Archive | February, 2015

Soil Media Protects Salmon from Runoff Toxics

Soil media can reverse the toxic effects of urban runoff that otherwise quickly kills young coho salmon and their insect prey, according to new research by Washington State University, NOAA Fisheries, and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Polluted stormwater has been identified as a risk factor for many threatened and endangered salmon and steelhead […]

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Soil Science Society of America Celebrates the International Year of Soils

The Global Soil Partnership at the Food & Agriculture Organization of the United Nations has declared 2015 the International Year of Soils. In celebration, the Soil Science Society of America (SSSA) is coordinating a series of activities throughout 2015 to educate the public about the importance of this precious natural resource. SSSA has organized a […]

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Homeowner Assistance Program to Help Correct Improper Sewer Connections

On Jan. 23, the Pittsburgh Water and Sewer Authority (PWSA) in Pennsylvania announced that it will create a Residential Homeowner Assistance Program (RHAP) to aid Pittsburgh homeowners facing potentially steep costs to remove stormwater connections from sanitary sewers. This requirement was imposed on property owners by the 2004 Consent Order and Agreement between PWSA, the […]

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USGS Releases New Groundwater Toolbox

The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) recently completed and made available online its national summary report on the quality of the U.S. groundwater — an assessment of 6,600 wells. Groundwater provides drinking water for about 115 million people, or more than a third of the nation. Yet 22% of groundwater samples contained at least one contaminant […]

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New Jersey Permit System Requires CSO Reduction, Enhanced Public Outreach

On Jan. 7, the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) announced steps to improve water quality in urban areas by requiring sewerage system operators to reduce combined sewer overflows (CSO). As part of this effort, DEP is issuing 25 permits to address 217 CSO discharge points, or outfalls, in the state. Most CSO discharge […]

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EPA, NOAA Disapprove Oregon’s Coastal Nonpoint Pollution Control Program

On Jan. 30, The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) disapproved of Oregon’s coastal nonpoint pollution control program. All states participating in the National Coastal Zone Management Program are required to develop a program describing how they will prevent and control polluted runoff in coastal waters. The agencies […]

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Successful Partnerships between Agriculture and Water Utilities Highlighted in White Paper

On Feb. 3, the National Association of Clean Water Agencies, AGree, and the U.S. Water Alliance released a white paper entitled Collaborating for Healthy Watersheds. The paper highlights nine successful municipal-agricultural collaborations across the U.S. that address water quality issues at the watershed level. The traditional approach of building more and more advanced water and […]

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Obama Issues New Executive Order on Flood Risk Management

On January 30, President Obama issued Executive Order 13690, “Establishing a Federal Flood Risk Management Standard and a Process for Further Soliciting and Considering Stakeholder Input.” The new Executive Order amends the existing Executive Order 11988 on Floodplain Management and adopts a higher flood standard for future federal investments in and affecting floodplains. This includes […]

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Copenhagen Neighborhood Redesigned With Climate in Mind

In August 2011, St. Kjeld, a low-lying neighborhood of Copenhagen, Denmark, experienced extreme flooding, with more than $1 billion in damages. However, the area will soon be home to a number of innovative green infrastructure and drainage projects, and is the first suburb in Denmark, if not the world, to be redesigned specifically for climate […]

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Crowdsourcing Water Data

Technology is increasing opportunities for crowdsourcing water data. CrowdHydrology, a new phone application that debuted at the American Geophysical Union meeting in Dec. 2014, allows citizen scientists to report stream depths at various gauging stations and is run in partnership with the U.S. Geological Survey. The stations have signs asking people to report the stream […]

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