Two factors that contributed to the poisoning of tens of thousands of Washington, D.C., residents through their drinking water in the early 2000s—lead pipes and a disinfectant called chloramine—continue to coexist in countless water systems nationwide, including in the Bay Area. But not to worry, says UC Berkeley water expert and engineering professor David Sedlak; they’re safe when properly managed, which happens in the vast majority of public water systems.
The decision by Gov. Jerry Brown’s administration to lift mandatory water restrictions is good news for any Californian who likes to raise petunias and zucchini and take showers lasting longer than three minutes. But is it really a good idea? After all, last winter’s greatly hyped and much-anticipated El Niño turned out to be something of a bust.
Posted on May 27, 2016 - 2:52pm
It’s the kind of subject that lends itself to the lowest of low humor, but we’ll try to resist that temptation. Because at bottom (sorry), it’s among the most serious of subjects, speaking as it does to basic survival. We’re talking about water (again), of course. But more specifically, we’re talking about blackwater: Sewage. And even more particularly, recycling sewage, treating it to the potable level and–gulp–drinking it again.
Posted on June 11, 2015 - 5:08pm
As the drought deepens and associated angst spikes, a variety of solutions have been bruited about our parched state: New reservoirs. Rigorous (even draconian) conservation. Recycling. Hauling icebergs from Alaska. Fervent prayer.
And marine desalinization.
Posted on June 3, 2015 - 4:00pm