Daily Digest: The drought solution that’s under our feet; Contaminated drinking water threatens California schools; Thanks to La Nina, drought could get worse this winter; and more …

In California water news today, The drought solution that’s under our feet; Contaminated drinking water threatens California schools; Thanks to La Nina, drought could get worse this winter; Think Modesto Irrigation District’s rates are low?  Better think again; Southern California: Lake Machado overrun with invasive snakes; Are drought truthers the new climate change deniers?

On the calendar today …

In the news today …

The drought solution that’s under our feet: Now in the fifth year of an epic drought, Californians have explored ways to save water and wring it out of typical and atypical sources. The search has spanned the gamut from funding research, investing in expensive solutions like desalination plants, toying with the idea of recycling wastewater, imposing water-use restrictions, letting lawns go dry and experimenting with irrigation efficiency techniques for the crops that feed the country.  … But is the Golden State missing a solution that could offer a high payout – a solution that’s right under its feet? Healthy soil that’s rich in organic matter has an ability to retain water that surpasses much more expensive solutions to the drought, yet not many people are aware of its potential to reduce farm water use. ... ”  Read more from Water Deeply here:  The drought solution that’s under our feet

Contaminated drinking water threatens California schools:  “Drinking fountains at some schools in Fresno Unified have been shut off for nearly two years due to lead and uranium contamination in the water.  El Camino Real Elementary School in Arvin, an agricultural community near Bakersfield, has given students durable water bottles and installed state-of-the-art filling stations that filter out harmful levels of arsenic found in the water supply there.  And, just last February, Healdsburg officials announced that they had begun providing bottled water to students last fall after detecting lead contamination at the elementary school’s drinking fountains.  These are but a few of the estimated 980 to 1,690 California schools possibly impacted by unsafe drinking water between 2003 and 2014, according to a new report state lawmakers are using to push for funding to help districts provide clean water. ... ” Read more from The Cabinet Report here:  Contaminated drinking water threatens California schools

Thanks to La Nina, drought could get worse this winter:  “Last month, state water officials eased conservation mandates in response to slightly above-average winter rain and snow in much of California, leading many to speculate that the state’s long-running drought has tapered off.  If only.  The El Niño winter that forecasters said could drench the state with rain and snow veered north instead, striking mostly the Pacific Northwest. The amount of rain and snow that hit Northern California was a tick above average and looked impressive mostly because it contrasted sharply with the extreme drought of the previous four years. Southern California was wetter than in previous years, but not by much. … ”  Read more from the OC Register here:  Thanks to La Nina, drought could get worse this winter

Think Modesto Irrigation District’s rates are low?  Better think again:  “It’s hot, so you crank up the air conditioning and brace for a higher electric bill.  In the old days, you might have taken some comfort in knowing that the Modesto Irrigation District’s prices were the lowest around. But a new Modesto Bee analysis finds that MID is making more money off residential customers than neighboring utilities and others throughout California, including Pacific Gas and Electric Co. ... ” Read more from the Modesto Irrigation District here:  Think Modesto Irrigation District’s rates are low?  Better think again

Southern California: Lake Machado overrun with invasive snakes: Scientists studying Lake Machado, the strange zoological stew in Ken Malloy Harbor Regional Park, say that there may be no good way to rid the body of water of thousands of non-native snakes that call it home. As the LA Times reports, biologists have been collecting and dissecting these southern water snakes since 2010. The snakes grow to be about three feet in length and feed mostly on fish and frogs. Park officials believe that the snakes, along with a number of other creatures in the lake, were introduced by nearby residents no longer interested in exotic pet ownership. With the southern water snake able to produce nearly 60 offspring in a single breeding season, the animals have multiplied quickly. Now, many are concerned they could eventually find their way into the river systems of Southern California. ... ”  Read more from Curbed LA here:  Southern California: Lake Machado overrun with invasive snakes

In commentary today …

Are drought truthers the new climate change deniers? Joseph Erbentraut writes, “Presumptive GOP presidential nominee Donald Trump has said some incredibly questionable and inaccurate things over the course of his campaign for the White House. But his comments last month on the California drought may have hit a new low, at least as far as science is concerned.  At a rally in Fresno on May 27, Trump suggested that he had the answer to California’s water problem: to simply “open up the water” for farmers because “there is no drought.”  Trump’s remarks might be the most high-profile example of drought trutherism yet. So could Trump, who has described climate change as a “man-made” “hoax” despite the overwhelming evidence to the contrary, help spur a new breed of drought deniers? … ” Read more from the Huffington Post here:   Are drought truthers the new climate change deniers?

More news and commentary in the weekend edition …

Also on Maven’s Notebook today …

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About the Daily Digest: The Daily Digest is a collection of selected news articles, commentaries and editorials appearing in the mainstream press. Items are generally selected to follow the focus of the Notebook blog. The Daily Digest is published every weekday with a weekend edition posting on Sundays.

 

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