Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Thirsty for relief

$18M in drought funds for Wash. hinges on House vote

HENRY ALVA

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Yakima Herald

The Washington Senate approved an $18 million plan for emergency drought relief last week and the legislation is now awaiting action by the House. Gov. Jay Inslee declared a drought emergency in Central Washington in March and expanded that to a statewide drought earlier this month. But the State Drought Preparedness Account is empty, which limited what the state could do to start helping communities affected by the water shortage.

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Floating wetlands aim to cut phosphorus pollution

Spokesman-Review

A group of Hayden Lake property owners in Idaho have volunteered to have a man-made, floating wetland installed near their dock. The wetlands, made out of plastic membranes, are planted with flowers, sedges and rushes that grow hydroponically, sucking phosphorus and other nutrients out of the lake. The project will test how effective the wetlands are at improving the lake’s water quality.

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Ore. receives $2.5M from USDA for drought relief

The Oregonian

Farmers, ranchers and foresters in Oregon can now apply for federal funding to upgrade equipment and deploy new techniques to conserve water. The USDA is allocating $2.5 million to Oregon for people who rely on agriculture and forests for a living in drought-stricken counties. Oregon is in its fourth year of drought in some parts of the state, and this year is expected to be the worst.

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