In Jharkhand, Using an Old Technique for Sustainable Water

May 24, 2017
The Indian state of Jharkhand has plentiful rainfall, but most of that water runs off before it can be put to use by farmers, who struggle to make a living. To help improve irrigation and crop productivity, the Centers for International Projects Trust and Ranchi’s Birsa Agricultural University turned to a simple traditional technology, "dobhas," small ponds that can store rainwater for months at a time. Read More

Project Uses Satellites for Rapid Assessment of Flood Response Costs

May 22, 2017
Overall global losses from natural disasters such as floods, landslides or earthquakes amount to about $300 billion annually. A rapid and early response is key to immediately address the loss of human life, property, infrastructure and business activity. Read More

The Glaciers Are Going

May 5, 2017
Glaciers around the world have retreated at unprecedented rates and some have disappeared altogether. The melting of glaciers will affect drinking water supplies, water needed to grow food and supply energy, as well as global sea levels. Read More

To Ease Mexico City’s Water Woes, Look up, Study Suggests

May 1, 2017
For Mexico City’s biggest businesses and its poorest neighborhoods, rainwater harvesting could help address an enormous water crisis plaguing the city, a recent Columbia Water Center study found. 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

An Ancient Tool Holds Promise for Modern Water Problems

March 22, 2017
The potential effectiveness of harvesting rainwater to bolster water supply and reduce potentially polluting runoff varies greatly from place to place, even within a particular city or neighborhood. Now researchers at the Columbia Water Center have developed a tool to assess the potential of rainwater harvesting throughout the United States. Read More

Grasslands More Sensitive to Dryness than Rainfall, Study Says

March 9, 2017
A new study shows that dryness of the atmosphere affects U.S. grassland productivity more than rainfall does. The findings could have important implications for predicting how plants will respond to warming climate conditions. Read More

Oroville Dam Crisis is a Call to Action on U.S. Water Infrastructure

February 20, 2017
Columbia Water Center director Upmanu Lall suggests that we see the Oroville crisis as a call to action to evaluate and address the challenges facing the nation’s dam infrastructure. Read More

Tapping into Ocean Power

February 15, 2017
The oceans of the world are a vast unexploited source of clean, reliable and predictable renewable energy. Could this energy help replace fossil fuels and be a solution to climate change? Read More

Sampling on the Ganges and Brahmaputra Rivers

February 5, 2017
The final phase of our revolves around visiting chars, sandy river islands, on the Ganges and Brahmaputra River. Chris and Dan are making measurements of soil salinity and moisture and spectra of the soil reflectance, while Liz and I collected samples for OSL dating and understanding the OSL properties of the river sediments here. This entails a mixture of driving around the country and spending time on small country boats and walking around the chars. Read More
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