Whiterock Conservancy deemed best place to watch the August meteor shower

Photo by C. Fredrickson Photography; Flickr

The time for August’s annual Perseid meteor shower has come and the best place to watch it is the Whiterock Conservancy located on 1390 Iowa 141, Coon Rapids, IA 50058

Iowa’s astronomers have claimed that Whiterock Conservancy, a nonprofit land trust, is one of the darkest places in Iowa making it the best place in the state to view the meteor shower. Continue reading

EPA Chief to speak at Iowa State Fairgrounds Thursday

Gina McCarthy, EPA Chief. Photo by adamcmahon; Flickr

EPA Chief, Gina McCarthy will be in Des Moines Thursday, August 15 to speak with farmers at the Iowa Farm Environmental Leader Awards ceremony at the Farm Bureau Picnic Shelter on the Iowa State Fairgrounds. Continue reading

Minnesota joins four other states to ask insurers: How prepared are you for climate change?

Photo by Owen65; Flickr

The state of Minnesota has joined four other states, California, Connecticut, New York and Washington in requiring their insurance companies to inform the public of how much they have prepared for climate change. Continue reading

Protesters demand public access to the state’s water quality meetings with the EPA

Photo by Iowa Department of Education; Flickr

Approximately 12 Iowa citizens protestested yesterday outside of Governor Terry Branstad’s office demanding more public access to the state’s meetings with the Environmental Protection Agency regarding Iowa’s water quality.

Continue reading

Iowa Public Radio: “Could Electric Cars be Bad for the Environment?”

Photo by freefotouk; Flickr

Conservationist and author of the book “Green Illusions: The Dirty Secrets of Clean Energy and the Future of Environmentalism,” Ozzie Zehner spoke with Iowa Public Radio yesterday about the negative effects electric cars have on the environment, highlighting that they can have an even worse impact on the environment than average cars. Continue reading

Corn silking in Iowa behind

Photo by Pooporama; Flickr

This year’s Midwestern Corn Belt has fallen behind with an estimated 1 percent departure in the states of Iowa and Minnesota. The delay is due to late planting caused by the cooler spring weather and wet conditions which took place this year.

Data from USDA NASS

The map above displays the estimated percentages of tasseled/silking corn during the second week of July for each state as well as averages for the past 30 years.

These estimates were valid as of mid-July. For now, the corn crop needs moisture and too hot or dry conditions may pose a great risk for damage on the yield.

To read the full report from the USDA NASS click here.

Some push for higher priority of soil protection

Photo by NRCS Soil Health; Flickr

Senior Fellow with the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy in Minneapolis, Dennis Keeney wrote an opinion article in the Des Moines Register last week outlining that soil being one of the most important resources of Iowa’s agriculture, is also one of the most neglected resources. Continue reading

Iowa sees the “humidity effect” this week

Photo by Pentax_clic; Flickr

This week’s climate in some Iowa cities has been notably warm. However, the warmer than usual climate is not due to abnormally high temperatures, but rather high humidity levels.

Photo by Iowa State University Department of Agronomy

The chart above shows the difference between temperature and heat index at an 80 or above degree level. Continue reading

America’s risk for water scarcity linked to drought conditions

Photo by Burning Rubber; Flickr

A new report from Columbia University’s Water Center reveals that some of America’s businesses and cities are undergoing a much greater risk than before of water scarcity. Continue reading

Increase of earthquakes in the U.S. during the past three years linked to fracking wells

Photo by Leda Kat; Flickr

A recent study conducted by seismologists and geologists has proved that there is a strong positive correlation between waste-water wells and quakes. In the past three years alone, earthquakes in the U.S. have become five times more common than in previous years. Continue reading