Nature

Replenish

The Virtuous Cycle of Water and Prosperity

Author: Sandra Postel

Publisher: Island Press

ISBN: 1610917901

Category: Nature

Page: 328

View: 1459

"Nothing is more important to life than water, and no one knows water better than Sandra Postel. Replenish is a wise, sobering, but ultimately hopeful book." —Elizabeth Kolbert "Clear-eyed treatise...Postel makes her case eloquently." —Booklist, starred review "An informative, purposeful argument." —Kirkus We have disrupted the natural water cycle for centuries in an effort to control water for our own prosperity. Yet every year, recovery from droughts and floods costs billions of dollars, and we spend billions more on dams, diversions, levees, and other feats of engineering. These massive projects not only are risky financially and environmentally, they often threaten social and political stability. What if the answer was not further control of the water cycle, but repair and replenishment? Sandra Postel takes readers around the world to explore water projects that work with, rather than against, nature’s rhythms. In New Mexico, forest rehabilitation is safeguarding drinking water; along the Mississippi River, farmers are planting cover crops to reduce polluted runoff; and in China, “sponge cities” are capturing rainwater to curb urban flooding. Efforts like these will be essential as climate change disrupts both weather patterns and the models on which we base our infrastructure. We will be forced to adapt. The question is whether we will continue to fight the water cycle or recognize our place in it and take advantage of the inherent services nature offers. Water, Postel writes, is a gift, the source of life itself. How will we use this greatest of gifts?
Political Science

Replenish

The Virtuous Cycle of Water and Prosperity

Author: Sandra Postel

Publisher: Island Press

ISBN: 161091791X

Category: Political Science

Page: 336

View: 7967

We have disrupted the natural water cycle for centuries in an effort to control water for our own prosperity. Yet every year, recovery from droughts and floods costs billions of dollars, and we spend billions more on dams, diversions, levees, and other feats of engineering.These massive projects not only are risky financially and environmentally, they often threaten social and political stability. What if the answer was not further control of the water cycle, but repair and replenishment? Sandra Postel takes readers around the world to explore water projects that work with, rather than against, nature'srhythms. In New Mexico, forest rehabilitation is safeguarding drinking water; along the Mississippi River, farmers are planting cover crops toreduce polluted runoff; and in China, "sponge cities” are capturing rainwater to curb urban flooding. Efforts like these will be essential as climate change disrupts both weather patterns and the models on which we base our infrastructure. We will be forced to adapt. The question is whether we will continue to fight the water cycle or recognize our place in it and take advantage of the inherservices nature offers. Water, Postel writes, is a gift,the source of life itself. How will we use this greatest of gifts?
Nature

Rivers for Life

Managing Water For People And Nature

Author: Sandra Postel,Brian Richter

Publisher: Island Press

ISBN: 1597267805

Category: Nature

Page: 220

View: 9074

The conventional approach to river protection has focused on water quality and maintaining some ""minimum"" flow that was thought necessary to ensure the viability of a river. In recent years, however, scientific research has underscored the idea that the ecological health of a river system depends not on a minimum amount of water at any one time but on the naturally variable quantity and timing of flows throughout the year. In Rivers for Life, leading water experts Sandra Postel and Brian Richter explain why restoring and preserving more natural river flows are key to sustaining freshwater biodiversity and healthy river systems, and describe innovative policies, scientific approaches, and management reforms for achieving those goals. Sandra Postel and Brian Richter: explain the value of healthy rivers to human and ecosystem health; describe the ecological processes that support river ecosystems and how they have been disrupted by dams, diversions, and other alterations; consider the scientific basis for determining how much water a river needs; examine new management paradigms focused on restoring flow patterns and sustaining ecological health; assess the policy options available for managing rivers and other freshwater systems; explore building blocks for better river governance Sandra Postel and Brian Richter offer case studies of river management from the United States (the San Pedro, Green, and Missouri), Australia (the Brisbane), and South Africa (the Sabie), along with numerous examples of new and innovative policy approaches that are being implemented in those and other countries. Rivers for Life presents a global perspective on the challenges of managing water for people and nature, with a concise yet comprehensive overview of the relevant science, policy, and management issues. It presents exciting and inspirational information for anyone concerned with water policy, planning and management, river conservation, freshwater biodiversity, or related topics.
Science

Pillar of Sand

Can the Irrigation Miracle Last?

Author: Sandra Postel

Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company

ISBN: 9780393319378

Category: Science

Page: 313

View: 6656

The overriding lesson from history is that most irrigation-based civilizations fail. As we enter the third millennium, the question arises: Will ours be any different?
Law

The Last Oasis

Facing Water Scarcity

Author: Sandra Postel

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 1134161581

Category: Law

Page: 240

View: 1516

For decades now we have wasted and mismanaged the world?s water supplies. Today, 27 countries are short of water, a quarter of the world?s population has no safe water, 46 per cent have no proper sanitation and each year four million children die of water-borne diseases. As most of the world?s major river systems cross several national boundaries, the scope disputes and the threat to international security is becoming more and more real. In The Last Oasis, Sandra Postel examines the economic, ecological and political factors affecting fresh water supply. She confronts the issues of mismanagement and profligacy and analyses and dangers of confrontation, both between nations and between rural and urban users. She also emphasises that the technology and know-how for effective water husbandry does exist. With methods already in use, farmers could cut their demand for water by 40-90 per cent, and cities by one-third, without sacrificing economic output or quality of life. Investing in water efficiency, recycling and conservation help meet rising demands and stave off disaster. But the priority is a common recognition of the gravity of the position, and with that a widespread push for institutions to manage sustainable use of water.
Science

Chasing Water

A Guide for Moving from Scarcity to Sustainability

Author: Brian Richter

Publisher: Island Press

ISBN: 1610915372

Category: Science

Page: 192

View: 6292

Water scarcity is spreading and intensifying in many regions of the world, with dire consequences for local communities, economies, and freshwater ecosystems. Current approaches tend to rely on policies crafted at the state or national level, which on their own have proved insufficient to arrest water scarcity. To be durable and effective, water plans must be informed by the culture, economics, and varied needs of affected community members. International water expert Brian Richter argues that sustainable water sharing in the twenty-first century can only happen through open, democratic dialogue and local collective action. In Chasing Water, Richter tells a cohesive and complete story of water scarcity: where it is happening, what is causing it, and how it can be addressed. Through his engaging and nontechnical style, he strips away the complexities of water management to its bare essentials, providing information and practical examples that will empower community leaders, activists, and students to develop successful and long-lasting water programs. Chasing Water will provide local stakeholders with the tools and knowledge they need to take an active role in the watershed-based planning and implementation that are essential for water supplies to remain sustainable in perpetuity.
Science

The Death and Life of the Great Lakes

Author: Dan Egan

Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company

ISBN: 0393246442

Category: Science

Page: 384

View: 3534

A landmark work of science, history and reporting on the past, present and imperiled future of the Great Lakes. The Great Lakes—Erie, Huron, Michigan, Ontario and Superior—hold 20 percent of the world’s supply of surface fresh water and provide sustenance, work and recreation for tens of millions of Americans. But they are under threat as never before, and their problems are spreading across the continent. The Death and Life of the Great Lakes is prize-winning reporter Dan Egan’s compulsively readable portrait of an ecological catastrophe happening right before our eyes, blending the epic story of the lakes with an examination of the perils they face and the ways we can restore and preserve them for generations to come. For thousands of years the pristine Great Lakes were separated from the Atlantic Ocean by the roaring Niagara Falls and from the Mississippi River basin by a “sub-continental divide.” Beginning in the late 1800s, these barriers were circumvented to attract oceangoing freighters from the Atlantic and to allow Chicago’s sewage to float out to the Mississippi. These were engineering marvels in their time—and the changes in Chicago arrested a deadly cycle of waterborne illnesses—but they have had horrendous unforeseen consequences. Egan provides a chilling account of how sea lamprey, zebra and quagga mussels and other invaders have made their way into the lakes, decimating native species and largely destroying the age-old ecosystem. And because the lakes are no longer isolated, the invaders now threaten water intake pipes, hydroelectric dams and other infrastructure across the country. Egan also explores why outbreaks of toxic algae stemming from the overapplication of farm fertilizer have left massive biological “dead zones” that threaten the supply of fresh water. He examines fluctuations in the levels of the lakes caused by manmade climate change and overzealous dredging of shipping channels. And he reports on the chronic threats to siphon off Great Lakes water to slake drier regions of America or to be sold abroad. In an age when dire problems like the Flint water crisis or the California drought bring ever more attention to the indispensability of safe, clean, easily available water, The Death and the Life of the Great Lakes is a powerful paean to what is arguably our most precious resource, an urgent examination of what threatens it and a convincing call to arms about the relatively simple things we need to do to protect it.
Nature

Water 4.0

The Past, Present, and Future of the World's Most Vital Resource

Author: David Sedlak

Publisher: Yale University Press

ISBN: 030019935X

Category: Nature

Page: 349

View: 9015

Turn on the faucet, and water pours out. Pull out the drain plug, and the dirty water disappears. Most of us give little thought to the hidden systems that bring us water and take it away when we’re done with it. But these underappreciated marvels of engineering face an array of challenges that cannot be solved without a fundamental change to our relationship with water, David Sedlak explains in this enlightening book. To make informed decisions about the future, we need to understand the three revolutions in urban water systems that have occurred over the past 2,500 years and the technologies that will remake the system.div /DIVdivThe author starts by describing Water 1.0, the early Roman aqueducts, fountains, and sewers that made dense urban living feasible. He then details the development of drinking water and sewage treatment systems—the second and third revolutions in urban water. He offers an insider’s look at current systems that rely on reservoirs, underground pipe networks, treatment plants, and storm sewers to provide water that is safe to drink, before addressing how these water systems will have to be reinvented. For everyone who cares about reliable, clean, abundant water, this book is essential reading./DIV
Nature

Water is for Fighting Over

And Other Myths about Water in the West

Author: John Fleck

Publisher: Island Press

ISBN: 1610916794

Category: Nature

Page: 246

View: 5826

"Illuminating." --New York Times WIRED's Required Science Reading 2016 When we think of water in the West, we think of conflict and crisis. Yet despite decades of headlines warning of mega-droughts, the death of agriculture, and the collapse of cities, the Colorado River basin has thrived in the face of water scarcity. John Fleck shows how western communities, whether farmers and city-dwellers or U.S. environmentalists and Mexican water managers, actually have a promising record of conservation and cooperation. Rather than perpetuate the myth "Whiskey's for drinkin', water's for fightin' over," Fleck urges readers to embrace a new, more optimistic narrative--a future where the Colorado continues to flow.
Technology & Engineering

Plastic Water

The Social and Material Life of Bottled Water

Author: Gay Hawkins,Emily Potter,Kane Race

Publisher: MIT Press

ISBN: 0262329530

Category: Technology & Engineering

Page: 288

View: 1116

How did branded bottles of water insinuate themselves into our daily lives? Why did water become an economic good -- no longer a common resource but a commercial product, in industry parlance a "fast moving consumer good," or FMCG? Plastic Water examines the processes behind this transformation. It goes beyond the usual political and environmental critiques of bottled water to investigate its multiplicity, examining a bottle of water's simultaneous existence as, among other things, a product, personal health resource, object of boycotts, and part of accumulating waste matter. Throughout, the book focuses on the ontological dimensions of drinking bottled water -- the ways in which this habit enacts new relations and meanings that may interfere with other drinking water practices.The book considers the assemblage and emergence of a mass market for water, from the invention of the polyethylene terephthalate (PET) bottle in 1973 to the development of "hydration science" that accompanied the rise of jogging in the United States. It looks at what bottles do in the world, tracing drinking and disposal practices in three Asian cities with unreliable access to safe water: Bangkok, Chennai, and Hanoi. And it considers the possibility of ethical drinking, examining campaigns to "say no" to the bottle and promote the consumption of tap water in Canada, the United States, and Australia.
Reference

The State of the World's Water

Author: Maggie Black

Publisher: New Internationalist

ISBN: 1780263759

Category: Reference

Page: 128

View: 2856

Completely updated, the new edition of this groundbreaking atlas maps the competing claims on limited water supplies – made by farmers, industrialists and householders – and investigates the uses and abuses of the resource, as well as the vexed question of how it can be equitably managed.
Business & Economics

Water

Abundance, Scarcity, and Security in the Age of Humanity

Author: Jeremy J. Schmidt

Publisher: NYU Press

ISBN: 1479846422

Category: Business & Economics

Page: 320

View: 2267

An intellectual history of America's water management philosophy. Humans take more than their geological share of water, but they do not benefit from it equally. This imbalance has created an era of intense water scarcity that affects the security of individuals, states, and the global economy. For many, this brazen water grab and the social inequalities it produces reflect the lack of a coherent philosophy connecting people to the planet. Challenging this view, Jeremy Schmidt shows how water was made a “resource” that linked geology, politics, and culture to American institutions. Understanding the global spread and evolution of this philosophy is now key to addressing inequalities that exist on a geological scale. Water: Abundance, Scarcity, and Security in the Age of Humanity, details the remarkable intellectual history of America’s water management philosophy. It shows how this philosophy shaped early twentieth-century conservation in the United States, influenced American international development programs, and ultimately shaped programs of global governance that today connect water resources to the Earth system. Schmidt demonstrates how the ways we think about water reflect specific public and societal values, and illuminates the process by which the American approach to water management came to dominate the global conversation about water. Debates over how human impacts on the planet are connected to a new geological epoch—the Anthropocene—tend to focus on either the social causes of environmental crises or scientific assessments of the Earth system. Schmidt shows how, when it comes to water, the two are one and the same. The very way we think about managing water resources validates putting ever more water to use for some human purposes at the expense of others.
History

The Man Who Thought He Owned Water

On the Brink with American Farms, Cities, and Food

Author: Tershia D'Elgin

Publisher: University Press of Colorado

ISBN: 1607324962

Category: History

Page: 288

View: 4177

The Man Who Thought He Owned Water is author Tershia d'Elgin's fresh take on the gravest challenge of our time--how to support urbanization without killing ourselves in the process. The gritty story of her family's experience with water rights on its Colorado farm provides essential background about American farms, food, and water administration in the West in the context of growing cities and climate change. Enchanting and informative, The Man Who Thought He Owned Water is an appeal for urban-rural cooperation over water and resiliency. When her father bought his farm--Big Bend Station--he also bought the ample water rights associated with the land and the South Platte River, confident that he had secured the necessary resources for a successful endeavor. Yet water immediately proved fickle, hard to defend, and sometimes dangerous. Eventually those rights were curtailed without compensation. Through her family's story, d'Elgin dramatically frames the personal-scale implications of water competition, revealing how water deals, infrastructure, transport, and management create economic growth but also sever human connections to Earth's most vital resource. She shows how water flows to cities at the expense of American-grown food, as rural land turns to desert, wildlife starves, the environment degrades, and climate change intensifies. Depicting deep love, obsession, and breathtaking landscape, The Man Who Thought He Owned Water is an impassioned call to rebalance our relationship with water. It will be of great interest to anyone seeking to understand the complex forces affecting water resources, food supply, food security, and biodiversity in America.
Social Science

Liquidated

An Ethnography of Wall Street

Author: Karen Ho

Publisher: Duke University Press

ISBN: 0822391376

Category: Social Science

Page: 389

View: 4732

Financial collapses—whether of the junk bond market, the Internet bubble, or the highly leveraged housing market—are often explained as the inevitable result of market cycles: What goes up must come down. In Liquidated, Karen Ho punctures the aura of the abstract, all-powerful market to show how financial markets, and particularly booms and busts, are constructed. Through an in-depth investigation into the everyday experiences and ideologies of Wall Street investment bankers, Ho describes how a financially dominant but highly unstable market system is understood, justified, and produced through the restructuring of corporations and the larger economy. Ho, who worked at an investment bank herself, argues that bankers’ approaches to financial markets and corporate America are inseparable from the structures and strategies of their workplaces. Her ethnographic analysis of those workplaces is filled with the voices of stressed first-year associates, overworked and alienated analysts, undergraduates eager to be hired, and seasoned managing directors. Recruited from elite universities as “the best and the brightest,” investment bankers are socialized into a world of high risk and high reward. They are paid handsomely, with the understanding that they may be let go at any time. Their workplace culture and networks of privilege create the perception that job insecurity builds character, and employee liquidity results in smart, efficient business. Based on this culture of liquidity and compensation practices tied to profligate deal-making, Wall Street investment bankers reshape corporate America in their own image. Their mission is the creation of shareholder value, but Ho demonstrates that their practices and assumptions often produce crises instead. By connecting the values and actions of investment bankers to the construction of markets and the restructuring of U.S. corporations, Liquidated reveals the particular culture of Wall Street often obscured by triumphalist readings of capitalist globalization.
Fiction

The Book of Khalid

Author: Ameen Rihani

Publisher: BoD – Books on Demand

ISBN: 3732680789

Category: Fiction

Page: 208

View: 9291

Reproduction of the original: The Book of Khalid by Ameen Rihani
Architecture

Stewardship of the Built Environment

Sustainability, Preservation, and Reuse

Author: Robert A. Young

Publisher: Island Press

ISBN: 9781610912365

Category: Architecture

Page: 256

View: 699

When we think of green building, we tend to picture new construction. But Robert A. Young argues that the greenest building is often the one that has already been built. In Stewardship of the Built Environment, he shows howrehabilitating and reusing existing structures holds untapped potential for achieving sustainable communities. Students and professionals alike will discover the multifaceted benefits of reuse. Young begins by describing how historic preservation in the United States, often overlooked because of the predominant focus on new construction, is actually an important sustainable design strategy. He then examines thesocial, environmental, and economic benefits of preservation—from the societal value of reusing existing buildings to financial incentives available for rehabilitation. Young concludes with insights into the future of reusing buildings as a sustainability strategy.He also provides several informative appendices,including a glossary of key terms and acronyms and recommendations for further reading. Readers will become familiar with essential terminology; sustainability and historic preservation metrics; government oversight processes; and opportunities for smart growth afforded by rehabilitation. This knowledge is key to preserving the past while building a sustainable future.
Nature

High and Dry

Meeting the Challenges of the World's Growing Dependence on Groundwater

Author: William M. Alley,Rosemarie Alley

Publisher: Yale University Press

ISBN: 0300220383

Category: Nature

Page: 256

View: 3534

An engaging call to understand and protect groundwater, the primary source of drinking water for almost half of the world's population Groundwater is essential for drinking water and food security. It provides enormous environmental benefits by keeping streams and rivers flowing. But a growing global population, widespread use of industrial chemicals, and climate change threaten this vital resource. Groundwater depletion and contamination has spread from isolated areas to many countries throughout the world. In this accessible and timely book, hydrology expert William M. Alley and science writer Rosemarie Alley sound the call to protect groundwater. Drawing on examples from around the world, including case studies in the United States, Canada, Australia, India, and Sub-Saharan Africa, the authors examine groundwater from key scientific and socioeconomic perspectives. While addressing the serious nature of groundwater problems, the book includes stories of people who are making a difference in protecting this critical resource.
Nature

The Soil Will Save Us

How Scientists, Farmers, and Foodies Are Healing the Soil to Save the Planet

Author: Kristin Ohlson

Publisher: Rodale Books

ISBN: 1609615557

Category: Nature

Page: 256

View: 3441

Thousands of years of poor farming and ranching practices—and, especially, modern industrial agriculture—have led to the loss of up to 80 percent of carbon from the world's soils. That carbon is now floating in the atmosphere, and even if we stopped using fossil fuels today, it would continue warming the planet. In The Soil Will Save Us, journalist and bestselling author Kristin Ohlson makes an elegantly argued, passionate case for "our great green hope"—a way in which we can not only heal the land but also turn atmospheric carbon into beneficial soil carbon—and potentially reverse global warming. As the granddaughter of farmers and the daughter of avid gardeners, Ohlson has long had an appreciation for the soil. A chance conversation with a local chef led her to the crossroads of science, farming, food, and environmentalism and the discovery of the only significant way to remove carbon dioxide from the air—an ecological approach that tends not only to plants and animals but also to the vast population of underground microorganisms that fix carbon in the soil. Ohlson introduces the visionaries—scientists, farmers, ranchers, and landscapers—who are figuring out in the lab and on the ground how to build healthy soil, which solves myriad problems: drought, erosion, air and water pollution, and food quality, as well as climate change. Her discoveries and vivid storytelling will revolutionize the way we think about our food, our landscapes, our plants, and our relationship to Earth.
Science

The Water Will Come

Rising Seas, Sinking Cities, and the Remaking of the Civilized World

Author: Jeff Goodell

Publisher: Black Inc.

ISBN: 1743820178

Category: Science

Page: 352

View: 4655

An eye-opening and essential tour of the vanishing world What if Atlantis wasn't a myth, but an early precursor to a new age of great flooding? Across the globe, scientists and civilians alike are noticing rapidly rising sea levels, and higher and higher tides pushing more water directly into the places we live, from our most vibrant, historic cities to our last remaining traditional coastal villages. With each crack in the great ice sheets of the Arctic and Antarctica, and each tick upwards of Earth's thermometer, we are moving closer to the brink of broad disaster. By century's end, hundreds of millions of people will be retreating from the world's shores as our coasts become inundated and our landscapes transformed. From island nations to the world's major cities, coastal regions will disappear. Engineering projects to hold back the water are bold and may buy some time. Yet despite international efforts and tireless research, there is no permanent solution-no barriers to erect or walls to build-that will protect us in the end from the drowning of the world as we know it. The Water Will Come is the definitive account of the coming water, why and how this will happen, and what it will all mean. As he travels across twelve countries and reports from the front lines, acclaimed journalist Jeff Goodell employs fact, science, and first-person, on-the-ground journalism to show vivid scenes from what already is becoming a water world. Jeff Goodell is a contributing editor for Rolling Stone and a frequent contributor to the New York Times Magazine. He is the author of the New York Times bestseller Our Story: 77 Hours That Tested Our Friendship and Our Faith. Goodell’s memoir, Sunnyvale: The Rise and Fall of a Silicon Valley Family, was a New York Times Notable Book. The New York Times called his most recent book, Big Coal, “a compelling indictment of one of the country’s biggest, most powerful and most antiquated industries . . . well-written, timely, and powerful.”
Nature

Water in Plain Sight

Hope for a Thirsty World

Author: Judith D. Schwartz

Publisher: St. Martin's Press

ISBN: 1466879009

Category: Nature

Page: 256

View: 5190

Water scarcity is on everyone's mind. Long taken for granted, water availability has entered the realm of economics, politics, and people's food and lifestyle choices. But as anxiety mounts - even as a swath of California farmland has been left fallow and extremist groups worldwide exploit the desperation of people losing livelihoods to desertification - many are finding new routes to water security with key implications for food access, economic resilience, and climate change. Water does not perish, nor require millions of years to form as do fossil fuels. However, water is always on the move. In this timely, important book, Judith D. Schwartz presents a refreshing perspective on water that transcends zero-sum thinking. By allying with the water cycle, we can revive lush, productive landscapes. Like the river in rural Zimbabwe that, thanks to restorative grazing, now flows miles further than in living memory. Or the food forest of oranges, pomegranates, and native fruit-bearing plants in Tucson, grown through harvesting urban wastewater. Or the mini-oasis in West Texas nourished by dew. Animated by stories from around the globe, Water In Plain Sight is an inspiring reminder that fixing the future of our drying planet involves understanding what makes natural systems thrive.