Water has always been a precious commodity in the western states. Now, with rapid population growth and a drying climate, the way this resource is shared and distributed is becoming more contentious across the region. Freelance journalist Jennifer Oldham talks about the tensions between supply and demand and how to drill down into water rights laws and policies.
Planning & Growth
"A draft update of the state’s $50 billion coastal master plan predicts that 61 new projects to build or protect land, a dozen new levees, and new efforts to elevate, flood-proof or relocate flood-prone homes will reduce annual hurricane storm surge damages by at least $11 billion per year by 2073."
"The “work from home” revolution has been very good for political columnists who like to write shirtless in pajama pants and share too much personal information with their readers. But the phenomenon hasn’t been so great for America’s cities."
"In the increasingly dry Southwest, drought and climate change pose a challenge for developers, who need to find creative ways to provide water supply to new communities."
"A new rule revives an older set of protections for rivers, marshes and waterways, setting aside changes in the Obama and Trump administrations that led to years of legal wrangling." "The Biden administration is working to complete a clean water regulation before a Supreme Court ruling that could complicate the government’s ability to protect wetlands and other waters."
"New data shared with The New York Times reveals stark disparities in how different U.S. households contribute to climate change. Looking at America’s cities, a pattern emerges."
"This year, extreme precipitation deluged communities across the United States — a hallmark risk of a warming climate. Government flood-insurance maps often left residents unprepared for the threat."
"Over the past decade, Americans have migrated to areas of the country with high wildfire risk, indicating that climate disasters are not yet prioritized in moving decisions."
When U.S. communities become unlivable due to climate change impacts, can residents count on government relocation assistance — and are those most in need of help actually getting it? Those questions kickstarted a year-long investigation led by three high-powered journalism organizations. Now they’re sharing their reporting resources toolkit and inviting other journalists to widen the coverage with more local stories.