Severe weather and heavy rains pound eastern Iowa, rest of state


Nick Fetty | July 1, 2014
A wall cloud near Missouri Valley in western Iowa on June 29. Photo by Rich Carstensen; Flickr
A wall cloud near Missouri Valley in western Iowa on June 29.
Photo by Rich Carstensen; Flickr

Heavy precipitation and severe storms have caused flash floods, power outages, and other issues as approximately 2.5 inches of rain fell in Iowa City Monday afternoon.

The series of storms – known as a “derecho” – also produced gusts as high as 64 miles per hour which contributed to power loss for thousands in the Iowa City-Coralville area. As of 9 a.m. Tuesday, the Iowa River in Iowa City stood at 22.39 feet. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers announced Monday that it would increase the Coralville Reservoir’s outflow from 7,000 cubic feet per second (cfs) to 10,000 cfs beginning Tuesday. Efforts have been made to protect various University of Iowa buildings, including the flood-prone Mayflower Residence Hall on North Dubuque Street.

The severe weather has also impacted other parts of the state such as near Fairfax, where a building collapse has caused one death. Search efforts are currently underway for a Cedar Rapids teenager who is missing after being swept into a storm sewer while several were injured during a Cedar Rapids Kernels game last night. Hail ravaged western parts of the state while heavy winds and possible tornadoes hit central Iowa.

Governor Branstad has issued a disaster proclamation for several central and eastern Iowa counties including Adair, Cedar, Guthrie, Jones, and Linn.

For more information about flooding across the state, check out the Iowa Flood Information System.

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


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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

Governor Terry Branstad visited flooded cities in Iowa


Spillway in Coralville, Iowa.
Spillway in Coralville, Iowa. Photo by Iowa Governor Administration.

Governor Terry Branstad visited flooded cities in Iowa on Monday including New Hartford, Coralville and Iowa City. Continue reading

Gov. Branstad doesn’t want to change ethanol production


Governor Terry Branstad. Photo by Gage Skidmore, Flickr.

A week ago we reported that U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack does not want ethanol production to decline as a result of the drought.

Now Governor Terry Branstad has also revealed his support for not changing this year’s ethanol production goals.

This is bad news for livestock producers who want a reduction in ethanol production in order to help lower the current feed prices.

Read more from The Gazette here.

Lead shot update


 

Photo by ALBOWIEB, Flickr.

Governor Terry Branstad overturned the ban on lead shot earlier in the month, making lead shot legal for the upcoming dove-hunting season.

Originally, the use of lead shot for dove hunting was banned by the Natural Resources Commission due to lead’s harmful environmental effects. The dove season opens on September 1.

As noted on our radio segment, the biggest concern with lead shot are the unwanted wildlife deaths. Animals ingest the lead pellets after mistaking them for food.

Branstad opposed the ban in large part because he felt the Natural Resources Commission exceeded their authority when they issued it.

Read more from the Sioux City Journal here.