Virginia’s Secretary of Natural Resources is warning that supplies of groundwater in the eastern part of the state are running dangerously low.
Speaking at a conference on the environment at Virginia Military Institute, Doug Domenech said stores are down due increased demand from new homes, shopping centers and industrial parks.
The state is now urging industries that don’t need clean water to consider finding other sources, such as rivers, and the legislature recently approved money to monitor areas where ground water is in decline.
The Virginia Department of Transportation has cleared another speed bump in its drive to build a bypass to Route 29 through Albemarle County.
Those who oppose the 29 bypass have made many arguments. Some think the project, which VDOT predicts will cost about $240 million is too expensive for the limited time drivers would save. Others worry about the impact on health from a six-mile road that would pass by six schools, while a third group feared trucks with hazardous cargo could pass too close to the city’s water supply.
Scientists in biological systems engineering at Virginia Tech have succeed in using xylose, a sugar found in plants to produce large quantities of hydrogen in an environmentally friendly way.
Unlike current methods of making hydrogen gas, Associate Professor Percival Zhang’s process is done at low temperatures, uses no heavy metals and releases almost no green house gases. His team designed an enzyme cocktail for splitting of the hydrogen. The result is energy production at a rate of more than 100% efficiency; a level current methods do not reach.