Water Stewardship
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Latest news on the state of the Earth's water resources.
Curated by Bert Guevara
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Ocean acidification on climate change can kill fish life, say experts | WNN – Women News Network

Ocean acidification on climate change can kill fish life, say experts | WNN – Women News Network | Water Stewardship | Scoop.it

Researchers warn that marine life could be dramatically affected as climate change threatens to cause severe reduction of plankton–the key source of nutrient−in some ocean regions by the end of the century.

There are plenty more fish in the sea − but not for too much longer in some parts of the world, researchers say. And the reason is very simple: the food on which they all depend faces a marked decline.

Phytoplankton are the single-celled plants that are the basic building blocks of most marine life. In particular, they sustain zooplankton − tiny animals that are eaten in turn by fish. The study found evidence that, by 2100, zooplankton biomass will be 11% less than it is today, with obvious implications for the fish that feed on them.

The report says that sea surface temperature is predicted to increase by 2ºC on average globally by 2080-2100. The consequences of this increase will include changes in ocean circulation and higher water column stratification, where water of different densities forms distinct layers instead of mixing, affecting the availability of nutrients.

The depletion expected in the amount of plankton in the marine food web could reduce fish biomass in 47% of the total global ocean area, especially in tropical oceans.

Bert Guevara's insight:

Bad news for fish-eaters. Future supply decreasing due to ocean acidification, due to excess carbon emissions.

“In the ocean regions that lose more phytoplankton and zooplankton biomass, fish biomass may also decrease dramatically.” He said this would especially affect pelagic species − deep-sea fish that are not bottom dwellers.

He said the oceans’ role in moderating climate change would also be damaged: “As there will be less phytoplankton, absorption of CO2 from the atmosphere by the oceans will be lower, as plankton is responsible for half of the planet’s photosynthetic activity. This in turn will reduce the ocean’s capacity to regulate the climate.”

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Your Garbage Is Polluting Even The Deep, Remote Reaches of the Ocean - Smithsonian ("man's footprint")

Your Garbage Is Polluting Even The Deep, Remote Reaches of the Ocean - Smithsonian ("man's footprint") | Water Stewardship | Scoop.it
Earthweek - A Diary of the Planet
Your Garbage Is Polluting Even The Deep, Remote Reaches of the Ocean
Smithsonian
... civilization.

Our planet's oceans are huge and mysterious, and there are still stretches of the ocean floor that remain unexplored. But that doesn't mean they're pristine and untouched: a new study foundeven the deepest, most remote areas of the oceans contain man-made litter. As a species, we're just a bunch of slobs.

An international team of researchers led by the Institute of Marine Research's Christopher Pham performed the most extensive survey of the ocean floor yet, using remotely-operated camera vehicles and trawling nets to check for trash in 32 sites ranging from the Arctic Ocean to the Mediterranean Sea. In 588 separate surveys, the team found man-made trash every single time.

The garbage observed included fishing nets, beer cans, food packaging, and even a toilet, though plastic was by far the most prevalent material. That poses a particular hazard, since deep sea creatures often die from mistakenly eating plastic.

Bert Guevara's insight:

Where man hasn't yet reached in the depths of the oceans, there garbage lies!!!

Is garbage man's footprint in today's world?

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US city to pump sewage water directly into homes - YouTube ("drought can do this even to the richest")

Wichita Falls, Texas, is getting ready to pump sewage water directly back to residents' homes, instead of into the Wichita River. This will be the first time...

 

Bert Guevara's insight:

This is the beginning of Climate Change adaptation for drought-hit cities. A US city has decided that it has to be done.

This is a warning to indifferent people who continue to pollute our water supplies -- one day you might also be drinking your own "poopie" water!!!

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Manila Bay swimmers ignore floating garbage ("only in the Philippines; swimming at any cost")

Swimmers in Manila Bay enjoys the beach despite of the filth and the floating garbage that surrounds the area. Subscribe to the ABS-CBN News channel! - http://goo.gl/7lR5ep Visit our website...
Bert Guevara's insight:

This summer tradition of swimming in garbage-filled coastal areas shows the strange resiliency of the Filipinos against known risks. 

This complacency towards health risks from dirty waters shows the short-sighted value of present pleasure vis-a-vis the long-term effects. Can someone explain this to me in scientific terms?

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WARNING | PH seeing highest sea level rise in the world - thrice the global average, in fact

WARNING | PH seeing highest sea level rise in the world - thrice the global average, in fact | Water Stewardship | Scoop.it
The Philippines has seen three times the global average in sea level rise, exacerbating its vulnerability to natural disasters, climate experts said at a conference in Paris this week.

Michael Williams of the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) said the Philippines posted the highest average increase in sea levels, at 60 cms, against the global average of 19 cms since the year 1901.

It is a "major force of nature" against which countries like the Philippines can do little, but, said Williams, "there's a lot to be done with disaster risk prevention, alert systems, and so forth. But you have to understand that there is that additional risk."

Williams elaborated: "The global average of sea level rise since the year 1900 or 1901 has been 19 cm for the last hundred and fifteen years. However that varies widely from region to region, because of wind, because of currents in the ocean, because of changes in the land which rises and falls. So it so happens that in the area of the Philippines, where the cyclone happened last year, probably because of the trade winds and the currents of the Pacific, you have a massive amount of water between the Philippines and where the winds are pushing the water. The sea level rise, according to several of the stations we have operational there, is much much more than the global average. It's more like 60cm, and it's the highest sea level rise in the world."

According to van Ypersele, the Philippines is greatly affected by rising sea levels around the world, and because of this, even stronger storms in the future could wreak even greater damage on the country. Notably, typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan) last Nov. 8 was declared earliler the strongest cyclone to hit any part of the globe for 2013, drawing a Category 5 ranking from meteorologists. Asked how the Philippines can brace for the worst, he said there’s  no other way than to drastically change the way structures are built in coastal areas.

Bert Guevara's insight:

The Philippines makes another Guinness world record - the highest sea level rise!

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How to fix the 10 worst wastes of water ("a lot of work still to be done by both business & consumers")

How to fix the 10 worst wastes of water ("a lot of work still to be done by both business & consumers") | Water Stewardship | Scoop.it
Nike, Coca-Cola, Levi Strauss and Microsoft are working to curb water-guzzling practices in textiles, bottling, irrigation and beyond. 

Globally speaking, water scarcity is an even more acute concern — one under the microscope this weekend at dozens of World Water Day events and scrutinized in the latest update to the United Nations World Water Development report. By 2025, the United Nations figures that nearly half of the world's pollution will live in water-stressed regions, making solutions to this challenge the focus for an emerging wave of technology and infrastructure services companies.

There are many reasons sustainability executives are watching water far more closely and seeking to reduce their organizations' consumption — such as shifting climate patterns, rising populations and the expansion of emerging economies. While some of these things may seem beyond our immediate control, there are factors exacerbating the situation that we can influence more directly — for good or for bad.

By moving to eliminate some of these wasteful practices, businesses and communities could help divert potable resources where they might have a more positive impact. With that in mind, here are 10 common practices making the water picture worse (in no particular order), along with some ideas for addressing them. 

Bert Guevara's insight:

We have to get serious on clean water management. The 10 cases enumerated in this article shows that much has to be done by both business and the consumers.

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The Water Food Energy Nexus - an animation - YouTube

Water, food and energy are interconnected: agriculture accounts for about 70% of global freshwater use and can pollute freshwater supplies if mismanaged. Wat...

The theme of this year's World Water Day is Water and Energy, because those two issues are not only closely interlinked, but also interdependent, and addressing them both is the only way forward. To learn more about the relationship between those seemingly disparate issues, watch and share this Water & Energy video playlist:

Bert Guevara's insight:

The theme of this year's World Water Day is Water and Energy, because those two issues are not only closely interlinked, but also interdependent, and addressing them both is the only way forward. To learn more about the relationship between those seemingly disparate issues, watch and share this Water & Energy video playlist:

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Vast Underwater Survey Identifies Five Keys to Conserving Ocean Life ("blindness will hurt future")

Vast Underwater Survey Identifies Five Keys to Conserving Ocean Life ("blindness will hurt future") | Water Stewardship | Scoop.it
Dozens of volunteer divers surveyed marine protected areas worldwide, to discover why life flourishes in some while failing in others.

Oceans cover 70 percent of the Earth. Somewhat less than 2 percent of that area has been set aside in marine protected areas: refuges where sea life is supposed to be able to thrive free of human pressures. But the reality is that many of them are “paper parks,” with no enforcement of fishing bans. Others are beset with polluted runoff from populated areas, or too small to protect wide-ranging fish species.

A newly published, 6-year global survey of 1,000 sites in 87 marine protected areas across 40 countries has found that at least 4 of 5 key factors must be present for a marine reserve to succeed:

No harvest (or "take") of fish and other sea lifeEnforcement to prevent illegal fishingIn existence for more than 10 yearsLarge enough to protect far-ranging speciesIsolated from unprotected marine areas by sand or deep water

The researchers shorthand these features as “NEOLI”: no take, enforced, old, large and isolated.

Bert Guevara's insight:

What we don't see will soon hurt us.

"The destruction of the undersea environment 'wouldn't be tolerated, if people could see and know the scale of what's happening.'"

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Current events: Antarctic climate change is messing with the motion of the ocean ("ice melt result")

Current events: Antarctic climate change is messing with the motion of the ocean ("ice melt result") | Water Stewardship | Scoop.it
The ocean's coldest, saltiest waters are disappearing -- thanks to Antarctic currents shutting down.

Researchers have been scratching their heads at the disappearance of the coldest, saltiest seawater over last couple of decades. Historically, this “Antarctic Bottom Water” originates in the Weddell and Ross Seas when it cools in polynya — areas of open water in which sea ice does not form — and then sinks down into the deep. After, it roams the Earth on a sort of “ocean conveyor belt,” taking almost 1,000 years to return from where it came, distributing yummy nutrients (at least I imagine they taste good if you’re plankton) and helping to keep the Earth’s climate in check along the way. But scientific sleuths think they’ve now solved the mystery of the vanishing waters: Climate change is causing more precipitation over the southern ocean, shutting down the normal mixing process.

Why? Because of density. Normally, the Weddell Sea’s surface waters are denser (because they’re colder, thanks to cooling off in the polynya) than what’s below, causing them to sink down and form Antarctic Bottom Water. But now, the increased renewal of super-fresh stuff keeps the Weddell Sea’s surface water density low, so it just stays on top instead of replenishing the Antarctic Bottom Water stores below. “I like to say it’s like a bottle of Italian salad dressing — so it separates between the dense stuff underneath and the less dense stuff on top,” says Eric Galbraith, assistant professor of Earth System Dynamics at McGill and coauthor of the new paper.

Bert Guevara's insight:

With so much fresh water from melted polar ice seeping into the ocean, something's gotta give.

This time, melted fresh water is overwhelming ocean salt water, so much so that the interaction of cold and warm ocean currents is being affected. Read more.

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River barrier erected to protect endangered fish - fox13now.com ("solving a human intrusion")

River barrier erected to protect endangered fish - fox13now.com ("solving a human intrusion") | Water Stewardship | Scoop.it
River barrier erected to protect endangered fish
fox13now.com
WASHINGTON COUNTY – A new and improved seven-foot wall spans the Virgin River along the Utah and Arizona border.

The concrete barrier is designed to keep invasive fish out of the Utah section of the Virgin River, specifically the red shiner. The red shiner was introduced into the area by fisherman several decades ago and is a threat to the endangered woundfin minnow. The Washington County Water Conservancy District spent close to $400,000 to improve the structure.

“The goal is to save the woundfin minnow going downstream, all the way through its habitat in the Virgin River,” WCWCD Associate General Manager Barbara Hjelle said. “In order to do that, we have to stop that upstream migration of the red shiner.”

Major efforts over the past 10 years have completely eliminated the red shiner, at least from the Utah section of the river. Meisner saidd barriers like this will go far in keeping that fish out and protecting the fragile ecosystem that exists along the Virgin River.

“This whole area in Washington County is kind of the convergence of different geographical regions,” Meisner said. You’ve got The Great Basin, The Colorado Plateau, The Mojave Desert. All are very close to Washington County.

The wall is actually an upgrade to one that’s spanned the river since the 1980s. The upgrades are meant to improve the function, while also keeping the minnow in from being washed downstream.

Bert Guevara's insight:

When man introduces non-native fish into the water, the indigenous fish species are threatened. This is also happening in many parts of the Philippines, especially in lakes crowded with fish pens. These fish pens breed commercial species which disregard biodiversity considerations.

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Bert Guevara's curator insight, March 9, 2014 10:46 PM

When man introduces non-native fish into the water, the indigenous fish species are threatened. This is also happening in many parts of the Philippines, especially in lakes crowded with fish pens. These fish pens breed commercial species which disregard biodiversity considerations.

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Drought forces Malaysia to expand water rationing ("water supply down to 50% & summer is yet to come")

Drought forces Malaysia to expand water rationing ("water supply down to 50% & summer is yet to come") | Water Stewardship | Scoop.it
Malaysia will expand water rationing in and around its capital Kuala Lumpur, as a drought continues to affect millions.

The National water commission said over 300,000 households in Kuala Lumpur and nearby Selangor, will experience cuts for the whole of March, after a two-month dry spell depleted reservoirs.

According to the commission, another 50,000 premises in the southern state of Johor have also undergone rationing last week, as much of Malaysia suffers under bone-dry conditions and high temperatures.

"The hot weather and lack of rain in catchment areas have caused all reservoirs in Selangor to recede," said the commission's chairman Ismail Kasim.

Malaysia tends to experience dry weather early in the year, but the current spell has been unusually long, sparking bushfires and protests from communities whose taps have run dry.

The Malaysian Meteorological Department has warned the dry patch could last another month.

The Malaysian economy remains reliant on agriculture - it is the world's second-largest producer of palm oil and a major exporter of rubber.


Bert Guevara's insight:

Cases of drought sweeping the U.S. and Asia at the start of 2014. This is not good for the Philippines which anticipates an El Niño season this year. What have we done to prepare?

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Large fish have disappeared from vast tracts of Australian coast, survey shows ("undersea casualties")

Large fish have disappeared from vast tracts of Australian coast, survey shows ("undersea casualties") | Water Stewardship | Scoop.it
Climate change looms as greatest of threats, which also include fishing and pollution, says survey co-founder

"We found very large areas of dead coral around the Montebello Islands, off northwest WA, which is a protected area," he said. "Previously, this area was very rich in coral but it looks like it has been impacted by heatwaves in that area.
"In the Coral sea, the fish life was good but the condition of the reefs themselves surprised me. I expected to see a lot more coral than there was, possibly because of the number of cyclones that have passed through there."

"Over the next 50 to 100 years, climate change is the grand-daddy threat, no doubt," Edgar said. "The east and west coasts of Australia have both seen an increase of water temperature, of around 1.5C in the last 50 years.
"What's happening in the sea is out of sight but there are massive changes happening under the surface. There isn't much information on the biology down there, which is why it's invaluable to have this baseline data to measure against. There are massive changes taking place to the biology of the inshore system but no-one notices."

Bert Guevara's insight:

The bigger fish species are the first casualties of a damaged ocean. It is happening everywhere, not only in Australia. That includes the Philippines.

"Vast tracts of Australia's coastline have been denuded of large fish, withmarine life under pressure from climate change, over-fishing, pollution and invasive species, a year-long study has found."

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10 marine species on the brink of mass extinction due to ocean acidification

10 marine species on the brink of mass extinction due to ocean acidification | Water Stewardship | Scoop.it
Perhaps nowhere else is the immediacy of carbon emissions apparent than in the world's oceans. Just a minor change in the ocean's PH balance means mass death for these species.


The ocean is a delicate place, and tiny changes to its composition can cause serious devastation.
Adding carbon to the atmosphere contributes to global warming and climate change. Another less-discussed impact is ocean acidification—whereby carbon molecules diffuse into the ocean from the atmosphere, causing a steady rise in acidity—even though the impacts are already being felt by many species.
The beautiful blue sea slug, seen here, is one such creature. Blue sea slugs feed on the poisonous Portuguese man of war jellyfish, meaning that an ocean without them would be an ocean with a lot more stinging jellyfish.


Via Kathy Dowsett
Bert Guevara's insight:

Once made extinct, they disappear forever. We haven't even fully discovered why they exist, yet human activity causes ocean acidification  which causes extinction of sensitive marine life. 

Life goes on for land creatures but our sea neighbors are struggling to escape extinction. 

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Don’t freak out, but you may be drinking recycled toilet water

Don’t freak out, but you may be drinking recycled toilet water | Water Stewardship | Scoop.it
People everywhere from D.C. to El Paso to Orange County have toilet water recycled into drinking water. Chill out already!

Back in 2009, Reuters reported that Disneyland drinking fountains were circulating “a small quantity of water that once flowed through a sewer.” In fact, more than 2 million Orange County residents drink purified wastewater, due to this drought thing you may have heard about. Same for El Paso. One Washington, D.C., suburb gets about 5 percent of its drinking water from recycled sewage and has been using the process since the ’70s.

Plus, the water is, you know, CLEANED between your toilet and your mouth. (Don’t make us break out the “pee is super-sterile” line.) According to NPR, it’s chlorinated, filtered, and subjected to reverse osmosis. Everything from viruses to pharmaceuticals and chemicals are filtered out. One resident of the O.C. even did a taste test comparing bottled water to former toilet water, and he couldn’t tell them apart — something cats have been telling us for years.

Considering that the global population is booming, climate change means increasing drought, and some people don’t have access to clean drinking water at ALL, this really ain’t so bad. If 5 million Singapore residents can get used to it, so can we!


Bert Guevara's insight:

It's El Niño time again; Angat Dam is drying up. Metro Manila should have a Plan B for water supply -- using recycled water should be discussed seriously as an option.

"Considering that the global population is booming, climate change means increasing drought, and some people don’t have access to clean drinking water at ALL, this really ain’t so bad. If 5 million Singapore residents can get used to it, so can we!"

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A Blueprint for Protecting the World's Oceans ("time to take a closer look; are we doing enough?")

A Blueprint for Protecting the World's Oceans ("time to take a closer look; are we doing enough?") | Water Stewardship | Scoop.it

One percent of the global ocean is closed to fishing. Is that a good thing?

Only 2 percent of the ocean is currently covered by some sort of MPA. (In contrast, 12 percent of the world's land is protected in national-park systems and wildlife preserves.) And only half of that 2 percent—a mere 1 percent of the ocean—is classified as "no-take," or completely closed to fishing and other extractive activity.

The international conservation community has long heralded the role of MPAs in protecting ocean resources. But amid growing concern over how to save the seas from overfishing, acidification, and "dead zones," ecologists and economists are beginning to ask a fundamental question: Are these special conservation zones actually achieving anything?

Such queries are especially important in light of news that Palau, a small island nation in Micronesia, intends to turn its entire territory into one giant marine reserve. Commercial fishing would be banned from Palau's coasts to the outer reaches of its Exclusive Economic Zone—in sum, an area of about 230,000 square miles. Palau, it seems, has decided that attracting more tourists and scuba divers is worth shunning the commercial fishing industry.

Bert Guevara's insight:

In February an article in Nature identified five factors as "essential" to the success of any MPA, with "success" measured by the biomass of all fish and the diversity of species in an area.

1. No-take: 

2. Enforced: 

3. Old: 

4. Large: 

5. Isolated: 

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60% of China underground water polluted: report - Phys.org ("this may be irreversible")

60% of China underground water polluted: report - Phys.org ("this may be irreversible") | Water Stewardship | Scoop.it
Sixty percent of underground water in China which is officially monitored is too polluted to drink directly, state media have reported, underlining the country's grave environmental problems.

Water quality measured in 203 cities across the country last year rated "very poor" or "relatively poor" in an annual survey released by the Ministry of Land and Resources, the official Xinhua news agency said late Tuesday.

Water rated "relatively" poor quality cannot be used for drinking without prior treatment, while water of "very" poor quality cannot be used as a source of drinking water, the report said.

The proportion of water not suitable for direct drinking rose from 57.4 percent from 2012, it said.

China's decades-long economic boom has brought rising environmental problems, with large parts of the country repeatedly blanketed in thick smog and both waterways and land polluted.

Pollution has emerged as a driver of discontent with the government, sparking occasional protests.

China's environment ministry last week estimated that 16 percent of the country's land area was polluted, with nearly one fifth of farmland tainted by inorganic elements such as cadmium.

Premier Li Keqiang announced in March that Beijing was "declaring war" on pollution as he sought to address public concerns, but experts warn that vested interests will make it difficult to take action.

Bert Guevara's insight:

If your underground water supply is polluted, where else can you go? Even China's rainwater becomes contaminated because of the air and land pollution; surface waterways are severely polluted too. 

I wonder how modern technology can clean underground water, if it is at all possible.

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Some corals adjusting to rising ocean temperatures, Stanford researchers say - Stanford University News

Some corals adjusting to rising ocean temperatures, Stanford researchers say - Stanford University News | Water Stewardship | Scoop.it
Stanford University News
Some corals adjusting to rising ocean temperatures, Stanford researchers say
Stanford University News
Some corals adjusting to rising ocean temperatures, Stanford researchers say.

To most people, 86-degree Fahrenheit water is pleasant for bathing and swimming. To most sea creatures, however, it's deadly. As climate change heats up ocean temperatures, the future of species such as coral, which provides sustenance and livelihoods to a billion people, is threatened.

Through an innovative experiment, Stanford researchers led by biology Professor Steve Palumbi have shown that some corals can – on the fly – adjust their internal functions to tolerate hot water 50 times faster than they would adapt through evolutionary change alone. The findings, published April 24 in Science, open a new realm of possibility for understanding and conserving corals.

"The temperature of coral reefs is variable, so it stands to reason that corals should have some capacity to respond to different heat levels," said Palumbi, director of Stanford's Hopkins Marine Station and a senior fellow at the Stanford Woods Institute for the Environment. "Our study shows they can, and it may help them in the future as the ocean warms."

Bert Guevara's insight:

This is a welcome development as most people are worried that coral bleaching may continue unabated.

Still, this doesn't mean that ocean warming can be tolerated by the rest of sealife. Dire consequences are still expected from continued ocean warming and acidification.

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Water Scarcity Drives U.S. Communities Toward Smarter Use, Recycling ("how much is it when its gone?")

Water Scarcity Drives U.S. Communities Toward Smarter Use, Recycling ("how much is it when its gone?") | Water Stewardship | Scoop.it
Bloomberg BNA — Virtually all of the water flushed down toilets and sent down drains in U.S. homes and businesses goes to wastewater treatment plants where it is cleaned up and then discharged into rivers, lakes, streams and oceans.

A conservation push spurred in part by drought, and expectations of greater shortages in the future, could change that. Soon, consumers could be irrigating their lawns or washing their cars with water that has come directly from a wastewater treatment plant.

Some might even be drinking it, experts tell Bloomberg BNA.

“We need to view stormwater as tomorrow's drinking water—or wastewater as tomorrow's drinking water,” said Benjamin Grumbles, president of U.S. Water Alliance, which promotes the concept of “one water” rather than the traditional approach of treating and regulating wastewater and drinking water separately.

In many areas, especially in the arid Southwest, reclaimed water is already being used to water golf courses or to fill fountains. But with predictions of increasingly dry periods, a result of climate change, and a growing demand for water, the use of reclaimed wastewater in more applications is expected to grow.

Bert Guevara's insight:

Water reuse level raised by drought.

“Expanding water reuse—the use of treated wastewater for beneficial purposes including irrigation, industrial uses, and drinking water augmentation—could significantly increase the nation's total available water resources,”

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5 solutions to the world's energy, food and water troubles ("get out of the box & think as a whole")

5 solutions to the world's energy, food and water troubles ("get out of the box & think as a whole") | Water Stewardship | Scoop.it
On World Water Day, breathtaking challenges for sustaining the future come into focus. The good news? Real solutions exist.

Real solutions to real problems

A holistic outlook that integrates behavior, technology, and conservation is what’s needed to help set the world on a sustainable path. Greater efficiencies through an integrated approach to our energy and water constraints mean that we are protecting our resources and help to establish financial stability in these sectors.

So, while the energy-water nexus seems daunting, there are solutions to help mitigate or solve these challenges:

1. Joint planning

With cooperation, energy and water sectors successfully can reduce the reliance on thirsty fossil-fuel electricity and bolster the supply of water. Better understanding of each other’s sectors will enhance coordination and better investment in long-term solutions to preserve our resources.

2. Public education

Education about the energy-water nexus (saving water saves energy and vice versa) is needed, and people need to know that their individual choices do play an important role in solving this issue — choices in which foods they buy, which cars they drive, and more.

3. Low-water energy resources

Support the development of solar and wind energy, which consume little to no water and generate negligible carbon emissions.

4. Preservation

Recognize that our planet’s diverse ecosystems are part of the equation. Thoughtful management of the trade-offs between the needs of the energy and water sectors, and the plants and animals we share this planet with, is critical if we are going to ensure that short-term gains for economic development do not undermine the ecosystem that’s so important for future resilience and sustainability.

5. Fair value pricing

Appropriately price energy and water resources to both provide sufficient revenues for industry players and promote conservation and efficiency through price signals.

Bert Guevara's insight:

The UN is interested in the energy-water nexus for the same reason that the World Bank is interested in it: the inequality of access to basic services, such as safe-drinking water and electricity, is unacceptable and indicative of extreme poverty across the globe. By coordinating policies and programs between the two sectors, energy and water can innovate together and improve people’s lives across the globe. Through this attention, it is hoped that these two sectors will enhance energy security and sustainable water use.

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It's World Water Day: 5 shocking facts about water scarcity that will make you cry a river

It's World Water Day: 5 shocking facts about water scarcity that will make you cry a river | Water Stewardship | Scoop.it
If you're reading this, you probably have clean water that runs out of your tap with the twist of a handle. But for almost 800 million people, it's not nearly so simple, and water scarcity is a very real, and very deadly, reality for them.

To help raise awareness of these very real water issues on World Water Day 2014 (March 22nd), here are five shocking facts about water scarcity.

1. Almost 800 million people lack access to clean safe water every day.

2. Almost 3 ½ million people die every year because of water and sanitation and hygiene-related causes, and almost all of them (99%) are in the developing world. 

3. Every 21 seconds, another child dies from a water-related illness. Diarrhea, something we don't really consider to be dangerous in the developed world, is actually incredibly deadly, and is the second leading global cause of death for kids under five.

4. More than 1 billion people still practice open defecation every day. In fact, more people have a mobile phone than a toilet.

5. The average American, taking a 5 minute shower, uses more water than an average person in the slums of a developing country does in a whole day. 

Bert Guevara's insight:

"Water poverty and its related issues affect the health, wealth, education, and wellbeing of all of those who live with it every day, so supporting clean water initiatives can make a big difference for many of our fellow Earthlings."

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Number of days without rain to dramatically increase in some world regions ("where's the water going?")

Number of days without rain to dramatically increase in some world regions ("where's the water going?") | Water Stewardship | Scoop.it
By the end of the 21st century, some parts of the world can expect as many as 30 more days a year without precipitation, according to a new study. Ongoing climate change caused by human influences will alter the nature of how rain and snow falls; areas that are prone to dry conditions will receive their precipitation in narrower windows of time. Computer model projections of future conditions indicate that regions such as the Amazon, Central America, Indonesia, and all Mediterranean climate regions around the world will likely see the greatest increase in the number of "dry days" per year, going without rain for as many as 30 days more every year. California, with its Mediterranean climate, is likely to have five to ten more dry days per year.

"Changes in intensity of precipitation events and duration of intervals between those events will have direct effects on vegetation and soil moisture," said Stephen Jackson, director of the U.S. Department of the Interior Southwest Climate Science Center, which co-funded the study. "(Study lead author Suraj) Polade and colleagues provide analyses that will be of considerable value to natural resource managers in climate adaptation and planning. Their study represents an important milestone in improving ecological and hydrological forecasting under climate change."

Polade, a postdoctoral researcher at Scripps, said that one of the implications of this finding is that annual rainfall could become less reliable in drying regions as annual averages will be calculated over a smaller number of days. The 28 models used by the team showed agreement in many parts of the world on the change in the number of dry days those regions will receive. They were in less agreement about how intense rain or snow will be when it does fall, although there is general consensus among models that the most extreme precipitation will become more frequent. Climate models agreed even less on how the conflicting daily changes affect annual mean rainfall.

Bert Guevara's insight:

Because of changing climate patterns, distribution of rainfall is affected. Some dry regions will become dryer. Other rainy regions will get drenched with more rain.

In the Philippines, we expect the same to happen. Typhoons accompanied by flooding in one extreme; long dry spells at the other end. 2014 is an example of this extreme weather pattern, according to predictions.

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It Takes A Village To Reverse Global Warming ("geo-engineering anyone? most good ideas begin as weird")

One man enlists the help of a village to try to reverse the climate of the entire planet. Is this a good thing? Playlists are working differ...

 

Bert Guevara's insight:

There are many "unverified" geo-engineering ideas, proposals and concepts floating around which may help in climate change mitigation. Some are good; some are hoaxes.

We just need to filter the good from the worthless. This is how all good ideas began.

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Bert Guevara's curator insight, March 9, 2014 11:24 PM

There are many "unverified" geo-engineering ideas, proposals and concepts floating around which may help in climate change mitigation. Some are good; some are hoaxes.

We just need to filter the good from the worthless. This is how all good ideas began.

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Scientists discover 95% of all fish in the ocean haven't been touched by fishermen - Geek ("gotcha!!!")

Scientists discover 95% of all fish in the ocean haven't been touched by fishermen - Geek ("gotcha!!!") | Water Stewardship | Scoop.it
Daily Mail
Scientists discover 95% of all fish in the ocean haven't been touched by fishermen
Geek
Fish species that call the mesopelagic zone home usually come closer to the surface at night to feed.

Fish species that call the mesopelagic zone home usually come closer to the surface at night to feed. By diving back down at dawn, they avoid predators like birds (and people). Living at these depths has resulted in the evolution of larger eyes and more sensitivity to changes in pressure. As a result, these creatures are quite adept at dodging nets. They can spot them as far out as five meters — long enough to avoid even the widest nets.

The team making these new counts of fish populations used sonar-based tools as a stand-in for traditional nets. They found 10-30 times more fish in the mesopelagic zone than expected. If these numbers hold up to scrutiny, that would mean 95% of the world’s fish biomass lives in the mesopelagic zone where they have been virtually untouched by fishermen. That would mean the oceans are much healthier than previously thought. We might even have a path toward sustainable fishing if our estimates of fish populations were off by that much.

Bert Guevara's insight:

So that is where all the fishes have gone!!!

"If these numbers hold up to scrutiny, that would mean 95% of the world’s fish biomass lives in the mesopelagic zone where they have been virtually untouched by fishermen. That would mean the oceans are much healthier than previously thought. We might even have a path toward sustainable fishing if our estimates of fish populations were off by that much."

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Big Antarctic glacier to keep raising seas, even without warming ("but there is warming & melting")

Big Antarctic glacier to keep raising seas, even without warming ("but there is warming & melting") | Water Stewardship | Scoop.it
* Pine Island glacier shrank 8,000 years ago, lasted decades* New melt similar, will add to sea level rise-Science studyBy Alister Doyle, Environment CorrespondentOSLO, Feb 20 (Reuters) - A thawing

A thawing Antarctic glacier that is the biggest contributor to rising sea levels is likely to continue shrinking for decades, even without an extra spur from global warming, a study showed on Thursday.

Scientists said the Pine Island Glacier, which carries more water to the sea than the Rhine River, also thinned 8,000 years ago at rates comparable to the present, in a melt that lasted for decades, perhaps for centuries.

A creeping rise in sea levels is a threat to low-lying coasts from Bangladesh to Florida, and to cities from London to Shanghai. Of the world's biggest glaciers, in Antarctica and Greenland, Pine Island is the largest contributor.

The trigger of the ancient thinning, of about a metre (3 ft) a year, was probably a natural climate shift that warmed the sea and melted the floating end of the glacier, removing a buttress that let ice on land slide more quickly into the sea.

Bert Guevara's insight:

Bad news for coastal areas. With or without warming, sea level rise continues.

"The amount of ice being lost from Pine Island glacier is equivalent to every person on our planet pouring 10 pints (5.7 litres) of water into the ocean every day," Professor Andrew Shepherd, an expert at the University of Leeds who was not involved in the study, told Reuters. "That's the last thing our flood defences need right now."

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How business can take action on the California water crisis ("the ugly side of CC - drought!")

How business can take action on the California water crisis ("the ugly side of CC - drought!") | Water Stewardship | Scoop.it
The Golden State has developed an action plan to address water scarcity. Here’s how businesses can help.

The state's drought is exposing the importance of water in agriculture, energy production, manufacturing, residential use, ecosystems and more. It is also beginning to highlight what needs to change with regards to how we value water and the importance of water stewardship.

A recent Reuters article summarizes the extent of the drought and the particular impact to the agricultural sector in California —  the nation's No.1 agricultural producer, responsible for half of the nation's fruits and vegetables. Some 500,000 acres of cropland are expected to be left idle in 2014 due to reductions in available water. The impact could be in the billions of dollars to the state economy.

To help address the problem, the Golden State released the California Water Action Plan (PDF) in January. As California's official vision, it recommends how to address water scarcity, with goals for management over the next five years. On a broad level, the plan describes the following 10 major goals:

1. Make conservation a California way of life.

2. Increase regional self-reliance and integrated water management across all levels of government.

3. Achieve the Delta Reform Act's "co-equal goals" of reliable water supply and improved environmental quality for the Delta.

4. Protect and restore important ecosystems.

5. Manage and prepare for dry periods.

6. Expand water storage capacity and improve groundwater management.

7. Provide safe water for all communities.

8. Increase flood protection.

9. Increase operational and regulatory efficiency.

10. Identify sustainable and integrated financing opportunities.

Bert Guevara's insight:

California drought is included in the many climate change impacts in many climate studies. It is high time to rewrite the manuals and textbooks on agriculture because drought is the "new normal" in these regions.

Here are some of the suggestions which the Philippines can learn from. El Niño for the Pacific region is not far away.

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