Obama signs $12.3 billion water projects bill

WASHINGTON (AP) — Capping a rare instance of congressional compromise, President Barack Obama signed a $12.3 billion water projects bill Tuesday, financing improvements ranging from a harbor expansion in Boston to flood control in Iowa and North Dakota.

Obama praised the work of Democrats and Republicans and said he hoped it set a pattern for agreement for more spending on capital works projects across the country.

"Right now we should be putting a lot more Americans back to work rebuilding our infrastructure," he said. "There are a lot of guys with hardhats sitting at home."

Capitol Hill Ocean Week 2014 Day 3

Washington, June 12, 2014, 9:00 am

Capitol Hill Ocean Week 2014 concludes. Commerce Department Under Secretary of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere Kathryn D. Sullivan appears on afternoon panel. 

Jewell addresses Capitol Hill Ocean Week 2014 Day 2

Washington, June 11, 2014, 9:00 am

Interior Secretary Sally Jewell delivers 1:15 pm address to Capitol Hill Ocean Week conference. BOEM Acting Director Walter Cruickshank, BSEE Director Brian M. Salerno, Center for Offshore Safety Executive Director Charlie Williams speak on afternoon panel. Conference continues Thursday.

Podesta addresses Capitol Hill Ocean Week 2014 Day 1

Washington, June 10, 2014, 10:00 am

White House adviser John Podesta delivers morning keynote to Capitol Hill Ocean Week conference Day 1. State Department Under Secretary for Economic Growth, Energy, and the Environment Catherine Novelli to speak on afternoon panel. Conference continues through Thursday.

Scientists explore using trees to clean pollution

FREEPORT, Texas (AP) — Before Houston and its suburbs were built, a dense forest naturally purified the coastal air along a stretch of the Texas Gulf Coast that grew thick with pecan, ash, live oak and hackberry trees.

It was the kind of pristine woodland that was mostly wiped out by settlers in their rush to clear land and build communities. Now one of the nation's largest chemical companies and one of its oldest conservation groups have forged an unlikely partnership that seeks to recreate some of that forest to curb pollution.

The plan drafted by Dow Chemical and the Nature Conservancy is only in its infancy and faces many hurdles. But it envisions a day when expensive machines used to capture industrial pollutants might be at least partially replaced by restoring some of the groves of native trees that once filled the land.

Senate Energy subcommittee hearing on Klamath Basin act

Washington, June 3, 2014, 2:30 pm

Senate Energy and Natural Resources Water and Power Subcommittee hearing on S.2379, the Klamath Basin Water Recovery and Economic Restoration Act of 2014.

Senate Environment subcommittee hearing on climate and conservation

Washington, June 3, 2014, 10:00 am

Senate Environment and Public Works Green Jobs and the New Economy Subcommittee hearing, "Farming, Fishing, Forestry, and Hunting in an Era of Changing Climate." U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Director Dan Ashe among witnesses. 

Senate Energy and Natural Resources photo

Murkowski urges 'energy-water' research to address potential water shortages

Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, on Tuesday called for federal research to reduce the billions of gallons of water used in oil and gas drilling and in electricity generation, as droughts and population growth put new demands on water sources. 

Murkowski also backed new research to cut the energy devoted to transport and treatment of water supplies, according to a policy white paper she released and prepared remarks she was to deliver to the Atlantic Council on the so-called energy-water nexus.

Senate Environment field hearing on Conowingo Dam and Chesapeake Bay

Conowingo, Md., May 5, 2014, 4:15 pm

Senate Environment and Public Works Water and Wildlife Subcommittee hearing, "Finding Cooperative Solutions to Environmental Concerns with the Conowingo Dam to Improve the Health of the Chesapeake Bay." Army Corps of Engineers, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service representatives to testify. 

China says quality of its groundwater has worsened

BEIJING (AP) — Nearly 60 percent of the groundwater at sites monitored throughout China is of poor or extremely poor quality, with excessive amounts of pollutants, according to an annual report by the Ministry of Land and Resources.

Tests at 4,778 monitoring sites across China showed a slight increase in polluted sites over last year, from 57.4 percent to 59.6 percent, according to the report, released late Tuesday.

Beijing has been responding to public demands for transparency in environmental data. Last week, the government released a summary of a years-long survey that shows nearly one-fifth of the country's farmland is contaminated, most of it with toxic metals.


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