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Environmentalists are seething over the EPA temporarily relaxing enforcement rules. (mvpdv0ra / Flickr)

The EPA is relaxing enforcement of “environmental legal obligations” during the coronavirus pandemic, and activists are seething.

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Keep wipes out of Chicago's sewer system. (Patty Wetli / WTTW)

The Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago has seen a rise in disinfectant wipes stuck to filtering screens at its water reclamation plants, and it now has some advice for residents.

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Opponents of the Dakota Access Pipeline expansion held a protest ahead of an ICC hearing. (Patty Wetli / WTTW)

Lawyers began presenting evidence Thursday as the Illinois Commerce Commission weighs a petition to double the throughput of the controversial Dakota Access pipeline, which runs through the state.

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(Monty and Rose / Facebook)

Remember those endangered piping plovers that captured Chicagoans’ hearts? They’re back — as the stars of the documentary “Monty and Rose,” screening this month during the One Earth Film Festival.

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(Erich Ferdinand / Flickr)

Hosting a more sustainable Super Bowl party can be as easy as buying snacks from the bulk bin and using cloth napkins instead of paper. Oh, and split the difference on pizza boxes.

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(Frank McNamara / Flickr)

In 2003, the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency had 1,265 employees. By 2018, that number had fallen to 639, according to a new report that a former IEPA director describes as “both a wake-up call and call to action.”

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A Chicago Department of Public Health sign warns passersby about hazardous materials at a 67-acre property west of Wolf Lake at 126th Place and Avenue O. (Alex Ruppenthal / WTTW News)

A 67-acre Southeast Side site served as a dumping ground for Republic Steel for nearly 30 years. Inspection records show the property is contaminated with lead, cyanide, mercury and other potentially harmful pollutants. 

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Emmanuel Pratt (Courtesy MacArthur Foundation)

Emmanuel Pratt will use a South Side community farm he developed as a “living laboratory” to teach students about contemporary sustainability initiatives. 

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Rendering of the proposed Chicago zero-waste marketplace called Zaste. (Courtesy of Zaste)

Buying in bulk and hunting down package-free items can be a challenge that often requires trips to multiple stores. To make sustainable shopping more accessible, two Chicago sisters plan to open a zero-waste marketplace by spring 2020.

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(Kevin Gessner / Flickr)

A team led by several Chicago-area researchers has developed a new method to “upcycle” single-use plastics into a number of commonly used products, such as motor oils, detergents and cosmetics. 

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(Pixabay)

A group of 30 states and cities are taking legal action to defend the federal government’s authority to regulate emissions from coal-fired power plants. 

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A piping plover (Lorraine Minns / Audubon Photography Awards)

Hundreds of bird species in North America are at risk of extinction from climate change, according to an alarming new report from the National Audubon Society.

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Maj. Erich Bergiel, right, inspects the solar panels on the roof of the Marjeh Fruit and Vegetable Packing Facility in Afghanistan while he talks with Abdul Rahman, a renewable energy engineer. (Master Gunnery Sgt. Phil Mehringer / U.S. Department of Defense)

An increasing number of veterans are pursuing careers in fast-growing environmental sectors, like solar and wind energy, says Jessica Klinge, who will lead the Illinois chapter of Green Veterans.

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(Free-Photos / Pixabay)

The Low-Income Solar Energy Act would expand an existing program and create new ones to make solar energy more affordable for low-income Americans. 

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Dr. May Berenbaum, professor of entomology and head of the Department of Entomology at the University of Illinois (Courtesy University of Illinois)

The polar bear has become the poster child for climate change, but increasing temperatures impact many forms of life – including insects. Dr. May Berenbaum weighs in on what that means for the rest of life on Earth. 

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Flooding in Chicago’s Albany Park neighborhood on April 18, 2013. (Center for Neighborhood Technology / Flickr)

Illinois experienced more than 1,500 flood events from 2000 to 2018 – an average of 1.5 floods per week – resulting in $3 billion in property damages, according to a new report from the American Geophysical Union.

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