fifth National Climate Assessment. The massive, congressionally-mandated report is released roughly every five years in an attempt to track how climate change is affecting the United States, and what policymakers can […]