Mose Buchele, KUT

Senior Reporter, Energy & Environment

Mose is KUT's energy and environment reporter, previously under the StateImpact Texas project. He has been on staff at KUT since 2009, covering local and state issues.  He's has also worked as a blogger on politics and an education reporter at his hometown paper in Western Massachusetts. He holds masters degrees in Latin American Studies and Journalism from UT Austin.

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A flooded home in Houston
Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon / KUT

If you’re looking to buy a house in Texas, the homeowner is now required to tell you if it has ever flooded. Likewise, if you own a home that’s flooded, be prepared to disclose that under expanded state regulations that took effect this month.

A community meeting on the Kinder Morgan pipeline
Salvador Castro for KUT

A law went into effect in Texas this week that increases penalties for demonstrators who interfere with oil and gas pipelines and other pieces of "critical infrastructure."

Folks kayak and paddleboard on Lady Bird Lake
Julia Reihs / KUT

The City of Austin says toxic blue-green algae will likely stay in Lady Bird Lake until the weather cools off this fall. So far, it’s been blamed for the deaths of at least five dogs that swam in the lake, and Austin is not the only place dealing with the dangerous bacteria this summer.

Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

In Washington, D.C., on Thursday, the Environmental Protection Agency announced plans for a major rollback of rules aimed at reducing methane emissions from oil and gas infrastructure. In Texas, environmentalists and even some in the industry are arguing in favor of keeping the rules.

Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon / KUT

Toxic bacteria continue to pose a threat in Lady Bird Lake, according to recent city water testing. Austin's Watershed Protection Department says it's still finding toxic blooms of algae at Red Bud Isle, Barton Creek and downstream from Barton Springs Pool – and that it likely won't go away until mid-October.

Quinlin Talyor, lifeguard
Michael Minasi for KUT

The triple-digit heatwave hitting Austin is becoming one for the record books. On Wednesday, it became the fifth longest ever recorded in the city's history, and more hot days are expected.  

Waller Creek near Sixth Street.
Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon / KUT

What do you call the parks and greenspace along Waller Creek from the state Capitol to Lady Bird Lake? The Waller Creek Trail? The Waller Creek Greenbelt? The city and nonprofit that are redeveloping the area have a new idea. Now, they're calling it the “Waterloo Greenway.”

Kyle, Texas
Julia Reihs / KUT

Kinder Morgan has filed a legal complaint against the City of Kyle, arguing a pipeline safety ordinance it adopted last month is illegal. The lawsuit is the latest clash between the company and opponents of the natural gas pipeline it’s planning through Central Texas.

A bird feeder and birdhouse on Hill Country property that the pipeline would go through.
Julia Reihs / KUT

A new front has opened in the legal battle against a 430-mile natural gas pipeline planned through the Texas Hill Country, this time focusing on how the project will impact the endangered golden-cheeked warbler.

Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

This July is on track to be Earth’s hottest month ever recorded, and that spike in heat is part of a larger warming trend that could change the way governments and researchers measure extreme temperatures.

Max Shpak holds Caesar, a female red-tailed hawk
Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon / KUT

Stacie Ferguson’s commute can get repetitive: She leaves work, picks up the kids at day care and, often, gets stuck in traffic on her way to her South Austin home.

“Sometimes I’m sitting there for a little while and get a chance to kind of observe,” she said.

Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

You might have noticed the weather’s been cooler this year in Austin, at least relatively speaking. After all, it’s July and Austin hasn’t hit 100 degrees yet.

Julia Reihs / KUT

A Travis County judge has ruled construction on a natural gas pipeline through the Texas Hill Country can proceed. The state district court decision Tuesday marks a major setback for landowners and local governments that sued to stop energy company Kinder Morgan from using eminent domain to build the pipeline.

The control room at ERCOT headquarters
Julia Reihs / KUT

This summer, there's a higher likelihood than ever that Texas might not have enough electricity to go around. If you turn on the AC and nothing happens, you’ll want to know why. It helps to remember legendary Led Zeppelin drummer John Bonham.

Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

Solar power continues to grow in Texas, new research finds, and that growth is due in part to another renewable energy the state has in abundance: wind.

Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

After more than a year of negotiations with property owners over how to repair a landslide along Shoal Creek, the City of Austin is moving ahead with the project – but it could cost millions more than initially thought.

U.S. Coast Guard / Getty Images

A handful of environmental groups are taking the Trump administration to federal court over its rollback of regulations meant to prevent offshore oil spills.

Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon / KUT

Experts say carbon emissions need to be reduced and even removed from the atmosphere to avoid catastrophic climate change. Could carbon-neutral oil be a part of that? One company setting up shop in the West Texas oilfields says yes.

Wind turbines
Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon / KUT

The 2019 legislative session saw fights over renewable energy, climate resilience and pipeline construction. Now that the dust is settling on the field of battle, what do the results tell us about Texas lawmakers' priorities for energy and the environment?

Zebra mussels
Chase Fountan / Texas Parks and Wildlife Department

Invasive zebra mussels continue their takeover of Texas lakes and waterways: They've now spread to four more lakes in Central Texas, pushing the boundary of their southern expansion.

Gabriel C. Pérez

Austin Mayor Steve Adler wants you to know something.

Texas Department of Transportation

Last week, the Austin City Council voted to back the Green New Deal, a national plan to tackle climate change that would overhaul the U.S. economy and energy sector. It was a big gesture from a city that prides itself on its environmental leadership. But, critics say, that gesture was undercut by a vote some local leaders took earlier that week – one that would drastically expand Interstate 35.

Julia Reihs / KUT

A powerful storm dumped up to 7 inches of rain in parts of Central Texas on Friday and could be responsible for up to four deaths in the region. But, in one sense, Austin "got lucky," the city's floodplain administrator says: The storm caused much less neighborhood flooding than other recent heavy rainfalls.  

Rows of chairs in the House chamber of the Texas Capitol.
Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

On its face, you might think a bill to treat wastewater from oil and gas operations would get the support of environmental groups. But you'd be wrong.

Jellaluna via Flickr

Consumers could see a sharp rise in the cost of tomatoes if the U.S. Department of Commerce pulls out of a trade agreement it has maintained with Mexico since the 1990s. Experts say that price hike could have a ripple effect on other foods – even (gulp) pizza.

The Texas Vertebrate Paleontology Collection
Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

This is a story about 10-million-year-old bones. But it starts in the 1930s.

Mose Buchele / KUT

Capital Metro took a step Monday toward electrifying its bus fleet with the announcement of the location of a new bus-charging facility under construction in North Austin.

Nicholas Suan via Flickr

Central Texas can get pretty rainy in the spring, and I've always wondered why it often seems to rain in the middle of the night. It's like the weather is designed to keep me from getting sleep.

So, I asked meteorologist Burton Fitzsimmons if he could explain things. 

“Think about the hot, dry desert air that’s out there in West Texas, and here we have this very muggy, warm air [in Austin],” Fitzsimmons said. “Well, the dividing line between those two air masses is like a little front.”

Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

City of Austin staff think they’ve found a way to move forward with plans to stabilize land along Shoal Creek after a significant landslide there about a year ago. The process is complicated by the question of who will pay for it, though.

Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon / KUT

Natural gas is a valuable commodity in most of the world – but not in parts of Texas. Now, in West Texas, oil well operators will pay you to take their natural gas. The practice is called “negative pricing,” and it could change everything from the price of electricity to the use of renewable energy.

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