KJAN Ag/Outdoor

From County extension to conservation to grain prices, we provide lots of information every day on KJAN.  Here is some of that information on the web too!  We hope you find it useful.

Harkin not sure if House can get farm bill done before recess

Ag/Outdoor, News

September 14th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

A procedural move pushed by Iowa Congressman Bruce Braley, a Democrat from Waterloo, to allow the full U-S House to vote on that body’s version of the farm bill moved ahead Thursday. Braley is now working on getting enough signatures on what is called a “discharge petition” to bring it to a vote. Iowa Senator Tom Harkin, says he’s not sure if there is time to get a vote on the House bill and then work out differences in the Senate bill before the fall recess. “I don’t know, probably not, but at least if the House passed it, then you’ve got a bill, you got the Senate (bill), we can meet on it, and then we can come back in the lame duck session and get it done,” Harkin says. He says it is important to at least get the House version passed now.

“If they wait and pass it in November, then it would be problematic,” Harkin says. “But if they pass it now, let staff get to work, do stuff on it, get it ready when we come back, then we can conference the Tuesday after the election, yeah, I think we could get it done.” Harkin a Democrat blames Republicans and Tea Party members for holding up the vote before the election. He was asked if it would be easier to pass after the election.

Harkin says it would be more politically feasible, but more difficult institutionally to pass the bill. “So if you’re looking at the political aspect, I suppose the House leadership wants to punt this until after the election so they don’t bring it out on the floor and have people vote on draconion cuts to the SNAP program and other things like that,” Harkin says. The current farm bill is set to expire on September 30th and the House and Senate are expected to take their fall recess sometime next week.

(Radio Iowa)

Cass Supervisors to discuss tax abatement for Amaizing Energy property

Ag/Outdoor, News

September 13th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

The Cass County Board of Supervisors are scheduled to meet Friday morning (Sept. 14th), in a continuation of their regular Wednesday session. During the 7:30-a.m. meeting in their board room at the Courthouse in Atlantic, the Supervisors will discuss and possibly act on a Tax Abatement or Exemption, for the Amaizing Energy Urban Renewal Area property.

Late last month, Kathy Schowalter with PlanScape Partners made a presentation to the Cass County Board of Supervisors on behalf of Ron Fagen, CEO of Granite Falls, Minnesota-based Fagen, Incorporated, with regard to the possible creation of a 25-million gallon Cellulosic ethanol plant. Schowalter asked the Board of Supervisors on August 31st, to consider local assistance in the form of: a property tax exemption until production begins; 50% property tax exemption/rebate for ten years after production begins; and assistance with applications for State and Federal incentives. Even with an agreement in-place, the permitting process she says will take up to a year once investors are secured, construction on the plant itself would take 18-to 24-months.

Report: Drought is sign of climate change & worse things to come

Ag/Outdoor, Weather

September 13th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

A new report from an environmental watchdog group the says the long drought Iowa’s endured this summer is a clear sign of where the state and region are heading under climate change. Doug Inkley, senior scientist with the National Wildlife Federation, says the heat waves we’ve experienced for months are just the first piece of the puzzle. “We now have a record low amount of ice in the Arctic and we have a record amount of icemelt in Greenland,” Inkley says. “You put all three of these together and global warming is extremely apparent.”

Inkley says some scenarios we’re seeing this summer, including large fish kills reported across Iowa, also lend insight into what wildlife face in the months to come. “We have thousands of fish dying because the water is simply too warm for them,” Inkley says. “Wildlife throughout this coming winter will be stressed because the productivity of the natural foods they eat is way down because of the drought and they could easily starve to death.”

Inkley says the same conditions are contributing to devastating wildfires, crop damage and an influx of destructive pests and the diseases some carry, like West Nile virus. The group’s report says the past 12 months are the hottest ever recorded in the U-S. In terms of financial impact, the report notes the cost of battling wildfires, now about three-billion dollars a year, has tripled since the 1990s.

(Radio Iowa)

USDA Report 09-13-2012

Ag/Outdoor, Podcasts

September 13th, 2012 by Chris Parks

w/ Dave York

Play

Field Fire near I-80 Tuesday evening in Cass County

Ag/Outdoor, News

September 12th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

Firefighters from Atlantic, along with tanker support from Brayton, were able to quickly knock down a field fire Tuesday evening. Atlantic Fire Chief Mark McNees says the call about the fire southeast of the Interstate 80/Highway 71 interchange, came in just after 5-p.m., from Delbert Westphalen, who was working the area with his combine. McNees said Westphalen had completed the end rows when he noticed the fire. He used both fire extinguishers on his combine to try and put out the flames, but with the windy conditions, a six-foot circle had burned out of control, quickly.

McNees said they received some assistance in keeping the flames from spreading, not only from the Brayton Fire Department, but from a local farmer. He happened to be passing by, and was flagged down to have his disc implement used to control the spread of fire, along with another disc implement that was on the scene already. McNees said farmers need to have disc equipment standing by in the event a field fire should occur, and it’s wise to take precautions before they begin to harvest the crops.

He says they’ve been telling people to disc around the planned harvest area, so if flames do erupt, it will keep them within that field and not spread to other fields or property. About 4 ½ acres were lost to the flames. McNees said it appears a spark from the implement hitting a rock may have caused the fire.

Cass County Extension Report 09-12-2012

Ag/Outdoor, Podcasts

September 12th, 2012 by Chris Parks

w/ Kate Olson

Play

No rain for Iowa from Hurricane Isaac, drought to continue

Ag/Outdoor, Weather

September 11th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

Iowa farmers and livestock producers who had hoped to see some relief from the dry weather with a few spin-off rain showers from Hurricane Isaac were left disappointed. None of the rain from the big storm reached our region. U-S-D-A meteorologist Brad Rippey says it appears the long-running drought is going to run a bit longer. Rippey says, “Twenty U.S. states in all in that real core drought area across the Plains and upper Midwest continue to get worse even while we saw some improvement along the southeastern edge of the drought area.”

Hurricane Isaac did bring needed rains to areas of some states, including, Missouri, Illinois and Indiana. Still, Rippey says about two-thirds of the nation is being impacted by the worst drought in decades and the condition of key farmland is steadily deteriorating. Rippey says, “We continue to see every single Plains and Midwestern state with at least 40% of their pastures and range lands rated very poor to poor.” Some forecasters predict the drought will end in October while others say this weather pattern could remain well into spring.

(Radio Iowa)

RED FLAG WARNINGS IN EFFECT TODAY FROM 11-AM TO 9-PM

Ag/Outdoor, Weather

September 11th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

A RED FLAG WARNING REMAINS IN EFFECT FOR THE ENTIRE KJAN LISTENING AREA FROM 11- AM TODAY (TUESDAY) TO 9- PM CDT THIS EVENING FOR EXTREME FIRE CONDITIONS.

SOUTHWEST WINDS OF 20 TO 30 MPH…WITH GUSTS TO 40 MPH CAN BE EXPECTED, ALONG WITH RELATIVE HUMIDITY AS LOW AS 18 TO 22 PERCENT. FIELD CROPS ARE NEARLY CURED AND HAVE BECOME HIGHLY COMBUSTIBLE. IN COMBINATION WITH THE FORECAST CONDITIONS ..THIS WOULD LEAD TO RAPID FIRE GROWTH. IN ADDITION, THE DRYING OF GRASSES IS WELL AHEAD OF SCHEDULE DUE TO THE HOT AND DRY CONDITIONS THIS SUMMER. IF A FIRE STARTS THIS (TUESDAY) AFTERNOON…RAPID FIRE GROWTH WOULD BE POSSIBLE AND IT WOULD BE VERY DIFFICULT TO CONTAIN.

A RED FLAG WARNING MEANS THAT CRITICAL FIRE WEATHER CONDITIONS ARE EITHER OCCURRING NOW…OR WILL SHORTLY. A COMBINATION OF STRONG WINDS…LOW RELATIVE HUMIDITY…AND WARM TEMPERATURES WILL CREATE EXPLOSIVE FIRE GROWTH POTENTIAL.

Corn harvest remains ahead of schedule

Ag/Outdoor, News

September 10th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — The corn harvest continues significantly ahead of schedule in much of the grain belt with 15 percent of the crop out of the fields in the 18 states that produce most of the nation’s corn crop. That’s ahead of the 5 percent normal average for this time of the year. Iowa farmers are reporting 10 percent finished compared with the average of 1 percent. In Nebraska harvest is 12 percent complete compared with the 1 percent average. Missouri is more than half finished when the average is 15 percent. A few soybean farmers are harvesting with 4 percent done nationally. Two percent is the average. Crops were planted earlier this year because of a warm spring. Harvest is moving quickly because crops matured faster than usual in this summer’s heat.

RED FLAG WARNING ISSUED FOR MORE COUNTIES IN WESTERN IA, EFFECTIVE TUESDAY

Ag/Outdoor, News, Weather

September 10th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

COUNTIES: HARRISON-SHELBY-POTTAWATTAMIE-MILLS-MONTGOMERY-FREMONT AND PAGE

339 PM CDT MON SEP 10 2012

RED FLAG WARNING IS IN EFFECT FROM 1 PM TO 7 PM CDT TUESDAY FOR EXTREME FIRE DANGER. THIS REPLACES THE FIRE WEATHER WATCH WHICH HAD BEEN ISSUED PREVIOUSLY. A RED FLAG WARNING MEANS THAT CRITICAL FIRE WEATHER CONDITIONS ARE EITHER OCCURRING NOW…OR WILL SHORTLY. A COMBINATION OF STRONG WINDS…LOW RELATIVE HUMIDITY…AND WARM TEMPERATURES WILL CREATE EXPLOSIVE FIRE GROWTH POTENTIAL.