America’s Water Initiative Blog

News and opinion from the Columbia Water Center about America’s water challenges and opportunities .

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National Climate Assessment: Will U.S. Water Problems Worsen?

November 26, 2018
Upmanu Lall is director of the Columbia Water Center, and the lead author of the new U.S. National Climate Assessment's chapter on water resources. The report paints a dire picture of the nation's climate future. We spoke with Lall about the outlook for water supplies, quality and infrastructure. Read More

First Impressions at Columbia’s Earth Institute

May 23, 2018
It has been a fantastic first few weeks at the Earth Institute in my role as the new director. Reflecting on this early time here, I’d like to highlight something that I found particularly special about the Earth Institute: activities that go beyond Columbia and engage with the real world. Read More

Cape Town Water Crisis Highlights a Worldwide Problem

February 9, 2018
Upmanu Lall, director of the Columbia Water Center, explains South Africa’s water shortage and why places in the U.S. could be at risk, too. Read More

America’s Dam Crisis: Was Oroville Just a Drop in the Bucket?

May 31, 2017
Columbia Water Center experts argue that dam infrastructure issues must be connected to a broader conversation about America’s water resources. Read More

Michelle Ho: In a Land of Plenty, Big Water Problems

May 1, 2017
Michelle Ho grew up in Australia, the driest inhabited continent, with an appreciation for the value of having a clean glass of water to drink. Now, she conducts research for the Columbia Water Center on America’s water systems. Read More

Water Quality Concerns Extend Well Beyond Flint

November 2, 2016
Researchers at the Columbia Water Center have been analyzing trends in drinking water quality violations. A critical lesson is that water quality violations extend well beyond the problem of lead in Flint’s drinking water. Read More

Bridging the Gap Between Science and Policy for Water Security

July 8, 2016
To tackle the challenge of how to effectively educate important stakeholders about ground water in the United States, 11 graduate students from the Earth Institute and School of International and Public Affairs MPA in Environmental Science and Policy program were asked to recommend a strategy to improve scientific literacy among policymakers and investors. Read More

Presidential Politics: Water Supply and Contamination

June 29, 2016
The federal government needs to develop and implement a plan to solve problems with our water infrastructure, pollution and growing scarcity. How will the next president act? Read More

Flint Crisis Opens Door on Water Problems Around U.S.

February 15, 2016
Experts from the Columbia Water Center, the Earth Institute and affiliates talk about the municipal water crisis in Flint, Mich., the nature of the crisis and what it means for America’s Water. Read More

With El Niño, Be Careful What You Wish for

November 16, 2015
In Southern California, a strong El Niño usually signals rain. Given that California is now in the throes of a severe drought, it seems like that should be a good thing, even if it comes with risk of floods. But the reality of climate is more complex and counter-intuitive than it first appears. Read More
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