What lurks beneath: Bay Area’s battle with invasive species in ballast water

CROCKETT — Twenty feet below the water line, in the bilge of a cargo ship unloading raw sugar at the C&H factory, scientists are testing a high-tech weapon in the fight against invasive aquatic species.

A special ballast water treatment system is purifying the water that whooshes through a pump from the Carquinez Strait into the Moku Pahu, a double-hull bulk carrier that ferries raw sugar from Hawaii to California.

The ballast water balances the ship as the system removes organisms thinner than the width of a hair. If the treatment system performs as expected, it will join a handful of emerging technologies that represent the shipping industry’s best hope for meeting a state deadline to remove exotic species from ballast water discharge — or face stiff penalties.

Read more…

Advertisements

New law strengthens Bay Area Water Supply and Conservation Agency

July 19, 2010, 03:30 AM

By Bill Silverfarb Daily Journal staff
 
A new law signed by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger last week strengthens a local water agency’s ability to obtain state grants and implement conversation projects.

The Bay Area Water Supply and Conservation Agency will now be able to compete with other water distributors across the state for bond money related to maintaining infrastructure or conservation efforts.
Assemblyman Ira Ruskin, D-Redwood City, drafted the legislation, in part, because of Proposition 18, an $11 billion water bond measure on the November ballot.

The bond measure provides financing for a variety of projects, such as the construction of new dams, drought relief, habitat restoration, recycling, groundwater improvements, watershed restoration and infrastructure improvements.

Read more…