NASA satellites can give flood warnings five months in advance – New Research

Researchers from the University of California Irvine (UCI) have carried out a case study of the Missouri River floods in 2011. They have shown that hydrological models that incorporate the total water storage data from NASA’s GRACE mission (Gravity Recovery & Climate Experiment), including data on sub-surface groundwater accumulation, could have increased regional flood warning lead times from two months to as much as five months…

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DWI publishes figures for quality of public water supply

The Drinking Water Inspectorate (DWI) has published its annual report, which details the quality of drinking water in England and Wales for 2013. Figures for Scotland and Northern Ireland will be released later this year. Approximately two million samples were taken in England and Wales with 99.97% meeting or exceeding the strict standards set by the EU’s Drinking Water Directive…

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Climate Change – ASC publishes third annual report

The Adaptation Sub-Committee of the Committee on Climate Change has published the third in a series of annual reports. Its key finding is that inadequate investment in flood protection is stacking up problems for the future, whilst the resilience of water supplies, transport networks, homes and hospitals needs to be improved in order to counter the extreme weather conditions that we have experienced in the UK and that are likely to become more frequent and more severe…

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CIWEM Conference – Natural Flood Management

CIWEM (the Chartered Institution of Water and Environmental Management) has organised a conference on “Natural Flood Management” which will take place in London on the 10th September 2014. This one-day event will be structured around the tour of a fictitious catchment. CIWEM says that the presentations will take delegates on a walk through the catchment, starting at source and finishing at the sea and covering a number of different topics on the way…

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ESI receives a mention in Sunday Telegraph supplement

ESI’s National Groundwater Flood Risk Map features in an article in this month’s Business Reporter, a colour supplement that’s distributed with the Sunday Telegraph. This month’s Business Reporter is entirely devoted to a special report on flood protection…

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EU holds public consultation on drinking water

The EU has launched a public consultation on how to improve the quality and supply of drinking water. The consultation is a response to the Right2Water campaign, which urged the EU in December 2013 to ensure that everyone living in Europe enjoys the right to water and sanitation. It also urged the EU to increase its efforts to achieve universal access to clean and safe drinking water, and to ensure that the supply and management of water resources…

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New “Suitable for Use Levels” will inform human health risk from contaminated land

Land Quality Management Ltd has announced plans to create new “Suitable for Use Levels” (S4UL’s) to replace existing soil quality standards. The new S4UL’s, which will be developed for around 85 substances, are intended to enable a screening assessment of the risks posed by soil quality on development sites. The updated numbers will accommodate recent developments in our understanding of chemical, toxicological and routine exposure to soil-based contaminants…

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Groundwater Contaminants – New Research by BGS

The British Geological Survey has published a report on ‘Emerging Contaminants in Groundwater’. The report is the result of a research project funded by NERC and includes an assessment of Environment Agency monitoring data for less commonly analysed compounds in groundwater. Due to improvements in analytical techniques, previously undetected organic micropollutants are now being observed in water bodies…

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EA Chair speaks of the dangers in cutting flood defence spending

Lord Chris Smith, who stands down this month as Chair of the Environment Agency, has spoken frankly about the Government’s environmental policies in an interview with the Guardian. Lord Smith also delivered a talk last week on “Why the Environment Still Matters”. Organised by the Royal Society of Arts in collaboration with the Environment Agency, the presentation is available as an audio download and as a YouTube video from the RSA website…

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