Environment

Environmental News and Features

solar panel
Pixabay

As coal plants retire and the price of renewable energy gets cheaper, solar power will increasingly energize the country.

So in Kentucky, when you hear words like "net metering" and "distributed generation" it's easy to miss the big picture in the fight over solar power.

great parks team
Courtesy of Great Parks Of Hamilton County

At the end of 2018, Great Parks of Hamilton County put out the same plea it had made for the past four years: Drop off your broken or unwanted holiday lights at collection points located in six of its parks, and Cohen Recycling will pick them up for recycling and match the donation value of the lights back to Great Parks, up to $2,000.

As it turns out, last year was a particularly bright spot for the annual program. 

Bill Rinehart / WVXU

The commission that sets standards for pollution in the Ohio River has been considering dropping those standards, but will accept more public comment before making a decision. The Ohio River Valley Water Sanitation Commission (ORSANCO) has two webinars and three public hearings scheduled.

Provided: / Great Parks of Hamilton County

Updated March 6, 2:07 p.m.

As spring approaches, Great Parks of Hamilton County is hoping for a little help in stopping the spread of a perennial problem. Natural Resources Director Jessica Spencer is asking park visitors to keep an eye out for invasive species.

In a special election Tuesday, voters in Toledo said yes to a ballot measure that amends the city charter to include a Lake Erie Bill of Rights (LEBOR). With about 8.9 percent turnout of eligible voters, the ordinance was approved by just over 61 percent. 

According to the unofficial vote count from the Lucas County Board of Elections, over 16,200 ballots were cast.

vegetable garden
pxhere.com

Whether you're an avid gardener or just want to keep your landscape looking good, there are dozens of simple things you can do that are not only kinder to the environment but will cut-down on the time and money you spend on your yard.

coyotes
Dru Bloomfield / Wikimedia Commons

People are seeing more coyotes in neighborhoods throughout Greater Cincinnati lately, on both sides of the Ohio River. And that is causing many of them to worry about the safety of their children and pets.

Next Tuesday, Feb. 26, the residents of Toledo will have the chance to vote on an unusual (some might even say radical) proposal: whether to give the fourth largest lake in the United States its own Bill of Rights. If the ballot measure passes, it would be a win for the small but growing “rights of nature” movement, which aims to deter activities that pollute the environment by granting legal rights to ecosystems.

There are approximately 14,000 “orphaned” oil and gas wells across the state of Kentucky, according to state officials.

Abandoned by the original operators, these wells litter forests and fields, limiting where farmers can grow crops and presenting environmental and human health hazards. Many have been left uncapped to bubble gas and leak oil for decades.

Now, after five years of stakeholder meetings between environmental groups and the oil and gas industry, Kentucky lawmakers have introduced House Bill 199 to plug orphaned oil and gas wells and abandoned storage tanks that threaten health, safety and the environment.

Ann Thompson / WVXU

The Ohio River Valley Water Sanitation Commission (ORSANCO) is considering a new plan on water quality for the Ohio River, which is not as drastic as the first. Initially, the group had proposed eliminating pollution control standards and instead rely entirely on states to regulate discharges into the river.

Kentucky Senator Rand Paul introduced an amendment granting authority to the U.S. Secretary of Agriculture to sell off an unspecified amount of Daniel Boone National Forest near the border of Tennessee.

The amendment called for the sale of forest lands along U.S. Highway 27 from Burnside, Kentucky, to where the highway crosses the state line.

It didn’t describe exactly what lands would be included, it didn’t define what “along” meant and it didn’t prescribe a specific acreage, said Jim Scheff with Kentucky Heartwood, a public lands advocacy organization.

golden eagle
Pixabay

The Bernheim Arboretum and Research Forest could be tracking the first pair of golden eagles in the eastern United States.

This love story, like many others, starts over a romantic meal… just replace the candlelit dinner with some roadkill.

The Vital Role Urban Forests Play In Our Lives

Jan 9, 2019
piatt park
Wikimedia Commons

In late 2015, Cincinnati Parks starred in the documentary Trees in Trouble. The film describes the threat posed to forests by insects and highlights the Parks' efforts to respond to the Emerald Ash Borer crisis. It also explores the history of urban forestry in the U.S. and Cincinnati’s unique leadership dating back to its hosting of the United States' first Urban Forestry Congress in 1882.

cardboard box recycling
Pixabay

For more than 25 years, Cincinnati residents have diverted approximately 350,000 tons of material from landfills, according to Cincinnati’s Office of Environment & Sustainability. This holiday season, the city hopes to continue that trend.

David Stephenson / Associated Press

The impacts of global climate change are already being felt and are only projected to intensify. That's the conclusion of a U.S. government report that was supposed to come out in December. The Trump administration chose instead to release the report on Black Friday.

kentucky climate change
AP

Kentucky’s changing climate will test the resilience of its flood walls, sewer systems, crops, ecosystems and the health of its residents, according to the Fourth National Climate Assessment.

A Holiday Tradition: The Christmas Bird Count

Nov 26, 2018

Once the traditional holidays of Black Friday and Cyber Monday are over, some Americans look forward to another tradition: the annual Christmas Bird Count.  

Since 1900 birders have picked one day — sometime around Christmas — to survey as many birds as they can find in a 15 mile diameter circle.  

Birder Mike Edgerton, a member of the Greater Akron Audubon Society, says it’s been a valuable form of crowd sourcing.

winterberry holly
maxpixel.net

The Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden will present its annual Native Plant Symposium Saturday, November 10. Because native plants are adapted to our local environment, they require far less water and maintenance than plants not meant to grow in our area, saving time, money and water.

downtown cincinnati
Michael E. Keating/WVXU

Bloomberg Philanthropies announced Monday Cincinnati is one of 20 cities awarded a grant from the Bloomberg American Cities Climate Challenge.

Kentucky Unlikely To Meet New Climate Change Goal

Oct 10, 2018
Kyland Jackson / WFPL

Kentucky has just 12 years to drastically reduce its reliance on fossil fuels to do its part to save the planet from the worst impacts of climate change, according to a new report from the United Nations’ scientific panel on climate change.

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