Thumbs up: Kibosh on Purdue coal boiler
After loads of negative press attention (including in this
paper), a committee of Purdue's Board of Trustees passed a resolution nixing
plans to install a new "clean-coal" boiler inside its Wade power plant. School
leadership cited financial changes for killing the boiler, Purdue's sixth.
Without making any firm commitments to sustainability, vice president of
physical facilities Bob McMains did say Purdue would begin restructuring its
energy plan for the future, seeking out a permit to install a
greener-but-not-exactly-sustainable natural gas boiler instead. The
Boilermakers' namesake legacy lives on.
Thumbs up: Checking up on Doctors
Indiana patients may soon be able to rest easy knowing their
health care professionals have a clean record. How this requirement wasn't
already a given is beyond us, but the state's Senate Appropriations Committee
approved a bill last Thursday allowing medical boards to suspend, deny or
revoke licenses of those who fail criminal background checks. Sen. Patricia
Miller (R-Indianapolis) backed the bill, questioning the honor code policy that
the medical world currently employs. Opponents voiced concern about violating
due-process rights. A valid point,
but we still prefer our gynecologists rap sheet-free.
Thumbs down: Again with them gays
State lawmakers made discouraging progress in banning gay
marriage this week. Joint Resolution 13, which would amend the state
constitution to declare that marriage is solely between one man and one woman
and would prohibit civil unions was approved by a House committee on Monday. If
passed by the House, it moves on to the Senate; ultimately, voters may see it
on the ballot in 2014 should it gain approval again in 2013. There's still time
to stop the campaign in its tracks — just give us a second to wrap our
heads around why Republicans are pushing so hard on anything besides easing the
state's financial woes.
Thumbs down: Bat plague comes to Indiana
An ecological epidemic sweeping the nation's bat population
has made its way to Indiana. The state's Dept. of Natural Resources made public
last Tuesday that a brown bat showing symptoms of white-nose syndrome was found
inside Endless Cave in Salem, Ind. The fungus is responsible for killing more
than a million bats in the eastern United States since 2006, according to
MSNBC. Adding insult to injury, experts suggest that spores of the fungus enter
the bats' environment on our clothes. State caves have been closed to the
public for the last two years, but it seems DNR efforts to stem the bat plague
have been in vain.