Environment & Weather
Branstad, Reynolds to convene public meeting in Mt. Pleasant on dry and drought weather conditions PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Environment & Weather
Written by Office of the Governor of Iowa, Terry Branstad   
Thursday, 12 July 2012 12:54

(DES MOINES) – Gov. Terry Branstad and Lt. Gov. Kim Reynolds announced today that they will hold a two-hour public meeting on the severe dry and D1 Drought conditions that have plagued Iowa this summer. The event will be held Tuesday morning at the Mt. Pleasant High School gymnasium, and members of the public are encouraged and welcome to attend.

The public meeting will feature officials from the Iowa Department of Natural Resources, Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship, Iowa Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Management, and the USDA. Outside expert testimony will feature agricultural groups and environmental experts.

The discussion will include the latest information and tracking metrics, how coordination is being handled between the state and federal levels, and potential action steps that may be taken in order to ensure Iowa’s needs are met. The public is invited to share their thoughts and concerns.

Details of the meeting are as follows:

Tuesday, July 18, 2012

9 a.m. Gov. Branstad and Lt. Gov. Reynolds hold public meeting on dry and D1 Drought conditions

Mt. Pleasant High School  gymnasium

2104 South Grand Avenue

Mount Pleasant, IA

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Big Win for Baby Sea Turtles PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Environment & Weather
Written by Sierra Club   
Wednesday, 11 July 2012 12:48
The Sierra Club's Puerto Rico Chapter notched a huge victory when the island's governor signed a bill protecting nearly 2,000 acres of the Northeast Ecological Corridor from development. For more than 15 years, a proposal to build two megaresorts loomed over the Corridor, which includes one of the most important nesting grounds on Earth for the endangered leatherback sea turtle.

"Golf courses and baby sea turtles don't mix," says Sierra Club Executive Director Michael Brune. Find out how the Sierra Club Puerto Rico Chapter and other grassroots groups kept this wondrous place from being turned into condos and putting greens.

EPA to Hold Two Public Hearings on Proposed Clean Air Standards for Particle Pollution PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Environment & Weather
Written by Ernesta Jones   
Monday, 09 July 2012 13:49

Speaker registration now open for hearings in Philadelphia and Sacramento, Calif.

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will hold two public hearings on the proposed updates to the national air quality standards for fine particle pollution (PM2.5). A federal court ruling required EPA to update the standards based on best available science. The proposed updates, which meet that requirement, build on steps already taken by EPA to reduce pollution in communities across the country.

WHAT: Public hearings on proposed updates to national air quality standards for fine particle pollution.

WHEN: July 17, 2012 (Philadelphia) 9:00 a.m. - 9:00 p.m. EDT   
July 19, 2012 (Sacramento) 9:00 a.m. - 9:00 p.m. PDT

WHERE: July 17, Philadelphia

William J. Green Federal Building
600 Arch Street
Philadelphia, Pa. 19106

July 19, Sacramento, Calif.

California Air Resources Board
1001 "I" Street
Sacramento, Calif. 95814

To register to speak at the hearings, contact Alan Rush at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or 202-564-1658. Members of the public also may register in person at the hearing and will be accommodated as time allows. EPA also will accept written comments on the proposed standards until Aug. 31, 2012. EPA will issue the final standards by December 14, 2012.

Note: Please bring picture identification and allow additional time to enter the buildings and go through security.

More information on the hearings and instructions for submitting written comments: http://www.epa.gov/pm/actions.html

Governor Quinn Urges Residents to Stay Safe During Record High Temperatures PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Environment & Weather
Written by Leslie Wertheimer   
Friday, 06 July 2012 13:14

Temperatures to Rise Over 100 Degrees; Governor Encourages Visits to  Cooling Centers, Wellness Checks

CHICAGO – July 5, 2012. With temperatures throughout Illinois at historic highs and surpassing 100 degrees for several days this week, Governor Pat Quinn again urged Illinois residents to take precautions to stay safe and cool. The Governor also encouraged residents to visit cooling centers and to check on family members and neighbors who are vulnerable to hot weather, including the elderly and children.

“Illinois is experiencing record-high temperatures and it is critical that people take the necessary steps to stay safe and cool during this extreme heat,” Governor Quinn said. "We are all in this together and people should regularly check on their children and elderly neighbors and relatives to make sure they are safe, hydrated and keeping cool.”

Governor Quinn and the Illinois Department of Public Health are encouraging Illinois residents to be conscious of and responsive to signs of heat-related illnesses. Symptoms of may include headaches, skin that is hot to the touch, increased body temperature, loss of consciousness, seizures and irregular heartbeats.

The Illinois Department on Aging also encourages relatives and friends to make daily visits or calls to senior citizens living alone. When temperatures and humidity are extremely high, seniors and people with chronic health conditions should be monitored for dehydration and other effects of extreme heat. Additionally, seniors should eat lighter meals, take longer and more frequent rests, and drink plenty of fluids.

To stay cool, avoid illness and prevent heat-related injury or death, people should increase their fluid intake but avoid drinks with caffeine, alcohol and sugar; decrease strenuous activity; and remain in air-conditioning when possible. In addition, people should avoid prolonged outdoor activity and visit the state’s cooling centers if needed.

More than 120 cooling centers are open around Illinois, in order to help those without air conditioning find respite from the heat. The cooling centers are located at Illinois Department of Human Services offices throughout the state, as well as at Illinois Tollway Oases in the Chicago area. Cooling centers are open to the public during regular business hours, from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Illinois Tollway Oases are available 24 hours/day.

For more information about cooling centers, call the Illinois Department of Human Services hotline at (800) 843-6154, or visit KeepCool.Illinois.gov for locations. For information about heat preparedness and cooling centers, visit the Ready Illinois website at Ready.Illinois.gov.


The 19th Anniversary of Wave Rider, the Great Flood of 1993 PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Environment & Weather
Written by Jonathan Kirkham   
Monday, 02 July 2012 14:51

Story by Jonathon Kirkham, Illinois National Guard Command Historian Intern

SPRINGFIELD, IL (07/02/2012)(readMedia)-- Today commemorates the 19th anniversary of the Great Flood of 1993, which lead to Operation Wave Rider, the largest state active duty mission in the history of the Illinois National Guard. More than 7,000 Soldiers and Airmen were activated after heavy rains led to record flooding of the Mississippi, Illinois, Rock, Sangamon and Wabash rivers.

On July 1, Illinois Governor Jim Edgar alerted Maj. Gen. Donald Lynn, The Adjutant General of the Illinois National Guard to prepare for a potential flood mission. Three days later, Lynn activated units for Operation Wave Rider.

Soldiers and Airmen provided support to 44 counties declared natural disaster areas by state and federal officials. Operations included security, levee maintenance and repair, sandbagging, search and rescue, water distribution, medical assistance and aviation support.

Despite the extensive damage, Soldiers and Airmen proved valuable assistance to the disaster relief and cleanup resulting in zero loss of life. By Dec. 1, only 33 Guardsmen remained in the hardest hit areas to provide additional security.

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