DAILY DIGEST: Could a simpler Delta tunnel solve years of conflict?; Oroville Dam: DWR says spillway will be done by deadline; California’s first big winter snowstorm headed for the Sierra; Can the Bay Area design its way out of sea level rise?; and more …

In California water news today, Could a simpler Delta tunnel solve years of conflict?; Oroville Dam: DWR says spillway will be done by deadline; California's first big winter snowstorm headed for the Sierra; ‘Time is of the essence': Fisheries face uncertainty; Can the Bay Area design its way out of sea level rise; Memorandum brings new hope to clean up the New River; Rising temperatures are sucking water out of the Colorado River; and more …

On the calendar today …

In the news today …

Could a simpler Delta tunnel solve years of conflict?  “California’s ambitious plan to build two giant water tunnels under the West’s largest estuary has been deemed too expensive by some of the water utilities that would have to pay for it. As a result, attention is turning back to a cheaper option: One tunnel instead of two.  On October 17, the board of directors of the Santa Clara Valley Water District unanimously rejected the $17 billion twin-tunnel project, known as WaterFix, and instead expressed support for a smaller, single-tunnel alternative. The district serves more than 1 million people in Silicon Valley. … ”  Read more from Water Deeply here:  Could a simpler Delta tunnel solve years of conflict?

Oroville Dam: DWR says spillway will be done by deadline:  “Crews are laying the last layer of concrete on the Oroville Dam spillway with one day until the state Department of Water Resources’ deadline to have the structure ready to pass flows of 100,000 cubic-feet per second, or cfs.  Over the last week, Kiewit Corp. construction workers connected the lower and upper chutes and erected the walls. Now all that is left is to place a coating of roller-compacted concrete in the middle chute “that will provide a stronger wearing surface,” said Erin Mellon, the department’s assistant director of public affairs. ... ”  Read more from the Oroville Mercury-Register here:  Oroville Dam: DWR says spillway will be done by deadline

California's first big winter snowstorm headed for the Sierra:  “It’s only Halloween, but winter is on the way.  Two storm systems moving out of the Gulf of Alaska are on track to bring the first substantial snow of the 2017-18 winter season to the Sierra Nevada, starting Friday, and widespread rainfall across the Bay Area over the weekend.  Forecasters said Monday that gusty winds and 1 to 2 feet of snow are likely Saturday and Sunday along California’s main mountain passes, including Donner Pass near Lake Tahoe, Tioga Pass at Yosemite, Ebbetts Pass and Carson Pass, with perhaps a foot along the shoreline of Lake Tahoe this weekend. ... ”  Read more from the San Jose Mercury News here:  California’s first big winter snowstorm headed for the Sierra

‘Time is of the essence':  Fisheries face uncertainty:  “State regulators and fishing officials said at a Eureka hearing on Friday that only by working together can they overcome the trials and uncertainty that several California’s fisheries face today.  With a poor salmon catch in 2017 and 2016 and a potential delay in the North Coast Dungeness crab season following three years of poor landings and abnormal ocean conditions, Pacific Coast Federation of Fishermen’s Associations Executive Director Noah Oppenheim said fishing fleets are still feeling the economic effects and that time to address the underlying issues is running slim. … ”  Read more from the Eureka Times-Standard here:  ‘Time is of the essence’:  Fisheries face uncertainty

In commentary today …

California should give Prop 1 money to groundwater storage projects, says Kirsten James:  She writes, “Three years ago, during the height of the drought when water was top of mind, California voters overwhelmingly approved a $7.5 billion water bond, known as Proposition 1, to help the state better manage the precious resource.  Of its many purposes, $2.7 billion of the bond money was earmarked to improve water storage infrastructure. So after its passage, water utilities and other stakeholders got busy preparing proposals for a slice of the storage pie. By the state’s deadline in mid-August 2017, a dozen storage proposals had landed at the California Water Commission, which will decide how the money is allocated. … ”  Read more from Water Deeply here:  California should give Prop 1 money to groundwater storage projects

In regional news and commentary today …

Garberville Sanitary District eyes putting cannabis grows on different water meter:  “The Garberville Sanitary District Board of Directors bid farewell to a resigned board member and discussed preliminary plans to put cannabis cultivators on a separate water meter from other commercial and residential uses. … “There’s no intention at all of denying anybody water,” Emerson stressed when explaining the preliminary plan to the Redwood Times on Friday. … ”  Read more from the Redwood Times here:  Garberville Sanitary District eyes putting cannabis grows on different water meter

San Francisco bolsters flood resilience in the face of climate change:  “With last week’s heat wave done and gone, replaced by cooler temperatures and rain in the forecast for later this week, the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission is making the winter rainy season a top-of-mind issue.  Last week, the agency vastly expanded a grant program that reimburses flood victims who want to install improvements like doorway seals, flood gates or plumbing upgrades to lessen or prevent future flood damage from rainstorms. The move served as a prelude to the kickoff Tuesday of the PUC’s RainReadySF initiative, an annual campaign to get out the word about preparing for floods. ... ”  Read more from the San Francisco Chronicle here:  San Francisco bolsters flood resilience in the face of climate change

Can the Bay Area design its way out of sea level rise:  “Last month, as Hurricane Irma was bearing down on Florida, a crowd of international designers, scientists, and policy-makers gathered at a warehouse-turned-winery at the Port of Richmond.  They were there to launch a new effort called Resilient by Design to consider how the Bay Area will adapt to seas that could, at the extreme end, rise 10-feet higher by the end of this century. Ten winning design teams have until May to come up with shovel-ready projects, from blueprint to community support and a financing plan. The crowd drank glasses of wine, toasted the challenge, and drew comparisons to events playing out on the evening news.  “We can’t afford to see Harvey, Katrina, Sandy, and Irma from a distance,” said Richmond’s mayor Tom Butt. “The same type of destruction we see on T.V. is laughing at our doorstep. We need a new approach, we need to think differently, innovate, and work together to adapt.” … ”  Read more from Bay Nature here:  Can the Bay Area design its way out of sea level rise

Fish out of (normal) water: Rare sturgeon seen in Stanislaus River:  “A prehistoric fish that looks like it dropped straight out of the dinosaur age has found its way back to the San Joaquin River watershed.  Biologists have confirmed the presence of a green sturgeon — a threatened species under the federal Endangered Species Act — in the Stanislaus River near Knights Ferry.  That’s a long way from where you would expect to find one. Green sturgeon are known to migrate and spawn in the Sacramento and Feather rivers, but this is the first time one of the bony, pointy-nosed bottom-dwellers has been confirmed in the more polluted and heavily diverted San Joaquin River region upstream of Stockton. … ”  Read more from the Stockton Record here:  Fish out of (normal) water: Rare sturgeon seen in Stanislaus River

Water district to conduct low-flying groundwater survey:  “Residents of the Indian Wells Valley should expect to see a low-flying helicopter towing a large wire-loop hanging from a cable over the basin as depicted in the photo above.  The aerial survey, consisting of a low-flying helicopter collecting and recording geophysical measurements for scientific purposes, is expected to start on or about Friday, Nov. 10 through Sunday, Nov. 12. The SkyTEM helicopter-borne geophysical system will collect measurements by flying relatively low to the ground (hundreds of feet above the surface) to measure electrical properties of the earth. Data collected during this survey will assist in mapping groundwater salinity, aquifer properties and faults. … ”  Read more from the Ridgecrest Independent here:  Water district to conduct low-flying groundwater survey

Memorandum brings new hope to clean up the New River:  “The City of Calexico in partnership with the IID and Imperial County gathered to sign a memorandum of understanding today.  The agreement is in regards to The New River Improvement Project and how it will improve the water quality.  “The New River is a part of our past, present, and foreseeable future. The question then becomes, what do we do to insure our community and environment are not harmed by it,” asked Eric J. Ortega, IID Division 4 Director. … ” Read more from KYMA here:  Memorandum brings new hope to clean up the New River

Rising temperatures are sucking water out of the Colorado River:  “Rising temperatures are undermining the source of one third of Southern California’s drinking water: the Colorado River.  A new study by the US Geological Survey finds the river’s flow has shrunk by about seven percent over the past 30 years. As air temperature rises due to increasing emissions of greenhouse gases, more water is sucked into the atmosphere from the snowpack and the river itself instead of flowing downstream. The amount that has evaporated is equal to approximately 24 percent of the total amount of California’s annual Colorado River allocation. ... ”  Read more from KPCC here:  Rising temperatures are sucking water out of the Colorado River

And lastly …

Now for the important stuff:  Guide to pairing wine with Halloween candy:  “On the morning of Nov. 1, there will be a ton of candy in my house. I allow my boys to go trick or treating on Halloween, and they come home with pillowcases stuffed with all sorts of candy.  I know I'm not alone in confessing that, yes, I will most likely sneak a little of that candy. Interestingly, I came across an infographic from Vivino that suggests wine pairings for common Halloween treats ... ”  Read more here:  Guide to pairing wine with Halloween candy

Precipitation watch …

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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