Environment

Environmental Forecast

Jul 20, 2012

Past generations poured sewage, trash and industrial chemicals into the Milwaukee River.

Most of the direct dumping has ended, but as WUWM Environmental Reporter Susan Bence reports, run-off from the land continues to choke the river, as do occasional sewer overflows.

Wisconsin DNR

The Wisconsin Natural Resources Board voted unanimously yesterday afternoon to adopt the DNR’s recommendations for Wisconsin’s first wolf hunt. The rules the Board set down include a kill quota of 201 wolves, which were recently delisted from Endangered Species Act. The hunt will run from October to February.

The hunt has been controversial enough that more than a hundred people jammed the hearing room in Stevens Point where the Board was meeting, and some 40-plus people testified during the hearing.

The grey wolf is in Wisconsin’s spotlight.

Shortly after the federal government removed the animal from the endangered species list, the state created a wolf hunt to begin this October.

With little time to spare, the DNR designed rules for the first season.

The agency is proposing a harvest of 201 wolves, with some zones more heavily targeted than others.

Tuesday the seven-member Natural Resources Board will vote on the DNR’s proposed rules at a special meeting in Stevens Point.

WUWM Environmental Reporter Susan Bence looks at the polarizing positions the wolf – and its upcoming hunt – are raising.

The City of Milwaukee has joined a club of which no community wants to be a member.

Late last week, officials announced that the Emerald ash borer has infected trees on the city’s northwest side.

WUWM Environmental Reporter Susan Bence met a city forester on the site to learn how Milwaukee has been preparing for the pest.

It has already taken down tens of millions of trees in states to our east as well as in Canada.

It was not entirely “unexpected” news Friday when Milwaukee officials announced conclusively - the Emerald ash borer hit a cluster of trees on the northwest side.

Scientists first spotted the destructive green beetle in Detroit, Michigan in 2002.

President Obama last week signed the transportation bill he hopes will put thousands of construction workers on job sites.

The law also carries some unexpected “environmental” clout.

WUWM Environmental Reporter Susan Bence learned more about what SOME are calling “The Asian Carp Act.”

The only time a LIVE Asian carp was discovered beyond an electric barrier designed to keep the fish out of the Great Lakes was in Lake Calumet in 2010.

But since then, crews have repeatedly discovered evidence of the voracious invasive species’ DNA.

Milwaukee’s Riverwest neighborhood prides itself for a “do-it-yourself attitude” with a bohemian, creative flair. It’s no surprise then, that a movement – called Power Down Week – took hold in Riverwest. Its mission is straightforward – make your carbon footprint as small as you can AND do it with others. The third annual power down starts this weekend, and WUWM Environmental Reporter Susan Bence caught up with some of its organizers earlier this week as they prepared for another Riverwest neighborhood tradition – the Gordon Park 4th of July celebration.

UW-Milwaukee has taken another step towards increasing the region's prominence as a center for freshwater research. Jenny Kehl starts work this week as the director for the UWM Center for Water Policy. Kehl comes to Milwaukee from Rutgers University in New Jersey, where she taught at the graduate level in public policy and political science. The position is part of UWM's graduate-level School of Freshwater Sciences.

Wisconsin residents will be looking for relief from blistering heat over the next couple of days.

Forecasters say temperatures could reach the “triple digits”.

WUWM Environmental Reporter Susan Bence looked into a couple of “non human” ecosystems to see how they might cope with this rough patch of weather.

People crowded onto street in Walker's Point Thursday night, to celebrate the official opening of the new Clock Shadow Building.

Attendees dug into freshly scooped ice cream and fresh cheese curds – both produced on site.

WUWM Environmental Reporter Susan Bence stepped into the four-story structure to explore it unique elements.

Half the building that now stands atop a remediated brown field is made of repurposed material.

Land preservation runs deep in the psyche of the Badger State, from Aldo Leopold to Gaylord Nelson.

Just north of Milwaukee, Ozaukee County is home to nearly 40 preserved parcels, but a group of volunteers fear these treasures remain “hidden” even to people who live nearby.

Scott Walker is not taking much time to drink in the sweetness of success after surviving a contentious recall campaign.

Early Wednesday, the Governor visited a small company in Oak Creek before heading to his office in Madison.

WUWM Environmental Reporter Susan Bence stopped at the family-owned manufacturer to learn if Walker’s immediate plans are environmentally related.

A Wisconsin photographer will soon set out on his latest project - but it doesn't involve apertures, zoom lenses, or F-stops. Andy Stenz of Waukesha will leave on Memorial Day to walk across Wisconsin in an effort to raise money for and awareness of the plight of people around the water who lack ready access to clean water.

Eddee Daniel

The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources hopes to lure visitors to the state’s natural spaces this weekend by offering open houses and “license-free” fishing.

The Milwaukee County Parks system is taking a different approach to highlighting its green spaces.

It will host a party Saturday at McKinley Park, kicking-off the parks system’s 105th anniversary.

The event will also launch a “passport” program designed to focus attention on the Oak Leaf Trail. It carries bikers and hikers to numerous county parks.

WUWM Environmental Reporter Susan Bence hit a piece of the trail to witness one person’s approach to selling a parks system.

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