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Uninvited visitors have wormed their way into Hawthorne's kitchens and bathrooms. A minor infestation of bloodworms--larvae of the gnat-like midge--is forcing the city to purge its municipal water system, which serves about half of Hawthorne's 12,000 households and businesses. The scarlet creatures, although unnerving to residents who have been finding them in their water glasses and bathtubs since last week, do not pose a health hazard, officials say.
April 15, 2014 | By Bettina Boxall
The state Department of Public Health is adopting the nation's first-ever drinking water standard for hexavalent chromium, a carcinogen found in water supplies across the state. The department announced Tuesday that it has submitted a final regulation setting a limit of 10 parts per billion in public drinking water supplies, a level that will require more than 100 water systems to treat for the contaminant. If approved as expected by the Office of Administrative Law, the standard would take effect July 1. Public health Director Ron Chapman said the limit "will protect public health while taking into consideration economic and technical feasibility as required by law. " Known as chromium 6, the toxic heavy metal makes its way into groundwater naturally from geological formations.
March 8, 1992
In light of the Point Loma sewage disaster, we should look to San Diego County Water Authority's Capital Improvement Program for inspiration and future water supply. Unlike the San Diego Clean Water program's proposal to build seven more sewage plants to generate reclaimed water, the CIP is expanding and rehabilitating existing infrastructure. The CIP plan will bring an additional 400 million gallons per day into San Diego (on top of 580 MGD now imported). This program involves a sixth pipeline; improving old, undependable pipelines; expansion and constructing more storage for emergency supply.
March 30, 2014
Re "The water revolution we need," Opinion, March 28 It's deceptive to say that agriculture uses 75% of "the water used in the state" without adding "for human use. " According to the California State Water Plan, urban use accounts for 11% and agriculture 41%; environmental use accounts for 48%. This is the developed water supply that can be managed and controlled. Agricultural water efficiency has never been greater. Farmers have invested billions of dollars in drip irrigation and other efficiency technologies and produce 85.4% more food and fiber per acre-foot of water than they did in 1967.
November 13, 2013 | By Kerry Cavanaugh
On Wednesday, the California Coastal Commission may green-light a massive desalination plant in Huntington Beach. If approved, it would be the second operation in the area. The nation's largest seawater-to-drinking-water facility is under construction in Carlsbad and is expected to begin delivering a potable product in 2016. Coastal Commission staff have recommended major changes to the proposed Huntington Beach plant to prevent marine life from being sucked up with the seawater.
September 22, 2013 | By Matt Hamilton
The residents of the foothill town of Lyons, hit hard by Colorado flooding, have another misery piled on their already destroyed and damaged homes, businesses and roads: the potentially deadly E. coli bacteria has been found in the town's water system. “We don't want you using any of the water,” Lyons' town administrator, Victoria Simonsen, said during a town hall meeting, which was broadcast online because the town is all but evacuated. There's no timeline for when the water and sewer systems will be restored, Simonsen said.
January 15, 2011 | By Andy Reid
Lake Okeechobee's declining water level once again threatens to generate water-supply ripple effects throughout south Florida, leaving less water for thirsty crops and lawns as well as an ecosystem trying to rebound from years of abuse. The big lake is south Florida's backup water supply, relied on to replenish drinking water for some communities and tapped for irrigation by sugar cane growers and other farmers. During droughts, the lake also is a barometer for water conditions across the region.
September 17, 2000
Re "County to Test Water for Chromium 6," Sept. 6. Despite the fact that the county Board of Supervisors moved to begin testing the levels of chromium 6 (a carcinogen) at county facilities and that the Legislature is waiting for Gov. [Gray] Davis to sign Senate Bill 2127, which would require the Department of Health Services to determine chromium 6 levels and assess its risk to public health, Mel Blevins, water master, saw fit to state his opinion that "the level of chromium 6 is not excessive."
February 27, 2009 | Patrick McGreevy
With California's budget crisis resolved for the moment, state lawmakers Thursday turned their attention to another emergency: a three-year drought that has left key reservoirs at 35% of capacity. Legislators stepped forward with plans to ask voters to borrow as much as $15 billion for projects to expand and improve the state's water supply. "This is the session to aggressively solve California's water challenges," Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg (D-Sacramento) said Thursday.
March 6, 2014 | By The Times editorial board
If you're going to San Francisco, be sure to carry a water bottle there. Why? Because the Board of Supervisors voted this week to ban the sale of single-use bottles of water in city buildings and parks and at city-permitted events, making San Francisco the largest municipality in the country to phase out plastic water bottles. The ban will cover indoor events starting Oct. 1, and will be extended to all events by 2016. There would be exceptions for some sports outings, such as foot races, and planners could apply for waivers if they can't secure a water supply.
March 4, 2014 | By Ralph Vartabedian
The storms that doused Los Angeles County over the weekend filled reservoirs in the San Gabriel Mountains with some 6 billion gallons of water, enough to supply more than 150,000 people for a year. The twin storms left more than 11 inches of rain in some higher elevations. The rainfall from the storms was enough to substantially fill some dams that were at minimum levels, according to the Los Angeles County Department of Public Works, which operates 14 dams and debris basins in local ranges.
February 27, 2014 | By Melanie Mason and Patrick McGreevy
SACRAMENTO - A $687.4-million emergency drought relief package is on its way to Gov. Jerry Brown's desk after easily clearing the Legislature on Thursday. Brown and legislative leaders unveiled the proposal last week to free up the state's water supplies and aid residents who face hardship due to the drought. "Today we provide significant relief," state Senate leader Darrell Steinberg (D-Sacramento) said in a floor speech. "This is a lot of money and will help thousands of California families dealing with the drought.
February 23, 2014 | By Bettina Boxall
The skinny rings of ancient giant sequoias and foxtail pines hold a lesson that Californians are learning once again this winter: It can get very dry, sometimes for a single parched year, sometimes for withering decades. Drought has settled over the state like a dusty blanket, leaving much of the landscape a dreary brown. Receding reservoirs have exposed the ruins of long-forgotten towns. Some cities are rationing supplies and banning outdoor watering. Many growers are expecting no irrigation deliveries from the big government water projects that turned the state's belly into the nation's produce market.
February 19, 2014 | Patt Morrison
If there are stars among the state's water experts, Jay Famiglietti is one, with titles too long for a marquee: a UC Irvine professor of earth system science and head of the UC Center for Hydrologic Modeling, and a new member of the Santa Ana Regional Water Quality Control Board among them. He'd like to rescue us from our bad H2O habits before the last reel, which is why he's laying out our thirsty realities in places like the 2011 documentary, "Last Call at the Oasis," and right here.
February 19, 2014 | By Anthony York
SACRAMENTO -- A proposed $687.4-million drought-relief package was unveiled Wednesday to free up water supplies and aid Californians facing financial ruin. The proposal presented by Gov. Jerry Brown and legislative leaders would provide millions of dollars to clean up drinking water, improve conservation and make irrigation systems more efficient. "We really don't know how bad the drought is going to be," Brown said to reporters at the state's emergency operations center. The plan contains money for emergency food and housing for those out of work because of the drought, including farmworkers, and to provide emergency drinking water to communities in need.
January 29, 2014 | By David Zucchino, This post has been updated and corrected, as indicated below.
First, federal regulators couldn't explain the possible health dangers posed by the mysterious coal-cleansing chemical that spilled into West Virginia's drinking water -- except that pregnant woman shouldn't drink it even after the water had been declared safe for everyone else. Then the chemical company responsible for the spill belatedly admitted a second, equally unpronounceable chemical containing ether also had been dumped into the water. Now comes this warning for hundreds of thousands of West Virginians: They may be inhaling formaldehyde while showering in the tainted water, which was declared safe for human consumption a week after the Jan. 9 spill into the Elk River just north of downtown Charleston.
January 16, 2014 | By David Zucchino
Few people in West Virginia had any idea that an obscure company was storing a mysterious coal-washing chemical in tanks overlooking the Elk River, just upstream from a major water treatment plant. Nor did many realize that no agency had conducted regular inspections of those tanks, even though they are perched on a steep bank that tumbles down to the river northeast of downtown Charleston. On the morning of Jan. 9, residents complained about a licorice-like odor wafting from the site, operated by a chemical company with the unlikely name of Freedom Industries.
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