Category Archives: Land use

Two Canadian Filmmakers Drop by for an Interview

This past Sunday, Toronto-based independent filmmakers Geoff Norris and Kyle Lennan came by my house in Joliet to interview me about the long-simmering Peotone Airport controversy in agricultural lands south of Chicago in Will County, IL. Norris and Lennan have … Continue reading

Posted in Agriculture, Economics, Land use, Peotone, Politics, Social justice, Transportation | Comments Off

IL EPA Hears Southeast Side Residents’ Complaints about Petcoke Piles along Calumet River

Last Thursday the Illinois EPA held a contentious public meeting on Chicago’s SE Side to hear residents’ concerns and complaints about the massive piles of petcoke — a waste by-product of tar sands oil refining done in nearby Whiting, IN … Continue reading

Posted in Chicago, Community, Health, Land use, News, Pollution, Rivers, Social justice, Waste & Recycling, Water | Comments Off

Piles and Piles of Petcoke: Environmental Justice along the Calumet River

Today’s Mike Nowak Show on WCPT features a segment about the petcoke controversy in the Calumet Region of Chicago’s far South Side. This waste by-product from the refining of oil from the tar sands of Canada has been piling up … Continue reading

Posted in Chicago, Community, Health, Land use, News, Pollution, Rivers, Social justice, Waste & Recycling, Water | Comments Off

Ain’t Nobody Here but Us Chickens

Question: What do the northeastern Illinois communities of Arlington Heights, Batavia, Chicago, Downers Grove, Evanston, Hoffman Estates, Naperville, Northbrook, Oak Park, Plainfield, and St. Charles have in common with Cincinnati, OH; Nashville, TN; Pittsburgh, PA; Sioux City, IA; and Topeka, KS? Answer: All of them … Continue reading

Posted in Agriculture, Joliet, Land use, News, Politics, Sustainability, Urban ecology | Comments Off

Burning Rock Run: Fire Management in a Will County Marshland

From my perch this morning at the Joliet Public Library’s West Branch, I’m looking out at the Rock Run Forest Preserve of Will County, which is adjacent to the library. Looks like folks from the FPDWC are doing a prescribed … Continue reading

Posted in Biodiversity, Land use, Parklands, Sustainability, Urban ecology, Wetlands | Comments Off

Junior’s Fall from Grace: More Bad News for Peotone

You’d think that Jessie Jackson Jr.’s stunning fall from political grace last week would have opponents of the Great Imaginary Airport in Peotone doing cartwheels of joy out in the cold autumnal winds of eastern Will County. After all, the … Continue reading

Posted in Economics, Joliet, Land use, Peotone, Politics, Transportation | Comments Off

Hackmatack National Wildlife Refuge Proposal Wins Federal Approval

This past week saw some great news this week for citizens of the greater Chicago region as well as southeast Wisconsin. The US Dept of the Interior has announced the approval of the Hackmatack National Wildlife Refuge, a constellation of … Continue reading

Posted in Biodiversity, Land use, News, Parklands, Wildlife | Comments Off

Urban Farms in Silicon Valley

The key litmus test of a good professional conference for me is this: are there cool field trips planned? If the answer is yes, the gathering is likely to be an enjoyable and fruitful occasion. That was definitely the case … Continue reading

Posted in Agriculture, Biodiversity, Conferences, Faculty, Field Trips, Food, Land use, Wildlife | Comments Off

Bulldozing the Rights of the People: That’s the Illiana Way

Remember the Prairie Parkway? Just a few years ago, it was the Big New Road Project of choice in northeastern Illinois. A monumentally dumb idea for a whole host of reasons, the Prairie Parkway fortunately fizzled after the recession of … Continue reading

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From the Chicago Portage to the Iron Street Farm: An Urban Landscape Exploration

Last Saturday was the first field trip opportunity of the summer for my PLS 392 Seminar in Humanities class at Roosevelt, the focus of which is “Representing the Urban Landscape.” After last summer’s trip to Canal Origins and Stearns Quarry … Continue reading

Posted in Agriculture, Chicago, Field Trips, History, Land use, Rivers, Urban nature, Water | Comments Off