A month of high exports pulls salmon and smelt to delta pumps: Tom Cannon writes, “Increased Delta exports by the federal Bureau of Reclamation in early April resulted in increased salvage of salmon and longfin smelt at the Central Valley Project’s south Delta Tracy Pumping Plant. Salmon smolts salvaged were predominately from the San Joaquin spring-run salmon recovery program hatchery (Figures 1 and 2). Longfin smelt salvage increased in mid-April (Figure 3) as young longfin reached salvageable size (~25 mm). Salvage at the State Water Project was much lower in April as the California Department of Water Resources’ (DWR) reduced exports to try to offset the impacts of Reclamation’s increased pumping (Figures 2 and 3). … ” Read more from the California Fisheries blog here: A month of high exports pulls salmon and smelt to delta pumps
Farmer Appreciation: The problem isn’t the people, the problem is the representatives the people elect, and the unelected bureaucrats they appoint. Families Protecting the Valley writes, “The headline in Sunday’s Fresno Bee reads: Farmers in California, Across U.S. Gain Appreciation Amid Coronavirus. We hope it’s true. People should be gaining an appreciation for farmers and what they do. The problem isn’t the people, the problem is the representatives the people elect, and the unelected bureaucrats they appoint, especially here in California. We have written many times about how much water has been taken from farmers in our Central Valley over the past 30-years. Here’s a reminder ... ” Read more from Families Protecting the Valley here: Farmer Appreciation: The problem isn’t the people, the problem is the representatives the people elect, and the unelected bureaucrats they appoint.
Bordeau’s CalMatters op-ed is wrong. 1/3: On the Public Record writes, “William Bordeau wrote a piece for CalMatters, saying that CA water policy is restricting food production in the San Joaquin Valley and the COVID 19 emergency is revealing the importance of producing our own food. Cora Kammeyer answered that that’s not actually true about water policy restricting food production in the SJV. I have two different problems with Bordeau’s essay. … ” Continue reading at On the Public Record here: Bordeau’s CalMatters op-ed is wrong. 1/3 To continue the series, use links at the top or go here: Growers are not growing food to feed people. (second) and CA food security. (Part c.)
Farming and ranching are essential for California’s economy and ecology: The Northern California Water Association writes, “In a recent commentary in Cal Matters: “Toilet paper short, food abundant,” Dan Walters has made some poignant observations on the importance and value of farming and ranching in California and he describes how the pandemic has brought to the forefront the importance of agriculture to our daily lives and a civil society. As the Governor and the state’s leaders face the daunting task to rebuild our economy, they will benefit from Mr. Walter’s advice and wisdom as a keen observer on California policy. … ” Read more from the NCWA blog here: Farming and ranching are essential for California’s economy and ecology
A dairyman’s view on water: “Geoff Vandenheuvel writes, “In this already stressful time for agriculture and our country, Governor Gavin Newsom decided to file for a preliminary injunction against the permits that allow the federal Central Valley Project (CVP) to deliver water out of the Delta. This is in addition to the state issuing for the first time their own permits, separate from the federal permits for Delta water pumping, of the State Water Project. The new state permit severely restricts water exports as well as substantially increasing the fees that State Water Contractors must pay for environmental mitigation. The press release headline issued by the radical Natural Resources Defense Council says it all: “California Delivers Blow to Trump Administration’s Plan for Extinction in the Bay Delta.” … ” Read more from Water Wrights here: A dairyman’s view on water
On the farm, every day is Earth Day: The California Farm Water Coalition writes, “Every Californian knows that water policies should be balanced to help support fish populations and the environment, productive farmland, businesses, and people. That’s not happening because decade-old science is embedded in a top-down regulatory system that lacks the ability to incorporate new science as it becomes available. The good news is there is a clear path forward that will lead to a more secure water future for all Californians. Science has been telling us for some time that fish need more than water to survive – habitat improvements, predator control and food supply are also critically important. … ” Read more from the California Farm Water Coalition here: On the farm, every day is Earth Day
Desperate to keep Delta tunnel engineering design schedule, DCA pressures Stakeholder Engagement Committee members to continue meeting: Dierdre Des Jardins writes, “On Wednesday, April 22, 2020, the Delta tunnel Stakeholder Engagement Committee (SEC) met to consider the design for the Southern Forebay proposed by the Delta Conveyance Design and Construction Authority. Prior to the meeting, several Stakeholder Engagement Committee members had written to the Delta Conveyance Design and Construction Authority, requesting postponement of further SEC meetings until Governor Newsom’s shelter in place order is lifted. ... ” Read more from the California Water Research blog here: Desperate to keep Delta tunnel engineering design schedule, DCA pressures Stakeholder Engagement Committee members to continue meeting
They said, “This time would be different.” Save the California Delta Alliance writes, “We first met two of the new Delta Conveyance Design and Construction Authority (DCA) reps in October, at a Delta meeting of the Delta Activists (groups throughout the Delta fighting the tunnel project). The meeting was held at the Delta Farmer’s Market at the corner of Highways 160 and 12, hosted by Ken and Laura Scheidegger. One of the two DCA reps was Nazli Parvizi. At that October 2019 meeting, Nazli assured folks that the DCA’s process would be different from what we’d gone through during the prior BDCP and WaterFix tunnel projects (FOR TEN YEARS!), where Delta voices were never heard. We were told that the DCA was forming a Stakeholder’s Committee to “listen to” the Delta folks and mold the project into something of value for everyone. … ” Read more from the Save the California Delta Alliance here: They said, “This time would be different.”
Landowner-conservation partnerships: a better future for the Sacramento Valley: The Northern California Water Association writes, “There are many wonderful attributes in the Sacramento Valley–yet, the secret ingredient as we look to the future is the amazing landowner-conservation partnerships that have emerged in the region. As we celebrate Earth Day this week, the great quote from Aldo Leopold–one of the founders of America’s conservation movement–rings true in the Sacramento Valley: “Conservation will ultimately boil down to rewarding the private landowner who conserves the public interest.” Many of these partnerships are featured in a new series highlighting the human dimension and the personal stories that underlie and support these partnerships. … ” Read more from the NCWA blog here: Landowner-conservation partnerships: a better future for the Sacramento Valley
Phantom Predator – Striped Bass? Tom Cannon writes, “In a recent 2020 essay in SAN FRANCISCO ESTUARY & WATERSHED SCIENCE, authors Nobriga and Smith describe striped bass as a “phantom predator” that for a century has been secretly driving down their “naïve prey,” the Delta smelt. The authors hypothesize that Delta smelt were much more abundant that the earliest regular monitoring data would indicate, and that striped bass did most of this damage to the Delta smelt population before there was widespread monitoring of either Delta smelt or striped bass. The authors’ analyses, interpretations, and conclusions have a major omission. ... ” Read more from the California Fisheries blog here: Phantom Predator – Striped Bass?
From being an engineer to researching nature’s engineers: ““When I came face to face with beaver dams for the first time, I had what can only be described as a transformative experience,” says Emily Fairfax, an assistant professor of environmental science and resource management at California State University, Channel Islands. While leading a canoe trip through the Boundary Waters of northern Minnesota, she encountered what she describes as “just these enormous, impressive features” – created by beavers. “You truly realize how sturdy beaver dams are while dragging your canoe over them,” she adds, laughing. “They are incredible from an engineering perspective.” ... ” Read more from The Confluence here: From being an engineer to researching nature’s engineers
My Ten Cents: Groundwater – Still ‘Secret, Occult, and Concealed’? SCOTUS Says ‘No!’ and ‘Functional Equivalent’: Michael Campana writes, “In 1861 the Ohio Supreme Court ruled (Frazier v. Brown) that movement of groundwater was ‘so secret, occult and concealed’ that it could not be regulated by the law. That decision was overturned in 1984 by the OSC. … Many people did not get the memo. Some of my hydrogeological colleagues (jokingly) would like to argue that Frazier v. Brown is still true and that the practice of groundwater hydrology is still a ‘black art’ of sorts – sort of like my PhD dissertation. ... ” Continue reading at Water Wired here: My Ten Cents: Groundwater – Still ‘Secret, Occult, and Concealed’? SCOTUS Says ‘No!’ and ‘Functional Equivalent’
Supreme Court ruling finds old, new middle ground on Clean Water Act’s application to groundwater: Thomas Harter, Steph Tai, and Karrigan Bork write, “In 1972, the U.S. Clean Water Act (CWA) created a permit system for point source discharges to navigable waters of the United States – rivers, lakes, and coastal waters – with the goal of restoring and protecting their water quality. Typically, these permits are issued by the U.S. EPA or through state agencies to dischargers of wastewater, e.g., from urban and industrial wastewater treatment plants and to other dischargers of potentially contaminated water that reach streams by a pipe or similar conveyance. The goal was to provide some degree of regulatory oversight over such discharges. In California, the State Water Resources Control Board implements the federal Clean Water Act using its authority under the Porter-Cologne Water Quality Control Act (Water Code, §13000 et seq.). Under the CWA, neither EPA nor the states are required to issue permits for pollutant discharges into groundwater or to nonpoint source dischargers. ... ” Read more from the California Water Blog here: Supreme Court ruling finds old, new middle ground on Clean Water Act’s application to groundwater
Clean water in a time of coronavirus: tackling the crisis in California: “The COVID-19 crisis is bringing into the spotlight the disparities and hardships that our most vulnerable communities face every day. People of color and economically disadvantaged communities have long been known to be disproportionately impacted by pollution and suffer higher rates of many health problems, and it is no surprise that recent headlines report they are also dying from COVID-19 at higher rates. In California’s most productive agricultural regions, the Central Valley and Central Coast, our essential farmworkers continue to work the fields to bring food to our tables as most of us shelter in our homes. … ” Read more from the American Rivers blog here: Clean water in a time of coronavirus: tackling the crisis in California