News Worth Noting: NRDC says drought plan needs balance, Friends of the River posts BDCP comments, MCWRA adopts Sierra headwaters policy principles, Walker Mine clean-up, Clean Beaches Initiative grants, Obama’s wildfire strategies

NRDC: Water Agencies’ Drought Plan Needs Balance:The California Department of Water Resources and U.S. Bureau of Reclamation today released their proposed 2014 Drought Operations Plan, a proposal that waives key environmental standards to the detriment of the majority of Californians.The following is the statement of Natural Resources Defense Council Senior Attorney Kate Poole on the proposal:  “This proposal falls far short of being a balanced plan that will provide reliable water supplies for California families, farms, and wildlife. It calls for the Central Valley Project and State Water Project to violate upstream water temperature requirements, waive water quality standards, and violate pumping restrictions in the Delta, all of which are critically important to protect California’s fisheries,  Delta farmers and communities, and fishing families up and down the coast. … ”  Read more from the NRDC here: NRDC: Water Agencies’ Drought Plan Needs Balance

for logoFriends of the River posts BDCP comments:Friends of the River announced today that it is posting all comments made on the Bay Delta Conservation Plan (BDCP) Water Tunnels project on its website, , under the heading Bay Delta Conservation Plan Public Comment Library. The federal and state agencies in charge of the project now refuse to post any correspondence other than project proponent material touting the Water Tunnels. It is imperative that public interest organizations, public agencies, and California citizens, taxpayers and ratepayers have access to comments made as they come in to assist them in spotting issues and formulating their own comments on the 40,000 pages of advocacy–the Plan and draft EIR/EIS– touting the BDCP Water Tunnels. The government agencies declare they will not make the comments “available to the public” until “the release of the Final EIR/EIS.” That concealment of the comments until after the public review period has ended will be of no help to the public in formulating comments during the review period. … ”  Read more here:  4 10 14 BDCP comment press rel

mcwra logoMountain Counties Water Resources Agency adopts Sierra Nevada Headwaters Policy Principles:MCWRA’s mission is to unite agencies, groups and individuals whose interests include protecting and enhancing Mountain County water resources throughout the foreseeable future. The water resources of the Sierra Nevada Mountains (Sierra) are critical to the health of the State’s economic and environmental well-being.  To maintain and enhance the water resources for future generations, the MCWRA Board of Directors has established Sierra Nevada Headwater Policy Principles to serve as an important resource for public and private water and land managers at every level, including state, federal,and local governments. ... ”  Read the policy principles here: Sierra Nevada Headwaters Policy Principles

waterboard_logoCentral Valley Water Board Issues Cleanup and Abatement Order to Atlantic Richfield Company for the Walker Mine: The Central Valley Regional Water Quality Control Board has issued a Cleanup and Abatement Order (CAO) to the Atlantic Richfield Company (ARCO) for cleanup of the historic Walker Mine northeast of Quincy in Plumas County.  The Walker Mine is an underground copper mine which operated from 1916 to 1941. The mine continues to release elevated concentrations of copper into the Feather River Watershed above Lake Oroville. Starting in 1958, the Central Valley Water Board adopted multiple resolutions and issued several Waste Discharge Requirements to owners of the Walker Mine property.  ARCO was named as a discharger in the CAO because it is the successor by merger to mining companies that directed operation of the mine during its 1916 to 1941 operating period. … ”  Read more from the Central Valley Regional Water Quality Board here: Walker Mine cleanup and abatement

waterboard_logoClean Beaches Initiative grant program now open:  “The CBI Grant Program provides funding for projects that restore and protect the water quality and the environment of coastal waters, estuaries, bays, and near shore waters. The CBI Grant Program was initiated in response to the poor water quality and significant exceedences of bacterial indicators revealed by Assembly Bill (AB) 411 (Stats. 1997, Ch. 765) monitoring at California’s beaches. Scientific studies have shown that water with high bacteria levels can cause infections rashes, and gastrointestinal and respiratory illnesses. …The Clean Beaches Initiative (CBI) grant program will be open from April 3, 2014 to June 12, 2014 to accept concept proposals for implementation and research projects.”  Find out more here:  Clean Beaches Initiative

usda logoObama Administration Outlines New Strategy to Better Protect Communities, Businesses and Public and Private Lands from the Threat of Wildland Fire Ahead of 2014 Fire Season:As the 2014 wildfire season approaches, U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack, U.S. Interior Secretary Sally Jewell, and Council on Environmental Quality Acting Chair Mike Boots today released the Administration’s National Cohesive Wildland Fire Management Strategy. This strategy, developed by federal, state, tribal and local community partners, and public stakeholders, outlines new approaches to coordinate and integrate efforts to restore and maintain healthy landscapes, prepare communities for fire season, and better address the nation’s wildland fire threats.  “Through more strategic coordination with local communities, the National Cohesive Strategy will help us better protect 46 million homes in 70,000 communities from catastrophic wildfires,” said Secretary Vilsack. “This effort, combined with the Administration’s newly proposed wildland fire management funding strategy, will allow USDA and our partners to more effectively restore forested landscapes, treat forests for the increasing effects of climate change, and help avert and minimize destructive future wildfires.” ... ”  Read more from the USDA here: Obama Administration Outlines New Strategy to Better Protect Communities, Businesses and Public and Private Lands from the Threat of Wildland Fire Ahead of 2014 Fire Season


About News Worth Noting:  News Worth Noting is a collection of press releases, media statements, and other materials produced by federal, state, and local government agencies, water agencies, and academic institutions, as well as non-profit and advocacy organizations.  News Worth Noting also includes relevant legislator statements and environmental policy and legal analyses that are publicly released by law firms.  If your agency or organization has an item you would like included here, please email it to Maven.

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