OCI Solar Power thought of an idea that leaders there say is sheer genius. They've put sheep to work on the grounds of a solar farm on the far northeast side to keep the grass cut.
As solar panels soak up plenty of hot Texas sunshine, there's plenty landscaping work to do at the Alamo 2 Solar Farm off Binz-Engleman near North Foster Road. But instead of people, OCI Solar Power is employing lambscapers.
Fronteras: The USDA has lifted a ban on inspectors working in Mexico, which could invigorate a cattle trade that has been hurt in both countries. We look at how one border city provides a model for solar power in Texas. State health officials have alerted the CDC about conditions in border facilities where thousands of Central American minors are being detained. Commentator Yvette Benavides takes us inside an immigration court room in San Antonio where these children and teens are making their cases.
Agriculture forecasters at Texas A&M AgriLife Extension are predicting a medium-size pecan crop for the state in 2014. Experts say this year’s production will be better than the last three, but still under capacity.
The Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service estimates farmers will produce between 50 million and 55 million pounds of pecans in 2014.
A new study by Harvard University explains a little more about colony collapse disorder (CCD), the name given to the sudden and widespread die-off of the honeybees that our food supply depends on for pollination.
The findings may also explain why Texas bee hives are doing better than those in other parts of the country.
Scientists have suspected for some time that a class of pesticides known as neonicotinoids is responsible for CCD.
Fronteras: If you're questioned by law enforcement at a traffic stop, what are you required to answer? As demographics change across the nation and in Texas, there’s growing concern about Alzheimer’s disease among Mexican-Americans—a population that continues to age. More minors from south of the border are making the dangerous journey to the U.S. illegally and alone. We visit Joint Base San Antonio Lackland where many of those minors are being housed.
Fronteras: The Democrat facing newly-nominated Republican Dan Patrick in the Texas lieutenant governor race says Sen. Patrick’s pledge to campaign in the minority community is “insulting.” New EPA rules to cut carbon emissions are expected to be unveiled soon. The new rules are expected to spur the use of a so-called clean coal technology. There are fewer than 100 fluent speakers of Kumeyaay left in Southern California and northern Baja California, where they once dominated. Efforts are now underway to preserve the endangered language.
In the last five years the number of olive trees in Texas has increased rapidly, but even with tremendous growth several farmers say it’s not enough to call it the next oil boom.
Jim Henry, a pioneer in farming olives and founder of the Texas Olive Oil Council, said in the mid-1990s there were only a handful of trees, but in 2010 that number jumped to over 800,000. Today, Henry said, there are just over a million olive trees in Texas, which in 2013 produced an estimated 30,000-40,000 gallons of oil.
The drought that caused several Texas ranchers to sell off their herds in the past three years is also a culprit in the current surge in red meat prices.
According to several economists the prices are setting records. The demand for beef in Asia as well as increased feed prices -- as corn increasingly heads to ethanol refiners -- are also to blame for the current state of high prices.
After their winter trip south, Mexican free-tailed bats are returning to the Bracken Bat Cave in Central Texas in larger numbers, which is good news for South Texas agriculture.
Millions of Mexican free-tailed bats make their summer home at the Bracken Cave just north of San Antonio, and farmers in South Texas rely on them to swarm across their farmland and eat the insects that can destroy crops.
Fronteras: The energy boom in Texas and New Mexico is inadvertently compromising the jet-black night skies that astronomers need to do their research. After several decades in the doldrums, the Mexican film industry is seeing some light on the horizon. There’s been a rise of federal immigration crimes -- we speak to an expert from Pew Research about what’s driving that growth. Farmers and ranchers from across the nation are calling for action on immigration reform and the Texas Farm Bureau is asking Congress to “get ‘er done” to help farmers compete.