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Dams

The Global Rundown Ethiopia is flexing its hydropower muscles, causing downstream disgruntlement for its neighbors to both the north and south. Another African country on a dam planning spree is Zimbabwe; more water storage is needed to cope with recent flood-and-drought rainfall cycles. Vietnam is looking at ways to save water when growing rice, one […]

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Health Africa Access to clean water is crucial for both treating Ebola patients in Africa and preventing the spread of the disease, according to the aid agency UNICEF, RT reported. One patient needs an estimated 150 liters of clean water a day, approximately 10 times the amount typically available per capita in Liberia. Water Supply […]

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Water Infrastructure Australia, Asia, Africa, Middle East Australia is planning to build more dams and invest in as many as 30 irrigation schemes to provide more water for agricultural production, Reuters reported, citing a new government paper. Per capita water availability from the country’s existing dams has declined more than 20 percent since 1980. As […]

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Water Scarcity Central Asian nations, as a region, have the highest per capita water use in the world but also the highest water use per dollar of gross domestic product, according to a report published in Nature, Eurasianet reported. The article concludes that water scarcity is not as much a problem as water waste in […]

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OlmsteadProject590

Ohio River project is departure for funds-starved U.S. water infrastructure installations.

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Stockholm hosts largest-ever international conference on global contest for water and energy.

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Mining Approximately 10 million gallons of wastewater spilled from northern Mexico’s Buenavista copper mine last week, contaminating portions of the Bacanuchi and Sonora rivers, the Associated Press reported. The rivers provide water to a number of cities and towns in the region, including Hermosillo, the capital of Sonora state. The failure of a tailings dam […]

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The Army Corps of Engineers will for the first time track and disclose oil pollution and oil spills from the machinery used in eight dams on the Columbia and Snake rivers, the Associated Press reports. The agreement, covering dams in Oregon and Washington, is part of a legal settlement with Columbia Riverkeeper, an environmental group, […]

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Water Scarcity Agricultural diversions, dams and climate change have led to the loss of 85 percent of the water in Lake Urmia, a lake that once covered 5,000 square kilometers, Bloomberg News reported. Iran’s president said the country is initiating efforts to restore the lake, which are expected to take 10 to 15 years to […]

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The decision pits energy development against river protection in one of the world’s evocative places.

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The Chilean government will decide June 10 whether to proceed with HidroAysen, a group of five dams on two rivers in Patagonia. The Santiago Times reports that the project developers could sue to recover some of the $US 320 million already invested if the government vetoes the dams. Flood Control A water reform law in […]

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SanLuis1000

State leaders face infrastructure decisions now that will have consequences for decades.

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Hydropower Environmental groups have raised concerns that the population of Irawaddy dolphins in the Mekong River—which now consists of an estimated 85 individuals—will disappear if construction of a dam on the river is completed, Time reported. A report from the World Wildlife Fund says that explosions during the dam’s construction could kill dolphins in the […]

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Leaks of contaminated water from Japan’s Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, which was damaged by an earthquake and tsunami three years ago, are still the biggest problem facing the site’s cleanup, the Associated Press reported. Without improved water management that can keep the leaks out of the soil, groundwater and ocean, residents who evacuated the […]

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Building a long-debated reservoir in the Sierra Nevada foothills 40 kilometers (25 miles) northeast of Fresno would improve river habitat for salmon but would provide little additional water for farmers and cities, according to a Bureau of Reclamation feasibility report. The $US 2.6 billion Temperance Flat Dam would create a reservoir with a capacity of […]

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Weather It is becoming more likely that an El Niño weather pattern will form this year, potentially bringing severe drought to places like Australia and India while bringing heavy rains and floods to the Midwest United States and Brazil, Reuters reported. El Niño is caused when surface water temperatures increase in the Pacific Ocean. Hydropower […]

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Drinking Water An initiative to install water filters in 65,000 restaurants in Mexico City aims to improve the safety of drinking water, and consumers’ confidence in it, the Associated Press reported. The city’s drinking water has a bad reputation for being contaminated, which experts say often happens in the distribution systems between water treatment plants […]

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After a period of budget gloom, the $US 1 trillion spending bill approved by the House and Senate last week brought a little cheer to water programs, which fared relatively well. Some of the harshest sequestration cuts have been restored. The bill will add $US 10 million to the U.S. Geological Survey’s water resources program, […]

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Climate Change Under a worse-case scenario in which global temperatures rise 4 degrees Celsius, most of the world would experience interrelated stresses to water, agriculture, ecosystems, and public health, with 18 percent of the population experiencing “severe pressure” in each category, according to a study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, […]

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Increase the Flows The Army Corps of Engineers has released a draft report on how it plans to implement a $US 1.7 billion project to revive the Florida Everglades. In essence, the corps will send more water south from Lake Okeechobee, treat it to remove phosphorous, and let it drain slowly to mimic natural filtration […]

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