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Monday, June 17, 2024

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Family farmers call for tougher CAFO regulations in Farm Bill; The Midwest and Northeast brace for record high temperature in heatwave; Financial-justice advocates criticize crypto regulation bill; Ohio advocates: New rules strengthen protections for sexual-assault victims.

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The RNC kicks off its election integrity effort, Democrats sound a warning bell about conservatives' Project 2025, and Republicans suggest funding cuts to jurisdictions with legal cases against Trump.

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As summer nears, America's newest and largest international dark sky sanctuary beckons, rural job growth is up, but full recovery remains elusive, rural Americans living in prison towns support a transition, while birth control is more readily available in rural areas.

Not only is the Ike Jime process considered more humane, it also keeps harvested fish fresh for a longer period of time. (Adobe Stock)
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Monday, June 17, 2024
By Grace Hussein for Sentient.Broadcast version by Mark Richardson for California News Service reporting for the Solutions Journalism Network-Public N…

Utah hog farms and pork processors directly employed 1,899 workers and paid more than $100.7 million in total wages, according to the National Pork Producers Council. (Adobe Stock)
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An international animal right's group is calling on the U.S. restaurant chain industry to reduce or eliminate the use of gestation crates for …

Animal welfare groups say food companies that rely on inhumane practices in their supply chain expose themselves to financial risks, with investors and shareholders showing increasing concern about these issues. (Adobe Stock)
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Today is National Animal Rights Day, and some of the more popular restaurant chains in North Dakota are under fire for how the meats they use are …

New Mexico is among states with the most diverse species of animals, including the African oryx, or gemsbok. (NationalParkService)
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Monday, June 17, 2024
Wildlife advocates say the current transition to clean energy will not only protect people in New Mexico communities, but also will have a huge …

Of the nearly 2.5 million people living within the 78 coastal communities in Massachusetts, roughly 55% are in state-designated Environmental Justice Block Groups, communities of color and low-income populations dealing with the effects of climate change. (Adobe Stock)
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Friday, June 14, 2024
The City of Boston has been awarded nearly $10 million in federal funding to help build a Climate-Ready Workforce. More than 1,000 people will …

An Associated Press/NORC poll found 47% of people are unlikely to purchase an electric vehicle, with the biggest reason being the high cost. (Adobe Stock)
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As New York and New Jersey transition to electric vehicles, consumers have mixed feelings about it. Polls show fewer than half of New York drivers …

Amphibians and reptiles have more restricted geographic ranges than other vertebrates and are highly susceptible to threats like habitat loss, degradation and fragmentation. (Adobe Stock)
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Monday, June 17, 2024
The recently finalized Bureau of Land Management Public Lands Rule could give a boost to America's most at-risk terrestrial vertebrates: amphibians an…

Ohio artist Kenia Lamarr created a mural for the rusty-patched bumblebee, the first native bee on the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's endangered species list. (Kenia Lamarr)
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An upcoming festival in Columbus, Ohio, aims to raise awareness about the plight of pollinators and ongoing conservation efforts. According to the U.…

The United States loses on average more than 1 million acres of sage-grouse habitat each year to a combination of fires, invasive species, drought, energy development, mining, and roads. (Dale/Adobestock)
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The public comment period closes next week on the Biden administration's plan to protect the sage grouse, a bird whose health is linked to the larger …

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Last year, the Washington State Building Code Council approved codes to incentivize electric heat pumps. (V. J. Matthew/Adobe Stock)
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Monday, June 17, 2024
Signature gatherers in Washington state hope to get an initiative on the November ballot to roll back the state's attempt to phase out natural gas in …

New York gained more than 170,000 clean-energy jobs in 2022 with work in grid modernization growing more than 8% that year and making New York's battery storage and grid modernization sector one of the largest in the country. (Adobe Stock)
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New York State's legislative session has ended with climate bills a top priority. Legislation such as the Climate Change Superfund Act awaits Gov…

The rural population of the United States is roughly one fifth of all its residents, according to the Rural Climate Partnership report. (Adobe Stock)
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At least 12% of Utah's population lives in rural areas, and a new report finds that a significant portion of the state's greenhouse-gas emissions …

A zombie mine is shown in Clintwood, Kentucky. (Erin Savage)
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Monday, June 17, 2024
West Virginia and other Appalachian states are littered with hundreds of "zombie mines," abandoned mines neither producing coal nor undergoing reclama…

The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law allocated a total of $16 billion to address legacy pollution, including $11.3 billion in Abandoned Mind Land funding over 15 years. (Adobe Stock)<br />
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Friday, June 14, 2024
West Virginia will receive $140 million to clean up legacy pollution in regions decimated by decades of coal mining. The money is part of $725 …

The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law allocated a total of $16 billion to address legacy pollution, including $11.3 billion in Abandoned Mind Land funding over 15 years. (Adobe Stock)<br />
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Friday, June 14, 2024
Ohio will receive $46 million to clean up legacy pollution in regions decimated by decades of coal mining. The money is part of $725 million in the …

North Dakota's Pembina Gorge Recreation Area will soon become the state's 14th state park, with a 55-site campground and six all-season full-service cabins. (Photo courtesy of North Dakota Parks and Recreation Department)
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Monday, June 17, 2024
As temperatures warm up, people are enjoying nature - and North Dakota officials hope to see many more do so in the future as a new state park comes …

More than a half million people visited Crater Lake National Park in 2023. (reisegraf/Adobe Stock)
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Monday, June 17, 2024
June is Great Outdoors Month, which also underscores the importance of outdoor recreation in Oregon. As temperatures warm up, people are enjoying …

The Craters of the Moon National Monument and Preserve in central Idaho was established a century ago in 1924. (MelissaMN/Adobe Stock)
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Monday, June 17, 2024
June is Great Outdoors Month, which underscores the importance of outdoor recreation in Idaho. As temperatures warm up, people are enjoying nature…

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Iowa family farm advocates are calling on Congress to reduce the subsidies given to large-scale factory operations in the Farm Bill, and invest more in conservation programs that help small ag producers. (Adobe Stock)
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Monday, June 17, 2024
Family farm advocates are calling for cuts in federal subsidies to large animal feeding operations - technically known as Concentrated Animal Feeding …

The U.S. per capita consumption of pork amounted to 51.1 pounds in 2022, according to Statista. (zyabich/AdobeStock)
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For 15 years, U.S. restaurant chains have pledged to stop using gestation crates for pregnant pigs but a new report from an animal welfare group …

Montana is not among the list of states outlawing or restricting restaurants' use of meat products from producers using gestation crates to raise their livestock for the food chain. (Adobe Stock)
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A prominent animal-safety group is calling on restaurants to do more to ban the use of animal gestation crates where livestock and poultry are grown f…

Advocates are concerned that large corporate "factory farms" are threatening Minnesota family farms' ability to compete in the agricultural marketplace, and even their very survival. (Adobe Stock)
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Monday, June 17, 2024
With a September deadline looming for Congress to finish work on renewing the Farm Bill, Minnesota family farmers are pushing for more regulations to …

Around 27% of South Dakotans who applied for the Environmental Quality Incentives Program, funded by Inflation Reduction Act dollars in 2023, were accepted. (Marc Braner/Adobe Stock)
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Monday, June 17, 2024
The U.S. House of Representatives will likely vote this summer on a version of the Farm Bill, which passed through the committee process last month…

Between 2017 and 2022, Minnesota saw a more than 30% increase in farm acres planted with cover crops. (Adobe Stock)
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Friday, June 14, 2024
When Minnesota farmers watch their crops grow this summer, some will monitor land that has better soil health. It's because of a fairly popular …

The Proposition 479 investment plan is projected to create $2.4 billion in net new economic activity per year. (Eduardo Barraza / Adobe Stock)
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Monday, June 17, 2024
An Arizona organization said Proposition 479, which will be put to voters in November, is essential for the growth of the greater Phoenix area and …

Staring July 1, Minnesota drivers 55 and older will only have to take four hours of a driver safety course to get an auto insurance discount, down from the current requirement of eight course hours. (Adobe Stock)
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Monday, June 17, 2024
On average, nearly 40% of traffic-fatality victims in Minnesota are 55 and older. A law change soon goes into effect to help more of these drivers …

Revolution Mill is a former textile factory, spanning 45 acres about two miles outside downtown Greensboro. The 800,000-square-foot development features shops, offices, restaurants and apartments, and 2005 Revolution Mill, a $38 million mixed-use commercial and residential project. (Adobe Stock)
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Federal New Market Tax Credits are helping transform abandoned areas and boost local communities in North Carolina and across the nation. In …

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Illinois is bordered by 880 miles of water - the Mississippi River, Ohio River, and Wabash River. according to the Illinois Department of Natural Resources. (Adode Stock)
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Monday, June 17, 2024
Federal law and Illinois law are at odds over ownership, access, and use of the state's streams, lakes & rivers - and the Legislature failed to pass …

Two South Dakota drought resiliency projects will supply about 130 homes with high-quality drinking water. (Adobe Stock)
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Some rural South Dakotans struggle to get good drinking water but the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation has awarded two local communities with grants to …

The Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation has proposed issuing water withdrawal permits, which would allow several local water utilities to increase the amount of water they pull from the Duck River by about 16 million gallons daily. (RobertMiller/Adobe Stock)<br />
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The Duck River, which flows through seven Middle Tennessee counties, has made a national list of "most endangered" rivers. The group American Rivers …

The group says the United States should work with partner countries willing and able to enforce strict terms or face sanctions. (Anastasiia/Adobe Stock)
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A group of environmental and civil society organizations is fighting for better working conditions for people in countries that supply critical minera…

About 400 companies will be involved in building the new Highmark Stadium in Buffalo through bids for new construction and demolition of the old stadium. (Quintin Soloviev/Wikimedia Commons)
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The new Buffalo Bills stadium may not be the best environmentally but it has some green qualities. The steel for the stadium is being made locally …

A flooded site at the Austin Master Services toxic-waste storage facility in Martin's Ferry, Ohio. (Jill Hunkler)
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Environmental groups say more should be done to protect people's health from what they call toxic, radioactive sludge. A court granted a temporary …

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 …

Maine's aquaculture harvest more than doubled in volume and in value over the past decade. It creates more than $100 million in annual revenue for the state, according to the Maine International Trade Center. (Adobe Stock)<br />
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New England fishermen and environmental groups are working to prevent the growth of industrial-size fish farms in U.S. open waters. They said …

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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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