Environment

Gov. Laura Kelly joined state and local officials in Osawatomie to celebrate improvements to the Flint Hills Trail, which serves hikers and bikers on trails running through five counties in Kansas. (Submitted/Kansas Reflector)

Kansas adds to Flint Hills Trail in Osawatomie for bikers, riders, hikers

BY: - October 7, 2020

TOPEKA — Gov. Laura Kelly joined local officials in Osawatomie to recognize improvements in Miami County to the Flint Hills Trail used by cyclists, pedestrians and equestrians. The 117-mile trail stretches from Osawatomie to Herington and cuts through five counties in east-central Kansas. It is the seventh-longest rail-to-trail in the United States. Flint Hills Trail […]

Rep. Troy Waymaster, left, and Sen. Carolyn McGinn, who chair the House and Senate budget committees, will await revision of state tax revenue estimates in November to assess whether cuts to the State Water Plan can be restored. (Tim Carpenter/Kansas Reflector)

Restoring full $8 million for Kansas water programs harder than turning a faucet

BY: - October 6, 2020

Revision of Kansas tax revenue estimates in November will offer clue as to whether State Water Plan budget cut can be reversed by Legislature, governor.

Gov. Laura Kelly said construction of Inevergy’s new Grain Belt Express transmission line to carry wind-driven electricity to Missouri, Illinois and Indiana can create about 1,000 permanent jobs in Kansas. This image is of Evergy's Flat Ridge Wind Farm near Medicine Lodge. (Submitted/Kansas Reflector)

Gov. Laura Kelly, Invenergy outline economic jolt of electric transmission project

BY: - September 30, 2020

Gov. Laura Kelly, Lt. Gov. Lynn Rogers tout potential of Invenergy's plan for transmission line to carry Kansas wind power to the east.

KU, Haskell and K-State to collaborate on $6 million intermittent stream research project

BY: - September 30, 2020

KSU, Haskell and KU in Kansas will collaborate on $6 million, four-year NSF research project on water-quality issues of intermittent streams.

Deal strikes balance between Quivira Wildlife Refuge, agriculture producers

BY: - September 29, 2020

Officials say a new agreement benefits both a national wildlife refuge and local agriculture producers in central Kansas, and it involves the extraction of several invasive plant species in the area along with water augmentation for a local creek. Water usage at the 22,135-acre Quivira National Wildlife Refuge in Stafford, Rice and Reno counties has […]

The Kansas Legislature's auditors say industrial hemp remains a risky crop but growing expertise and development of markets for the plants fiber, grain and floral parts could generate more than $20 million annually in revenue within several years. (Submitted/Kansas Reflector)

Legislature’s auditors assess economic prospects of Kansas’ fledgling hemp crop

BY: - September 2, 2020

Value of Kansas' hemp crop in 2019 was modest, while Kansas State University is studying potential of using hemp flowers as cattle feed.

State and federal agencies reported the Kansas unemployment rate dropped in November to 3.6%, a reduction from 3.9% in September and October. Joblessness at outset of the COVID-19 pandemic was 12.6% in April 2020. (Tim Carpenter/Kansas Reflector)

EPA targets two southeast Kansas lead smelter sites for Superfund list

BY: - September 2, 2020

The federal Environmental Protection Agency is focusing on two southeast Kansas lead smelting sites for inclusion in the Superfund program.

On Aug. 14, 2020, a landspout tornado developed along the Kansas-Colorado border near the small town of Towner, Colorado. Unusual weather patterns this year have produced historically low numbers of tornadoes across Kansas. (Mike Umscheid)

Kansas seeing historically low number of tornadoes in 2020

BY: - August 29, 2020

Tornadoes and their warnings have been few and far between in Kansas for the majority of 2020, and in one corner of the state a record is poised to be broken if the trend continues through the end of the year. The National Weather Service office in Dodge City has recorded only six tornadoes across […]

Heavy rains were blamed for a rare landslide last year that made access unstable to Coronado Heights Park, near Lindsborg. (Submitted by Neil Croxton to Kansas Reflector)

Historic Kansas attraction recovering from last year’s rare landslide

BY: - August 15, 2020

As a historic Kansas landmark neared its centennial last year, heavy summer rains loosened several layers of earth and triggered a rare three-foot slump in the landscape. Damage at Coronado Heights Park, which sits on a 300-foot sandstone bluff northwest of Lindsborg, made access unstable. The landslide forced cancellation of a 100th anniversary party planned […]

Belinda Sturm, a University of Kansas engineering professor, says a research project involving KU and the Kansas Department of Health and Environment shows testing of wastewater can offer a one-week advance warning of COVID-19 community surges or declines. (Submitted/Kansas Reflector)

Wastewater testing by KU, KDHE offers advance warning of COVID-19 surge

BY: - July 22, 2020

A project involving KU and KDHE shows promise in tracking genetic evidence of COVID-19 in wastewater and offer an early warning to a community.