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EPA says first day of oil spill spent 'planning'

LOS ANGELES (AP) — On the afternoon of the largest coastal oil spill in California in 25 years, graduate student Natalie Phares quickly organized a volunteer bucket brigade to clean a beach north of Santa Barbara.

Seven hours after the discovery of the spill, she was surprised to find her small crew …

Oil Spills

How Dry Is Texas? SMAP, TxSON Network Aim to Find Out

NASA's SMAP and University of Texas scientists are rounding up critical soil information for managing the Lone Star State's limited water.

NASA

To the last drop: Improving water supply forecasts for the Rio Grande | UCAR - University Corporation for Atmospheric Research

May 13, 2015 | Before the Rio Grande wends 1,900 miles across the desert Southwest, trickling to its end in the Gulf of Mexico, it begins life as a …

Weather

Floods Ravage Texas: Pictures

Texas

California drought: Farmers agree 25% water usage cut

California regulators have accepted an offer from farmers to reduce their water usage by 25% in an effort to combat the record four-year drought.

A group of several hundred farmers made the concession after state officials threatened to cut their water rights.

California has already demanded a 25% …

California Drought

Sentinel to measure ocean height

The sixth Sentinel in Europe's ambitious new multi-billion-euro Earth-observation project has been contracted from industry.

Sentinel-6a will measure …

Europe

Water Flowing From Toilet to Tap May Be Hard to Swallow

FOUNTAIN VALLEY, Calif. — Water spilled out of a spigot, sparklingly clear, into a plastic cup. Just 45 minutes earlier, it was effluent, piped over from Orange County’s wastewater treatment plant next door. At a specialized plant, it then went through several stages of purification that left it …

Natural Resources

How Satellites Can Monitor California’s Underground Water

California needs to preserve its groundwater, and it's turning to satellite monitoring to keep tabs on how it's doing.The post How Satellites Can …

Natural Resources

The Billions of Gallons of Water Wasted by Accident Every Year

Kill your lawn? Yeah, you need to do that as drought grips not just California but much of the western United States. Half of California’s …

California

How Bad Policies And Bad Ideas Caused The California Water Shortage

The signs of it are everywhere. The once-Golden State is suffering from what has been called the Great California Train Shortage. Thousands have lost their jobs because they are unable to get to work. It is said that ten of thousands will lose their jobs every year unless train tracks are laid

The Greening of the World’s Ports

VANCOUVER, British Columbia—On a bright, sunny March day, the industrial hubbub at the Port Metro Vancouver in British Columbia blends seamlessly …

The Little Fish Foretelling the Future of Ocean Life Harmed by the Deepwater Horizon Disaster

NEW ORLEANS—The Gulf killifish, a hardy little minnow, is a common sight all along the Gulf of Mexico coast. The males, which turn vibrantly yellow …

Biology

An underwater volcano has been spewing lava off Oregon's coast all week

PORTLAND, Ore. (Reuters) - An undersea volcano about 300 miles (480 km) off Oregon's coast has been spewing lava for the past seven days, confirming forecasts made last fall and giving researchers unique insight into a hidden ocean hot spot, a scientist said on Friday.

Researchers know of two …

Volcanoes

California's drought has been a dream come true — for pests

It was a single limb on a walnut tree that had withered and died. A small loss, and one Craig McNamara could have easily missed during his orchard inspection in June. But come July, the tree lost a few more. By August, it was dead. Botryosphaeria, the fungal disease that took it, has now spread to …

Agriculture

Lake Mead Has Dropped To Its Lowest Level Ever

Less water, less electricity

California isn't the only one having a water crisis. Yesterday, Lake Mead sank to its lowest level yet. The watery behemoth created by the construction of the Hoover Dam in the 1930s was reduced to a mere 1,080.07 feet above sea level, minimally smaller than the previous …

Lake Mead

AT HOOVER, A POWERFUL THIRST

INSIDE HOOVER DAM — The floor rumbled under Mark Cook. His legs vibrated as he stood in a tunnel tucked into the thick base of Hoover Dam, 430 feet below the tourists looking out over Lake Mead. Beneath him, water roared through steel pipes 13 feet tall. Nearby, heavy turbines hummed with …

Thirst

California Drought Drives an 'Explosive,' Longer Wildfire Season

There was a time when fire season in California started around May and went through September. Now, thanks to a drought that's stretching into its fourth year, the state seems to have become a year-round tinderbox.

The long running drought has "created explosive fire conditions," said Mike Mohler, a …

California

Incredible image of a giant 17-mile-long iceberg that just broke off Antarctica

On March 6, 2015, the U.S. National Ice Center (NIC) discovered a new iceberg adrift off the coast of Antarctica. Measuring 27 kilometers (17 miles) long, iceberg B-34 meets the 19-kilometer minimum required for tracking by the NIC.

The berg appears to have fractured from West Antarctica’s Getz Ice …

MIT Wins Prize for Process to Desalinate Seawater

The Massachusetts Institute of Technology team has won the grand prize of $140,000 in an engineering competition to come up with technology to make salt water drinkable, according to an announcement from USAID.

A total of five teams competed for $200,000 in the Desal Prize competition, which sought …

MIT

William Shatner Wants to Build a Drought-Busting Pipe for California

"If it doesn't rain next year, what do 20 million people in the breadbasket of the world do?"

If William Shatner can teleport himself off an exploding planet, as he did to to save himself in the original "Star Trek" series, certainly he can move some water from the Pacific Northwest to …

Silicon Valley’s Water Conservation Conundrum

Menlo Park, Calif. — Silicon Valley has a richly deserved reputation as the world’s engine of technology innovation, with a track record that includes developing integrated circuits, microprocessors, personal computers and smartphones. This is a culture of confidence and bravado. Ask a bunch of …

Silicon Valley

One chart sums up the real problem in the California drought — and it isn't almonds

You might've heard that if there's one food you shouldn't be buying in the middle of California's drought, it's almonds.

Compared with many other nuts and veggies, almonds seem particularly wasteful, requiring a whole gallon of water per nut.

But what about the foods we eat that aren't nuts or …

Almonds

California is already giving in to pressure from cities over its drought plan

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - California water regulators on Saturday revised a still-tentative drought plan by easing cuts for Los Angeles and San Diego and bumping up reduction targets in the areas that consume the most water.

The changes are an apparent response to criticism from cities, which would …

California Drought

How to fix California's drought problem

By now you've heard about the epic drought threatening every California water user, from almond growers to swimming-pool owners, resulting in …

Natural Resources

California Farmers Fret About Drought ... And Copper Thieves

Farmers in rural Madera County, California, are worried about water—no surprise considering the state's intense drought. But now they have something else to concern them: copper.

The red metal's overall scarcity and its wide range of uses make it more profitable to steal than most other metals. …

Copper

How Oil Spills Can Literally Break Fish Hearts

Tiny amounts of Gulf oil, toxic to baby fish, could have worldwide implications, scientists say.

Editor's Note: This is the second of four stories marking the fifth anniversary of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.

Oil-slathered birds were a potent symbol of the ecological cost of …

Zoology

The Drought Isn't California's Only Water Problem

Whether you live in or out of California, you are probably looking for something, anything, just one dang thing that will help you understand this …

Natural Resources

The Case for Fixing the Leaks: Protecting people and saving water while supporting economic growth in the Great Lakes region

Every day, nearly six billion gallons of expensive, treated water is simply lost. Why? Crumbling infrastructure. Leaky, aging pipes and outdated …

Water Data For Texas

Reservoir

Percent Full

Water Level
(ft)

Height Above Conservation Pool
(ft)

Reservoir Storage
(acre-ft)

Conservation Storage
(acre-ft)

Conservation …

Texas