Arizona Sustainability News

Climate change could make rare heatwaves commonplace
During a nine-day heat wave in the Pacific Northwest in June 2021, temperatures rose a staggering 18 to 54 degrees above average. A new study describes the larger-scale forces at work — some of which could affect the Southwest.
ASU group proposes sustainable jet fuel from plants
Like long-distance transport and shipping, the aviation industry cannot easily switch to low-carbon energy sources, and large, electrified aircraft are not currently feasible. But an eight-year study at ASU has produced a sustainable alternative: plant-based jet fuel.
Nov. 17, 2022
Groundwater is critical to rural Arizona — but theres a struggle to regulate it
The dwindling water levels of Lake Powell and Lake Mead have gotten a lot of attention in the midst of Arizona’s historic drought. But those aren’t the only measures causing alarm.
More Arizona water news
Nov. 10, 2022
Fire destroyed countless saguaros. A program is trying to bring them back
The 2020 Bush Fire burned nearly 200,000 acres of land, and with it, countless saguaro cactuses. But a program at Scottsdale Community College is working on bringing saguaros back to the area.
Nov. 14, 2022
EVERY LAST DROP: Is drought in the Southwest the new normal?
Two decades of the Southwest megadrought have marked Arizona’s driest period in 1,200 years. With climate change in full swing, greenhouse emissions well above pledged targets and the state facing cutbacks to its share of dwindling Colorado River water, many wonder: Is drought the new normal?
More Arizona water news
Nov. 10, 2022
ADOT to lay out plans for electric vehicle charging stations on AZ freeways
On Wednesday, the Arizona Department of Transportation will outline its plan to build a network of electric vehicle charging stations.
Nov. 9, 2022
Evidence behind sustainable food technologies lacking
The current COP27 conference includes dialogues on how food choices affect climate change, and venture capital is flowing into the eco-friendly food sector. But new research suggests there’s little evidence behind the sustainability claims of many food technologies.
Nov. 9, 2022
Beaver dams may help offset water contamination under climate change
Climate change is making the American West hotter and drier, shifting the timing and strength of moisture extremes. But research suggests beaver dams could more than offset the harmful effects such changes have on water quality.
Nov. 8, 2022
Hermosillo’s ‘Green Hackathon’ seeks sustainable solutions for businesses
Next week, entrepreneurs in the Sonoran capital Hermosillo will be developing sustainable solutions for businesses in the city looking to reduce their environmental impact.
Nov. 8, 2022
Great American Seed Up gets gardeners into seed saving
The Great American Seed Up is Nov. 4-5 in Phoenix, and co-founder Belle Starr says there are more than 80 different varieties of bulk seed you can pick up there — including fruits, veggies and flowers.
Nov. 3, 2022
8 school districts get federal funding to switch to electric buses
Several Arizona school districts are switching from diesel school buses to electric ones thanks to federal funds granted through the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law.
Oct. 28, 2022
Report: Earth’s vital signs signal a ‘code red’
Five years ago, more than 15,000 experts signed the “World Scientists' Warning to Humanity: A Second Notice” regarding the imminent dangers posed by climate change. The latest update to that research says the Earth’s vital signs have reached “code red.”
Oct. 27, 2022
How a former landfill will become a food innovation hub
Construction will soon get underway for a food innovation center at the site of a former landfill in south Phoenix.
Oct. 25, 2022
AZ Wildlife Federation op-ed spotlights threatened water protections
As Colorado River cutbacks put a premium on water, a U.S. Supreme Court case will soon decide the fate of the Clean Water Act. The Arizona Wildlife Federation has issued an op-ed arguing for its protection.
Oct. 21, 2022
Western wildfires drive stronger storms in central U.S.
Over the past few decades, wildfires in the western U.S. have grown more frequent and burned more land. A new paper shows how the impacts of those fires are felt elsewhere in the county.
Oct. 19, 2022
Gila River Indian Community announces plan to conserve more water
The Gila River Indian Community in Arizona announced plans to conserve a significant amount of its water supplies. The savings will be used to prop up water levels in Lake Mead.
Oct. 19, 2022
Study suggests source for Salton Sea’s decline
In the past 25 years, California’s most polluted inland lake has grown more polluted and hazardous as it has lost one-third of its water. A new paper suggests that warming trends and water diversion might not be the cause.
More science and innovation news
Oct. 12, 2022
Long wait times, short funds imperil endangered species
This month, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service released its plan to address illegal killings of the endangered Mexican gray wolf, even as conservation groups announced they would sue the agency over its handling of the species. New research examines why the protection process often fails.
Oct. 13, 2022
More than half of U.S. bird species in decline
A report by 33 leading science and conservation organizations and agencies shows more than half of U.S. bird species are declining. Hardest hit are grassland birds, which are down 34% since 1970.
Oct. 13, 2022
Tonto National Forest undergoing 2 restoration projects
Two restoration projects are underway in the Tonto National Forest. The treatments are being done to mitigate the results of a wildfire that occurred over 30 years ago.
Oct. 8, 2022
$200K EPA study will test air, water at Cocopah Head Start facility
Researchers from Northern Arizona University and University of Arizona are collaborating with the Cocopah Indian Tribe to assess environmental health issues at a Head Start and day care facility. Concerns include possible air and water pollution from surrounding areas.
Oct. 6, 2022