water quality

Ashley Dean / WWNO

At a time when fear of a virus has nagged at our every choice for months, the last thing anyone needs is an added fear of flesh-eating bacteria. But we need to talk about flesh-eating bacteria.

It’s only midmorning, but shrimper Thomas Olander is already calling it quits for the day in a small bayou in St. Mary Parish, on the central Louisiana coast.

There aren’t enough shrimp out there — especially the highly sought-after jumbo shrimp that fetch the highest prices at the market.

“It's just not worth it,” Olander said, of his morning burning fuel, supplies and time.

When corn and soybean farmer Kenny Reichard stopped plowing some of his fields in northern Missouri in 1982, other farmers told him that it was a terrible decision that would lower his yields. 

“I’ve been told many times that no-till doesn’t work,” said Reichard, 62, who farms north of Brunswick in Chariton County. 

More than three decades later, state programs and agriculture initiatives are trying to encourage farmers to adopt no-till and other practices that reduce fertilizer runoff that contributes to the dead zone in the Gulf of Mexico. While many farmers think such methods are expensive, they’re critical to cleaning up the Mississippi River basin. 

americanqueensteamboatcompany.com

Those calliope-playing Mississippi riverboats will soon be carrying more than passengers. Scientists are preparing to attach monitors to some boats in an effort to gather more data on the river's water quality.

A seventh-grader's investigation promtped the Orleans Parish School Board to test his school's water for lead.
Courtesy of Pixbay.com

The Orleans Parish School Board says drinking water at Homer Plessy Community School is safe, according to state guidelines. The school board tested the water after a seventh-grade student found traces of lead using an at-home test kit.

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