Environment

Missouri Could Be In for a Major Earthquake

In 1811 and 1812, three of the largest earthquakes ever felt in the continental United States devastated the crossroads of northeastern Arkansas and southeastern Missouri. Known as the New Madrid Earthquakes, they had estimated magnitudes of up to 8.7 and ruined farmland, displaced people and altered landscapes around the region.

Illinois Coal Plants Are Being Offered Second Chances as Solar Projects

Across the country, new life is being breathed into coal-burning power plants that once choked their surroundings with emissions: sites that once produced massive amounts of greenhouse gasses are being transformed into solar and battery projects — and some experts say they are actually ideal locations to do so.

From Pets to Pests to Planters, Squirrels’ Storied History in Ohio

During the 18th century, squirrels were the sought-after, beloved companions of many Americans. Fast forward a hundred years, and squirrels in Ohio were so numerous that they had a bounty on their heads. From pets to pests to planters, squirrels have had a unique relationship with humans. Today, beyond serving as a bizarre bragging right for college campuses, they continue to be a crucial part of our ecosystems as seed sowers in wild and urban areas alike.

Burning Questions: What Do Rising Wet-bulb Temperatures Mean for the Midwest?

Broiling, sweltering heat. The muggy kind that wraps around you like a damp, heavy blanket. The unbearable boiling that makes you feel like you’re running on a treadmill in a sauna while wearing your thickest winter coat that’s zipped up to your chin.

The Ongoing Effects of Toledo’s Water Crisis

In 2014, Toledo, Ohio experienced a severe water crisis caused by toxic algal blooms in Lake Erie. The height of the crisis — when the city’s drinking water was shut down for half a million residents — only lasted three days, but the effects of the crisis continue to impact residents today. Each time we turn on the tap water, pay water bills, sit on a boat or fish in the river, the ecological imbalance that reared its head in 2014 affects our lives in subtle — and often unequal — ways.

Man Versus Nature? How Humans Have Shaped the Indiana Dunes

Henry Chandler Cowles first stepped foot on the dunes of Indiana in the late 1800s while working on his dissertation for the University of Chicago. Studying the landscape, he noticed a progression in plant maturity that moved from the coast inland: barren sands became dotted with grass, and then shrubs and eventually forests.

Cincinnati, Ohio: A Climate Haven?

From severe heat waves and wildfires to violent flooding and tropical storms, it is no secret that climate change has been waging its world...

Minnesota’s Ice Season is Shrinking, Impacting People and Fish Alike

Known as the land of 10,000 lakes, Minnesota’s many bodies of water form an integral part of the state’s identity year-round. The summertime recreational usage of the state’s actual 14,380 lakes includes swimming, boating and fishing, all of which can be experienced in rural towns and major cities throughout Minnesota.

How Climate Change is Shaping Michigan’s Coastal Management

You might remember earlier this year when a video of a North Carolina home being submerged in the Atlantic ocean went viral as a...

Exploring Urban Heat in Toledo, Ohio

It’s July 19th, 2021, a beautiful summer day in a tree-lined neighborhood in Toledo, Ohio. The sun is shining and the temperature hovers around 86 degrees Fahrenheit, but there’s plenty of shade to make a picnic or a barbecue pleasant despite the heat. But if you live a few miles away — particularly in the inner-city — it’s more than 10 degrees hotter, substantially raising both health risks and electric bills…

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