“Federal biologists clad in waders and armed with long-handled nets this week moved hundreds of red-legged frog eggs from a San Fernando Valley stream to carefully selected wetlands 10 miles away in the first attempt to expand the threatened species’ range in Southern California.”
“As international efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions stall, schemes to slow global warming using fantastical technologies once dismissed as a sideshow are getting serious consideration in Washington.”
“As the state’s drought deepens, Stanford University’s water conservation efforts and strategies for expanding water resources for the future could serve as a helpful model for the rest of the state, a panel of Stanford experts said at a public forum on Tuesday night.”
“For home builders and construction companies, the lack of rain has allowed them to get their jobs done without any weather-related delays. Yet, they said the drought is changing the future of home building as companies are preparing for what they call ‘a major pressure’ for houses that feature water-saving designs and devices.”
“With millions of people worried about California’s historic drought, a proliferation of free apps turn water conservation into a game while letting consumers save both water and money around the house.”
From the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) Science Features blog:
“The 2014 Winter Olympic Games in Sochi, Russia will be featuring many exciting events for the world to see. Though the Olympics Games is the premier athletic competition worldwide, the games also bridge the gap between science and sports by covering a number of Earth science topics as well. …
“The U.S. Geological Survey compiles water use statistics every five years and hopes to build towards a National Water Census.
From Greenversations, An EPA Blog About Science Matters, in a post by Marguerite Huber:
“EPA researchers studying green infrastructure (using vegetation, soil, and other naturalistic techniques to reduce stormwater runoff) collaborated with colleagues in the Agency’s New England office (EPA Region 1) to develop a new public-domain software app called the Watershed Management Optimization Support Tool (WMOST).
“The goal of the tool is to help water resource managers and planners identify cost effective, sustainable green infrastructure options for their local jurisdictions.
“Russian Hill has some of the best views in the city – the Golden Gate Bridge, Alcatraz and the bay itself. And for decades its residents have also had to stare at the ugly, decommissioned Francisco Reservoir.”
“Davis can raise its water rates to pay for the city’s Surface Water Project with neighboring Woodland, a Yolo Superior Court judge ruled Wednesday, thwarting a local lawsuit that alleged the rates were unconstitutional.”
From the California WaterBlog by the UC Davis Center for Watershed Sciences in a post by Jay Lund:
“California’s history is punctuated by droughts (Hanak et al 2011). Each drought reveals problems and becomes an opportunity to focus on improving water management and expanding smaller-scale innovations. For example:
From the Los Angeles Times, in a commentary by Patt Morrison:
“If you’re not at least a little panicky, then you’re not paying attention. California is in a state of slow-moving emergency. The governor, Jerry Brown, made it official last week: Rainfall is pitiable, snowpack and reservoir levels deplorable. We have the worst drought on record, the record being about 100 years.
“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.”
“You know the story of the salmon: born in the gravel beds of mountain streams, growing fat and strong in the Pacific Ocean and finally journeying home to spawn and die in a dramatic climax. But that’s not the end of it.
“Even in death, these fish aren’t finished — at least, not at the Mokelumne River Fish Hatchery, east of Clements.”
“There’s a new ‘old’ tower at the Piedras Blancas Light Station north of Cambria. Like the taller, older lighthouse, the 50-foot-tall replica water tower will continue the lighthouse tradition of providing safety communications, just as the 74-foot lighthouse tower itself has helped guide mariners since 1875.
“The humans who brave frosty Sierra winters to measure the annual snowpack may be far from obsolete, but a high-altitude aircraft appears to have done them better.
“Flying at 22,000 feet above the High Sierra’s Tuolumne River watershed last spring, an instrumented NASA plane revealed the depth of the winter snowpack and estimated its water content across hundreds of square miles.”