Drought
9:26 am
Mon July 22, 2013

Despite Recent Rains, Drought Continues Hold On State

Drought monitor map from July 16.
Credit U.S. Drought Monitor

A smattering of summer showers is providing much-needed rain across much of Oklahoma, but nearly a third of the state remains locked in extreme drought.

The driest portion of the state includes major agricultural producing counties in western Oklahoma that has withered crops, dried up farm ponds and decimated cattle herds.

Read more
Earthquake
8:18 am
Mon July 22, 2013

Oklahoma Begins Work On Reducing Oil Field, Earthquake Risk

Map showing an earthquake from April 16.
Credit U.S. Geological Survey

The Oklahoma Geological Survey has begun work on plans to reduce the risk of oil-field work causing earthquakes.

The Tulsa World reported Saturday that a summary report says the risk of oil-field caused earthquakes is small — and can be reduced further with "appropriate industry practices" involving injection disposal wells.

Oklahoma Geological Survey research seismologist Austin Holland says the wells inject waste fluids into the ground and are not hydraulic fracturing — or fracking — which is a process used to release minerals from beneath the earth's surface.

Read more
Community
8:12 am
Mon July 22, 2013

If You Build It, Better Health Will Come

A slide from Richard Jackson's presentation during the Placemaking Conference at the University of Oklahoma.
Credit OU Institute for Quality Communities

Many scientists, doctors, and public health researchers say there’s a link between a community’s health and the built environment.

Nearly 800 civic leaders attended a recent placemaking conference sponsored by the University of Oklahoma’s Institute for Quality Communities.

Read more
Highways
7:24 am
Mon July 22, 2013

Commuter Alert: I-44, I-235 Interchange Construction Closing Ramps, Lanes

Construction in the I-44, I-235 interchange will lead to lane and ramp closures through August.
Credit Google Maps

The ramps and lanes in the I-44/I-235 interchange will close beginning Monday night, continuing through August. 

Drivers are advised to expect lengthy delays and are encouraged to find an alternate route such as I-35, I-40, SH-74/Lake Hefner Parkway or I-240 to bypass the closure.

Closures will take place nightly from 8 p.m. to 6 a.m. beginning Monday and continuing through August: 

Read more
U.S.
5:30 am
Sun July 21, 2013

A Woman Among Men: Female Firefighter Blazed A Trail

Judy Brewer was the country's first full-time female firefighter.
John Duricka AP

Originally published on Sun July 21, 2013 11:41 am

Arlington County, Va., wants more female firefighters. The fire department there has even set up a camp to inspire potential recruits. Donning helmets and matching camp shirts, teenage girls line up to watch a demonstration: A model room with furniture is ablaze.

Camper Tara Crosey says she came to camp in part because she "wanted to show that girls are as strong as boys and girls can do what boys can do."

Read more
Environment
5:30 am
Sun July 21, 2013

Fighting Fire With Fire: Why Some Burns Are Good For Nature

An arborist from the Montana Conservation Corps works to clear pine trees from land in Centennial Valley, Mont.
John W. Poole NPR

Originally published on Sun July 21, 2013 1:50 pm

Wildfires were once essential to the American West. Prairies and forests burned regularly, and those fires not only determined the mix of flora and fauna that made up the ecosystem, but they regenerated the land.

When people replaced wilderness with homes and ranches, they aggressively eliminated fire. But now, scientists are trying to bring fire back to the wilderness, to recreate what nature once did on its own.

One place they're doing this is Centennial Valley, in southwestern Montana.

Read more
Space
4:09 pm
Sat July 20, 2013

One Small Step For Man, One Giant Lunar Park For The U.S.?

The moon, seen from the International Space Station, on July 31.
NASA

Originally published on Sat July 20, 2013 5:50 pm

Can astronauts Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin's "giant leap for mankind" be permanently preserved? Two House Democrats want to do just that: They proposed a bill to create a national historic park for the Apollo 11 mission — on the moon. The legislation would designate a park on the moon to honor that first mission, as well as preserve artifacts from other lunar missions

Read more
NPR Story
10:26 am
Sat July 20, 2013

Veteran Journalist Helen Thomas Leaves An Outspoken Legacy

Veteran White House correspondent Helen Thomas broke barriers and became a White House fixture, but her famous bluntness caused her downfall in the end.
Chip Somodevilla Getty Images

Originally published on Tue July 23, 2013 2:09 pm

Read more
Indian Times
8:44 pm
Fri July 19, 2013

Native Scholar Blue Clark Puts A Fresh Face On 1951 Guide to Oklahoma's Indians

Professor Blue Clark

Professor Blue Clark (Muscogee Creek) is a voracious reader. His pack rat tendencies with file keeping and note taking served him well when presented with the formidable task of updating Muriel Wright's 1951 work, A Guide To The Indian Tribes of Oklahoma. For years, people turned to this book for answers, but time has changed the realities of most, if not all, tribes. Clark, as a member of an Oklahoma tribe, knew that.

Read more
Politics and Government
6:37 pm
Fri July 19, 2013

OK Legislature Will Study Relationship of Poverty To Domestic Violence

Rep. Kay Floyd

The relationship between poverty and domestic violence will be the focus of an interim study by Rep. Kay Floyd, D-Oklahoma City.   The Speaker of the House T.W. Shannon, R-Lawton, approved the study last week and it will be heard by the Human Services committee in the fall.

Read more

Pages