Tracing Denver’s water history – News on TAP

Interactive timeline travels back in time before Denver Water was even born 100 years ago.

Source: Tracing Denver’s water history – News on TAP

Ireland votes to divest from fossil fuels #ActOnClimate #KeepItInTheGround

By Jeff Schmaltz – NASA Earth Observatory, Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=14627545

From The Guardian (Damian Carrington):

Bill passed by parliament means more than €300m shares in coal, oil, peat and gas will be sold ‘as soon as practicable’

The Republic of Ireland will become the world’s first country to sell off its investments in fossil fuel companies, after a bill was passed with all-party support in the lower house of parliament.

The state’s €8bn national investment fund will be required to sell all investments in coal, oil, gas and peat “as soon as is practicable”, which is expected to mean within five years. Norway’s huge $1tn sovereign wealth fund has only partially divested from fossil fuels, targeting some coal companies, and is still considering its oil and gas holdings.

The fossil fuel divestment movement has grown rapidly and trillions of dollars of investment funds have been divested, including large pension funds and insurers, cities such as New York, churches and universities.

Supporters of divestment say existing fossil fuel resources are already far greater than can be burned without causing catastrophic climate change and that exploring and producing more fossil fuels is therefore morally wrong and economically risky… [ed. emphasis mine]

The Irish fossil fuel divestment bill was passed in the lower house of parliament on Thursday and it is expected to pass rapidly through the upper house, meaning it could become law before the end of the year. The Irish state investment fund holds more than €300m in fossil fuel investments in 150 companies.

“The [divestment] movement is highlighting the need to stop investing in the expansion of a global industry which must be brought into managed decline if catastrophic climate change is to be averted,” said Thomas Pringle, the independent member of parliament who introduced the bill. “Ireland by divesting is sending a clear message that the Irish public and the international community are ready to think and act beyond narrow short term vested interests.”

Éamonn Meehan, executive director of international development charity Trócaire, said: “Today the Oireachtas [Irish parliament] has sent a powerful signal to the international community about the need to speed up the phase-out of fossil fuels.”

[…]

The bill defines a fossil fuel company as a company that derives 20% or more of its revenue from exploration, extraction or refinement of fossil fuels. The bill also allows investment in Irish fossil fuel companies if this funds their move away from fossil fuels.

Gerry Liston at Global Legal Action Network, who drafted the bill, said: “Governments will not meet their obligations under the Paris agreement on climate change if they continue to financially sustain the fossil fuel industry. Countries the world over must now urgently follow Ireland’s lead and divest from fossil fuels.”

#Drought news: Drought and dryness expands from SW to NE in #Colorado

Click here to go to the US Drought Monitor website. Here’s an excerpt:

Summary

An active summer pattern continued over the central and northern Plains and into the upper Midwest, with several areas seeing well above normal precipitation associated with thunderstorms. Along the Gulf Coast from Texas to Florida, precipitation was plentiful and widespread as ample moisture continued to be transported into the region. The precipitation along the Gulf also helped to keep temperatures 1-3 degrees cooler than normal for this time of year. Some monsoon activity started up in the Southwest with some scattered precipitation while most of the rest of the West remained warm and dry with an increase in fire danger and active fires throughout the region…

High Plains

An active thunderstorm pattern helped to bring ample precipitation to North Dakota, northern South Dakota, central and eastern Nebraska, and portions of western Kansas. The precipitation last week along with recent rains has allowed for improvements in the Dakotas. Severe drought was eliminated from both North and South Dakota while abnormally dry and moderate drought conditions contracted as well. All of the abnormally dry conditions were eliminated from northwest South Dakota and southwest North Dakota. Eastern Kansas remained dry and severe drought expanded through northeast Kansas and was introduced into southeast Kansas while moderate drought expanded as well. Southwest Kansas had a full category improvement to drought conditions this week as the recent wetness has helped improve drought in this part of the state. In Nebraska, the recent rains in June and early July did not impact all of the state equally and portions of southern Nebraska are starting to show lingering impacts due to dryness going back to the autumn of 2017. This area will need to be monitored closely for development in the coming weeks.

Portions of southeast Colorado improved this week in response to the recent wet pattern, but a new area of exceptional drought was introduced in eastern Colorado as conditions have been rapidly worsening in both the short and long term…

South

The southern portions of the region had the most precipitation as the Gulf Coast continued to be wet and also cooler where the most rain occurred. Areas of eastern Oklahoma and northern Arkansas into northern Mississippi continued to remain dry with some short-term impacts starting to develop. Areas of the Oklahoma and Texas panhandles had improvements this week as the rains continued in the short term and continue to improve the longer-term issues that allowed exceptional drought to be removed in Oklahoma. Severe drought was introduced into northeast Oklahoma, and abnormally dry and moderate drought were also expanded. Moderate drought and abnormally dry conditions were also expanded in northern and central Arkansas and into eastern Mississippi. Improvements were made in southern Louisiana where the most recent rains helped in the short term.

In Texas, conditions improved along the Gulf Coast and Rio Grande regions where exceptional drought was eliminated and extreme drought contracted. Northeast Texas also saw some improvements to moderate and severe drought while abnormally dry conditions were also improved in east Texas into Louisiana. In central Texas, severe drought was introduced and moderate drought expanded, and extreme drought was expanded in northern Texas. West Texas had moderate drought introduced, while other areas had improvements to abnormally dry and moderate drought conditions…

West

Most of the region was dry this week and also recorded temperatures that were 3-6 degrees above normal. Portions of Arizona, New Mexico, southern Utah, and eastern Nevada did see some monsoon activity with scattered precipitation in both states. The hot and dry conditions have allowed for quite a rapid expansion of drought in portions of Utah and Colorado. A full category degradation was introduced over much of eastern Utah and western Colorado, bringing most of the area into exceptional drought conditions. Moderate drought was expanded to most of northwest Colorado while moderate drought and abnormally dry conditions migrated to the east in Colorado to include the Denver area. Moderate drought was introduced into northwest Montana and the panhandle of Idaho while abnormally dry conditions expanded over northeast Washington. Moderate drought and abnormally dry conditions were also expanded over central Oregon and Washington because of the short-term issues combined with dryness through the winter. Abnormally dry conditions were also expanded in southwest Wyoming. Eastern New Mexico did have some improvement where exceptional drought was retracted in the northeast portion of the state, and some improvements were also made along the border with Texas…

Looking Ahead

Over the next 5-7 days, the active precipitation pattern is expected to continue over the Southwest and into southern Colorado. The central Plains and Upper Midwest as well as areas of the Southeast also should see widespread rain. Temperatures will be warmest over the West and Great Basin as well as over most of the Midwest, Mid-Atlantic, and Northeast, with departures 6-9 degrees above normal in the West and 3-6 degrees above normal over the East.

The 6-10 day outlooks show that greatest probabilities of above-normal temperatures are in the West and also from the southern Plains through the Midwest and across much of the East, while much of the central Plains and Alaska have the best probabilities of below-normal temperatures. The greatest probabilities of above-normal precipitation are from the Southwest into the central Plains and into the Mid-Atlantic and New England. The highest probabilities of below-normal precipitation are in the Pacific Northwest and northern Rocky Mountains, the northern Plains and much of Texas.

Eagle turns dirt on second water treatment plant

The water treatment process

From The Vail Daily (Randy Wyrick):

A groundbreaking ceremony saw the first shovels of dirt turned Tuesday, July 10. Excavation should continue through the summer, and concrete should follow in the fall.

Water is scheduled to begin flowing in the fall of 2020…

The town’s current and only water treatment plant runs at 90 percent capacity during peak demand, and some days it’s higher, said Brandy Reitter, Eagle town manager. The new plant will generate as much as 2.5 million gallons of water per day and can be expanded to 5 million gallons per day. It should fulfill the town’s projected growth needs for the next 20 years.

“The town must accommodate its existing users. We also want to accommodate new customers and growth. We cannot consider new development unless we have the water to serve,” Reitter said. “Now is the time. The demands have increased significantly and we cannot wait any longer.”

This new water plant will be on the Eagle River. The current plant is on Brush Creek and is the town’s only source of water.

The town has good water rights on the Eagle River, thanks to tireless work by former town manager Willy Powell, Reitter said.

Bryon McGinnis, Eagle’s public works director, said the second water plant will help the town preserve those hard-won water rights…

A second water plant is also a public safety issue, McGinnis said, pointing out the many wildfires burning around Western Colorado.

The Lake Christine fire near Basalt hit that town’s watershed and strained its system. However, Basalt has a system of wells near the Roaring Fork River, and that second water source kept the water flowing, McGinnis said.

The town of Eagle saved $10 million and used it as a down payment on the new plant.

“Development has, for many years, paid its own way. The town has collected and saved fees to help pay for this,” Reitter said.

The remaining cost will be covered by a low-interest, 20-year loan from a state revolving fund.

Broomfield-based MWH Constructors will build the plant.