Don’t believe the label ‘flushable': disposable wipes clog sewers around the world

Read the full story in The Guardian.

Grownups are now using the same wipes once reserved for babies, leading to millions of dollars of sewer problems. A New York City bill takes aim at the lack of transparency – and mislabeling – some say is to blame

EPA issues final rules protecting drinking water, streams

Read the full story in the News-Gazette.

The Obama administration issued new rules Wednesday to protect the nation’s drinking water and clarify which smaller streams, tributaries and wetlands are covered by anti-pollution and development provisions of the Clean Water Act.

See also the news release from U.S. EPA.

Farmers try controlled drainage to keep water, nutrients in place

Read the full story in Corn & Soybean Digest.

Too much or too little water accounts for about 67% of the risk in growing corn and soybeans. That risk could be dramatically cut with controlled drainage. On flatter soils, water tables can be raised and lowered with structures inserted into tile lines. The structures double up on tile functions, backing water up in a field when the crop needs it, as well as draining it when there’s too much water. The practice can be applied to both existing tile systems and new tile systems – holding water in the profile during dry times and releasing it in wet springs and before harvest.

The Water-Energy Nexus — An Earth Science Perspective

Download the document.

Water availability and use are closely connected with energy development and use. Water cannot be delivered to homes, businesses, and industries without energy, and most forms of energy development require large amounts of water. The United States faces two significant and sometimes competing challenges: to provide sustainable supplies of freshwater for humans and ecosystems and to ensure adequate sources of energy for future generations. This report reviews the complex ways in which water and energy are interconnected and describes the earth science data collection and research that can help the Nation address these important challenges.

The earth sciences have been a cornerstone in developing our current understanding of the water-energy nexus. A full understanding of the nexus, however, is limited by uncertainty in our knowledge of fundamental issues, such as the quantity of freshwater that is available, the amount of water that is used in energy development, the effects that emerging energy development technologies have on water quality and quantity, and the amount of energy required to treat and deliver freshwater. Enhanced data collection and research can improve our understanding of these important issues and thereby lay the groundwork for informed resource management.

Relevant earth science issues analyzed and discussed herein include freshwater availability; water use; ecosystems health; assessment of saline water resources; assessment of fossil-fuel, uranium, and geothermal resources; subsurface injection of wastewater and carbon dioxide and related induced seismicity; climate change and its effect on water availability and energy production; byproducts and waste streams of energy development; emerging energy-development technologies; and energy for water treatment and delivery

Groups jockeying to shape EPA water rule

Read the full story in The Hill.

More than 100 advocates representing dozens of industry groups, companies and environmental organizations are flocking to the White House in a last-ditch effort to influence controversial regulations that would redefine the reach of the federal government’s water pollution enforcement.

The White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has in recent days disclosed 16 meetings about the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) proposal since early April, when the OMB started its final regulatory review of the plan.