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FROM THIS EPISODE

A Western problem is moving East, with drought now afflicting one-third of the United States. But Mother Nature's only part of the reason that water shortages are increasingly common.  We hear what inefficient use of water has to do with it.  Are new restrictions and higher prices part of the future? Also, a 2500-acre wildfire strikes California's Lake Tahoe and, on Reporter's Notebook, messages on the Internet from an Israeli soldier and a British journalist kidnapped in Gaza.


Woolly Hollow State Park photo courtesy of John Lewis, National Weather Service, Little Rock, Arkansas

Producers:
Dan Konecky
Andrea Brody
Katie Cooper

Main Topic Permanent Drought and Water Efficiency 33 MIN, 41 SEC

The dried-out forests of South Lake Tahoe are ablaze today with hundreds of homes destroyed and hundreds more in danger. Meantime, a historically Western problem is moving East.  Grass that used to be underwater caused massive fires last month in Florida's Lake Okeechobee; there's drought in about one-third of the country, including 40% of Alaska and parts on Minnesota.  However, not all water shortages are caused by Mother Nature.  With drought increasingly a fact of life, we talk about shortages caused by the way we use water.  Are water restrictions and higher prices in store?

Guests:
Mike Hayes, Associate Director of the National Drought Mitigation Center
Bob King, Politico.com (@BKingDC)
Dennis Bragg, third-generation farmer in Meridianville, Alabama
Peter Gleick, Co-Founder and President, Pacific Institute (@PeterGleick)

Reporter's Notebook Hamas Website Posts Audio/Video of Palestinian Captives 9 MIN, 26 SEC

One year ago, Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit was snatched by gunmen who had tunneled across the border from Gaza to Israel.  BBC journalist Alan Johnson was kidnapped in March. Both have now been heard from on the Internet. In an audio message posted today and verified by his father, Shalit says his health is deteriorating and that Israel has "a lack of interest" in his plight. In a video that appeared yesterday, Johnson says he's been strapped with explosives that will be detonated if Hamas carries out threats to free him by force. Conal Urquhart, Middle East correspondent for the Guardian newspaper, has the details.

Guests:
Conal Urquhart, Middle East Correspondent for the Guardian

Making News Fire Raging in South Lake Tahoe 5 MIN, 48 SEC

The State of California has declared a state of emergency for El Dorado County where 240 structures have been destroyed, including 160 homes. Hundreds more are threatened by a wildfire that's burning on 2500 acres of dry forest near South Lake Tahoe. Marisa Lagos of the San Francisco Chronicle says firefighters are hoping to get a handle on the fire by Wednesday.

Guests:
Marisa Lagos, Political Reporter, San Francisco Chronicle

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