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In Idaho, a Model for Long-Term Groundwater Recharge Tastes Success

A huge aquifer in the heart of Idaho’s most important farming region had been overdrafted. We talk to Brian Patton from the Idaho Water Resource Board about how state tax revenues are building recharge facilities to restore the aquifer.

Last winter, the state of Idaho succeeded in recharging 317,000 acre-feet of water into an important aquifer, enough to serve 700,000 homes for a year. It was an important milestone in an ambitious program to restore a groundwater source that had been overtapped for decades.
The water source is the Eastern Snake Plain Aquifer, a massive and complex groundwater source, which is also linked to springs that contribute to flows in the Snake River. A legal settlement among various water rights holders in 2015 compelled the state to begin replenishing the aquifer, which serves a variety of important constituents, including farms, cities and fish hatcheries.
With a large network of recharge facilities constructed already and more in the works, Idaho could be a model for other states struggling with groundwater depletion.

To read full article by Matt Weiser at News Deeply

Testing the Waters: Mobile Apps for Crowdsourced Streamflow Data

Citizen scientists keep a watchful eye on the world’s streams, catching intermittent streams in action and filling data gaps to construct a more complete hydrologic picture.
Do you drive, bike, or hike by streams on your way to a field site, the office, or home? Are you interested in how streams change through the seasons and years? If so, consider joining a growing crowd of people logging streamflow data using their mobile phones.
Two new projects—CrowdWater and Stream Tracker—focus on crowdsourced hydrologic measurements, and both have recently launched free smartphone applications to facilitate data collection along stream networks.

For full article by Stephanie Kampf at eos.org

USGS Student Internship Opportunity: Hydrologic Model Evaluation Summer Session

The USGS is seeking summer interns to evaluate hydrologic cycle models and observational data across the United States. A prototype tool has been developed that allows exploration of observations and model results at several spatial and temporal scales. During the summer, a team of students will engage in rigorous application of this tool to identify the strengths and weaknesses of existing models of the hydrologic cycle. Students will also have the opportunity to improve the tool and add functionality. Through frequent interactions with developers of hydrologic models within USGS, interns will be challenged to think critically about the representation of hydrologic processes used in models and to consider alternative strategies towards model development and evaluation. Students will be encouraged to think of their work as culminating in a presentation or scientific publication highlighting the strengths and weaknesses of hydrologic process representation. This unique summer session will be held at the USGS offices in the Denver Federal Center.
Applications through USAJobs are due April 10.
https://www.usajobs.gov/GetJob/ViewDetails/495004600
Please contact either of the project leads, William Farmer (wfarmer@usgs.gov, 303-236-4981) or Jessica Driscoll (jdriscoll@usgs.gov, 303-236-4979), with any questions.

Catherine L. Kling Seminar: “Improving Water Quality: Are Economics and the Environment Always at Odds?”

April 12, 4:00-5:30pm in University of Idaho Commons Summit Room
Catherine L. Kling, Charles F. Curtis Distinguished Professor of Economics, President’s Chair of Environmental Economics and Director of the Center for Agricultural and Rural Development at Iowa State University.
In this presentation, what is known about the current state of water quality in the United States, with a particular focus on agricultural sources, is outlined. With this backdrop, a range of policy and private market approaches to addressing agricultural water pollution problems will be discussed including the possible role of certification programs, water quality markets and trading, voluntary adoption of conservation practices, level of federal and state financial support, presence of state level regulations and the role of conservation compliance in the current and proposed Farm Bill.
Catherine L. Kling is the Charles F. Curtis Distinguished Professor of Economics, President’s Chair of Environmental Economics and Director of the Center for Agricultural and Rural Development at Iowa State University. She was elected to the National Academy of Sciences in 2015 and leads an interdisciplinary research group developing integrated assessment models related to agricultural land use, water quality and ecosystem service valuation.

Brian Chaffin Seminar: “Resilience, Governance, and food-energy-water policy in the Klamath River Basin, USA”

April 12, 10:30am in PACCAR 202
Brian Chaffin, Assistant Professor of Water Policy and Governance in the W.A. Franke College of Forestry & Conservation at the University of Montana.
Abstract: The Klamath River Basin straddles northern California and southern Oregon and has been the locus of a century-long struggle for community stability and ecosystem function in a system of over-allocated water resources. Along the Klamath River, multiple hydroelectric dams and extensive irrigation infrastructure have created economic and community dependence on irrigated agriculture as well as severely reduced aquatic habitat for the multiple endangered and threatened species in the basin. In the past several decades, however, the communities of the Klamath Basin have worked together in an effort to transform water management to promote greater resilience of both human populations and aquatic species to ongoing disturbances such as drought, and to comply with competing social, cultural, and political demands on water. In this seminar, Brian Chaffin will provide a brief overview of the contemporary applications of resilience as a framing concept for research on coupled, social-ecological systems. Specifically, Brian will discuss how certain aspects of “resilience thinking” have inspired new avenues for both developing and interrogating governance of broader human-environmental systems as well as management regimes for specific landscapes and resources such as those in the Klamath Basin. Brian will present evidence from his own social science research on governance transitions at the food-energy-water nexus, particularly from a case study of contemporary conflict and cooperation in the Klamath River Basin. Brian is an Assistant Professor of Water Policy and Governance in the W.A. Franke College of Forestry & Conservation at the University of Montana and a co-PI on an NSF Research Traineeship Program focused on innovations at the food-energy-water nexus.

Steve Olson to give a seminar on his book “Eruption: The Untold Story of Mount St. Helens” March 21, 5pm at WSU PACCAR 202.

March 21 in PACCAR 202 (4pm- refreshments and mixer; 5pm talk)

Steve Olson, who grew up in the Othello, Washington, will explore the historical forces that helped determine who lived and who died in the 1980 eruption of Mount St. Helens.

Title: Eruption: The Untold Story of Mount St. Helens

Steve Olson is the author of Eruption: The Untold Story of Mount St. Helens, which was named one of the top nonfiction books of 2016 by Amazon and won the Washington State Book Award. He also is the author of Mapping Human History: Genes, Race, and Our Common Origins, which was nominated for the National Book Award, and other books, and he has written for the Atlantic Monthly, Science, Nature, Scientific American, Wired, the Smithsonian, and many other magazines. Since 1979, he has been a consultant writer for the National Academy of Sciences, the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology, and other national scientific organizations. A native of Washington State, he now lives in Seattle.

Co-sponsors: Foley, CEREO, WRC, CEE, English Dept.

Flyer

American Water Resources Association: Richard A. Herbert Memorial Scholarship

THE 2018-2019 RICHARD A. HERBERT MEMORIAL SCHOLARSHIP APPLICATION PERIOD IS NOW OPEN!

APPLICATION DUE DATE IS APRIL 23, 2018

WILL AWARD $8,000 IN SCHOLARSHIPS IN 2018
to students enrolled in a program related to water resources.

The Richard A. Herbert Memorial Scholarship honors Richard A. Herbert —
a champion for water resources education — who passed away in 1994.
The generosity of AWRA members and their commitment to his vision, have allowed the scholarship fund to grow exponentially.

Submittal Information
Application packets for 2018-2019 should be submitted to info@awra.org. Applications must be submitted electronically as one document and limited to 5mb in size to ensure delivery. Applications are due April 23, 2018. Please call 540-687-8390 or email info@awra.org with any questions concerning the submittal process.

Apply For Scholarship

Join AWRA as a student