Droughts, floods and other natural disasters are creating huge economic losses around the world, totaling about $US 2.5 trillion this century, according to estimates by the United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction, Bloomberg BNA reported. UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon urged businesses to take steps to reduce disaster risk exposure when investing in new buildings and infrastructure.
Affordable flood insurance will remain available to current homeowners in high flood-risk areas of the United Kingdom until the end of July, one month after a deal between the government and insurance companies expires, the Guardian reported. Beyond this deadline, coverage policies and rates could change dramatically in the absence of a new deal.
South Africa and Lesotho are in the process of approving the second phase of the Lesotho Highlands Water Project, Business Day Live reported. The $US 1.3 billion project, to be paid for by South Africa, will increase water supply for South Africa and hydropower generation for Lesotho when it is completed in 2020.
International funding for humanitarian aid in Yemen is necessary for the country to stabilize and successfully recover from its revolution, according to a top United Nations official in the country, Reuters reported. One major problem Yemen faces is water scarcity—more than half of the population lacks access to safe drinking water, the report said.
The study runs counter to the conventional wisdom about deforestation’s effects on the water cycle.
Groundwater depletion in the United States has accelerated over the last decade, according to the U.S. Geological Survey, contributing to both localized problems and global issues, like sea level rise.
Energy companies should provide better data on fracking water use, and investors should push for quantifiable water targets, according to a sustainable investing advocacy group.
Water meters allow for greater equity of supply, but traditionally have been feared because of possible implications toward water utility privatization. But the tides are turning around the world, and water meters are increasingly being seen in a positive light.
Transpiration from plants dominates the terrestrial water cycle.
A water rights case to be argued in the U.S. Supreme Court this week has national implications.
Scarce surface water supplies will lead to an active market, research firm says.
As they have been doing for decades, political leaders and water managers in Kansas are upending Western water law traditions that originated before the state was even part of the Union.
Southern farmers are making changes now to wean themselves from the Ogallala Aquifer, a water source that gave rise to industrial agriculture and modern life on its plains.
U.S. consumers have just started to feel the effects of last summer’s drought at the supermarket. Prices are expected to continue increasing throughout 2013.
Though corn acreage is forecasted to rise slightly over last year's planting, the biggest jump is predicted for sorghum, which uses less water.
For World Water Day 2013, Skoll World Forum and Circle of Blue asked four of the world’s leading water experts to weigh in. Here is what J. Carl Ganter, director of Circle of Blue, had to say about water's connection to 21st-century journalism.
Researchers see great promise in eDNA testing to detect invasive and rare species at low abundance — including invasive Asian carp — but refining the tool is a long process.
The American Society of Civil Engineers says that more money needs to be spent on infrastructure.
For World Water Day 2013, Skoll World Forum and Circle of Blue asked four of the world’s leading water experts to weigh in. Here is what Michel Jarraud, chair of UN-Water and Secretary-General of the World Meteorological Organization, had to say about the potential for cooperation around water.
A short history lesson about water shortage, water wars, and drought in the United States.
Except for energy, virtually every other feature of Qatar's national existence comes from someplace else.
In much of the Corn Belt, too much rain has left fields too soggy to sow.
An arresting array of architecture alongside a sea burdened by rising concern about how development affects ecological and economic security.
Circle of Blue's director J. Carl Ganter and senior editor Keith Schneider find that, in this country of just under 2 million, desert extremes meet a high-octane economy, testing both the limits and responses to the competition between water, food, and energy.
Circle of Blue intern Jinah Park summarizes the first three weeks of spring at the Traverse City office.
A U.S. Senate hearing on drought and energy provided some statements to ponder.
The long road to information about a federal study of fracking’s effect on groundwater in Wyoming.
The four days of shock and outrage in Boston — which started on Monday with the Boston Marathon bombings and climaxed on Friday in Watertown with a flurry of bullets — was history in the making. Circle of Blue's Keith Schneider was there for part of it.
Circle of Blue's senior editor Keith Schneider spent Earth Day on the East Coast, reflecting on the celebration's past accomplishments and future goals.
Over the last decade, Azzam Alwash has helped revived Iraq’s legendary marshes.
With her recent move from Alabama to Hawaii, Circle of Blue reporter Codi Yeager-Kozacek finds that, in the middle of an ocean, freshwater challenges abound.
When it comes to water management, Circle of Blue reporter Brett Walton thinks Kansas is a beacon on the plains.
Canada province pursues a new energy production path.
Think you have what it takes to be a Circle of Blue intern?
Learn more about the history of trading water in Australia's three markets in this infographic.
Click through the interactive infographic to see how China, the world’s largest nation and second-largest economy, faces multiple challenges for sustaining its water supply.
Click through the interactive infographic to see how China, the world’s largest nation and second-largest economy, races to meet rising demand for energy.
Click through the interactive infographic to see how China, the world’s largest nation and second-largest economy, has shifted its bread baskets to the north.
How do freshwater flows — or lack thereof — affect the marine life downstream?
It is not clear whether any of the new policy, planning, and supply initiatives are making a difference.
How will predicted changes to water levels and water temperatures affect the future of this region that is home to 8 million people?
Much goes into producing a corn crop and much comes out.
The NRDC predicts that the G20 will produce less than 4 percent from renewables by 2015 and 6 percent by 2020, up from only 2.6 percent currently and 0.86 percent in 2002.
Breaking down the history of water privatization in the Philipine capital of Manila, this infographic explores the city's varied success with privatization using a timeline and a map.
The price that Americans pay for water is rising faster than the cost of any other utility service in the United States — be it gas, electricity, or telephone charges.
The price of water can be influenced by the supply sources and systems, in addition to the number of users who are sharing these water resources and the burden to pay for the supply system's maintenance.
Agriculture is the largest water user in Australia. Where do other sectors like mining, manufacturing, and household use fall?
The country already has major water transfer projects moving 2,110 million cubic meters (557 billion gallons). Just two weeks ago, Iran began construction on a new $US 1.5 billion project that will transfer more water from the Caspian Sea.
The state’s water is at risk from 9,100 leaking underground storage tanks, second most in the United States.
Dennis Nelson grew up on his family’s North Dakota farm, where the groundwater well barely supplied their basic needs. As a child, he didn’t know why the water was scarce when their land was surrounded by wetlands, or “prairie potholes,” as he calls them. “I simply couldn’t make the connection at a young age about [...]
For more than 15 years, Stacey Travis was a television producer for networks like FOX, A&E, and AMC. Until, that is, she drastically switched careers in 2006, when doctors in Uganda and South Sudan told her about the water-related illnesses that plague these nations. Travis felt compelled to help and soon after founded Drop In [...]
Can something be made of nothing? According to the research of 16-year-old Ajay Krishnan, the answer is yes. A research enthusiast since the sixth grade, Krishnan — now a junior at Oregon Episcopal School — found a way to produce hydrogen gas from wastewater utilizing microbial electrolysis cells. For his work in renewable energy, Krishnan [...]
While working as an editor and writer at COLORS Magazine, Rose George was assigned to work on Cacas, a coffee table book featuring photographs of animal and human feces, for which “caca” is slang. Through the project, she discovered Sulabh International, an organization in India that provides public toilets and works to liberate those whose [...]
Wine turned Peter Thum to water. While working on a project in South Africa involving two wineries, Thum saw the difficulties that many people experienced just trying to get clean water every day. “I did a bit of research and began to see the size and magnitude of this problem,” he says. So he decided [...]
“We cannot say that rain is not interesting just because we can dig wells,” says Vessela Monta, a civil engineer by trade who began working with the International Rainwater Harvesting Alliance (IRHA) in 2002. Some resources — like the availability of harvestable rainwater — get forgotten when discussing sustainability, but not to Monta. She points [...]
Guyana means “land of many waters” in a native Amerindian language, but it also houses one of the most pristine rainforests left in existence, the Iwokrama. In 1996, Guyana and the Commonwealth of Nations established an organization of the same name. According to Iwokrama resident scientist Isabella Bovolo, the organization aims to fill large data [...]
In 2007, from 5,600 meters atop the north side of Mount Everest, explorer David Breashears recalls how he was “astonished” by what he saw and “shocked” that he hadn’t been more aware of the state of this Tibetan glacier. Breashears was on a comparative photography assignment to match a photo from 1921 with the modern [...]
Erin Huber grew up in Cleveland, Ohio, near the Great Lakes, where clean fresh water is abundant and tap water is sometimes taken for granted. As a humanitarian and an environmentalist, Huber spearheaded rooftop gardens and farmers’ markets, but eventually honed her focus to water. Huber founded the Drink Local Drink Tap (DLDT) campaign in [...]
Rohini Nilekani began her career as a journalist and writer. But upon marrying Nadan Nilekani — co-founder of the Indian tech-consulting firm Infosys — and coming into some money, she sought a cause to support financially. “I was looking for an area that would make sense to me and that would also have some kind [...]
Dr. Chris Groves spends a lot of his time going underground into caves carved by eons of water flow. Once a boy with an interest in rocks, today Groves is a world-renowned cave and limestone karst expert who directs the Hoffman Environmental Research Institute at Western Kentucky University. “It was the only practical way to [...]
Lori Pottinger advocates for rural communities that are at risk of being displaced by dam construction. She says that residents are not always aware of the extent of cultural and lifestyle adjustments they will have to make — or the option of resisting development. “They’re giving their all, and then they’re getting nothing from these [...]
Innovation started early for incoming Stanford University freshman Kunal Sangani. At just 17, he was named the U.S. finalist for the Stockholm Junior Water Prize for his project about the environmental effects of hydraulic fracturing (also known as “fracking”). A native of Syracuse, New York, where intense discussion about fracking led to a moratorium on [...]
Ed Wargin set out almost 17 years ago to document the Great Lakes, and he’s almost finished. The Fresh Coast Project is an effort to document the Great Lakes as a single unit. “I have felt through the years that we needed a solitary type of message, that we needed to look at the Great [...]
Brian McSorley, Oxfam’s humanitarian coordinator, promotes water, sanitation, and hygiene programs in Northern Kenya. This includes Dadaab refugee camp, where 88,000 people rely on Oxfam to provide facilities. “Water keeps us alive. But get too little, or too much, or the wrong kind, and results can be catastrophic — drought, floods, crop failure, children dying [...]
The U.S. Drought Monitor and Seasonal Outlook report the most current drought conditions and forecast, courtesy of NOAA, et al.