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Bureau of Reclamation Commissioner Brenda Burman has announced that six submissions were selected to receive awards while three submissions were selected to receive partial awards in the Colorado River Basin Data Visualization Prize Competition. Jared Schwartz was selected to receive the top prize of $15,750. The objective of this prize challenge was to develop a visualization tool to support exploration and understanding of climate, hydrology, river and reservoir conditions across the Colorado River Basin as well as how these conditions vary in space and time.
The Latest on drought contingency plans being considered by states that rely on the Colorado River … Las Vegas-area water managers have become the first to advance a multi-state drought contingency plan that officials hope will ease the effects of Colorado River water shortages.
In the universe of California water, Tim Quinn has seen — and been a key player in — a lot of major California water issues since he began his water career 40 years ago. In December, the 66-year-old Quinn will retire as executive director of the Association of California Water Agencies. In a Q&A with Western Water, Quinn talked about his “rather unusual” career, “adversarialists” and the continuing water wars, and what he sees as the challenges and opportunities ahead in California water.
The federal government and the state of California seem to love suing each other, and have done so dozens of times in the past two years without causing anyone much damage. But President Donald Trump is now threatening to sue the state over control of water. This could harm a lot of people, because water is the source of the most contentious and enduring battles in America’s largest state.
Our yearlong Water Leaders program is aimed at providing a deeper understanding of California water issues by attending water tours, studying a topic in-depth and working with a mentor. You can apply for the 2019 class today; the deadline is Dec. 4. Download an application here. Make sure to read tips on applying first.
The longer that California waits for its early-season rain, the more its roughly 40 million residents will have to confront the risk of catastrophic wildfire, not to mention dropping reservoirs and parched farm fields. And this year is a clear example of that pattern, with deadly wildfires burning at both ends of the state and scant rainfall since autumn began eight weeks ago.
Legionnaires’ disease, a pneumonia-like illness, is the deadliest waterborne disease in the United States, killing about one in eleven people it sickens. There were 6,079 cases reported nationally in 2015 and 5,166 in 2014, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s first detailed report on Legionnaires’ disease occurrence. The rate of reported cases is rising rapidly, increasing four and a half times since 2000.
With longtime general manager Richard Solbrig retiring in January, South Tahoe Public Utility District was in need of a new leader. Now, the district believes it has found its man. John Thiel, a 26-year veteran of the utility district, has been tapped to take the reigns at STPUD following Solbrig’s retirement.
When people think of potential solutions to global warming, they tend to visualize technologies like solar panels or electric cars. A new study published on Wednesday, however, found that better management of forests, grasslands and soils in the United States could offset as much as 21 percent of the country’s annual greenhouse gas emissions.
Deep in a box canyon in Utah, in the heart of the fractured land known as Bears Ears National Monument, there is a cave—a swooping, mineral-streaked alcove in a sandstone cliff. In December 1893 a rancher-explorer named Richard Wetherill pushed his way through dense reeds and discovered inside that alcove a stacked-stone ruin where a prehistoric group of Native Americans once lived.
Well before dawn, near the Little Snake River in southern Wyoming, Pat and Sharon O’Toole’s pickup bounces up a broad, sage-covered valley, where the family has run livestock for five generations. Pat turns off the headlights and rolls toward a clearing.
A company developing an oil refinery near Theodore Roosevelt National Park in North Dakota has supplied adequate information to justify drawing water from an underwater aquifer, State Water Commission officials testified Wednesday.
The Trump administration’s top environmental official for the Southeast was arrested Thursday on criminal ethics charges in Alabama reported to be related to a scheme to help a coal company avoid paying for a costly toxic waste cleanup.
There is a quiet campaign underway in northern L.A. County that deserves the support of people across California. The Santa Clarita Valley Historical Society is pushing for the site of the St. Francis Dam to be declared a national memorial. The designation would commemorate both the dam and the more than 400 lives that were lost when it collapsed, the worst man-made disaster in California history.
It has been four years since Nevada Irrigation District (NID) passed closed-session Resolution 2014-43, authorizing a water rights application for a “water storage project on the Bear River” without any public comment or board discussion. This was the beginning of Centennial Dam. Since then, SYRCL and others have tried to bring Centennial Dam into public purview to promote transparency and open dialogue.
DWR recently completed construction that transforms an island in the heart of the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta from a managed leveed site to an open tidal wetland reminiscent of the historical landscape. Decker Island (Solano County) is located amidst the largest estuary on the West Coast, between freshwater and saltwater, where the endangered Delta smelt are concentrated. Over time, the Delta ecosystem and food web that native fish species depend on has been greatly diminished.
The Bureau of Reclamation has released a report that identifies innovative approaches to improve drought resiliency within the Washita Basin in Oklahoma. The study specifically looked at Foss and Fort Cobb Reservoirs, and the approach can be applied anywhere across the Western United States. The study showed that a repeat of paleo droughts could have far greater impacts on reservoir yield than the observed drought of record. The study also predicted the probability of paleo droughts being worse than the observed drought of record, and hence quantified the risks of a reservoir not fulfilling its intended purposes under different drought scenarios.
This month’s elections may have mortally wounded California’s chances for a long-delayed $23 billion water tunnel project. … The project’s biggest cheerleader, Gov. Jerry Brown (D), is leaving office because of term limits and his successor, Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom (D), lacks’ Brown’s enthusiasm for the tunnels.