Tuesday, July 23, 2013

News articles and links from July 23, 2013

Bay Delta Conservation Plan

From: Staff, Los Angeles Daily News
From: Staff, Torrance Daily Breeze
From: Staff, San Bernardino Sun
From: Staff, Pasadena Star-News  
From: Staff, Whittier Daily News  

Is it Southern California's lot to be cast forever as the villain when it comes to water? Maybe. Probably, in fact.

But that doesn't mean it's fair or right.

Californians have engaged in battles over water rights for as long as there have been Californians and water rights. But a firm line was drawn in the sand between North and South three decades ago when our neighbors to the north joined with environmentalists and Central Valley farmers to reject the Peripheral Canal, which was supposed to divert water to Southern California before it entered the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta. It was painted as a water grab by greedy southerners.

Coalition response...This editorial accurately describes the dilemma that grips California's water supply. The distrust aimed at Southern California fails to acknowledge the benefits to our entire state that are available through the Bay Delta Conservation Plan. Improving the Delta's ecosystem through increased fish protections and the addition of over 100,000 acres of habitat is significant. Equally significant is a reliable water supply for 25 million Californians and thousands of farmers who grow the food we all enjoy.
The estimated cost to those in Southern California who receive water from the Delta would be an estimated $4 to $5 per household, per month, according to Metropolitan Water District. 
The overall cost for new urban water supplied through the Bay Delta Conservation Plan is $300-$400 per acre-foot, according to UC Berkeley economist David Sunding. This is a savings when compared to $1,000-$4,500 for recycled water or $1,200-$1,400 for conservation measures.  

Farmers have been plagued with an uncertain supply of water in recent years caused by drought and regulations written to protect Delta species. The Bay Delta Conservation Plan reduces that uncertainty and the effects caused by the regulations that have resulted in a 40 percent reduction in supply to farmers receiving water from the State and federal systems. This means that consumers can continue to rely on fresh Californian-grown produce when they visit their grocery stores.    

Bay Delta Conservation Plan

From: Maven, Maven's Notebook

On July 17, a public meeting was held to discuss the remaining chapters of the Bay Delta Conservation Plan that were released at the end of May.  Led by Jerry Meral, Deputy Director of the Natural Resources Agency, the meeting was well attended and included a large 'visually-vocal' contingent of Discovery Bay residents.

On the agenda is how much the project will cost and how it would be funded, as well as a discussion by Dr. David Sunding on how the benefits of the project for water contractors were calculated.


From: Mark Grossi, Fresno Beehive

The Kings River Conservation District wants to study a project to install a small hydroelectric unit on the Kings River near Sanger - creating electricity by using the river's flow at Gould Weir.

It's part of California's push to have 33% of its energy portfolio in renewable technologies, such as solar, wind and hydro, by 2020.

Water supply

From: Press release, Department of Water Resources

The California Department of Water Resources (DWR) has announced a 30-day public review period on a Proposed Negative Declaration (Proposed ND) for a proposed State Water Project supply allocation settlement agreement with four water agencies that receive water from the State Water Project.

From: Matthew Martz, Tehachapi News

It's been a dry year for California, and Tehachapi's water supply may be starting to feel the pinch.

According to Tehachapi-Cummings County Water District Manager John Martin, the district has been pumping 19.5 cubic feet per second since May 13, and has imported 1,186 acre-feet in June, slightly more than the districts forecast of 1,176.


From: Steve Knell, Manteca Bulletin  

(NOTE: This article requires a subscription.)
John Wooden, UCLA's legendary basketball coach, famously said, "Don't mistake activity for achievement." Californians who are interested in the health of our native salmon and steelhead populations should take heed of the coach's advice. Next week, the California Department of Fish and Wildlife and the National Marine Fisheries Service will host a two-day workshop at UC Davis to discuss "the State of the Science on Fish Predation on Salmonids in the Bay-Delta." The workshop will include the assessment of key predation studies by a panel of experts; identification of data gaps; and development of a framework for follow-up research. All this culminating in...you guessed it...another report. While additional science may be good chicken soup for scientists, at some point "actions" need to speak louder than words regarding this critical issue.


From: Michael Nolan, Redlands Daily Facts

California water agencies have filed arguments in a federal appeals court challenging a lower court judge's decision that upheld the expansion of the Santa Ana Sucker fish's critical habitat, much of which is in the Inland Empire.

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