dead zone


Crop field with runoff
USDA NRCS

To Save Its Soil and Clean Up Its Water, Iowa Needs to Act Fast(er)

, senior analyst, Food and Environment

Iowans have long prized their state’s deep, rich soils and its position as an agricultural powerhouse. In the heart of the Corn Belt, its farmers lead the nation in corn acres planted, and come in second in soybean acres. But there’s a dark side to all that: Decades of intensive, industrial-style production of those two crops—and little else—has decimated Iowa’s soil and fouled its waterways, leaving farmers and communities downstream and across the state vulnerable. Among the many issues state legislators are considering this month in Des Moines, soil health and water quality are arguably among the most urgent. And they need to act fast. Read more >

USDA NRCS
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Heart-shaped chicken nuggets on a tray of fast food

Tyson Foods Wants to Be Our Valentine. Thanks, But No Thanks.

, senior analyst, Food and Environment

In the latest weird 2021 moment,* meat and poultry giant Tyson Foods is running a marketing campaign involving chicken nuggets arranged into freakish bouquets for Valentine’s Day. Here at the Union of Concerned Scientists, we have some thoughts about Tyson’s Valentine offering to the nation: Read more >

Pikist
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Satellite view of Gulf of Mexico

Ask an Expert: Reviving the Gulf of Mexico’s Dead Zone

, senior writer

Speaking to UCS Food and Environment Program economist Rebecca Boehm, about Reviving the Dead Zone, a report released this summer that provides the first comprehensive assessment of the Gulf of Mexico dead zone’s economic impact, and warns the root problem—agricultural nutrient pollution—will likely worsen due to climate change. The dead zone causes as much as $2.4 billion in damage to fisheries and marine habitat every year, the report found, but there are proven ways to clean it up that would benefit farmers and the fishing industry alike. Read more >

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Thomas Millot/Unsplash

Big, Colliding Problems in Gulf and Elsewhere Need Science-Based Solutions Now

, Economist

Hurricane Laura, one of the most intense hurricanes to hit the Gulf in over a century made landfall along the Texas-Louisiana border early this morning. But even before Laura hit today, 2020 has been a hard year for the Gulf. Many communities along our Southern coast face a multitude of big, colliding environmental and public problems. That includes longstanding ones as well as ones new this year. But regardless of when these problems began or how long they have afflicted the Gulf, they can only be adequately addressed with policies that are firmly grounded in science. Read more >

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Southern Foodways Alliance/Flickr

Pollution, Hurricanes, and the Pandemic Spell Trouble for Gulf Shrimp and Seafood Industries

, Economist

Today researchers announced the size of the Gulf of Mexico dead zone, the official measurement NOAA uses to track its size year over year. This comes on the heels of bad news from another NOAA report indicating that the volume of Gulf shrimp landings in June 2020 was the lowest ever recorded.   Read more >

Southern Foodways Alliance/Flickr
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