Thursday, August 15, 2013

News articles and links from August 15, 2013

Trinity River 

From: Editorial, Chico Enterprise-Record 

Our view: A judge shouldn't allow this year's salmon to be sacrificed for next year's crops in the distant San Joaquin Valley.

Coalition response...The judge's decision has nothing to do with north state or south state water "desires." There are quantities set aside for both under federal law. What is in question is whether or not the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation can take more water than the law provides. Reclamation had more than 400,000 acre-feet of water, enough to farm about 160,000 acres or to meet the daily needs of 800,000 families, to use for fishery protection this year. Rather than properly plan to legally provide supplemental flows to minimize the effect of diseases that exist on the Klamath River on an expected near historic number of salmon returning to spawn, they choose instead to try and take this water from other legal uses including protection of endangered species, management of waterfowl, clean power generation, recreation, industry, daily human needs, and, yes, farming. Regarding the question of what the judge's ruling means for the future, northern California residents should take comfort from a decision to not allow an illegal infringement upon water rights to occur.

Bay Delta Conservation Plan 

From: Tom Elias, Marysville Appeal-Democrat

(This article was previously printed in several newspapers.)
Backers of the water tunnels at the heart of the proposed $25 billion plan for updating and replumbing the Delta of the Sacramento and San Joaquin rivers thought they had played a trump card the other day when they presented a 244-page economic impact report.

Coalition response...The Bay Delta Conservation Plan is an effort to obtain a 50-year conservation permit that will improve the Delta through habitat restoration and protection of species. This environmental permit should also improve water supply deliveries to about 4,000 farms and 25 million Californians. This author fails to recognize the importance of a dependable supply of water. For farmers, this means they will not be forced to abandon their fields following planting after learning their water supply will be reduced. It also means that the safe and healthy food supply farmers provide to consumers will continue.

Comparing the proposed tunnels to the Peripheral Canal of 1982 is an effort that is absent in facts. Capacity of the tunnels is only 9,000 cubic feet per second and the canal would have transported 21,800 cfs. Learn more about the differences at

The $84 billion identified in the cost-benefit analysis is a statewide number, not one that will benefit only one region and not the next. The up and down fluctuations in California's economy is felt throughout our state and an $84 billion boost will be felt by all.

From: Matt Weiser, Sacramento Bee
From: Matt Weiser, Modesto Bee 
From: Matt Weiser, Fresno Bee 

California water officials are proposing a dramatic redesign of two massive water diversion tunnels planned for the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta, a concession to Delta residents who have complained the project would upend their lives.

From: Alex Breitler, esanjoaqin  

The Legislative Analyst's Office is not as confident as the state that the governor's twin tunnels plan will reap billions in net benefits to the state.

Water Supply

From: Todd Fichette, Western Farm Press

This story out of Texas could be played out in California very soon.

Every day we take for granted a number of things:

    The lights will come on when we touch the switch,
    Water will flow from the tap when we turn it on,
    Food will be plentiful, fresh and available at our local grocery store.

From: Antoine Abou-Diwan, Imperial Valley Press

Lake Powell and increase the likelihood of a Colorado River water shortage declaration.

The Bureau of Reclamation's 24-month Study Reports utilize hydrologic data from the National Weather Service to project operations of the Colorado River's system of reservoirs over a two-year period. Additionally, the August report will explain how much water is released from Lake Powell over the next water year. That report is expected to be published Friday.

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