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Report Envisions Solutions to California’s Water Crisis

droughtInnovations in science, technology and management are seen as key components of any sustainable solution to California’s water crisis.

The California Council on Science and Technology (CCST) released a report that calls for a system management approach that would rely on currently available and new science and technology, yielding greater efficiencies and opening new sources of supply.

This would complement California’s already significant investment in large-scale engineering solutions to meet water needs through dams, canals and pipelines.

The report, California Water – Achieving a Sustainable California Water Future through Innovations in Science and Technology, points out technologies that can be introduced or more widely applied within the next five to 10 years. The report outlines near-term actions, which include:

  • Developing and implementing a comprehensive integrated statewide water information system, allowing a near real-time view of the status of the hydrologic cycle, elements, supplies and uses;
  • Encouraging the metering of all water usage, for agriculture, urban and industrial use;
  • Expanding use of high-efficiency plumbing, appliances, low-water use landscapes, and self-repairing materials for distribution systems;
  • Identifying high-impact actions to restore and protect watersheds functions;
  • Increasing storm water capture and groundwater recharge; and
  • Increasing nitrate reduction technologies for drinking water and desalination technologies for brackish water and groundwater cleanup.

The report also acknowledges barriers to implementation, driven largely by the heavily fragmented nature of current water resource management in California and the lack of agreement on an overall strategic plan for the management of water in the state. Another barrier is insufficient funding as well as arcan

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