Texas

Water Governance Argentina plans to cut subsidies for natural gas and water by 20 percent this year, The Wall Street Journal reported. The cuts, which exempt some industrial and residential users, are meant to save as much as $US 1.6 billion to fund utility costs and social programs. A draft law in Spain could require […]

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Hydropower Pakistan aims to develop hydropower dams capable of producing 13,000 megawatts of electricity, which would increase the country’s hydropower output by almost eight times, AlertNet reported, citing government officials. Pakistan currently experiences frequent power outages due to demand outstripping supply, and the country’s industrial sector has suffered as a result. A drought in Sri […]

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James Clapper, director of national intelligence, presented the 2014 assessment of global security threats to the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence last week. For the fourth consecutive report, a section is dedicated to water. “Risks to freshwater supplies – due to shortages, poor quality, floods, and climate change – are growing,” according to the 31-page […]

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Climate change, dam construction, irrigation and groundwater use are causing water supplies in Iran to shrink rapidly, a phenomenon epitomized by the near disappearance of Lake Urmia, The New York Times reported. Lake Urmia is estimated to contain just 5 percent of the water it once held, and though it is a saltwater lake, Iran’s […]

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Water Pollution A chemical foaming agent used to process coal spilled into the Elk River in Charleston, West Virginia Friday, prompting a tap water ban for approximately 300,000 people and the declaration of a state and federal disaster, CBS News reported. Stores in the area quickly sold out of bottled water, and the National Guard […]

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Water Contamination Water pollution caused by natural gas and oil drilling operations may be more common than advertised, with cases confirmed in Ohio, Pennsylvania, Texas, and West Virginia, according to an Associated Press review of complaints submitted to the states. The review also found that the states varied greatly in the way they reported possible […]

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In a normal week, I use this space to look back at U.S. government water news from the seven days that have just passed. Today, however, I turn the lens in the opposite direction. These are the policies, reports, and decisions to anticipate in 2014, organized chronologically, more or less. Great Lakes The government gets […]

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Water and Energy At the binational Itaipú hydropower dam on the Paraná River between Brazil and Paraguay, environmental and social activists are working with energy companies to protect and restore the watershed for the benefit of residents and future power generation, Inter Press Service reported. Though activists are not completely satisfied with the program, they […]

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Dropping When It’s Hot The Santa Ana watershed, home to 6 million people in Southern California, faces a number of threats to its water supply because of climate change, according to a comprehensive Bureau of Reclamation study. River flows and precipitation will decrease, as will the amount of water infiltrating the basin’s aquifers, which provide […]

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As more and more land is converted to dairy farms, New Zealand’s waterways face increasing risk from harmful algal blooms and excessive weed growth, according to a report from the country’s parliamentary commissioner for the environment, Xinhua reported. A boom in the dairy industry has been fueled by the developing world’s growing demand for dairy […]

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Bottled Water With sales of bottled water in China expected to reach $US 16 billion by 2017, some economists worry that government involvement in the industry may encourage lower safety standards as local authorities compete to attract investment, Business Insider reported. China recently announced reforms aimed at cleaning up its food and water supplies. An […]

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Twitter of Brett and Guardian

Rainwater harvesting, a disruptive idea, catches on with businesses. CoB reporter Brett Walton responds to a recent article in the Guardian.

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Average levels of global carbon dioxide reached another record high in 2012, according to results published Wednesday by the United Nations World Meteorological Organization, the Guardian reported. Climate change driven by rising CO2 levels is expected to create more frequent and severe droughts and storms around the world. United States Texas will now be able […]

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Conservation A new coal plant planned by Bangladesh and India could harm the ecologically sensitive Sundarbans—the world’s largest mangrove forest, Yale Environment 360 reported. While Bangladesh’s government argues that the plant will generate much needed electricity, conservations worry that the vast amounts of water it would withdraw and release could destroy the mangroves and the […]

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©JGanter_Austin_2013_G3_0395.JPG

With the amount of reliable water in reservoirs shrinking, water agencies set sights on groundwater transfers and more reservoirs.

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Mining Barrick Gold Corp, the company behind the massive $US 8.5 billion Pascua-Lama gold mine project on the Argentina-Chile border, said it is suspending construction at the site, Reuters reported. The mine has faced stiff opposition and legal battles due to concerns about its effect on glaciers and water supplies. In Indonesia, coal’s “last frontier” […]

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SoybeanHarvest1000

Reporter Brett Walton recently visited the plains states of Kansas and Texas, finding a difference of opinion on how to best use limited water supplies.

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A movement to create recreation opportunities on New York City waterways that have long been polluted by industrial waste is also spurring environmental cleanups and education, The New York Times reported. The North Brooklyn Boat Club, for example, is revitalizing a portion of Newton Creek, a Superfund site in which the club paddles. Water and […]

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Water Contamination The Lock the Gate alliance in Australia finds that of 43 coal and gas developments that would potentially affect water supplies in the country, only four have had the government’s “water-trigger” assessment applied to them, The Guardian reported. “The states have really let the side down badly on water quality,” said Carmel Flint, campaign coordinator with Lock […]

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Countries in East Africa are planning a $US 19.5 million data project to better manage water usage between farmers, All Africa reported. To be completed by 2015, the project will contain publicly-accessible information on water levels, temperatures, flows, quality and quantity across nine countries. Water Supply Communities facing drought in the Southwest have begun pressuring residents […]

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