Households of color continue to be affected at disproportionate rates during the COVID-19 pandemic, with utility disconnections, evictions and debt higher in their communities than in their white counterparts.
The lawsuit has sparked interest on how the switch from coal to natural gas will have a significant effect on the air quality and the health of the surrounding community in Indianapolis. Coal-fired power plants such as IPL have been contributing to a nationwide issue of air pollution.
Educating for Environmental Change, an Environmental Resilience Institute-supported program to help Indiana educators teach climate change in the classroom, recently received Indiana’s top environmental award, the Governor’s Award for Environmental Excellence, for “extraordinary initiatives in protecting the environment.”
IU's statewide survey finds area residents making some concessions to climate.
Birds tweet, squawk, chirp, hoot, cluck, and screech to communicate with each other. Some birds have found another way to talk, though: they make sounds by fluttering their feathers or smacking their wings together really fast. Scientists just discovered another species that makes sounds with its feathers, a bird from the American tropics called the Fork-tailed Flycatcher.
Sept. 29 and 30, the Indiana University Rural Conference will bring together rural residents and leaders with IU faculty, researchers, staff, and students in a virtual forum to address some of Indiana's greatest challenges and opportunities.
Research suggests in-person classes led to thousands of additional cases each day in the U.S.
On Sept. 11, In This Climate podcast aired an interview with IU Professor Emeritus Scott Russell Sanders, who touched on his Midwest upbringing, his experience of ecological grief, and his hope for humanity.
Residents in metro areas across Indiana support initiatives to mitigate the impact of climate change, despite varying levels of belief in its existence, according to a new series of Indiana University reports.
The historically red state of Indiana has long had an eco-not-so-friendly reputation. But compared to just three years ago, more Hoosiers now cite climate change as one of the more serious problems facing our world today — and one that needs to be addressed.
Northwest Indiana communities may have the opportunity to participate, at little cost, in an innovative Indiana University program aimed at identifying and reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
President Donald Trump's rollback of Obama-era climate regulations will cause the United States to pump an extra 1.8 billion tons of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere between now and 2035, at a time when scientists say the world needs to slash its carbon pollution dramatically to avoid catastrophe, researchers said Thursday.
Long-distance animal migrations can trigger relapse of dormant infections, influencing when and where infection risk peaks, according to a new paper in Proceedings of the Royal Society B.
A recent Indiana University survey taken last year shows 77% of participating Northwest Indiana residents believed climate change is happening, slightly higher than 75% across Indiana.
How much more are you disinfecting? Extra chemicals can mean extra residue in your home. We look at new research from Indiana University that compares dust samples taken from homes before and after the pandemic.
Racism in medicine, including through forced vaccinations, has created skepticism toward public health campaigns.
The earth's climate and weather patterns are growing wilder, and ordinary citizens are feeling their effects. That's according to about 75% of Hoosier residents who believe climate change is happening, and many have taken steps in their personal lives to deal with those changes. A majority of Hoosiers responding also support public funding to mitigate the effects of climate change if the cost is borne either by wealthier residents or by industries that have the greatest direct responsibility for greenhouse gas emissions.
It’s been said that change is the only constant in life. Now users of the Hoosier Resilience Index (HRI), an online tool to help Indiana local governments and residents understand how their communities are vulnerable to climate change, can view recent environmental changes in near real-time.
Earlier this year a paper published by researchers in Indiana University’s Earth and Atmospheric Sciences Department added new context to a significant yet often overlooked river event: avulsions.
Residents of Evansville are less likely to believe the climate is changing, and if it is, that humans are the cause, when compared to most of the rest of the state, according to an Indiana University survey.
You’ve probably heard that flying is harming the planet, but is driving is any better? Both modes of transportation contribute to greenhouse gasses, exacerbating the current climate crisis. The answer to whether one method is worse for the environment is…complicated.
The Hoosier Resilience Index (HRI) is created in part with local governments and decision-makers in mind, but it is really a tool for any interested and concerned person to look at. There is an additional link on the HRI website to a fantastic piece of research into Hoosier attitudes about climate change, the Hoosier Life Survey Opinion Map.
Reporter Mitch Legan got together with a group of local experts including Indiana University epidemiologist Ana Bento, IU Health infectious disease Dr. Tom Hrisomalos and Graham McKeen, IU’s assistant director of public and environmental health, for a Zoom call to discuss what that means, why that is and what we’ve learned about the coronavirus.
Morgan County joins Indianapolis and Muncie in meeting some of its air quality goals this year. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, the county now meets the standard for sulfur dioxide — a toxic gas that can make it more difficult to breathe and, in some cases, can be life threatening.
Recently, the city of Evansville has begun work on a Climate Action Plan (CAP), headed up by Indiana University Environmental Resilience Institute representative Carolyn Townsend and Timothy Weir, administrator, Commission on Homelessness for Evansville and Vanderburgh County. This strategic plan is set to outline how to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to mitigate climate change.
A majority of Hoosiers, regardless of political party, support climate change policies such as planting trees to reduce risks from flooding and heat waves or increasing funding for emergency management services — even if they don't believe climate change is actually happening.
While a modernization of NEPA was necessary, there is a worry the “streamlined” process could lead to cutting environmental corners.
Municipal leaders and concerned residents from around Indiana met virtually to learn how climate change is affecting the state and what can be done to lessen future damage from related factors such as higher temperatures and increased rainfall.
Indiana University researchers are using a specially equipped drone this summer to better understand how two dam failures in Michigan drastically altered the local landscape.
Now, the beginning of September looms as yet another deadline as utility companies resume cutting power to customers who have fallen behind on their bills. In some states, moratoriums preventing them from doing so are ending, and in other states, utility company pledges to keep customers connected are winding down. Residents in Ohio, Florida, Maryland, Indiana, and Illinois are all at risk of shutoffs in early September; shutoffs can resume in late September or October in North Carolina,Tennessee and Texas.
The last day of August has arrived, meaning the swan song of meteorological summer 2020 is here too. As has been the tradition with everything 2020, this summer generated many headlines, from dozens of 90 degree days to a near-record long dry streak in South Bend.
How good do you think you are at picking the best ways to reduce your emissions? Take this mini-quiz based on the study and see if your guesses fall inside the range of realistic answers.
The Environmental Resilience Institute and the Integrated Program in the Environment are teaming up this fall to present a series of lunch-hour talks centering environmental and climate resilience issues.
Several factors, including wind patterns over Lake Michigan that push ozone back “downstream” toward Michigan City and LaPorte County, help to explain why it has Indiana’s worst smog, experts say.
A new series of Hoosier Life Survey reports can help local leaders and residents in Indiana's major metro areas get a sense of what their neighbors think about the changing environment, how they are preparing, and what resilience policies they support.
According to a study by Indiana University, a lot of the people who have lost jobs during the pandemic are the same ones who had trouble paying their bills before the crisis — low-income, elderly, African American, and Latino residents.
To kick off its second season, In This Climate podcast is shining a spotlight on land defenders, people willing to risk their lives to protect Indigenous land rights and biodiversity from the interests of big business.
When Hoosiers run out of meaningful things to say, they resort to the weather. The familiar cliches at least give us something that—unlike politics—we can all agree on.
Ana Bento, assistant professor of epidemiology and biostats at the IU School of Health-Bloomington, is helping to steer national strategies and policies on school’s decisions to close and reopen due to COVID-19 as a member of new advisory group through the World Health Organization.
This summer, Environmental Resilience Institute (ERI) researchers and citizen scientists at the Kent Farm Research Station east of Bloomington broke a noteworthy bird barrier, capturing their 1000th avian specimen—a white-eyed vireo—in the name of science.
More than 282,500 Indiana homes, businesses and other structures are at substantial risk of flooding, about 67 percent more than the government currently estimates, according to a recent study.
As extreme heat increases throughout the Midwest, communities will face fewer days where we don't need heating or cooling to be comfortable.
Our bitterly divided federal government has produced little bipartisan legislation recently, so it’s encouraging to see the “Growing Climate Solutions Act” by a bipartisan group of senators, including Indiana Sen. Mike Braun. A bipartisan House version (five Republicans and five Democrats) was recently introduced. These are very important steps in America’s response to the public health and economic threats of our changing climate.
Indiana University President Michael A. McRobbie will step down in June 2021 as part of his planned retirement, after 14 years as president and 24 years in senior positions at one of the nation’s top public research universities. During his tenure, IU has been recognized for its leadership across a wide range of key areas, including student success, research and scholarly excellence, community engagement, international education, health sciences training and research, and economic development for all of Indiana.
Summers at the Environmental Resilience Institute (ERI) have typically been a time of face-to-face meetings and events designed to connect Indiana youth, teachers, local governments, and others to environmental change experts and resources. The COVID-19 pandemic, however, forced ERI staff and affiliates to quickly adapt programming to a new reality of physical distancing and online interaction.
A new documentary produced by the Indiana Environmental Reporter (IER) has been selected for the 2020 Indy Film Festival. “In the Water,” written and produced by IER journalist Beth Edwards, explores Indiana’s utility industry and the environmental hazards of storing coal ash, a toxic byproduct of burning coal.
As the 2020 Atlantic hurricane season brings storms such as Hurricane Hanna to the shores of Mexico, the country has a new source of disaster response information and analysis to draw upon thanks to the work of students at Indiana University Bloomington and IUPUI.
For the past three years, Indiana teachers have converged on IU’s Bloomington campus to sharpen their curriculum on climate science and environmental change. With COVID-19 making that impossible this summer, organizers of the Educating for Environmental Change (EfEC) Summer Science Institute brought the workshops to the teachers instead, adapting the two three-day events for an online forum.
In recent months, the pandemic shut down industries and spiked unemployment rates as high as 17.5%, all while forcing residents into their homes for weeks on end, using up more energy.
The climate is changing in Indiana, but how are local governments responding? This question was the impetus for a research project conducted by a team of students led by IU professor of political science William Bianco in collaboration with the Environmental Resilience Institute (ERI) and the Center for Rural Engagement.
Analysis of IU Hoosier Life Survey responses finds more Hoosiers of color believe climate change is happening and presents a risk than white Hoosiers.
Despite the drop off in vehicle traffic, the number of ozone Air Quality Action Days in Indiana has not decreased this year. The number of days is actually similar to three of the four previous years.
Several months into the COVID-19 pandemic crisis, lower-income families are struggling to pay their energy bills. That’s a big concern during extreme events like summer heat waves, which can be deadly – especially for elderly people, young children, people of color and the poor.
A Democrat bill being introduced Wednesday would give the EPA up to four months to require monitoring of ethylene oxide and other cancer-causing toxic air pollutants at the fencelines of chemical manufacturing plants.
A combination of expiring power shut-off moratoriums and supplemental unemployment benefits could result in an energy crisis during the health crisis.
The Environmental Protection Agency’s Inspector General has opened an investigation into its own agency’s role in the Trump administration’s replacement of an Obama-era rule that curbed greenhouse gas emissions in cars.
An annual leadership summit on climate change that was to bring elected officials from across the state to Evansville this summer will instead be held online.
After weeks of virtual public town hall and stakeholder meetings, the Evansville Climate Action Plan is beginning to take shape.
Indianapolis' large downtown fireworks display might have been canceled this year, but in many Indy neighborhoods and other local cities, the show went on — and the fireworks went off. In some cases, the sky was filled with smoke, which can make it harder to breathe, especially for individuals with asthma and other respiratory conditions.
Extreme heat leads to more deaths than any other weather hazard in the US. As heat waves become more frequent and intense due to climate change, it will become increasingly important for local governments to develop plans for vulnerable community members.
No American corporation signed more deals than Facebook to buy electricity generated by wind and solar in 2019, but when it comes to the challenge of curtailing climate misinformation on Facebook, Zuckerberg and his company have been silent.
A new study co-authored by Travis O’Brien, an assistant professor in IU’s Department of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences, highlights the importance of regional climate models for accurate and cost-effective projections of future climate conditions. The study also highlights how regional climate models can benefit stakeholders and policymakers in their response to a changing climate.
Systemic racism and climate change may seem like two unrelated issues, but, according to ERI Research Fellow Elizabeth Grennan Browning, an environmental historian, “the first step to addressing climate change requires addressing systemic racism.”
In recognition of their outstanding contributions to higher education, five business and finance leaders and one university have received 2020 NACUBO Awards from the National Association of College and University Business Officers.
The Environmental Protection Agency plans to pass on another opportunity to tighten air pollution standards. In April, the agency proposed not changing the standards for particle pollution. It announced on Monday it also doesn’t plan to tighten the standards for ozone — commonly known as smog.
High unemployment, stay at home orders and rising temperatures due to climate change are fueling energy insecurity and furthering the need for assistance.
Findings from the Hoosier Life Survey, a statewide survey on environmental attitudes conducted by Indiana University’s Environmental Resilience Institute, show that race also plays a role in Hoosiers’ perceptions and vulnerabilities to climate change.
Trump’s EPA is expected to propose a new rule declaring burning biomass to be carbon neutral, as industry looks to expand its domestic markets. Scientists say it's not that simple.
Eva Allen was recently named a board member for the National Organization of Research Development Professionals.
Researchers found that millions more Americans are threatened by flooding than suggested by government estimates.
Governors last month started to “press pause” on the next phases of their reopenings as Covid-19 cases picked back up. Now, in certain hot spots, they are starting to roll back some of the allowances they’d granted. Will it be enough?
The presence of ticks in residential areas in Indiana is on the rise, according to research led by an assistant professor at Indiana University’s School of Public Health.
Fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic has led to unpaid bills and energy shutoffs in many vulnerable US households. Indiana University researchers warn we need to act now to avoid yet another health emergency.
Scientific and religious communities have come together in classrooms, houses of worship and online through a number of inclusive outreach efforts supported by AAAS’ Dialogue on Science, Ethics and Religion program.
The City of Elkhart, through the work of Elkhart Environmental Center staff, and along with broad support and input from city staff and residents, will spend the next several months developing a climate action plan to reduce community greenhouse gas emissions.
A new U.S. government management plan unveiled Friday clears the way for coal mining and oil and gas drilling on land that used to be off limits as part of a sprawling national monument in Utah before President Donald Trump downsized the protected area two years ago.
This week, an IU graduate student joined the City of Goshen remotely as a summer extern, working with the Indiana Sustainability Development Program to help Goshen create a climate action plan.
Ana Bento, IU professor of public health and biology, says studies on the impact of COVID-19 on children are encouraging, but limited.
The British Ecological Society (BES) announced that Daniel Becker, postdoctoral fellow at Indiana University, has been awarded the Sidnie Manton Award for the best review article in Journal of Animal Ecology by an early career researcher.
Since being sworn into office in 2017, the Trump administration has initiated roll backs on more than 100 policies aimed at protecting the environment. Here's what it's done to the agency.
To help organizational leaders make the case for preparedness projects, two Indiana experts shared advice and resources that help highlight the need for resilience investment during ERI’s June 10 webinar.
After the completion of an inventory of greenhouse gas emissions, Town of Zionsville announced officials announced they will spend the rest of 2020 developing a climate action plan to increase sustainability efforts and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
Researchers at IU and IUPUI are working in multiple ways to protect public health.
Indiana Environmental Reporter journalists Beth Edwards and Enrique Saenz recently garnered national and state awards for their reporting on environmental issues affecting Hoosiers.
The City of Evansville has announced that it’s developing a Climate Action Plan (CAP) with the Indiana University Environmental Resilience Institute.
A 2019 paper by ERI affiliate Rob Fishman was recently named one of the 15 best environmental law articles of the year by the Land Use and Environmental Review, an annual compilation of the best scholarship in the field.
Energy insecurity, the inability to pay an energy bill, has long been a problem among low-income households in the United States. But a new survey from the Indiana University O'Neill School of Public and Environmental Affairs has found that COVID-19 is having a significant impact on an already vulnerable population, and is likely to send new households into it.
Ranjan Muthukrishnan of the Environmental Resilience Institute continues to work at the leading edge of research on species plasticity using high performance computer (HPC) simulations. His recent work, in collaboration with Lauren L. Sullivan, Allison K. Shaw, and James D. Forrester, takes a new look at how species are able to coexist in ecosystems without excluding each other, and how that can help ecosystems become more diverse.
Donald Trump's administration has successfully rolled back, or taken steps to weaken, nearly 100 environmental rules and regulations since the president entered the Oval Office in 2016.
A letter from the ERI director regarding ERI's commitment to social and environmental justice.
Some of the country’s most polluting industries have flooded state regulators with requests to ease environmental regulations, according to an NPR review of hundreds of state environmental records.
The Indiana University Environmental Resilience Institute is working to compile a statewide urban forest map. They want to help cities close the gaps in tree cover so everyone can benefit.
A recent IU survey report found that Hoosiers’ views on environmental issues usually stem from political affiliations. The report also suggests Hoosiers are more likely to agree with climate change solutions than agree on whether or not it is a significant or existent issue.
Solar geoengineering proposals will weaken extratropical storm tracks in both hemispheres, scientists find.
As Hoosiers cast their ballots in the June 2 Indiana primary, new survey results from Indiana University's Environmental Resilience Institute show Republicans, Democrats, and independents in the state agree much more on the solutions to address climate change than they do on the issue itself.
What do bird populations, winter sports, and brewing have in common? They’re all impacted by climate change. In fact, as the recently concluded first season of the In This Climate (ITC) podcast demonstrates, there is practically no species, hobby, or beverage that is not affected by the global crisis.
Andrea Webster, implementation manager for the IU Environmental Resilience Institute, received one of a handful of Campus Catalyst Awards at Indiana University this year. Webster, an IU Bloomington employee, received the Staff Innovation Award.
In recent decades, disease outbreaks caused by the transmission of pathogens from animals to humans, such as COVID-19, have occurred with increasing frequency. Is climate change contributing to this problem?
As people spend more time outside because of social distancing, tick season is underway. Ticks can spread diseases like Lyme disease and Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever. An Indiana University professor says people need to take extra care — even in their yards.
As Hoosiers take shelter from COVID-19, it’s also important to prepare for other threats that visit our communities each spring in the form of flooding and tornadoes. Dealing with severe weather disasters is challenging in the best of times, but with healthcare workers and first responders stretched thin, appropriate planning takes on new importance today.
Earlier this year, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) doused a smoldering debate over whether to extend the time wood stove manufacturers have to comply with updated pollution control standards. COVID-19, however, presented industry with just the cover needed to request that outdated regulations remain in place.
Americans' interest in seeking information about the novel coronavirus online spiked the day after the first case of COVID-19 was announced in their state but decreased back to baseline levels in less than two weeks, according to a study by researchers at Indiana University.
We hear a lot about the impacts of climate change in far-flung corners of the world. We are aware of the dangers of flooding along the US coastline. But what about the Midwest?
Researchers at IUPUI say there may be a silver lining to the coronavirus pandemic. Early research shows they are already seeing the effects of limited travel and mobility.
A new study co-authored by ERI affiliates John Baeten and Rebecca Lave describes a novel mapping technique used by the researchers to reconstruct and analyze the Lower Wabash River floodplain. The results better capture how human activity has altered the river dating back to 1914 and can be applied to help restore wetlands or other ecological features.
Two months after rejecting the wood stove industry's bid for regulatory relief, EPA has changed course, accompanied by an unusual written pledge to temporarily downplay enforcement of stricter emission standards that took effect Saturday.
As the COVID-19 pandemic drags into the heart of spring, more Americans are turning to the outdoors to lift their spirits. While activities like birdwatching, hiking, or gardening can help ease the anxiety surrounding one infectious disease, it potentially places people at risk of being exposed to others, such as those transmitted by ticks.
ERI Affiliate Shahzeen Attari published a paper earlier this year that examined how people understand the energy system in the United States and what they hoped it would look like in 2050. She and her team of researchers found that both liberals and conservatives expect the energy system of the future will be dominated by renewable sources, such as solar and wind.
In 2019, the Environmental Resilience Institute (ERI) launched the Resilience Cohort to help local governments in Indiana measure greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Now, a report summarizing the results of the program, including 19 community-wide GHG inventories and nine local government operations inventories across the 14 communities, is available to view.
While saving human lives and re-booting the economy are two utmost priorities for governments to consider when developing their post-Covid-19 Stimulus Package, they must not forget Nature.
By 2030, Indianapolis may need to generate up to 20% more electricity in the summer months based on a worst-case global warming scenario, researchers said in a recent report. In a best-case scenario, the need may be closer to a 12% increase among the June to September months.
Indiana University professors Eduardo Brondizio and Winnifred Sullivan have been elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Sullivan is a provost professor in the Department of Religious Studies, director of the Center for Religion and the Human and an affiliated professor in the Mauer School of Law. Brondizio is a distinguished professor in the Department of Anthropology and an adjunct professor in the Department of Geography, both in the College of Arts and Sciences, and in the O'Neill School of Public and Environmental Affairs.
ERI Implementation Manager Andrea Webster has been awarded the Staff Innovation Award for outstanding contributions and achievements in advancing campus sustainability initiatives addressing sustainability challenges with overlapping and complex ecological, social, and economic dimensions at Indiana Univerisity Bloomington.
Energy connects to many important issues, including climate change, jobs and economic growth, equity and social justice, and international relations. It would be easy to assume that America’s energy future is a highly polarized topic, especially when the Trump administration is clashing with many states led by Democrats over energy policies. However, in a nationwide online survey, we recently found that broad support exists across the political spectrum for a future powered mostly by renewable energy sources. Our work highlights a consensus around the idea that the United States needs to move its entire energy system away from fossil fuels to low-carbon energy sources.
Thirty five million people get their drinking water from one of the Great Lakes. For years, these glacial reservoirs have been a reliable, safe source of water. But in 2017, the City of Toledo, Ohio had to tell its residents not to drink or even boil water coming from the city taps. The culprit: an enormous algae bloom in Lake Erie that overwhelmed Toledo’s water intake.
While social distancing measures have helped the U.S. ‘flatten the curve,’ they have presented a formidable challenge to vulnerable groups who cannot afford to lose their jobs and quarantine at home. With millions of Americans out of work and unable to pay their utilities—particularly their electric bills— the resulting energy insecurity will have longstanding and negative health effects across the nation unless urgent action is taken, according to a new article in Nature Energy
Learn about a new survey that shows 75% of Hoosiers believe climate change is happening.
Some parts of Indiana that have struggled with pollution are now meeting federal air quality standards. That’s according to three years of data from state and federal environmental agencies. Officials with the Environmental Protection Agency say that’s good news for people with asthma and other lung conditions.
The Environmental Resilience Institute hosted its second data summit on Friday, April 24, giving affiliated researchers a platform to share data-intensive work across multiple disciplines. The online meeting included presentations on Indiana attitudes toward environmental change, topography data captured by drones, and earth satellite imagery.
Janet McCabe has been a tireless advocate for public health, clean air and the environment, formerly as an official in the Environmental Protection Agency before her dual roles as professor of practice at IU McKinney and as director of the IU Environmental Resilience Institute. A go-to expert on environmental issues, she recently has been a leading advocate for Hoosier children impacted by lead poisoning and has been a mentor for the next generation of attorneys with a passion for public service.
EPA's emergency rule issued this month that cited the coronavirus pandemic to temporarily ease requirements to check real-world pollution emitted by power plants had originally called for a broader and potentially permanent rollback. The version released by EPA — which was changed after a White House review — has drawn praise from environmental advocates who have typically been critical of the Trump administration's moves. But that would not have been the case with EPA's original plan.
“Do Not Drink/Do Not Boil” is not what anyone wants to hear about their city’s tap water. But the combined effects of climate change and degraded water quality could make such warnings more frequent across the Great Lakes region.
Indiana University researchers have released results from the first comprehensive study of how COVID-19 mitigation policies affect measures of individual movement and contact in the United States. The results indicate that government mandates that happened late in the sequence of events like stay-at-home orders have very little impact on voluntary quarantine compared to early state actions of a more informational nature such as emergency declarations, and other state and local news.
The Environmental Protection Agency recently announced a change that removes the legal foundation for regulations on mercury and other toxins emitted from coal- and oil-fired power plants. The change, some experts worry, might set a precedent for rolling back pollution standards that have improved air quality in the Great Lakes area.
The Henry Darcy Distinguished Lecture Series in Groundwater Science fosters interest and excellence in groundwater science and technology. It was established in 1986 and named in in honor of Henry Darcy of France for his 1856 investigations that established the physical basis upon which groundwater hydrogeology has been studied ever since.
The coronavirus pandemic is likely to be followed by even more deadly and destructive disease outbreaks unless their root cause – the rampant destruction of the natural world – is rapidly halted, the world’s leading biodiversity experts have warned.
The coronavirus pandemic is amplifying the debate over the relevance of individual behavior in fighting climate change.
Most Hoosiers weren’t worried about an infectious disease outbreak before COVID-19. That was one of several findings from a recent Indiana University survey of Indiana residents.
The garage is humming with the sounds of machinery and ventilation, just a few decibels above normal on an otherwise quiet street. It’s Easter Sunday, and Adam Ward is behind a laser cutter—stabilized on two closet doors serving as makeshift tables—that is churning out plastic face shield after face shield for local health care workers.
Students and researchers at IUPUI are collecting people's personal stories right now for an oral history project about the experiences of COVID-19.
Wednesday is the 50th Earth Day. To mark the occasion, the Hoosier Environmental Council hosted a roundtable discussion with three environmental pioneers who once worked at the Indiana Department of Environmental Management.
The same spirit that now forces us to work together to address the COVID-19 pandemic can be harnessed to address the challenge of climate change.
As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to affect daily life in Indiana, a major new survey from Indiana University's Environmental Resilience Institute reveals that, as recently as December 2019, only 1 out of 5 Hoosiers anticipated being affected by a major disease outbreak this decade.
Inherent uncertainties make climate modeling an easy target for the president and others who downplay the impact of COVID-19 or deny global warming.
Elizabeth Grennan Browning and the Research Fellows of the Indiana University Environmental Resilience Institute offer three key features of resilience that deserve deeper understanding and greater public commitment in response to the unprecedented moment of environmental crisis.
A growing number of prognosticators expect that global carbon dioxide emissions could fall 5% this year as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, amounting to the largest annual reduction on record. But climate researchers say there is little reason for celebration, for people or the planet.
By 2030, Indianapolis may need to generate up to 20% more electricity in the summer months based on a worst-case global warming scenario, researchers said in a recent report.
The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced that it is not “appropriate and necessary” to regulate emissions of mercury and other hazardous air pollutants from coal- and oil-fired power plants.
The Trump administration on Thursday weakened regulations on the release of mercury and other toxic metals from oil and coal-fired power plants, another step toward rolling back health protections in the middle of a pandemic.
To understand the migration patterns of local robins, Alex Jahn has begun using tiny GPS harnesses—little bird “backpacks”—to gather data on their movements.
Experts at an online policy dialogue on Monday agreed that the air quality across the world has improved due to lockdowns amidst the novel coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic and stressed the need for regional cooperation to maintain the air quality in future by sharing data.
With the 50th anniversary of Earth Day approaching on April 22, Indiana University's Environmental Resilience Institute has named its annual list of Hoosier Resilience Heroes, recognizing individuals and groups statewide for their efforts to prepare Hoosiers for climate change and promote safe, healthy communities.
Americans staying home to help flatten the curve of COVID-19 may have found themselves asking a simple question: how can I be more sustainable during these uncertain times? For many, that answer is gardening.
While a lack of rain causes many water scarcities, climate change will most likely bring a different kind of aridity to the Wabash River Basin that occupies most of Indiana. In a few decades, Hoosiers will likely experience rain-filled droughts.
Last December, the outbreak of COVID-19 started as a localized event but quickly spread globally because of lapses in surveillance and preparedness. In this sense, the current pandemic reflects many disasters—such as the oil well blowout on Deepwater Horizon and the aftermath of the 2011 Tohoku earthquake and tsunami—which typically begin as singular events of limited harm but through a cascade of human and systemic errors end up having catastrophic impacts.
As the novel coronavirus spreads across Central Indiana, Hoosiers are holed up in their homes to wait out the pandemic. And, much like other cities across the world, this has created a particular environmental benefit: Air quality has improved.
Indiana's environmental agency may relax environmental enforcement for industries across the state, citing the difficulties caused by the coronavirus pandemic. But critics of this policy change — and a similar one at the federal level — fear it has the potential to do more harm than good.
Reversing a long-standing interpretation of its own regulations, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has issued "guidance" to its regional offices and states and seeks public comment on its intent to ease air-pollution permit rules for facility construction under the federal Clean Air Act.
Reforestation has been shown to cool surface temperatures, and a novel study suggests it may also reduce air temperature up to several stories above the ground.
New low-cost monitoring and mapping techniques can identify multiple pollution sources and reduce related human disease and death.
Local governments need access to relevant data and resources to plan for climate change. That’s why the Environmental Resilience Institute launched the ERI Toolkit (ERIT) in 2018. Since then, ERIT has been updated and expanded to include even more relevant planning information for decision-makers in Indiana and the Midwest.
Rev. Gladden is working under the auspices of the IUPUI Arts & Humanities Institute (IAHI) to make inroads into Indianapolis communities through its interdisciplinary research program — called the Anthropocene Household Project— led by IAHI director Jason Kelly. It's part of the Prepared for Environmental Change Grand Challenges Initiative at Indiana University.
Both sides of the political spectrum recognize a need to reduce American dependence on carbon-based energy sources, but how the nation does so remains a divisive issue, a new study from Indiana University researchers has found.
Following a record-long 35-day government shutdown early last year, President Donald Trump's administration was already running short on time to finish high-priority environmental rollbacks before the November 2020 elections. Now the coronavirus outbreak that is sweeping across the nation is also threatening to derail some of the most important pieces of Trump's deregulatory environmental agenda by causing workforce disruptions and court delays.
The proposed rules would be harmful to any person who has benefitted from the cleaner air and water and the government accountability that NEPA has so powerfully advanced. Which is to say, everyone.
To fulfill its charge of preparing Hoosiers for worsening climate change, IU’s Environmental Resilience Institute focuses on six goals: predicting, measuring, motivating, advising, deploying and communicating. The Media School is a key player in the execution of the final goal: communicating. Its initiatives are two-fold: conducting scholarly research on environmental communication and increasing the quantity of environmental reporting in Indiana.
A new study co-authored by Environmental Resilience Institute Fellows Tara Smiley and Pascal Title highlights some of the regional climatic and land use challenges facing animals and ecosystems in North America.
The Trump administration is using the threat of withholding federal money to force communities threatened by climate change-induced flooding to evict homeowners living in flood zones.
In an effort to educate the public about the growing effects of climate change on the local population ahead of the city’s creating a climate plan, Goshen’s Department of Environmental Resilience asked an expert from Purdue University to present findings during the agency’s most recent program.
Indiana environmental regulators have approved a toxic polluting facility in southern Indiana that at least a dozen other states would have either denied or required additional controls.
A new online tool is helping towns in Indiana see how climate change will affect them.
Eleven Indiana cities will develop plans in 2020 to address greenhouse gas emissions as part of the next phase of Indiana University's Resilience Cohort program.
The Environmental Resilience Institute Toolkit was featured in the February Global Environmental Health newsletter from the National Institute of Environmental Health about web-based systems that can help local governments prepare for climate change.
ERI director Janet McCabe and ERI environmental historian fellow Elizabeth Grennan Browning testified to the Indiana Advisory Committee to the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights about the state’s plans to respond to lead poisoning problems and how barriers like environmental racism have slowed that response.
In a new study, a team led by Irene Newton showed that a bacterium< can inhibit the growth of two common fungal pathogens that infect 70 percent of all known insect species.
Indiana University's Janet McCabe, a professor of practice at the McKinney School of Law, and Elizabeth Grennan Browning, an IU environmental historian fellow, will testify at a Feb. 27 public briefing on lead exposure in Indiana.
Jet fuel from a fiery tanker explosion in Indianapolis has trickled into Pleasant Run Creek, sparking concerns from nearby residents about the effects on wildlife and water quality.
Since 2017, science teachers from across Indiana have been traveling to the Indiana University Bloomington campus to attend workshops on environmental change and its impact on communities.
Increasing temperatures due to climate change are likely to reduce the amount of water in Indiana’s soil and streams over time, despite modest projected increases in average annual rainfall, according to a study by Indiana University researchers.
To promote collaborative research and inform water stakeholders throughout the state, an Indiana University research team has created the Future Water science gateway, a public interactive data portal that shows users a highly detailed model of the Wabash River Basin under a number of different climate scenarios.
The Clean Water Act (CWA), which became law in 1972, is the primary federal mechanism by which streams, lakes, and wetlands are protected from degradation in the United States. On 23 January, the agencies released the Navigable Waters Protection Rule, which details how the CWA will be enforced, including which waters receive federal protections under the act. ERI Affiliate Adam Ward and Riley Walsh argue that this rule blatantly ignores established science—including the agencies’ own studies and syntheses—and risks degrading U.S. waters to the point that ecosystems may be permanently harmed.
Shahzeen Attari studies how people respond to information about climate change. As a scientist at Indiana University Bloomington, she also explores other aspects of how people choose to use energy, water, and other resources. Her work is interdisciplinary research. In her case, it involves multiple fields of psychology, engineering, and environmental science.
The rate at which snow has fallen in the United States has changed significantly over the last 50 years, according to a new report. Those changes have forced Hoosiers to adapt to a changing climate over decades.
Global warming and its consequences can provoke anxiety in young people. Educators need to be trained on how best to teach about climate change.
Elected officials and community leaders from across Indiana will visit Evansville this year for an annual leadership summit on climate change. Earth Charter Indiana said the date for the Climate Leadership Summit is yet to be determined but that it will take place at the end of summer.
Bloomington residents are invited to share their experiences, concerns, and ideas related to climate change in an online community survey.
Three individuals will receive the John W. Ryan Award for Distinguished Contributions to International Programs and Studies including ERI Affiliate Gabriel Filippelli.
How well prepared for flooding are Indiana’s communities? And how does climate change affect flood risk?
“When we talk about climate change, biodiversity loss and desertification, we are talking about the symptoms of the insatiable quest for economic growth and inequities that keep people who contribute the least to these problems suffer the most,” said Susan Chomba during her keynote address to the International Society of Tropical Foresters Conference. “We must recognize that human beings are living in an interconnected world.”
On Jan. 20, IU President Michael McRobbie unveiled the Big Red 200 supercomputer, a long-awaited project poised to change the face of research at IU and across the state. The Big Red 200 operates at 5.9 petaFLOPS a measure of computational speed making it the 32nd most powerful supercomputer in operation.
If you want to clean up the largest pollution spill in the country, one unaltered by decades of work and billions of dollars, you need to spend a lot of time making tiny measurements. Most of them will only confirm the depressing trend: More and more contaminants are winding their way from farms into rivers and streams.
The climate is changing. Some still argue over the cause and who or what to blame but as they experience more rain and more flooding there’s more agreement that action is needed.
After six months of celebrations, Indiana University (IU) officially marked its bicentennial on Monday – and it saved the best for last, inaugurating Big Red 200, a new AI-focused supercomputer that joins the ranks of the fastest academic supercomputers in the world.
Janet McCabe is a former assistant administrator of the air and radiation office at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. She once oversaw the nation’s ethanol program. She believes the country will never reach its sustainable-energy goals without major policy changes. But McCabe also has “some sympathy for the agricultural community,” which got drawn into ethanol at the government’s behest.
EPA aims to breathe new life into a climate software program designed to help small and midsize communities prepare for severe weather events associated with climate change.
The Jan. 10 IndyStar article about how the massive DigIndy tunnel project will be undersized for the rain events we can increasingly expect to see as Indiana's changing climate brings more frequent and more severe storms is just one example — a pretty dramatic one for sure — of how much Hoosiers need accurate information about our future and governmental processes that allow that information to be considered when making decisions about infrastructure and other community investments.
A new paper co-authored by IU Assistant Professor Ben Kravitz assesses the body of knowledge related to solar engineering, a form of climate engineering that aims to cool the surface of the earth by reflecting more sunlight back into space, and recommends a systematic effort to support decision-makers who may one day consider techniques to artificially cool the planet.
Climate change in Indiana will mean more rain in the winter and spring. Because there are fewer plants at that time of year to soak up all of that water, that will mean more flooding. As we reported back in May, many Hoosiers don’t have flood insurance. Other than buying flood insurance, how can cities in Indiana and their residents prepare for more flooding in the state?
The Evangelical Community Church and Bloomington synagogue Beth Shalom have paired up to work together on environmental issues. ECC Pastor Bob Whitaker knows the partnership might be considered unusual, because Evangelicals don’t often get involved in interfaith groups.
The Trump administration is working to weaken U.S. environmental regulations in many areas, from water and air pollution to energy development and land conservation. One of its most controversial proposals is known as the secret science rule because it would require scientists to disclose all of their raw data, including confidential medical records, in order for their findings to be considered in shaping regulations.