Soil erosion on a farmland
Lynn Betts / USDA
June 06, 2016

Illinois Facing Most Severe Erosion In Two Decades

Illinois is losing topsoil – the layer of surface dirt that’s rich with nutrients and vital for food production. And the problem of erosion on Illinois farms is serious: In 2015, roughly one-fifth of Illinois’s farmland lost more soil than it made. Austin Keating has more.

One of the panels of the original Harmonic Tone Generator
Courtesy of Skot
April 27, 2016

The Story Behind An Early Electronic Music Instrument Developed in Champaign-Urbana

Computer synthesizers have likely become a staple of your daily life – Siri, digital music, YouTube and more – but do you know where they come from? One of the earliest synthesizer structures was invented in the University of Illinois’ Experimental Music Lab in the early 1960s as part of one of the first computer instruments – The Harmonic Tone Generator.

Rodney Davis
(Jeff Bossert/WILL)
April 26, 2016

Rep. Davis Among Those Seeking Reversal Of Spy Agency Decision

The Taylorville Republican says federal officials didn't place national security at the top of the list when deciding on a new location for the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency in north St. Louis.  Davis is among the lawmakers recommending they reconsider a site near Scott Air Force Base in Illinois.

April 25, 2016

Incarcerated Mothers, Fusion Energy & Higher Ed Funding

On the 21st: There are more than 175,000 Illinois kids with a parent in prison - we spoke with some of these families and the organizations that help them stay in touch. Also, a fusion energy testing facility is starting operations in Illinois. And $600 million will soon start flowing to Illinois colleges and universities. We spoke with the president of Western Illinois University about what this means for his campus.

Kiss Me Kate ticket stub
April 22, 2016

Friday Politics, Arts & Culture

On The 21st: Thursday night, Illinois university presidents awaited news of a funding measure that would’ve provided them with the first state funds in almost a year - until it fell through. We spoke with an statehouse reporter in Springfield who filled us in on Friday's activities, including the eventual passage of a bill that would enable funding for state universities. Plus, we spoke with choreographer Endalyn Taylor about the musical, Kiss Me, Kate, and her dance career; the Midwest and Jewish origins of one of America's most popular cookbooks; and we honor Prince with a song.

Logo for Ameren Illinois Utilities
April 07, 2016

Ameren Files For Electric Delivery Rate Decrease

Utlity company Ameren has filed a request with the Illinois Commerce Commission for an electric delivery rate decrease.  If approved, it's not known how much the change will impact bills, but it wouldn't go into effect until January 2017.  Ameren gas customers are also expected to see a reduction now in their bills due to a drop in the cost of natural gas.

Lynn Rohrscheib inspects her soybean fields.
Courtesy of Lynn Rohrscheib
March 21, 2016

The 21st: Trade With Cuba, & STEM Education

Before the embargo - U.S. agricultural exports to Cuba were worth about $600 million a year - in today’s prices.  Others estimate Cuba is a $1.2 billion market for agricultural exports if the embargo and other trade barriers are lifted. Today on The 21st we explored what an open Cuba would mean for Illinois. Also, how a team of Illinois State University researchers and a turtle are changing STEM education. 

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