Chair of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, [Sen. Lisa] Murkowski convened the two-hour hearing Thursday primarily to consider significantly different House and Senate versions of California water legislation. The morning hearing was the first to be held specifically on the bills.
Gov. Jerry Brown signed legislation Thursday requiring California to phase out the use of microscopic exfoliating beads in personal care products sold in the state starting in 2020 to protect fish and wildlife.
In a revised forecast Thursday, the National Weather Service said Northern California stands a decent chance of getting significant precipitation from this winter’s El Niño weather pattern, a development that could help ease the state’s four-year drought.
Gov. Jerry Brown on Thursday signed 23 new environmental bills into law, banning tiny plastic beads in cosmetics that scientists say are polluting the ocean and San Francisco Bay, toughening oil pipeline laws and requiring the state’s massive pension funds to sell off their coal stocks.
Federal forecasters on Thursday reinforced expectations of a strong El Niño this winter, saying there’s a 95 percent chance the burly weather phenomenon, often linked to rain in California, sticks around until spring.
California’s four-year drought is causing the state to sink. Many of the state’s farmers have turned to drilling deeper and deeper down in order to find groundwater for their crops, resulting in a higher risk of flooding.
Two years ago, the discovery of dangerous bacteria in the drinking water of two working-class communities along the Rio Grande in Texas set off alarms among state regulators and investigators. Their arrival sparked hope among residents that perhaps, finally, something might be done about longstanding problems with their water.
As an investigation continues into September’s massive sewage spill off the South Bay coast, Hyperion Treatment Plant officials Thursday fielded questions from community members and environmentalists concerned that it could happen again.
Among the devastating effects of the low pressure storm system that pummeled South Carolina over the weekend was the heavy damage the record-breaking rains caused to water transport and treatment infrastructure, and the release of a tide of contaminated stormwater.
Spurred by concern over an oil pipeline crossing beneath the Straits of Mackinac, the National Wildlife Federation on Thursday filed a lawsuit claiming that the federal agency responsible for regulating pipelines has failed to comply with the Clean Water Act. The suit, filed in the United States District Court for Eastern Michigan, says the U.S. Department of Transportation has not reviewed or approved response plans for oil spills from pipelines that cross rivers and lakes.
From the Department of Water Resources: “The Department of Water Resources (DWR) today [Oct. 8] released the Proposed Sustainable Groundwater Management Act (SGMA) Basin Boundary Emergency Regulations in a step toward meeting the first major SGMA deadline for DWR and providing the rules that establish an important process for local agencies to continue their implementation of this historic groundwater law.
Today [Oct. 8] the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recognized the Sonoma-Marin Saving Water Partnership, the Municipal Water District of Orange County, KB Home, Energy Inspectors Corporation, and 13 other winners as WaterSense Partners of the Year for creating, rebating, communicating and educating consumers about WaterSense labeled products, homes and programs. EPA Region 9 is working with all levels of government, tribes, and NGOs to expand and scale-up improved and sustainable water management in response to the ongoing severe drought in the Pacific Southwest.