Category Archives: Analysis

Innovations in Geography – Understanding Communities through GIS

During the 2016 Texas GIS Forum hosted by TNRIS, Dr. Nazgol Bagheri made history as the first female keynote.  Dr. Bagheri is a trained architect and urban planner currently serving as an Assistant Professor in Department of Political Science and … Continue reading

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El Niño to bring rain to California

El Niño, also known as the El Niño Southern Oscillation, is a climatic condition where warm waters in the pacific alter weather patterns across the globe. In the United States, this typically results in dryer than average winters for the … Continue reading

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Happy Labor Day!

Everyone loves a long weekend in late summer. But how did this holiday and treasured American tradition come into being? According to the Department of Labor, “Labor Day, the first Monday in September, is a creation of the labor movement … Continue reading

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EPA releases fracking report for public comment

This week the EPA released its draft assessment of the potential impacts of hydraulic fracturing for oil and gas on drinking water resources. The findings are now available for public comment and expert peer review.

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Supreme Court ruling over Republican River a victory and a loss

This past week the Supreme Court made a decision on the decades long debate over the Republican River mandating that Nebraska pay Kansas $5.5 million in damages for violating the terms of the Republican River Compact. Both states claim this … Continue reading

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Understanding the Texas Drought

With all the rain coming down the last few months, it’s an appropriate time to explore our water system. Anyone living in the central Texas region is aware of the Edwards Aquifer. Maybe you have seen “Recharge Zone” signs while … Continue reading

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Breakthrough in measuring atmospheric aerosols

Scientists from University of Leiden in the Netherlands have created a low-cost, mass producible device that would allow everyday citizens to aid scientists in measuring atmospheric aerosols. Over the course of three days, 8,000 Dutch citizens lifted their smartphones to … Continue reading

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Debate heating up over Denton ban on fracking

Last week residents of Denton, Texas voted to ban hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, within the city limits. This decision drew national attention and seemed to produce equal amounts of enthusiasm and unrest. The next day, officials at the Texas General … Continue reading

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Orphan Sites: Why they exist and how we address them

No, we’re not talking about Orphan Annie here! If you have ever worked on an environmental site assessment (ESA), you may be familiar with the term “orphan site,” or may know it as an “unmapped site.” An orphan site is … Continue reading

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Source of water well contamination in Texas and Pennsylvania identified

The recent US shale boom has spurred economic growth but it has also generated a public debate about whether the hydraulic fracturing methods of extracting the fossil fuels cause water, air, or other environmental degradation. This week, the Proceedings of … Continue reading

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California water table drops; demand for water well data rises

You have probably heard by now: California is facing an extreme drought that is threatening the state’s population, ecosystems, and economic stability. What you may not know is that much of California, at least 40% during non-drought conditions, relies on … Continue reading

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USDOT proposes new regulations for transportation of crude oil

This past week, United States Department of Transportation (USDOT) released a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (pdf) and an Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (pdf) that seeks to improve the safe transportation of large quantities of flammable materials by rail. The … Continue reading

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Most comprehensive groundwater depth map in Texas

Summer is finally here and the longest drought in Texas history is still with us, highlighting our need for some good news about water. In true Environmental Prose style, we thought it would be exciting to open up our database … Continue reading

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Public information concerns over oil shipments

In the wake of recent railway accidents involving crude oil shipments, the United States Department of Transportation issued an emergency order requiring railroad companies to notify state officials of specific route details and oil volume on trains shipping one million … Continue reading

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EPA Proposes 30% reduction in CO2 emissions by 2030

The EPA proposed new regulations this week that aim to lower carbon dioxide emissions from existing coal-fired power plants by 2030. Based on projections from 2005, the EPA seeks to reduce the amount of CO2 produced from these plants by … Continue reading

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