Aerial view of San Jose, California, 2016.
Silicon Valley brought together natural surroundings, suburban homes and futuristic high-tech work. But industrial pollution betrayed the California dream.
Big Sur coastline.
Ashley Spratt, USFWS
For 50 years California has used laws and policies to manage development along its 1,100-mile coastline and preserve public access to the shore. Climate change will make that task harder.
Research suggests much drinking water contains plastic microparticles.
Sun cream ingredients have been linked to hormonal changes in fish and coral bleaching.
Plastic trash on San Francisco’s Ocean Beach.
A new study shows that anchovies – key food for larger fish – are attracted to plastic trash because it smells like food. This suggests that toxic substances in plastic could move up through food chains.
Six million people in Pennsylvania and neighboring states get their drinking water from the Susquehanna River. Major pollution sources include agriculture, urban development and industry.
Nicholas A. Tonelli
America's drinking water infrastructure is aging and needs billions of dollars in upgrades. Two extension educators urge consumers to monitor their water and have it tested if they suspect problems.
Harmful algae bloom in Lake Erie, Oct. 13, 2011.
NASA Earth Observatory
Nitrogen and phosphorus are polluting US waters, creating algae blooms and dead zones. New research confirms that voluntary steps are failing in the Gulf of Mexico and unlikely to work in Lake Erie.
The Wollangambe River’s canyons are loved by adventurers.
The environmental regulator has stepped in to stop water pollution from an underground coal mine damaging a World Heritage River. Can the mine deliver improvements and will the river recover?
Harmful chemicals in shampoo and other personal products can cause real harm once they’re washed down the drain.
Regulation can't keep up with the thousands of harmful chemicals that wash down our drains. Rather, companies should take responsibility for their products – before they hit the market.
Ingredients from shampoo, sunscreens and other personal care products are turning up in water supplies. Some are toxic or cause hormonal damage to aquatic life, and could threaten human health.
Prairie potholes in South Dakota are important breeding and feeding areas for many types of birds. Under the Clean Water Rule, farmers cannot fill them in or discharge pollutants into them without a permit.
Laura Hubers, USFWS/Flickr
President Trump signed an executive order to roll back the 2015 Clean Water Rule. Two water experts explain why the rule alarms farmers and ranchers concerned about over-regulation.
The bad old days: Public and political support for the EPA was highest when environmental problems like air and water pollution were more obvious than current problems like climate change or endocrine disruptors.
U.S. National Archives
Today's political climate gives new EPA head Scott Pruitt a clear path to seriously cut back EPA enforcement – more than previous administrations.
One primary concern in rural areas: higher temperatures put strain on water and energy sources.
AP Photo/Robert Ray
With little action at the national level on climate change, state and city officials are taking the lead – but by emphasizing local benefits.
A five-story coal ash pile next to the AES electric power plant in Guayama, Puerto Rico.
Low-income residents in Puerto Rico are fighting disposal of toxic coal ash in their communities. They're also campaigning to shift from coal energy – the source of the problem – to solar power.
Siberia's red river reminds us that mining for minerals and metals can still compromise the environment.
News about the sewage and pollution in Guanabara Bay in Rio have caused health concerns among Olympic athletes.
Wastewater treatment systems around the world are hamstrung by outdated tests that don't identify a growing array of pathogens or identify the sources of pollutants.
Detail from a satellite photo of Lake Okeechobee’s algae bloom and the St. Lucie canal into which water was released. Rising water levels from heavy winter rains had water managers worried that water would breach the dike.
Toxic algae blooms like the intense one now fouling Florida’s waterways harm wildlife and people in various ways. They're also on the rise.
Clean water can help to break the link between poor hygiene and eye diseases such as trachoma.
Central Australian Aboriginal Media Association (CAAMA)
As Australia joins a New York summit to discuss the UN Sustainable Development Goals, it still faces questions over whether it is meeting water standards at home.
Harmful algal bloom caused by nutrient pollution, Assateague island National Seashore, MD.
Eric Vance, U.S. EPA/Flickr
Excess nutrients from farm fields cause widespread water pollution across the U.S. Bioreactors -- essentially, ditches filled with wood chips -- are emerging as a way to reduce nutrient pollution.
Mineral processing tailings are pumped into a storage facility. Are there still valuable commodities in this waste?
Identifying mine waste materials as economic resources will help support global demand for critical metals, boosting the mining industry during the downturn. All with environmental benefits.