"Gov. Terry Branstad and state lawmakers are working to put the state agriculture department in charge of key water-quality programs, a move critics fear will undercut the state's ongoing struggle to clean waterways choked with silt, algae and worse."
Great Plains (IA KS ND NE MO SD)
"[Iowa] officials warned Monday about the threat of flooding, particularly in the Big Sioux and Mississippi river basins."
Some Iowa lawmakers are pushing a bill they say would protect children by removing from the market many plastic products containing BPA, which some scientists think harms health. Lobbyists for the chemical industry say that's premature.
"When environmentalist Naomi Davis walks past the boarded-up homes and businesses in her Woodlawn neighborhood, she envisions a community that will confront the climate crisis by becoming self-sustaining, with vibrant, black-owned stores and green gardens."
"Changes in Iowa's weather patterns, landscape, cities and farms have rendered some of the state's most trusted flood prevention safeguards outmoded and inadequate, a review by The Des Moines Register shows."
"The struggle over huge livestock farms continues to roil in Missouri and Kansas, and no wonder -- a new report shows the two states in the middle of the growing concentration of factory farming."
"After a four-year effort, a western Kansas utility won state permission Thursday to construct an 895-megawatt, coal-fired power plant."
"The state of Iowa is failing to warn people to cut back on eating locally caught fish contaminated with mercury and other pollutants at levels the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency finds too risky, a study by The Iowa Center for Public Affairs Journalism has found."
"For several weeks, nine Kansas state employees have been voluntarily working weekends and late into the night to finish a review of a permit for a power plant. ... And that worries the coal plant’s opponents, who said the extra hours were a clear signal that the state was pushing the permit process too fast."