DAILY DIGEST, 12/1: DWR initiates $100M program to repair water conveyance facilities; Water Board releases draft regs prohibiting wasteful water use; DWR recommends indoor water use standard to legislature; Valuing water rights in eminent domain; and more …
EVENT: Water Well & Pumping Technology Workshop from 8am to 4:30pm in Lakewood, CA. This one-day American Ground Water Trust Workshop provides a great learning opportunity for water utility managers, water operators, owners of high-yield wells, well contractors, groundwater engineers and consultants who design wells, select pumps and assess the potential of aquifers. Click here to register.
PUBLIC MEETING: Direct Potable Reuse (DPR) Criteria Expert Panel from 10am to 12pm. Meeting Objectives: Present the Panel’s status on their review of the draft DPR criteria; presentations from DDW staff on DPR criteria; and provide time for public comments. Click here for full agenda and remote access information.
WEBINAR: Water Recycling: Process, Politics and Implementation from 12pm to 1pm. Join UCI CEE to learn more about the Orange County Water District’s Groundwater Replenishment System (GWRS) expansion, treatment, technology and public acceptability of water recycling. Click here to register.
WEBINAR: Water Wednesday – Flow with the Slow: Groundwater from 12pm to 12:30pm. Usually out-of-sight and often out-of-mind, groundwater is an important source of water for millions of Californians. Join DWR Engineering Geologist Kyle Hardage to learn where our groundwater comes from and how it moves through space and time. Watch on YouTube or join on Zoom.
Lunch MAR at 12:30pm: DWR’s Flood-Managed Aquifer Recharge (Flood-MAR) programwould like to hear from people about their Flood-MAR experiences during the last year, as well as intentions for 2022. Click here to register.
WEBINAR: Urban Water Conservation in a Drought from 4:30pm to 6:00pm. Panel will discuss how has urban water conservation evolved since the 2018 Water Conservation Legislation passed; what are we doing differently now from the last drought; what do we need to know about water use and water users to become more prepared for longer and/or more extreme droughts; What can water experts contribute to make Conservation a Way of Life; and how do the burdens and benefits of conservation fall, fairly or not. Click here to register.
DWR initiates $100M funding program to repair Valley conveyance facilities …
DWR initiates $100 million funding program to rehabilitate four major water conveyance facilities
“Today, the California Department of Water Resources initiated a $100 million funding program to restore capacity to portions of the California Aqueduct, San Luis Canal, Delta-Mendota Canal, and Friant-Kern Canal lost to land subsidence occurring during the last several decades. “Fixing these canals is an important foundational piece to ensure a reliable and climate resilient water supply for California,” said DWR Director Karla Nemeth. “It enables us to move water during very wet conditions, which will be essential to adapting to more extreme weather. Restoring capacity in our existing infrastructure provides a critical link in diversifying water supplies by supporting groundwater replenishment throughout the Central Valley and water recycling projects in Southern California. It’s a prudent investment in our water future.” … ” Read more from DWR here: DWR initiates $100 million funding program to rehabilitate four major water conveyance facilities
Statement by Senator Melissa Hurtado on DWR initiating funding program to repair water conveyance systems
Senator Melissa Hurtado (D-Sanger) released the following statement regarding the California Department of Water Resources announcement that they have initiated a $100 million funding program to rehabilitate four major water conveyance facilities: “With food prices at an all-time high, today’s announcement is a major win for consumers, farmers, and 30 million Californians who rely on Central Valley water for clean water,” said Senator Hurtado. “This $100 Million investment is a major milestone, and a significant down payment towards a sustainable future, but this is just a start. California is still experiencing an epic drought and desperately needs additional funding to provide a safe water and food supply now and in the future. I will continue fighting to ensure California’s vital water infrastructure is fully funded, and will be asking for additional funding next legislative session.”
SB 559 sponsors respond to DWR $100 million funding program to begin repairing subsidence damage to four of California’s most important water delivery systems
The State Water Contractors, the Friant Water Authority, and the San Luis-Delta Mendota Water Authority issued the following statement: ““This first $100 million isn’t just an investment in water infrastructure, it is a down payment on California’s future. We know that much more funding is necessary to restore the full capacity of these facilities, and we applaud the Governor and the Legislature’s commitment to responsible investments in California’s future, specifically by doing the necessary work of investing in the current and future viability of the water delivery infrastructure that will always be necessary to meet California’s water needs. While this initial funding will help to leverage federal and local dollars so that repairs can begin, additional funding along with the political will to see it through will be necessary if we are to truly meet the water supply challenges ahead of us. We have learned that droughts and flooding no longer come in cycles, instead they are simply our new normal. This initial funding and the leadership from elected officials like Governor Newsom, State Senator Hurtado and the San Joaquin Valley delegation, and federal officials like Senator Feinstein and Congressman Costa, represent actionable steps California must take if we are to adapt to that new normal and deliver on the promise of clean, affordable water for all.”
State money for canal fixes set to start flowing
“The state Department of Water Resources opened the spigot Tuesday on the first $100 million, of $200 million, budgeted over the next two fiscal years to fix several key canals that have sunk because of groundwater pumping. Subsidence has reduced carrying capacity in the canals from 15% up to 60% in the Friant-Kern Canal, which brings water from Millerton Lake near Fresno to farms and towns along the eastern flank of the San Joaquin Valley all the way to Arvin in southern Kern County. Reduced capacity is acutely problematic in heavy water years. Without the ability to bring more water into the valley in those wet years, water districts and towns lose out on the chance to sock away groundwater to prepare for dry years. … ” Read more from SJV Water here: State money for canal fixes set to start flowing
Calif. water officials roll out $100mil in funding for Valley canal fixes
“Four key San Joaquin Valley water arteries are set to see an infusion of cash to improve their ability to deliver water to farms and communities, California water officials announced Monday. The Department of Water Resources announced it would commit to spending $100 million for capacity repairs on three key conveyance systems: the California Aqueduct, the San Luis Canal, the Delta-Mendota Canal, and the Friant-Kern Canal. Each has seen its water delivery capacity diminish due to land subsidence as Valley communities and farms have relied upon heavy groundwater pumping to keep farm production and communities supplied with water resources. … ” Read more from the San Joaquin Valley Sun here: Calif. water officials roll out $100mil in funding for Valley canal fixes
State says it will deliver $100 million for Valley canal repairs
“In an announcement made Monday, the agency said that the goal is to restore the canals’ carrying capacity. Portions of the California Aqueduct, San Luis Canal, Delta-Mendota Canal, and Friant-Kern Canal can’t convey as much water as they used to because of land subsidence. The four canals collectively deliver water to more than 29 million people, 2.9 million acres of farmland, and 130,000 acres of wetlands. The completed projects will restore up to 50% of the capacity of the canals over the next 10 years, DWR said. “Fixing these canals is an important foundational piece to ensure a reliable and climate-resilient water supply for California,” said DWR Director Karla Nemeth in a news release. “It enables us to move water during very wet conditions, which will be essential to adapting to more extreme weather. … ” Read more from GV Wire here: State says it will deliver $100 million for Valley canal repairs
State allocates $39.2 million for Friant Kern Canal repairs
“On Monday, the State Department of Water Resources allocated $39.2 million to the repairs of the Friant-Kern Canal. The $39.2 million is part of $100 million that was included in this year’s state budget for the repairs of four of the state’s major water resources: the California Aqueduct, the San Luis Canal, the Delta-Mendota Canal and the Friant-Kern Canal. A total of $37 million was allocated to both the California Aqueduct and San Luis Canal and $23.8 million was allocated to the Delta-Mendota Canal. The $100 million is a down payment of sorts on State Senator Melissa Hurtado’s Senate Bill 559, which proposes to allocated $785 million for the repairs of the California Aqueduct, the Delta-Mendota Canal and the Friant-Kern Canal. SB559 would allocated $308 million for the Friant-Kern Canal. … ” Read more from the Porterville Recorder here: State allocates $39.2 million for Friant Kern Canal repairs
Other statewide water news today …
State Water Board releases draft emergency regulations prohibiting wasteful water use
“As California continues to face severe drought conditions exacerbated by climate change, today the State Water Resources Control Board (State Water Board) released a draft emergency regulation to prohibit water waste and bolster water conservation. Members of the public can comment on the draft before the State Water Board considers it for adoption early next year. If passed, the regulation will make wasteful water practices, such as excessive irrigation causing runoff, using potable water for street cleaning, or irrigating landscapes within 48 hours of measurable rainfall, a violation for all Californians, including businesses and institutions. Local water districts would be expected to enforce the regulations, and violations could result in fines. In addition, the regulation would allow the State Water Board to prevent homeowners associations from restricting water conservation measures, like installing drought-tolerant landscaping. … ”
Click here to continue reading this press release from the State Water Board.
State agencies recommend indoor residential water use standard to legislature
“The Department of Water Resources (DWR) and the State Water Resources Control Board (State Water Board) have submitted a report to the Legislature recommending that urban water suppliers achieve an indoor water use efficiency standard of 55 gallons per capita per day by 2023, declining to 47 gallons per day by 2025, and 42 gallons by 2030 and beyond. If adopted by the Legislature, the standards recommended by DWR and the State Water Board would be implemented at the water supplier level and would not apply to individual customers. The report, required under water conservation legislation enacted in 2018 (Assembly Bill 1668 and Senate Bill 606), is intended to inform the Legislature as it considers next steps to advance progressive and achievable indoor residential water use standards. The report notes that the current statewide median indoor residential water use is 48 gallons per capita per day, and that a quarter of California households already use less than 42 gallons per capita per day. … ” Read more from DWR here: State agencies recommend indoor residential water use standard to legislature
Ag lenders stick to the fundamentals in time of drought
“The worsening drought is cause for concern for all. But for agricultural loan lenders, it’s all about risk management. Keith Hesterberg, CEO of Fresno Madera Farm Credit, said that although the experience in dealing with drought hasn’t changed, the surrounding issues have grown more complicated. “Water scarcity, not new in the Valley. But I think the complexity of the water challenges certainly have increased,” Hesterberg said. Lenders need to understand the water basin that growers are operating in and the underlying diversity of their operations. Water operations can change year to year depending on the challenges for the given season. ... ” Read more from The Business Journal here: Ag lenders stick to the fundamentals in time of drought
The deadly effects illegal marijuana grows have on water and wildlife
“Illegal marijuana grows continue to show up in our national forests but removing the sites is only half the battle, according to Ryan Henson, Senior Policy Director with the California Wilderness Coalition. Henson says, “Cartels are able to get away with establishing these grows. By now, there are literally thousands of them out there, even when they are found out, mostly the marijuana is removed and not the waste.” Waste like illegal pesticides. In 2018, 90% of sites had them, according to the Cannabis Removal On Public Lands Project. … ” Read more from Bakersfield Now here: The deadly effects illegal marijuana grows have on water and wildlife
Valuing water rights in eminent domain
“As water becomes scarcer in California, public agencies are looking for new sources and opportunities to provide water to their communities. When the government identifies those water sources but confronts unwilling sellers, eminent domain sometimes becomes necessary. This is currently taking place in the Antelope Valley, where the Rosamond Community Services District recently approved the adoption of a resolution of necessity to acquire water rights from agricultural land by eminent domain. The District is facing shortages in its future water supplies and it is limited in the amount of groundwater it may use to serve its customers. … ” Read more from Nossaman here: Valuing water rights in eminent domain
California Water Service takes action to relieve financially strapped customers of water bill debt accumulated during pandemic
“California Water Service (Cal Water) has filed an application with the State Water Resources Control Board to help provide financial support to customers who were unable to pay their water bills during the coronavirus pandemic. The funding, which Cal Water advocated to help secure, will enable the utility to forgive past-due balances incurred by its customers between March 2020 and mid-June 2021. In the application, Cal Water requested $20.8 million in relief for customers across its California service areas. The company anticipates receiving final approval by the State Water Resources Control Board around the first of the year. Customers do not have to apply for the debt forgiveness; if approved, Cal Water will apply any credits to affected customers’ accounts within 60 days after receiving funding from the state, expected to be in early 2022. ... ” Read more from Yahoo Finance here: California Water Service takes action to relieve financially strapped customers of water bill debt accumulated during pandemic
Sierra Nevada snowpack could largely vanish by 2040s as climate warms, scientists say
“Could climate change destroy the Sierra Nevada snowpack? A team led by scientists at Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory says the snowpack — a critical piece of California’s delicate water delivery system, not to mention a source of winter recreation for Northern Californians — could essentially vanish for years at a time as the warming climate erodes snowfall. The scientists’ newly-published study doesn’t say snow would disappear forever. Instead, it predicts that much of the Sierra would experience five straight years of “low-to-no snow” starting in the late 2040s. The mountain region could endure 10 straight years with little or no snow beginning in the late 2050s. ... ” Continue reading at the Sacramento Bee here: Sierra Nevada snowpack could largely vanish by 2040s as climate warms, scientists say
Press release: Backed by new research, environmental groups demand end to corporate water abuse
“48 organizations have signed on to a letter demanding Governor Newsom address California’s water crisis with specific actions targeted at the corporate abuse of public water resources. While drought ravages the state and freshwater supplies dwindle, more than 1 million Californians lack access to clean drinking water. Wells in dry and under-resourced areas like the Central Valley are predicted to go dry at astonishing rates. Yet unsustainable amounts of California’s water are being allocated to multibillion dollar industries like fossil fuel production, industrial dairy operation and almond crop cultivation. … ” Read more from Food & Water Watch here: Press release: Backed by new research, environmental groups demand end to corporate water abuse
Wildfire restoration: Mapping a climate-resilient Camp Fire recovery plan
” … Trees can’t just pick up their roots and move, and a natural migration could take centuries. It’s up to foresters to plant for what the forest wants to become, a practice known as “assisted migration.” “Assisted migration is a no-brainer for our organization, knowing that forests need to adapt,” Rempel said. “In the Camp Fire area, because of its low elevation, it’s quickly turning from dense mixed conifer forest into a place that wants to be more oak and grassland and chaparral and gray pine.” Analysts at American Forests apply models that use spatial analytics to consider species tolerances and soil types, along with climate forecasts about heat and rainfall, to predict what plants will want to live in a place, far into the future. This level of climate action requires a detailed map to understand what exists, the conditions best suited for each plant, and where similar conditions can be found elsewhere. GIS is used to perform this suitability analysis, with predictions that improve with more data. ... ” Read the full article at ESRI here: Wildfire restoration: Mapping a climate-resilient Camp Fire recovery plan
During an historic drought, higher temperatures helped a beetle kill more California pine trees
“A new study shows climate change can have cascading effects on forests. Using computer modeling, researchers from North Carolina State University, the Los Alamos National Laboratory and other institutions found increased temperatures during an historic drought in California contributed to the death of large numbers of giant pine trees by speeding up the life cycle of a tree-killing beetle. Published in the journal Global Change Biology, the study found a nearly 30 percent increase in ponderosa pine (Pinus ponderosa) tree death during California’s 2012–2015 drought due to attacks from the western bark beetle. Researchers said the findings highlight how climate change can compound threats forests face, and raise questions about their ability to act as reservoirs for greenhouse gases. “This has huge implications for how we manage forests—not just in California, but everywhere,” said study co-author Robert Scheller, professor of forestry and environmental resources at North Carolina State University. ... ” Continue reading at PhysOrg here: During an historic drought, higher temperatures helped a beetle kill more California pine trees
More than 400 toxic sites in California are at risk of flooding from sea level rise
“When Lucas Zucker talks about sea level rise in California, his first thoughts aren’t about waves crashing onto fancy homes in Orange County, nor the state’s most iconic beaches shrinking year after year. What worries him most are the three power plants looming over the Oxnard coast, and the toxic waste site that has languished there for decades. There are also two naval bases, unknown military dumps and a smog-spewing port. Just one flood could unleash a flow of industrial chemicals and overwhelm his working-class, mostly Latino community. “The coast of California is marked by massive inequality. People don’t realize that because they go to Malibu, they go to Santa Barbara. Those are the beaches that people see and are familiar with,” said Zucker, a longtime advocate for environmental justice. “They don’t think of places like Wilmington, West Long Beach, Barrio Logan, West Oakland, Richmond, Bayview-Hunters Point. You can name all these communities, and it’s the same story.” … ” Read more from the LA Times here: More than 400 toxic sites in California are at risk of flooding from sea level rise
The American West went through climate hell in 2021. But there’s still hope
“To visualize the hellishness of the climate crisis in 2021, look no further than General Sherman, the world’s largest tree, wrapped in fire-resistant foil to protect the legendary giant sequoia from flames burning a path of destruction through the Sierra Nevada. … The sight of General Sherman wrapped in foil this fall was a cry for help. It was also a sign that the American West has entered a dangerous new era of hotter heat waves, ever-more-brutal droughts and a growing threat of violent extremism on public lands. There’s still hope for the future. But in a part of the country mythologized for its rugged individualism, going it alone will be a recipe for disaster, climate experts say. States and tribes, big cities and rural towns, liberals and conservatives alike will need to cooperate. … ” Read more from the LA Times here: The American West went through climate hell in 2021. But there’s still hope
MET BAY DELTA COMMITTEE: Update on interim operations plan for SWP/CVP, voluntary agreements
At the November meeting of Metropolitan’s Bay-Delta Committee, Bay-Delta Initiatives Manager Steven Arakawa briefed the committee members on recent communications from elected officials and others regarding the operations of the federal and state water projects and the voluntary agreements.
Updated interactive map showing groundwater levels in the Upper Klamath Basin aids water, land managers
“The U.S. Geological Survey recently upgraded an interactive online map that provides information on groundwater conditions in the upper Klamath Basin. Resource managers can use the mapper to identify trends in groundwater levels; this is especially important during droughts. The map now includes all the monitored wells in the basin and incorporates updated databases from the states of Oregon and California. “The information available from this website shows the condition of aquifers in the Upper Klamath Basin and can help people see the changes in water levels over time,” said Dar Crammond, the director of the USGS Oregon Water Science Center. ... ” Read more from the USGS here: Updated interactive map showing groundwater levels in the Upper Klamath Basin aids water, land managers
Shasta Dam still at 25% capacity after second-driest summer
“Despite the wet start to this year’s rain season, Shasta Dam remains at only 25% capacity. “So three-quarters of the lake is empty; we need some really significant winter storms back-to-back-to-back to help fill this lake,” said Don Bader, the area manager at Shasta Dam. Bader says they would like to have the dam typically around 60% full during this time of year. He says the dam depends mostly on rainfall. … ” Read more from KRCR here: Shasta Dam still at 25% capacity after second-driest summer
Vineyard technology working to combat the Napa Valley water crisis
“In a response to the ongoing drought, Napa Valley vineyards are taking advantage of water-saving technologies to minimize the threat to their vines. At Somerston Estate in St. Helena, this innovation comes in the form of aerial mapping and neutron probes, both of which General Manager Craig Becker utilizes to cut down on the property’s water use. And clocking in at a whopping 1,600-plus acres, the estate’s crew can use all the techy help it can get. Drones fly above the vineyard to specific designated spots, taking note of the foliage color and vigor, whereas probes in the soil register just how much water is available to the vines. Then, through the beauty of technology, Becker and his staff are able to keep track of the fluctuations and accommodate irrigation and treatments accordingly. … ” Read more from the Napa Register here: Vineyard technology working to combat the Napa Valley water crisis
Groundwater plans near adoption
“It’s been a long haul, and a lot of work has been put in by a large citizens advisory panel, but the groundwater sustainability plan for the Sonoma Valley groundwater subbasin will be up for adoption by the Sonoma Valley Groundwater Sustainability Agency (SVGSA, one of three Sonoma County Groundwater Sustainability Agencies or SCGSAs) on Dec. 6, and put forward in January 2022 for possible state adoption by the California Department of Water Resources. The plan lays out a program for reducing groundwater losses and restoring the resources to former levels over the next 20 years. … ” Read more from the Kenwood Press here: Groundwater plans near adoption
Commentary: If a creek could talk
Aaron Nunez, Environmental Specialist, City of Santa Rosa, writes, “We’ve all heard the saying “If these walls could talk”. A tried-and-true expression meant to exercise our imagination on how inanimate objects such as a wall have been timeless placeholders for countless human events of interest to the likes of which we, only given this one life on earth, could only dream of experiencing. An restatement of that very saying which has crossed my mind many times is “If this creek could talk”. Would it be talking about the good ole days where it could stretch its banks across an open valley as the morning sun would rise to greet its waters? Would it brag about its beautiful, braided channels and islands it once boasted in the open air? Or would it weep and commiserate on what it once was and what it now has become? Would it sound sickly, frail, and disillusioned with how the world around it has grown to be? Would it sound lonely, longing for the company and festivity of all its riparian flora and fauna it once hosted? Or would it just be downright angry? … ” Continue reading at the Sonoma Gazette here: Commentary: If a creek could talk
Marin irrigation ban and water penalties arrive
“Most Marin County residents and businesses will be prohibited from turning on their outdoor sprinklers and drip irrigation systems beginning this week — or face fines as high as $250 in addition to other drought penalties. The ban enacted by the Marin Municipal Water District, which takes effect Wednesday, will continue through May. Hand spot-watering using a hose and spray nozzle or a watering can is still allowed. The restrictions do not apply to recycled water. “The days are cooler and shorter,” said Carrie Pollard, a district manager. “It is cooling down. We have seen a little bit of rain. We’d like to see a little more but irrigation demands are usually low this time of year, so it makes sense for people to turn their irrigation off to the extent possible.” ... ” Read more from the Marin Independent Journal here: Marin irrigation ban and water penalties arrive
New Marin water restrictions catch some residents off guard
“It may feel like the Bay Area has had some good rain, so far in 2021, but starting December 1 parts of Marin County will implement tough new water restrictions. It has caught some residents off guard. Some, like Nancy Bush. were even unaware they were still in a drought. “I’m pretty surprised because I thought we were coming out of the drought,” said Bush. From December 1 to May 31 of 2022, customers of Marin Municipal Water District will no longer be able to do outdoor irrigation and if their water use for a 4-person household exceeds 748 gallons per month, they’ll have to pay more. ... ” Read more from CBS San Francisco here: New Marin water restrictions catch some residents off guard
Temperatures break record in San Francisco Bay Area. How hot will it get this week?
“The San Francisco Bay Area was soaked in sunshine over the weekend, and the dry and unseasonably warm conditions are expected to persist through most of the workweek, with afternoon temperatures 10 to 15 degrees above normal, the National Weather Service said. The sunny weather is the result of a ridge of high pressure stretched across California and the desert Southwest. The ridge is preventing any storms from the Pacific Ocean pushing into California. “It acts like a blocking mechanism and is streaming all that moisture into the Pacific Northwest,” said Sarah McCorkle, a meteorologist with the weather service. … ” Read more from SF Gate here: Temperatures break record in San Francisco Bay Area. How hot will it get this week?
Camarillo’s next wave of water unveiled with long-awaited desalter facility
“Camarillo’s long-awaited desalter plant will soon begin treating previously unusable groundwater to convert into drinkable water for residents and businesses. The city unveiled the $66.3 million North Pleasant Valley Groundwater Desalter, located at 2727 Somis Road, at a ribbon cutting before a crowd of about 100 people on Tuesday. The desalter will begin trickling water into the city’s water supply in April, slowly increasing its output until its providing 3.4 million gallons of potable water per day, according to Lucie McGovern, Camarillo deputy public works director and project manager. … ” Read more from the Ventura County Star here: Camarillo’s next wave of water unveiled with long-awaited desalter facility
SAN JOAQUIN VALLEY
Tulare County opposes Sierra Nevada designated as critical habitat
“The Tulare County Board of Supervisors is opposing a federal plan to set aside half a million acres in the Sierra Nevada mountains as critical habitat for an endangered species indigenous to North American forests. In its Nov. 9 letter, the Tulare County Board of Supervisors opposed a recommendation by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) to designate 554,454 acres of land in the Southern Sierra Nevada mountains as critical habitats for a small mammal known as a fisher. According to FWS, fishers are members of the weasel family, related to mink, otter and marten. … ” Read more from the Foothills Sun-Gazette here: Tulare County opposes Sierra Nevada designated as critical habitat
Downtown L.A. sees no rain in November for 1st time in nearly 30 years
“With just hours left to go in this month — and no precipitation in the forecast for Tuesday — downtown Los Angeles is set to experience its first rainless November in almost 30 years, according to the National Weather Service. The 11th month of the year is typically not a wet one for the area, with downtown’s average just a hair above three-quarters of an inch on average, NWS said. However, it’s still unusual for there to be no precipitation at all. In fact, that hasn’t happened since 1992, weather service data showed. … ” Read more from KTLA Channel 5 here: Downtown L.A. sees no rain in November for 1st time in nearly 30 years
2 Southern California ski areas to open despite dry fall
“Two Southern California ski areas will open this week despite dry fall weather. Big Bear Mountain Resorts announced that Friday will be opening day for the general public at Bear Mountain and Snow Summit. Season pass holders will get an early start on Thursday. Weather across Southern California has been dry and mild but it has been cold enough up in the San Bernardino Mountains for snowmaking. In the Sierra Nevada, ski resorts have largely seen postponements of opening days due to lack of snowfall and warm conditions that have thwarted snowmaking. ... ” Read more from the AP here: 2 Southern California ski areas to open despite dry fall
Arizona, California, Nevada agree to new Colorado River agreement to conserve more water
“Arizona’s water authorities are close to entering into a new pact with officials from Nevada and California they hope will restore water levels at Lake Mead and stave off future rationing requirements. A Tier 1 Colorado River water shortage beginsin 2022, triggering a mandatory 512,000 acre-foot reduction to Arizona. The emergency stems from the Lake Mead reservoir reaching water levels not seen since its construction. The designation doesn’t affect Arizona residents, rather the state’s agriculture industry that represents the majority of water usage. In hopes of keeping water levels in check, officials from the Lower Basin states and the federal Bureau of Reclamation are close to finalizing the 500+ Plan. ... ” Read more from Center Square here: Arizona, California, Nevada agree to new Colorado River agreement to conserve more water
Arizona water woes: Rio Verde Foothills residents worried as Scottsdale gets ready to cut off their water access
“Homeowners in the Rio Verde Foothills, located north of Scottsdale, are losing their water access. Soon, residents there will no longer be able to tap into Scottsdale’s water, as a result of the city’s new drought management plan. Many residents have no plan on how they can get water, and some say they will be forced to move if they cannot get access to water. “We were both shocked and angry, to say the least,” said one resident, who did not want to be on camera. … ” Read more from Channel 10 here: Water woes: Rio Verde Foothills residents worried as Scottsdale gets ready to cut off their water access
Colorado issues cease-and-desist order for Nederland-area mine that’s leaking heavy metals into water
“State water quality officials have issued a cease and desist order and threatened substantial fines against owners of the Caribou gold mine above Nederland because of heavy metals leaking into drinking water sources, hammering Grand Island Resources over repeated violations. The dripping heavy metals are not a current threat to Middle Boulder Creek, Barker Reservoir or the parts of Boulder County downstream, state officials said. But they ordered the owners to build a new containment and cleanup system, and threatened to impose fines of up to $54,833 per day for each of multiple violations for the toxic metals and for failing to report test results. … ” Read more from the Colorado Sun here: Colorado issues cease-and-desist order for Nederland-area mine that’s leaking heavy metals into water
U.S. Supreme Court broadens equitable apportionment doctrine to include groundwater
“The United States Supreme Court unanimously decided its first interstate groundwater case, finding that Mississippi must rely on the doctrine of equitable apportionment to invoke the Court’s original jurisdiction for relief related to allegations of excessive pumping of groundwater by Tennessee. See Mississippi v. Tennessee, 595 U.S. ___ (2021). Equitable apportionment is a judicial remedy intended “to produce a fair allocation of a shared water resource between two or more states,” and “[t]raditionally, . . . has been the exclusive judicial remedy for interstate water disputes, unless a statute, compact, or prior apportionment controls.” The Court has previously applied the doctrine of equitable apportionment to interstate rivers and streams, interstate river basins, and even where the pumping of groundwater has affected the flow of interstate surface waters—but never before addressed whether equitable apportionment applies to interstate aquifers. … ” Read more from Somach Simmons & Dunn here: U.S. Supreme Court broadens equitable apportionment doctrine to include groundwater
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.