water

StateImpact Oklahoma
1:54 pm
Thu July 9, 2015

Record Rainfall Magnifies Problems For Oklahoma’s Aging Flood Control Dams

Oklahoma Conservation Commission Watershed Technician Dennis Boney inspects damage to Wildhorse 80's spillway in Garvin County.
Logan Layden / StateImpact Oklahoma

More than 2,000 dams in Oklahoma have protected lives and property from flooding for decades. But age is catching up with them, and many need repairs. And this spring’s record rainfall is putting dams under even more pressure.

Catastrophic flooding used to just be part of life in Oklahoma. Ask anyone who was around in the late 1950s, like Allen Hensley, who grew up on Rock Creek in south-central Oklahoma.

“My dad took me down and showed me Rock Creek when I was a boy; and a beautiful corn crop,” Hensley says. “And the next day it was water, flooded.”

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StateImpact Oklahoma
3:21 pm
Mon July 6, 2015

Record Rains Leave Oklahoma’s Inland Seaport Damaged And Dangerous

The Webbers Falls Lock and Dam in May 2015.
Flickr / USACETULSA

The McClellan-Kerr Navigation System that connects the Port of Catoosa — the nation’s furthest inland seaport — to the Gulf of Mexico is “a hell of a mess” after the area got nearly 20 inches of rain in May and June, port director Bob Portiss tell’s the Tulsa World.

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The Two-Way
6:21 pm
Wed July 1, 2015

Cities In California Conserved A Lot Of Water In May

The decrease in water usage comes from statewide mandatory water cuts that Gov. Jerry Brown put in place.
Rich Pedroncelli AP

Originally published on Wed July 1, 2015 6:49 pm

Cities in drought-plagued California took water conservation seriously in May. Residential water use went down by 28.9 percent in May, according to a press release from the State Water Resources Control Board.

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Environment
3:24 pm
Thu June 25, 2015

How A Historical Blunder Helped Create The Water Crisis In The West

A bathtub ring marks the high-water line on Nevada's Lake Mead, which is on the Colorado River, in 2013.
Julie Jacobson AP

Originally published on Mon July 6, 2015 2:28 pm

In 1922, seven Western states — Colorado, Utah, New Mexico, Arizona, Nevada, Wyoming and California — drew up an agreement on how to divide the waters of the Colorado River. But there was one big problem with the plan: They overestimated how much water the river could provide.

As a result, each state was promised more water than actually exists. This miscalculation — and the subsequent mismanagement of water resources in those states — has created a water crisis that now affects nearly 40 million Americans.

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Environment
5:40 pm
Mon June 22, 2015

EPA Official: Decisions On Climate Change Will Affect Economic Future Of U.S.

Originally published on Mon June 22, 2015 10:32 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

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World News
9:43 am
Sun June 21, 2015

Israel Bets On Recycled Water To Meet Its Growing Thirst

Farmer Efi Cohen inspects almond trees on a kibbutz south of Jerusalem. The Israeli government says it's safe to use treated sewage water to irrigate tree fruit, but not all crops.
Emily Harris NPR

Originally published on Sun June 21, 2015 10:20 pm

Recycling sewage water has helped free Israel, a desert country, from depending on rain.

Treated sewage water provides close to a quarter of Israel's demand for water, right behind desalination, the other major process that has eased Israel's fear of drought.

But making that water — from toilets, showers, and factories — clean enough to use is challenging.

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Environment
6:42 pm
Sat June 20, 2015

Residents Fight To Block Fracked Gas In New York's Finger Lakes

At an October protest, hundreds of "We Are Seneca Lake" members block the gates of Crestwood Midstream to protest against the expansion of fracked gas storage in the Finger Lakes.
PR Newswire AP

Originally published on Sat June 20, 2015 6:45 pm

New York state's Seneca Lake is the heart of the Finger Lakes, a beautiful countryside of steep glacier-carved hills and long slivers of water with deep beds of salt. It's been mined on Seneca's shore for more than a century.

The Texas company Crestwood Midstream owns the mine now, and stores natural gas in the emptied-out caverns. It has federal approval to increase the amount, and it's seeking New York's OK to store 88 million gallons of propane as well.

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Environment
3:22 pm
Fri June 19, 2015

Closed Shipping Lanes Pose Yet Another Problem For Oklahoma’s Wheat Farmers

The Newt Graham Lock and Dam near Inola, Okla.
Credit Tyler / Flickr

Slow moving storms that dumped record amounts of rain on Oklahoma in April and May killed the five-year drought, but damaged wheat crops in western Oklahoma. This after one of the worst wheat harvests on record in 2014.

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The Two-Way
1:02 pm
Wed June 17, 2015

NASA Satellites Show World's Thirst For Groundwater

The Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment, or GRACE, used a pair of satellites to measure water use in the world's aquifers.
NASA

Originally published on Wed June 17, 2015 6:25 pm

New data from NASA's GRACE satellites show that many of the world's biggest aquifers are being sucked dry at a rate far greater than they are being replenished. Although scientists don't know how much water is left, they hope their findings will serve as a "red flag" for regions that may be overusing water.

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StateImpact Oklahoma
1:24 pm
Mon June 15, 2015

Why Midwest City and Del City Oppose Norman’s Plan to Reuse Wastewater

Lake Thunderbird, near Norman, Okla.
Credit Logan Layden / StateImpact Oklahoma

It was around this time last year that the Norman City Council decided to stake its water future on reuse — sending cleaned wastewater back into Lake Thunderbird, the city’s main water source. It’s an ambitious, future-looking plan Norman Mayor Cindy Rosenthal says is in line with the state’s goal of using no more water in 2060 than it did in 2012.

But Norman isn’t the only city that relies on Lake Thunderbird for its water, and Midwest City and Del City would also need to be behind the plan before it goes before the Department of Environmental Quality for approval.

They aren’t.

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