Fri August 8, 2014

If A Water Main Isn't Broke, Don't Fix It (For 300 Years?)

Originally published on Sun August 10, 2014 4:22 pm

The UCLA campus was flooded last week after a 30-inch water main broke. The city of Los Angeles is on a 300-year replacement plan for its water system.
Mike Meadows AP

Most of us don't really give it a second thought: We turn on the tap, pour a glass of water and drink it down. But the U.S. has experienced a number of water-related problems this year, from the toxic algae bloom on Lake Erie to a massive water main break in Los Angeles that spilled 20 million gallons of water, and a chemical spill into West Virginia's Elk River that fouled the drinking water supply.

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Fri August 8, 2014

Butterfly Shifts From Shabby To Chic With A Tweak Of The Scales

Originally published on Fri August 8, 2014 4:57 pm

By selecting for a slightly different shape in the scales of the wing, scientists bred a population of brown butterflies into blueness.
Antonia Monteiro Yale University

Explore the soft, smooth-looking surface of a butterfly wing through an electron microscope and you'll see it's actually covered in rugged, textured scales that overlap like shingles on a roof.

Zoom in even more, to the nano scale, and you'll find a labyrinth of hard, transparent architecture — pillars, ridges, archways, and sometimes even spiral loop-the-loops, all made of chitin, the same material that makes crab shells so tough.

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Thu August 7, 2014

Colorado Regulators Drop Lawsuit Against Longmont Drilling Rules

A drill site in Frederick abuts a residential neighborhood, August 2013. The growth of drilling near Front Range population centers has led cities and counties to pass stricter controls on the activity..
Jim Hill KUNC


Wed August 6, 2014

Denver Water Wants You To Conserve, Unless You’re 'That Guy'

Denver Water's summer water conservation ad campaign features water wasters you don't want to imitate.
Denver Water

You don't want to be a clueless hipster. Or a stuck-up jerk with a Pomeranian. Or a brah who doesn't give a damn - about water, that is.

At least, that's the sentiment Denver Water is trying to tap in its latest ad campaign.

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Mon August 4, 2014

Colorado’s Local Control Of Oil And Gas Is A Question Of Degrees

A drill site in Frederick abuts a residential neighborhood, August 2013. The growth of drilling near Front Range population centers has prompted bans and calls for more local control of drilling.
Jim Hill KUNC

When the city of Longmont's fracking ban was struck down by a Boulder judge, it could have been seen as a setback for those seeking to assert local control over surging oil and gas development along Colorado's populous Front Range.

A longer view of the matter, though, shows that local communities all across the state have exerted control over oil and gas within their boundaries for decades.

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