Water Troubles

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Addie
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Re: Water Troubles

#326

Post by Addie » Thu Nov 01, 2018 1:05 pm

Inside Climate News: Fracking Water Use Explodes

As the fracking boom matures, the drilling industry’s use of water and other fluids to produce oil and natural gas has grown dramatically in the past several years, outstripping the growth of the fossil fuels it produces.

A new study published Wednesday in the peer-reviewed journal Science Advances says the trend—a greater environmental toll than previously described—results from recent changes in drilling practices as drillers compete to make new wells more productive. For example, well operators have increased the length of the horizontal portion of wells drilled through shale rock where rich reserves of oil and gas are locked up.

They also have significantly increased the amount of water, sand and other materials they pump into the wells to hydraulically fracture the rock and thus release more hydrocarbons trapped within the shale.

The amount of water used per well in fracking jumped by as much as 770 percent, or nearly 9-fold, between 2011 and 2016, the study says. Even more dramatically, wastewater production in each well’s first year increased up to 15-fold over the same years.



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Addie
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Re: Water Troubles

#327

Post by Addie » Mon Dec 10, 2018 9:28 am

PBS News Hour
Freshwater is getting saltier, threatening people and wildlife

Salts that de-ice roads, parking lots and sidewalks keep people safe in winter. But new research shows they are contributing to a sharp and widely rising problem across the U.S. At least a third of the rivers and streams in the country have gotten saltier in the past 25 years. And by 2100, more than half of them may contain at least 50 percent more salt than they used to. Increasing salinity will not just affect freshwater plants and animals but human lives as well—notably, by affecting drinking water.

Sujay Kaushal, a biogeochemist at the University of Maryland, College Park, recounts an experience he had when visiting relatives in New Jersey. When getting a drink from the tap, “I saw a white film on the glass.” After trying to scrub it off, he found, “it turned out to be a thin layer of salt crusting the glass.”

When Kaushal, who studies how salt invades freshwater sources, sampled the local water supply he found not just an elevated level of the sodium chloride, widely used in winter to de-ice outdoor surfaces, but plenty of other salts such as sodium bicarbonate and magnesium chloride. He also found similar concentrations of these chemicals in most rivers along the east coast, including the Potomac, which provides drinking water for Washington, D.C. Where did all of it come from?

De-icing salts, Kaushal determined, are part of the problem, slowly corroding our infrastructure. Estimates put the cost of repairs at about $1,000 per ton of de-icing salt imposed on the environment. But he also found a link to acid rain, caused by the air pollution from burning fossil fuels in power plants and cars. “Decades of acid rain have dissolved not just portions of rock and soils but buildings and roads as well—all of which have added various salts to the water,” he says. Although the acidity of the rain is decreasing, it is still present. Meantime the amount of concrete and asphalt in the world have continued to expand.

Salts can free up other pollutants, too. In his own house near Washington, D.C., Kaushal once had black water coming from the tap. “The salts in the water were leaching manganese — a neurotoxin — from the old pipes in the neighborhood,” he says.



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Volkonski
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Re: Water Troubles

#328

Post by Volkonski » Mon Dec 10, 2018 9:39 am

Time to invest in companies that do desalination.


Image“If everyone fought for their own convictions there would be no war.”
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Re: Water Troubles

#329

Post by Addie » Tue Jan 01, 2019 8:28 pm

San Diego Union-Tribune
Winter is shrinking, Scripps study finds, posing new fire, water risks

Across the mountains of the West, the landscape of winter is changing.

Deep snowpacks that held fast through winter, then melted in a torrent each spring, are instead seeping away earlier in the year. The period of winter weather is shrinking, too, with autumn lasting longer and spring starting earlier.

The findings by Amato Evan, a professor of atmospheric and climate science with Scripps Institution of Oceanography, show changes to Western hydrology that could jeopardize water resources, flood control, fire management and winter recreation.

His results were published this month in the Journal of Applied Meteorology and Climatology, and presented at the American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting in Washington, D.C.

Aerial photos and snow surveys illustrate how levels vary from year to year. But Evan’s study looked not only at how much snow there is, but also how it accumulates and then runs off.

Climate models have predicted the snowpack would diminish earlier in the season and melt more gradually as the planet warms. Evan affirmed those projections through an analysis of data from 1982 through 2017.



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Re: Water Troubles

#330

Post by Addie » Tue Jan 01, 2019 8:37 pm

Mother Jones
Like fruit, vegetables, and almonds? Scientists have bad news.

So far, this winter has brought ample snows to the Sierra Nevada, the spine of mountains that runs along California’s eastern flank. That’s good news for Californians, because the range’s melted snow provides 60 percent of the state’s water supply. Anyone in the United States who likes fruit, vegetables, and nuts should rejoice, too, because water flowing from the Sierra’s streams and rivers is the main irrigation source for farms in the arid Central Valley, which churns out nearly a quarter of the food consumed here.

But the Sierra snowpack has shown an overall declining trend for decades—most dramatically during the great California drought of 2012-2016—and will dwindle further over the next several decades, a growing body of research suggests. In the latest, published in the peer-reviewed Geophysical Research Letters journal, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory researchers lay out what they call a “future of consistent low-to-no snowpack.” In other words, a new normal wherein the robust snowpack developing this year would be an almost unthinkable anomaly.

To get a picture of what water planners can expect in the coming decades, the team focused on the headwaters feeding 10 major reservoirs designed to capture snowmelt from the Sierra each year. Using averages from 1985 to 2005 as a baseline, they applied nine different climate models. They assumed global greenhouse gas emissions would continue rising at present rates —that is, a “business as usual” scenario with no effective global deal to cut greenhouse emissions and no major technological breakthroughs.

The results: By mid-century (2039–2059), the average annual snowpack will fall by 54.4 percent compared to the late-20th century baseline. By the time today’s teens are in their 70s, it will be 79.3 percent beneath the old standard. To analyze massive amounts of water, planners think in acre-feet—the amount needed to submerge an acre of land by one foot. At the end of the last century, the Sierra Nevada captured an average of 8.76 million acre-feet. By mid-century, they project, the average will fall to 4 million acre-feet; and by century’s end, 1.81 million acre-feet.

The Central Valley Project—a federally run network of dams, reservoirs, and canals that waters about a third California’s irrigated farmland and provides water and electricity to millions of urban users, all from snow melt—could become a what economists called a “stranded asset” in such a scenario: a multi-billion dollar public investment that lacks sufficient water to perform its tasks.



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Re: Water Troubles

#331

Post by Tiredretiredlawyer » Sun Jan 13, 2019 11:53 am

What think ye, Fogbow Floridians?

https://www.usnews.com/news/best-states ... nvironment
Florida Gov. DeSantis Signs Order to Fight Algae, Red Tide

DeSantis said he will seek $2.5 billion over the next four years for Everglades restoration and water resources. The order not only touches on algae problems, but rising sea levels and the ongoing battle with Georgia over water diverted for Atlanta's use instead of flowing downstream to Apalachicola Bay. The reduction of fresh water entering the bay has hurt the region's oyster industry.

He didn't say where the money would come from, and his office didn't immediately respond when asked about the funding. Late in the day, DeSantis demanded the resignations of all nine members of the South Florida Water Management District, which oversees the Everglades area. The board in November extended a lease with sugar farmers for land needed for a reservoir that is key to water purification efforts, angering DeSantis.

While critics often said DeSantis' predecessor, U.S. Sen. Rick Scott, ignored science and rising sea levels, DeSantis addressed it on his second full day in office. He is creating an Office of Resiliency tasked with protecting coastal communities and wildlife from sea level rise.


“A black woman can invent something for the benefit of humankind.” -Bessie Blount-Griffin, physical therapist, inventor of devices for disabled WWII veterans, and forensic scientist.

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Volkonski
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Re: Water Troubles

#332

Post by Volkonski » Sun Jan 13, 2019 1:21 pm

A $3 billion problem: Miami-Dade’s septic tanks are already failing due to sea rise

https://www.miamiherald.com/news/local/ ... 32115.html
Miami-Dade has tens of thousands of septic tanks, and a new report reveals most are already malfunctioning — the smelly and unhealthy evidence of which often ends up in people’s yards and homes. It’s a billion-dollar problem that climate change is making worse.

As sea level rise encroaches on South Florida, the Miami-Dade County study shows that thousands more residents may be at risk — and soon. By 2040, 64 percent of county septic tanks (more than 67,000) could have issues every year, affecting not only the people who rely on them for sewage treatment, but the region’s water supply and the health of anyone who wades through floodwaters.

“That’s a huge deal for a developed country in 2019 to have half of the septic tanks not functioning for part of the year,” said Miami Waterkeeper Executive Director Rachel Silverstein. “That is not acceptable.”

:snippity:

Sea level rise is pushing the groundwater even higher, eating up precious space and leaving the once dry dirt soggy. Waste water doesn’t filter like it’s supposed to in soggy soil. In some cases, it comes back out, turning a front yard into a poopy swamp.


Image“If everyone fought for their own convictions there would be no war.”
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