Sarah Skiöld-Hanlin

Science Intern
via National Park Service

 Updated 2:40 p.m. Jan. 22:

The National Park Service is holding the last public meeting on its proposed management plan for the Ozark National Scenic Riverways tonight in Kirkwood. See below for more details.

Updated 3:10 p.m. and 4:40 p.m. Jan. 7:

Sarah Skiold-Hanlin, St. Louis Public Radio & The Beacon

Updated Thursday 10:15 p.m.

The Sierra Club says Ameren has been routinely violating air quality standards at its St. Louis-area power plants.

In a Notice of Intent to Sue delivered to Ameren on Wednesday afternoon, the Sierra Club alleges the company's Labadie, Meramec, and Rush Island plants have exceeded air pollution limits almost 10,000 times since 2008.


A new report suggests that Americans in urban areas are driving less.

The analysis of the 100 largest urban areas in the country by the U.S. Public Interest Research Group found that since 2000, fewer commuters are using cars to get to work. And in most cities, the use of public transportation has gone up (since 2005), and more people are biking to work or working from home (since 2000).

But, in St. Louis, the trend is less clear. Fewer workers are relying on cars, but the use of public transportation has also decreased.

(Saint Louis Zoo)

Updated Nov. 27 at 10:40 a.m. to correct two photo captions.

There’s a bird to be thankful for in St. Louis, but we’re not talking about turkey.

On Nov. 2, the Saint Louis Zoo welcomed yet another adorable addition, a fluffy Tawny Frogmouth chick.  Born to first-time parents, zoo keepers are taking extra precautions to ensure the chick develops properly.  

(Sarah Skiold-Hanlin, St. Louis Public Radio)

A nuclear policy analyst is adding his voice to those of area residents, environmental advocates and local government officials who want radioactive wastes out of the West Lake Landfill in Bridgeton.

Robert Alvarez served as a senior policy advisor in the Department of Energy under the Clinton administration and is currently a senior scholar at the Institute for Policy Studies.

(via U.S. Environmental Protection Agency)

The Illinois Department of Natural Resources is seeking public feedback on the state's first-ever regulations for high-volume oil and gas drilling.

The DNR published proposed regulations for hydraulic fracturing today, which begins a public comment period that will last until Jan. 3.

Kelsey Proud, St. Louis Public Radio

Updated at 5:50 p.m. with quote by Sara Parker Pauley; updated at 3:41 p.m. with quote by Lorin Crandall.

The Missouri Clean Water Commission has approved a sweeping regulatory overhaul of the state's water quality standards.

(via US Environmental Protection Agency)

The US Environmental Protection Agency held a community meeting in Hartford, Illinois, on Wednesday, to inform residents about the ongoing cleanup of the former Chemetco copper smelter.

This is the second of three open houses being held this year. Another will be held in December.

via NASA

A new report released today by the Natural Resources Defense Council warns that smoke from wildfires poses health risks to people living far from the actual blaze.

The study used data from 2011, an especially bad year for wildfires in the US, to rank states with the greatest number of residents affected by wildfire smoke for longer than a week.

Illinois and Missouri were ranked second and fourth respectively, despite having no wildfires of their own.

(Via Wikimedia Commons)

A lot has changed in the world of baseball since 1946. But a familiar pair of elite teams are once again playing in the Fall Classic.  For the fourth time, the St. Louis Cardinals are facing off against the Boston Red Sox in the World Series. Previous matchups took place in 1946, 1967 and 2004.

And this year's matchup has some striking similarities to the team's first meeting in 1946. Then, as now, St. Louis Cardinals defeated the Dodgers in playoffs before facing off against the Red Sox.

(via Enbridge)

In Quincy, Ill. the Mississippi River is a popular place to go boating.

Just a few miles north of here, in another part of Adams County, Enbridge's new Flanagan South pipeline project has quietly been given the go-ahead to cross the nation’s busiest river.

The 36-inch diameter pipeline will initially carry 600,000 barrels per day of heavy crude oil primarily from Canada’s tar sands region in Alberta. Light crude from the Bakken Formation in Montana and North Dakota could also flow through it.

(Véronique LaCapra/St. Louis Public Radio)

Kids with robots will continue coming to St. Louis for the next few years. FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) announced today that the world finals of its robotics competition will take place in St. Louis from 2015 to 2017.

The international competition has been held in St. Louis for the last three years and is scheduled to remain here next year, as well. Today’s announcement guarantees that the championship will return to St. Louis for the next three years after that.

(via Google Maps)

The Environmental Protection Agency is holding a public hearing Thursday evening about a proposed agreement to address water pollution from the illegal disposal of coal ash from Ameren’s Rush Island Power Plant.

According to the EPA, approximately 140,000 tons of ash containing heavy metals and other toxic substances contaminated Jefferson County wetlands, an unnamed tributary to Plattin Creek and a portion of Willers Lake.

(via U.S. Army Corps of Engineers)

A new report by a coalition of conservation and public interest groups representing the Upper Mississippi River basin is calling on Congress to reform the way it manages the river.

 According to the report, transportation infrastructure on the Mississippi River is the most heavily subsidized private transportation industry in the nation. 

(via Flikr/Stephen Bowler)

It's not easy to adjust to a new time zone or work schedule. Our body has a natural sleep/wake cycle and disruptions to it can lead to more than just feeling tired or exhausted.

Washington University professors Paul Gray and Erik Herzog are studying the biology behind our daily internal clock, or circadian rhythm. Sometimes referred to as the body or biological clock, Herzog defined it as "the entity within the body that synchronizes with an environmental cycle." This is not to be confused with the biological clock some refer to when thinking of a woman's desire to conceive. 

(via Google Maps)

Updated at 3:45 p.m. on August 14, 2013 and at 11:10 a.m. on August 15, 2013 (to add comment from Ameren).

Another St. Louis County official is calling for tighter pollution controls at Ameren's Meramec power plant.

St. Louis County Executive Charlie Dooley today released a letter he sent to the Environmental Protection Agency, urging the agency to pursue sulfur dioxide controls at the Meramec plant.

(Sarah Skiöld-Hanlin/St. Louis Public Radio)

A toxic eyesore in North St. Louis is finally going to be cleaned up.

The old Carter Carburetor Superfund site on North Grand Boulevard will undergo a long-awaited $30 million remediation, the Environmental Protection Agency announced on Monday.

The cleanup is the result of separate settlement agreements between the EPA and Carter Building, Inc., and ACF Industries, LLC. The two companies will cover most of the costs of the remediation.

Sarah Skiold-Hanlin, St. Louis Public Radio

A new report released Tuesday by a coalition of environmental groups focuses on the need to revamp national water pollution standards for coal-fired power plants.

The report cites Ameren's Labadie power plant in Franklin County as one of the worst waterway polluters in the nation.

(via Environmental Protection Agency)

Three Missouri agencies will receive $1.6 million in federal funds to cleanup and redevelop contaminated properties.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced this week that it has selected public authorities in St. Louis, Springfield and Jefferson City, to receive the funding as part of its $15 million supplemental revolving loan funds (RLF).

(via Center for Disease Control and Prevention)

Illinois' first case this year of West Nile virus in a bird has been confirmed. According to the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) the infected starling was collected by the Monroe County Health Department on June 27 in Waterloo, Ill.

This pattern of detection is part of an annual trend seen by health officials in which the West Nile virus is first detected in mosquitoes, followed by birds, and then, people. No cases have been reported so far this year in humans. However, according to health officials, it is only a matter of time before a person is infected.