DAILY DIGEST, weekend edition: Can an uneasy truce hold off another water rebellion in the Klamath Basin?; Jerry Meral discusses the Nov. water bond; Here’s why words matter in the migratory bird debate; PG&E plan to sell Potter Valley project unsettles North Coast water system; and more …

Truckee River, April 2018

In California water news this weekend, Can an uneasy truce hold off another water rebellion on California’s northern border?; November water bond promises $8.7 billion towards securing California’s future; Eradication of invasive rodent off to a slow start; Oroville Dam emergency spillway work to continue into 2019; Here’s why words matter in the migratory bird debate; Trump White House quietly cancels NASA research verifying greenhouse gas cuts; PG&E plan to sell Mendocino County hydropower project unsettles North Coast water system; and more …

In the news this weekend …

Can an uneasy truce hold off another water rebellion on California’s northern border?  “The last time water was this scarce in the Klamath Basin, a rugged agricultural area straddling the California-Oregon border, farmers clashed with U.S. marshals and opened locked canal gates with blowtorches so they could irrigate. Nearly 10,000 agriculture activists from around the U.S. later converged on the region to hold symbolic “bucket brigade” protests.  Months of unrest ended after then-Vice President Dick Cheney personally intervened and worked behind the scenes to have water delivered to the growers — a decision that tribal fishing communities downstream blamed for killing 68,000 salmon in the fall of 2002. ... ”  Read more from the Sacramento Bee here:  Can an uneasy truce hold off another water rebellion on California’s northern border?

November water bond promises $8.7 billion towards securing California’s future: “California voters are being presented with two upcoming water bond propositions in the June and November elections. In June, Prop 68 will present voters with a $4 billion Parks and Water Bond, and in November the Water Supply and Water Quality bond will present voters with an $8.7 billion bond. Recently, TPR sat down with Jerry Meral, official proponent of the November Water Bond and director of the California Water Program at the Natural Heritage Institute. … Question: Recently, the $8.9 billion water bond that you’ve been instrumental in crafting was certified for the November ballot. If passed, what would that measure fund?  Jerry Meral:  The bond funds state drinking water, which is a huge statewide need, and safe wastewater disposal, which is a big priority in disadvantaged communities. … ”  Read more from The Planning Report here:  November water bond promises $8.7 billion towards securing California’s future

Eradication of invasive rodent off to a slow start:  “Before the midday heat had set in, Jeff Cann and Tim Kroeker were out of their Dodge pickup, trudging through waist-deep water in waders and rubber boots.  The two wildlife biologists had come to this vast expanse of sun-soaked Central Valley wetlands on a recent morning to check in on the first traps that California has authorized in its nascent effort to hunt — and exterminate — the nutria.  The invasive rodent from South America, which can grow to 3 feet long and weigh 25 pounds and breed furiously, has been found burrowing beneath rivers and marshes in six counties. If it continues to spread, state officials fear it will not only ravage crops and wildlife habitat but upend dikes and dams, possibly flooding homes and undermining water supplies at a time when climate change is already testing California’s water infrastructure. … ”  Read more from the SF Chronicle here:  Eradication of invasive rodent off to a slow start

Oroville Dam emergency spillway work to continue into 2019:  “While work to repair the main Oroville Dam spillway will largely be done by Nov. 1, in response to a question, the Department of Water Resources clarified that work on the emergency spillway will continue into 2019. ... ”  Read more from the Chico Enterprise-Record here:  Oroville Dam emergency spillway work to continue into 2019

Here’s why words matter in the migratory bird debate:  “Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke’s lawyerly defense of the clipped Migratory Bird Treaty Act is no accident.  With a brisk Capitol Hill exchange yesterday, Zinke illuminated the subtlety of words, the practice of spin and, not least, the crucial importance of a job opening he must try once again to fill.  And it all unfolded in under two minutes, toward the tail end of a long budget hearing, when Sen. Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.) pressed Zinke about the department’s recast legal opinion that the MBTA covers intentional but not incidental “take” — harm or killing — of migratory birds.  “The change to the Migratory Bird Act had to do with ‘accidental,'” Zinke said. “Now, what does that mean? Let’s say an oil company [employee] is driving on a road in Montana and hits a bird in the windshield, accidentally. Now, should that individual be held criminally liable?” … ”  Read more from E&E News here:  Here’s why words matter in the migratory bird debate

Trump White House quietly cancels NASA research verifying greenhouse gas cuts:  “You can’t manage what you don’t measure. The adage is especially relevant for climate-warming greenhouse gases, which are crucial to manage—and challenging to measure. In recent years, though, satellite and aircraft instruments have begun monitoring carbon dioxide and methane remotely, and NASA’s Carbon Monitoring System (CMS), a $10-million-a-year research line, has helped stitch together observations of sources and sinks into high-resolution models of the planet’s flows of carbon. Now, President Donald Trump’s administration has quietly killed the CMS, Science has learned. … ”  Read more from Science Magazine here:  Trump White House quietly cancels NASA research verifying greenhouse gas cuts

In regional news and commentary this weekend …

ORAC formally requests change to Lake Oroville settlement agreement:  “The Oroville Recreation Advisory Committee sent a letter this week to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. Its request: don’t get rid of us.  Twelve years ago, the committee signed onto a settlement agreement which would allow the state Department of Water Resources to operate the Oroville Dam for up to another 50 years. As part of that agreement, which has yet to be signed off on by FERC, ORAC would dissolve and be replaced by the Recreational Advisory Committee, led by the state Department of Water Resources, as opposed to community representatives. ... ”  Read more from the Chico Enterprise-Record here:  ORAC formally requests change to Lake Oroville settlement agreement

PG&E plan to sell Mendocino County hydropower project unsettles North Coast water system:  “PG&E intends to sell a remote Mendocino County hydropower project at an auction this fall, a decision that means little in terms of its meager electrical output but sends a ripple through the water system that supplies cities, residents and ranchers from Ukiah south through much of Sonoma County and into northern Marin County.  Many of the more than 600,000 customers and residents who get their water from the Russian River have no idea how much of it flows from the Potter Valley Project’s two dams on the Eel River and through an aging powerhouse in the out-of-the-way valley about 20 miles north of Ukiah. ... ”  Read more from the Santa Rosa Democrat here:  PG&E plan to sell Mendocino County hydropower project unsettles North Coast water system

Team UPLIFT, Vallejo dropped from Resilient by Design program:  “A project meant to improve the infrastructure of Bay Area cities so they can better withstand rising sea levels, has dropped Vallejo from the program, it was learned Friday.  The project, called Resilient by Design, was announced in October, 2017, and a group of experts in various fields that called itself Team UPLIFT was assigned to Vallejo.  “Resilient by Design and Team Uplift have mutually decided to an early conclusion of their Bay Area Challenge work due to emerging challenges that could not be met within the time-line of the venture,” Resilient’s Derek Jansen said in an email. … ”  Read more from the Vallejo Times-Herald here:  Team UPLIFT, Valleyjo dropped from Resilient by Design program

Monterey Peninsula mayors water authority bypasses vote on Pure Water Monterey expansion motion:  “Despite scheduling a special meeting to consider joining, the Monterey Peninsula Regional Water Authority board declined on Thursday to even vote on backing additional hearings on a potential expansion of the Pure Water Monterey project in case the California American Water desalination project falters.  Board president Bill Kampe said the Peninsula mayors water authority board members expressed concern during Thursday’s meeting that the motion did not clarify the proposed Pure Water Monterey expansion hearings should not interrupt or interfere with the current proceeding involving Cal Am’s Monterey Peninsula Water Supply Project. … ”  Read more from the Monterey Herald here:  Monterey Peninsula mayors water authority bypasses vote on Pure Water Monterey expansion motion

Is your drinking water clean in Merced County?  Advocates say rural residents at risk:  “Dos Palos student Ace Mejia Sanchez doesn’t know where the drinking fountains are located at her school.  Why would she? Nobody uses them.  The 17-year-old said she’s been taught all her life not to drink from the tap, and instead sip bottled water.  “I thought it was normal that you would not drink from the tap,” she said on Friday. “We were taught you shouldn’t drink from the tap. I didn’t realize this (water) is a human right.” ... ”  Read more from the Merced Sun-Star here:  Is your drinking water clean in Merced County?  Advocates say rural residents at risk

Valley officials denounce non-funding of Temperance Flat Dam project:  “Steve Worthley is a Tulare County Supervisor and president of the San Joaquin Valley Water Infrastructure Authority, the applicant of the Temperance Flat Dam project.  “We are five counties, but when you include the water districts and the cities that are a part of our JPA, we truly cover the entire San Joaquin, and it’s four million people,” Worthley said. “The four million people of the San Joaquin Valley needs to be heard not only in Sacramento but throughout the state. We are important and what we produce in this valley is important not only to our valley, to the state, but to the world. We cannot afford to stop this process. We must go forward. We look forward to working with our federal partners, our private investors, but this project will proceed.”… ”  Read more from Cal Ag Today here:  Valley officials denounce non-funding of Temperance Flat Dam project

Merced: Dozens demand clean drinking water, support from lawmakers:  “Constituents of Assemblymember Adam Gray held signs and shouted several chants outside of his Merced office. They were asking for the lawmaker’s support in getting clean water to Merced County. Specifically, asking his support in SB 623, a bill that would create a fund to help maintain the state’s drinking water systems.  Paul Garcia, who lives in Delhi, at a rally Wednesday said living with contaminated water has not been ideal for his kidney condition.  “[I’m] constantly going to the doctor and they’re saying I need to drink more water, but the water is contaminated,” Garcia said. ... ”  Read more from Your Central Valley here:  Dozens demand clean drinking water, support from lawmakers

Chilean company denies it contaminated Pomona’s water:  “Jurors in a federal courtroom in Los Angeles were given the fundamentals on South American mining, citrus orchards in California and water testing Friday in a case involving a California city who says their groundwater was contaminated due to “defectively designed fertilizer” imported to the United States around 1930.  The city of Pomona, California, about 30 miles east of Los Angeles, said several of its groundwater wells are contaminated with perchlorate, which the city says can be traced back to the Atacama Desert in northern Chile, more than 5,000 miles south of California. Perchlorate salts are often used as propellants for fireworks and as a component of rocket fuel. ... ”  Read more from Courthouse News Service here:  Chilean company denies it contaminated Pomona’s water

Coachella Valley politicians, conservationists unite in rally for parks, environment, and water bond:  “Soccer practice, in full swing Saturday morning at Rancho Las Flores Park in Coachella, served as a perfect backdrop for a rally in support of Proposition 68 that, if approved, will create a $4.1 billion bond to finance water projects, state and local parks, conservation programs and flood protection projects.  Proposition 68 would also allocate $200 million to Salton Sea restoration efforts, a project near-and-dear to many of the political leaders who attended Saturday’s event because they grew up in communities near the deteriorating lake.  … ” Read more from the Desert Sun here:  Coachella Valley politicians, conservationists unite in rally for parks, environment, and water bond

Along the Colorado River …

Colorado River Indian Tribe’s plan to lease water to Tucson area is on hold after recall:  “The fate of a water-leasing efforts by the Colorado River Indian Tribes is unclear after a recall election that narrowly forced the architect of that plan from office.  Tribal Chairman Dennis Patch, who helped shepherd discussions to lease some of the tribes’ water for use in Central and Southern Arizona, lost by two votes in a recall election late last month that was triggered by opponents of leasing. ... ”  Read more from the Arizona Daily Star here:  Colorado River Indian Tribe’s plan to lease water to Tucson area is on hold after recall

Colorado River flow peaking early, at historically low level:  “The Colorado River’s peak flows are arriving early this spring and at one of the lowest levels recorded.  The Daily Sentinel reports that peak flows are expected Sunday on the Colorado and Gunnison rivers, at about 8,500 cubic feet per second near the Utah line. ... ”  Read more from KUTV here:  Colorado River flow peaking early, at historically low level

Also on Maven’s Notebook this weekend …

Click here to read more editions of the Daily Digest.

Daily emailsSign up for daily email service and you’ll never miss a post!

Sign up for daily emails and get all the Notebook’s aggregated and original water news content delivered to your email box by 9AM. Breaking news alerts, too. Sign me up!

—————————————-
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.

Maven’s Notebook
where California water news never goes home for the weekend

no weekends

(Visited 811 times, 1 visits today)

Leave a Reply