Mark Langgin

Dark money lobbying Iowa legislature on solar bill

A new dark money group is threatening clean energy progress in Iowa. Mark Langgin digs into the social media advertising campaign that emerged a few days ago. -promoted by Laura Belin

Looks like the utilities and electric cooperatives are up to no good. A new “dark money” organization just launched ads on Facebook.

The “REAL” Coalition began advertising on Facebook on March 1, arguing for legislation that would undermine net metering. The REAL Coalition is doing this under the guise of promoting renewable and clean energy.

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Iowa Farm Bureau: Voice of Hypocrisy and Big Business

(The facts about the Farm Bureau should be more widely known. - promoted by desmoinesdem)

(*Cross-Posted from Op-Ed by Mike Delaney, President of Citizens for a Healthy Iowa)

As the new year approaches, many of us resolve to better align our actions with our best selves, by supporting organizations that help to build healthier families and stronger communities, and seeking to make our world a better place. This week, against this backdrop, the Iowa Farm Bureau (IFB) hosts its annual convention in Des Moines.

(for the full report and background go to www.FarmBureauExposed.com

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Branstad Beer - It's All About the Dirty Water

(I saw this ad on cable in the Des Moines area this morning. - promoted by desmoinesdem)

I've had enough.

Gov. Branstad continues to spread misinformation about his record on water quality. The simple fact? He vetoed $20 million in funds that would have improved Iowa's natural resources and protected water quality of our rivers, lakes and streams.

With full disclosure, I'm the Director for Citizens for a Healthy Iowa. We are a non-profit (c4) organized here in Iowa and we work primarily on water quality issues – public education & issue advocacy. More about our new ad, and campaign, after the jump ….

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Why Not Just Feed Babies Arsenic? - Think Progress

The House of Representatives is currently considering a bill that would drastically cut funding for the Environmental Protection Agency and severely limit the agency’s ability to protect human health and the environment.

Known as the 2012 Interior-EPA Appropriations bill (H.R. 2584), it would delay critical clean air rules by more than a year and prevent the EPA from regulating toxic emissions from coal-fired power plants.

Our congressional delegation is generally pretty divided along party lines when it comes to major public health issues such as this – generally, Braley/Loebsack support the independence of the EPA and King/Latham oppose. Boswell is typically a swing vote. More below the fold if you are interested in taking action!

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Muscatine Mother for Clean Air - Stories from Rural Iowa

From time to time I run across editorials, letters to the editor, and other random environmental news that I find interesting.  This piece I found particularly compelling and I wanted to share. It comes from a community activist in Muscatine, IA who is really fighting to improve air quality in Muscatine – and throughout the state. Her name is Michelle Marine and you can read her blog at: Simplify, Live, Love

By: Michelle Marine 

In 2006, my husband and I and our four children moved to his hometown of Wilton in Muscatine County. We've lived in lots of large cities, both in the US and abroad. We chose rural living for a variety of issues, one being for an overall healthier lifestyle. I was saddened to learn that the air quality here in rural Iowa is sometimes worse than in the big cities we lived in the past. I started a blog at Simplify, Live, Love.

The blog focuses on frugal living, homeschooling, grammar, and living green. I became interested in the air quality issue after realizing how badly the air smells at our house in Wilton some days. I researched the issue more in depth when Healthy Child, Healthy World asked for bloggers to blog on air quality.

I was shocked at what I learned about the air quality in Muscatine County. Muscatine County has the highest levels of particulate matter, a hazardous air pollutant. Our residents are exposed to the lowest air quality levels in the state of Iowa. And as we know, many of our friends and neighbors suffer from air-pollution related illnesses, including an unclassifiable upper-respiratory disease physicians have come to call the “Muscatine Crud.”

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Mississippi River Floods -- The Branstad Connection

(State Senator Rob Hogg has been calling for more investment in watershed projects.   - promoted by desmoinesdem)

With floodwaters along the Mississippi River in the southern U.S reaching historic levels it’s time for Iowa to take a leadership role in helping prevent future flooding by investing in watershed improvement programs and conservation in Iowa.

Many people might not know what a watershed is. A watershed is basically a basin defined by highpoints and ridges that descend into lower elevations and stream valleys. A watershed carries water from the land after rain falls and snow melts. Drop by drop, water is channeled into soils, groundwaters, creeks, and streams, making its way to larger rivers and eventually the sea.

According to the EPA:

A watershed is the area of land where all of the water that is under it or drains off of it goes into the same place. John Wesley Powell, scientist geographer, put it best when he said that a watershed is:

“that area of land, a bounded hydrologic system, within which all living things are inextricably linked by their common water course and where, as humans settled, simple logic demanded that they become part of a community.”

Watersheds come in all shapes and sizes. They cross county, state, and national boundaries. In the continental US, there are 2,110 watersheds; including Hawaii Alaska, and Puerto Rico, there are 2,267 watersheds.

This is the connection between watershed and land management practices in Iowa and recent flooding on the Mississippi River. …more after the jump…

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