Map of all the rivers and streams of the USA.
By Nelson Minar
In his 1878 Report on the Lands of the Arid Region of the United States, John Wesley Powell, the first white explorer of the Colorado River, proposed to organise governance units of the West according to hydrological boundaries - watersheds - instead of state lines.
If Congress had followed his recommendations the Western United States would have been organised following this map.
One year ago the Elwha and Glines Canyon Dams started to be removed as part of the watershed restoration on Washington’s Olympic peninsula. It is the largest dam removal in the history of the USA.
The dam removal will restores ecosystems in the long term, it will open up the river to migrating fish for the first time in 100 years and allow the river to transport sediment throughout its reach, helping to rebuild the natural bed structure and flow of the Elwha all the way to the sea by rebuilding beaches that today are starved for sand and other fine material.
In the short term, excess turbidity remains the biggest concern during the next 3–10 years. About 600 dams have been taken down in the U.S. over the past 50 years, but none involved so much sediment (24 million cubic yards).
In the case of the Elwha, Congress authorized the dam removal 20 years ago, but it took two decades to get the money and logistical details in place.
An ice storage building in Chicago’s Fulton Market District is being redesigned for use as bike component manufacturer SRAM’s headquarters. Up until last October the space was part of ten stories of cold storage for the meat and fish market. After decades of use, the building literally had to be defrosted like an old freezer, with the assistance of large propane heaters to accelerate the melting process. See the Time Lapse Video here.
ARTWORK OF THE WEEK
Vanishing Point photographies (2003 - ongoing)
Read more and see more pictures on the Vanishing point website
Aerial photographs of Icelandic rivers by photographer Andre Ermolaev
The tank of Montsouris was constructed in the south of Paris in 1874. At the time it was the biggest tank in the world and to this day, still supplies 1/5 of the Parisian population with water. At the time trouts were used in the reservoir itself to monitor the water quality.
More at MyParisNet.com
ARTWORK OF THE WEEK
The Rainbow: Certain Principles of Light and Shapes Between Forms (2012)
Michael Jones McKean
Michael Jones McKean’s project creates a simple, but phenomenal visual event — a rainbow in the sky. The public artwork produces temporary rainbows above the Bemis Center for Contemporary Arts in Omaha, Nebraska, utilizing solely captured rainwater. Throughout the project cycle, collected and recaptured rain water is filtered and stored in water tanks. Within the gallery, a custom designed pump supplies pressurized water to nozzles mounted to the roof of the Bemis Center. At timed intervals, in the morning and early evening, a dense water-wall is projected above the building in which the rainbow emerges.
More at Bemis Centre
A new watering hole called the Molecule Cafe has opened up in New York’s East Village, and it serves only one thing: NYC tap water. The cafe gets the water from the tap, filters it and then sells for $2.50 a bottle. The owner of the cafe says their water is purified of chlorine, fluoride and compound metals to create a “pharmaceutical-grade water”.
The Science Barge greenhouse is a prototype of sustainable urban farm floating on the Hudson River. The greenhouse grows an abundance of fresh produce including tomatoes, melons, greens, and lettuce with zero net carbon emissions, zero pesticides, and zero runoff.
More at Groundwork Hudson Valley