The Saving Water, Saving Energy blog provides news, resources and analysis on water, energy, and climate change issues with an emphasis on the inextricable connections between water and energy, also know as the Water-Energy Nexus.
Our friends over at American Rivers have just released a new report highlighting eight forward-looking communities that have become more resilient to the impacts of climate change by embracing green infrastructure.
Climate change is already impacting our rivers. In order to minimize these impacts, river and watershed groups need to urge our policy makers to take immediate action. EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson is encouraging environmentalists to forge new partnerships with low-income and minority groups to make sure that the climate crisis is properly addressed.
It looks like water conservation not only works, it works fast. Last week, the City of Los Angeles announced that thanks to their aggressive water conservation efforts, the city has reduced its water consumption by 17% in just one year.
Emily Green wrote a great article called The Dry Garden: Want to save energy? Start by saving water, for the Los Angeles Times last Friday in which she spoke with Peter Gleick from the Pacific Institute about how to address the topic of water and climate change without leaving everyone in the room “utterly depressed and helpless.” Gleick’s answer: “If you want to save energy, save water.”
The U.S. Department of Energy has announced that $300 million in funding will be made available for states to implement programs allowing consumers to turn in old, inefficient appliances for new energy-saving models. Make sure your state allocates the funding to water-using appliances – such as dishwashers and clothes washers – to take advantage of the synergic benefits of saving energy by saving water.
A new paper written by researchers from the United States and Canada features two case studies that clearly describe why the energy embedded in water needs to be incorporated into water supply and wastewater management decisions.
The Sonoma County Water District in California recently announced that their customers will soon be able to receive installation of water- and energy-efficient fixtures in their homes or businesses for free. Perhaps most interesting is that the program will be used to acquire carbon-reduction credits.
Not many people think about energy conservation as a way to boost water supplies but the potential is huge. Roger Duncan, General Manager of Austin Energy in Austin, TX, recently explained to City Council members in the drought-stricken city that they could save upwards of a billion gallons of water by 2020 simply by reducing the electricity received from a local coal-fired power plant by just one-third.
Carol Maas, Innovation and Technology Director for the POLIS Water Sustainability Project based in Victoria, BC, recently sent me a press release about a new coalition of water professionals, university think-tanks, environmental and citizen-based groups who are urging the province of Ontario to adopt a cutting-edge water conservation plan.
On July 14, the Sonoma County Water Agency notified its customers that storage levels in its tanks are dropping due to spiking water demand, and that additional water pumping to make-up for the increased demand would quickly exceed the reliable capacity of the water system. In a recent opinion piece, Mike Reilly, who served 12 years on Sonoma County's Board of Supervisors, explains that reducing peak demand isn't the only reason to conserve: "There is one other compelling reason for water conservation that has not been discussed. Saving water also means significantly reducing greenhouse gas emissions."
Denver Water and Xcel Energy have teamed up with NAIOP Colorado, the Commercial Real Estate Development Association, in pursuit of a common goal: to make office buildings, warehouses and other commercial real estate in the Denver-metro area more energy and water-efficient. This innovative new partnership between three of Colorado's leading organizations serves as an example of how water and energy utilities can team up and leverage their resources for effective water and energy conservation.
A recent article written for Reuters News Service describes the massive potential to save water--and energy--through smart irrigation controllers, such as weather- or sensor-based systems that reduce over watering.
Professors at the University of Arizona's department of civil engineering and engineering mechanics were recently awarded a $2 million grant from the National Science Foundation to research energy water reuse and supply systems. In addition to studying the feasibility of reusing wastewater to me growing water demands in arid regions, the researchers intend to develop a computer model for water managers who are grappling with the problem of using less energy while meeting increased demand for water.