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ISWS - Useful Water Links
Research or Reports
Fracking controversy: using water, sand and chemicals to extract natural gas from shale
The turmoil in oil-producing nations is triggering turmoil at home as rising oil prices force Americans to pay more at the pump. Meanwhile there's a growing industry that's promising jobs and access to cheaper energy resources on American soil, but it's not without its controversy.
GAO Report on Climate Change Carbon Offset
The report provides information on key challenges in assessing the quality of different types of offsets and options for addressing key challenges associated with offset quality. This information would be important if the US adopts a program to limit emissions. GAO reviewed relevant literature and interviewed selected experts and stakeholders such as project developers, verifiers, and program officials. However, the report contains no recommendations.
GAO Study of the Energy-Water Nexus
GAO was asked to describe what is known about (1) the energy needed for the urban water lifecycle and (2) technologies and approaches that could lessen the energy needed for the lifecycle and barriers that exist to their adoption. To address these issues, GAO reviewed scientific studies, government-sponsored research, and other reports and interviewed specialists from a variety of organizations, including drinking water and wastewater utilities; federal, state, and local government offices responsible for water or energy; and relevant nonprofit groups, about the energy needed to move, use, and treat water.
Is Globalization Sustainable?
This study links the Maastricht Globalization Index with Sustainability Indices to analyze whether more globalized countries are doing better in terms of sustainable development and its dimensions.
Key trends in water resources research uncovered
A new report reveals the increasingly international and strategic nature of water resources research.
Mediterranean Drought and Water Scarcity
Models of preparedness plans were devised, ready to be customized according to local or regional natural and socio-economic conditions. Guidelines for facing water shortages and road maps for effective participation of stakeholders, administration officers, institutions and the public in decision making, were formulated. Simplification of the multiple character of droughts (severity, areal extent, duration, etc.) led to a uni-dimensional approach, which can be easily understood and implemented by people of different backgrounds and disciplines.
More on the Energy-Water Nexus
Water and energy systems constitute the foundation for modern infrastructures around the world. Water and energy infrastructure are interdependent. In the U.S., energy production and power generation systems are major users of freshwater resources besides agriculture. The major goal of this report is to show dependency of energy production and power generation systems on water availability.
Natural gas from shale contributes to global warming, researchers find
Natual gas extracted from shale formations has a greater greenhouse gas footprint than conventional gas, oil, and coal over a 20 year period. This calls into question the logic of its use as a climate-friendly alternative to fossil fuels, according to researchers.
Peak Water Limits to Freshwater Withdrawal and Use
This paper presents a detailed assessment and definition of three concepts of “peak water”: peak renewable water, peak nonrenewable water, and peak ecological water. These concepts can help hydrologists, water managers, policy makers, and the public understand and manage different water systems more effectively and sustainably.
Report: Altered Streamflows Leading to Degraded River Ecosystems across U.S.
This USGS assessment provides the most geographically extensive analysis to date of streamflow alteration. Findings show that the amount of water flowing in streams and rivers has been significantly altered from land and water management in nearly 90 percent of waters that were assessed in the nationwide USGS study.
Results of the EESI Brief on Briefing on Hydraulic Fracturing
On June 21st, the Environmental and Energy Study Institute (EESI) held a briefing on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC about the water impacts of hydraulic fracturing of shale gas deposits. Speakers included representatives from both domestic and international organizations. The full set of results, with audio and video, can be found at the link above.
Stockholm International Water Institute 2012 Water Report - Feeding a Thirsty World
This report provides input into the discussions at the 2012 World Water Week in Stockholm, which is held under the theme of Water and Food Security. It features brief overviews of new knowledge and approaches on emerging and persistent challenges to achieve water and food security in the 21st century.
Sustainability and the U.S. EPA
The report presents a framework for incorporating sustainability into EPA principles and decision making. It intended to help the agency better assess the social, environmental, and economic impacts of options as it makes decisions.
Sustainable Water Resources Management Volume 3: Case Studies on New Water Paradigm
The Water Environment Research Foundation (WERF), in cooperation with the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI), has completed a research effort to help communities overcome their challenges. The project, which considered the real-life challenges of two communities in Tucson/Pima County Arizona and Northern Kentucky, developed a new water management paradigm to support communities’ efforts to organize around and operate under key sustainability principles and practices.
The Century Ahead: Searching for Sustainability
The global future lies before us as a highly uncertain and contested landscape with numerous perils along the way. This study explores possible pathways to sustainability by considering four different scenarios for the twenty-first century.
The Sustainability Challenge: Meeting the Needs of the Water-Energy Nexus
Clean water and on-demand energy are intimately intertwined. Clearly each is necessary for a productive, healthy society. But more importantly, neither can exist without the other. Read this white paper by Snehal Desai, Global Director of Marketing, Dow Water & Process Solutions.
The Water-Energy Nexus, Adding Water to the Energy Agenda
To enhance the quality of discussion and decision-making on the water-energy nexus, this policy paper provides the context needed to evaluate key tradeoffs. We present a comprehensive, user friendly guide to the most credible available data about water consumption per unit of energy produced across a spectrum of traditional and alternative energy technologies. We identify data holes and important issues that merit further attention. We also have created a glossary to help non-experts decipher energy jargon.
UNESCO/IHP’s Contribution to Arab Water Security in the Countries
A new paper is available about Arab water security in the relevant nations. The study reviews freshwater scarcity in the Arab countries, at present and in the future. A number of references to work in the area are included. Key problematic concerns are outlined. Ways of dealing with these problems in part or in total through the framework provided by UNESCO/IHP and related initiatives are highlighted.
USGS Estimates of Domestic Water Use
Estimates for self-supplied domestic withdrawals and the population served for 20 aquifers in the United States for calendar year 2005 are provided in this report. These estimates are based on county-level data for self-supplied domestic groundwater withdrawals and the population served by those withdrawals, as compiled by the National Water Use Information Program, for areas within the extent of the 20 aquifers.
Water Consumption in the Production of Ethanol and Gasoline
Water consumption was analyzed for a number of sources, such as ethanol, conventional fuel feedstocks, oil sands, etc. It appears that water consumption varies not only with region, but also according to the technologies employed, and recovery processes.
Water Footprinting: How to Address Water Use in Life Cycle Assessment?
This paper provides an overview of a broad range of methods developed to enable accounting and impact assessment of water use.
Water Sustainability in Uzbekistan
A recent study on this subject is Schieder, Tina-Maria, Analysis of Water Use and Crop Allocation for the Khorezm Region in Uzbekistan Using an Integrated Hydrologic-Economic Model, Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universitat, Bonn, Germany, 2011
Watershed Sustainability Index Study
This study considers Hydrology, Environment, Life, and water resources Policy (HELP) as the most important elements in the watershed, and combines them with a pressure-state-response approach to develop an overall watershed sustainability index.