Behold the Stupidest Government Report EVER

The drought in America is historic, affecting more than 30 percent of the United States and 37 percent of the lower 48 states. My friend, John Fleck , who used to write about nukes at the Albuquerque Journal, is the doyen of all things water in the west, and when we met last year in New Mexico, he put the fear of God… » 5/04/15 2:11pm Yesterday 2:11pm

California's Drought Is Making Its Dying Inland Sea Even More Toxic

Most of the narratives about California’s drought focus on the state’s Central Valley, where the nonexistent snowpack from the Sierras is threatening the economic vitality of the region. But the other, lesser told story is playing out in the southeast corner of the state, where the lack of water is actually poisoning… » 5/01/15 6:20pm Friday 6:20pm

How to Use Instagram to Track Climate Change

In Los Angeles, the transition from spring to summer is heralded by the blooming of jacarandas, a photogenic tree that explodes in bright lavender fireworks and sprinkles flowers across the city like purple rain. But as I Instagrammed my sneakers against the rubbery petals the other week, I had a nagging feeling—this… » 5/01/15 11:00am Friday 11:00am

Starbucks Sells California's Scarce Water to "Help" People Without Water

When you buy a bottle of water at Starbucks, five cents goes towards “improving the lives of people who lack vital resources,” according to the in-house brand named Ethos Water. That may be true, but there’s a catch: The water’s bottled in a part of California where people’s wells are running dry. » 4/29/15 1:20pm Wednesday 1:20pm

Lake Mead Is Now Lower Than Ever, But Vegas Has a Crazy Survival Plan

Yesterday, the surface of Lake Mead reached its lowest level since it was filled in 1937—1,080 feet above sea level. But engineers were prepared for this: A huge infrastructural project under the lake has been underway since 2008 to ensure that Vegas residents will still be able to get water, even as the drought… » 4/28/15 3:30pm 4/28/15 3:30pm

California Farmers Without Water Are Installing Solar Panels Instead

Due to the unprecedented drought, many of California’s farmers won’t be allocated any water this year, thanks to the way that the state’s water rights work. But what actually happens to the farms that don’t get water? Some of the farmers are ditching produce altogether for a more profitable alternative to… » 4/27/15 6:49pm 4/27/15 6:49pm

The Minority Report Of Famine Prediction Knows Where To Send Aid

On a day spent dodging Periscope unboxings of Apple Watches on the other side of the country, it’s difficult to believe that there’s too little information in the world. But when it comes to life-and-death predictions of agriculture in Africa, our system is woefully inadequate, and the only hope is space. » 4/24/15 5:50pm 4/24/15 5:50pm

William Shatner Is Crowdsourcing Ideas for His Bonkers Drought Plan

Hey, we’ve all got ideas to save California from its cataclysmic drought. Stop fracking! Stop showering! Stop eating! But none of us is William Shatner: Enterprise captain, Priceline spokesperson, Twitter watchdog, and probably, definitely, most certainly not a water expert. This is not preventing him from proposing… » 4/24/15 12:15pm 4/24/15 12:15pm

Why The Data On California's Biggest Water Hogs Isn't Public 

It might seem like all of California is busy naming scapegoats who consume unfair shares of water during the state’s historic drought. But there’s actually no way for the public to go after the state’s worst water wasters because there’s no way of knowing who they are. Legislation has ensured that much of the state’s… » 4/21/15 6:00pm 4/21/15 6:00pm

Resurrecting 1500-Year-Old Canals Could Fix Peru's Water Shortages 

Lima is one of the world’s largest desert cities, so when it rains it—just kidding, it pretty much never rains. Which leaves Peru’s capital city especially vulnerable to water shortages, and the surprising solution might be reviving a system of ancient canals that date back to even before the Incas. » 4/09/15 6:00pm 4/09/15 6:00pm

Oil Companies Are Selling Dirty Wastewater to Drought-Stricken Farms 

If we’re talking about who’s wasting water during California’s drought, one of the big culprits is oil production—about 10 gallons of wastewater are produced for every gallon of oil. Now oil companies like Chevron are selling that water back to farmers. But it’s not as tidy of an idea as you’d think.
» 4/09/15 3:10pm 4/09/15 3:10pm

Seriously, Stop Demonizing Almonds

We have seen the real cause of the California drought, and it’s one crunchy inch tall. One gallon of water to grow a single nut? BAN THEM ALL, writes everyone. But almond outrage is misplaced. We shouldn’t stop eating any fruit or vegetable due to how much water it takes to grow it. Especially when there actually is » 4/08/15 11:00am 4/08/15 11:00am

São Paulo Is Running So Low on Water People Might Be "Warned to Flee"

São Paulo is Brazil's largest and wealthiest city, a bustling concrete jungle of 11 million people. Now imagine the city going for days without water for drinking, bathing, or cleaning—it's a dystopian scenario not far from São Paulo's reality thanks to a water crisis made worse by drought. » 2/17/15 1:30pm 2/17/15 1:30pm