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Water Is For Fighting Over

Author: John Fleck
Publisher: Island Press
ISBN: 1610916808
Size: 68.16 MB
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When we think of water in the West, we think of conflict and crisis. In recent years, newspaper headlines have screamed,"Scarce water and the death of California farms,” "The Dust Bowl returns,” "A ‘megadrought' will grip U.S. in thecoming decades.” Yet similar stories have been appearing for decades and the taps continue to flow. John Fleck arguesthat the talk of impending doom is not only untrue, but dangerous. When people get scared, they fight for the last drop ofwater; but when they actually have less, they use less. Having covered environmental issues in the West for a quarter century, Fleck would be the last writer to discount theserious problems posed by a dwindling Colorado River. But in that time, Fleck has also seen people in the Colorado RiverBasin come together, conserve, and share the water that is available. Western communities, whether farmers and city-dwellers or US environmentalists and Mexican water managers, have a promising record of cooperation, a recordoften obscured by the crisis narrative. In this fresh take on western water, Fleck brings to light the true history of collaboration and examines the bondscurrently being forged to solve the Basin's most dire threats. Rather than perpetuate the myth "Whiskey's for drinkin', water's for fightin' over," Fleck urges readers to embrace a new, more optimistic narrative—a future where the Colorado continues to flow.

The Water Problem

Author: Pat Mulroy
Publisher: Brookings Institution Press
ISBN: 0815727860
Size: 62.38 MB
Format: PDF, Kindle
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Building water resilience is the single biggest challenge in a changing global climate. The United States faces a water crisis as critical as the energy crisis that once dominated headlines. Like the energy crisis, a solution can be found. Pat Mulroy, for many years general manager of the Southern Nevada Water Authority, the lead negotiator on the Colorado River for the State of Nevada, and a Brookings fellow, has gathered a number of practitioners and scholars to show us why we face a crisis caused by climate change and what we can do to alleviate it. While the focus recently has been on California, with its water restrictions and drought, many other parts of the United States are also suffering from current and potential water shortages that will only be exacerbated by climate change. The Water Problem takes us to Miami and the problem of rising oceans fouling freshwater reservoirs; Kansas and Nebraska, where intensive farming is draining age-old aquifers; and to the Southwest United States, where growing populations are creating enormous stresses on the already strained Colorado River. Mulroy and her contributors explore not just the problems, but also what we can do now to put in place measures to deal with a very real crisis.

Running Dry

Author: Jonathan Waterman
Publisher: National Geographic Books
ISBN: 1426205058
Size: 49.93 MB
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Water Follies

Author: Robert Jerome Glennon
Publisher: Island Press
ISBN: 9781597267878
Size: 41.91 MB
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"...a book as rich in detail as it is devastating in its argument." -SCIENTIFIC AMERICAN "Water Follies deserves a place alongside the late Marc Reisner's classic Cadillac Desert." -ENVIRONMENT "a lively account of hydrology" -NEW YORK REVIEW OF BOOKS "if you want to scare yourself silly, read Water Follies, by Robert Jerome Glennon. In it you'll learn how America is irrigating itself to death-just like the Sumerians-while sucking its groundwater aquifers dry." -TORONTO GLOBE & MAIL "Even if you are not working with water issues, you should read this book for a wider awareness of the depth and importance of groundwater impacts, right down to the bottle of water you are probably drinking right now." -CONSERVATION IN PRACTICE "To law professor Robert Glennon, the names Perrier and Poland pack a fearful punch, for they and the other huge producers of bottled water are feeding a craze that puts the environment on the brink of disaster." -PUBLISHERS WEEKLY The Santa Cruz River that once flowed through Tucson, Arizona is today a sad mirage of a river. Except for brief periods following heavy rainfall, it is bone dry. The cottonwood and willow trees that once lined its banks have died, and the profusion of birds and wildlife recorded by early settlers are nowhere to be seen. The river is dead. What happened? Where did the water go. As Robert Glennon explains in Water Follies, what killed the Santa Cruz River -- and could devastate other surface waters across the United States -- was groundwater pumping. From 1940 to 2000, the volume of water drawn annually from underground aquifers in Tucson jumped more than six-fold, from 50,000 to 330,000 acre-feet per year. And Tucson is hardly an exception -- similar increases in groundwater pumping have occurred across the country and around the world. In a striking collection of stories that bring to life the human and natural consequences of our growing national thirst, Robert Glennon provides an occasionally wry and always fascinating account of groundwater pumping and the environmental problems it causes. Robert Glennon sketches the culture of water use in the United States, explaining how and why we are growing increasingly reliant on groundwater. He uses the examples of the Santa Cruz and San Pedro rivers in Arizona to illustrate the science of hydrology and the legal aspects of water use and conflicts. Following that, he offers a dozen stories -- ranging from Down East Maine to San Antonio's River Walk to Atlanta's burgeoning suburbs -- that clearly illustrate the array of problems caused by groundwater pumping. Each episode poses a conflict of values that reveals the complexity of how and why we use water. These poignant and sometimes perverse tales tell of human foibles including greed, stubbornness, and, especially, the unlimited human capacity to ignore reality. As Robert Glennon explores the folly of our actions and the laws governing them, he suggests common-sense legal and policy reforms that could help avert potentially catastrophic future effects. Water Follies, the first book to focus on the impact of groundwater pumping on the environment, brings this widespread but underappreciated problem to the attention of citizens and communities across America.

Cadillac Desert

Author: Marc Reisner
Publisher: Penguin
ISBN: 9781440672828
Size: 76.45 MB
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"The definitive work on the West's water crisis." --Newsweek The story of the American West is the story of a relentless quest for a precious resource: water. It is a tale of rivers diverted and dammed, of political corruption and intrigue, of billion-dollar battles over water rights, of ecological and economic disaster. In his landmark book, Cadillac Desert, Marc Reisner writes of the earliest settlers, lured by the promise of paradise, and of the ruthless tactics employed by Los Angeles politicians and business interests to ensure the city's growth. He documents the bitter rivalry between two government giants, the Bureau of Reclamation and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, in the competition to transform the West. Based on more than a decade of research, Cadillac Desert is a stunning expose and a dramatic, intriguing history of the creation of an Eden--an Eden that may only be a mirage. From the Trade Paperback edition.

Water Resources

Author: Shimon C. Anisfeld
Publisher: Island Press
ISBN: 9781597269735
Size: 26.31 MB
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In this concise introduction to water resources, Shimon Anisfeld explores the fundamental interactions between humans and water, including drinking, sanitation, irrigation, and power production. The book familiarizes students with the current water crisis and with approaches for managing this essential resource more effectively in a time of rapid environmental and social change. Anisfeld addresses both human and ecological problems, including scarcity, pollution, disease, flooding, conflicts over water, and degradation of aquatic ecosystems. In addition to providing the background necessary to understand each of these problems, the book discusses ways to move towards better management and addresses the key current debates in the water policy field. In the past, water development has often proceeded in a single-sector fashion, with each group of users implementing its own plans without coordination with other groups, resulting in both conflict and inefficiency. Now, Anisfeld writes, the challenge of water management is figuring out how to balance all the different demands for water, from sanitation to energy generation to ecosystem protection. For inquiring students of any level, Water Resources provides a comprehensive one-volume guide to a complex but vital field of study.

Where The Water Goes

Author: David Owen
Publisher: Penguin
ISBN: 0698189906
Size: 66.95 MB
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An eye-opening account of where our water comes from and where it all goes. The Colorado River is an essential resource for a surprisingly large part of the United States, and every gallon that flows down it is owned or claimed by someone. David Owen traces all that water from the Colorado’s headwaters to its parched terminus, once a verdant wetland but now a million-acre desert. He takes readers on an adventure downriver, along a labyrinth of waterways, reservoirs, power plants, farms, fracking sites, ghost towns, and RV parks, to the spot near the U.S.–Mexico border where the river runs dry. Water problems in the western United States can seem tantalizingly easy to solve: just turn off the fountains at the Bellagio, stop selling hay to China, ban golf, cut down the almond trees, and kill all the lawyers. But a closer look reveals a vast man-made ecosystem that is far more complex and more interesting than the headlines let on. The story Owen tells in Where the Water Goes is crucial to our future: how a patchwork of engineering marvels, byzantine legal agreements, aging infrastructure, and neighborly cooperation enables life to flourish in the desert —and the disastrous consequences we face when any part of this tenuous system fails.

Seeing Things Whole

Author: John Wesley Powell
Publisher: Island Press
ISBN: 1610913248
Size: 53.76 MB
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John Wesley Powell was an American original. He was the last of the nation's great continental explorers and the first of a new breed of public servant: part scientist, part social reformer, part institution builder. His work and life reveal an enduringly valuable way of thinking about land, water, and society as parts of an interconnected whole; he was America's first great bioregional thinker. Seeing Things Whole presents John Wesley Powell in the full diversity of his achievements and interests, bringing together in a single volume writings ranging from his gripping account of exploring the Colorado River through the Grand Canyon to his views on the evolution of civilization, along with the seminal writings in which he sets forth his ideas on western settlement and the allocation and management of western resources. The centerpiece of Seeing Things Whole is a series of selections from the famous 1878 Report on the Lands of the Arid Region and related magazine articles in which Powell further develops the themes of the report. John Wesley Powell's bioregional vision remains a model for governance that many westerners see as a viable solution to the resource management conflicts that continue to plague the region. Throughout the collection, award-winning writer and historian William deBuys brilliantly sets the historical context for Powell's work. Section introductions and extensive descriptive notes take the reader through the evolution of John Wesley Powell's interests and ideas from his critique of Social Darwinism and landmark categorization of Indian languages to the climactic yet ultimately futile battles he fought to win adoption of his land-use proposals. Seeing Things Whole presents the essence of the extraordinary legacy that John Wesley Powell has left to the American people, and to people everywhere who strive to reconcile the demands of society with the imperatives of the land.

River Of Lost Souls

Author: Jonathan P. Thompson
Publisher: Torrey House Press
ISBN: 1937226840
Size: 53.36 MB
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Award–winning investigative environmental journalist Jonathan P. Thompson digs into the science, politics, and greed behind the 2015 Gold King Mine disaster, and unearths a litany of impacts wrought by a century and a half of mining, energy development, and fracking in southwestern Colorado. Amid these harsh realities, Thompson explores how a new generation is setting out to make amends. As shocking and heartbreaking as the Gold King spill and its aftermath may be, it's merely the tip of the proverbial iceberg. The disaster itself was the climax of the long and troubled story of the Gold King mine, staked by a Swedish immigrant back in 1887. And it was only the most visible manifestation of a slow–moving, multi–faceted environmental catastrophe that had been unfolding here long before the events of August 5, 2015. Jonathan Thompson is a native Westerner with deep roots in southwestern Colorado. He has been an environmental journalist focusing on the American West since he signed on as reporter and photographer at the Silverton Standard & the Miner newspaper in 1996. He has worked and written for High Country News for over a decade, serving as editor-in-chief from 2007 to 2010. He was a Ted Scripps fellow in environmental journalism at the University of Colorado in Boulder, and in 2016 he was awarded the Society of Environmental Journalists' Outstanding Beat Reporting, Small Market. He currently lives in Bulgaria with his wife Wendy and daughters Lydia and Elena.

A Land Made From Water

Author: Robert R. Crifasi
Publisher: University Press of Colorado
ISBN: 1607323826
Size: 64.77 MB
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A Land Made from Water chronicles how the appropriation and development of water and riparian resources in Colorado changed the face of the Front Range—an area that was once a desert and is now an irrigated oasis suitable for the habitation and support of millions of people. This comprehensive history of human intervention in the Boulder Creek and Lefthand Creek valleys explores the complex interactions between environmental and historical factors to show how thoroughly the environment along the Front Range is a product of human influence. Author Robert Crifasi examines the events that took place in nineteenth-century Boulder County, Colorado, and set the stage for much of the water development that occurred throughout Colorado and the American West over the following century. Settlers planned and constructed ditches, irrigation systems, and reservoirs; initiated the seminal court decisions establishing the appropriation doctrine; and instigated war to wrest control of the region from the local Native American population. Additionally, Crifasi places these river valleys in the context of a continent-wide historical perspective. By examining the complex interaction of people and the environment over time, A Land Made from Water links contemporary issues facing Front Range water users to the historical evolution of the current water management system and demonstrates the critical role people have played in creating ecosystems that are often presented to the public as “natural” or “native.” It will appeal to students, scholars, professionals, and general readers interested in water history, water management, water law, environmental management, political ecology, or local natural history.