Clean Water-Livable Communities conference next month in Fairfield


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Jenna Ladd | October 24, 2017

A statewide conference titled “Clean Water-Livable Communities” is scheduled to take place in Fairfield, Iowa on Thursday, November 9th from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm.

The conference will center around strategies to make clean water a top economic priority in Iowa. Four panel sessions are scheduled including: Iowa Water Overview; Robust, well-managed soils create clean water; Funding our clean water solutions; and Economic opportunities that result from clean water.

John Ikerd will be featured as the day’s keynote speaker. After receiving his PhD in Agricultural Economics from the University of Missouri, Ikerd worked in traditional agriculture for about a decade before he shifted his focus to sustainable agriculture during the farm crisis of the 1980’s. Since then, the Missouri-native has published six books about sustainable agriculture and economics, including Sustainable Capitalism: A Matter of Common Sense and Small Farms are Real Farms: Sustaining People Through Agriculture. Ikerd now lives in Fairfield, Iowa and co-teaches a Sustainable Economics course at Maharishi University of Management.

The conference is organized by the American Sustainable Business Council, Iowa Natural Heritage Foundation, Southeast Iowa Food Hub and the Iowa Chapter of the Sierra Club. Tickets will be available soon at http://www.fairfieldacc.com/site/buy-tickets.html.

What: Statewide Conference Clean Water-Livable Communities

Where: Fairfield Arts and Convention Center, 200 N. Main Street, Fairfield, Iowa

When: Thursday, November 9th from  9:00 am to 4:00 pm

Cost: $35 for non-students, $20 for students (includes lunch)

On The Radio – Fairfield receives $25 million loan from U.S. Department of Agriculture


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Jake Slobe | November 7, 2016

This week’s On The Radio segment discusses the $25 million dollar given to Fairfield to better their wastewater facility.

Transcript: The city of Fairfield has received $25 million dollars in order to make enhancements to its wastewater facility that will improve the water quality in southeast Iowa.

 This is the Environmental Focus.

 The U.S. Department of Agriculture Rural Development program is awarding a $25 million direct loan to the City of Fairfield that will help rehabilitate the city’s existing wastewater facility and bring it into compliance with Iowa Department of Natural Resources requirements.

 The existing plant was originally constructed in 1966, with updates and improvements added in 1984 and 2013. Still, the plant is not able to meet pollution limits and overflows into local streams during heavy rain events.

This loan, the largest USDA Water and Environmental Program loan ever issued in Iowa, will allow city leaders to implement a master plan over the next 10 years to make improvements to the treatment plant, repair much of the collection system, and address high flows during heavy rains.

Treatment plant upgrades will include new trash screens, new grit removal systems and pumps, as well as an enlarged flow equalization basin.

 For more information about the Fairfield project, visit iowaenvironmentalfocus.org.

 From the UI Center for Global and Regional Environmental Research, I’m Betsy Stone.

Storm ends snow drought for Iowa


A snow plow clears a road in Fairfield, IA. Photo by Will Merydith, Flickr.

As the season’s first major snowstorm drifted its way across the Midwest, Iowans said farewell to an unusual stretch of spring-like weather.

The snow was an annoyance for many commuters, caused hundreds of traffic accidents across the Midwest, and resulted in at least two deaths in Iowa.

However, for businesses that rely on snowfall, this storm was more than welcome.

“If people don’t see it in their yards they are not likely to come out and ski and snowboard so this is wonderful, wonderful, wonderful for us,” Kim Engel, owner of Sunburst Ski area in Kewaskum in southeastern Wisconsin, said as she watched the snow come down out the window.

Last week Iowa experienced an unprecedented level of warmth, with some areas of the state breaking their previous record high temperatures by ten degrees or more.

For more information, view the full article at the Des Moines Register.