Friday, April 6, 2012

Mississippi River Basin Water Resource News for the Week

It's been a quiet week in Lake Wobegon, and in Washington, DC, as well, what with the spring Congressional break in full swing.  But nonetheless, we've managed to pull together a better than average "Mississippi River Basin Water Resource News for the Week" edition, consisting of over four dozen news and research information links (with a heavy agriculture and Farm Bill emphasis) and a "final word" from Robert Redford.

Notable @UpperMiss Twitter Postings for the Week  

Agriculture -

  • IL farmers faced with "too much good weather too soon"
  • Rep. Ellison (D-MN) introduces bill to effectively ban use of controversial pesticide ingredient atrazine
  • US farmers intend to plant 95.9 M acres of corn in 2012, up 4% from 2011; news: report: (PDF)
  • Iowa City Gazette : Iowa corn farmers need the nitrogen that's impacting Gulf of Mexico
  • Farmers will plant this spring on acreage that was previously off-limits and protected by USDA conservation program
  • 30 national conservation organizations urge appropriators to oppose cuts to agricultural conservation programs; pdf:
  • Minneapolis Mayor Rybak expected to sign off on policy to make it easier to grow and sell fresh food in the city
  • US corn belt growing season off to rough start as warm, dry winter has left soil low on moisture
  • Loss of lands enrolled in Conservation Reserve Program threatens to wipe out 100s of 1000s of acres of wildlife habitat
  • Many US farmers waiting for crop insurance coverage to kick in instead of aggressively planting corn early
  • Louisiana rice mills, Kellogg's and LSU AgCenter developing sustainable farming program for rice growers

Farm Bill-

  • US Rep. Tom Rooney (R-FL-16): Senate to take up Farm Bill in April and May, House will take it up in May and June
  • House Agriculture Committee's Arkansas March 30 Farm Bill field hearing ag producer testimony posted online
  • Environmental Working Group op-ed: The farm bill taxpayers want
  • 32 senators call for a 2012 Farm Bill that will build on previous specialty crop investments; pdf of letter -
  • "New farm bill by September? Don’t bet on it."
  • Senate Agriculture Committee member Max Baucus (D-MT) wants strong crop insurance and conservation titles
  • National Grain & Feed Assoc urges Senate Ag Committee to implement fundamental reforms to Conservation Reserve Program

Water Quality -

  • Environment groups: more than 6.2 million pounds of chemicals released into Iowa’s waterways in 2010
  • Memphis working with TN and federal agencies on Clean Water Act consent decree
  • Report says EPA’s 2010 Toxics Release Inventory places Ohio River at top of list for receiving toxic discharges
  • Mid America CropLife Assoc’s water consultant: MN on frontline on battle over numeric nutrient water quality standards
  • Iowa Wetland Landscape Systems Initiative tests the ability to clean up farm runoff water
  • USGS report: Water quality improvements and best-management practices in Wisconsin agricultural watersheds

Water Resource Management (Floodplains, Dams, Navigation, Wetlands, Flooding, etc.) -

  • Sens. Inhofe (R-OK) and Boxer (D-CA) introduce bill to reauthorize North American Wetland Conservation Act
  • Mississippi River Commission meeting: Developers must spend too much to mitigate for wetlands loss via @Johann3216
  • Army Corps Releases Working Draft of Port & Inland Waterways Modernization Strategy; pdf: & info:
  • Lawmakers are finding that updating US inland and coastal ports will be a heavy lift
  • CSU climatologists confirm that 98 percent of Colorado is experiencing drought; most severe in Arkansas River basin
  • Draft EPA "National Water Program 2012 Strategy: Response to Climate Change" released for public comment
  • NPR: A review of global water security and water shortages in the US (51 minute audio stream)
  • USGS projecting groundwater declines through 2037 in eastern Arkansas
  • Water-use conservation scenarios in the Mississippi Delta in northwestern Mississippi
In the States -

  • MN Gov. Dayton signs bipartisan legislation streamlining environmental permitting applications for state businesses

Forestry -

  • IN DNR dispersing almost $250,000 in tree-themed funding to 21 cities across state

Biodiversity, Wildlife and Invasives -

Gulf Coastal Area-

  • Poll: Louisiana voters overwhelmingly want legislators to approve state’s 2012 revision of Coastal Master Plan
  • Sea-level rise along Gulf Coast-including LA-occurred at much faster rate in the past 100 years than in previous 1,000
  • New Orleans residents get updates from Army Corps and state on levees, coastal work

Resource Extraction -

  • OH geologists redraw maps highlighting where Utica shale is expected to yield most oil and gas across state

Federal Budget -

  • President Obama and Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) poised to go another round in battle over Federal budget


  • EPA Webcast: "Using Clean Water Act State Revolving Fund for Nonpoint Source & National Estuary Projects” April 17
  • National Journal forum: How Diversity is Reshaping Politics & Policy; April 19, Washington DC
  • Horiniko Group Webinar: Biofuel Production-Dissecting the Water-Energy-Land Nexus; May 17
  • Farm Foundation Forum: U.S. Farm Land Values: Boom or Bust? April 11; 8 AM; Washington, DC

Other news-

  • Accounting for nature's benefits: The dollar value of ecosystem services
  • NY U School of Law study "The Regulatory Red Herring, The Role of Job Impact Analyses in Environmental Policy Debates"

Political Scene -

Last Word -
"It's all about winning, and it's all about the egos attached to winning and what people will do and say just to win." - Robert Redford, speaking on the state of U.S. politics to the BBC.

No comments:

Post a Comment