Spend Matters Afternoon Coffee

China's glass: half-empty?
Quenching China's Thirst For Water -- China's water issues are particularly acute. The country's water supply is smaller than that of the U.S., yet it must meet the needs of a population nearly five times as large. Industrialization has taken its toll on this already limited resource. Industrial and biological pollution has contaminated almost 90 percent of the underground water in Chinese cities. The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that one out of four (300 million) Chinese do not have daily access to clean water, and that one out of two (700 million) are forced to consume water below WHO standards. High population density, a poor ratio of available water to demand, and regional imbalances in available water supplies are serious challenges for China in managing its usable water supply. Frequent floods ravage cities in the south and east, and droughts are a regular occurrence in the north and west.

The search is on...
Auto supply chain seeks other sources of chemical -- Automakers and suppliers are bracing for shortages of CDT after a March 31 explosion that killed two at a Evonik Industries plant in Marl, Germany. IHS Automotive analysts projected that the plant -- which accounts for half of worldwide CDT production capacity when including one of Evonik's customers -- could be closed up to eight months. Invista communications manager Jodie Stutzman said Thursday that the company's Victoria, Texas, manufacturing plant had offered some excess CDT to the auto industry.

Birdbaths of doom.
Water in Your Birdbath? That Will Be $300 -- The summons referred to a two-story brick house in Astoria that Mr. Pomares, a 53-year-old home renovation contractor, had recently refurbished and rented to tenants. Titled "vector control inspection work order," the citation accused him of violating what appeared to be a paradoxical imperative: "standing water" in a birdbath. The violation of Article 151 of the city's health code could subject him to a $2,000 fine. "I bought the birdbath brand new. I thought I was doing something good, and I changed the water every other day," Mr. Pomares recalled. "I had beautiful birds."

TV: Losing its viewer supply.
Prime-Time Ratings Bring Speculation of a Shift in Habits -- Across the television landscape, network and cable, public television and pay cable, English-language and Spanish, viewing for all sorts of prime-time programming is down this spring -- chiefly among the most important audience for the business, younger adults. In the four television weeks starting March 19, NBC lost an average of 59,000 viewers (about 3 percent) in that 18-to-49 age category compared with the same period last year, CBS lost 239,000 (8 percent), ABC lost 681,000 (21 percent) and Fox lost 709,000 (20 percent).

- Sheena Moore

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