DAILY DIGEST: Stormy pattern to resume along the West Coast this weekend; Westlands Water District settlement left in limbo; New star of San Francisco’s water system: Calaveras Dam touted as model of safety, efficiency; and more …

In California water news today, Stormy pattern to resume along the West Coast this weekend; Westlands Water District settlement left in limbo; San Francisco moves to ready the Embarcadero for earthquakes, sea level rise; New star of San Francisco’s water system: Calaveras Dam touted as model of safety, efficiency; To stave off seawater intrusion, Monterey County supervisors support a moratorium on new wells; This lake was lowered for a utility project. Now the fish are dying from lack of oxygen; Los Banos dairyman faces cow waste dumping charges. “I got permission,” he says; $27 million later, the LA snowpack emergency of 2017 is over

In the news today …

Stormy pattern to resume along the West Coast this weekend:  “After a brief reprieve from the storm onslaught, a batch of rain, wind and snow will sweep through the Pacific Northwest and California late this weekend.  While much of Northern and central California were spared from the storms this week, that will not be the case heading into early next week as the storm track expands to the south.  Into Saturday morning, rain will subside for shoppers and travelers along the West Coast. ... ”  Read more from Accu-Weather here:  Stormy pattern to resume along the West Coast this weekend

Westlands Water District settlement left in limbo:  “This year, the annual bill governing national defense policy almost settled a three-decades-old conflict in California over the drainage of toxic water from farm fields.  Lawmakers finished resolving the differences between the House and Senate versions of the military bill, legislation that addresses troop numbers and overseas operations, on Nov. 8. They considered – but ultimately dropped – a rider, the San Luis Unit Drainage Resolution Act, which would have confirmed a 2015 settlement transferring federal responsibility for dealing with contaminated water in California’s Westlands Water District to the district itself. … ”  Read more from Water Deeply here:  Westlands Water District settlement left in limbo

San Francisco moves to ready the Embarcadero for earthquakes, sea level rise:  “San Francisco is stepping up efforts to remake the Embarcadero in light of two very different threats, the ever-present danger of earthquakes and the long-term likelihood of sea level rise.  City Hall and the Port of San Francisco also are putting real money into the deal — starting with $40 million for a 10-year contract with a team of 21 consultants that includes everything from civil engineers to landscape architects. … ”  Read more from the San Francisco Chronicle here:  San Francisco moves to ready the Embarcadero for earthquakes, sea level rise

New star of San Francisco’s water system: Calaveras Dam touted as model of safety, efficiency:  “Hidden away in the bulging hills of the Sunol Valley, construction on the showpiece of San Francisco’s water delivery system overhaul is nearing completion.  At the northernmost tip of the Calaveras Reservoir, a critical component of the vast Hetch Hetchy network that sends water to 2.7 million Bay Area residents, a brand-new, $810 million earthen dam is now 89 percent complete.While the new Calaveras Dam rests just 1,000 feet downstream from its 91-year-old predecessor, it’s being built to meet far more stringent seismic standards. … ”  Read more from the San Francisco Chronicle here:  New star of San Francisco’s water system: Calaveras Dam touted as model of safety, efficiency

To stave off seawater intrusion, Monterey County supervisors support a moratorium on new wells:  “The fight against seawater intrusion in the Salinas Valley Groundwater Basin is about to get a lot more real.  On Nov. 14, Monterey County Water Resources Agency Senior Hydrologist Howard Franklin presented six different recommendations to the County Board of Supervisors that aim to help slow or halt the intrusion, which has advanced in alarming ways over the last few years.  The stakes are high, and hard to overstate: Advancing seawater intrusion, in which seawater fills in underground aquifers when freshwater is pumped, threatens water supplies in the lower Salinas Valley, putting many millions – if not billions – of dollars’ worth of agricultural operations at risk, as well the municipal water supplies of Salinas and Marina. … ” Read more from Monterey Weekly here:  To stave off seawater intrusion, Monterey County supervisors support a moratorium on new wells

This lake was lowered for a utility project.  Now the fish are dying from lack of oxygen:  “Trout have been dying at Mammoth Pool reservoir on the upper San Joaquin River due to a lack of oxygen, and the California Department of Fish and Wildlife is blaming the electric utility that owns the reservoir.  Oxygen readings are in the killing zone because Southern California Edison released too much water from the lake, said Peter Tira, spokesman for the state agency.  “We have a very unfortunate, discouraging situation with Mammoth Pool,” he said. ... ”  Read more from the Fresno Bee here:  This lake was lowered for a utility project.  Now the fish are dying from lack of oxygen

Los Banos dairyman faces cow waste dumping charges.  “I got permission,” he says:  “Los Banos dairy farmer and school board member Dennis Areias, and his farm worker, are being charged with dumping more than 300,000 gallons of cow waste into state waterways.  Areias pleaded not guilty Friday in Merced Superior Court to one count of discharging hazardous waste and a misdemeanor count of depositing it in state waterways.  Areias told the Los Banos Enterprise that a California Department of Fish and Wildlife report that led to the felony charge isn’t telling the full story. He claimed he obtained permission for the dumping to save his cows from illness and death due to torrential rainwaters last winter. ... ”  Read more from the Los Banos Enterprise here:  Los Banos dairyman faces cow waste dumping charges.  “I got permission,” he says

$27 million later, the LA snowpack emergency of 2017 is over:  “The emergency that Los Angeles declared last spring to prevent flooding and damage from a near-record Sierra snowpack is over, Mayor Eric Garcetti has declared.  The city spent $27 million to reduce the risk that homes and roads could be flooded and that the Los Angeles Aqueduct could be blocked with silt and damaged. The money also went to prevent flood damage to more than $1 billion worth of pipes, pumps, berms and plants installed on the Owens Dry Lake to reduce dust and air pollution. ... ”  Read more from KPCC here:  $27 million later, the LA snowpack emergency of 2017 is over

In commentary today …

Don’t complain about farmers with your mouth full, says Ruben Navarette:  “Whenever this country mouse comes home to Central California, as I did recently to speak to citrus farmers, one thought comes to mind:  “How is it that a nation like ours — founded not by politicians but by farmers — finds it so difficult to show the proper respect for farming?”  A holiday set aside for us to be thankful and indulge our palate seems like the perfect time to show gratitude to those who supply the bounty. Or as Eric Larson, executive director of the San Diego County Farm Bureau, puts it: “If you criticize farmers, don’t do it with your mouth full.” ... ”  Read more from the San Jose Mercury News here:  Don’t complain about farmers with your mouth full

More news and commentary in the Thanksgiving Day edition …

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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