The Global Rundown
Large-scale irrigation causes California’s Central Valley to sink, as well as polluting drinking water with arsenic. Officials in Bangalore, India, fail to keep “rejuvenated” lakes clean. As private springs run dry, drought-stricken Scotland provides water to citizens not connected to the public supply. Officials fear an algal toxin has tainted drinking water in a southern Iowa community. A sweltering summer and a lack of precipitation in the Arctic Circle prompts an irregular number of wildfires.
“This is definitely the worst year in recent times for forest fires. Whilst we get them every year, 2018 is shaping up to be excessive.” –Mike Peacock, a Swedish university researcher, in reference to the unprecedented number of wildfires raging in the Arctic Circle. High temperatures and minimal precipitation have fueled at least 11 blazes in the northern region. The Guardian
Latest WaterNews from Circle of Blue
A Decade After Barcelona’s Water Emergency, Drought Still Stalks Spain – Precipitation in 2017 was scarce, plunging Spain into its worst drought since 2008.
HotSpots H2O, July 16: War, Drought, and Upstream Dams Hinder Water Access in Iraq – In Iraq, water availability has been both a casualty and a catalyst of conflict.
By The Numbers
4 percent Proportion of Scottish citizens who are not connected to the country’s public water system. Many private springs and wells, however, are running dry in the midst of an unusually warm summer. In response, the government is providing emergency water to affected residents. BBC
20 Lakes that have been rejuvenated in the Hebbal Valley near Bangalore, India. Despite the rejuvenation efforts, a report by the Indian Institute of Sciences showed that only 3 of the lakes are currently in good condition. The remainder have been neglected, filling with sewage, garbage, and other pollutants. The Hindu
Science, Studies, And Reports
Land subsidence and arsenic-polluted water in California’s Central Valley are likely linked, according to a new study by Stanford University. Hundreds of crops are grown in the valley, requiring massive amounts of irrigation. Farmers must draw heavily from underground aquifers, which leads to land subsidence and changes in water pressure. In turn, the changes in pressure can suck arsenic out of clay layers–which then leaches into groundwater and ultimately ends up in the region’s drinking supply. The Guardian
On The Radar
Officials suspect that the drinking water supplies of Greenfield, Iowa, may be tainted by microcystin, an algal toxin. Residents have been warned to avoid tap water while the water is tested for the toxin. U.S. News & World Report
Kayla Ritter is a recent graduate of Michigan State University, where she studied International Relations and Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages. She is currently based in Manton, Michigan. Kayla enjoys running, writing, and traveling. Contact Kayla Ritter