If you drive Highway 99 through California’s Central Valley, you’ll pass through the heart of farm country, where the state’s bounty blooms with hundreds of crops – everything from peaches to pistachios, from tangerines to tomatoes. You’ll also pass through dozens of communities, large and small, whose water systems are tainted by a newly regulated contaminant, 1,2,3-trichloropropane (TCP), which for decades was used in agricultural fumigants injected into farmland across the Valley.
“Dave March takes a sip of his coffee and looks through the windshield of his car, which is idling in the water in Newport Harbor, next to his 65-foot yacht. …
“March, 58, has spent more than a decade developing the high-speed amphibious car he is about to take to market for $135,000 a piece. He has taken deposits from the Prince of Dubai, tycoons in Silicon Valley and millionaires from around the world.”
“In a suite of findings announced Monday, the scientists are painting a vivid picture of Gale Crater: filled with a modest lake of water, rich in the chemical ingredients for life, theoretically able to support a whole Martian biosphere based on Earth-like microbes called chemolithoautotrophs.”
“About 3.5 billion years ago — around the time life is thought to have first arisen on Earth — Mars had a large freshwater lake that might well have been hospitable to life, scientists reported Monday.
“The lake lay in the same crater where NASA’s Mars rover Curiosity landed last year and has been exploring ever since.
“New images captured by NASA’s Cassini spacecraft reveal a land of liquid methane and ethane lakes spotting the north pole of Titan, Saturn’s largest moon.
“NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in La Cañada Flintridge released the new images this week, saying that a fortunate coincidence of seasonal change and spacecraft positioning made the pictures possible.”
“As part of a feature-film shoot that’s been taking place in the Redding area in recent weeks, the federal managers of the [Shasta] dam agreed to open various sections familiar to anyone who’s taken the public tour. …
“A series of discoveries from NASA’s Curiosity rover are giving scientists a picture of Mars that looks increasingly complex, with small bits of water spread around the surface and an interior that could have been more geologically mature than experts had previously thought.”
“Scientists using a NASA instrument aboard an Indian spacecraft have discovered signs of water native to the moon – not brought from far away, but water that must have been locked beneath the lunar crust since its birth.”
“That’s right: Portland’s infamous ‘Water House’ is hitting the market, and ratepayers who footed the bill are about to get hosed.
“Portland Commissioner Nick Fish on Monday said the city Water Bureau will sell its controversial demonstration house for a massive loss, ridding itself of a “mistake” built 2 1/2 years ago under rosy financial projections and insufficient political oversight.”