water-energy nexus

A new Department of Energy report on the connections between water and energy marks a path for the department’s research into the twinned challenges. Between phrases such as “opportunity space” and “technology continuum” the authors argue that the department’s role is three-fold: researching the technologies that will improve efficiencies and allow polluted waters to be […]

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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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Chinahaze_tmo_2013341

Did you miss Circle of Blue’s reporting on how cleaning up the power sector – namely coal – and reducing energy demand would clear the air and provide water benefits? Not to worry; Brett Walton gives an update on the current smog situation and how a recent report may provide solutions.

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A Chinese researcher reveals massive groundwater use at a coal-to-liquids plant in dry Inner Mongolia.

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Circle of Blue’s Keith Schneider reports from Beijing on discussions about China’s resource challenge.

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Water and Energy To improve decision-making about water and energy, researchers at Harvard University’s Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs have developed a method for analyzing links between countries’ water and energy resources, as well as the institutions and stakeholders that manage these resources. Their study, which applies the method to Jordan, was published […]

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FrackMap_Ceres

Energy companies should provide better data on fracking water use, and investors should push for quantifiable water targets, according to a sustainable investing advocacy group.

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A U.S. Senate hearing on drought and energy provided some statements to ponder.

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When a Greenpeace China rapid response team ventured to a chemical spill site in the Shanxi province, they found that the area’s water supply was dwindling rapidly to support the growing coal production there, reports The New York Times. Much like the water-energy nexus story that Circle of Blue uncovered in other Northern Chinese provinces, […]

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Smart water meters—digital meters that measure usage and transmit data wirelessly—are coming under fire from opponents across the U.S. They argue that high up-front costs and more accurate readings will push water utility rates up, USA Today reported, without any lasting benefits for most. Water as Power Every gallon of fuel pumped into cars requires […]

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The Bureau of Land Management will open some 274,000 hectares (677,000 acres) of public land in three Western states for oil shale and tar sands research, development and demonstration leases, according to a broad federal environmental review. Companies must submit an application to explore on these lands, which, unlike for oil and gas leases, will […]

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Sometime this week, the House of Representatives will consider H.R. 3409, which its sponsor, an Ohio Republican, has dubbed the Stop the War on Coal Act of 2012. The bill would prevent the Interior Department from issuing regulations until December 2013 that might cut jobs in the coal sector or restrict the industry’s access to […]

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A federal judge ruled that the Tennessee Valley Authority, a utility owned by the U.S. government, is responsible for a spill in 2008 of toxic waste from a coal-fired power plant. The Associated Press reports that in the next phase of the case, the judge will determine compensation for each of the more than 800 […]

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nrel

A massive U.S. government study shows what an electrical grid powered largely by renewable sources looks like, but not the path to get there.

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Renewable energy consumption increases, but King Coal is tenacious.

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Can putting a monetary value on natural resources reign in unfettered development? The Associated Press reports on the complex evolution of green accounting. Expectations are running low days before the Rio+20 global summit on sustainable development, The Wall Street Journal says, but can a different approach focused on “bottom up” efforts, local solutions and smaller […]

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Statistics Aging water and sewer infrastructure and finding the money to pay for repairs are top concerns for U.S. water utility leaders, according to a survey from Black and Veatch, an engineering and consulting firm. BP released its annual Statistical Review of World Energy, a comprehensive assessment of global energy trends. Energy demand in the […]

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Investments Because climate change will make rivers warmer and reduce their flow, the generating capacity for coal-fired and nuclear power plants—which rely on water for cooling—will decrease by between 4 and 16 percent in the U.S. and between 6 and 19 percent in Europe in the years 2031-2060, Reuters reports, citing a study published in […]

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blm-map

The falling price of photovoltaic panels and public concerns about aquifers and rivers in the western United States are boosting solar energy technologies that save water.

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Solar Review The deadline for submitting public comments on the Bureau of Land Management’s broad environmental review of solar energy development in six western U.S. states is Friday. The review will result in changes to the agency’s resource management plans, allowing it to concentrate solar energy projects on the most suitable parcels of land. Comments […]

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