Revised Delta Levees Investment Strategy approved over objections by Delta stakeholders

At the August 2021 meeting, the Delta Stewardship Council voted to approve a revised Delta Levees Investment Strategy and to move to formal rulemaking, with Councilmember Don Nottoli, Chair of the Delta Protection Commission, voting against the proposal. The Delta Levees Investment Strategy prioritizes state funding for Delta levees.  Levees marked "very high" priority (red), … Continue reading Revised Delta Levees Investment Strategy approved over objections by Delta stakeholders

Governor Newsom signs SB 821, restoring compensation to Delta Independent Science Board

Delta ISB meeting

On Thursday, October 7, 2021, Governor Newsom signed Senate Bill 821, which mandates that members of the Delta Independent Science Board shall not be employees of the Delta Stewardship Council, and that the Council shall issue contracts to pay the Delta Independent Science Board members at professional scientific rates. The Governor’s signing of SB 821 … Continue reading Governor Newsom signs SB 821, restoring compensation to Delta Independent Science Board

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

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

Tales from the Water Wars – The Passing Game

By Deirdre Des Jardins 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 … Continue reading Tales from the Water Wars – The Passing Game

Bill to restore compensation for Delta Independent Science Board languishes on Governor Newsom’s desk

Delta ISB meeting

Two decades ago, California agencies joined federal agencies in signing the CALFED Record of Decision, which committed to a world class Delta science program. A key part of that commitment was to establish an Independent Science Board to provide oversight and peer review of the overall program. In 2009, the legislature established the Delta Independent … Continue reading Bill to restore compensation for Delta Independent Science Board languishes on Governor Newsom’s desk

On scientific confluence and the challenges of avoiding a ghastly future in California water

Seventy years ago, psychologists Fritz Perls, Paul Hefferline, and Richard Goodman defined confluence as considering different viewpoints and assimilating them into one's own worldview [1]: At the end of any successful experience – one that is not interrupted but allowed to complete itself – there is always a confluence of energy or energy producing materials. … Continue reading On scientific confluence and the challenges of avoiding a ghastly future in California water

On DWR’s water supply models and drought risks

The Delta Independent Science Board has just released their draft Water Supply Reliability Review. We strongly agree with their recommendation on water supply system models: The next generation of state-sponsored water supply system models for reliability estimation should be built, updated, and evaluated by a broad consortium of state and federal agencies and external experts … Continue reading On DWR’s water supply models and drought risks

Resources Secretary sends letter to legislature on CEQA exemption in trailer bill

On Thursday,  September 9, Natural Resources Secretary Wade Crowfoot a letter to the members of the legislature regarding the controversial CEQA exemption in the Natural Resources trailer bill, AB/SB 155. Crowfoot's letter addressed objections to the trailer bill previously raised by Restore the Delta, stating: The proposed CEQA exemption may only be applied to habitat … Continue reading Resources Secretary sends letter to legislature on CEQA exemption in trailer bill

Natural Resources budget trailer bill would exempt habitat restoration projects from CEQA

Aerial photo of Franks Tract

SB 155, the Senate Natural Resources budget trailer bill, provides $593 million for projects that “advance multi-benefit and nature based solutions" this fiscal year, and another $175 million next fiscal year. Section 23 of the bill exempts the following projects from the California Environmental Quality Act: (1) A project to conserve, restore, protect, or enhance, … Continue reading Natural Resources budget trailer bill would exempt habitat restoration projects from CEQA

On a just transition for farmworker communities and farmworkers in the San Joaquin Valley

San Joaquin Valley communities are on the front lines of massive land fallowing due to drought and soil and groundwater salinization. Satellite imaging shows almost a million acres of land on the west side of the San Joaquin Valley and in the Tulare Lake region that is either moderately or severely impaired by salinity. In … Continue reading On a just transition for farmworker communities and farmworkers in the San Joaquin Valley