DAILY DIGEST: Strange bedfellows? Westlands and San Francisco share common ground; Outlook grim but not hopeless as climate summit convenes in San Francisco; Tunnel fight coming to a head; PG&E has put the Potter Valley Project up for auction; and more …

In California water news today, Strange bedfellows?  Westlands and San Francisco share common ground; Outlook grim but not hopeless as climate summit convenes in San Francisco; Brown seeks to return spotlight to climate change; Tunnel fight coming to a head; PG&E has put the Potter Valley Project up for auction, and who buys it could shape water policy for decades; and more …

In the news today …

Strange bedfellows?  Westlands and San Francisco share common ground:  “It’s rare that Westlands Water District and San Francisco face identical problems, but plans to keep more water flowing in the San Joaquin and Sacramento rivers – leaving less for irrigators and cities – is bringing the two together.  Westlands, the largest agricultural water district in the United States, said if proposed plans are adopted by state water regulators, its farmers would have to fallow more land due to lack of reliable water supplies, putting people out of work, harming the economy and hurting the quality of life of communities and residents whose lives are tied to westside agriculture. … ”  Read more from the Fresno Bee here:  Strange bedfellows?  Westlands and San Francisco share common ground

Outlook grim but not hopeless as climate summit convenes in San Francisco:  “This week corporate and civic leaders from around the world will gather in San Francisco for the Global Climate Action Summit.  The effort was spearheaded by Gov. Jerry Brown to move the fight against global warming beyond the national commitments made in Paris nearly three years ago.  “Look, it’s up to you and it’s up to me and tens of millions of other people to get it together to roll back the forces of carbonization,” says Brown in a promotional video for the summit. ... ”  Read more from KQED here:  Outlook grim but not hopeless as climate summit convenes in San Francisco

San Francisco hosts global climate summit: will it make a difference?  “This week, thousands of political leaders, scientists, activists, journalists, celebrities and business leaders will arrive in San Francisco for a global summit on climate change, an event that makes California a worldwide flag-bearer on the issue at a time when the federal government is in retreat.  The event at Moscone Center, dubbed the “Global Climate Action Summit,”  is something of a swan song for outgoing Gov. Jerry Brown. He leaves office in January, having led California to major gains in renewable energy and cuts in greenhouse gas emissions — all amid a backdrop of record drought, floods and massive wildfires that brought the issue into stark focus. ... ”  Read more from the San Jose Mercury News here:  San Francisco hosts global climate summit: will it make a difference?

Brown seeks to return spotlight to climate change; Tunnel fight coming to a head:  “Gov. Jerry Brown’s decades-long fight to alter Delta water flow will face a new test this week.  A legislative hearing is scheduled for Tuesday, a step toward extending State Water Project contracts for another 50 years. … ”  Read more from Cal Matters here:  Brown seeks to return spotlight to climate change; Tunnel fight coming to a head

More news and commentary in the weekend edition …

In commentary today …

Saving troubled water systems requires flexible solutions, not mandates, say Michael Kiparsky and Nell Green Nylen:  They write, “During the hot summer months of 2014, East Porterville, Calif., became a poster child for vulnerable drinking water. Hundreds of shallow wells in this unincorporated Tulare County community ran dry in the midst of statewide drought. Some families had to wait years to have running water again, when their homes were finally connected to the city of Porterville’s municipal water supply.  While East Porterville’s experience made headlines around the country, the serious drinking-water problems facing other communities across California are just beginning to receive much-needed attention. … ”  Read more from Water Deeply here:  Saving troubled water systems requires flexible solutions, not mandates

Defunding science for the Colorado River has consequences, says Kristina Young:  She writes, ” … Despite the recent successes and the ecological benefits of maintaining diverse aquatic ecosystems, the White House Office of Management and Budget has ordered that $23 million of hydropower revenue, intended for native fish and riparian research and recovery programs, be redirected to the U.S. Treasury beginning October 1 of this year. This removal of previously consistent funds for science and recovery places our rivers at risk for detrimental or unwanted ecological changes. Loss of these programs may result in continued imperilment of our native fish species and the discontinuation of valuable data collection in Colorado River ecosystems spanning back decades. The importance of continuous long-term data is underscored by a changing climate, increasing water demands, and altered waterways, all of which need to be managed into the future. Without continued long-term data informing our understanding of how these river systems respond to change, we will be managing our changing rivers blind. … ”  Read more from the Salt Lake Tribune here:  Defunding science for the Colorado River has consequences

Column: The amazing Tuolumne Sue Lempert writes,The Tuolumne River flows for 149 miles throughout Central California, from the Sierra Nevada to join the San Joaquin River in the Central Valley. It originates in Yosemite National Park 8,000 feet above sea level. … The fresh water from the Tuolumne is sought by farmers, cities, developers, salmon and us. It is the subject of a current battle: the State Water Resources Control Board versus the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission and the Bay Area Water Supply and Conservation Agency (BAWSCA). … ”  Read more from the Daily Journal here:  Column: The amazing Tuolumne

In regional news and commentary today …

PG&E has put the Potter Valley Project up for auction, and who buys it could shape water policy for decades:  “PG&E kicked off an auction this past week for the Potter Valley Project (PVP), a hydroelectric facility which includes the Scott’s Dam, the Cape Horn Dam — both located on the main stem of the Eel River — as well as a power plant and a tunnel that diverts water from the Eel River watershed to the Russian watershed. The Project spans about 5,500 acres in Mendocino and Lake counties, and includes Lake Pillsbury. Water from the Project is diverted at the Van Arsdale reservoir, and provides irrigation water for Potter Valley, and then proceeds into the headwaters of the Russian River, to Lake Mendocino, and south to many farms and towns in southern Mendo, Sonoma, and Marin counties.  … ”  Read more from the Mendocino Voice here:  PG&E has put the Potter Valley Project up for auction, and who buys it could shape water policy for decades

Chico: Groundwater management agencies before board:  “The structure of the agencies being established to manage the groundwater beneath Butte County is made clear by two items before the Butte County Board of Supervisors Tuesday.  The board is being asked to approve agreements to set up the Vina Groundwater Sustainability Agency and the Wyandotte Creek Groundwater Sustainability Agency.  Sustainability agencies are required under the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act, which was approved by the Legislature and signed by Gov. Brown in 2014. ... ”  Read more from the Chico Enterprise-Record here: Chico: Groundwater management agencies before board

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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