California hit hard as Trump weakens clean water protections

California will be hit hard as Trump administration weakens clean water protections

Photo: Under the new rule, the Clean Water Act’s protections would no longer apply to most small streams and wetlands, including those that are considered vital parts of drinking-water systems and fisheries. Above is Owens Valley. (Brian van der Brug / Los Angeles Times)

Defying environmentalists and public health advocates, the Trump administration on Thursday will announce the replacement of Obama-era water protections with a significantly weaker set of regulations … [more…]

Trump Eases Pollution Controls on Streams and Wetlands

Trump Eases Pollution Controls on Streams and Wetlands

Photo: Farmland abutting prairie potholes, a type of ephemeral wetland, in North Dakota.Jim Brandenburg/Minden Pictures

WASHINGTON — The Trump administration on Thursday will finalize a rule to strip away environmental protections for streams, wetlands and other water bodies, handing a victory to farmers, fossil fuel producers and real estate developers who said Obama-era rules had shackled them with onerous and unnecessary burdens.

From Day 1 of his administration, President … [more…]

Mathematician develops model to control spread of aquatic invasive species

Mathematician develops model to control spread of aquatic invasive species

Credit: University of Tennessee

Adjusting the water flow rate in a river can prevent invasive species from moving upstream and expanding their range. An applied mathematician at UT has developed a partial differential equation model to find the desired flow rate to reduce invasive populations.

The model is detailed in a new paper by Suzanne Lenhart, Chancellor’s Professor and James R. Cox Professor of Mathematics, published in Mathematics.

"Invasives

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All about the humble water shrew

Water shrew

Photo: Water shrew Erni Shutterstock

The water shrew is well adapted to an aquatic lifestyle: they have a dark brown (almost black), waterproof coat of short fur, and ears (visible as white tufts) that can close in the water. A fringe of stiff silvery hairs runs the length of the underside of the tail, which they use as a rudder, and their hind feet have similar fringes. They can dive … [more…]

Dirtiest week for water in EPA history

Photo: Dirtiest week for water in EPA history

Photo: © Getty Images

Before the Clean Water Act was passed in 1972, our nation’s waters were in trouble. Lake Erie was virtually dead, the Cuyahoga River caught on fire, and the Androscoggin River in Maine was so polluted it peeled paint on nearby buildings. Many of America’s waters had become little more than lifeless, open sewers.

Nobody wants to return to the bad old days of polluted, dirty rivers. … [more…]