The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced that a pollution permit, called a NPDES permit in the lingo, will not be necessary for stormwater coming from logging roads. The agency will continue to study the best way to reduce sediment runoff from what it calls “a relatively small subset” of roads that affect stream quality.
Responding to a lawsuit from ski resorts operating on public lands, the U.S. Forest Service said that restrictions it placed on water rights are a legal administrative procedure, the Summit County Voice reports. The restrictions are designed to prevent water from being sold.
This week the House of Representation might discuss the appropriations bill that sets the fiscal year 2013 budget for the Department of Energy, the Army Corps of Engineers, and other water and energy agencies.
Ecosystem protection in the Grand Canyon is the goal of two research programs announced by the Interior Department. One program will use high-volume releases from Glen Canyon dam, upstream on the Colorado River, to mimic natural flood flows. The other seeks to protect endangered fish from non-native species.
Infrared sensors on NOAA satellites show the dry conditions that led to large fires last week in the Southwest. A fire in New Mexico’s Gila National Forest spreads over 49,000 hectares (122,000 acres).
The latest government drought report shows “exceptional” drought conditions–the most severe category–in much of Georgia and north Florida.
Brett writes about agriculture, energy, infrastructure, and the politics and economics of water in the United States. He also writes the Federal Water Tap, Circle of Blue’s weekly digest of U.S. government water news. He is the winner of two Society of Environmental Journalists reporting awards, one of the top honors in American environmental journalism: first place for explanatory reporting for a series on septic system pollution in the United States(2016) and third place for beat reporting in a small market (2014). He received the Sierra Club’s Distinguished Service Award in 2018. Brett lives in Seattle, where he hikes the mountains and bakes pies. Contact Brett Walton