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University of Arizona President Robert C. Robbins interviews Robert Glennon on The Future of Water in Arizona, June 14, 2024.

June 14, 2024

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Featured articles from Robert Glennon

Evaporated Water

Smart Water Magazine

“This is a case about evaporated water.” Thus began U.S. Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh’s opinion for the Court in Texas v. New Mexico, decided on December 14, 2020. Wait a minute!  The Supreme Court is a very busy Court with complicated, serious legal problems to resolve, yet they heard one about something that no longer exists?

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John Wesley Powell, Great Explorer of the American West

Scientific American
June 26, 2019

Just over 150 years ago, on May 24, 1869, John Wesley Powell set off from Green River in the Wyoming Territory, into the “great unknown,” the first known descent of the Colorado River through the Grand Canyon.

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Three Authors See Water, Water Everywhere, for Better and Worse

NY Times
March 30, 2018

The most pernicious consequence of global warming is the rise of sea levels, which threatens cities around the world and has already triggered what may become the largest mass migration in human history.

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Water is cheap…should it be?

NPR, The Indicator from Planet Money
September 1, 2021
All this week, we are talking about water or the lack of it. The climate crisis means intense heat, drier weather and drought, and today at least one uncontained fire, which is causing evacuations in Lake Tahoe. And California and Nevada have both declared a state of emergency. But despite these extreme consequences from water scarcity, often, we do not seem to treat this incredibly valuable commodity with the respect it deserves.  Read more

As Colorado River Basin states confront water shortages, it’s time to focus on reducing demand

The Conversation
August 16, 2021
The U.S. government announced its first-ever water shortage declaration for the Colorado River on Aug. 16, 2021, triggering future cuts in the amount of water states will be allowed to draw from the river. The Tier 1 shortage declaration followed the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation’s forecast that the water in Lake Mead – the largest reservoir in the U.S., located on the Arizona-Nevada border – will drop below an elevation of 1,075 feet above sea level, leaving less than 40% of its capacity, by the end of 2021.  Read more

Interstate water wars are heating up along with the climate

The Conversation
April 19, 2021
Interstate water disputes are as American as apple pie. States often think a neighboring state is using more than its fair share from a river, lake or aquifer that crosses borders. Currently the U.S. Supreme Court has on its docket a case between Texas, New Mexico and Colorado and another one between Mississippi and Tennessee. The court has already ruled this term on cases pitting Texas against New Mexico and Florida against Georgia.  Read more

Is Romaine Safe to Eat?

The Water Report
January 15, 2021
We were delighted as our 12-year-old grandson ordered a Caesar salad when we were having dinner at a pizza place. Vegetables! However, the dinner was December 22, 2019, shortly after CDC and FDA issued yet another warning against eating romaine from Salinas, California. I asked the server where the romaine came from. He didn’t know but went in the back to inquire. He returned and said, “Salinas.”  Read more

Looser standards for showerheads could send a lot of water and money down the drain

The Conversation
September 2, 2020
For more than 25 years, Congress has directed U.S. government agencies to set energy and water efficiency standards for many new products. These measures conserve resources and save consumers a lot of money. Until recently, they had bipartisan support. But President Trump has turned efficiency standards into symbols of intrusive government. His administration has opposed many of these rules, including standards for light bulbs, commercial boilers, portable air conditioners and low-flow toilets. His latest target: showerheads.  Read more

Why I Am Optimistic About Water

July 20, 2020
The deterioration of our water infrastructure did not begin with the current inhabitant of the White House, and achieving these ambitious goals will require moral courage and the political will to forge bipartisan consensus. I have not despaired and there is good news to report. To be sure, greed and stupidity often control the day, but people of good will and sound judgment have made considerable inroads and reforms.  Read more