NEWS WORTH NOTING: New PPIC report: Building drought resilience in California’s cities and suburbs; Folsom Dam Water Control Manual update out for public review; Lawsuit filed against DWR over Oroville Dam records
New PPIC Report: Building Drought Resilience in California’s Cities and Suburbs
From the Public Policy Institute of California:
California’s urban water suppliers have become increasingly adept at drought management thanks to investments in diverse supplies, cooperative efforts with neighbors, and programs to manage water demand. But in the face of extreme hot and dry conditions, questions arose over preparedness for ongoing drought, and the state took the unprecedented step of ordering mandatory water conservation in 2015. This report looks at evolving state and local roles in managing urban water supply during drought, and lessons to help us better prepare for droughts of the future.
Folsom Dam Water Control Manual update out for public review
From the Army Corps of Engineers:
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Sacramento District released a draft environmental document today addressing the proposed Folsom Dam Water Control Manual update. The Water Control Manual outlines specifications for flood storage space and reservoir releases when water encroaches into the flood storage space.
The draft Supplemental Environmental Assessment/Environmental Impact Report includes an update to the operation rules for Folsom Dam, incorporating the flood risk management and dam safety benefits of the Folsom Dam auxiliary spillway project, also known as the Joint Federal Project. The JFP includes a new control structure and a 3,027-foot-long spillway that will work in conjunction with the main dam to manage releases from Folsom Reservoir.
Public meetings are scheduled for June 14-15, 2017, to allow the public to learn more about the proposed update, ask questions of Corps staff and to submit comments. The Corps is accepting comments until July 21, 2017.
The public meetings will be held:
Wednesday June 14, 2017; 3-4:30 p.m. Sacramento Library Galleria
828 I Street
Sacramento, CA 95814
Thursday June 15, 2017; 6-7:30 p.m. Folsom Community Center
52 Natoma Street
Folsom, CA 95630
Scheduled for completion in October, the JFP is an approximately $900-million cooperative effort between the Corps, U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, Central Valley Flood Protection Board, California Department of Water Resources and the Sacramento Area Flood Control Agency designed to improve the safety of Folsom Dam and reduce flood risk for the Sacramento metropolitan area.
Lawsuit Filed Against DWR over Oroville Dam Records
AquAlliance filed a lawsuit in state court on June 6, 2017 against the California Department of Water Resources (“DWR”) over its failure to release records related to the Oroville Dam main and emergency spillways crisis that started in February 2017.
On April 19, 2017 AquAlliance filed a Public Records Act (“PRA”) request to DWR to release records that explicitly pertained to the asbestos. The asbestos was uncovered by the break in the main spillway and then further eroded by the massive water released at the main spillway that was necessary due to the near failure of the emergency spillway. AquAlliance has been concerned about the extent of the asbestos material and how it did or will affect workers, Oroville residents, and aquatic species. In response to the request, DWR released nine documents, none of which included any e-mail communication. When questioned further, DWR claimed that there are no more responsive records and that all responsive e-mails are protected under attorney-client privilege.
AquAlliance disagrees and is asking the court to enforce the PRA. “DWR’s culture is bound by secrecy to protect its image and its very slanted focus, which is to maximize water exports to its contractors,” expressed Barbara Vlamis, AquAlliance’s Executive Director. “AquAlliance strongly believes that the public’s right to know is essential in a democracy and legally enforceable, something we are happy to take on,” she continued.
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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.