BLOG ROUND-UP: Another water year and another stupid drought resolution; New water source could solve drought crisis; DWR 2006 study: “too much risk” taken with reservoir operations; Testing for links between fall outflow and Delta Smelt; and more …

Another water year and another stupid drought resolution

Random Lengths News writes, “The 1st of October in California is notable as the beginning of the New Water Year. And right on cue, just like the classic New Year’s song Auld Lang Syne extols “Should old acquaintance be forgot, and never brought to mind,” we make water conservation resolutions that are quickly forgotten after the first rains and repeat the same insanity year-after-year. For California’s continued economic prosperity, let’s stop this insanity before it’s too late. Water experts agree that today’s water crisis is bringing California to the brink of an economic catastrophe. As improbable as it may seem, especially after weathering massive earthquakes, fires, pandemics and other disasters, California’s economic undoing may very well come from the scarcity of water – an economic problem previously only associated with Developing Third World Countries. … ”  Continue reading from Random Lengths News here:  Another water year and another stupid drought resolution

Why Californians aren’t meeting the state’s call for more water conservation

Richard McCann writes, “Governor Gavin Newsom called for a voluntary reduction in water use of 15% in July in response to the second year of a severe drought. The latest data from the State Water Resources Control Board showed little response on the part of the citizenry and the media lamented the lack of effort. However, those reports overlooked a major reason for a lack of further conservation. … ”  Continue reading at Economics Outside the Cube here: Why Californians aren’t meeting the state’s call for more water conservation

New water source could solve drought crisis

Ellen Brown writes, “Lack of fresh water is now a global crisis. According to the United Nations, some 800 million people are without clean water, and 40% of the world’s population is impacted by drought. … The ideal solution would be new water flows to add to the hydrologic cycle, and promising new scientific discoveries and technologies are holding out that possibility. … Oceans of water are beneath our feet, and new technologies are extracting it economically without ecological damage. ... ”  Read more from the LA Progressive here: New water source could solve drought crisis

DWR 2006 study: “too much risk” taken with reservoir operations

Deirdre Des Jardins writes, “In 2006, for the first California Climate Assessment, DWR published a study of operations of the State Water Project and Central Valley Project with climate change. The report was titled, “Progress on Incorporating Climate Change Into Management of California’s Water Resources.“  DWR’s 2006 modeling predicted the current crisis, with Shasta, Folsom, and Oroville reservoirs being drawn down to dead pool. DWR’s modelers noted, “[t]oo much risk was taken in the delivery allocation decisions… and not enough storage was carried into the drought periods as a result.”   With respect to shortages, they stated … ”  Continue reading at the California Water Research blog here:  DWR 2006 study: “too much risk” taken with reservoir operations

FLOATing Away – Testing for links between fall outflow and Delta Smelt – A play in three acts

It was a dark and stormy night. Actually, it wasn’t stormy, which was the problem. The curtain rises on the intrepid scientists of the Interagency Ecological Program (IEP) in 2016 as California’s drought continues. They are wrestling with a critical question: Is high fall outflow the key to improving habitat conditions for Delta Smelt and benefiting the population? Scientists and resource managers in the San Francisco Estuary are desperately trying to save the endangered Delta Smelt, but the best research to date had resulted in “It’s complicated” (Sommer et al. 2007). However, many studies pointed to high Delta outflow (freshwater flowing out of the estuary) was an important part of the story (IEP-MAST et al. 2015; Thomson et al. 2010). Delta Smelt had positive population growth rates only twice since 2002, and both years had high flows.  Enter from stage left, our heroes: The Flow Alteration Management Analysis and Synthesis Team (FLOAT-MAST). … ”  Continue reading at the IEP website here: FLOATing Away – Testing for links between fall outflow and Delta Smelt – A play in three acts

Poor First Indicators of 2021 Winter-Run Salmon Fry Production

Tom Cannon writes, “The first indicators of winter-run salmon spawning survival in the Sacramento River in 2021 indicate poor production, as expected. The drought and Reclamation’s operations in 2021 have provided production levels on par with 2014 and 2015, the last two critical drought years.  Red Bluff screw-trap collections since August 1, 2021 have been very low. The spawning delay in 2021 due to high spring water temperatures and low flows may be delaying downstream movement. However, outmigration patterns are similar to 2014 and 2015. Even 2020, a dry year with poor production, had numbers five times higher than 2021 to date. … ”  Read more from the California Fisheries blog here: Poor First Indicators of 2021 Winter-Run Salmon Fry Production

Tales from the Water Wars – The Passing Game

Deirdre Des Jardins writes, “The State Water Resources Control Board’s WaterFix Water Right Change Petition Hearing took place from July of 2016 to September of 2018. It was the largest water rights hearing in 50 years, involving over 110 parties and over 85 attorneys. I participated in the entire hearing. In addition to testifying on impacts of climate change, operations modeling, and reservoir operations for drought, I played “truth squad,”, doing cross-examination of DWR’s witnesses on key scientific, technical, and regulatory issues. And I helped out friendly experts by asking clarifying cross-examination questions on their testimony. … ”  Read more from the California Water Research blog here: Tales from the Water Wars – The Passing Game

Kathryn Sorensen on getting real in the Colorado River Basin

Jon Fleck writes, “At last week’s Getches-Wilkinson Center conference on Colorado River stuff, I had the privilege of moderating a panel with the provocative title “Time to Get Real”.  The opening remarks from Kathryn Sorensen of Arizona State University seemed worth repeating, and she kindly gave me permission to post on the blog (the pictures were her slide deck, accompanying the remarks):  “John Fleck asked each of us to consider the following:  What does getting real in the Colorado River Basin mean?  I’ve got three things ... ”  Read more from the Inkstain blog here: Kathryn Sorensen on getting real in the Colorado River Basin

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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