Texas Standard for July 5, 2022: Prairie dogs could be good for cattle, actually

Generally speaking, the prairie dog and the Texas rancher are not allies – but new research is challenging old assumptions about their relationship. Also: abortion and gun violence, two issues in focus for the nation, could carry a lot of weight in Texas come November. And: The Texas GOP is pushing for more changes to the state’s voting laws, limiting early voting and access for the elderly.

Those stories and much more today on the Texas Standard:

By Texas StandardJuly 5, 2022 9:42 am,

Here are the stories on Texas Standard for Tuesday, July 5, 2022:

How abortion may impact the race for Texas governor

The Texas Supreme Court has ruled in favor of Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, who claims the state’s 1925 abortion ban, prior to Roe v. Wade, is the law of the land in Texas. It’s the latest sign of how abortion will effect political races in a big election year. Mark Jones, political science professor at the James A. Baker Institute for Public Policy and faculty director of the global affairs program at Rice University, joins with more.

‘We need to be making plans now.’ LGBTQ Texans reconsider their future in the state

The U.S. Supreme Court’s decision nullifying the constitutional right to abortion is only the latest worrying sign for LGBTQ families in Texas. And the pressure isn’t letting up: At least one justice favors reversing legal protections for same-sex intimacy and marriage. As KERA’s Bret Jaspers reports, queer families are taking steps to protect themselves.

Who will regulate CO2 injection wells in Texas?

Carbon capture and sequestration will likely play a part in efforts to slow the impacts of global warming. That means there could be a lot more CO2 injection wells dug in the coming decades — especially in Texas. But who will regulate those wells? It’s still an open question. KUT’s Mose Buchele reports.

Prairie dogs could be good for cattle, actually

Generally speaking, the prairie dog and the Texas rancher are not allies. Conventional wisdom holds that the prairie dog is a nuisance to be eradicated, as they compete for the same grass that cattle eat, and stepping in a prairie dog hole is a great way for a cow to break a leg. But new research challenges these old assumptions. Cullom Simpson, wildlife biologist with the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, joins us with the latest.

The Large Hadron Collider is back online. Can you feel it? ⚛️

The world’s most powerful particle accelerator – the Large Hadron Collider –  came back online last week after a three-year break. The massive machine, located at CERN in Switzerland, was upgraded and renovated during that time. We’ll hear from Peter Onyisi, one of the many scientists who use the LHC to research the nature of the universe. He’s a UT-Austin physics professor and member of the ATLAS Experiment, a team using the LHC to explore high-energy physics. 

New pet book celebrates art and poetry

The book “Pet Poems” is more than just pets and animals – it’s also about exploring ideas through adversity and silliness. Hatched up during the first few months of the pandemic, the book accentuates artist Amanda Hoxworth’s bright and colorful watercolor paintings with poet Sean Petrie’s impactful and fun rhythm.

Opposition prompts San Antonio to adjust historic restoration plans affecting spiritually and environmentally significant trees

The San Antonio River, also known as Yanaguana, has been spiritually significant to Indigenous people for thousands of years. The river runs through Brackenridge Park and gives life to native wildlife and plants, including the huge trees that shade the riverbanks. Now a city initiative to restore the historic colonial structures of the park requires the removal or relocation of at least 62 trees – and some indigenous people are fighting to protect them. KACU’s Sheridan Wood reports.

Texas Republicans eye further voting restrictions next legislative session

Texas Republican Party leaders continue to promote false claims the 2020 presidential election was “stolen” from former President Donald Trump – and during their convention last month, members overwhelmingly voted to make election changes the party’s No. 1 priority. As the Houston Chronicle reports, this means they want laws passed in the next legislative session that would further restrict voting. Houston Chronicle Austin bureau reporter Jeremy Wallace joins us with the story.

All this, plus the Texas Newsroom’s state roundup and Wells Dunbar with the Talk of Texas.

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