California’s water agencies lose millions of gallons underground due to leaky pipes

photo: California water agencies lose millions of gallons due to leaky pipes

Photo: Water continues to flow into a sinkhole from the broken water main on Sunset Boulevard near UCLA,Wednesday, July 30, 2014. (Michael Owen Baker / Staff Photographer)

As 20 million gallons of drinking water rushed down Sunset Boulevard and flooded the UCLA campus this summer, drought-conscious residents threw up their hands.

How are three-minute showers going to make a difference, they asked, when the city’s pipes are bursting?

Turns out … [more…]

News: New Study Demonstrates Water Conservation Pays Off for Ratepayers

SACRAMENTO—Are Los Angeles ratepayers better off by conserving water over the long term? That’s the question explored in a new study released by the California Water Efficiency Partnership (CalWEP) and Alliance for Water Efficiency in partnership with the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (LADWP).

“Many customers and water professionals are perplexed by rate increases when system-wide water use goes down, and blame water conservation and efficiency as the


The Colorado River is evaporating, climate change largely to blame

photo: the 'bathtub ring' shown how low the reservoir levels are. The Colorado River is evaporating, and climate change is largely to blame

Colorado River water held back by the Hoover Dam. IMAGE: SHUTTERSTOCK / ROCKET PHOTOS – HQ STOCK

An hour’s drive from Las Vegas stands America’s Hoover Dam, a commanding barrier of concrete holding back the trillions of gallons of Colorado River water held inside Lake Mead.

The dam is a proud place, built by thousands of hands and with 5 million barrels of concrete. Its golden elevator doors, Gotham-esque pillars, … [more…]

What’s Best for Kids: Bottled Water or Fountains?

photo: drinking fountains vs. bottled water in schools. What's Best for Kids: Bottled Water or Fountains?

Tap water may be better for kids than sugary sodas, but many schools have lead-contaminated water (file photo). This story is part of a special series that explores the global water crisis. For more clean water news, photos, and information, visit National Geographic’s Freshwater Web site.

As the U.S. taste for bottled water grows, environmentalists have been trying to sell people on good old-fashioned—and free—tap water. But tap water’s … [more…]

What’s Being Done to Revive L.A.’s Decimated Abalone Population

photo: abalone propagation. What’s Being Done to Revive L.A.’s Decimated Abalone Population

”Being slow and tasty is always a liability”

In the Bay Foundation’s two-year-old Abalone Research Laboratory on Terminal Island, abalone of varying sizes pass their days submerged in white tanks of saltwater. They look more like bewhiskered stones than snails, but when a palm-size one is removed from the water, the mollusk rises up on the muscular foot it uses to attach to surfaces and swivels defensively to the left … [more…]