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Great Lakes record lows (Audio, slideshow, Youtube)
Lester Graham, The Environment Report
The Great Lakes are hitting new record low water levels. The water is so low that big 1000-foot cargo ships are running aground. There’s debate about whether this is just part of the historic ups and downs of the Great Lakes, or if it’s the effects of global warming. Lester Graham reports from Lake Michigan’s Muskegon River, a trouble spot for some of the big ships:
(31 December 2007)
Thirsting for answers in dry Georgia
Larry Copeland, USA Today
…Drought had ravaged San Diego, too, but its legacy was far different [than droughts in Georgia].
A six-year drought that ended in 1992 prompted conservation measures and other steps that enabled the metropolitan area to add a half-million people without substantially increasing water usage.
The sharply contrasting ways that normally rainy metropolitan Atlanta and semi-arid San Diego County have dealt with growth and water consumption are an instructive tale that might offer clues to Georgia legislators as they try again in January to divvy up the region’s precarious water supply.
A key difference in the two approaches is the conservation ethic. San Diego, which averages about 10 inches of rain a year in a region where water conservation is part of the fabric of life, has one. Atlanta, which averages nearly 50 inches annually – but not for the past two years – does not.
San Diego long has been on the cutting edge of conservation. The city Water Department, for example, this month moved forward on a pilot project in which treated sewage would be purified and used to boost water supplies.
That kind of innovative action has not been seen in north Georgia, where the main water source, Lake Lanier, now looks more like a lunar landscape than a sparkling reservoir
(18 December 2007)
All About: Water and Health
Rachel Oliver, CNN
The next time you fall sick and someone suggests it’s because of something in the water, they could be right. According to the World Bank, 88 percent of all diseases are caused by unsafe drinking water, inadequate sanitation and poor hygiene.
The number are daunting. Annually, water-related problems are responsible for: … [list of diseases]
At any one point in time, 50 percent of all people in the developing world will be in hospital suffering from one or more water-related diseases. Most will be children, water-related diseases being the second biggest killer of children worldwide.
(20 December 2007)