Policy + Politics

An American landslide as a global metaphor.

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The National Integrated Drought Information System puts federal data in the hands of farmers, state officials, and businesses.

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Gov. Jerry Brown introduced a $US 687 million emergency spending bill Wednesday as his office works on comprehensive groundwater reform.

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Stop Work Most agency staff have been sent home. Press officers are not returning calls or emails. Only those in “excepted positions” – jobs required to protect human life and property – remain at work. Federal agencies such as the National Weather Service are still monitoring the nation’s water and weather and offering forecasts, but […]

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The U.S. Agency for International Development last week unveiled a new strategy for water that sets criteria for project selection and numeric targets for people served.

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Less money means fewer staff positions and fewer research projects at the nation’s universities.

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The justices on the United States Supreme Court pondered water law last week, as Oklahoma and a Texas water district presented arguments about water allocations under the Red River Compact. The justices asked many questions about the compact’s language and the intent behind an equal rights provision. They also dipped into matters of engineering, state […]

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The long road to information about a federal study of fracking’s effect on groundwater in Wyoming.

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Red River Compact

A water rights case to be argued in the U.S. Supreme Court this week has national implications.

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The most severe drought in 117 years of recordkeeping on the Great Plains came quickly, without warning, and without any dominant cause, according to an analysis by university and government scientists. It was largely not a result of climate change, they claim, and it was not the result of the drought conditions in Texas from […]

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Kansas Monument Rocks

When it comes to water management, Circle of Blue reporter Brett Walton thinks Kansas is a beacon on the plains.

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Kansas Geological Survey, infographic, ogallala aquifer, drought

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.

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Cotton irrigation dryland farming Ogallala Aquifer Texas

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.

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Yesterday Barbara Boxer (D-California) and Senate colleague David Vitter (R-Louisiana) submitted a new Water Resources Development Act. Last session of Congress, Boxer circulated a draft version of the bill, but it was not introduced. The act is a major piece of legislation. It authorizes billions in projects for the Army Corps of Engineers and sets […]

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Music lovers congregate at Hart Plaza Fountain in downtown Detroit during the Movement Electronic MusMusic lovers congregate at Hart Plaza Fountain in downtown Detroit during the Movement Electronic Music Festival in May 2012.ic Festival in May 2012.

There are many questions and few conclusions right now about Detroit’s water system.

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Consecutive hot, dry years have Texas lawmakers pondering billions of dollars in water projects.

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The freshmen have been initiated, the committees settled and the staffs filled. Now comes the law making. Here’s the first batch of water-related bills in the 113th Congress: Harry Reid (D-Nevada) reintroduced the farm bill that the Senate passed in June 2012. Debbie Stabenow (D-Michigan), the Senate Agriculture Committee chair, said that she would hold […]

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The third U.S. National Climate Assessment gets quickly to the point. “Climate change is already affecting the American people,” the opening sentence of the draft report declares. More critically, the report states that current U.S. actions that have reduced greenhouse gas emissions – the shift from coal to natural gas, and various state, local and […]

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USACE Sandy levee repair

Water utilities prepare for bigger storms and rising seas.

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The agreement marks a turn in Colorado River management.

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