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.
U.S. environmental regulators often consider water in mile-deep aquifers too deep for regular use, so they often grant permits allowing energy and mining companies to inject pollutants directly into the aquifers. Mexico City now plans to extract drinking water from a mile-deep aquifer of its own, ProPublica reported, challenging the premise of U.S. regulators’ pollution-permitting [...]
Africa Water service, as well as electricity and phone service, has been cut in Timbuktu, the latest casualty of the ongoing conflict in Mali, CNN reported. The Azawad National Liberation Movement (MNLA), a group active in northern Mali that opposes the government, blamed the outages on “terrorist” sabotage. Following a devastating drought in 2009, pastoral [...]
Last week, the Australian government approved a plan to increase the total volume of water reserved for environmental flows in the Murray-Darling Basin. Over the next 10 years, Bloomberg Businessweek reported, the government will spend $AUS 1.8 billion to save 450 gigaliters more water for the environment. More than one third of Australia’s food supply [...]
A theme of food and water waste reduction, especially in agriculture, characterizes a large number of speeches and events as World Water Week in Stockholm continues, according to Environmental News Service. Hurricane Isaac is not on track to hydrate drought-stricken areas in the Midwest, contrary to many farmers’ hopes. Instead, it may saturate and ruin [...]
Dr. Jay Famiglietti shows exactly how groundwater is depleted — from space. Working with data from the Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE) satellite system, Famiglietti studies significant changes to water levels in aquifers around the world. “We didn’t go into the satellite stuff thinking we would be tracking groundwater trends,” he says. “It’s just [...]
State Department Budget The State Department released the second volume of its fiscal year 2013 budget justification, a document that serves as a “blueprint” for the coming year. This volume explains foreign operations, including water, which the department calls a “cross-cutting” issue. Water is an essential part of presidential initiatives on health, on food, and [...]
Water Quality Environmental degradation, including waste water discharge that is harming fisheries, is the greatest threat to food security in Africa, Xinhua reported. Proposed regulations for ballast water discharge in the Great Lakes will not do enough to stop invasive species, according to environmental groups, Reuters reported. The groups want the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency [...]
A private company, Cadiz Inc. (Cadiz), has revived plans to mine groundwater underlying land in the delicate Eastern Mojave Desert. This project revives fundamental questions about how we manage our precious water resources, and in particular, whether in the 21st century it is appropriate, or even necessary, to use renewable water resources in a nonrenewable and unsustainable way, for short-term profit.
Arsenic Arsenic is tainting freshwater supplies in Mexico’s Laguna region, the country’s biggest milk producer, as dairy operations, upstream dams and climate change deplete aquifers, AlertNet reported. In Chile, people exposed to high levels of arsenic in their drinking water during the 1950s have a higher risk of cancer despite subsequent contamination control, according to [...]
Water management trails climate change on companies’ agenda, despite significant near-term risk and opportunity, according to the Carbon Disclosure Project’s (CDP) Water Disclosure global report. Two percent of the global gross domestic product (GDP) should be invested in 10 industries — including water, agriculture and energy — to start making the global economy more sustainable, [...]
By: Brett Walton, Writer Posted on Monday, February 28, 2011
Desert Energy Development Eagle Crest Energy is developing a 1,300-megawatt pumped storage hydroelectric project in southern California, south of Joshua Tree National Park. Sited at a decommissioned iron mine, the facility’s tiered reservoirs will help integrate nearby wind and solar power into the electrical grid. Water to fill the reservoirs will come from groundwater conveyed [...]