environment

ADOT

Reduced traffic on the roads during the coronavirus pandemic has led to improvements in Arizona’s air quality. KNAU’s Melissa Sevigny reports.


Ryan Heinsus

Fifty years ago today, an estimated 20 million people marched in the streets for the first national Earth Day. But this year’s celebration is taking place virtually because of the coronavirus disease. KNAU’s Melissa Sevigny spoke with Stefan Sommer, one of the organizers of Flagstaff’s Cyber Earth Day Celebration, about why he thinks it’s vital to stay focused on solving climate change in the midst of the pandemic.


Devin Ford/Flickr

The Phoenix metro area has some of the most polluted air in the country according to the American Lung Association’s newest State of the Air report released this week.

Edward Blake/Flickr

Fewer motorists in Arizona and Nevada following the states’ stay-at-home orders appears to be improving the air quality and decreasing the effects vehicle emissions have on the environment.

Sandra Pascoe Ortiz

Fans of the prickly pear cactus might be familiar with recipes for cactus jelly, cactus candy, and fried cactus pads or nopalitos. But how about a recipe for a biodegradable plastic bag?


City Government of Prescott

A controversial proposed water policy would allow the City of Prescott to deliver water to houses outside the city limits. KNAU’s Melissa Sevigny reports. 

The proposal outlines an “expansion zone” where homeowners can apply to hook up to the City of Prescott’s water and sewage system. Clyde Halstead, the city's senior assistant attorney, says the goal is to reduce the number of homes using unregulated wells and septic tanks.

John Blaustein

Floating down the Colorado River through the Grand Canyon can be a leisurely, relaxing experience. But for a handful of river runners, speed is the real objective.


Melissa Sevigny

A new study from Northern Arizona University shows the impact raising cattle has on water resources in the West. Scientists with a project called FEWSION made a detailed map of how much river water is used for crops that feed cows. KNAU’s Melissa Sevigny spoke to author Ben Ruddell about how the findings could inform water policies. 


U.S. Drought Monitor

In 2018 the Four Corners region suffered from an “exceptional” drought—the highest rating on the U.S. Drought Monitor’s scale. Water sources dried up and crops died, costing the U.S. economy 3 billion dollars. Scientists are now able to pinpoint how much of that drought was the result of climate change. KNAU’s Melissa Sevigny spoke with Emily Williams of the University of California-Santa Barbara, the lead author of the study.


nau.edu

Biocrust is a vital, but fragile material that covers a good portion of the soil surface on the Colorado Plateau. This “living skin” is a complex concoction of cyanobacteria, algae, fungi, moss and lichen.


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