The Global Rundown
Nitrate is found in the tap water of one in eight Minnesota homes, a study shows. Displaced residents in Jakarta, Indonesia, file a lawsuit against the city’s governor over inaction during recent flooding. A research organization plans to provide public access to U.S. flood probability data. Drought increases human-wildlife conflict in Zimbabwe. Deepening drought affects ranchers in rural Texas.
“You have to decide where’s your quitting point in terms of buying feed, buying hay and feeding your animals. Even the guys that have been very conservative with their [land], those guys are even getting short on grass.” –Jamie Osbourn, an agent with the Texas A&M Agrilife Extension office in Llano County, in reference to the impact of drought on parts of Texas Hill Country. At least a third of the state has been in drought since August 2019, and 17 counties are under a drought disaster declaration. The dry conditions are hampering ranching and farming in the state. The Texas Tribune
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By The Numbers
200+ Residents of Jakarta, Indonesia, who have filed a lawsuit against the city’s governor over inaction during recent intense flooding. The residents claim that local authorities failed to properly assist deluged communities, and are requesting 42.3 billion rupiah ($3.1 million) in compensation. Reuters
1 in 8 Homes in Minnesota that consume nitrate-tainted tap water, according to a new analysis by the Environmental Working Group. The study looked at public water systems, community systems, and private wells. Researchers say the contamination seems to be especially widespread in private wells, thousands of which remain untested. Minneapolis Star Tribune
Science, Studies, and Reports
First Street Foundation, a climate research organization in the U.S., has partnered with eight universities to help provide data on past and future flooding across the country. The data will be made available to the public in the first half of this year, and will allow people to search by address and see flood risk for homes. Reuters
On the Radar
Drought is spurring human-wildlife conflict in Zimbabwe, with 311 animal attacks recorded in 2019, up from 195 in 2018. A total of 36 people were killed, with elephant attacks responsible for a majority of the fatalities. Phys.org
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