While expensive solutions like new reservoirs and seawater desalination grab attention, California communities are quietly building up their capacity to clean stormwater and wastewater for reuse for irrigation, industry and, yes, drinking water too. Continue readingIn times of scarcity, California’s best new source of water? Reuse.
Author: & the West, Stanford University
Floating wind turbines can produce energy from miles offshore. Some Pacific Coast sites the federal government has chosen for wind-energy projects intersect with important fishing grounds. Can they coexist?Continue readingPlans for deep-sea wind farms face resistance from Northern California’s fishing industry
Four out of five agricultural operations in the state are small farms, but many rules, from labor law to water resource planning, were designed for industrial-size players. Can the state make room for small and diverse businesses to succeed?Continue readingSmall farmers bear an extra burden as California agricultural policies respond to a changing climate
When a historic drought gripped California and the Bay Area, water managers came together to keep drinkable water in the homes of vulnerable areas in Marin and Contra Costa Counties. Two veterans of those efforts describe the dramatic process, and consider lessons it offers for today’s imminent drought.Continue readingHow Ingenuity and Desperate Measures Kept Urban Water Flowing During the ‘77 Drought
Most local authorities, private experts and activists agree that since 1994, when the EPA started to address the issue, cleanup efforts for hundreds of uranium mining sites have been slow. Continue readingCan a New EPA Office Expedite Uranium Cleanup on Navajo Land? Not if Past Is Prologue.
Taking down four dams in Oregon and California would be a coup for advocates of dam removal. It could also mark the moment when their movement rediscovers a more realistic goal: bringing restoration into balance with human needs.Continue readingThe Winners, the Losers, and the Landscape That Might Emerge If the Klamath River Dams Disappear
Once prized as a key ingredient in fire retardant foam, non-stick pans and many everyday items, a synthetic chemical’s appearance in public water supply wells raises questions of how to protect the public from unknown health hazards.Continue readingConcern Over the “Forever Chemical” PFAS Is High, But Remedies Remain Remote
Farmers, large and small, are beginning to grapple with what the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act means for them. Many expect to see cutbacks on pumping once the program is fully implemented in 2040.Continue readingSmall Farmers Wait for California’s Groundwater Hammer to Fall
As field hands rethink traveling to the U.S., some farmers have been forced to watch their produce rot in the fields. Many others are cutting back acreage.Continue readingA ‘Climate of Fear’ Accelerates Existing Labor Shortages on California’s Farms
With the state committed to decarbonizing its electricity supply by 2045, Farmington’s coal-fired power plant and mine are set to shut down. Faced with the loss of their largest employer, city leaders are considering whether to get behind an uncertain carbon-capture technology, or turn to renewables and the tourist economy. Continue readingAs Plant Faces Closure, New Mexico City Weights Bet on Clean Coal Technology