Friday, June 5, 2015

What We Learned This Week - "Blosom, we hardly knew ye'"

A cleanup of the aftereffects of a 2013 North Dakota oil pipeline spill will take at least two more years.  Medications, cosmetic ingredients, and endocrine disruptors have been found in Minnesota lakes and streams, while ten percent of the state's non-community drinking water systems have groundwater sources affected by surface nitrate discharges.  Minnesota Governor Dayton vetoed an agriculture-and-environment budget bill that contained parts of his stream buffer zone initiative.  The Clean Water Act rule fight has entered a new phase, which looks eerily similar to the earlier phases.  Dairy farms on Colorado's Eastern Plains are prompting nitrogen enrichment and "biological weirding" in the Rocky Mountain National Park.  The White House objected to a House Commerce, Justice and Science spending bill  and expressed "serious concerns" with a Senate energy and water development spending bill.  Five invasive bighead carp were found in the St. Croix River, seven miles upstream from where they had been previously detected.  "Blosom," the world's tallest cow, passed on to the big pasture in the sky after holding the title for less than a year. Wisconsin plans to create an Office of Open Government to help the public obtain government records more quickly and consistently, while the Obama Administration was severely criticized for not being too quick or consistent in answering records' requests.  State legislatures in Kansas, Iowa and Illinois are mired in budget gridlocks, but that's not the case in Kentucky.  Drought relief continued in the water-logged mid-section of the U.S. and the relief is predicted to continue through the month of June. Oklahoma and Texas rain eased, and Arkansas and Louisiana braced for downriver flooding. Organic agriculture is far more profitable than conventional farming.  And last but not least, Neil Young is looking to release an entire album dedicated to the agrochemical corporation, Monsanto.

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