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coal seam gas

Pollution A coal seam gas operation in Australia’s Pilliga forest contaminated groundwater supplies with arsenic, lead and uranium after the facility’s storage ponds leaked, the Guardian reported. The contamination led to a $1,500 fine and calls from environmentalists and farmers to halt the operation, though the company says the groundwater was not part of a […]

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Water Quality Large blooms of algae in Florida’s Indian River Lagoon have destroyed sea grass beds and forced manatees to eat poisonous macro algae that can kill them, NPR reported. The algal blooms are thought to be the result of nutrient-rich water releases from Lake Okeechobee and seeping septic systems. Australia’s government is requiring environmental […]

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India Many residents in New Delhi, especially those living in unauthorized settlements and poorer neighborhoods, do not have access to a reliable source of piped drinking water despite the city’s adequate supply of water, The New York Times reported. This void in government service has created a profitable black market for companies that bring in […]

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Energy and Water Pumping water underground to produce geothermal energy or to hydraulically fracture rocks could lead to large—magnitude 4 or 5—earthquakes, according to recent studies, the Guardian reported. One study found a clear correlation between underground water injection and the frequency of earthquakes. Australia’s government must decide whether or not to require a full […]

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Federal Involvement in Water, Energy Concerns A newly passed law in Australia requires a federal expert committee to analyze any new coal seam gas and coal projects that affect water resources, increasing the federal government’s reach on water issues, Adelaide Now reported. The energy industry is pushing back against the law, saying that the oversight […]

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Scientists are trying to understand whether the drought that has scorched much of the United States this summer is a cut their water consumption, according to EnergyWire. A new study reveals an astronomical Climate change and a mining boom threaten to disrupt Mongolia’s economy, according to New Security Beat. A agriculture and the energy industry […]

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Massive hydrocarbon production has created worries over water use and pollution as the “Down Under” nation rises to the top of global exporters.

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A coal loader eats away at a mountain of black coal at the Port of Newcastle in New South Wales, Australia. In 2011, the mines, trains, and coal loading terminals here shipped about 114 million metric tons of coal on about 1,000 freighters, bringing billions of dollars in export earnings.

International demand and new technologies push nation to the top for hydrocarbon exports. But massive production has also created worries over water.

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Diminishing supplies of water, metals and biomass could slow the deployment of clean energy technologies by 2035, Reuters reported, citing a new study by the Stockholm Environment Institute and by business initiative 3C. Some low-carbon technologies use more water than conventional fuels. Read the policy brief to find out why cutting carbon emissions and saving […]

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South Australia has become the third Australian state to agree to the federal government’s tightened approvals process for future coal seam gas and large-scale coal mining projects, Platts reported. Water Security Germany has offered to help resolve the water disputes in Central Asia and to invest in water-saving solar and wind energy in the region, […]

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Dams on the tributaries of the Mekong River could have a bigger negative effect on fish biodiversity and food security than the hydropower stations on the main river, new research shows, according to the journal Nature. Extreme weather and climate change signal the emergence of a new normal that increases the risks at the intersections […]

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Energy A new study by the University of Texas Energy Institute has found no evidence that hydraulic fracturing is contaminating groundwater, Voice of America reported. According to the report, many problems associated with fracking are related to processes common to all gas and drilling operations, such as drill casing failures, yet more science is needed […]

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China plans to quadruple its desalination capacity by the end of 2015 in an effort to relieve chronic water shortages that threaten to upend its economic growth, China Daily reported. Meanwhile, Jordan is moving ahead with its Red Sea Water Desalination Project, which will extract 1.2 billion cubic meters of water from the sea, of […]

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Australia’s first law intended to protect prime agricultural land from mining has come into effect in Queensland, ABC reported. Though the law covers about 4 percent of the state’s land, critics say it will only apply to open-pit mining and not cover underground mining, exploration work or coal seam gas (coal-bed methane) production. Australia is […]

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The European Union’s environment committee voted to decrease the supply of emissions allowances in Europe’s emissions trading system in order to increase the price of carbon, EurActiv reported. The EU hopes the price hike will provide an incentive for investment in low-carbon technology. About 87 percent of the world’s population has access to improved drinking […]

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Australia’s fast-growing coal-seam gas industry is a “relatively short-term prospect” and may not be worth the cost to farmland and the environment, a according to an interim report for the Senate Inquiry into the impacts of coal seam gas in the Murray-Darling Basin, The Australian reported. The study recommends that coal-seam gas development be suspended […]

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Wind-generated electricity will cost the same as electricity from fossil fuels by 2016, according to a new study by Bloomberg New Energy Finance. Air pollution from aerosols like soot and dust can amplify droughts and floods, the Australian Broadcasting Corporation reported, citing a new study from the University of Maryland. The aerosols affect cloud formation, […]

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As the global population hit 7 billion yesterday — theoretically speaking, at least — the United Nations chose a newborn in the Philippines to symbolically mark the milestone. But how did the world get so big so fast? Here’s a great visualization by NPR that zips through 1,000 years of human history — from 300 […]

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After financing about $9.3 billion of hydropower in Africa, China is now heavily investing in other renewable technologies on the continent, according to Bloomberg and International Rivers. Meanwhile, Grist reported that hefty loans from the Chinese Development Bank are helping Chinese solar companies push U.S. solar firms out of the market. How did China come […]

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Hurricane Irene killed at least 28 people, caused an estimated $2.6 billion in damage, and cut electric power to more than 6 million homes and businesses across the eastern United States. Bloomberg summarizes the damage state by state. And more information from New York Magazine. United States In Texas, the driest spell in the state’s […]

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