CALIFORNIA WATER POLICY CONFERENCE: Reasonable Use or Waste: A Developing Dichotomy

Panel discussion explores the evolution of the doctrine of reasonable use and considers how the doctrine will, or will not, be applied in the future Could ornamental lawns in California be one day considered an unreasonable use?  How about evapotranspiration rates of some crops? Instream flows?  And if a use is found to be unreasonable, is the conserved water up […]

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PANEL DISCUSSION: Water and weed: Now that’s it’s legal ….

Panel discusses how regulation of cannabis cultivation in California is working so far and the challenges facing communities on the front lines of the ‘green rush’ In the fall of 2016, voters approved Proposition 64, which legalized the adult use of marijuana, with legal cannabis sales starting in January of 2018.  Although medical cannabis has been grown in California for […]

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CA WATER POLICY CONFERENCE: Department of Water Resources Director Karla Nemeth shares her vision for moving the Department forward

Speech emphasizes the importance of partnerships and the transformational changes underway at the Department In January of this year, Karla Nemeth was appointed Director of the California Department of Water Resources by Governor Brown.  As Director, Karla Nemeth oversees the Department in its mission to manage and protect California’s water resources, working with other agencies in order to benefit the […]

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A conversation with journalist Lois Henry

Lois Henry talks about fracking, Nickel water, and more in a facilitated conversation with Tom Philp On Sunday, Lois Henry published her final column (here it is) after 27 years at the Bakersfield Californian.  She will be beginning a new adventure working with Central Valley BizFed, a new organization she describes as a ‘federation of diverse business organizations, trade groups, […]

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CA WATER POLICY CONFERENCE: Salty buildup: The threat to California’s water

Panel discusses the pervasive problem of salinity and irrigated agriculture, and what can be done about it Salinity is a slow-moving but critical problem.  It is most challenging in regions that have constrained drainage; it can be exacerbated when imported water brings salts into the basin; imported food and other raw materials can add to the problem.  If salts are […]

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CA WATER POLICY CONFERENCE: Water Rights in an Era of “Permanent” Conservation Mandates: Are Reports of Their Death Greatly Exaggerated?

By complying with a state-directed water budget formula, will agencies be forced to strand their water rights or infrastructure investments? On May 9th of 2016, Governor Brown issued the latest in a series of executive orders in response to the drought, which was entitled, “Making water conservation a California way of life.” In that order he directed a group of […]

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PANEL DISCUSSION: ESA & Climate Change: Collision Course?

  With a new administration in Washington, DC that has taken a different view of environmental regulation, changes in the Endangered Species Act perhaps seem more possible than in prior years.  The effects of climate change threaten to further complicate efforts to conserve and protect endangered species.  Is the Endangered Species Act broken?  Will the new administration make significant changes […]

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Panel discussion: Strange bed flows: Managing groundwater and stream flow

Panel tackles the question of what is a ‘groundwater-dependent ecosystem’ and how that fits into the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act The Sustainable Groundwater Management Act, or SGMA, was passed in 2014 by the state legislature, and for the first time, it requires agencies around the state to sustainably manage their groundwater basins.  SGMA requires that in operating the groundwater basin […]

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California’s water future: Converging threats, strategic responses

David Wegner says the assumptions of the second wave of water development are no longer valid; we must work together to usher in the ‘third wave’ of water Solutions to California’s water problems is going to take action on many levels: at the community level, at the county and regional level, at the state level, and of course, at the […]

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Panel discussion: “Fixing” California’s water rights system

Panel of prominent attorneys discusses how the state’s water rights system performed in the drought and what changes, if any, should be made to the current system California’s recent drought and the State Water Board’s curtailments of water rights starting in 2014 has brought complaints about the state’s antiquated water rights system and alleged oversubscription of our surface water resources […]

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