MidAmerican Energy Nears Completion On Wind Farm

Primghar, Iowa — There are a lot of first places for MidAmerican Energy’s wind power in O’Brien County.
Wind Turbine Blade MidAmerican
Of all the ways to produce power, the greatest amount of MidAmerican’s electricity generating capacity is now in the form of wind power. MidAmerican ranks number one in the nation in ownership of wind-powered generation capacity among rate-regulated utilities. MidAmerican’s Highland Wind Farm near Primghar, which is now approaching completion is the company’s largest wind farm to date. The Highland wind farm is part of MidAmerican’s “Wind 8” project, which is the largest wind project they have ever done, and it was the largest economic development project in Iowa history at the time it was announced.

Ruth Comer, spokesperson for MidAmerican Energy tells us more about the wind farm construction that is now wrapping up, and a new one, also in O’Brien County, which just getting underway.

She says that soon, they’ll have more wind generation capacity than coal, natural gas, or nuclear generation capacity.

She says O’Brien County has some of the best wind resources of any part of Iowa, and Iowa is a good wind state as well.

She says while there are always opponents to anything, they find a lot of support for wind projects in Iowa. She says they’re good for customers as they bring lower and more stable prices. They bring economic development in terms of jobs and property tax base, and she says wind-generated power is good for the environment.

Liquid Manure Flow Extinguishes Tractor Fire

Paullina, Iowa – It’s not the normal use for liquid manure, but the fertilizer ended up being one of the heros in a fire call on Sunday, October 4, 2015 near Paullina.
liquid manure knife applicator
According to Paullina Fire Chief Brian Feltman, about 3 PM, the Paullina Fire Department was called to the report of a tractor on fire three miles west and two and a half miles north of Paullina in the middle of a field.

The chief says the fire department saw that the fire was nearly put out as they approached the scene. He says the tractor’s operator had been knifing in liquid manure using an umbilical cord back to a manure pump at the manure pit. He says the fire appeared have started when a hot exhaust pipe ignited bean dust. He says when the operator noticed the fire he disconnected the liquid manure hose and used the flow of liquid manure to put out the fire. Feltman says that it did a pretty good job and by the time they got out there, they just had to take some shields off and blow water in there to make sure the fire was out.

Chief Feltman reports that there were no injuries to people, pets, or livestock.

He reports that the back of motor and the cab of the tractor were pretty much destroyed.

He says they used 150 gallons of water to fight the fire, and crews were on scene for 45 minutes.

CRP Now Available For Grasslands

cattleNorthwest Iowa — Northwest Iowa farmers who agree to use sustainable grazing practices may be eligible to take part in the updated Conservation Reserve Program, or CRP, for grasslands.

Katie Olthoff of the Iowa Cattlemen’s Association says the program is a change to the federal CRP.  She says it now includes a grasslands program nationally. That means farmers can use their grasslands areas for grazing, as long as they agree to certain conservation practices on that land.

Farmers who are interested can sign up immediately, by applying at their local FSA Office.  The application period runs through November 20th, but she says there will be more application periods after that time.  She says that, while CRP has been around for years, this is the first time the new extension has been around.  She says the CRP Grasslands program was created in the 2014 Farm Bill, but there have been some changes just this summer in the July 2015 edition of the Federal Register, so this is the first time it’s been available for Iowa’s farmers.  You can learn more about the program at the Iowa Cattlemen’s website.

EPA Offers Grants To Upgrade School Buses

school busses_sxcSheldon, Iowa — Iowa school districts are being encouraged to apply for federal funding to replace old school buses that emit large amounts of air pollution.  Karen Grimes, with the Iowa Department of Natural Resources, says only a few Iowa districts are likely to be awarded a share of the money from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

Grimes says there’s $7 million available nationwide…so that’s only about $140,000 per state. Last year, seven school districts in Iowa were awarded EPA funding toward the purchase of at least one new bus. The only northwest Iowa school district was Cherokee Community.

School buses built before 2007 have diesel engines that emit tiny particles known to aggravate asthma, and cause lung damage and other serious health problems.

We talked to Sheldon Community Schools representatives, who told us that of the District’s thirteen buses, seven were built prior to 2007.  Of those, three are regular route buses, with one driven by subs, and three spares.

The Iowa Department of Education reports there are around 6,000 school buses in the state and roughly one-third are from model years 2006 or older. Buses built after 2006 were designed to cut emissions by 90 percent.

School districts have until October 30 to apply for the EPA funding rebates, which can be used to purchases new buses.  Since buses cost in the neighborhood of $80,000 each, the EPA funding rebates can help with a purchase, but most likely won’t cover the entire cost.

Sanford Sheldon Recommends Flu Shots

Sheldon, Iowa — Flu season is on the way. And the Centers for Disease Control say that an annual flu vaccination is the best way to prevent the flu as well as flu-related complications that could lead to severe illness, hospitalization and even death.
immunize syringe shot drug_sxc
Influenza is among the most common respiratory illnesses in the United States, infecting millions of people every flu season. Every year, flu spreads across the country, from person to person, among families and communities. The severity of flu illness can vary from mild to severe. When severe, flu complications can lead to hospitalization and sometimes even death. The CDC estimates that from the 1976-1977 season to the 2006-2007 flu season, flu-associated deaths ranged from a low of about 3,000 to a high of about 49,000 people. And each year it’s estimated that more than 200,000 people are hospitalized because of flu-related complications.

Dr. Amy Badberg with Sanford Sheldon says that they recommend that everyone get a flu shot.

She tells us where you can get a flu shot.

She says the pharmacies also have flu vaccine available, and Dr. Badberg says it doesn’t really matter where you get your flu shot, as long as you get one.

Health experts recommend that everyone 6 months and older get a flu vaccine. Dr. Badberg says there is a very small number of people for whom they do not recommend getting the flu vaccine.

The CDC says that over the years, the number of people recommended for flu vaccination has grown steadily as experts have learned more about who is at high risk for flu complications or who bears the greatest burden of illness and is likely to spread flu in the community.

Flu Vaccination Clinics Offered Through Sanford Sheldon


Mondays 5-6:30 p.m.

(by appointment only no Medicaid or Iowa Wellness)

October 12th
October 19th
October 26th


(by appointment only no Medicaid or Iowa Wellness)

October 7th 8-Noon
October 14th 8-Noon
October 21st 1-5 p.m
October 28th 1-5 p.m
November 4th 8-Noon
November 11th 1-5
November 18th 1-5


Mondays in November  1-5 p.m

(by appointment only no Medicaid or Iowa Wellness)

November 2nd
November 9th
November 16th
November 23rd
November 30th


Iowa Wellness/Medicaid

Sanford Sheldon has set aside the following dates for all Iowa Wellness/Medicaid patients:

October 14th
October 20th
October 29th
November 4th
November 10th



(by appointment only no Medicaid or Iowa Wellness)

October 12th 3-5 p.m.
October 19th 8-10 a.m
October 30th 3-5 p.m

October 6th 3-5 p.m
October 14th 5:30-7:30p.m.

All Medicaid/Iowa Wellness insurance clients will need to make an appointment with a provider.  Please call (712) 324-5356 to schedule.  For patients with Medicare and private insurances, bring your identification card.

For questions regarding a Sanford Sheldon flu shot, please call (712) 324-5356.

Flags At Half Staff To Honor Oregon Shooting Victims

Washington, DC — Flags are flying at half-staff in Iowa and across the country as a mark of respect for the victims of gun violence in Roseburg, Oregon.
half staff NCC
President Obama has ordered that the flag of the United States shall be flown at half-staff at the White House and upon all public buildings and grounds, at all military posts and naval stations, and on all naval vessels of the Federal Government in the District of Columbia and throughout the United States and its Territories and possessions until sunset on Tuesday, October 6, 2015. He also said the flag should be flown at half-staff for the same length of time at all United States embassies, legations, consular offices, and other facilities abroad, including all military facilities and naval vessels and stations, as a mark of respect for the victims of gun violence perpetrated on October 1, 2015, in Roseburg, Oregon.

Flags elsewhere are also asked to be flown at half-staff as a sign of respect.