Environment

The Dayton City Commission has updated the city's water ordinance.
Wikipedia

The Dayton City Commission has passed a controversial set of changes to the city’s source water protection program.

 

The current code regulates the chemicals around Dayton’s well fields, where most of Montgomery County’s drinking water comes from. Since the late 80s, the zoning code has legislated the amount of potentially hazardous substances that can be stored near the wells. A related regulation, which will remain in place, provides incentives for companies that had chemicals grandfathered in to reduce those chemicals.

 

Darryl Fairchild (center) appeared at a demonstration outside city hall Wednesday. He is also a candidate for City Commission. water
Lewis Wallace / WYSO

Activists are gearing up for another round of debate over the city of Dayton’s source water protection policy.

After more than a year of discussion, a compromise plan will go before the Dayton City Commission next week that would update the policy, which dates back to the late 1980s.

Ryan Von Linden
New York Department of Environmental Conservation

Across the Midwest and eastern U.S., an estimated 6 million bats have died from a devastating scourge that first appeared nine years ago. And while there’s been a recent glimmer of hope in treating bats with White Nose Syndrome, researchers say it’s going to be hard to recover from the damage done to these flying mammals.

The St. Kateri Preserve at Calvary Cemetery is among a handful of green burial options in the area.
Lewis Wallace / WYSO

The “green” movement is headed underground—to the grave, that is. More and more cemeteries around the country are offering burial options that use fewer materials and less energy; some are landscaped with native plants and trees. These simplified burials can also be cheaper—but there’s often a catch.

At a dedication ceremony for the St. Kateri Preserve at Calvary Cemetery in Dayton, Marge Devito and her husband Bill watch as a priest blesses the site. Bill has a terminal illness—and they love the idea of burying him in a nature preserve.

Bottles of Lake Erie water are tested in a lab.
Brian Bull / WCPN

Researchers at the Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District (NEORSD) say they’ve begun testing water samples with the latest technology, following last summer’s water shutdown in Toledo.

Hundreds of swimmers will soon take to the lake as the weather warms up. And some swimmers will perhaps pause to ask: “How clean is the water? Are there contaminants, pollutants? Is there a risk of blue-green algae?”

A sign for discounted E85 ethanol fuel. A requirement for alternative fuels in state vehicles has been removed from the Ohio Department of Transportation budget. gas cars
Sweeter Alternative / Flickr/Creative Commons

The Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) budget signed last week includes a change for the state’s vehicle fleet: the budget cuts out a requirement on alternative fuels that had been in place for most of a decade.

The ODOT budget eliminates the 2006 requirement to use a certain amount of ethanol and biodiesel in state vehicles. It’s about time, says Greg Lawson with the conservative think tank the Buckeye Institute.

Ohio Getting Over $4M To Fight Toxic Algae In Lake Erie

Mar 30, 2015
Satellite view of toxic algal bloom on Lake Erie
NASA Earth Observatory

The money will come from the federal the Great Lakes Restoration fund and go toward projects in the Maumee River watershed and the Sandusky River watershed in northwestern Ohio.

The Ohio Environmental Protection Agency says much of the money will toward preventing phosphorus from getting into the lake and fueling the algae.

Some will be used to fund projects that will take cropland out of production, install field runoff retention systems and restore six miles of stream channels to their natural habitat.

"Great Flood of 2015" picture posted on Flickr. Areas near Cincinnati were flooded for days following spring rains.
5chw4r7z / Flickr/Creative Commons

CINCINNATI (AP) — Forecasters expect the Ohio River to remain above flood stage for most of this week after reaching its highest level in two decades.

The National Weather Service says the river was at 57.1 feet this morning, after cresting Sunday morning at 57.7 feet. That was seven feet below the 1997 level that caused severe, widespread flooding in the Cincinnati area and in Kentucky.

Ohio's high court recent ruling limits local power over gas drilling.
WCPN

The Ohio Supreme Court has ruled that cities can’t enforce local laws banning fracking if the state has issued a permit to a driller. 

Farm Bureau Wants to Avoid Unintended Consequences with Water Quality Proposals

Feb 4, 2015
Satellite view of toxic algal bloom on Lake Erie
NASA Earth Observatory

Gov. John Kasich included cleaning up Lake Erie as a priority in his two-year budget proposal, and farmers seem ready to work with the governor—to a point.

To reduce the amount of harmful algae growth in Lake Erie and other public waterways, the governor’s office proposes banning the use of manure on frozen or rain-saturated farmland, among other measures.

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