The Stream, February 4: Half of Septic Tanks Inspected in Ireland Could Pollute Water

The  Global Rundown

The Global Rundown

Septic systems in Ireland are at risk of polluting drinking water, and the Chesapeake Bay is at risk from climate change and population growth. A 12-year legal battle over water in Imperial County, California has been settled, and the 111th meeting of the Indus Water Commission has concluded. Of all the water that falls on land and flows back into the sea, only one-fifth of it does so via rivers.

“It could be suggested that we’re loving the Chesapeake Bay to death.” — Nick DiPasquale, director of the Chesapeake Bay Program, on the impacts of population growth and development in the Chesapeake Bay watershed. (Reuters)

By the Numbers

By The Numbers

50 percent – Portion of septic tanks that failed inspections in Ireland between July 2013 and July 2014. Of 987 tanks inspected, 476 were failures. The Irish Environmental Protection Agency is very concerned about the lack of awareness regarding the importance of desludging septic tanks. Yearly inspections were instated in 2013 as the result of an EU ruling which found problems with water resource protection in Ireland.

12 years – Length of legal battle over water in Imperial County, California, which ended on Tuesday. Imperial County had challenged the Imperial Irrigation District over approval of a water transfer which would further stress the shrinking Salton Sea. The two parties have now settled and agreed to work together to press the state to protect the drying lake. The Desert Sun


Science, Studies, And Reports

80 percent of the water that flows from land into the ocean likely does so underground, according to recent estimates by an international team of researchers. Only 20 percent of rainfall returns to the ocean via rivers. This groundwater exchange between land and the oceans is much like an underground estuary, with salt and fresh water meeting and mixing. University of South Carolina

The Chesapeake Bay is slowly recovering from a history of overfishing and pollution, but still faces challenges, according to a report released Tuesday by the Chesapeake Bay Program. Rising sea levels, warmer water, and urban development are all still significant threats to the bay, and a halved female blue crab population is worrisome. Reuters

On the Radar

On The Radar

Pakistan and India concluded the 111th meeting of the Indus Water Commission on Tuesday. The Indus Water Commission meets regularly as a provision of the Indus Waters Treaty, which governs sharing of the Indus River and its tributaries. Outlook India

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