State attorney general may step in on fuel cleanup

SIDNEY — Union Pacific says it's doing its part to clean up an estimated 2,000 gallons of diesel fuel that spilled into a creek that winds through Sidney 2-1/2 weeks ago.

Whether it's done enough, however, may ultimately be for Attorney General Lisa Madigan to decide.

Shorter timeline, carbon tax among proposed changes

URBANA — An internal carbon tax for big energy users and a shorter timeline for reaching "carbon neutrality" are two possibilities outlined in a draft climate action plan for the University of Illinois.

Ash borer efforts slowing other arbor work in Champaign

CHAMPAIGN — The city is falling behind on its pruning and removal services because of the continued problem with emerald ash borer, its acting forestry supervisor says.

Verification of Monticello recycling services urged

MONTICELLO — With some Monticello residents questioning whether garbage haulers are providing the required recycling service, city staff said it will need to start verifying that part of new waste hauling changes that went into effect last month.

Rob Kanter: Feast your eyes on beautiful birds

Have you noticed friends or co-workers looking a little sleep-deprived lately? Perhaps these same people complain of a sore neck and look past you into the trees while you're talking. You may be encountering birders caught up in the excitement of spring migration.

Crews still cleaning rail fuel spill in Sidney

SIDNEY — The scent of diesel fuel still hangs in the air — kind of like what you'd smell at a gas station, as one resident put it. And there's still a shimmer on the surface of the water along some parts of a creek that winds through the village.

Bill on Mahomet Aquifer moves closer to passage

SPRINGFIELD — A bill giving added protection to the Mahomet Aquifer, the primary water source for Champaign-Urbana and much of central Illinois, moved to passage stage in the Illinois Senate Thursday.

The legislation, which already has received House approval, was approved unanimously by the Senate Environment Committee without debate.

Rail fuel spill stirs concerns

SIDNEY — Village officials fear that fish in the creek that winds through Sidney could be threatened by as much as 2,000 gallons of diesel fuel that drained into it from a railroad spill over the weekend.

Rob Kanter: Show some landscaping love to wildlife in area

On Saturday, the local conservation group Grand Prairie Friends will conduct a sale of native prairie and woodland plants at Lincoln Square Village in Urbana.

Future Cronus plant site sees planting of last crop

TUSCOLA — Crops are being planted for one last time on the 240 acres of rural Tuscola farmland slated to be site of the new Cronus fertilizer plant.

Come spring 2016, all of that corn and soybeans will be replaced by a beehive of activity, with construction workers transforming the farmland into a $1.4 billion plant.