The coronavirus sparked a lot of water-related questions and
issues when the pandemic moved into California in 2020.
Below are the latest articles on the topic as they appeared in
our Aquafornia news aggregate.
The CDC says there’s no evidence the coronavirus can spread to
people through pool water and that proper cleaning with
chlorine or bromine should inactivate the virus if it’s in the
water. So why are pools remaining closed if there’s no evidence
of the virus spreading through the water? Because of human
Under pressure to release more details about recent outbreaks
of the coronavirus in the local business community, Sonoma
County’s top public health official on Thursday revealed three
industries in which workers recently contracted the virus. Dr.
Sundari Mase, the county’s health officer, said recent
infections have been found among workers at a local winery, a
water filtration plant and among a group of farmworkers.
Administration officials said the state must make painful
choices to keep funding intact for core environmental
regulatory and safety programs. They also point out that the
governor is proposing to boost spending for wildfire
preparedness by $90 million and would preserve funding to
enforce new clean drinking-water rules.
Governor Newsom’s May Revisions to the 2020-2021 state budget
reflect … a $54.3 billion budget deficit and propose $18
billion in cuts to state expenditures. … This blog post
provides a short summary of the proposed budget changes and
their impacts on California water management.
Before San Francisco office workers start streaming back to
downtown high-rises again, property owners and managers need to
make sure those buildings are safe. Not just from the threat of
coronavirus circulating among cubicles, but from medical
problems that can be caused when water in buildings sits
stagnant for months.
When states began issuing stay-at-home orders and millions of
Americans lost their jobs due to COVID-19, governors in dozens
of states temporarily barred utility companies from shutting
off gas, water, electricity and even internet. … But as
states move to reopen, those moratoriums will end, and
advocates are already warning that many households won’t have
enough money to resume paying their utility bills, much less
repay their deferred bill.
For homeless Americans, the coronavirus crisis has worsened a
problem that has blighted them for years; the steady closure of
the country’s public bathrooms. Health officials say frequent
hand washing is the best way to fight the spread of COVID-19,
but homeless campaigners warn that lockdown closures have left
hundreds of thousands of rough sleepers without access to soap
In April, during the first full month of the lockdown, water
demand on the Monterey Peninsula dropped by 15 percent compared
to the same month a year ago, according to data provided to the
Weekly by local water regulators.
As the world continues to grapple with the most devastating
public health crises in modern history, the San Joaquin Valley
has been hit particularly hard, resulting in mass disarray.
Small rural regions and underserved communities are now
experiencing threefold the challenges that existed prior to the
Last week a diverse coalition of 59 broad-based organizations,
which collectively represents both California front-line
communities as well as more than 450 California water agencies
… urged the California congressional delegation to include
funding for urgent water infrastructure and water affordability
needs as part of the next federal stimulus package titled the
Health and Economic Recovery Omnibus Emergency Solutions
(HEROES) Act …
Myron Ebell, who led Trump’s EPA transition team in 2016, told
E&E News that the agency had already consulted with the
White House on possible rules to freeze under this order. …
He provided possible targets, including provisions of the Clean
Air Act, Endangered Species Act and National Environmental
Policy Act. Anti-regulatory groups are now preparing ideas to
submit to the administration, he said.
In hundreds of cities across the USA, scientists hope
monitoring systems will provide an early warning if coronavirus
infections reemerge as communities in some states cautiously
reopen. These monitors don’t rely on testing patients or
tracing contacts. All that’s required? Human waste.
A study by the Department of Water Resources (DWR)
investigating the growth rate of juvenile Chinook salmon raised
in the Suisun Marsh area of Solano County was forced to
conclude early due to the ongoing COVID-19 health emergency.
Despite the change of plans, DWR scientists were still able to
gather all pertinent data and are confident the study will
provide useful information regarding how juvenile Chinook
Nine states have sued the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
for curtailing enforcement of rules on air and water pollution
during the COVID-19 pandemic, saying the pullback puts the
public at even greater risk.
Summer always means water, whether it’s an ocean, lake, river,
swimming pool or hot tub. But now that we’re worrying more
about germs, it’s natural to wonder: Will this season’s
swimming, surfing, floating and soaking be as safe as it used
to be? Yes, many experts say.
Imperial Irrigation District, California’s third largest public
power provider and the largest irrigation district in the
nation, will be extending its voluntary on-site
shelter-in-place program at designated critical facilities for
a core group of employees. To keep employees safe and to ensure
that the district’s water and energy systems remain operational
during the COVID-19 pandemic, 32 district employees have been
living and working at their job sites since April 25.
Technology is revolutionizing wastewater systems, which require
a lot of maintenance but are difficult to access under the
surface. Ari Goldfarb and Itai Boneh of Kando, a wastewater
solutions company, examine how technology is improving
wastewater systems and how Covid-19 is having an impact.
The extensive closure of offices, hotels, restaurants and other
commercial buildings in response to the coronavirus pandemic is
a potential health hazard once those structures are reopened to
the public. Of greatest concern to plumbing and water quality
experts is Legionnaires’ disease, a respiratory infection that
is the deadliest waterborne illness in the United States.
Facing uncertain revenues in the year ahead, state officials
said they would prioritize programs aimed at improving air
quality in disadvantaged communities, providing safe and
affordable drinking water and improving forest health
and fire protection.