Vol 3, Issue 8

A bowl of shark fin soup with crab meat at Ho Ho Chinese BBQ in Austin.
A bowl of shark fin soup with crab meat at Ho Ho Chinese BBQ in Austin.

Shark Fin Ban Back on the House Menu

A proposal to ban the trade of shark fins in Texas sailed through the Texas House on Wednesday, but it faces choppier waters ahead: the Texas Senate, where similar legislation foundered in 2013.

Yongli Gao is an associate professor at the Department of Geological Sciences and the acting director of Center for Water Research at the University of Texas at San Antonio.
Yongli Gao is an associate professor at the Department of Geological Sciences and the acting director of Center for Water Research at the University of Texas at San Antonio.

The Q&A: Yongli Gao

Yongli Gao is the acting director of the Center for Water Research at the University of Texas at San Antonio. He is also an associate professor of environmental geology and hydrology.

The Rio Grande has been the lifeblood of the valleys and civilizations it flowed through for more than 3,000 years. As cities and farms suck it dry and a warming climate makes it evaporate faster, the river's future has never been more uncertain.
The Rio Grande has been the lifeblood of the valleys and civilizations it flowed through for more than 3,000 years. As cities and farms suck it dry and a warming climate makes it evaporate faster, the river's future has never been more uncertain.

Rio Grande Crippled by Drought

The region's prolonged drought has impacted the Rio Grande River in multiple ways: challenging farmers, fueling environmental conflicts and sparking water disputes between Texas and its neighbors.

Gerald Cole, owner of Organicare Farms in Taylor, checks his kale plants. The vegetables are grown using aquaponics, a system in which waste matter from fish in tanks is broken down and used as nutrients for the plants.
Gerald Cole, owner of Organicare Farms in Taylor, checks his kale plants. The vegetables are grown using aquaponics, a system in which waste matter from fish in tanks is broken down and used as nutrients for the plants.

Water Restrictions Divide California Residents

Mandatory water restrictions enacted by California Gov. Jerry Brown have caused tension between growers who are exempt from cutbacks and homeowners who feel they are being asked to bear too much of the burden.

Facing downstream from Dolan Falls on the Devils River. The river is fed by freshwater springs that flow from the limestone cliffs above.

*Editor's Note: An earlier version of this slideshow incorrectly identified a butterfly as a monarch butterfly.
Facing downstream from Dolan Falls on the Devils River. The river is fed by freshwater springs that flow from the limestone cliffs above. *Editor's Note: An earlier version of this slideshow incorrectly identified a butterfly as a monarch butterfly.

Photographer Documents Drought in the West

Justin Sullivan set out to capture the severity of the drought in the West by documenting the water level creeping lower in lakes and reservoirs in California, Utah and Arizona.

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