August 20, 2014

7:01 AM | Drought-Stricken California Town Struggles to Keep the Water Flowing
From heavy machinery to hand-held flour sifters, this town is pulling out all the stops to save its water.

August 19, 2014

7:20 PM | In California, we are bracing ourselves for the water wars.
In California, we are bracing ourselves for the water wars. An investigative article from the Washington Post explains why the current drought, the worst in recorded history, could change the state forever. Read more...

August 17, 2014

7:31 PM | Soil Connections: Drought, Dust and Antibiotic Resistant Bacteria
An unfortunate sequence of events involving drought, depleted water resources, wastewater management, antibiotic resistant bacteria (ABR) and dust storms may pose a real health risk in desert states – and, perhaps, beyond. Briefly, here’s the sequence of steps, beginning with drought and ending with a respiratory infection: 1. Arid states can’t grow everything they want with what little rainfall they get – so they irrigate. 2. Limited fresh water used …

August 15, 2014

10:08 PM | Gardening in the Drought: What Makes a Plant ‘Drought-Tolerant’
Plants have evolved all sorts of ways to survive the dry times in California.

August 13, 2014

11:21 AM | Extreme drought in US threatens groundwater supply
Institute of Hazard, Risk and Resilience Blog - Making a difference to how we live with hazard and risk. The current drought in California is one of the worst on record in the state’s history, and not surprisingly it has broken a 120-year-old record for heat. 80 percent of California is experiencing extreme drought. A State of Emergency was [...] The post Extreme drought in US threatens groundwater supply appeared first on Institute of Hazard, Risk and Resilience Blog.
1:53 AM | Water Restrictions: Meaning of ‘Mandatory’ Depends on Where You Live
Enforcement strategies are all over the map, literally and figuratively.

August 11, 2014

2:09 PM | Fire, Forests, and Fighter Jets
By Jason Bittel The 35,284-acre Oregon Gulch fire burning about 15 miles east of Ashland, Oregon, is now 64 percent contained, but last week, the blaze sent rare pyrocumulus (that’s fire + cumulus) clouds high into the sky. That’s when aerial photographer Jim “Hazy” Haseltine was able to capture this shot of an F-15C from Oregon’s Air National Guard with a bad-ass backdrop. A combination of lightning and dry conditions (read: […]

August 06, 2014

10:12 PM | History of fire and drought shapes the ecology of California, past and future
Fire season has arrived in California with vengeance in […]
2:01 PM | Growing A Solution To California’s Groundwater Crisis
By Peyton Fleming Senior Communications Director, Ceres Three years before the California drought became a national crisis, national berry giant Driscoll’s, on the state’s Central Coast, knew it had a major problem with water. It was disappearing. As a result, water rights lawsuits had become commonplace, water rates were rising again and the precious liquid…

August 05, 2014

6:56 PM | 7 Weird Ways to Save Water
By Scott Lau Whether it’s in response to California’s recent drought, or just to be economical, here are seven weird ways young people, like me and my peers, are saving water today. Dirty clothes? Wash your laundry in large loads. Collect the grey water in a bucket And use the soapy water to mop up…
5:15 PM | Water costs up 1,000% where half of US fruits, vegetables and nuts grow
The rising cost of vegetables and the crops fed to livestock may alter the diets of the expanded mass of poor people in the US. The real impact, however, is the drying of springs and ponds used by wildlife. Drought and human competition for water will shove many species farther toward extinction. Continue reading →

August 04, 2014

3:20 PM | What Will California's Drought Do To Our Food Supply?
California is in the middle of a crushing, and steadily worsening, drought. It's also one of our top agricultural producers. So just what does this drought mean for our food supply?Read more...
11:00 AM | What If California Runs Out of Water?
If California's drought continues beyond year three, experts say that the thirsty state could be in danger of a slow-motion water apocalypse.

August 03, 2014

11:08 PM | Heat, Drought and Lightning Spark Upsurge in Wildfires
Wildfire activity is really picking up in California and Oregon, thanks to extreme drought, high temperatures and lightning crackling across the region. In California alone, the area burned by wildfire has quadrupled since last Wednesday. The animation above consists of natural and false color satellite images acquired yesterday by NASA’s Aqua satellite. In it, I […]The post Heat, Drought and Lightning Spark Upsurge in Wildfires appeared first on ImaGeo.
5:40 AM | North American waterfowl are newest casualty of California’s drought – The Sacramento Bee
“California wildlife officials are asking the public to help watch for sick waterfowl that may be suffering because of the drought. Avian botulism is more likely to spread when birds cluster in small pockets of water. Already, hundreds of dead … Continue reading →

August 01, 2014

3:43 PM | How Conservation and Groundwater Management Can Gird California for a Drier Era
Experts see a mix of conservation and groundwater management as the cheapest way for Californians to grapple with deepening drought.

July 31, 2014

10:59 PM | Even as Spectacular Storms Bring Relief to U.S. Southwest, Drought Conditions Persist — and Worsen in California
After a profound lack of precipitation, parts of the Southwestern United States have finally begun to get some desperately needed relief. New Mexico, where the spectacular photo above was taken yesterday, has been suffering through four years of drought. And while the drought hasn’t ended (not by a long shot), the storms have finally come […]The post Even as Spectacular Storms Bring Relief to U.S. Southwest, Drought Conditions Persist — and Worsen in California appeared first […]
10:38 PM | Exceptional Drought Blankets 58 Percent of California
Previous week’s values of 36 percent exceptional drought coverage rocketed to 58 percent in just one week. Exceptional drought is the highest drought category for the US Drought Monitor, representing the most extreme conditions in the measure. So most of the state is now sweltering under the nation’s worst drought category with the remainder covered by extreme and severe drought: Continue reading →
1:15 PM | California’s Biggest Water Source Shrouded in Secrecy
Stanford launches a major investigation of the state's dwindling groundwater resources and finds "alarming" gaps.

July 28, 2014

8:38 PM | High and Dry
By Sharman Apt Russell Nineteen sixty. I was 5 years old and talking politics with my best friend’s mom. No, I chattered, my mom had never voted for Barry Goldwater, former city councilman and now U.S. senator from Arizona. She just didn’t trust the man. Whoa! My best friend’s mom seemed to expand like a red balloon. Didn’t I know that the future of Phoenix, my hometown, depended on men like Barry Goldwater? Gulp. Well, no, I […]

July 25, 2014

9:28 PM | ESA Policy News July 25: Senators review EPA power plant rules, rural CA receives drought relief, ESA to aid Interior science group
Here are some highlights from the latest ESA Policy New […]
9:19 PM | Weekend Reads: Virtual Reality Environmentalism, Climate Cowboys, Are Water Witchers for Real?
By Jason Bittel If a Tree Falls in a Virtual Forest…Imagine you’re a little piece of purple coral. Everything’s going swimmingly until the ocean begins to acidify and your reef starts dropping dead all around you. Then, all of a sudden, you watch yourself losing your purple hue … and then the darkness is closes in. Lucky for you, this is just a virtual reality experiment to see if “experiencing” an environmental […]
1:37 PM | Blue Whales in the Way, Court Blows ABX Decision, Radioactive Snow Monkeys
By Jason Bittel Take your medicine (oh, what’s the point...): The U.S. Second Circuit Court of Appeals ruled yesterday that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration is under no obligation to ban the practice of administering antibiotics to healthy livestock as a way of promoting growth—even though study after study shows that the practice is creating drug-resistant superbugs (see "You Want Superbugs With That?"). The U.S. Centers for Disease […]

July 24, 2014

6:20 PM | How the West was Lost
Just as the settling and development of the arid American West was fueled by harnessing its available fresh water, the growing lack of water availability may well be its undoing. California’s epic drought is just the latest example of what is shaping up to be the new normal out west.  Last year was the driest…
10:00 AM | Drought Hastens Groundwater Depletion in the Texas Panhandle
Persistent drought in northwest Texas is leading farmers to pump more water from the Ogallala Aquifer, hastening the depletion of this crucial water supply. Over the last decade, from 2004-2014, average underground water levels across the 16-county High Plains Underground Water Conservation District (HPWD) have dropped 8.83 feet (2.69 meters), with three counties seeing average…
4:00 AM | Drought Becomes Top Environmental Priority for Californians
Those surveyed say they favor mandatory restrictions on water use.

July 23, 2014

2:38 PM | Beetles Eat Beatle Tree, Nestle Chugs Away California’s H20, EPA Goes Kim K. Krazy
By Jason Bittel Liquid loophole: California is in its third year of drought, and by state law districts must report their water consumption and well levels. But Nestle’s Arrowhead bottled water division has found a way around all that silly reporting: it buys its water from the Morongo Tribe, which is technically a sovereign nation and thus, not beholden to California’s laws. So how much water are we talking about? In 2009, the Nestle plant […]
1:59 PM | Extreme to Exceptional Drought Now Covers Over 80 Percent of California
It’s no longer a question of 100% drought coverage for the stricken state of California. That barrier was crossed months ago. Today, it’s how severe that drought coverage has become. And in a state… Source: Excellent article.Filed under: Climate … Continue reading →

July 22, 2014

4:22 PM | Climate Model Shows Australia’s Rainfall Decline Due To Human-Caused Climate Change
Simulating natural and human-caused climate drivers, scientists showed that the decline in rainfall is primarily a response to human-caused increases in greenhouse gases as well as a thinning of the ozone caused by human-caused aerosol emissions. Continue reading →

July 21, 2014

2:45 PM | Drilling the Atlantic, Germany Wins (Again), Synchronized Swimming with Robots and Hippos
By Jason Bittel Cold calculation: The Obama administration announced Friday that it will open the Eastern Seaboard for offshore drilling, and allow oil and gas companies to use sonic surveying cannons, a technology known to disrupt the communication systems of marine mammals, causing them to beach themselves. But hey, apparently that’s OK with the feds. “The U.S. Bureau of Ocean Energy Management acknowledged that thousands of sea creatures will […]
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