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Tips for a healthier home

Every household has its honey-do list, but ­inevitably you’re not always going to have time to cross off every project on the list. Rather than ­setting lofty goals that make it easy to procrastinate, the key to a productive and effective list is to be ­realistic. Start with the projects that will have an immediate effect on ­creating and maintaining ...Read More

Did you know that an un-programmed thermostat can waste at least 20 percent of your heating and cooling bill? This smart thermostat from Nest is among a new generation that does the programming for you.

Get smart about making energy savings easy

By B. Denise HawkinsStop. Look around your room. More than likely there is a programmable thermostat on the wall, a plug strip on the floor and a light bulb in your lamp. These are three of the most common products you can use to help reduce daily household energy costs. The trick is figuring out how to make them work ...Read More

EPA regulations to raise bills and cost jobs

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recently released regulations to limit carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions at new and now existing power plants that will lead to more expensive electricity for members of electric cooperatives. As not for profit, member-owned ­cooperatives we are concerned about the impact this will have on the price of electricity and our members’ bills. And we’re concerned ...Read More


Gifts from the land & water

I have long been fascinated with wild food foraging. Helping family members learn about wild edibles has developed into a hobby that has allowed us to experience, to a degree, how our ancestors lived off the land.Foraging for plants and hunting wild game are ancient patterns of human subsistence. For thousands of years, people survived in this manner. In 1972, ...Read More


Protecting animals for future generations

By definition, a zoo is a garden or park where wild animals are kept for exhibition; a collection of living animals usually for public display. And a zookeeper: one who maintains or cares for the animals in a zoo. Without a zoo there would be no zookeeper and without a zookeeper there would be no zoo.Every year, the third week ...Read More


Water Recreation and Electric Shock Drowning: Lucas’ Story

Everybody who knew eight-year-old Lucas Ritz was his friend. The bright, outgoing boy was well-known to everyone in his Scappoose, Oregon marina community. He shared his parents’ passion for boating and seeing new places and dreamed of becoming a boat captain.His father and mother, Kevin and Sheryl Ritz, were very safety conscious. The kids always wore life jackets and were ...Read More

The Prairie State Energy Campus.

Pursuing a responsible energy future

In just the last decade, generation and transmission ­cooperatives have invested more than $3.4 billion to reduce emissions and boost efficiency. They are ­planning billions of dollars more in further upgrades. Here in Illinois, Southern Illinois Power Cooperative and Prairie Power, Inc. joined six consumer-owned municipal ­agencies and invested $1 billion in emission control equipment at the Prairie State Generating ...Read More


Treasure hunts along the road

By Amy Higgins Road trip activities are often tedious and predictable: the license plate game, 10 minute pit stops, mounds of munchies and the occasional snooze. But there are ways to break up the monotony, get a little exercise and have fun. Try geocaching and letterboxing. These scavenger hunts aren’t new, but they aren’t as familiar as your ­traditional traveling ...Read More


Teach your children history by visiting Illinois’ past

History is a kind of introduction to more interesting people than we can possibly meet in our restricted lives; let us not neglect the opportunity.  ~ Dexter Perkins, Historian and Author History is like a great novel with its plot twists, characters, places and events. But unlike a good book, we can visit history. It’s all around us; as close ...Read More


Trash to treasure

You’ve probably heard the expression, one man’s trash is another man’s treasure, and that is increasingly true today. Many consumers are not only looking for a good deal, but also for “treasures” they can transform into something new for a fraction of the cost. The popularity of “trash to treasure” has created a demand for gently-used items, and businesses are ...Read More