The Stream, December 1: California Releases Draft Water Conservation Proposal

The Global Rundown

Water managers in California have called on the state to implement permanent water use restrictions and plan for long-term droughts. Wildfires, fueled by drought, continue to burn near Great Smoky Mountains National Park in Tennessee. The U.S. Congress is set to approve millions of dollars in federal aid to help Flint, Michigan address its lead-contaminated water. Barisal, Bangladesh is committed to restoring its canal system to reduce floods and improve quality of life, the city’s mayor said. Even after two decades, some suburbs of Mexico City remain without running water.

“Our greatest asset is that people see that this works. Each year during the monsoon, the lower part of the city is flooded, but last year, since the drains were clear, the rainwater went down very quickly because we excavated several canals and ponds under this initiative.” –Ahsan Habib Kamal, mayor of Barisal, on the Bangladesh city’s plan to restore a network of canals to reduce floods and improve transportation. The canals have fallen into disrepair due to encroachment and development. (The Third Pole)

By The Numbers

7 people Number who have died in wildfires near Great Smoky Mountains National Park in Tennessee, where a drought and high winds have fueled the flames. Reuters

20 years Time some communities in the suburbs of Mexico City have waited to receive running water. New developments continue to stretch the city’s ability to provide basic services, and put more pressure on water resources. Reuters

Science, Studies, And Reports

California should make permanent some water saving measures implemented during the drought, including a ban on over-watering lawns, according to a draft proposal released by state water regulators. The state is developing a long-term water conservation plan, and the proposal also calls for cities and agricultural water suppliers to better track and plan their water use. About 60 percent of California is still experiencing severe drought conditions. Reuters

On The Radar

Federal government aid to address contaminated water in Flint, Michigan is set to be approved by the U.S. Congress before the end of the year, according to congressional leader Paul Ryan. About $220 million could be earmarked for Flint, where the man-made water crisis exposed thousands of children in the city to high levels of lead. Associated Press

In context: Explore Circle of Blue’s special report on the Flint water crisis.