DAILY DIGEST, weekend edition: Full coverage of the Trump memo on western water; Making wine to help save water; Proposed partnership between tribe and water district could shake up Coachella Valley water management; Final wall placement on Oroville spillway; and more …

In California water news this weekend, Full coverage of the Trump memo; Making wine to help save water; Ranchers, vineyards reeling from summer wildfires; Survival trumps politics in poverty-hit Central Valley California farm town; EPA: Obama alumni return: “Wow, this is strange”; Proposed partnership between Agua Caliente and Mission Springs Water District could shake up desert water management; Tahoe ski resort opens for the season; Final wall placement on Oroville spillway; and more …

In the news this weekend …

TRUMP MEMO

Trump orders quicker environmental review of California water projects:  “President Trump on Friday directed federal agencies to speed up their environmental review of major water projects in California and to develop plans to suspend or revise regulations that hamper water deliveries.  The directive will have little immediate practical effect. But it comes a bit more than two weeks before a midterm election in which some Central Valley Republicans are in close races to hold on to their congressional seats. … ”  Read more at the LA Times here:  Trump orders quicker environmental review of California water projects

Here’s how Trump could mess with California’s water:  “President Trump fired another shot in his ongoing environmental war with California, signing a directive Friday aimed at boosting water supplies for California farmers, which in turn could come at the expense of endangered fish.  Trump was flanked at the signing by Republican congressmen from California who have long pushed for a bigger share of water for Central Valley agriculture.  “We will have it done very, very quickly,” Trump said. “I hope you enjoy the water that you’re going to have.” ... ”  Read more from KQED here:  Here’s how Trump could mess with California’s water

‘So much water.’ Trump moves to slash environmental rules on Delta, putting farms before fish:  “The Trump administration Friday pledged to slash the thicket of federal environmental regulations that govern the Delta and much of California’s water supply, aiming to increase water deliveries to his political allies in the San Joaquin Valley.  President Donald Trump signed a memorandum directing his underlings to review a broad swath of water regulations and “eliminate all unnecessary burdens,” the president said during an appearance in Arizona.  Trump’s memo drew quick reaction from California officials, who have fought the Trump administration on multiple fronts and said water supply can co-exist with environmental goals. “We can and must do both, without sacrificing one for the other,” said spokeswoman Lisa Lien-Mager of the Natural Resources Agency. “We hope we can continue working with the federal government to achieve these shared goals.” ... ”  Read more from the Sacramento Bee here:  ‘So much water.’ Trump moves to slash environmental rules on Delta, putting farms before fish

Central Valley in the crosshairs of Trump’s water war:  “President Donald Trump has ordered the government to streamline regulations that he says are hindering work on four major water projects in the western United States and specifically targeted the Central Valley Project.  Trump signed a memorandum Friday aimed at the Central Valley Project and the California State Water Project in California, the Klamath Irrigation Project in Oregon and the federal Columbia River system in the Pacific Northwest.  The memorandum orders the Interior and Commerce departments to speed up environmental reviews, streamline regulations and come up with a timeline to comply with the regulations. ... ”  Read more from the AP via Capital Public Radio here:  Central Valley in the crosshairs of Trump’s water war

Trump plan to boost Western water by easing rules worries advocates: “The White House on Friday released a plan that it said would improve water reliability and availability in the West by streamlining regulatory processes and conducting expedited reviews on water projects.  Details on the plan were scarce Friday, but environmental groups were immediately skeptical, with one advocate saying she is “sure it’s a bad idea,” despite the president’s claims that the plan will not harm the environment.  “Whatever he’s proposing to roll back protections is the wrong direction,” said Sandy Bahr, director of the Sierra Club’s Grand Canyon chapter. “It’s wrong for our health, our communities, our economy – this idea that having poor water quality and not protecting our rivers and streams would somehow be good for the economy is ludicrous.” ... ”  Read more from Cronkite News here:  Trump plan to boost Western water by easing rules worries advocates

Garamendi slams Trump directive over California water projects: “Ask any environmental policy expert and they’ll tell you that water rights, water supply and water quality initiatives are complicated and contentious issues in California.  Those issues are about to get a whole lot more complicated.  On Friday, President Donald Trump signed a memo ordering federal agencies to review certain regulations and programs that conservatives argue impede water delivery efforts to agricultural producers in California’s Central Valley. Those regulations, some argue, are keeping much-needed water from flowing farmers who need it the most; Trump’s memo on Friday urged agencies to “suspend, revise or rescind any regulations or procedures that unduly burden” that stand in the way of those projects. … ”  Read more from the Winters Express here:  Garamendi slams Trump directive over California water projects

OTHER STATEWIDE/NATIONAL

Making wine to help save water:  T.J. Rodgers’ latest venture:  “In a region where tech industry titans are as common as the area’s nightmarish traffic, it takes a lot for someone to stand out as truly legendary.  T.J. Rodgers is one of those legends.  An inventor of semiconductor technologies, an early investor in solar technology company SunPower, and most notably, the founder — and for 34 years, the only chief executive of Cypress Semiconductor — Rodgers has done enough to justify kicking back and spending his days following his beloved Green Bay Packers. ... ”  Read more from the San Jose Mercury News here:  Making wine to help save water:  T.J. Rodgers’ latest venture

Ranchers, vineyards reeling from summer wildfires:  “Growers are still taking stock of their losses after the late-summer wildfires that swept through large swaths of Lake, Mendocino, and Shasta counties in Northern California charred thousands of acres of rangeland and timber, destroyed several beekeeping facilities, and caused smoke taint troubles for wine grape growers.  In Lake County, the Mendocino Complex fires burned at least 40,000 acres of private rangeland, while also destroying about 30 acres of walnuts, 10 acres of grapes, and about 3.5 acres of pears, according to County Agricultural Commissioner Steven Hajik. ... ”  Read more from the Western Farm Press here:  Ranchers, vineyards reeling from summer wildfires

Survival trumps politics in poverty-hit Central Valley California farm town: A rooster signals the start of the day as workers wearing sombreros and ball caps emerge from the shadows and shuffle past boarded-up businesses in this tiny farm town. They converge on a dimly lit dirt lot outside Panaderia de Dios, a bakery sweetening the air with the aroma of Mexican cookies and bread as workers catch rides to the fields.  Little else is sweet in Huron, where jobs not displaced by automation in farming are mostly done by hand, and residents struggle to scrape by.  “As soon as you make the money, the money goes away,” Martin Castro said before spending the day repeatedly bending to slice cantaloupes from vines. “I don’t like the life.” ... ”  Read more from the East Bay Times here:  Survival trumps politics in poverty-hit Central Valley California farm town

EPA: Obama alumni return: “Wow, this is strange”:  “It was a weird day at the Trump EPA.  Former Obama administration officials streamed into the agency’s Washington headquarters. Many of them hadn’t been back since President Trump took office in 2017, and they approached the William Jefferson Clinton Federal Building with trepidation but also excitement. They handed their driver’s licenses to security guards and stepped through metal detectors in a building where their official badges used to allow them to breeze by.  “It’s kind of like going back to your old school, where it was such a big part of your life,” said Thomas Burke, who was EPA’s science adviser during the Obama years. “It’s been almost two years since the election, so going back, I have to say, ‘Wow, this is strange.'” He looked up and saw former colleagues waiting in line, too. … ”  Read more from E&E here:  EPA: Obama alumni return

In commentary this weekend …

Facing the coming flood with sense of optimismCaille Millner writes,After I read the United Nations’ new apocalyptic climate change report, I looked to see when my house was going to be underwater.  For this grim task, I set out to model different possibilities with an online sea level rise tool from Cal-Adapt, a public database for research from California scientists and researchers. (Isn’t the internet amazing? It provides those of us who believe in climate change with all the tools we need to find out when it’s going to swallow us whole, and those of us who aren’t willing to be convinced with all the conspiracy theories we need for political arguments.) ... ”  Read more from the San Francisco Chronicle here:  Facing the coming flood with sense of optimism

In regional news and commentary this weekend …

Nevada Irrigation District works to showcase its water stewardship projects: About 100 people gathered Wednesday evening to learn about efforts to restore and protect area watersheds during Nevada Irrigation District’s first watershed open house, according to a release.  “It’s all about the watershed,” said NID’s Environmental Resources Administrator Neysa King. “A watershed is the area of land that water flows through into a stream, river or lake. People, animals, plants and trees — all life — are dependent on healthy watersheds. Healthy watersheds provide our water which is key for a healthy, thriving community.” ... ”  Read more from The Union here:  Nevada Irrigation District works to showcase its water stewardship projects

Indian Wells Valley: Johnson cites aggressive schedule for GSP development:  “With a tightening deadline to submit a groundwater sustainability plan to the state, the IWV Groundwater Authority’s water resources manager plans to move more aggressively in the development process.  Steve Johnson, the water resources manager and Stetson Engineers, Inc. president, highlighted that fact Thursday during the Groundwater Authority’s board meeting.  Johnson said that given the Groundwater Authority’s tight timeline to complete and submit the sustainability plan, Stetson Engineers will be pursuing an aggressive schedule to get components done. … ”  Read more from the Ridgecrest Independent here:  Indian Wells Valley: Johnson cites aggressive schedule for GSP development

Indian Wells Valley Groundwater Authority talk health and safety, imported water: “Health and safety concerns became a topic of discussion at Thursday’s Indian Wells Valley Groundwater board meeting when Ridgecrest resident Nick Panzer broached the subject.  Speaking during public comment, Panzer presented a letter to board addressing possible water allocations down the road as the Groundwater Authority prepares its sustainability plan.  “We must end overdraft in our basin,” Panzer said. “That means we must reduce pumping from about 28,000 acre feet a year to about 7,000 acre-feet per year.” ... ”  Read more from the Ridgecrest Independent here:  Indian Wells Valley Groundwater Authority talk health and safety, imported water

How Long Beach residents can help L.A. County revamp the river:  “The Los Angeles River winds its way through 17 cities and impacts more than 10 million people who live in its environs, but its master plan hasn’t been updated in 22 years.  L.A. County is working to change that, and folks in and around Long Beach will have a chance to contribute their thoughts Wednesday, Oct. 24.  The county has developed a long-term process to update the plan, which it expects to complete in 2020. But before decisions are made that could influence natural ecosystems, recreational opportunities and even the homeless population, the county is hosting a series of community meetings to hear from local residents about what they would like to see. … ”  Read more from the OC Register here:  How Long Beach residents can help L.A. County revamp the river

Proposed partnership between Agua Caliente and Mission Springs Water District could shake up desert water management:  “The Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians and the Mission Springs Water District are exploring new ways to collaborate on water management and conservation issues, a partnership that comes as both entities are locked in separate lawsuits with the Coachella Valley’s two other water agencies.  The vague but wide-ranging agreement between the tribe, one of the valley’s most powerful political forces, and the district, which provides water to about 36,000 people in Desert Hot Springs and unincorporated areas north of Palm Springs, could shake up the water management and distribution status quo in the desert. … ”  Read more from The Desert Sun here:  Proposed partnership between Agua Caliente and Mission Springs Water District could shake up desert water management

San Diego:  Pure Water moves forward, construction beginning soon:  “San Diego’s goal to provide one-third of its own water by 2035 took a major step recently when the City Council approved a low interest loan that will finance nearly half of the first phase of the Pure Water program.  The $614 million loan comes from the EPA’s Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (WIFIA) and will cover 49 percent of the $1.25 billion project. … ”  Read more from the Mission Valley News here:  Pure Water moves forward, construction beginning soon

And lastly …

Mt. Rose Ski Tahoe opens to season-pass holders:  “Some Reno-area skiers and snowboarders will get their first taste of the slopes this weekend. … ”  Read more from the Santa Rosa Press Democrat here:  Mt. Rose Ski Tahoe opens to season-pass holders

Latest video from Oroville …

On October 18, 2018 at 6am, Kiewit began placing concrete for the final chute wall panel on the spillway. The wall is located next to the gates and took 8 hours to complete.

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

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: