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18 July 2017

Water quality improvements increase home prices in Narragansett Bay

Improvements in water quality in Narragansett Bay have had a positive impact on property values in the surrounding areas and future improvements to water quality could continue to benefit nearby property, a new study finds.

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24 May 2017

LA lawns lose 70 billion gallons of water a year

In summer 2010, Los Angeles was losing about 100 gallons of water per person per day to the atmosphere through the evaporation and plant uptake of lawns and trees, new research finds. Lawns accounted for 70 percent of the water loss, while trees accounted for 30 percent, according to a new study.

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14 December 2016

Magnetic fields help target buried mine waste for removal

Butte, Montana made national headlines last month after thousands of snow geese died in the toxic and acidic waters of the Berkeley Pit. The large, deep pool is the former site of a massive copper mine and is just one remnant of Butte’s extensive mining history. Over the past century and a half, heavy metals and acid from numerous local mines have seeped into the groundwater, forcing the city of Butte to rely on reservoirs for drinking water.

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11 October 2016

Large precipitation events critical in replenishing groundwater resources

Large precipitation events that occur about every 10 years are a critical source of recharge for replenishing groundwater resources, according to a new study. Groundwater is a vital source of water in the western United States and will be increasingly important with continued population growth and climate variability. Understanding the role of these large recharge events in replenishing aquifers and sustaining water supplies is crucial for long-term groundwater management.

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30 August 2016

The demise of the Maya civilization: water shortage can destroy cultures

Something really drastic must have happened to the ancient Maya at the end of the Classic Period in the 9th Century. Within a short period of time, this advanced civilization in Central America went from flourishing to collapsing – the population dwindling rapidly and monumental stone structures, like the ones built at Yucatán, were no longer being constructed. The reason for this demise remains the subject of debate even today. Now, researchers at the Vienna University of Technology (TU Wien) may have found the explanation: the irrigation technology that served the Mayans well during periods of drought may have actually made their society more vulnerable to major catastrophes.

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2 June 2016

In desert suburb, homes in homeowners’ associations use less water, study finds

A new study finds that in a Phoenix suburb, homeowners’ associations are good for water conservation. According to the study, homes in HOAs in Goodyear, Arizona use up to 17,000 fewer liters of water (4490 gallons) in the peak month of July compared to their non-HOA counterparts, roughly the amount needed to fill eleven hot tubs.

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9 May 2016

More than half of streamflow in the Upper Colorado River Basin originates as groundwater

More than half of the streamflow in the Upper Colorado River Basin originates as groundwater, according to a new study published online today in Water Resources Research, a journal of the American Geophysical Union.

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1 September 2015

High water tables can be a boon to crop yields

High water tables can be a bane to crop yields, compelling many farmers to drain their fields so their crops don’t drown when it rains.

But a high water table may not always be a bad thing. A new study shows it is actually a boon for some fields and during certain times of the growing season, casting light on opportunities for improving yield efficiency to meet global food demands.

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8 October 2014

How rain falls – not just how much – may alter landslide risk

New research finds that it’s not just the amount of rain that falls on a hillside, but the pattern of rainfall that matters when trying to determine how likely a slope is to give way. This new information could improve forecasts of landslides, which are typically hard to predict, said the scientists conducting the research.
Different rainfall patterns—a short, heavy deluge, a light, steady downpour, or sporadic showers—will trigger different numbers of landslides with varying amounts of debris, according to the new study published today in Water Resources Research, a journal of the American Geophysical Union.

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26 August 2014

Heating up the fishbowl: Climate change threatens endangered Devils Hole pupfish

Climate change is hurting reproduction of the critically endangered Devils Hole pupfish, threatening the survival of the already small population, new research shows.

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