Delta tunnel: DWR rejects consideration of No Tunnel alternatives in EIR

Deirdre Des Jardins writes, “The Delta Conveyance Design and Construction Authority convened the 10th meeting of the Stakeholder Engagement Committee on Wednesday, July 22, 2020. Carrie Buckman, the Environmental Manager for the Department of Water Resources, gave a presentation on DWR’s screening of alternatives suggested in the scoping process.  Buckman summarized the Delta tunnel project objectives as follows … ”  Continue reading at the California Water Research blog here:  Delta tunnel: DWR rejects consideration of No Tunnel alternatives in EIR

Alternatives to the tunnel

The Save the California Delta Alliance writes, “The main topic of the July 22, 2020 Stakeholder Engagement Committee Meeting was a presentation about alternatives “considered”, presented by Carrie Buckman, the Department of Water Resources’ Environmental Program Manager. I purposely added quotes around the term “considered” in “alternatives ‘considered’,” because the report sounded like more of the same to me … an exercise required by the EIR NEPA/CEQA process, but not really being considered by the DWR as alternatives to their preferred tunnel. This was another very upsetting presentation to sit through. ... ”  Read more from Save the California Delta Alliance here:  Alternatives to the tunnel

Risk to Delta farmland

The Save the California Delta Alliance writes, “Thoughts from the July 27, 2020 Stakeholder Engagement Committee Meeting: A long presentation was provided about changes to the single tunnel (Delta Conveyance Project) plan looking at: (1) Reducing the footprint of what will remain afterwards (the size of the platform around each launch site) and (2) How to retain viable topsoil and after the project layer RTM (Muck) covered by topsoil to restore as much of the island as possible to useable farmland. That sounded positive – changes being considered due to inputs from Delta residents and farmers worried about the economic loss from so much Delta farmland being taken out of production forever.  … ”  Continue reading at Save the California Delta Alliance here:  Risk to Delta farmland

June 2020 Delta outflow – new state standard needed

Tom Cannon writes, “I recommended a new June Delta outflow standard of 10,000 cfs in a post on June 23 2020. This increase from the current standard of 7000 cfs would keep salt and Delta smelt out of the Central Delta and better maintain adequate water temperatures for emigrating Central Valley salmon smolts.  In this post, I consider the recommended 10,000 cfs value in the context of how the California Department of Water Resources (DWR) and the Bureau of Reclamation (Reclamation) estimate Delta outflow as they manage Delta hydrology and federal and state exports from the south Delta. This should further explain why an increase in the June Delta outflow standard is necessary. ... ”  Read more from the California Fisheries blog here:  June 2020 Delta outflow – new state standard needed

106 years of water supply reliability

Jay Lund writes, “Water supply reliability is a major policy and management goal in California, and in the rest of the world, today and since the beginning of time. The goals of reliable water supplies have grown from supporting human health, to supporting economic prosperity, to supporting healthy ecosystems, even when these goals conflict.  Since ancient times, water supply planning, engineering, and operations have sought to provide reliable water supplies. But until 106 years ago, there was little sophistication on exactly how reliable a water supply would be or should be. … ”  Read more from the California Water Blog here: 106 years of water supply reliability

Water right permitting options for groundwater recharge: Avoiding unintended consequences

Kate Fritz and Nell Green Nylen write, “Efforts to boost groundwater recharge are critical to making California’s limited, and increasingly volatile, water resources go further. Recharge is playing a growing role in maintaining groundwater as an effective drought reserve and in slowing or reversing the effects of years of unsustainable groundwater pumping. But implementing recharge projects is not easy. Water managers face a range of hurdles. Even with the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act (SGMA) on the books, and the increasing availability of technical assistance, local decision-makers are left mostly to their own ingenuity to figure out how to shore up groundwater resources to meet future needs. Many Groundwater Sustainability Agencies (GSAs) expect recharge to help them meet their responsibilities under SGMA. But the details of how they will implement recharge projects are often unclear. … ”  Read more from the Legal Planet here:  Water right permitting options for groundwater recharge: Avoiding unintended consequences

Now is the time to create a shared vision for water in the San Joaquin Valley

Thomas Esqueda writes, “Water.  Life as we know it cannot survive without water, and as we continue our exploration of space, scientists search for the presence of water on other planets. If there is water, there could be life, or maybe the planet could sustain life.  We search for usable water on other planets because we know it to be essential to sustaining life.  Despite the essential nature of water, in California, water management is so broken that every attempt to improve water management ends up in court. You would think that after more than 100 years of litigation, we would find a better – more lasting – approach to manage water for the world’s fifth largest economy and most productive agricultural region. … ”  Continue reading at Water Wrights here:  Now is the time to create a shared vision for water in the San Joaquin Valley

Re-managing flows in the Sacramento River basin to benefit salmon and other species

Todd Manley writes, “Water has been re-managed in the Sacramento River Basin over the past several decades in creative ways to provide essential pathways for spawning salmon and steelhead. Every major watercourse in the Sacramento River Basin has flow agreements that are designed to benefit salmon and steelhead, while balancing other uses of water for various beneficial purposes. Many of these agreements took decades of hard work by local and state leaders to develop and then implement.  These arrangements are captured in the recently-updated compilation of detailed descriptions of each flow agreement that has re-managed flows to benefit fish in the region. … ”  Read more from the Northern California Water Association blog here: Re-managing flows in the Sacramento River basin to benefit salmon and other species

Giants in the rice fields

Jim Morris writes, “Head north of Sacramento along any of the major freeways, you’ve likely seen the lush green rice fields with ubiquitous wildlife such as herons, hawks and egrets. What may surprise you is just how diverse the rice field ecosystem is – and the unseen giants at home in those fields.  Nearly 230 wildlife species depend on Sacramento Valley rice fields for food and a resting place, including the giant gartersnake, a threatened species.  Although it has “giant” in its name, this creature is, at most, five-feet long. These snakes are heavily dependent on rice fields for their survival; having lost most of their earlier habitat – traditional wetlands, which have been lost over the generations. … ”  Read more from Ingrained here:  Giants in the rice fields

Forging connections to provide safe drinking water

Lori Pottinger writes, “Providing a reliable source of drinking water is a challenge for many small water systems in the San Joaquin Valley, where dropping groundwater levels, aging systems, and water quality problems are acute. Researchers at California State University, Fresno, reviewed the feasibility of connecting a dozen small water systems to the City of Fresno’s system—part of a larger effort under the State Water Board to facilitate such consolidations. We talked to Laura Ramos and Sarge Green of Fresno State’s California Water Institute about this effort.  PPIC: What problem is this project trying to solve? … ”  Read more from the PPIC here: Forging connections to provide safe drinking water

Featured image credit: Leaky Faucets, Statue Square, Hong Kong by Wenjie Zhang

About the Blog Round-up: The Blog Round-up is a weekly journey through the wild and varied tapestry of blog commentary, incorporating the good, the bad, the ugly, and sometimes just plain bizarre viewpoints existing on the internet. Viewpoints expressed are those of the authors and not necessarily my own; inclusion of items here does not imply my endorsement of their positions. Items are chosen to express a wide range of viewpoints, and are added at the editor’s discretion. While posts with obvious factual errors are excluded, please note that no attempt is made on my part to verify or fact check the information bloggers present, so caveat emptor – let the buyer beware.

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