IAEA Develops New Method to Track Sources of Water Pollution

IAEA Develops New Method to Track Sources of Water Pollution

Photo: Excessive nitrate in lakes, seas and rivers can increase algae growth that can lead to toxic blue-green blooms. The IAEA, in collaboration with the University of Massachusetts, has developed an innovative method to trace the origin of nitrate pollution in water. (Photo: L. Wassenaar, IAEA)

The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), in collaboration with the University of Massachusetts, has developed an innovative method for tracing the origin of nitrogen … [more…]

Elevated Nitrate Levels Found in Millions of Americans’ Drinking Water

photo: residential drinking water sauce

Photo: Steve Johnson / Flickr

Public water systems serving more than 5.6 million Americans contain concentrations of nitrate at levels found to cause health problems, including cancer and birth defects, according to a new study published in the journal Environmental Health. Systems serving Hispanic populations tended to have the highest levels of nitrate in drinking water.

Nitrate in water originates from various sources, including fertilizers, sewage treatment systems, and … [more…]

Glacier depth affects plankton blooms off Greenland:

Study shows complex connection between meltwater discharge and nutrient input — ScienceDaily

Summary: The unusual timing of highly-productive summer plankton blooms off Greenland indicates a connection between increasing amounts of meltwater and nutrients in these coastal waters. Researchers now show that this connection exists, but is much more complex than widely supposed. Whether increasing meltwater has a positive or negative effect on summertime phytoplankton depends on the depth at which … [more…]

Algae from wastewater solves two problems: biofuel and cleanup

photo: algae ponds - source of biofuels and, now, wastewater treatment

In one of the first studies to examine the potential for using municipal wastewater as a feedstock for algae-based biofuels, Rice University scientists found they could easily grow high-value strains of oil-rich algae while simultaneously removing more than 90 percent of nitrates and more than 50 percent of phosphorus from wastewater.

The findings, which are based on a five-month study at a wastewater treatment facility in Houston, are available online … [more…]

Why a tax on drinking water is wrong

Why a tax on drinking water is wrong

A statewide tax on drinking water is being considered. (Getty Images)

The vast majority of Californians are fortunate enough to take access to clean drinking water for granted. However, the fact that some Californians in small, rural communities do not have this access is a travesty in this modern day and age. It can and must be fixed as an urgent state priority.

Resolving this unacceptable situation will come at … [more…]