Today’s quick hits, June 21, 2021

River lawsuit dismissed: The Iowa Supreme Court dismissed, 4-3, a lawsuit by environmental groups that contended the state failed to protect water quality in the Raccoon River, a major source of drinking water for central Iowa. (Iowa Capital Dispatch)

Depth matters for carbon: The best approach to measuring soil carbon is to sample the entire crop-rooting zone, which is often deeper than the currently recommended 30 cm (12 inch) and to consider soil mass, rather than volume, said researchers. (CarbonPlan)

Fewer hemp farmers: The Kansas Agriculture Department issued 81 licenses to grow industrial hemp this year, down from 218 in 2020, a reflection of the challenge for processors to find a steady market for hemp fiber, oil and other products beyond the glutted market for CBD oil. (Kansas News Service)

Pilgrim’s gets bigger: Pilgrim’s Pride said it will buy the meat and meals business of Kerry Consumer Foods in Britain and Ireland for $952 million, which would position the company, majority-owned by JBS, “as a leading prepared foods and branded products player.” (Pilgrim’s)

Driest since 1976-77: Four years after a multi-year drought, California “has descended into dry conditions not seen since 1976-77,” exemplified by satellite images of the two largest reservoirs in the state, which are less than half their usual volume for this time of the year. (NASA Earth Observatory)