Environment

California homeowners warned about brown lawns

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Some homeowners following the state's new drought-conscious motto that brown is the new green are being warned by local governments that they could be slapped with fines because of those dried up lawns.

In an attempt to get Californians to take the drought seriously, the state water board voted this week for mandatory outdoor watering restrictions that carry the threat of $500 fines.

Risk of earthquake increased for about half of US

WASHINGTON (AP) — A new federal earthquake map dials up the shaking hazard just a bit for about half of the United States and lowers it for nearly a quarter of the nation.

The U.S. Geological Survey updated Thursday its national seismic hazard maps for the first time since 2008, taking into account research from the devastating 2011 earthquake and tsunami off the Japanese coast and the surprise 2011 Virginia temblor.

Obama's second-in-command at EPA resigns

WASHINGTON (AP) — The No. 2 environmental official under President Barack Obama is resigning to head a nonprofit group dedicated to energy and climate change.

EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy on Thursday announced the resignation of Bob Perciasepe. He was appointed deputy administrator in 2009 as the Obama administration tapped the EPA to tackle pollution blamed for global warming.

NOAA

Warming trend continued in 2013: Annual State of the Climate Report

The world is continuing to get warmer faster according to the State of the Climate Report 2013, the annual look at global weather released Thursday by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

The report, compiled by 425 scientists in 57 countries, was published in the Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society.

Officials: Complacency drives hike in water use

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — Some Southern California water districts became so good at saving water and building their own water storage facilities in recent decades that residents are not feeling the effects of the worst drought to hit the state in a generation.

That's a problem.

Thinking plenty of water was available at the start of summer, residents along a coastal area doused their lawns and filled their pools, while elsewhere in the state farmers fallowed hundreds of thousands of acres.

California seeks to send message to water-wasters

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — Reservoirs are running dry, the Capitol's lawn has turned brown, and farmers have left hundreds of thousands of acres unplanted.

Even so, many Californians aren't taking the drought seriously. State water regulators are trying to change that by imposing fines up to $500 a day for wasting water.

NOAA to announce 2013 State of the Climate report findings

Washington D.C., July 17, 2014, 12:00 pm

Scientists will announce findings from a paper to be published in the Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society on the state of the world's weather in 2013. Participants in a conference call organized by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration include Thomas Karl, Director of NOAA's National Climatic Data Center and James Renwick, Associate Professor at Victoria University in Wellington, New Zealand.

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.

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