NASA predicts 2016 will be the warmest year on record for Earth, but forecasters offer a prediction of relief for 2017. Weather forecasters say a new annual record is unlikely in 2017 since the effect of El Niño is fading. That does not mean 2017 will be much cooler, however. Forecasters say the long-term trend is towards warming, but there is natural variability, bringing ups and downs to overall temperatures each year. La Niña, the cool counterpart to El Niño, is expected to be weak and develop late this fall or early winter.
The Environmental Protection Agency has been taken to the woodshed by its Office of Inspector General, which said the agency has failed to provide legally required reports to Congress. In a report posted on the EPA's website on Thursday, OIG said EPA has not prepared reports on the environmental impact of the Renewable Fuel Standard, as required by the Energy Information and Security Act of 2007.
Rice farmer Mark Isbell changed how he nurtures rice plants on 70 acres of his Arkansas farm. Instead of flooding the rice fields for the entire growing season, he now practices what is called alternating wet and dry farming, where he allows the water to drain from the rice field for about a week mid-season. "What that impacts is the cell bacteria that typically in a flooded environment creates methane," Isbell told GreenBiz in an interview over the phone, the sound of his truck rumbling in the background.
England is adding moe teeth to am already serious to an effort aimed at curbing the country’s hefty sugar consumption. On top of a tax that’s about to be levied on soft drinks (one similar to Mexico's), the government announced today that it also wants the entire food industry to cut one-fifth of the added sugars from nine types of food. On its list: cereal, breakfast foods like pastries, yogurt, cookies, cakes, candy, desserts, ice cream, and “spreads”. The goal is a 20 percent reduction after four years.
Food industry marketers no longer have the sole power to shape consumer tastes and fuel demand for their products. That power has been largely hijacked by new influencers—public health activists, celebrity nutritionists, politicians, food bloggers—who have their own agendas and can influence public sentiment as never before. Their megaphone is sympathetic media, especially online: social media, consumer websites, and an exploding number of alternative news outlets.
With harvest bearing down, south Louisiana producers were looking to close out a difficult 2016 growing season in a positive manner. Then, August rains arrived and flooding soon followed leaving mandatory evacuation orders, road closings and crops underwater. Indeed, for southwest Louisiana agriculture, the flooding is especially devastating. “About 75 percent of our rice is located in southwest Louisiana,” says Dustin Harrell, LSU AgCenter rice specialist. “A lot of the area got 18 to 24 – even more than 24 – inches of rain. That caused a lot of flooding, including rice fields.
Specifically, U.S. Right to Know is asking for correspondence between 10 UC Davis professors and businesses in the agrochemical industry. The group has sent similar requests to universities across the country, Ruskin said. The organization is trying to uncover collusion between the agrochemical industry, the food industry, universities and faculty members, he said. U.S. Right to Know has also requested public records it says will show how the World Food Center at UC Davis is funded.
Across the animal kingdom there is a strong trend for females to be more caring parents. Why? Researchers have now expanded upon previous theories to better explain why mothers and fathers differ in the effort they put into caring for young.
Deep in the heart of the U.S. grain belt, farm-equipment auctions are attracting bidders from as far away as South Africa as the agriculture rout makes used machinery more attractive. As farmers move away from buying new tractors and combines, it could mean more pain for Deere & Co., the world’s biggest agricultural equipment manufacturer, which is already struggling through an industrywide glut. To understand why, look no further than Matt Maring, owner of an eponymous Kenyon, Minn.-based auction operation.
Agricultural leaders have established a not-for-profit Illinois Fairgrounds Foundation to catch up on nearly $200 million in needed maintenance. Combined, the fairgrounds have $180 million in overdue maintenance. The grounds in Springfield have 170 buildings - the oldest 124 years - on 360 acres. The oldest among 20 buildings at DuQuoin - which has 1,200 acres - is 93 years.