01 September 2014

Speed blogging

  1. A photo essay from "the wettest place on Earth"

  2. Department of uh-oh: "Pennsylvania [finally] reveals over 200 cases of fracking-related contamination." I'm guessing that most of these are related to sloppy exploration and production, but definitely a sign that regulations and enforcement are less important than jobs money

  3. The World Bank's 300 page book, Who Benefits from Utility Subsidies [pdf] conducts a detailed analysis and concludes that "the vast majority of utility subsidies practiced today are regressive." Policy recommendations include emphasis on connecting people to the grid, subsidizing only a small quantity of consumption, and shifting subsidies out of utilities and into other social programs (e.g., education, health, etc.). The book is from 2005, but the message is for now

  4. Reality check: "California has allocated five times more surface water than the state actually has." We've known this for years. Time to retire some "rights" to protect the environment and improve the use of "wet" rights

  5. Groundwater in the Tigris/Euphrates region (Turkey, Syria, Iraq) is being depleted rapidly, which can only mean more environmental, social and economic stress for people already facing violence. Related: Iran's Urmia (the largest lake in the region) is drying up due to diversion of water from the rivers that feed it. Another example (like the Aral Sea and Dead Sea) of the eco-catastrophe resulting from cheap irrigation

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