BLOG ROUND-UP: The spawning dead: Why zombie fish are the anti-apocalypse; 25th anniversary of water reform law provides perspective on progress and challenges; Water is life, relationality, and tribal sovereignty; Enhancing Oroville hatchery salmon contribution; and more …

They grow all kinds of things in the Central Valley …

blog-round-up-previous-editionsThe spawning dead:  Why zombie fish are the anti-apocalypse:  Mollie Ogaz writes, “Imagine you are on the bank of a river or stream in California’s Central Valley. It is just past sunset, leaves rustle overhead, and you feel a tingling along your spine. Suddenly a zombie fish leaps past you, patches of decomposed flesh visible as it streaks by. It’s a thing of nightmares; just a figment of the imagination brought on by the spooky atmosphere, right?  No.  It a Pacific salmon (Oncorhynchus spp.), making its upstream migration to natal spawning grounds. … ”  Read more from the California Water Blog here:  The spawning dead:  Why zombie fish are the anti-apocalypse

Water is life, relationality, and tribal sovereignty: An interview with Melanie K. Yazzie:  Faith Kearns writes, “Melanie K. Yazzie is an Assistant Professor at UC Riverside. I spoke with her after seeing her presentation at the UC Merced Humanities conference “Water: Ways of Knowing and Being.” This is part one of a two part interview with Dr. Yazzie. This spring, you gave a talk about Indigenous politics and what you called the “social life of water.” A main premise of your talk was that the water is life movement is, at heart, about a radical politics of relationality. Can you say more about what you mean by that?  I came up with the term “radical politics of relationality” as part of my dissertation research, which focused on resource extraction and nationhood in the Navajo Nation during the 20th century. My interest in water began in 2012 during a public uprising over a water settlement on a tributary in the Lower Colorado River Basin. At the time, the phrase “water is life” had become increasingly popular in political discourse and social movements. I wanted to understand where the phrase came from because I knew it wasn’t out of nowhere – it arose because of certain political, historical, and social dynamics. … ”  Read more from the Confluence blog here:  Water is life, relationality, and tribal sovereignty: An interview with Melanie K. Yazzie

25th anniversary of water reform law provides perspective on progress and challenges:  “California’s most important federal water reform law- the Central Valley Project Improvement Act – will celebrate its 25th anniversary on October 30.  This landmark law was authored by Congressman George Miller and Senator Bill Bradley, and was signed into law by President George Bush.  (Imagine that today – a major environmental reform bill with bipartisan support.) The law was an historic effort to protect and restore California’s wetlands, rivers, migratory waterbirds, salmon and other fish species, and also to promote more sustainable water supplies for a drought prone state.   … ”  Read more from Audubon here:  25th anniversary of water reform law provides perspective on progress and challenges

Enhancing Oroville Hatchery Salmon Contribution:  Tom Cannon writes, “In a recent post, I discussed ways to increase returns/survival of the Coleman (Battle Creek) Hatchery produced smolts released to the Sacramento River and the Bay. In this post I focus on ways to improve returns/survival of young salmon produced at the Oroville (Feather River) Hatchery. Trucking smolts to the Bay in drier water years and releasing spring flow pulses in wetter years remain the key management actions for increasing the contribution of hatchery salmon to coastal and river fisheries. Timing of releases is also critical. While overall returns are highly influenced by ocean conditions, active management by hatchery managers (trucking, barging, and timing of releases) and water managers (flow pulses) are important tools in maximizing the contribution of hatchery smolts to salmon populations. … ”  Read more from the California Fisheries Blog here:  Enhancing Oroville Hatchery Salmon Contribution

A weekend excursion leads to a trove of information about California Water Fix:  Marta L. Weismann writes, “Southern California has a problem. Its base water supply is at risk due to aging infrastructure and declining conditions in the Delta that make it increasingly difficult to convey water through the Delta. A Saturday outing to Descanso Gardens in La Cañada Flintridge, California led to an unexpected opportunity to hear why the Southern California Water Committee (“SWSC”) sees California WaterFix as the solution.  A free public outreach event, Wet & Wonderful: Celebrating Our Precious Water, was hosted by a handful of local agencies from Southern California’s Verdugo Canyon area and nearby communities to promote the continuing need to conserve water. The venue, which includes areas that feature California native plants and a water wise garden, was an apt location for the event. … ”  Read more from the Hydrowonk blog here:  A weekend excursion leads to a trove of information about California Water Fix

Facing rollbacks, California must protect drinking water, wetlands: Richard Frank writes, “Californians strongly support action by state and federal agencies to ensure that the water in our streams and the water we drink are free of dangerous contaminants, and that our precious wetlands are preserved. Unfortunately, the Trump administration and Congress propose to weaken federal Clean Water Act protections for those essential resources.  But California regulatory agencies needn’t and shouldn’t wait for this federal rollback. They should instead take action proactively to use state law to ensure clean water and wetlands protections for all Californians. … ”  Continue reading at the California Water Blog here:  Facing rollbacks, California must protect drinking water, wetlands

California’s upcoming water bond measure will do more than meets the eye: David Festa writes, “There’s a lot to like about SB 5, the $4 billion parks and water bond legislation signed by Governor Jerry Brown, qualifying it for the June 2018 ballot.  For starters, its largest allocation – $725 million – will go toward building new parks in underserved neighborhoods. That’s a good thing for communities who are often overlooked when it comes to environmental investments and protections. … ”  Read more from the Growing Returns blog here:  California’s upcoming water bond measure will do more than meets the eye

New report shares how California can map out, invest in state’s valuable working landscapes:  “California’s working landscapes include farmland, ranches, forests, wetlands, mines, water bodies and other natural resource lands, both private and public. From clean water and nutritious food to climate stability and outdoor recreation, they provide essential benefits for our economy, health and quality of life. These ecosystem services are often taken for granted, leading to underinvestment in the natural systems and rural communities that sustain them.  A new report — Ecosystem Services and Working Landscapes: Market Mechanisms to Revitalize Rural Economies, prepared by Daniel O’Connell, Ph.D., and Adam Livingston, with support from the University of California Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources — offers a framework for mapping, valuing and investing in ecosystem services. To ensure that those who manage California’s working landscapes benefit from stewarding them, the report recommends that policymakers do the following … ”  Read more from the California Economic Forum blog here:  New report shares how California can map out, invest in state’s valuable working landscapes

Oakdale district election about more than water:  “When the Modesto Bee’s Garth Stapley reported that listeners erupted in laughter after Oakdale Irrigation District (OID) Board member Herman Doornenbal said, “We’re transparent….ask any question, we’ll do our best to give you an answer,” the incident illustrated perfectly the disconnect between long-term OID Board members and the general public. Doornenbal was speaking at a forum sponsored by the Stanislaus League of Women Voters on October 11. ... ”  Read more from the Valley Citizen here:  Oakdale district election about more than water

When people have less water, they use less water:  John Fleck writes, “Consumptive use of Colorado River water by the states of the Lower Basin (Nevada, California, and Arizona) is on track this year to be at its lowest since 1986. This graph, which I put together this weekend for a talk I’m giving at the Upper Colorado River Basin Water Forum at Colorado Mesa University in Grand Junction next week, seems pretty remarkable to me … ”  Read more from the Inkstain blog here:  When people have less water, they use less water

The world’s water challenges (2017): Cora Kammeyer writes, “Water is perhaps the most vital natural resource on the planet. It is necessary for human survival and a critical input into our food, manufacturing, and energy systems. It also sustains the ecosystems and climates upon which both our built and natural world rely.  Today we are putting more pressure on freshwater resources than ever. Between a rapidly growing population and a shifting climate, water stress – and therefore water risk –  is increasing around the world. The United Nations Sustainable Development Goal 6 is focused on water, with several sub-goals related to different water challenges. We have seen promising progress, but there is much work to be done to make water sustainability a reality before the SDG target date of 2030. … ”  Read more from the Pacific Institute here:  The world’s water challenges (2017)

25 years of water efficiency across the US:  Ed Osann writes, “Twenty-five years ago this week, President George H.W. Bush ushered the federal government into our bathrooms.  This turned out to be a good thing.  The Energy Policy Act of 1992 (EPAct 92), approved with bipartisan support in Congress and signed by Bush 41 on October 24, 1992, contained the first national standards requiring water efficiency in new consumer products. Despite being the butt of some toilet-themed ribbing, this historic act has brought about a sea-change in how Americans use water. Over the past quarter century, standards for plumbing fixtures and appliances such as shower heads, washing machines, and yes, toilets, have saved taxpayers billions of dollars while protecting water resources across the country—and they’re still working today. … ”  Read more from the NRDC here:  25 years of water efficiency across the US

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About the Blog Round-up: The Blog Round-up is a weekly journey through the wild and varied tapestry of blog commentary, incorporating the good, the bad, the ugly, and sometimes just plain bizarre viewpoints existing on the internet. Viewpoints expressed are those of the authors and not necessarily my own; inclusion of items here does not imply my endorsement of their positions. Items are chosen to express a wide range of viewpoints, and are added at the editor’s discretion. While posts with obvious factual errors are excluded, please note that no attempt is made on my part to verify or fact check the information bloggers present, so caveat emptor – let the buyer beware.

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