In increasing State Water Project allocations, DWR is taking huge risks

The Department of Water Resources has just announced that they are increasing the State Water Project allocations to 15%. Given the huge problems last year with watershed runoff forecasts, DWR is taking a huge risk of not meeting environmental water needs later in the year. In November 2021, nine scientists from leading California water research … Continue reading In increasing State Water Project allocations, DWR is taking huge risks

The high cost of increasing almond yields

The water use of California's huge almond industry is becoming a major issue in groundwater basins throughout the state.  A searing article in the LA Times by Maria L. La Ganga, Gabrielle LaMarr LeMee and Ian James states that 2021 is on track to see the most agricultural wells drilled since the last drought ended. … Continue reading The high cost of increasing almond yields

California water whiplash predicted in 2012 study

Tree in wet and dry landscape

Water whiplash  in California was predicted in a 2012 study by Sarah Null and Josh Viers, funded by the California Energy Commission's PIER program. The study shows the importance of independent research. At the time of Null and Viers' CEC study, the Department of Water Resources' climate change simulation methods used Global Circulation Model (GCM) … Continue reading California water whiplash predicted in 2012 study

Tales from the Water Wars — On Facing Fears

Bear Grylls is a British soldier who spent three years as a soldier in the British Special Forces.  He broke his back in three places in a parachuting accident and spent many months in military rehabilitation  He recovered and went on to become one of the youngest climbers ever to reach the summit of Mount Everest. Bear … Continue reading Tales from the Water Wars — On Facing Fears

Tales from the Water Wars — Westlands Accident

In 2011, I wrote the report, Mendota: Evidence that soil and groundwater salinization is the predominant cause of land fallowing. Eventually Westlands Water District officials admitted that there was over 100,000 acres of land in the District that had been retired from irrigated production. (Westlands’ 2017 Water Management Plan shows that 176,000 acres had been … Continue reading Tales from the Water Wars — Westlands Accident

We need to plan for unprecedented flooding in California

This year we have seen unprecedented flooding in Europe and on the East Coast. We’ve also just seen unprecedented flooding in British Columbia. As David Wallace Wells reports in "This Is What Happens When One Climate Disaster Follows Another," The impacts have been significantly greater than expected,” acknowledged Mike Farnworth, the deputy premier of British Columbia, echoing … Continue reading We need to plan for unprecedented flooding in California

Responses to COP26 and the attack/flight catastrophe model

The outcome of COP26 has evoked very divergent responses from different climate scientists and activists. Climate scientist Katherine Hayhoe tweeted, Is #COP26 enough? No. Did anyone expect it to be enough? I sure didn't; this is a more ambitious effort to work together than anything we humans have ever, ever accomplished. But is it more … Continue reading Responses to COP26 and the attack/flight catastrophe model

Mountain and polar groups urgently call for more time at COP26

The California’s Ocean Protection Council's 2018 Sea Level Rise Guidance projects up to 2 meters (6.9 feet) of sea level rise by 2100 [1].  In 2019, researchers at the US Geological Survey published a study of the risk from inundation from up to 2 m of sea level rise plus 100 year storm surge (Barnard … Continue reading Mountain and polar groups urgently call for more time at COP26

For California water management, delay is denial of climate change impacts

Climate scientist Michael Mann wrote an Op Ed in the LA Times, On the climate crisis, delay has become the new form of denial. The Op Ed has many concepts that resonate with what is happening with California water management. Mann argues: One can no longer credibly deny that climate change is real, human-caused, and a … Continue reading For California water management, delay is denial of climate change impacts

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