Environment

Looking for Caves in Kentucky

Jul 6, 2016
caves.org

Jonathan Carman says there are many caves yet to be discovered throughout Kentucky.  Carman is vice president of the Bluegrass Grotto and works with the Cave Research Foundation.  The Jessamine County caver says he’s been in 40 to 50 caves, using a compass, inclinometer, and tape measure to survey areas underground.  Carman says he’s always felt confident about getting back out of a cave.  “But there have been times when I looked at part of the cave, whether tight or difficult to traverse, and thought long and hard about whether or not it was going to be worth the risk to take.”

Officials Focus on Lightning Safety

Jun 21, 2016
wikipedia

Lexington Emergency Management officials says one-third of lightning injuries occur indoors.  This information comes during  Lightning Safety Awareness Week.

Men are five times more likely than women to be struck by lightning. It may seem that lightning strikes themselves are rare, but the fires and deaths they cause are a very real problem.

Louisville National Weather Service Meteorologist Ryan Sharp says  although only ten percent of people who get hit by lightning die, the rest are left with lifelong injuries.

Sti Johnson
weku.com

Temperatures are expected to creep back into the 90’s Monday and that can mean a health risk for outdoor pets.  That’s especially the case when humidity levels spike as well. 

Lexington Humane Society Development Manager Ashley Hammond says there’s not a specific temperature for specific dogs when the risk is highest., “If it’s too hot for you, it’s too hot for your pet. You want to make sure you limit the time that they spend outside if the humidity level is high as well as the temperature is high."

U.S. Senate Action Seeks Munition Disposal Alternatives

Jun 17, 2016
bechtelparsonsbgcapp.com

    Efforts focusing on developing new methods for disposal of conventional munitions continue in Washington.  The legislation would likely impact operations at the Blue Grass Army Depot. 

The U.S. Senate this week approved the National Defense Authorization Act.  It included a provision seeking alternatives to open air burning and detonation of hazardous munitions waste.  

 

Kentucky River Sweep Cleans Up in 18 Counties

Jun 16, 2016
Kentucky River Authority

The Kentucky River Authority is credited with cleaning up many Kentucky waterways through its volunteer-driven River Sweeps. This weekend’s sweep at Ft. Boonesborough will add to a list of water quality successes.

Study: Kentuckians’ Views On Climate Change Based On Politics

Jun 13, 2016
wkms.org

A survey has found some interesting takeaways about Kentuckians’ attitudes toward climate change, including that the biggest influence on beliefs may be political affiliation rather than scientific knowledge.

There have been numerous studies about attitudes toward climate change around the country, but very few have looked at Kentucky specifically. For her master’s thesis at Kentucky State University, Jennifer Hubbard-Sanchez surveyed 229 Kentuckians about their climate change beliefs and knowledge.

Earth Day in Ky. Includes Focus on Lead, Radioactivity

Apr 22, 2016
soul-friends.com

Earth Day 2016 is being celebrated globally with events in Kentucky as well.   At the state level, there are two areas of environmental emphasis right now.

Kentucky Energy and Environment Cabinet Spokesman John Mura says an oil and gas work group begins meeting next month.  Topping its agenda will be radioactive material discovered recently in two Kentucky landfills.   He believes that was the genesis of the immediate work that the group is doing.  “I think that its mission will extend past that to all restricted substances,” said Mura.

National Environmental Health Director Comes to EKU

Apr 19, 2016
kyforward.com

The director of the National Environmental Health Association believes one day many pollutants from fossil fuel combustion will be greatly reduced.  Dr.

Hundreds Expected for 18th Reforest the Bluegrass

Apr 8, 2016
Stu Johnson / WEKU News

Hundreds of people are expected to help plant trees this weekend for the 18th Reforest the Bluegrass. Lexington Natural Resources Program Manager John Saylor says 7,000 seedlings are ready to be planted near Interstate 75 in the Deep Springs Greenway.  “It flushes chemicals and stuff into our creeks and streams and our waterways and so trees are our little bio-filters, they’re gonna capture a lot of that for us,” said Saylor.

The Kentucky Division of Forestry says the spring forest fire hazard season has begun.

A statement says burning laws will be enforced through April 30. During that time period, it is illegal to burn anything within 150 feet of woodland or brush land between 6 a.m. and 6 p.m.

Officials said the law bans burning during times when conditions are most likely to cause a blaze to spread.

Weather Varies During Holidays Across U.S.

Dec 29, 2015
louisvillecan.org

Extreme and in some cases, tragic weather conditions over the holidays are sure to prompt more discussion about climate change.  Sarah Lynn Cunningham, director of the Louisville Climate Action Network, says recent conditions do not fall into a normal climate pattern.  She says any measures to reduce pollutants could carry long term weather impacts.  “Greenhouse gases, once they’re in the atmosphere, are gonna warm the earth for a while, sometimes a long while,” Cunningham said.  “But anything we do now is gonna be making things a whole lot less worse than they’re gonna be if we keep tryin

Unseasonably Warm Winter Likely Beyond Christmas

Dec 22, 2015
accesswdun.com

The unseasonably warm Christmas week weather may be only a sign of things to come in 2016.  University of Kentucky Agricultural Meteorologist Matt Dixon says longer term projections, even into February, call for higher than normal temperatures.  He says that would differ greatly from a year ago.  “Outlooks are pointing toward a warm start to 2016 and that would be almost the direct opposite of what we’ve had the last two years,” Dixon said. “Definitely be a break from those minus 20’s we saw last year.”

Kentucky Legislative Research Commission

bill pre-filed in the General Assembly would declare Kentucky a “sanctuary state” for people and companies who don’t want to follow federal environmental laws that will restrict carbon dioxide emissions from power plants.

Kevin Goldy / The Daily Independent

A landfill in Eastern Kentucky will shrink after the company, state and citizens’ groups reached an agreement Tuesday.

The Big Run Landfill in Boyd County is Kentucky’s largest landfill, and the final repository of garbage and sewage from many East Coast states. In June, the Citizens of Boyd County Environmental Coalition filed a lawsuit against the company and the Kentucky Energy and Environment Cabinet, arguing the measures that expanded the landfill a decade ago weren’t constitutional under the Kentucky Constitution.

lge-ku.com

In the final weeks of Gov. Steve Beshear’s administration, state regulators and legislators haven’t closed the door on the possibility that Kentucky will create its own plan to comply with upcoming federal carbon dioxide regulations.

Len Peters, secretary of the Energy and Environment Cabinet, spoke Tuesday before a special legislative task force made up of lawmakers and industry representatives.

Courtesy of Energy and Environment Cabinet

The Secretary of Kentucky’s Energy and Environment Cabinet has officially submitted his resignation to Democratic Gov. Steve Beshear. Secretary Len Peters’ last day in his position will be Dec. 7, which is also Beshear’s last day in office.

Peters’ resignation isn’t a surprise; as the head of a cabinet, his position is one that is typically appointed by the governor.

Although Governor-elect Matt Bevin, a Republican, hasn’t yet announced who he will choose to lead the Energy and Environment Cabinet, Peters included a farewell letter in the October issue of the cabinet’s magazine (which was published before the election) indicating he was planning on resigning no matter who took office.

Peters has led the cabinet since 2008. He’s a chemical engineer by training, and before working in state government he led the Department of Energy’s Pacific Northwest National Laboratory. He’s also held academic and administrative positions at the University of Kentucky and Virginia Tech.

epa.gov

The Environmental Protection Agency’s final draft of the Clean Power Plan includes stricter regulations than originally proposed. 

J. Tyler Franklin / Louisville Public Media

Kentucky Attorney General Jack Conway says he’ll again sue the Environmental Protection Agency over new federal carbon dioxide rules. 

NASA

Climate change will begin to have a demonstrative effect on Kentucky’s economy within five years.

They beat the EPA on coal, and now a group of state attorneys general hopes to score a similar victory on farming.

facebook.com

More than a thousand people are expected at the Kentucky Horse Park tomorrow morning for the 17th Reforest the Bluegrass event.  John Saylor, a senior arborist in Lexington, says there will be streamside tree plantings.  "We've had a lot of rain this week, so a lot of standing water, a lot of flooding pooled up in certain spots out there in the placing area.  Basically those trees will absorb that water and you won't have as much runoff going right into the channel," said Saylor.

Firefighters Still Tending to GE Appliance Park Fire

Apr 6, 2015
wfpl.org

A reduced crew of firefighters remains on site at the fire that broke out Friday at General Electric’s Appliance Park in Louisville.

dailyfinance.com

A new analysis of products purchased at dollar stores around the country show that most included significant amounts of at least one hazardous chemical. 

wfpl.org

Kentucky’s coal production and employment dropped only slightly in 2014, but sharper declines are likely in the future.

dca.ky.gov/brownfields

Kentucky communities can apply for grant money to help clean up brownfield sites.

Many Kentucky Homes Remain Untested for Radon

Jan 5, 2015
homemd.com

January is National Radon Action Month. Kentucky is recognized for having high levels of the colorless and odorless gas. Barrett Schoeck is an Environmental Specialist with the Fayette County Health Department.  Schoeck warns that radon levels can change due to home renovations.  "Some homes might test low and say, you put a bathroom or something in your basement, you then could potentially increase your radon levels because you're creating holes in your foundation," said Schoeck.

bggreensource.org

A central Kentucky organization is expanding its workshop opportunities. Lexington based Greensource this week is launching its GreenForce program.  Volunteer Coordinator Ashley Bryant-Chaney says the first training session is set for this weekend.  "So, we hope to train the people, so that they can go out into the community, whether that be at an outreach event or a school and actually spread information about environmental education and about things like recycling and litter and water quality and energy conservation," said Bryant-Chaney.

wkyt.com

The Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources says the federally protected whooping crane has been showing up in Kentucky and warns hunters the species is off-limits.

Green Summit Looks at Environmental Collaboration

Oct 30, 2014
Stu Johnson / WEKU News

A group of about 60 people gathered Friday in Lexington in an effort to coordinate sustainability measures of many different organizations.  Bobby Clark, coordinator of the first Bluegrass Forever Green Sustainability Summit, says energy saving measures are often doable for individual residents or businesses.  "Use energy star type appliances, change what they are doing because most people predict that energy costs are gonna double over the next ten years.  Can you imagine your electric bill doubling at your home or your business?  It's an economic development issue," said Clark.

Fernando Thomas/Wikimedia Commons

A partnership between the local utility and state and federal government will build Kentucky’s largest solar array at Fort Campbell.

Pages