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Environment 31 results

Guest Column: Protecting Indiana Forests, the Bad News and the Good

Since 2012, the Indiana Division of Forestry has increased logging of state forests by 400 percent, says Anne Laker of the Indiana Forest Alliance. In this guest column, Laker talks about the dangers facing our publicly owned forests and an Indiana Senate bill that could protect them. She also previews the upcoming Wild & Scenic Film Festival in Bloomington. Click here to read the full story

Peregrine Falcons, a Conservation Success Story

Peregrine falcons in America have soared back from the brink of extinction since the 1960s, even in Indiana. Just as humans caused their decline, “it was also dedicated humans who brought these birds back,” writes Jared Posey. This “standout conservation success story” is unusual because peregrines “may be benefiting from an increasingly urban landscape.” Click here to read the full story.

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Guest Column: Roots of Community Orchard Spread Across Town

Since 2010, the Bloomington Community Orchard has grown from a grassy acre into a fully planted orchard. But its roots stretch throughout the city, connecting with community members, businesses, and other organizations through skill-sharing classes, partner plantings, and other programs. In this guest column, BCO volunteer Megan Betz writes about the project — and the mysteriously vanishing peaches! Click here to read the full story.

Intentional Communities Must ‘Bend with the Times’

Southern Indiana has a long tradition of utopian communities, also known as communes. A few of the ones formed in the 1960s and ’70s — places like May Creek Farm and Needmore — have had to “bend with the times” to survive, says writer John Mikulenka in this detailed and expansive feature. But as the founding members age, he asks, who will take their place? Click here to read the full story.

Plight of the Honeybee — Beekeepers Save Bees for Us All

The plight of bees could also be the plight of the human race. When writer Erin Hollinden decided to start her own beehive, and save the world, she found plenty of support from a community of experts and other beekeepers. Read about how she got her hive humming here.

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Guest Column: IU’s Solar Strategy ‘Shortsighted’

Single city blocks all over Bloomington generate more rooftop solar energy than the entirety of Indiana University’s Bloomington campus, says writer Matt Flaherty in this guest column. What’s most troubling, he says, is that IU’s “dollars-and-cents analysis of solar power is the fundamentally wrong approach for IU to take.” Click here to read the full story.

Property Rights, Public Good, Campaign Contributions: Will Bill to Limit Local Government Be Revived?

A bill introduced in the Indiana House this year would have limited local governments’ ability to regulate such things as logging on private property, even if, for example, the logging threatened to damage Lake Monroe. But it isn’t just about private property vs. public good, writes Susan M. Brackney. Special interest groups and campaign finance play a role, too. Click here to read the full story.

850 Hoosier Scientists and Allies Oppose EPA Proposal

Concerned Scientists @ IU, a group of 850 local scientists and allies, has submitted a public comment to oppose the EPA’s proposed repeal of the Clean Power Plan. The EPA’s case for repeal, the scientists say, is based on “unconvincing legal arguments, without appropriate consideration of the scientific evidence for human-induced climate change.” Read their comment, as well as the proposed repeal, here.

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Invasive Plants Are Still For Sale in Indiana, How You Can Help

They’re a centuries-old assault on our environment, but eradicating invasive plants requires more than pulling them out by the roots — especially since big box stores still sell them and red tape in the governor’s office still allows those sales. Writer Susan M. Brackney explains this weedy predicament, and how people can help. Click here to read the full story.

Local Farmers Prepare for Spring Market Season

Knowing where your food comes from is more important than ever. With the first Bloomington Community Farmers’ Market of the season on Saturday (and markets in Ellettsville and Smithville starting soon), getting to know the farmers who produce it is easier than ever. Photographer Chaz Mottinger visited three farms to give us a closer look as they prepare for market. Click here to see her photos.

The Mesmerizing Sandhill Cranes, ‘Calling Us Home’

Every spring and fall, Indiana is at the heart of the eastern sandhill crane migration. Witness it once and you’ll mark their return on your calendar every year, writes LP contributor Jared Posey. “Flocks of sandhill cranes are a potent symbol of wildness,” he says, their loud, rolling chatter “calling us home.” Click here to read the full story.

Winter Gardening: Turning Little Thumbs Green

Winter gardening isn’t just for people who want to get a jump on their tomato starts. In his first LP contribution, Jared Posey shows how it can be a great way to educate and engage younger people. It’s the journey, he writes, “not the size of our cucumbers” that provides them with the lifelong learning. Click here to read the full story.