Daily Digest: Bethel Island leader says river barrier could destroy his town’s economy, Bottled water business grows despite drought, Pool & hot tub filling bans have industries steaming, green celeb lawns, brown church lawns, and more …

Daily DigestIn California water news today, Bethel Island leader says river barrier could destroy his town’s economy, Bottled water business grows despite drought, California’s pool & hot tub filling bans have industries steaming, Recycled drinking water: Getting past the yuck factor, Sewer water puts Tri-Valley on the map, California is in a major drought so why are some celebrity lawns so green?, Mormon Temple in West LA lets its landmark lawn go brown, Newport Beach gets tough on water use, Oceanside floats the idea of encouraging graywater systems, and more …

On webcast today …

The Delta Program Interagency Implementation Committee will meet today from 1 to 5 pm.  On the agenda, briefings on high impact science actions, water storage, invasive weeds, and the Yolo Bypass.  Click here for the agendaClick here for webcast links.

In the news today …

Bethel Island leader says river barrier could destroy his town’s economy:  “Tony Berzinas, president of the Bethel Island Municipal Improvement District Board, said the new West False River barrier the state Department of Water Resources is building threatens his community’s safety and economics.  There will be increased flows that will take place to the north of Bethel Island on Fisherman’s Cut slough caused by the massive rock dam, he said. … ”  Read more from the Central Valley Business Times here:  Bethel Island leader says river barrier could destroy his town’s economy

Bottled water business grows despite drought:  “A new Crystal Geyser Water Co. plant opening at the foot of Mount Shasta is adding to criticism of companies that are bottling water in California’s drought.  Crystal Geyser plans to eventually tap up to 365,000 gallons a day from groundwater in Northern California’s Siskiyou County, the San Francisco Chronicle reported Sunday.  Converted from an old Coca-Cola bottling plant, the facility will become the latest of 108 bottling operations by various companies in the state, the Chronicle reported. Operations are due to start this fall. ... ”  Read more from the Redding Record Searchlight here:  Bottled water business grows despite drought

California’s pool, hot tub filling bans have industries steaming:It’s hard to imagine a California summer without long days lounging by the pool. But as unprecedented drought sears the state, the backyard swimming pool has become a target for cities desperate to save water.  As cities and water districts put the squeeze on water users, even pool lovers are canceling construction contracts. Pool builders are steamed, accusing water officials of stressing symbolism over science. And contractors are getting increasingly creative in finding sources of water for pools that cities won’t fill. … ”  Read more from the San Jose Mercury News here:  California’s pool, hot tub filling bans have industries steaming

Recycled drinking water: Getting past the yuck factor:  “Water spilled out of a spigot, sparklingly clear, into a plastic cup. Just 45 minutes earlier, it was effluent, piped over from Orange County’s wastewater treatment plant next door. At a specialized plant, it then went through several stages of purification that left it cleaner than anything that flows out of a home faucet or comes in a brand-name bottle.  “It’s stripped down to the H, 2 and O,” said Mike Markus, the general manager of the county water district. He was not exaggerating. Without the minerals that give most cities’ supply a distinctive flavor, this water tastes of nothing. ... ”  Read more from the New York Times here:  Recycled drinking water: Getting past the yuck factor

Builders turn to greywater at construction sites:  “New mandates to cut water use already are being felt at construction sites. But many people may not notice.  While residential building sites are still likely to have roaming trucks spraying water to reduce dust, it’s less likely they’re using potable water to do so.  Barry Grant, Northern California division president for Meritage Homes, said many builders are trying to find sources of reclaimed water — also called “greywater” — instead. … ”  Read more from the Sacramento Business Journal here:  Builders turn to greywater at construction sites

Sewer water puts Tri-Valley on the map:In the fourth year of drought, the most popular place these days appears to be in line to fill up on free sewer water.  More than 900 people have signed up to haul home sewage effluent given away by the Dublin San Ramon Services District treatment plant — the first in the state to dispense free recycled water to do-it-yourselfers.  In an only-in-California kind of way, it’s become a booming business.  … ”  Sewer water puts Tri-Valley on the map

California is in a major drought so why are some celebrity lawns so green?Some Hollywood A-Listers are getting an F grade for their lack of conservation savvy in times of severe California drought.  KCAL9’s Erica Nochlin reports stars like Jennifer Lopez, Kim Kardashian and Jessica Simpson have beautiful manicured lawns in places like Hidden Hills, Calabasas and Beverly Hills — and in some cases neighbors who aren’t happy about it.  “It gets me mad because I feel that it should apply to everybody,” says Angie Luna. … ”  Read more from the CBS News here: California Is In A Major Drought So Why Are Some Celebrity Lawns So Green?

Mormon Temple in West LA lets its landmark lawn go brown:  “Bob and Carolyn Millard were married at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints’ palatial Westwood temple more than 50 years ago. Like many other Mormon brides, Carolyn posed for photos alongside the temple’s lush, green lawn and gardens.  When she visited the temple last week, Millard was struck by the sight of the hillside expanse that extends down to Santa Monica Boulevard. It was mostly patchy and brown. ... ” Read more from the LA Times here:  Mormon Temple in West LA lets its landmark lawn go brown

Facing drought cuts, Newport Beach gets tough on water use: Newport Beach may soon enforce stricter water conservation measures for local residents and businesses.  The City Council is expected to vote Tuesday on a staff recommendation to move to Level 3 of the city’s conservation plan.  Under the proposal, homeowners would have to restrict their water use in each billing period to 75% of their average use for that period in the past three years. ... ”  Read more from the LA Times here:  Facing drought cuts, Newport Beach gets tough on water use

Oceanside floats the idea of encouraging graywater systems:  “The city of Oceanside is urging residents to consider installing graywater systems to help meet the state-mandated 25 percent water cutbacks.  Deputy Mayor Chuck Lowery said at a May 6 Oceanside City Council meeting the graywater systems allow household water to be used a second time. ... ”  Read more from KPBS here:  Oceanside floats the idea of encouraging graywater systems

Plenty more news and commentary in the weekend edition of the Daily Digest …

Daily Digest, weekend edition: State of water is grim, Drought rules frustrate regions that prepared for the worst, Would a wild water plan work?, Delta receives temporary dam but reactions are mixed, and more …

In commentary today …

A million hours and still not shovel ready, says George Skelton:  He writes, “Gov. Jerry Brown says critics of his water tunnel plan who haven’t spent 1 million hours studying it — as his administration has — should just shut up.  Well, that bait is too tempting to resist.  First, only a government could spend that much time on a project and not turn a shovel.  Second, Brown should be thankful so many people have criticized his proposed fix of the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta. Because they prodded him into recently improving the project, at least making it less intrusive and ugly. … ”  Read more from the LA Times here:  A million hours and still not shovel ready

Who uses water?  The answer isn’t that simple, says William Tweed:  “I’ve been writing about water and climate in my last few columns, and I’m going to address these issues one more time before we move on to some other subjects in coming weeks. Today, I want to answer an excellent question that has come my way.  Now that it’s clear to almost everyone that there is not enough water in California to meet all our demands, everyone is looking for someone or something to blame. The basic argument here is that: “if only ____ didn’t use so much water, then there would be plenty for the rest of us.” … ”  Read more from the Visalia Times-Delta here:  Who uses water? The answer isn’t that simple

Who controls California’s tap?  Here’s what I learned from a fat book:  Nathanael Johnson writes, “Like lots of people in drought-desiccated California, I have been hustling to educate myself about the power dynamics of water in the state. And so I read this appreciation of California water historian, Norris Hundley, Jr., with great interest. It portrays Hundley as the historian whose picture is the most realistic — the one who surveyed the academic skirmishes among his colleagues, and came away with something better.  John Christensen, an environmental writer with too many titles to list here, wrote that appreciation of Hundley. I asked him: If I wanted to read just one book about water in California, should I choose Hundley’s The Great Thirst? His answer: Yep. ... ”  Read more from Grist here:  Who controls California’s tap? Here’s what I learned from a fat book

Precipitation watch …

From the National Weather Service:NorCal will see cooler and more unsettled weather this week as a couple of weather systems affect the region. Most shower and thunderstorm activity will be limited to the far northern portion of the state through mid-week, but more widespread showers will be possible toward the end of the week.”

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.

hard_working_on_computer_anim_150_clr_7364Maven’s Notebook
The diary of a confessed obsessive-compulsive California water news junkie

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