water

mcdarius, flickr Creative Commons

A Kansas man has been accused of falsifying the water quality reports he was required to send to the Environmental Protection Agency.

Arthur Wolfe, a former water system operator for Garden Plain, allegedly made false statements about the quality of the city's drinking water.

U.S. Geological Survey

Kansas water use is declining, according to a new report from the U.S. Geological survey.

In 2015, Kansas used on average more than 4 billion gallons of water each day. That’s down nearly 25 percent from 1990. Of that, 2.6 billion gallons per day are used for irrigation — a decrease of 36 percent from 1990.

“What we’re doing is great, it’s just not enough of it,” said Kansas Water Office Director Tracy Streeter.

With a litany of alleged ethics controversies swirling at home, embattled Environmental Protection Agency chief Scott Pruitt took the show on the road this week, meeting with farmers in a handful of Midwestern states to talk about his policy agenda.

While Thursday evening's meeting in Lincoln, Neb., was polite, the reception in other states has not been as welcoming, especially when it comes to conversations about his ethanol policies.

Brian Grimmett

New research shows that Kansas is slowly seeing a shift in when it gets its rainfall during the year.

Depending on the region, Kansas typically receives between 35 percent and 41 percent of its annual precipitation during the summer months of June, July and August. But during the past 100 years, that trend is slowly shifting toward the spring.

Flying east to west over Kansas, the land transforms from lush green to desert brown. Rectangular farm plots fill in with emerald circles, the work of center-pivot irrigation.

Outside Garden City, in the middle of one of those circles, Dwane Roth scoops up soil to reveal an inconspicuous PVC pipe. It’s a soil moisture probe that tells Roth exactly how much water his crops need. The device is one of many new technologies designed to help farmers make the most of every drop.

“All that you have to do is open up your app,” said Roth. “It’s going to tell you, you don’t need to irrigate or you’re going to need to apply an inch within  six days.”

usgs.gov

Watershed conservation groups in Wichita made their pitch Wednesday for more money from the federal farm bill.

But for two Kansas congressmen, conservation falls a bit lower on the wishlist.

ARVIN G. BOYER / KANSAS CITY DISTRICT U.S. ARMY CORPS OF ENGINEERS

The Kansas Water Office has received more than $2.5 million from the federal government to help fight harmful algae blooms in the state's largest lake. 

Stephen Koranda / Kansas News Service/File photo

Lt. Gov. Jeff Colyer steps in as governor of Kansas Wednesday afternoon. His predecessor, Republican Gov. Sam Brownback, has been packing up his office in recent days, and is leaving behind a wish list for state lawmakers.

Kansas Department of Health and Environment

The Kansas Department of Health and Environment has released an updated fish consumption advisory list for 2018.

Brian Grimmett / KMUW

Water remains a key priority for members of the Kansas Farm Bureau, who approved their 2018 legislative agenda Tuesday.

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