The Stream, June 2, 2020: United Kingdom Sees Sunniest Spring, Driest May on Record

The Global Rundown

The United Kingdom experiences its driest May and sunniest spring on record. An independent review of water quality in Dayton, Ohio, remains suspended due to Covid-19. Kenya hopes to help alleviate cyclical floods and droughts by building a series of dams. A report warns that chemicals used in fracking could endanger rivers in Australia’s Kati Thanda-Lake Eyre basin. New Jersey officially adopts strict drinking water standards for two PFAS chemicals. 

“Safe drinking water is a top priority for the Murphy administration. With the adoption of these standards, New Jersey continues to lead the nation in protecting public health and the environment from these chemicals, which have been detected at varying levels across the state.” –Catherine R. McCabe, Commissioner New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection, in reference to new drinking water limits on two PFAS chemicals. On June 1, New Jersey officially adopted the standards, which limits perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) to 14 parts per trillion (ppt) and perfluorooctane sulfonic acid (PFOS) to 13 ppt. Cape May County Herald 

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By The Numbers

573 Hours of sunshine recorded this spring in the United Kingdom, making it the sunniest spring since records began in 1929. This May was also the driest in 124 years of record-keeping. The Meteorological Office is concerned that dry conditions could spell larger drought problems throughout the rest of the year. Bloomberg Green 

$868 million Anticipated cost of the Magwagwa multipurpose dam, which is set to be built in western Kenya. The Magwagwa is one of several dams that the government hopes will help regulate the deepening cycle of severe flooding and drought in the East African nation. Bloomberg I Quint 

Science, Studies, and Reports

A federal report warns that chemicals used in unconventional gas drilling in Queensland, Australia, could imperil fragile rivers in the Kati Thanda-Lake Eyre basin. The report comes as the government tries to decide whether to boost gas drilling operations in the post-coronavirus economy. The Guardian 

On the Radar

In March, the city of Dayton, Ohio, hired an environmental consulting firm to conduct an independent review of the city’s water quality and infrastructure, but the $90,000 initiative was suspended due to Covid-19 and remains on hold. The study will focus on the water system’s current and future conditions. Dayton Daily News

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