Conservation

Senators take differing routes on wildfire policy

Source: 
The Desert Sun

Lawmakers agree that wildfire funding policy needs to be changed, but are split on how to fix it: A bipartisan group is proposing that money to fight wildfires be allowed to come from disaster funds, while a Republican Senate trio has proposed a measure that would require spending to thin forests on federal lands, Gannett's The Desert Sun reports.

California approves fines for water-wasters

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — California water regulators voted Tuesday to approve fines up to $500 a day for residents who waste water on lawns, landscaping and car washing, as a report showed that consumption throughout the state has actually risen amid the worst drought in nearly four decades.

The action by the State Water Resources Control Board came after its own survey showed that conservation measures to date have failed to achieve the 20 percent reduction in water use sought by Gov. Jerry Brown.

Drought expected to take heavy toll on California agriculture

Source: 
The Wall Street Journal

The University of California, Davis's Center for Watershed Sciences projected California's drought will inflict a total $2.2 billion in losses and expenses for the state's agriculture industry and cut more than 17,000 farm jobs, The Wall Street Journal reports.

California water use rises amid crippling drought

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — Californians increased water consumption this year during the severe drought, despite pleas from the governor to conserve, fallowed farm fields and reservoirs that are quickly draining, according to a report released Tuesday.

The new figures surfaced as state water regulators prepared to vote later in the day on fines up to $500 a day for people who waste water on landscaping, fountains, washing vehicles and other outdoor uses.

Concerns about Calif. bottling plant during drought

Source: 
The Desert Sun

As California continues to experience severe drought, some residents in Cabazon are questioning why there are few restrictions on a Nestle-owned bottled-water plant, even as the rest of the state is facing pressure to conserve resources, The Desert News reports.

Proposal would fine California water-wasters

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — In one of the most drastic responses yet to California's drought, state regulators on Tuesday will consider fines up to $500 a day for people who waste water on landscaping, fountains, washing vehicles and other outdoor uses.

The rules would prohibit the watering of landscaping to the point that runoff spills onto sidewalks or streets. Hosing down sidewalks, driveways and other hard surfaces would be banned along with washing vehicles without a shut-off nozzle.

Equity group turns marsh restoration into profit

Source: 
The New York Times

Ecosystem Investment Partners, a private equity group, is looking to profit from its restoration of marshlands in Louisiana by selling the environmental restoration credits it earns to developers and agencies looking to offset their projects' environmental damage, The New York Times reports.

California hopes fines up to $500 slow water waste

GLENDALE, Calif. (AP) — Bo Cuketieh inadvertently let a fine mist from a leaky hose soak the front lawn of a Southern California home Wednesday before considering that such water waste could merit a $500 fine under unprecedented restrictions proposed by California regulators.

Cuketieh, a 35-year-old welder living at the Glendale home, said conservation is necessary, but he chafed at the maximum fine.

"That's the difference between me making my house payment or not," said Cuketieh, who was shirtless and hunched over in the 98 degree heat as he filled his car radiator. "I live from one week to the next, and I have a pretty decent job."

Texas city using treated wastewater for drinking

FORT WORTH, Texas (AP) — As much of Texas grapples with lingering drought, a second city in the Lone Star State has begun reusing treated wastewater in a state-approved recycling process to bolster drinking supplies.

Wichita Falls, near the Oklahoma border, on Wednesday began reusing millions of gallons of water at the River Road Waste Treatment plant that's been purified to meet government drinking standards. The water is then sent by a 12-mile pipeline to the Cypress Water Treatment Plant for additional purification.

The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality approved Wichita Falls' proposal for a toilet-to-tap reuse program for up to six months.

Interior secretary pledges $43M for conservation

FORT WORTH, Texas (AP) — U.S. Interior Secretary Sally Jewell has announced that more than $43 million will be distributed from a federal fund for recreation and conservation projects nationwide.

Jewell joined Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price and other officials Tuesday at the Texas city's Gateway Park to announce the distribution from the Land and Water Conservation Fund.

Offshore oil and gas royalties support the fund, which is scheduled to expire next year unless reauthorized by Congress.

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