SAN PABLO - Water here is so scarce that farmers habitually gaze up at the mountains surrounding their valley - where over-pumping from aquifers may force 80,000 irrigated acres out of production.
It’ll take at least a decade before Cotter Corp.’s contaminated Colorado
uranium mill is cleaned up under a new deal aimed at accelerating work
at the site.
The agreement settles a long-running dispute about the
surety fund - state officials have estimated cleanup would cost as much
as $40 million - and also sets Cotter’s timetable and penalties if
deadlines aren’t met.
A watchdog group criticized the deal, saying plans
were revised with little public input.
Workers at Suncor Energy ’s oil refinery north of Denver - nearly all 500 - have had their blood tested for benzene as Suncor excavates pipeline to deal with tainted tap water and tries to contain contamination of Sand Creek.
Nobody knows how long drinking water at the Suncor refinery has contained benzene. Results of blood tests were kept confidential.
South-metro leaders and a growing number of fishermen are pushing to let the South Platte be more of a natural river as it flows down from the mountains through the Denver area.
Denver metro planners who often don’t see eye to eye on land-use issues are trying to create a green ring of public open space flanking the metro area’s two-thirds-completed high- speed beltway.
BOULDER - The U.S. government is deploying Colorado scientists to lead a $5.4 million effort to gauge the impact of shrinking Himalayan glaciers on water supplies across Asia.
The question is whether rivers that sustain more than 2 billion people are fed primarily by water from rainfall, by seasonal snowmelt or by the glaciers that are vulnerable to climate change.
A significant drop in water supply could lead to food shortages and, according to U.S. Agency for International Development officials, create new conflicts in already volatile areas.
The high-mountain glaciers, seen as water towers for Asia, have been shrinking at a rate of 0.5 percent a year - similar to glaciers in South America’s Andes and the European Alps . As Asia’s glaciers recede, Chinese and Indian governments are moving to control headwaters with at least 19 proposed dam projects, adding to eight or so existing major dams.
U.S. intelligence agencies were among those interested in enlisting University of Colorado senior research scientist Richard Armstrong and geography professor Mark Williams.
Cotter Corp. has thrown in the towel on uranium processing at its Colorado uranium mill and moved toward cleanup of pollution at the site near the Arkansas River southeast of Cañon City.
State health regulators on Thursday issued orders formalizing cleanup work already in progress to stanch the the flow of hazardous liquid seeping into Sand Creek and addressing newly identified contamination spreading underground from Suncor Energy’s refinery to an adjacent Metro Wastewater plant.
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency cleanup coordinators determined that the black goo oozing from the bank of Sand Creek north of downtown Denver is “a gasoline-like material” that contains cancer-causing benzene.
Federal environmental officials have taken charge of a continuing toxic leak into Sand Creek and the South Platte River north of downtown Denver, trying to stop oily black goo from fouling northeastern Colorado’s primary source of water.
Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment officials have known about hazardous leakages in the area for at least a month, documents show. And for a week, toxic vapors at the nearby Metro Wastewater Reclamation District facility have forced workers to wear respirators.
FORT COLLINS - As scientist Diana Wall and her team peered at them through microscopes, the trapped tiny creatures feasted on morsels in dirt.
A nematode’s innards bulged full of carbon and nitrogen. A water bear pulsed, devouring algae. Spiderlike mites and springtails jumped - the underground equivalents of zebras and giraffes.
Exploits of these subsurface organisms are a growing preoccupation for scientists because the ecological oomph of soils that people depend on for food, health and water is eroding. Understanding how the tiny creatures work may help restore soil fertility and stop deadly sicknesses.