The Stream, March 7: U.S. Supreme Court Rules That the Federal Government Can Intervene in Rio Grande Water Dispute

The Global Rundown

The U.S. Supreme Court issues an opinion on the Rio Grande water-sharing dispute. After months of drought, March rains should enable Argentinian farmers to plant a normal wheat crop. Illinois plans to raze residence halls at the Quincy veterans’ facility, where dozens have fallen ill with Legionnaires’ disease since 2015. A new report predicts that tidal flooding will become a weekly event along parts the U.S. East Coast. Cape Town continues to cut water consumption, pushing Day Zero to July 15.

“People must continue to save, reduce their consumption. We can’t afford to relax the water-saving efforts.” –Ian Neilson, Deputy Mayor of Cape Town, in reference to the city’s ongoing efforts to conserve water. Last week’s water consumption averaged 516 megalitres per day — more than the 450Ml/day needed to avoid Day Zero entirely, but enough to push the date to July 15. News24

In context: Circle of Blue’s coverage of Cape Town.

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What’s Up With Water – March 5, 2018 – “What’s Up With Water” condenses the need-to-know news on the world’s water into a snapshot for the start of the workweek. Listen to this week’s edition to hear coverage on South Africa’s ongoing drought, Yemen’s cholera crisis, and a controversial Michigan groundwater bill.

By The Numbers

13 Number of people who died from an outbreak of Legionnaires’ disease at the Quincy veterans’ facility in Illinois. Dozens of others have fallen ill since 2015. Two months ago, Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner committed to replacing the plumbing in the dorms, but has now decided to demolish and replace the housing entirely. The New York Times

In context: Risks grow for deadliest U.S. drinking water hazard.

5.7 million hectares Amount of wheat that will likely be planted in Argentina for the 2018/19 season, a 5 percent increase over last year. Late March rains are predicted to allow normal planting, after months of drought devastated the country’s soy and corn crops. Reuters

Science, Studies, And Reports

A new report warns that flooding could become a weekly event along the U.S. East Coast in coming decades. With intermediate sea rise, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration calculates that cities on the Atlantic could see high tides flooding the streets 25 to 130 times a year by 2050, and every day by 2100. NPR

On The Radar

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the federal government can intervene in a Rio Grande water-sharing dispute pitting Texas against New Mexico and Colorado. Texas sued New Mexico in 2014, claiming that the state was illegally pumping groundwater that would otherwise flow to Texas. The court declared that the United States has an interest in the dispute, which threatens to upset federal water obligations, including an international agreement with Mexico. Albuquerque Journal

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