Entries by Brett Walton

Federal Water Tap, November 19: EPA Watchdog Flags Unregulated Pollutants in Treated Sewage Sludge

The Rundown The EPA has not determined the risks from hundreds of unregulated pollutants in treated sludge, the agency’s inspector general reports. Bills to establish a St. Francis Dam disaster memorial and to authorize two Montana rural water systems move forward in Congress. Thermoelectric power plant water withdrawals continue to decline. The USGS publishes a […]

Brett writes about agriculture, energy, infrastructure, and the politics and economics of water in the United States. He also writes the Federal Water Tap, Circle of Blue’s weekly digest of U.S. government water news. He is the winner of two Society of Environmental Journalists reporting awards, one of the top honors in American environmental journalism: first place for explanatory reporting for a series on septic system pollution in the United States(2016) and third place for beat reporting in a small market (2014). Brett lives in Seattle, where he hikes the mountains and bakes pies. Contact Brett Walton

CDC Releases Latest U.S. Legionnaires’ Disease Data

Legionnaires’ disease, a pneumonia-like illness, is the deadliest waterborne disease in the United States, killing about one in eleven people it sickens.

Brett writes about agriculture, energy, infrastructure, and the politics and economics of water in the United States. He also writes the Federal Water Tap, Circle of Blue’s weekly digest of U.S. government water news. He is the winner of two Society of Environmental Journalists reporting awards, one of the top honors in American environmental journalism: first place for explanatory reporting for a series on septic system pollution in the United States(2016) and third place for beat reporting in a small market (2014). Brett lives in Seattle, where he hikes the mountains and bakes pies. Contact Brett Walton

Federal Water Tap, November 12: CDC Report Details Legionnaires’ Disease Data

The Rundown The CDC publishes Legionnaires’ data from 2014 and 2015. The EPA releases the first batch of test results from latest cycle of monitoring unregulated contaminants in drinking water. The EPA and New Mexico agencies look at ways to reuse oilfield wastewater. Watchdog agency recommends better dam safety oversight at FERC. A Senate subcommittee […]

Brett writes about agriculture, energy, infrastructure, and the politics and economics of water in the United States. He also writes the Federal Water Tap, Circle of Blue’s weekly digest of U.S. government water news. He is the winner of two Society of Environmental Journalists reporting awards, one of the top honors in American environmental journalism: first place for explanatory reporting for a series on septic system pollution in the United States(2016) and third place for beat reporting in a small market (2014). Brett lives in Seattle, where he hikes the mountains and bakes pies. Contact Brett Walton

2018 Election: Voters Reject Stricter Rules for Oil, Gas, and Mining

Water protections and spending were at stake in state and local ballot initiatives.

Brett writes about agriculture, energy, infrastructure, and the politics and economics of water in the United States. He also writes the Federal Water Tap, Circle of Blue’s weekly digest of U.S. government water news. He is the winner of two Society of Environmental Journalists reporting awards, one of the top honors in American environmental journalism: first place for explanatory reporting for a series on septic system pollution in the United States(2016) and third place for beat reporting in a small market (2014). Brett lives in Seattle, where he hikes the mountains and bakes pies. Contact Brett Walton

Federal Water Tap, November 5: Senators Introduce Water Bill Assistance Legislation

The Rundown Bipartisan bill would establish pilot programs to help poor families pay water and sewer bills. The EPA selects 39 water infrastructure projects to apply for $5 billion in federal loans. NOAA assesses the 2018 Lake Erie algal bloom, which was milder than forecasted. FERC asks California officials for more analysis of Oroville Dam […]

Brett writes about agriculture, energy, infrastructure, and the politics and economics of water in the United States. He also writes the Federal Water Tap, Circle of Blue’s weekly digest of U.S. government water news. He is the winner of two Society of Environmental Journalists reporting awards, one of the top honors in American environmental journalism: first place for explanatory reporting for a series on septic system pollution in the United States(2016) and third place for beat reporting in a small market (2014). Brett lives in Seattle, where he hikes the mountains and bakes pies. Contact Brett Walton

After Hurricanes, Pollution Hazards for Private Water Wells in the Southeast

Floodwaters from Florence and Michael introduce bacteria and contaminants into wells.

Brett writes about agriculture, energy, infrastructure, and the politics and economics of water in the United States. He also writes the Federal Water Tap, Circle of Blue’s weekly digest of U.S. government water news. He is the winner of two Society of Environmental Journalists reporting awards, one of the top honors in American environmental journalism: first place for explanatory reporting for a series on septic system pollution in the United States(2016) and third place for beat reporting in a small market (2014). Brett lives in Seattle, where he hikes the mountains and bakes pies. Contact Brett Walton

Federal Water Tap, October 29: EPA Waits for Court Extension on Drinking Water Regulation

The Rundown EPA waits for court decision on agency’s request for more time to develop regulations for perchlorate in drinking water. President Trump signs a big water infrastructure bill. The USGS coordinates groundwater mapping in the Mississippi alluvial aquifer, important for farm irrigation. The Defense Department’s environmental research program announces funding for PFAS remediation. And […]

Brett writes about agriculture, energy, infrastructure, and the politics and economics of water in the United States. He also writes the Federal Water Tap, Circle of Blue’s weekly digest of U.S. government water news. He is the winner of two Society of Environmental Journalists reporting awards, one of the top honors in American environmental journalism: first place for explanatory reporting for a series on septic system pollution in the United States(2016) and third place for beat reporting in a small market (2014). Brett lives in Seattle, where he hikes the mountains and bakes pies. Contact Brett Walton

Tough Water Decisions in 2018 Election Initiatives

Voters will decide on infrastructure spending, oil and gas development, and salmon habitat protection.

Brett writes about agriculture, energy, infrastructure, and the politics and economics of water in the United States. He also writes the Federal Water Tap, Circle of Blue’s weekly digest of U.S. government water news. He is the winner of two Society of Environmental Journalists reporting awards, one of the top honors in American environmental journalism: first place for explanatory reporting for a series on septic system pollution in the United States(2016) and third place for beat reporting in a small market (2014). Brett lives in Seattle, where he hikes the mountains and bakes pies. Contact Brett Walton

Federal Water Tap, October 22: Trump Memo Aims To Deliver More Water To California Farms

The Rundown Most immediate effect of the Trump memo will be to quicken environmental reviews. Operation and maintenance costs for water systems are rising, according to the Congressional Budget Office. Federal agencies publish timetables for regulatory actions. An Ohio lawmaker introduces a bill to require the EPA to set a drinking water standard for microcystin. […]

Brett writes about agriculture, energy, infrastructure, and the politics and economics of water in the United States. He also writes the Federal Water Tap, Circle of Blue’s weekly digest of U.S. government water news. He is the winner of two Society of Environmental Journalists reporting awards, one of the top honors in American environmental journalism: first place for explanatory reporting for a series on septic system pollution in the United States(2016) and third place for beat reporting in a small market (2014). Brett lives in Seattle, where he hikes the mountains and bakes pies. Contact Brett Walton

U.N. Climate Report: Water Extremes, Unevenly Distributed, Worsen With More Heat

More floods and droughts in a warmer world. But certain regions will be worse off than others.

Brett writes about agriculture, energy, infrastructure, and the politics and economics of water in the United States. He also writes the Federal Water Tap, Circle of Blue’s weekly digest of U.S. government water news. He is the winner of two Society of Environmental Journalists reporting awards, one of the top honors in American environmental journalism: first place for explanatory reporting for a series on septic system pollution in the United States(2016) and third place for beat reporting in a small market (2014). Brett lives in Seattle, where he hikes the mountains and bakes pies. Contact Brett Walton

Federal Water Tap, October 15: Senate Passes Water Infrastructure Bill

The Rundown Big water infrastructure package authorizes billions of dollars for water systems. The CDC asks to extend a national database for harmful algal bloom illnesses. A standards-setting agency seeks information about potential plumbing code revisions that reflect changes in how water is used in buildings. And lastly, the number of Legionnaires’ disease cases so […]

Brett writes about agriculture, energy, infrastructure, and the politics and economics of water in the United States. He also writes the Federal Water Tap, Circle of Blue’s weekly digest of U.S. government water news. He is the winner of two Society of Environmental Journalists reporting awards, one of the top honors in American environmental journalism: first place for explanatory reporting for a series on septic system pollution in the United States(2016) and third place for beat reporting in a small market (2014). Brett lives in Seattle, where he hikes the mountains and bakes pies. Contact Brett Walton

Deadly Legionnaires’ Disease Outbreaks Persist in the U.S.

The most acute U.S. water contamination health risk defies control.

Brett writes about agriculture, energy, infrastructure, and the politics and economics of water in the United States. He also writes the Federal Water Tap, Circle of Blue’s weekly digest of U.S. government water news. He is the winner of two Society of Environmental Journalists reporting awards, one of the top honors in American environmental journalism: first place for explanatory reporting for a series on septic system pollution in the United States(2016) and third place for beat reporting in a small market (2014). Brett lives in Seattle, where he hikes the mountains and bakes pies. Contact Brett Walton