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Water

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Can Modular Desalination Provide Cheap, Clean Water and Demand Response Too?

August 29, 2014 by Jeff St. John

Modular Deslination

The process of desalination isn’t nearly as energy-intensive as it was just a decade ago, thanks to new reverse-osmosis plant designs and nano-structured membranes that have drastically improved the energy efficiency of turning salt water into fresh water.[read more]

Greenland And West Antarctic Ice Sheet Loss More Than Doubled In Last Five Years

August 28, 2014 by Joseph Romm

Growing Ice Loss

A new study finds that both the Greenland ice sheet and West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) have seen an astonishing increase in ice loss in just the past five years. This first-ever extensive mapping of the two great ice sheets using the CryoSat-2 satellite confirms the findings.[read more]

Huge Ponds Hold Tar Sands Sludge, And Great Risks

August 28, 2014 by Danielle Droitsch

Tar Sands Sludge Pools

On August 4, 2014, the catastrophic failure of a mining company's dam in British Columbia, Canada, released over two-and-a-half billion gallons of contaminated water and liquids from a containment pond into the upper Faser River watershed.[read more]

New Brunswick Begins Ingenious Fracking Research

August 26, 2014 by Jessica Kennedy

New Study on Fracking and Water

 

In a brilliant initiative that I wish was implemented sooner, New Brunswick is going to investigate water quality in locations where hydraulic fracturing (fracking) operations to extract oil and natural gas from shale are likely to happen – before they happen.[read more]

Jet Stream Changes Driving Extreme Weather Linked Again To Global Warming, Arctic Ice Loss

August 21, 2014 by Joseph Romm

Jet Stream and Climate Change

California is suffering through drought, while the East Coast sees flooding. Both are worsened by global warming. But in recent years you may have noticed a disproportionate increase in record-smashing extreme weather and suspected that’s also linked to global warming.[read more]

Sustainability: Reconfiguring the Relationship Between Humanity, Energy, and the Natural World

August 21, 2014 by Roman Kilisek
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Sustainability and Relationships

A new ‘zeitgeist’ is increasingly taking hold in growing pockets of society, politics and the business world. All indications point to one direction – towards the concept of ‘sustainability’ dominating human behavior and thinking in the twenty-first century.[read more]

To Fight Climate Change we Have to Save the Rainforest

August 21, 2014 by Jessica Kennedy
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Rainforests and Climate Change

Most of us are concerned about how climate change will affect our corners of the world, but we need to be thinking about our most vital natural resources: tropical forests. Tropical and subtropical forests are the most biodiverse areas on the planet, and they even give us most of the oxygen we breathe.[read more]

How Badly Is the Wave and Tidal Industry Struggling? Likely Worse Than You Thought

August 19, 2014 by Stephen Lacey
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A decade after the surge of attention in marine energy technologies, the industry has not been able to overcome severe technical and financial challenges. As a result, installations have remained at pilot scale, while financing has been largely limited to government programs for testing and demonstrations.[read more]

Declining Air Quality in the Tar Sands Region: Is the Government Responding?

August 17, 2014 by Danielle Droitsch
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A new report released by the Alberta government reveals a concerning trend with declining air quality as a result of tar sands operations. While the report itself was just released, the air pollution information in the report is dated back to the year 2012.[read more]

Revised Water Bond Is the Right Response to California's Drought

August 17, 2014 by NRDC Switchboard

A broad array of stakeholders and interest groups joined Governor Brown to call for action on a proposed water bond that is slimmed down, focused on a key set of investments, and far superior to the $11.1 billion bond currently scheduled for the November ballot.[read more]

The US Humanitarian Intervention in Iraq: The Oil and Water Angle

August 15, 2014 by Amy Myers Jaffe

The success of stated limited U.S. humanitarian goals for the latest intervention in Iraq could hinge on more than the fate of minorities trapped on top of the Mount Sinjar. That is because the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) has taken control of critical water and oil infrastructure including the Mosul Dam.[read more]

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A Visit to the Aral Sea

August 14, 2014 by David Kroodsma
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Change in the Aral

When we considered crossing Central Asia in a Ride for Climate, I knew we had to visit the Aral Sea - or at least what remains of it. Even though the sea's demise wasn't due to global warming, it's one of the world's worst environmental catastrophes, serving an example of how humans can alter the planet.[read more]

Bad News For California: NOAA Lowers Chance Of El Niño To 65%, Predicts A Weak One

August 14, 2014 by Joseph Romm

California and Environmental Risk

The NOAA previously said the chances of an El Niño developing this year were at almost 4 out of 5. There was some evidence suggesting it might be a strong El Niño, the kind that generally brings a lot of rain to California. But the best chance for ending the brutal California drought seems to be disappearing.[read more]

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A Path to Carbon-Free Ammonia?

August 14, 2014 by N Nadir
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Ammonia and Carbon

The synthesis of the agricultural and chemical commodity ammonia, which is of critical importance to humanity, is currently inextricably involved with fossil fuels. This post discusses a publication in the primary scientific literature that suggests a path to decoupling ammonia synthesis from the industrial use of carbon.[read more]

Will de Blasio and Cuomo Make Sustainability a Higher Priority?

August 12, 2014 by Steven Cohen
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New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio has allowed the Mayor's Office of Long Term Planning and Sustainability to lose nearly all of its talented staff, while New York Governor Andrew Cuomo is using capital funds meant to finance environmental facilities to help pay for the Tappan Zee Bridge.[read more]