DAILY DIGEST, 9/8: San Joaquin Valley Blueprint engages in the Delta reconsultation process; New California law bolsters groundwater recharge; Thousands of domestic and public supply wells at risk despite SGMA; and more …

In California water news today …

Ensuring a sustainable future: San Joaquin Valley Blueprint engages in the Delta reconsultation process

A section of the California Aqueduct, just south of the Harvey O. Banks Delta Pumping Plant near Alameda County’s Bethany Reservoir.  By Norm Hughes/ DWR

“The Water Blueprint for the San Joaquin Valley is pleased to announce what it hopes you will find exciting news! The Blueprint will assist with efforts to protect more than 400,000 acre-feet, on average, of water supplied by the federal Central Valley Project (“CVP”) and the State Water Project (“SWP”). In addition, the Blueprint will seek to further enhance water supply by proposing potential changes to restrictions imposed on operations of the CVP and SWP by Water Rights Decision 1641 (“D-1641”) based on what we have learned about how climate change and its impact hydrologic patterns in California over the last three decades. The Blueprint will also suggest modifications to how measures imposed under the California Endangered Species Act on operations of the SWP to protect species are implemented with an eye to promoting SWP operational flexibility. … ”  Continue reading from the San Joaquin Valley Blueprint.

New California law bolsters groundwater recharge as strategic defense against climate change

“A new but little-known change in California law designating aquifers as “natural infrastructure” promises to unleash a flood of public funding for projects that increase the state’s supply of groundwater.  The change is buried in a sweeping state budget-related law, enacted in July, that also makes it easier for property owners and water managers to divert floodwater for storage underground.  The obscure, seemingly inconsequential classification of aquifers could have a far-reaching effect in California where restoring depleted aquifers has become a strategic defense against climate change — an insurance against more frequent droughts and more variable precipitation. The state leans heavily on aquifers, drawing about 40 percent of its water supply from the ground during an average water year and up to 60 percent during dry years. … ”  Read more from Western Water.

Thousands of domestic and public supply wells face failure despite groundwater sustainability reform in California’s Central Valley

“Across the world, declining groundwater levels cause wells to run dry, increase water and food insecurity, and often acutely impact groundwater-dependent communities. Despite the ubiquity and severity of these impacts, groundwater research has primarily focused on economic policy instruments for sustainable management or the quantification of groundwater depletion, rather than assessing the impacts of management decisions. In particular, how definitions of groundwater sustainability shape the fate of resource users remains unexplored. Here, we examine one of the world’s largest-scale environmental sustainability reforms, the California Sustainable Groundwater Management Act (SGMA), and estimate the impact of sustainability definitions proposed in groundwater sustainability plans (GSPs) on well failure. We show that locally-proposed sustainability criteria are consistent with business as usual groundwater level decline, and if reached, could impact over 9000 domestic wells and around 1000 public supply wells. These findings highlight the necessity of careful and critical evaluation of locally-developed sustainability definitions and their implementation to prevent detrimental impacts, such as threats to household and municipal water supply.”  Read the full article from Nature.

Large municipal water suppliers may soon have prescribed methodology for calculating water use efficiency objectives under newly proposed regulations

“The “Making Conservation a California Way of Life” regulation (Proposed Conservation Regulation) seeks to establish the methods and criteria that large municipal water suppliers must use to calculate their “urban water use objectives.” An urban water use objective is akin to a water use goal. It is based on the estimated aggregated quantity of water that a supplier would have delivered in a previous year, if all of that delivered water was used efficiently, as well as the water use efficiency standards and the local characteristics of the water supplier’s service area. State Water Resources Control Board (State Board) staff is hosting a workshop on the Proposed Conservation Regulation on October 4, 2023, from 9:30 a.m. to noon, at which interested persons can provide oral comments. Written comments on the Proposed Conservation Regulation may be submitted from now until October 17, 2023. … ”  Continue reading from Somach Simmons & Dunn.

California’s reservoirs above historic averages as fall approaches

“As the final days of summer near, California’s reservoirs are in a position they have not been in for some time, they still have a significant amount of water in them.  As of Thursday, all but Trinity Reservoir near Redding and Casitas near Ventura, are at or above their historic average levels, according to the California Department of Water data exchange.  Most reservoirs are also still well above 70 percent of their total capacity, with Lake Cachuma having the highest total capacity percentage of 95 percent. … ”  Read more from KTXL.

A YIMBY dream or urban sprawl 2.0? Housing activists divided over proposed Solano County city

Conceptual drawing from the California Forever website (CaliforniaForever.com)

“The plan by a group of Silicon Valley billionaires to build a utopian city on 50,000 acres of rolling farmlands in remote Solano County has divided and somewhat confounded the Bay Area’s YIMBY community, a movement of housing-obsessed activists who, over the past decade, have transformed the politics around residential development in cities across the country.  While YIMBYs are typically focused on making it easier and faster to add housing in dense cities and their nearby suburbs — places with plenty of jobs, and good public transportation — the city proposed by California Forever would be built on isolated land currently occupied by cows and sheep, wheat and barley.  To some of the yes in my backyard contingent, the plan smacks of the kind of sprawl that has choked California’s freeways and caused cars to spew carbon dioxide into the state’s atmosphere. Others, meanwhile, welcome it as a potential model for what a modern sustainable city might look like.  And a third group — perhaps the biggest constituency — have so many questions they don’t know what to think. … ”  Read more from the San Francisco Chronicle.

Drought still grips this California region as 99% of the state recovers. Map shows latest

“The entire desert region is drought-free for the first time in three years, after record breaking rainfall from a historic tropical cyclone washed the region. Former Hurricane Hilary brought Southern California’s first tropical storm in more than 80 years; and with it copious amounts of rainfall, flooded roads and mudslides. According to the U.S. Drought Monitor, moderate drought conditions fell from nearly 7.3% on Aug. 8 to roughly 0.2% on Tuesday. The storm hit California in late August. Whether the drought is over depends on where you are and the status of your water agency’s supply. … ”  Read more from the Sacramento Bee.

Elwha River: New study examines effects of dam removals on coastal ecosystems

Lake Mills, Elwha River Dam Removal. Photo by Michael M.

“Dam removal has gained traction as a powerful tool for restoring aquatic habitats and eliminating high-risk infrastructure. While most previous studies have concentrated on river and watershed responses to dam removal, the dam removals on the Elwha River, a short river within Olympic National Park that drains to the coast, offered an unprecedented chance to investigate the impact of dam removal on coastal ecosystems.  A key finding of the study is the profound effect of sediment deposition on nearshore communities. Where sediment deposits persisted, mostly near (within two kilometers of) the river mouth, sites exhibited wholesale changes in their biological community composition, resulting in a shift that so far has not reverted to its pre-dam removal state. … ”  Continue reading from the USGS.

Funding:  How Do I Get My Hands on These “Wild Billions,” Anyway?

“Historic amounts of federal money are flowing into the Bay Area and California thanks to the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law (BIL) and Inflation Reduction Act (IRA). How does your organization or agency apply for some of it? After talking with experts and grant awardees to wrap our minds around this process, we’ve come up with a quick guide and database for seeking grants related to nature-based solutions in northern California available through BIL and IRA. … ”  Read more from Bay Nature.

SEE ALSO:  Biden-Harris Administration Launches New Large-Scale Water Recycling Program with $180 Million from Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, press release from the Department of the Interior

How to address sea level risks in California real estate transactions

“It’s an increasingly common sight on California’s coast: beach houses being swallowed by the rising sea. The threat of flooding and erosion is increasing throughout the United States as a warming atmosphere makes precipitation events more extreme and contributes to sea level rise. In fact, the U.S. coastline is projected to see an average of 10 to 12 inches of sea level rise between 2020 and 2050, which is equal to the amount measured over the last 100 years.   Despite the serious and costly risk of coastal flooding, waterfront properties remain alluring to home buyers in California. Most states, including California, fail to adequately apprise potential homebuyers of the physical, legal, and economic risks they need to consider in making a safe and prudent decision on a major financial investment. For example, only 10 states require the disclosure of flooding history at the time of a home purchase. … ”  Read more from Legal Planet.

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In commentary today …

DWR: Why modernizing infrastructure will benefit our future water supply.

“The State Water Project (SWP) moves life-sustaining water across the state for 27 million Californians and 750,000 acres of farmland. It supplies families, businesses, crops, and industries with safe and affordable water.  Without modernization of our infrastructure, climate-driven weather extremes and seismic threats will affect how we can deliver this water, risking human health and safety, urban and agricultural economies, and the cost of water to communities.  The modernization work required includes physical infrastructure improvements to how we capture and move water during high flow weather events to store for later use during dry periods. Improving the way we move the water with a proposed tunnel system, called the Delta Conveyance Project, will help protect against interruptions in water deliveries due to earthquakes and the effects of climate-driven weather extremes like rising sea levels and other unanticipated extreme weather. … ”  Read more from DWR.

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In regional water news and commentary today …


Commentary: PG&E should stay the course on Eel River dam removal

Alicia Hamann, the executive director of Friends of the Eel River, writes, “For over 120 years, Russian River water users have enjoyed a boost to their water supplies at the expense of the Eel River. PG&E’s Potter Valley Project uses two dams and a pipeline to divert water from the Eel River to a powerhouse on the East Fork of the Russian River. While the project was developed primarily for hydropower, it offered free water to downstream water users who expanded vineyards accordingly.  Over time, the economic, ecological, and cultural impacts to Eel River communities accumulated. The dams block salmon and steelhead from reaching headwaters spawning grounds and disrupt sediment transport down the river. This contributes greatly to the collapse of Eel River fish runs, harming coastal economies and robbing local Native Americans of an essential part of their culture. … ”  Read more from the Eureka Times-Standard.

MCCSD provides updates on sewer system maintenance

“The MCCSD held its monthly meeting on Monday, August 28, which was a relatively brief 45 minutes. Over half the meeting was used for public expression by a number of residents and business owners.  About half the members of the public asked that the MCCSD provide recordings of its meetings. Meetings are currently not recorded in any manner other than notes by the district secretary. The Board was non-responsive regarding the recording issue, as is the rule for public expression of items not on the agenda.  The other half of the public were restaurant owners looking for some clarity and direction about how the district would be dealing with the tents in town regarding lot coverage and water allocation. … ”  Read more from the Mendocino Beacon.

Why water rates in Yreka could be going up

“Residents and businesses in Yreka could face increased water rates as the city considers a staggered rise in rates to keep track with the increasing cost of water delivery and treating sewerage.  “In order to provide adequate services over the next few years to the people of Yreka…we do have to make some changes, because things are going up,” said Councilman Paul McCoy at the Sept. 5 council meeting where the members were presented with an analysis of rates and other data to consider. The council will likely make a decision about the rate increase in the coming weeks. … ”  Read more from the Siskiyou Daily News.


Invasive plant barrier installed at Taylor, Tallac marsh areas; Public reminded to stay out of fenced areas

“Agencies restoring the Taylor and Tallac marsh areas have completed the installation of bottom barriers to remove 17 acres of invasive plants as part of the comprehensive restoration of one of the last natural wetlands in the Lake Tahoe Basin, the USDA Forest Service Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit and Tahoe Regional Planning Agency announced today.  The collaborative project that began in December 2021 is one of the largest aquatic invasive species control projects ever undertaken in the Tahoe Basin. … ”  Read more from the Tahoe Daily Tribune.


Biodiversity in the Sacramento Valley

“[Yesterday was] California Biodiversity Day, which marks the anniversary of the launch of California Biodiversity Initiative in 2018 and celebrates our amazing state, the exceptional biodiversity we have in the Sacramento Valley and throughout California, and the actions we can work on with our many partners to ensure biodiversity.  In the Sacramento Valley, our goal is to promote functioning ecosystems and sustainable water supplies by preserving, sustaining, and promoting our communities and working agricultural landscapes that support ecosystem function and provide landscape-scale habitat benefits for fish, bird, and wildlife populations. Biodiversity–which on a regional landscape is the variety of life in a particular place with diversity of species, habitats, and vegetation–is dependent upon our precious water resources and our collective goal is to bring our natural and working landscapes in this region to life through the careful interaction of water, sun, and land that creates biodiversity (i.e., see MOU). … ”  Read more from the Northern California Water Association.


Clover Flat lawsuit ends, but disagreements continue over Calistoga-area landfill

“Two sides involved in a lawsuit over Clover Flat Landfill near Calistoga have different thoughts on the dismissal of the case in Napa County Superior Court. The group WhataWasteNV.org in October 2021 sued the Upper Valley Waste Management Agency, which oversees the privately owned landfill. It alleged a franchise agreement update between the agency and landfill operator allows the landfill to accept more waste and required environmental study. Immediately after the lawsuit filing, agency manger Steven Lederer said the lawsuit contained “factually inaccurate and time-limited claims.”  All of this culminated in a recent settlement agreement. Lederer said the Upper Valley agreed not to seek attorney fees and other costs from the plaintiffs in return for the case being dismissed. … ”  Read more from the Napa Valley Register.


Santa Venetia flood berm repair underway as replacement plans ramp up

“Marin County has begun a nearly $300,000 repair job on sections of a rapidly deteriorating floodwall shielding more than 500 homes in San Rafael.  While a crew is on the ground replacing wooden boards and adding compacted dirt to the timber-reinforced berm, another team is behind the scenes advancing an environmental review and looking to close a $16.8 million funding gap to replace the barrier.  “The maintenance repair work that’s happening now helps maintain the current level of protection, but more is needed to extend the overall service life of the berm,” said Marin County Supervisor Mary Sackett, whose District 1 includes the Santa Venetia community, where the berm is situated. … ”  Read more from the Marin Independent Journal.


Salmon savers: Volunteers in Santa Cruz County seek to turn tide of declining coho populations

“A tiny number of the fish that used to fill West Coast rivers are still running in the creeks. In Santa Cruz County, an effort to turn the tide of declining salmon populations appears to be paying off.  Far from the beaten path of tires pounding 280 pavement, Connor Greenwood’s commute threads a narrow dirt path off Swanton Road abeam Highway 1 some thirty minutes north of Santa Cruz.  It’s something he’s done come rain, shine, or the August 2020 wildfires that scorched the redwoods that flank Big Creek Road.  “This place was an inferno”, Greenwood recalls. Barely escaping the flames: 28,000 inch-long coho salmon, inside large pools topped by canvas domes that come into view as we round the bumpy bend into Kingfisher Flats Hatchery. … ”  Read more from CBS Bay Area.


Ancestral lands back in the hands of Kern River Valley tribe that had lived there for thousands of years

“A Kern River Valley Native American tribe that has lived along the branches of the north and south forks of the Kern River for millennia, has ownership of a piece of its ancient homeland for the first time since it was grabbed up by settlers back in the 1800s.  The Tübatulabal Tribe got the deed to about 1,240 acres of mostly untouched land northeast of Isabella Lake on Aug. 31. The land was part of the old 2,274-acre Quarter-Circle-5 Ranch north of Weldon at the end of Fay Ranch Road. The other piece of the ranch, about 1,040 acres, was deeded to the Kern River Valley Heritage Foundation, which also owns the nearby Hanning Flat Preserve. … ”  Read more from SJV Water.


Migrating shorebirds ally with clean air activists in the Owens Valley

““The Owens Valley is nothing but a resource colony,” Kathy Jefferson Bancroft, tribal historic preservation officer for the Lone Pine Paiute-Shoshone Reservation, told me. Her office in Lone Pine contains many more boxes of paperwork related to tribal battles with the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (“DWP” as it is known in the valley), CalTrans, mining interests, and other private and public entities that covet something from the Owens Valley, than it contains preserved tribal archeological artifacts. Bancroft’s office is a site of an historic struggle for historic preservation and not the only site or the only struggle against DWP in this valley.  The largest, most unifying fight in the valley community has been to force DWP to reduce the amount of alkali dust from the dry Owens Lake, which, 20 years ago produced the worst air pollution in America. … ”  Read more from Counter Punch.

Comment period extended for IWVGA Imported Water Pipeline Project

“On Sept. 6, the Indian Valley Wells Groundwater Authority (IWVGA), as lead agency pursuant to the California Environmental Quality Act, announced an extension for agency and public comments for preparation of a draft Environmental Impact Report for the Imported Water Pipeline Project. Initially scheduled through Aug. 31, the comment period has been extended until Sept. 20. … ”  Read more from the Ridgecrest Independent.


Santa Clarita: Schiavo and Wilk’s CEMEX bill passes Senate

“A bill seen as a key tool to aid in the fight against the proposed CEMEX sand and gravel mine in Soledad Canyon has passed the state Senate and is headed toward Gov. Gavin Newsom’s desk for approval.  Assembly Bill 1631 states that if the State Water Resources Control Board has not rendered a final determination on an application for a permit to appropriate water for uses, including mining, within 30 years from the date the application was filed, the board would be required to issue a new notice and provide an opportunity for protests before rendering a final determination, with specified exceptions.  It passed the California State Senate with bipartisan support on Thursday. … ”  Read more from The Signal.

The Los Cerritos Wetlands are getting a clean up, thanks to this volunteer team

“In late August 2023, the EPA removed federal protections for most of the wetlands in the country to comply with a recent Supreme Court ruling that reduced the power of the Clean Water Act.  The Los Cerritos Wetlands is in the middle of a sweeping renovation project, done in partnership with the Los Cerritos Wetlands Authority, Tidal Influence and the Aquarium of the Pacific. Volunteers meet for a few hours on the first Saturday of every month to pull weeds, break up cement, add mulch and plant plants.  Cassandra Davis, the volunteer services manager at Aquarium of the Pacific, said wetlands play a crucial role in protecting local flora and fauna, filtering water and most importantly, wetlands help clean the air.  “They capture a lot of carbon dioxide in particular,” Davis said. “So the carbon dioxide that we are adding to the atmosphere, wetlands are on the of the ways we can recapture that.” … ”  Read more from Spectrum 1.

In a charred moonscape, a band of hopeful workers try to save the Joshua tree

“Early western explorers who ventured into the Mojave Desert, like Jedediah Smith, often mischaracterized it as a barren landscape, devoid of life.  Yet a closer inspection of these sweeping landscapes reveals soil-hugging carpets of springtime flowers, native grasses and fragrant shrubs, alongside the more obvious cacti and succulents.  Where the desert lives up to its stereotype is after a wildfire.  In the shadow of last month’s York Fire in California’s Mojave National Preserve, almost nothing is left amid the rocks and sand, except the charred carcasses of Mojave yuccas, Joshua trees, and chollas. The soil is a mottled brown and black, and some plants have been reduced to mere silhouettes of char on the ground. … ”  Continue reading at KQED.


Federal court hears oral arguments on Imperial Valley farmers’ claims to Colorado River water

Brian McNeece writes, “In what seems to be perennially Michael Abatti v. IID season in the courtroom, Judge Michael Anello of the Federal Southern District Court heard oral arguments from each side’s attorneys on Wednesday, June 6, in San Diego.  Mr. Abatti and 23 of his relatives and friends filed a lawsuit last June alleging that the IID’s new Equitable Distribution Plan violated their rights to water, deprived them of due process, and caused them economic harm.  In response, the IID asked the judge to dismiss the case on the grounds that Mr. Abatti’s allegations had already been decided in 2020 when the California Fourth Court of Appeals had ruled that Mr. Abatti and other Imperial Valley farmers don’t own the water, but instead own a right to continued water service.   On September 1, Judge Anello had simplified the question by issuing a tentative ruling. … ”  Read more from the Desert Review.


A California beach town is desperate to save its vanishing sand

“In Oceanside, a coastal suburb about 40 miles north of San Diego, the palm trees sway and the temperature is almost always perfect. Fishermen cast their lines from the long, wooden pier. Teenagers with salt-bleached hair watch surfers ride glassy waves. “Every day here feels like the most perfect summer day,” Mercedes Murray, 38, said as she lounged at Buccaneer Beach, a spot popular among locals. There is just one problem: The sand is disappearing. Where residents once played beach volleyball at Buccaneer, there are now berms of natural cobblestones that clatter around in the surf like pennies in a washing machine. Visitors who could once sprawl on wide stretches of sand near the pier must now compete for space on a narrow stretch studded with rocks.  A beach town cannot exist without a beach … ”  Read more from the New York Times (gift article).

CDFW, County of San Diego bring Sacramento perch to Southern California to create future urban fishing opportunity

Lindo Lake, photo by Susan Williams

“The California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) in partnership with the County of San Diego Department of Parks and Recreation has introduced Sacramento perch to Lindo Lake in Lakeside in an effort to establish the first population of Sacramento perch in Southern California and create a unique urban fishing opportunity in the future.  Thirty-seven juvenile Sacramento perch collected from Bridgeport Reservoir in Mono County were driven to Lindo Lake County Park and released Aug. 10 into the recently restored and renovated Lindo Lake east basin. It’s the second stocking of Sacramento perch into Lindo Lake as thousands of larval Sacramento perch were released there last year. CDFW will conduct additional translocations of fish from Bridgeport over the next two years to supplement the fishery at Lindo Lake. … ”  Read more from the Department of Fish & Wildlife.

Voters in North County, 4th supervisorial district sent information about upcoming special election

“San Diego County elections officials have mailed out more than 430,000 notices to registered voters eligible to participate in the November special election, alerting people to the issues and how they may cast their ballots. … Residents of the Fallbrook Public Utilities District and Rainbow Municipal Water District will decide whether to secede from the San Diego County Water Authority, a plan that was approved by the Local Agency Formation Commission in June but is still being challenged in court. … ”  Read more from the San Diego Union-Tribune.

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Along the Colorado River …

The Colorado River is significantly declining due to climate change

“The Colorado River is an artery that pumps millions of gallons of water to tens of millions of people in the Southwestern United States. And as much as the river divides and segments the land it runs through, it also connects.  “Water in western Colorado is not a partisan issue,” said Andy Mueller, the executive director for the Colorado River District. “We have some of the most liberal counties in America, but we also have some of the most conservative counties in America, and yet when they come together — their representatives who employ me — 90% of the time they agree on water policy issues. And it is the one area in today’s really divided political discourse where we see some united discussion.” … ”  Read more from Channel 23.

Trump’s border wall caused ‘significant damage and destruction’ to environmental and cultural resources, watchdog says

“Barriers constructed along the U.S.-Mexico border during the Trump administration caused “significant damage and destruction” to the environment and cultural sites, the Government Accountability Office said in a report Thursday.  The watchdog’s 72-page document says former President Donald Trump’s efforts to deliver on a campaign promise — to construct more than 450 miles of border barrier panels along the southwest border to deter illegal crossings and activity — hampered the migration of endangered species, eroded federal lands, disrupted water flow and “irreparably” damaged sacred tribal sites.  As they prepared to construct the wall in Arizona, California, New Mexico and Texas, Trump administration officials waived laws to protect cultural and natural resources and installed more than half of the wall’s mileage on federal lands. … ”  Read more from NBC News.

Scottsdale city council approves water exchange partnership with Tucson

“The Scottsdale City Council approved a new agreement Aug. 21 that will create a new water exchange partnership between Scottsdale and the city of Tucson.  Per the agreement, Scottsdale could exchange up to 5,000 acre-feet of Scottsdale’s Central Arizona Project (CAP) water on an annual basis in exchange for credits that will be redeemed during shortages. … ”  Read more from Signals AZ.

ADWR director joins Tribal leaders in celebrating historic water rights settlement

“ADWR Director Tom Buschatzke joined tribal and federal officials on August 30 to help celebrate the Hualapai Tribe’s historic $312 million water rights settlement at the Tribe’s spectacular Grand Canyon West development near Peach Springs.  The Director congratulated Tribal leaders on getting the agreement to the finish line.  “A permanent solution to declining water supplies on the reservation is the ultimate outcome of this water settlement and the Tribe deserves nothing less,” said Buschatzke. … ”  Read more from the Arizona Department of Water Resources.

Conservationists sue over plan to increase Colorado water storage capacity

“Arizona relies heavily on the Colorado River, which analysts say is overallocated.  Yet Upper Basin states such as Colorado continue to look for ways to store water, and conservationists have filed suit to stop one such project. … ”  Read more from KJZZ.

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In national water news today …

With automated treatment, affordable water from nontraditional sources can flow to underserved communities

“Researchers at the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory are developing advanced automation techniques for desalination and water treatment plants, enabling them to save while providing affordable drinking water to small, parched communities without high-quality water supplies.  Climate change and growing populations are straining the lakes, rivers and aquifers that traditionally provide clean water. Today, more towns need to be able to treat brackish, salty or biologically-polluted water to drinking water standards. But operating this more complex treatment often requires expensive technical expertise.  Through DOE’s National Alliance for Water Innovation research program, ORNL, universities and private companies are working together to develop and demonstrate fully-automated, multi-stage treatment systems that are effective at making nontraditional water sources clean and healthy for drinking or irrigation. … ”  Read more from EurekAlert.

NASA scientists test new tool for tracking algal blooms

“By the time they were over, a series of massive algal blooms along the west coast of Florida in 2020 would be linked to some 2,000 tons of dead marine life around Tampa Bay.  Earth-orbiting satellites have been used for decades to detect algal blooms from space, enabling more frequent observations over broader areas than is possible by directly sampling the water. The most common observing technique relies on the visible spectrum to measure ocean color. However, this approach has been mostly restricted to clear sky conditions.  A recent study, led by scientists at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Southern California, has shown how one space-based instrument called TROPOMI, or TROPOspheric Monitoring Instrument, was able to peer through thin clouds to uncover powerful clues about Karenia brevis (or K. brevis), the microscopic algae responsible for the 2020 blooms. … ”  Read more from JPL.

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National water and climate report …

The Natural Resources Conservation Service produces this weekly report using data and products from the National Water and Climate Center and other agencies. The report focuses on seasonal snowpack, precipitation, temperature, and drought conditions in the U.S.


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Also on Maven’s Notebook today …

NOW AVAILABLE: Western Water and Working Lands Framework for Conservation Action

NOW AVAILABLE: Updated Delta Plan Performance Measures Guidebook and Dashboard Data

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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.


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