Shallow Waters

Shallow Waters

In a warmer world, the fight for water can push nations apart — or bring them together

The Rio Grande Valley of Texas is one of the fastest-growing places in the United States. Already hot and arid, and growing hotter, the booming, heavily Latino region depends almost entirely on the shriveling Rio Grande for water. Considered one of the most endangered rivers in North America, the Rio Grande provides drinking … [more…]

Pittsburgh water agency to spend $50M to replace lead pipes

photo: Pittsburgh water agency

The Pittsburgh Water and Sewer Authority’s water treatment plant in Aspinwall. (Photo by Ryan Loew/PublicSource)

Pittsburgh’s beleaguered water authority will spend $50 million to replace lead service lines, give filters to low-income residents and take other steps to address the city’s lead crisis under a settlement approved Thursday by state utility regulators. It comes a week after the Pennsylvania attorney general’s office filed criminal charges against the Pittsburgh Water and … [more…]

Green water-purification system works without heavy metals or corrosive chemicals

Green water-purification system works without heavy metals or corrosive chemicals

This photo shows a concentrator where samples were placed. Credit: Dan Wang

Scientists at the Institute of Process Engineering (IPE) at the Chinese Academy of Sciences in Beijing and Yangzhou University (YZU) in Jiangsu have developed an effective and energy-efficient technique for purifying water by using graphitic carbon nitride sheets.

Their prototype, presented February 7 in the journal Chem, purified pathogen-rich water in 30 min, killing over 99.9999% of … [more…]

Gonzaga study reveals high levels of microplastics in Spokane River, suggests particles in drinking water as well

The tenuous plastic fibers, visible only through the magnified view of a microscope, sent Jacob Peterson reeling into eddies of anxiety.

The sudden upwelling of fear wasn’t completely new. The biology student suffered from anxiety in other areas of his life. But this was the first time his own research triggered the feeling.

“Realizing how much microplastic was in tap water and our drinking water really freaked me out,” he … [more…]

Firefighting foam linked to water contamination across Massachusetts

photo: Firefighting foam linked to PFAS water contamination

State environmental officials are tracking an emerging threat to drinking water across Massachusetts linked to a firefighting foam used at military installations and airports.

“Back in 2012, 2013 we started showing these contaminates” said Dan Santos, director of the Barnstable Department of Public Works.

Testing revealed toxic levels of chemicals in the soil at the county fire and rescue training academy, only a few hundred yards from the town’s watershed. … [more…]