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Australia says some water cuts permanent

by Staff Writers
Sydney (AFP) Sept 16, 2007
Some water restrictions introduced in Australia's most populous state because of a long-running drought will become permanent because of the threat of global warming, officials said Sunday.

Banned forever will be the practice of hosing pathways and the daytime use of sprinklers to water lawns and gardens.

The New South Wales government said the restrictions would remain in place even when the drought is over and dam levels are at capacity.

"We know that climate change is real, it's here and the changes brought by climate change are going to change the way we use water," state Premier Morris Iemma said.

"With the decline in average rainfalls, an increase in hot days... it means we have to be smarter about how we use water."

Iemma said the restrictions were common sense in Australia, the world's driest inhabited continent.

Many Australian cities have water restrictions in place and New South Wales, the eastern seaboard state of which Sydney is the capital, introduced mandatory water restrictions in 2003.

Water Utilities Minister Nathan Rees said he expected little opposition to the move, particularly as there had been a shift in the way people used water in recent years.

"These measures are not just about the drought that we're currently in but for droughts in years to come," he said.

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Icy Calculations On A Hot Topic
Salt Lake City UT (SPX) Sep 11, 2007
University of Utah mathematicians have arrived at a new understanding of how salt-saturated ocean water flows through sea ice - a discovery that promises to improve forecasts of how global warming will affect polar icepacks. In the current issue of the journal Geophysical Research Letters, math Professor Ken Golden and colleagues show that brine moving up or down through floating sea ice follows "universal transport properties."

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