Irrigation

Mining An international World Bank tribunal in Washington D.C. is hearing final arguments this week in a court case between El Salvador and Australian mining company OceanaGold, which is suing the country for not permitting a gold mine that El Salvador says will pollute waterways, Inter Press Service reported. OceanaGold is asking for more than […]

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The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration made final new rules that will help prevent unused medications from contaminating waterways. Pharmacies are now authorized to collect unwanted narcotics, stimulants, and other “controlled substances.” Before, these pills had to be turned over to law enforcement officials. One-day drug collection events have grown in popularity. Clean water advocates are […]

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Farmers want to know the economic and social ramifications of reducing groundwater use.

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Water Dispute The Russian Republic of Dagestan has accused neighboring Azerbaijan of taking more than its allotted share of water from the Samur River, leaving Dagestan with inadequate supplies for irrigation, Radio Free Europe reported. Azerbaijan, however, says a persistent drought has resulted in falling water levels in the river. Africa Uganda’s National Water and […]

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Farmers are guzzling groundwater while wells of families run dry.

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Californians are taking less water out of rivers, lakes, and aquifers.

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India will spend $US 1 billion by 2017 to clean up waterways and make more water available for irrigation, Bloomberg News reported. Government officials say the plan will allow an additional 500,000 hectares of land to be irrigated. Climate Change Water supplies in some of Asia’s major rivers may be at risk as glaciers on […]

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Irrigated agriculture’s march into Midwest and South could increase competition for water.

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Agriculture More than half of the fertilizer applied to farmland globally is unnecessary, while 8 to 15 percent of the water used is wasted, according to a new study published in the journal Science, the Guardian reported. Better use of resources could help current farmland produce enough food to feed 3 billion more people, the […]

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Water Shortages India’s monsoon has so far delivered 36 percent less rain than average, and reservoir levels are below their 10-year averages, according to water officials, Bloomberg News reported. If the monsoon continues to perform poorly and dry conditions are compounded by an El Nino weather event, 333 million people in six states could face […]

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Satisfaction rates with local water quality have stayed consistent for the past five years, with 71 percent of people surveyed worldwide saying that they were satisfied in 2013, according to a newly released Gallup poll. One area of the world where satisfaction rates have not improved is sub-Saharan Africa, where only 50 percent of respondents […]

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Human rights groups have sent a report to the United Nations arguing that water shutoffs by the Detroit Water and Sewerage Department are violating the human right to water, the Detroit News reported. Half of the city’s water accounts are overdue, and the city has so far shut off 4,500 of the 46,000 customers that […]

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Hydro Resources, a well-drilling contractor, works around the clock to punch new holes in the Ogallala Aquifer in Kansas. The Ogallala, the primary water source in the Great Plains, is declining because billions of gallons are pumped out each year to irrigate corn, soybeans, wheat, and cotton.

A plan to reduce water use by 20 percent was voted down last week.

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The Federal Reserve’s assessment of current economic conditions, known as the beige book, notes that drought is affecting food prices and crop production. With cattle stocks the lowest in decades, beef prices are expected to rise, as are food prices more broadly because of California’s drought, the Fed claims. In Texas, wheat is in poor […]

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Energy & Natural Resources As many as 15,000 people, many of them Q’eqchi Mayans, will be displaced by the construction of a $US 337 million hydropower project in Guatemala, the Guardian reported. The Xalalá dam would be the second largest in the country, and the government has has vowed to build the project despite local […]

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Food prices set to climb as production of wheat and other staple crops is cut.

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The U.S. Department of Agriculture brought a bounty of farm data to the public market on Friday when it released the 2012 agriculture census. Published every five years, the census is a trove of information down to the county level on production practices, farm economics, and rural demographics. Being a water news site, Circle of […]

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Farm data galore – by county and state, as well as nationally.

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India’s government is predicting a normal monsoon season this year, with rains at 96 percent of a 50-year average, Bloomberg News reported. The possibility of an El Niño weather pattern forming this summer is not expected to affect the rains, though it has caused droughts in the past. China The quality of groundwater in China […]

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Pollution Heavy metals such as arsenic, cadmium and nickel are some of the most common pollutants contaminating approximately 19 percent of arable land in China, according to an official report, The Wall Street Journal reported. The contaminants are deposited in the soil by water and air, and some of the most polluted areas are in […]

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