"In a country where the value of land often depends on access to water, powerful interests in agriculture, heavy industry and real estate draw vast amounts of water out of the ground. For generations, that water has been treated as an unlimited resource in much of the United States, freely available to anyone who owns a piece of land and can drill a well. Entire local economies have been built around the assumption that the water will never run out."
Water & Oceans
In the second of two parts on how to report locally on wetlands permitting, the latest Reporter’s Toolbox helps you muck around an Army Corps of Engineers “permit finder” database that’s accurate and particularly good for zooming in on map-based geographic data. Plus, see the part one TipSheet on how reemerging wetlands controversy brings the issue to your area.
"In a dark, unexplored layer of ocean, a hidden cache of fish might play an unexpected role in our climate’s future. It seems like a bad time for a new fishery."
"A treasure trove of metal is hiding at the bottom of the ocean. Potato-size nodules of iron and manganese litter the seafloor, and metal-rich crusts cover underwater mountains and chimneys along hydrothermal vents. Deep-sea mining companies have set their sights on these minerals, aiming to use them in batteries and electronics. Environmentalists warn that the mining process and the plumes of sediment it would dump back into the sea could affect marine life."
"Mining the critical minerals needed for electric vehicle batteries could threaten local water supply and Indigenous culture."
"Monsoon rains have finally passed and floods blocking the lone dirt road have retreated enough for a small truck to climb these Himalayan foothills to a gurgling spring. It spews water so fresh that people here call it nectar."
"Authorities were using skimmers and remote vehicles to respond to an oil leak off the coast of Plaquemines Parish on Monday, with more than a million gallons having potentially been spilled, the Coast Guard said."
"Quinault Nation shuttered its fall coho fishery a month early this year after harvest numbers came in at just a fraction of what was expected. Now, fishery leaders have called on the state to do the same."
"For a desert city, Dubai appears like a water wonderland. Visitors can scuba dive in the world’s deepest pool or ski inside a mega mall where penguins play in freshly made snow. A fountain — billed as the world’s largest — sprays more than 22,000 gallons of water into the air, synchronized to music from surrounding speakers."
Wetlands provide a wide array of ecological and societal benefits. But in the United States, they also represent a morass of conflicting views going back decades on how best to regulate them. Now a recent Supreme Court ruling and proposed federal rules are the source of new discord. The latest TipSheet explores how best to cover the wetlands controversy for your community.