New education center coming to Kennekuk

DANVILLE — About 17 years after the Vermilion County Conservation District's education staff first suggested building a new outdoor school facility, ground will be broken Sunday at the site of a new environmental education center at Kennekuk County Park.

"We're very excited to finally get the project going," said Ken Konsis, director of the conservation district.

PBL expects $1 million boost from wind farm

PAXTON — The school district should see a $1 million spike in revenue next year, while homeowners in the district should see a savings on their property tax bills next summer, thanks to the construction of a wind farm near Paxton.

Environmental Almanac: It's a great time to equip home with solar panels

Have you ever entertained the idea of generating electricity at home with solar panels on your roof? If so, now may be the time to act. That's the conclusion Phil Krein reached recently, anyway. He's a longtime resident of central Champaign and a professor in the University of Illinois Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, a guy who knows this stuff as well as anyone around.

Firm outlines aquifer criteria

SAVOY — Representatives from Layne Christensen Co., a global water management company, spoke to the Savoy village board this week about the likelihood of the Mahomet Aquifer being designated a sole-source aquifer and how it will affect the proposed disposal of polychlorinated biphenyls, or PCBs, at the Clinton Landfill.

UI, DACC, Flex-N-Gate honored for sustainability

CHAMPAIGN — An Urbana business, the University of Illinois and Danville Area Community College have been honored with 2012 state sustainability awards for their efforts to protect the environment, preserve resources and improve the economy.

No detailed discussion of water sale to coal mine in Homer

HOMER — Two area farmers asked the Homer Village Board on Monday night to consider providing their businesses with water for their fields and livestock.

Homer water sale to coal mine would be legal

HOMER — It appears the village has the legal authority to sell water to Sunrise Coal for its proposed coal mine in Vermilion County, according to Homer Mayor David Lucas.

Governments file complaint against Clinton Landfill

CHAMPAIGN — City leaders and a group of area governments have filed a complaint before the Illinois Pollution Control Board alleging that Clinton Landfill is illegally operating a waste facility where landfill officials hope to soon begin burying potentially harmful chemicals.

Land conservation group to buy 100-plus acres along Sangamon

CHAMPAIGN — A local land conservation group has received a grant to help it purchase a 108-acre tract along the Sangamon River near Monticello.

It's another step in a long-range plan by the Land Conservation Foundation to acquire hundreds of acres of forested bottomlands along the Sangamon in Champaign and Piatt counties.

Environmental Almanac: Patient photographer catches unusual find

Have you ever seen a siren? I don't mean one of the temptresses of Greek myth or the thing that makes noise atop an emergency vehicle. I mean the amphibian called a siren.