About 20 miles outside El Paso, Texas, on a warm afternoon just before the fall harvest, Ramon Tirres Jr. turns his truck between two fields covered in nothing but dirt. Both should be lush with cotton by now, but these 70 acres—a fraction of the nearly 1,000 that Tirres left unplanted this year—are bare. All told, about two-thirds of his cotton fields lie empty.
Tirres has been farming here for 47 years. His pecan trees love the heat, and the soil in the valley where he farms is fertile. But without water, everything falls apart. And the past few years have been especially dry.
Most of the water that Tirres and his neighbors use on their crops arrives via the Rio Grande, a river that snakes from the mountains in southern Colorado through New Mexico and along the Texas-Mexico border. But in years like this one, when there’s not much snow and rain, water is in short supply. Tirres can pump groundwater to make up some of the difference, but it’s expensive, and not all fields have pumps.
A pecan tree on Ramon Tirres’s farm. The limited amount of water allotted to the farm had to be diverted in order to keep a pecan orchard alive during the drought, preventing Tirres from planting a large portion of his fields. JUSTIN HAMEL
Farmers like Tirres have been among those hit hardest by water shortages affecting the region. Their predicament may not seem surprising given where they are: El Paso juts into the Chihuahuan Desert from the western tip of Texas. While annual rainfall across the US averages about 30 inches, El Paso gets under nine.
But El Paso has long been a model for water conservation. The city of 700,000 people has found a way to exist, and even thrive, in the desert. Other cities have for years looked to El Paso for solutions as population growth and climate change stress water resources worldwide.
El Paso has done all the right things—it’s launched programs to persuade residents to use less water and deployed technological systems, including desalination and wastewater recycling, to add to its water resources. The city has invested hundreds of millions of dollars in these adaptations and earned an international reputation for its planning. A former president of the water utility once famously declared El Paso “drought-proof.”
Now, though, even El Paso’s careful plans are being challenged by newly intense droughts. As climate change accelerates and cities everywhere scramble to adapt, it’s clear that technological solutions can improve quality of life in water-stressed places and prevent people from being displaced. However, every new measure comes at a cost, and all of them risk leaving people out. As the pressure ratchets up, El Paso, and places like it, force us to ask just how far adaptation can go.
Like a ring in a bathtub, a stripe in the rock marks the history of water in the Elephant Butte Reservoir, an artificial lake created by the Elephant Butte Dam and tucked into the mountains about two hours’ drive north of El Paso. Snowmelt from mountains in Colorado flows here before being released down the river. Portions are then distributed by the US Bureau of Reclamation to different groups, called irrigation districts, in New Mexico and Texas. Eventually, some makes its way to fields like Tirres’s.
Today the water level is far below the stripe; exposed rocks and the dam rise hundreds of feet on every side. In October, the reservoir held only about 5% of its capacity.
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Elephant Butte has provided the river basin to the south with a mostly steady supply of water for over 100 years. But “you can have a really long stretch of really bad years, like we’re having right now,” says Ben Kalminson, the power plant supervisor at Elephant Butte. When that happens, the reservoir empties out.
Between January 2020 and August 2021, the southwest US endured a historic drought. Only about 17 inches of rain fell across the region; the 20-year average is 24 inches. According to climate models, there’s about a 2% chance of
By: Casey Crownhart
Title: El Paso was “drought-proof.” Climate change is pushing its limits.
Sourced From: www.technologyreview.com/2021/12/20/1041307/el-paso-drought-climate-change/
Published Date: Mon, 20 Dec 2021 10:00:00 +0000
LATAM crypto exchange Bitso and FMF launch NFT of Mexico’s National Team jerseys
Bitso, a leading cryptocurrency platform operating in Latin America, and the Mexican Football Federation (FMF), today announced the joint launch of the first collectible NFT of the Mexico National Team’s jerseys that was acquired in cryptocurrencies.
This morning through their social media platforms, the FMF and Bitso announced the opportunity to acquire the new official National Team fan jerseys ahead of the team’s participation in the 2022 World Cup. In just 20 minutes, the entire collection sold out.
The NFTs of the jerseys have an exclusive design for the metaverse – each is unique on the blockchain and can be resold by its owner in subsequent transactions.
The collection consisted of 100 official physical jerseys, each with a corresponding NFT version of the jersey that fans’ avatars can wear within the Decentraland metaverse. Each physical and NFT jersey set sold for the equivalent of $1,800 MXN in ethers.
“Our mission is to make cryptocurrency useful in the everyday life of Mexicans; we are committed to spreading the technology through innovative opportunities that help people throughout the country familiarize themselves with this new world. We are very excited to offer the incredible, historic opportunity for the fans of our National Team so that through their Bitso account, they can wear the colors of the National Team on and ‘off’ the field in the metaverse.”
– Bárbara González Briseño, General Director of Bitso México
Created by Bitso, the virtual jersey sports the official colors of Mexico and the new National Team shield, characteristics that will make it stand out when users wear it in the virtual world of Decentraland.
The post LATAM crypto exchange Bitso and FMF launch NFT of Mexico’s National Team jerseys appeared first on CryptoNinjas.
Title: LATAM crypto exchange Bitso and FMF launch NFT of Mexico’s National Team jerseys
Sourced From: www.cryptoninjas.net/2022/07/29/latam-crypto-exchange-bitso-and-fmf-launch-nft-of-mexicos-national-team-jerseys/
Published Date: Fri, 29 Jul 2022 15:19:02 +0000
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Long-running crypto exchange EXMO unveils “lively” rebrand amidst growth
EXMO, a crypto exchange platform operating since 2014, announced this week a rebranded visual identity with includes a new logo, brand colors, and design features. This new branding comes as EXMO continues to grow its crypto platform while also seeking to expand its presence in other jurisdictions.
Some new developments underway at EXMO:
Soon, users will be able to earn passive income from EXMO’s new staking platform.Plans to launch an EXMO crypto debit card.Expansion of its services in international markets with the opening of offices in Poland and Lithuania.
EXMO’s new logo
The rationale for the re-brand:
“At EXMO, we have a vision of a world where crypto is in every wallet. Hassle-free. We want to achieve this by making crypto as simple and accessible to everyone as possible. And we know that you already appreciate EXMO for offering user-friendly services and helpful support. Also for the opportunity to trade anywhere and anytime, closing deals in just a few taps. Such important changes required a rethinking of our corporate style, which has long needed a massive upgrade. So today we are introducing a new brand identity for EXMO with a completely new visual concept. We are launching a new logo, brand colors, and design elements. Our key design principles are simplicity, boldness, and a pinch of fun. But most importantly, we have changed our logo. Simple and easily recognizable, it represents the humanity of our brand. The logo stands out due to the wavy letter ‘m’ which symbolizes exchange rate charts and also resembles a spring that will launch you into the crypto world.”
– The EXMO Team regarding the re-branding
The post Long-running crypto exchange EXMO unveils “lively” rebrand amidst growth appeared first on CryptoNinjas.
Title: Long-running crypto exchange EXMO unveils “lively” rebrand amidst growth
Sourced From: www.cryptoninjas.net/2022/07/26/long-running-crypto-exchange-exmo-unveils-lively-rebrand-amidst-growth/
Published Date: Tue, 26 Jul 2022 08:10:38 +0000
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Stitching together the grid will save lives as extreme weather worsens
The blistering heat waves that set temperature records across much of the US in recent days have strained electricity systems, threatening to knock out power in vulnerable regions of the country.
The electricity has largely stayed online so far this summer, but there have been scattered problems and close calls already.
Heavy use of energy-sucking air-conditioners is the biggest problem. But intense heat can also reduce the output of power plants, blow transformers, and force power lines to sag. Severe droughts across large parts of the country have also significantly reduced the availability of hydroelectric power, according to the North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC).
It’s unlikely to get better soon. A number of grid operators may struggle to meet peak summer demand, creating the risk of rolling blackouts, the NERC report notes.
The nation’s isolated and antiquated grids are in desperate need of upgrades to keep the lights, heat, and air-conditioning on in the midst of extreme weather events that climate change is making more common, severe, and dangerous. One clear way to ease many of these issues is to more tightly integrate the country’s regional grids, stitching them together with more long-range transmission lines.
If electricity generated in one area can be more easily shared across much wider regions, power can simply flow to where it’s needed at those moments when customers crank up air-conditioners en masse, or when power plants or fuel supply lines fail amid soaring temperatures, wildfires, hurricanes, or other events, says Liza Reed, a research manager focused on transmission at the Niskanen Center, a Washington, DC, think tank.
The problem is it’s proved difficult to build more long-range transmission and grid interconnections for a variety of reasons, including the permitting challenges of erecting wires through private and public lands across cities, counties, and states and the reluctance of local authorities to forfeit control or submit to greater federal oversight.
The case of Texas
The unreliability of the US grid is not a new problem. Severe heat and winter storms have repeatedly exposed the frailty of electricity systems in recent years, leaving thousands to millions of people without power as temperatures spiked or plunged.
One of the fundamental challenges is that the grids today are highly fragmented. There are three main electricity networks within the US: the Eastern Grid, the Western Grid, and the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT). But there are numerous regional transmission organizations within those first two systems, including the California Independent System Operator, Southwest Power Pool, PJM Interconnection, New York ISO, and more.
These grids form a complex web of networks operating under different regulators, rules and market structures, and often with limited connections between them.
A variety of regional transmission organizations oversee different parts of the nation’s aging and fragmented grids, which operate under different rules and with often limited connections between them.
ERCOT is especially isolated, in part because of the desire among local politicians, citizens, and power companies to avoid added competition, the hassle of following other states’ rules, and oversight from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC). But the state offers a case study in why that can be a serious problem amid increasingly harsh climate conditions, Reed says.
The Texas grid operator pleaded with customers several times earlier this month to cut electricity use as blistering summer temperatures created demand surges that threatened to outstrip supply and require rolling blackouts. Low wind conditions, cloud cover, and outages at fossil-fuel power plants added to the strains.
Shutting off the electricity needed to run air-conditioning in triple-digit temperatures
By: James Temple
Title: Stitching together the grid will save lives as extreme weather worsens
Sourced From: www.technologyreview.com/2022/07/28/1056483/stitching-together-the-grid-will-save-lives-as-extreme-weather-worsens/
Published Date: Thu, 28 Jul 2022 08:00:00 +0000
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