All things freshwater: news, analysis, humor, reviews, and commentary from Michael E. 'Aquadoc' Campana, hydrogeologist, hydrophilanthropist, Professor of Hydrogeology and Water Resources Management in the Geography Program of the College of Earth, Ocean, and Atmospheric Sciences (CEOAS) at Oregon State University, Emeritus Professor of Hydrogeology at the University of New Mexico, Past President of the American Water Resources Association and Past Chair of the Scientists & Engineers Division of the National Ground Water Association. He is founder and president of the nonprofit Ann Campana Judge Foundation, an organization involved with WaSH (Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene) in Central America. CYA statement: the opinions expressed herein are solely those of Michael E. Campana and not those of CEOAS, Oregon State University, ACJF, AWRA, NGWA, my spouse Mary Frances, or any other person or organization.
Texas Agriculture Law Blog Don't let the name fool you - there are lots of water issues in agriculture and Tiffany Dowell of Texas A&M University does a fabulous job with this important Internet resource. Give it a read - I do every day!
The Way of Water Oregon State University Geography PhD Student, Jennifer Veilleux, records her fieldwork, research, and thoughts about transboundary water resources development in the Nile River and Mekong River basins. Particular attention is given to Ethiopia's Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam and Laos' Xayaburi Dam projects.
Thirsty in Suburbia Gayle Leonard documents things from the world of water that make us smile: particularly funny, amusing and weird items on bottled water, water towers, water marketing, recycling, the art-water nexus and working.
This Day in Water History Michael J. 'Mike' McGuire, engineer extraordinaire, NAE member, and author of 'The Chlorine Revolution', blogs about historical happenings in the fields of drinking water and wastewater keyed to calendar dates.
WaSH Resources New publications, web sites and multi-media on water, sanitation and hygiene (WaSH).
Water 50/50 From Jay Famiglietti at UC-Irvine. Fifty lectures in fifty weeks: The 2012 Birdsall-Dreiss Distinguished Lectureship. A global lecture tour delivering the message about our changing water cycle, groundwater depletion, and the future of freshwater availability.
Water For The Ages Abby, another PNWer, writes about global water issues with passion and concern.
Watering the Desert Aptly-titled blog by CJ Brooks, a lawyer-hydrologist-geologist from Tucson, AZ.
Watershed Moments: Thoughts from the Hydrosphere From Sarah Boon - rediscovering her writing and editing roots after 13 years, primarily as an environmental scientist. Her writing centres around creative non-fiction, specifically memoir and nature writing. The landscapes of western Canada are her main inspiration.
WaterWired All things fresh water: news, comment, and analysis from hydrogeologist Michael E. Campana, Professor at Oregon State University.
Watery Foundation Tom Swihart, formerly of the Florida Department of Environmental Protection, tells all about water management in the Sunshine State.
Western Water Blog The 'mystery blog' about Western USA water issues. What more can I say?
Wisdom in Water, Please... Kate Wilkins-Wells , who manages the Northwest Kansas Groundwater Management District No. 4, provides her wisdom on water issues.
xAnalytical Doug Walker's xAnalytical blog:Turning Data and Information into Knowledge
But as the article points out, the CWA is showing its age (see quote below). Specific recommendations from a 2009 conference:
1) allowing for greater targeting of priority pollution on a watershed basis; 2) better integrating of CWA and Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA) requirements; 3) using market-based solutions, such as water quality trading, incentives, or regulatory strategies, to encourage adoption of innovative technologies for point and nonpoint sources; and 4) creating a new funding paradigm that provides adequate money for state administration of CWA and the capital projects undertaken by local governments.
And finally, thanks again to Robert, here's thereal story behind the 1969 'burning' of the Cuyahoga Rver and the iconic picture shown here, which actually dates from 1952. Seems the Cuyahoga had burned before 1969. But in 1969 the timing was right to motivate people to think about stronger water pollution laws.
So, happy birthday, CWA - you don't look a day over 39!
“Despite being landmark legislation in the 1970s that led to significant achievements, the Clean Water Act is now a 20th century tool trying to address 21st century problems. As a nation, we must re-examine how to better address water quality issues to meet our current and future needs.” - WEF President Paul Freedman, 2009
Last April I postedon GRACE's work on Long Island, which gets all of its drinking water from groundwater. I have since learned from Kyle Rabinat GRACE that some groups on Long Island are looking to developing a regional governance/management authority - a great idea - local control by professional water managers.
A coalition of environmental, civic, academic, good government and water professionals has met for the past five years to research how Long Island can secure effective, professional water management. Our proposal: to establish the same approach to water management that 70 percent of the rest of New York already enjoys. Professional managers would oversee the quality and quantity of the water in our aquifers, to ensure that our supply is sustainably used and protected far into the future.
Beyond Long Island, New York State relies primarily on surface water -- using the 76,000 lakes, rivers and reservoirs on the other side of Long Island Sound. Three river-basin management agencies, known as "compacts," manage those major supplies.
They are an excellent model for Long Island. Instead of organizing an agency based on river basins, however, we would organize ours according to where our water is stored: the aquifers beneath Nassau and Suffolk.
An aquifer management agency would protect and maintain the groundwater, our one source of drinking water. The agency's staff, with public input, would develop short- and long-term management plans, study groundwater supply, develop a comprehensive bicounty regional and sub-regional computer model to analyze parts of Long Island at risk from saltwater intrusion or pollution, and evaluate ways to improve aquifer protection. It would also define the sustainable amount of water that can be used without depleting streams or causing saltwater intrusion.
The cost for these services would be about equal to the price of one cup of premium coffee per person per year, based on annual pumpage, and could be added as a usage fee on water bills.
As a Long Island native (West Hempstead) I hope to be involved in this process in some small fashion.
"Alex Prud'homme closes his book [The Ripple Effect] predicting that because most communities have not yet run out of water, they will continue to take it for granted through waste, contamination and mismanagement. Let's make Long Island an exception." - Sarah Meyland, from her Op-Ed
Last week I posted an update on the Mississippi v. Memphis groundwater case. I learned from reporter Tom Charlier that folks from the University of Memphis had presented an alternative view on the flow system at a conference last year. A journal article is in preparation.
Brian Waldron of the University of Memphis was kind enough to send me a PDF of the Power Point he and Daniel Larsen presented at a conference in 2011. He gave me permission to post it (may take a while to download):
They postulate that under proposed predevelopment conditions (shown below), the amount of groundwater that flowed from Mississippi into Shelby County, Tennessee (Memphis metropolitan area), was 141,725 cubic meters per day (about 37.4 MGD).
Under 2007 conditions, shown below, the amount flowing from Mississippi into Shelby County, Tennessee, was approximately 101,225 cubic meters per day (about 26.7 MGD).
So it looks like development has cost Tennessee groundwater, not Mississippi - about 40, 470 cubic meters per day (10.7 MGD). If this seems odd, remember - there is groundwater pumpage on the Mississippi side of the border.
So who's stealing from whom?
I am not in a position to evaluate their assumptions; I do they know they assumed a constant aquifer thickness (255 m or about 835 feet) and an average transmissivity of 2850 square meters per day (about 30,700 square feet per day). Use of an 'average' transmissivity suggests that spatially variable transmissivities were employed but I am unsure of that. It could simply mean that number is an average of all the values in the aquifer, and that single value was used in the flow calculations.
Curious to see what the blowback will be.
I will be anxious to see the journal article.
I think the fat lady has not yet sung - see today's quote.
"We are still evaluating our options with this." - Jan Schaefer, Mississippi Attorney General's office (email to Tom Charlier, April 2011)
Circle of Blue Circle of Blue uses journalism, scientific research, and conversations from around the world to bring the story of the global freshwater crisis to life. Here you’ll find new water reports, news headlines, and hear from leading scientists.
Drink Water For Life The idea is simple. Drink water or other cheap beverages instead of expensive lattes, sodas, and bottled water for a set period of time. A day, a week, a month, Lent, Ramadan, Passover, or some other holiday period.
eFlowNet Newsletter From the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) this newsletter has lots of information about environmental flows and related issues.
Sustainable Water Resources Roundtable Since 2002, the Sustainable Water Resources Roundtable (SWRR) has brought together federal, state, corporate, non-profit and academic sectors to advance our understanding of the nation’s water resources and to develop tools for their sustainable management.