Water News Archive

Considerations in Adopting Variable Rate Irrigation

Irrigation-the largest user of freshwater in Nebraska and worldwide-can be applied more precisely.

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Floodwater and stormwater can contaminate your water well

Over the past month, images of the flooding associated with Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria have shown the power water can have on people, property and the landscape. The historic and catastrophic storms have left more than a billion dollars in damage in its wake and will have forever reshaped the natural and built environment in southeast Texas, Florida and Puerto Rico.

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Control Broadleaf Weeds in the Fall

Weeds in the lawn will drive us crazy through the whole summer, but don’t forget about them yet. Fall is the best time to treat for broadleaf weeds, even though we don’t notice them as much now because they are done blooming for the year.

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Manure Impact on Erosion and Runoff

This article reviews the value that results from changes to soil’s physical characteristics. Charles Wortmann and Dan Walters, faculty with the University of Nebraska-Lincoln monitored soil erosion, runoff, and phosphorus (P) loss from replicated field plots over three cropping seasons immediately after manure application and four subsequent years when no manure was applied. Significant erosion and runoff benefits were observed for sites receiving animal manures.

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Yeast Additives and Wastewater Lagoons

Additives such as yeast are marketed as a quick and easy way to improve bacterial degradation of the wastewater within a system such as a lagoon.  However, the reality is that none of the yeast additives have been proven to be effective in improving bacterial action within your lagoon.  Additionally, yeast additives have shown to have negative impacts on groundwater quality as well as potential further negative impact on surrounding environmental resources such as vegetation.  If you think the waste treatment is insufficient, consider taking the following two steps:

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Monitoring Nebraska’s Public Beaches - Water Quality and Health Alerts at Your Favorite Lake

Have you ever wondered about the water quality in your favorite lake?  Or perhaps you’ve planned a day at the lake only to see a sign that says “Health Alert” and not known what that meant. 

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Manure Impact on Soil Aggregation

Manure increases formation of larger and more stable soil aggregates. Several benefits result for fields fertilized by manure compared to commercial fertilizer including reduced runoff and soil erosion and increased water infiltration leading to greater drought tolerance.

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Harvest the Rain, It's a Precious Resource

Rainwater harvesting treats rainwater as a resource to be collected rather than a waste product to be conveyed away as quickly as possible. Collected rainwater can be diverted to planted areas such as rain gardens for infiltration or temporarily held in a storage device like a rain barrel or cistern for future use.

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An Overview of Secondary Aquifers in Nebraska

Nebraska is a groundwater-rich state. Nebraska has one primary aquifer, the High Plains Aquifer, and seven secondary aquifers. These secondary aquifers supply water to more than 4000 active wells spread across 30 counties.

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September is National SepticSmart Week

This year’s National SepticSmart Week is September 18-22, 2017. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) uses a week in September each year to focus on improved awareness of proper operation and maintenance of septic systems across the United States. The wastewater of approximately 25 percent of the population of the United States is treated by on-site or individual wastewater systems. In Nebraska, this statistic holds consistent with 25 percent of our state’s population being served by onsite wastewater systems on farms, acreages, suburbs and even some small communities.

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