FDA Expands Efforts to Detect PFAS in Food

The Food and Drug Administration is expanding its own capacity to test foods for certain “forever chemicals,” a senior agency official said Monday.

Expanded federal laboratory capability should help as the Department of Defense, states, and scientific researchers increase their testing of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) near military, industrial, and other sites with a history of having used the man-made chemicals.

The additional federal resources should also help state agencies dealing with suspected PFAS contamination in food.

California Water Czar Seeks Resource Collaboration, Not Combat

For E. Joaquin Esquivel, California has made great strides in fighting climate change and transitioning to a cleaner energy sector.

Now, he said, it’s water’s turn.

“Water, I think, is ready for that moment,” said Esquivel, the chairman of the California State Water Resources Control Board who took over from longtime chair Felicia Marcus in February.

The board has a broad mandate to oversee water resources and drinking water for the protection of the environment, public health, and other uses. That includes managing water rights and dealing with rural water issues, the latter of which is the topic of an Oct. 8 webinar on which Esquivel is speaking.

River Flows All Across the Globe Are Dropping

Another slow-motion, man-made environmental disaster has been discovered, and it’s underneath your feet.

About 70% of the water pumped out of underground aquifers worldwide is used for agriculture while much of the remainder quenches the thirst of cities. As industrial development spreads at a speedy clip, the rate at which those critical reservoirs are emptied is far outpacing the rate at which they are naturally replenished.

EPA Slams California Again, This Time On Raw Sewage Of Homeless

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency rapped California for allowing “piles of human feces” and other pollution tied to the state’s “homelessness crisis” to foul nearby waterways, opening a new front in a Trump administration battle with the nation’s most populous state.

EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler demanded California outline its plans for tackling the problem in a letter to Governor Gavin Newsom on Thursday.

The West Is Trading Water for Cash. The Water Is Running Out

Desert farmers along the Colorado River are striking lucrative deals with big cities. But not everyone comes out a winner.

When it comes to global warming’s one-two punch of inundation and drought, the presence of too much water has had the most impact on U.S. agriculture this year, with farmers in the Midwest swamped by flooding throughout the Mississippi Basin.


Is It Too Late to Save Wild Salmon?

Some of the world’s most famous conservationists have been hunters. Teddy Roosevelt, John James Audubon, and Ernest Hemingway each have the somewhat dubious distinction of saving animals’ habitats to try to kill them. Pacific salmon aren’t often mentioned alongside Roosevelt’s elephants or Hemingway’s tigers, but in Tucker Malarkey’s Stronghold (Random House, $28), fish is the biggest game of all. Malarkey’s protagonist is a charming misfit named Guido Rahr, who also happens to be her cousin. A naturalist almost as soon as he could walk, Rahr got hooked on fly fishing in his late teens, only to realize, to his horror, that the hydroelectric dams, agricultural runoff, commercial fishing industry, deforestation, and climate change in the Pacific Northwest could bring wild salmon to extinction.

OPINION: California Needs Clean Water

In 2012, former California governor Jerry Brown signed into law the Human Right to Water Act, recognizing that “every human being has the right to safe, clean, affordable, and accessible water.” At least 1 million Californians are still waiting to exercise that right, according to Brown’s successor, Governor Gavin Newsom, who has called the state’s water crisis a “moral disgrace and a medical emergency.”

The World Will Get Half Its Power From Wind, Solar By 2050

Nearly half the world’s electricity will come from renewable energy by 2050 as costs of wind, solar and battery storage continue to plummet. That titanic shift over the next three decades will come as electricity demand increases 62% and investors pump $13.3 trillion into new projects, according to a report released Tuesday by BloombergNEF. The move away from fossil fuel has sweeping implications for energy markets and the fight to stave off climate change. Wind, solar and batteries are poised to enable the power sector to meet its share of emission cuts required under the Paris climate agreement, at least until 2030, according to BNEF.

In Quest for Bigger Batteries, California Mulls Century-Old Idea

As the sun sets on California’s solar farms, a backup energy source deep in the Sierra Nevada Mountains springs to life. The huge system of reservoirs and turbines can store energy during the day and then crank out electricity for 900,000 homes, using just water and gravity.

As the state tries to make wind and solar work around the clock, officials want to build more like it. It won’t be easy: such projects take years to develop, are expensive and face stiff opposition.he push by California and other states to revive the century-old technology — called “pumped-hydro storage” — underscores the limitations of modern batteries.

Aberdeen To Buy Desalination Plant For More Than $1 Billion

An affiliate of Aberdeen Standard Investments has agreed to buy the Carlsbad desalination plant in Southern California for more than $1 billion, according to people with knowledge of the matter. A transaction could be announced as soon as this week, said one of the people, who asked not to be identified because the matter is private. The Claude “Bud” Lewis Carlsbad Desalination Plant, named for a former mayor, is owned by Orion Water Partners LLC, the joint venture between Stonepeak Infrastructure Partners and Brookfield Infrastructure Partners affiliate Poseidon.