Daily Digest: Above normal rainfall predicted, nitty-gritty time for Temperance Flat funding, biomimicry, power plants and more …

Daily DigestIn California water news today, Above normal rainfall predicted, nitty-gritty time for Temperance Flat funding, Can biomimicry solve our water problems?, Power plants kill billions of fish, enviro groups say,and more …

In the news today …

  • Above normal rainfall predicted:  “By the end of this week, be sure to start battening down the hatches.  Weather officials on Monday updated a rain outlook for the month of December, saying now that there will be above-normal rainfall moving toward the New Year that will have a significant effect on the drought outlook. ... ”  Read more from the Salinas Californian here:  Above normal rainfall predicted
  • It’s nitty-gritty time for Temperance Flat funding:This isn’t over. The San Joaquin Valley campaign for Temperance Flat Reservoir may have moved forward on federal drawing boards, and it may have gotten a shot of adrenaline when the $7.5 billion water bond past this month.  But the public money is not committed here yet. Instead, a spotlight has suddenly appeared on the California Water Commission, a seemingly obscure, nine-member board. ... ”  Read more from the Fresno Bee here:  It’s nitty-gritty time for Temperance Flat funding
  • Can biomimicry solve our water problems? With floating islands and other inventions, eco-entrepreneur Bruce Kania thinks so:  Bruce Kania stood over an open trapdoor, peering down precipitous stairs into a repurposed septic tank sunk in the middle of Fish Fry Lake. “Stay behind me, and do what I do,” he said, grasping the railing in bear-paw hands. A breeze teased his white hair and lifted his slacks at the left ankle to reveal the shaft of a prosthetic leg. “It gets tricky down there.”  And with that, the CEO of Floating Island International lowered his angular 6-foot-5-inch frame down the hatch.  I squinted into the concrete bowels. … ”  Read more from High Country News here:  Can biomimicry solve our water problems?
  • Power Plants Kill Billions of Fish, Enviro Groups Say:Billions of fish and hundreds of protected species are killed each year by power plants’ water intakes, which federal agencies allow in defiance of laws, environmentalists claim in court. The Sierra Club and seven other environmental groups sued the National Marine Fisheries Service and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service on Nov. 20 in Federal Court. They claim the defendants issued biological surveys supporting a rule authorizing water cooling intake structures at thousands of power plants, though the systems kill billions of fish each year. … ”  Read more from the Courthouse News Service here: Power Plants Kill Billions of Fish, Greens Say
  • Harvest trumps drought in Yuba-Sutter:  “Harvest season is over, and both mainstays of Yuba-Sutter agriculture reported a strong year despite a withering drought.  Rice growers reported strong production per acre, although the overall yield suffered due to water shortages and fallowed fields. … ”  Read more from the Appeal-Democrat here:  Harvest trumps drought in Yuba-Sutter
  • Santa Rosa: Unanimous county vote approves stream setbacks: “Sonoma County supervisors Monday adopted a hard-won compromise between farmers and environmental groups, advancing protective buffer zones along 3,200 miles of streams and rivers in the county.  “This is a historic day,” Board Chairman David Rabbitt said. “It wasn’t easy to get here.”  Supervisors unanimously approved the measure shielding 82,000 acres of land outside city limits, most of it on private property, from future farming and development. … ”  Read more from the Santa Rosa Press Democrat here: Unanimous county vote approves stream setbacks
  • Environmental group to sue San Jose for sewage spills and trash pollution:  “In a move that could force the city of San Jose to spend millions modernizing its sewage system, cleaning up trash and removing homeless encampments, an environmental group announced Monday it will file a lawsuit under the Clean Water Act charging the city with failing to stop pollution from washing into creeks and San Francisco Bay.  The group, San Francisco Baykeeper, said San Jose has had 780 sewage spills over the past five years, and has allowed tons of trash to flow into the Guadalupe River and Coyote Creek through its storm drain system. ... ”  Read more from the Contra Costa Times here:  Environmental group to sue San Jose for sewage spills and trash pollution
  • Online site, surveys rank Santa Cruz water supply ideas:Remarks from participants streaming out of last month’s science-fair style fair exploring water supply alternatives for Santa Cruz demonstrated a truth that still exists about seawater desalination many years after it was first proposed — it’s polemical.  When 117 visitors were surveyed leaving the “Our Water, Our Future” event, the project that received the most and least favorable reactions was desalination, said Robert Singleton, whose firm, Civinomics, conducted the surveys. About one in four participants were surveyed. … ”  Read more from the Santa Cruz Sentinel here: Online site, surveys rank Santa Cruz water supply ideas
  • State issues warnings for fish in Camanche and New Melones reservoirs:For the first time, state regulators have announced that certain fish commonly caught in two local reservoirs — Camanche and New Melones — are not safe for some people to eat because of high mercury levels.  The new guidelines issued by the state Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment are not a surprise, however. They are similar to other guidelines that have previously been published for lakes, rivers and streams across California, including the Delta. … ”  Read more from the Contra Costa Times here:  California says reservoirs tainted
  • Measuring the cost of Claremont’s water takeover:  “As the city begins its effort to acquire a water system from Golden State Water Company one question looms: at what cost?  For years, Claremont residents have lobbied to buy the water system but it wasn’t until this year that a majority of the City Council backed such a measure.  On Nov. 4, voters overwhelmingly backed a bond measure that allows the city to borrow up to $135 million to acquire the system, which serves more than 11,000 customers. ... ”  Read more from the Daily Bulletin here:  Measuring the cost of Claremont’s water takeover

Also on Maven’s Notebook today …

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About the Daily Digest: The Daily Digest is a collection of selected news articles, commentaries and editorials appearing in the mainstream press. Items are generally selected to follow the focus of the Notebook blog. The Daily Digest is published every weekday with a weekend edition posting on Sundays.

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The diary of a confessed obsessive-compulsive California water news junkie

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