Conservation Coalition Outlines Goals for Gov. Newsom’s “Water Portfolio” Plan
A coalition of 55 conservation, fishing, recreation, water policy, and environmental justice groups from throughout California, representing hundreds of thousands of Californians, sent a letter to state officials today thanking the Governor for his “…leadership in tackling California’s water issues.”
The letter expresses support of the Newsom’s Water Portfolio planning process and explains how the groups in the coalition plan to contribute to this new process.
Kate Poole, Senior Director for the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) said, “The state of California lacked a sensible water strategy for too long. The Newsom Administration’s water portfolio approach can show the world how fishable, swimmable, drinkable waters are the foundation of a sustainable water future.”
Jon Rosenfield, Senior Scientist with San Francisco Baykeeper said, “The governor’s approach can put us on the path to water sustainability that will provide safe drinking water for all Californians and the flows needed to protect our rivers, lakes, and bays. It would be a terrible irony if water conserved by Portfolio projects were soaked up by wasteful practices that bloat our demand for this limited resource. California doesn’t manage its water well —and that hurts our communities and wildlife.”
“To be successful, the Water Portfolio plan must accomplish two goals,” said Barbara Barrigan-Parrilla, executive director of Restore the Delta. “First, it needs to reduce reliance on Delta water use. Second, it must create regional water projects that solve water challenges experienced by environmental justice communities from the North Coast down to Chula Vista while producing local green jobs throughout the state.”
Excerpts from the Letter:
“The ‘water resilience portfolio’ (Water Portfolio) described in your April 29 Order offers the State the opportunity to set us on the course towards sustainable water resources management that would ensure fishable, swimmable, and drinkable waters for all Californians. Many of our organizations plan to engage with your administration to offer specific proposals for projects that will deploy limited water resources more efficiently.
“The old models of California water policy are failing to serve the public interest, even if they serve private interests. The Water Portfolio should establish a new model for managing California’s water, grounded in the public interest and long-term sustainability.”
“The two main concerns in developing a Portfolio Plan, according to the coalition are:
- Guaranteeing safe and affordable clean drinking water for all Californians; and
- Protecting and restoring healthy rivers and the Bay-Delta estuary, and the public benefits that they provide.”
The letter concludes:
“We look forward to working with your administration to help create a statewide Water Portfolio that establishes a new culture of water use in California built on sustainable policies and infrastructure.”
EPA Releases Cyanobacteria Assessment Network (CyAN) Mobile Application in the Google Play™ Store
From the US EPA:
Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released the Cyanobacteria Assessment Network (CyAN) mobile application (app), a tool that uses satellite data to alert users that a harmful algal bloom could be forming based on specific changes in the color of the water in more than 2,000 of the largest lakes and reservoirs across the United States.
“This mobile app is an important tool going into the summer months to help states and local communities track and manage harmful algal blooms,” said EPA Principal Deputy Assistant Administrator for Science for the Office of Research and Development and EPA Science Advisor Jennifer Orme-Zavaleta. “The most effective way of protecting people, pets, and livestock from the impacts of harmful algal blooms is knowing ahead of time to avoid water containing cyanobacteria. EPA is focused on providing communities with tools like this that can make water quality monitoring easier and more efficient.”
Cyanobacteria occur naturally in many bodies of water across the country. In small numbers, these algae are not a problem. But when cyanobacteria multiply they can form potentially toxic harmful algal blooms (or HABs).
In partnership with the National Aeronautics Space Administration, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the U.S. Geological Survey, EPA has been working to develop this early warning system using historical and current satellite data to help lake managers, water quality managers, and people swimming, fishing, or boating in lakes more quickly identify when there may be a bloom forming and avoid any potential health impacts to people, pets, livestock or the environment.
Though satellite data have been available for many years, it has not typically been used in decision-making because of the complicated data formats and the time burden it took to process and access the data.
The CyAN app developed by EPA gives users the ability to easily assess satellite derived cyanobacteria biomass concentrations occurring over larger lakes and reservoirs across the country. This app reduces the need for scientific expertise in satellite data processing, analysis and interpretation, and eliminates barriers to computer hardware requirements associated with the use of satellite data files. In this easy to use, customizable interface, users can rapidly distill critical water quality information for their communities.
The CyAN App is available for download in the Google Play™ store for Android™ devices.
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About News Worth Noting: News Worth Noting is a collection of press releases, media statements, and other materials produced by federal, state, and local government agencies, water agencies, and academic institutions, as well as non-profit and advocacy organizations. News Worth Noting also includes relevant legislator statements and environmental policy and legal analyses that are publicly released by law firms. If your agency or organization has an item you would like included here, please email it to Maven.