KJAN Programs

Elevated Fire Danger across parts of western Iowa today

Ag/Outdoor, News, Weather

April 21st, 2014 by Ric Hanson

AREA COUNTIES: SAC-CRAWFORD-CARROLL-
1021 AM CDT MON APR 21 2014

NORTHWEST WINDS ARE EXPECTED TO INCREASE TO 15 TO 25 MPH WITH GUSTS OF 30 MPH DURING THE AFTERNOON. MEANWHILE…A DRIER AIRMASS IS EXPECTED TO MOVE INTO THE STATE WITH RELATIVE HUMIDITY VALUES DROPPING INTO THE UPPER 20S ACROSS AREAS OF NORTHERN AND WESTERN IOWA BY AFTERNOON. THIS WILL LEAD TO ELEVATED FIRE POTENTIAL DURING THE AFTERNOON UNTIL WINDS RELAX AND THE RELATIVE HUMIDITY CLIMBS BY THIS EVENING. ANY OUTDOOR FIRES ACROSS THIS AREA DURING THE AFTERNOON WILL HAVE THE POTENTIAL TO SPREAD RAPIDLY AND BURNING IS DISCOURAGED.

ALSO, A RED FLAG WARNING IS IN EFFECT FOR MONONA COUNTY FROM 1-PM UNTIL 7-PM. CONDITIONS WILL BE FAVORABLE THIS AFTERNOON FOR FIRES TO START EASILY AND SPREAD QUICKLY. ALL OUTDOOR BURNING SHOULD BE AVOIDED.

Backyard and Beyond 04-21-2014

Backyard and Beyond, Podcasts

April 21st, 2014 by Chris Parks

Lavon Eblen speaks with Fern Lindvahl, President of the CCMH Auxiliary, and Linda Marek, Chairperson of the Soup and Salad Luncheon, about that event coming up and more about the organization.

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Shelby County Fire Danger remains “Moderate”

Ag/Outdoor, News, Weather

April 21st, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Shelby County Emergency Management Coordinator Bob Seivert says the Local Fire Danger signs will remain in the “Moderate” category, this week.  Seivert says sunshine and wind quickly dry the dead vegetation, and even with the rains we have had recently the speed with which the drying process occurs is something to be aware of.

Seivert also advises residents to be aware of the potential for severe weather this week. The National Weather Service’s Hazardous Weather Outlook calls for the possibility of strong to severe storms Wednesday night into early Thursday afternoon.

 

Iowa walnut trees face new threat from migrating insect

Ag/Outdoor, News

April 21st, 2014 by Ric Hanson

While Iowans are seeing the first ash trees cut down to slow the spread of the emerald ash borer, yet another invading insect is causing a stir as it could threaten our walnut trees. Robin Pruisner, an entomologist with the Iowa Department of Agriculture, says the pest called the walnut twig beetle is being found in nearby states, but it hasn’t been found in Iowa — yet. “Research is ongoing on how to protect walnut trees,” Pruisner says. “We just don’t have a lot of answers. This is even newer than the emerald ash borer at this point in time.” The walnut twig beetle carries what’s known as “thousand canker disease,” which is deadly to black walnut trees.

There’s been no way found to reverse the disease or to kill the beetle without also killing the trees.  “The geosmithia pathogen is actually very common in our environment and this is just kind of a new cousin of that,” Pruisner says. “The walnut twig beetle is native to the southwest United States and down into Mexico.” For many years, the beetle was only found in states like Arizona, California and New Mexico. Now, the rice grain-sized pest is being found well beyond the southwest, in states as far away as Virginia and Pennsylvania — and closer to home in Ohio, Colorado and Tennessee.

Pruisner suspects the insects are moving such great distances because people are enabling them to hitch long rides.  “Aunt Sally out in Colorado has a walnut tree that dies in her backyard but Cousin Ed here in Iowa would like to make a coffee table out of it,” Pruisner says. “This is the kind of thing that people throw in the back of their truck and they drive to Iowa and they could be inadvertently bringing along with it thousand canker of walnut.”

One way to stop the spread is to only use local firewood in campfires. Iowa ranks sixth in the nation for the production of black walnut, prized for its grain and color and it’s exported all over the world.

(Radio Iowa)

Heartbeat Today 04-21-2014

Heartbeat Today, Podcasts

April 21st, 2014 by Chris Parks

Jim Field speaks with Atlantic Schools Technology Coordinator Roger Warne about the one-to-one initiative.

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Study: Fuels from corn waste not better than gas

Ag/Outdoor

April 21st, 2014 by Ric Hanson

WASHINGTON (AP) – A study paid for by the federal government says biofuels made from the leftovers of harvested corn plants are worse than gasoline for global warming in the short term.  The research published in the journal Nature Climate Change challenges the Obama administration’s conclusions that biofuels are a much cleaner oil alternative and will help fight climate change.  The study is being criticized by the biofuels industry and Obama administration as flawed.

Corn residue is one of the most promising ways to make cellulosic biofuels. Biofuels have struggled to reach the volumes required by law. The administration and biofuel supporters claim biofuels are better for the environment than are gasoline and corn ethanol.  A 2007 law requires that they release 60 percent less carbon than gas to qualify as renewable fuel.

Iowa burn center sees jump in ammonia burns

Ag/Outdoor, News

April 19th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) – The University of Iowa Burn Treatment Center is reporting a higher-than-normal number of patients suffering from anhydrous ammonia burns. The center says it has treated five people in the last two weeks. The center’s medical personnel say they usually only see one or two cases each year. Official say the high number of patients in such a short amount of time is concerning.

Anhydrous ammonia is used legally by farmers as a crop fertilizer, but is often used, too, for the illegal manufacturing of methamphetamine. The colorless, pungent gas can burn the eyes, throat, skin and damage lung tissue at high exposures.

This is Your Nishna Valley 04-18-2014

Podcasts, This is Your Nishna Valley

April 19th, 2014 by Chris Parks

w/ Jim Field and Stacie Linfor

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Iowa’s egg industry is tops in the US and Easter weekend is a bonus

Ag/Outdoor, News

April 19th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Many Iowans will celebrate Easter this weekend by dunking eggs in colored dye and hiding them for young ones to find and place in their baskets. Katie Coyle, spokeswoman for the Iowa Poultry Association, says it’s one the busiest weekends of the year for Iowa’s egg producers.  “We see an increase in egg sales during this time of year because people are decorating them as Easter eggs,” Coyle says. “When people are out purchasing their groceries, we always say grab an extra dozen.”

Coyle says Easter is also the kickoff leading into May which is National Egg Month. Iowa egg producers have some 60-million laying hens producing nearly 15-billion eggs each year. Iowa is the nation’s number-one egg producer, she says, by far.  “Just hands down, there isn’t really any competition,” Coyle says. “The number-two and -three states still don’t produce as many eggs as Iowa combined. It’s a great month for us to get out the message about eggs and the importance of them to the Iowa economy.”

Iowa’s egg industry contributes about two-billion dollars in total sales to the state’s economy and is responsible for nearly eight-thousand jobs. Coyle says eggs are very nutritious and are basically a multi-vitamin in a shell.

(Radio Iowa)

USDA orders farms to report pig virus infections

Ag/Outdoor, News

April 18th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

MILWAUKEE (AP) – The federal government is starting a new program to help monitor and possibly control the spread of a virus that has killed millions of pigs since showing up in the U.S. last year. The porcine epidemic diarrhea virus, believed to be from China, causes severe diarrhea in newborn piglets, who die from dehydration.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture announced Friday it is stepping up efforts by requiring farmers to report infections and labs where farmers send tissue and fecal samples to report positive tests. Farms that suffer an outbreak also will have to participate in a program to help control the spread of the disease

Previously, the USDA and the nation’s pork industry tracked the disease with voluntary reports from the labs.