Voluntary Agreement framework consolidates power and inequities in California water

inclusion exclusion

The California Natural Resources agency released a Voluntary Agreement framework on Monday, March 29, 2022. The framework has been hailed as a "peace" agreement. Reading the Memorandum of Understanding, I find Hisham Ziuaddeen’s synthesis of how power operates across hierarchies of caste, gender, sexuality, ableness and class to be profoundly relevant. Ziuaddeen observed that power … Continue reading Voluntary Agreement framework consolidates power and inequities in California water

On the framework of power in California water – comments to the Delta Stewardship Council

Metropolitan Water District building

These comments were made to the Delta Stewardship Council at the October 28, 2021 meeting. I wanted to share with you some thoughts from Hisham Ziuaddeen, a psychiatrist and neuroscientist at University of Cambridge. He talked about frameworks of power. And I realized there is a framework of power in California water, and it determines: … Continue reading On the framework of power in California water – comments to the Delta Stewardship Council

A brief history of the water wars — comments to the Delta ISB

On Thursday March 10, 2022, the Delta Independent Science Board received presentations from Brooke Jacobs of the California Department of Fish and Wildlife on the Incidental Take Permit, and from Cathy Marcinkevage of the National Marine Fisheries Service and Kaylee Allen of the United States Fish and Wildlife Service on the Biological Opinions on the … Continue reading A brief history of the water wars — comments to the Delta ISB

Will State Water Contractors support disclosure of forecast SWP operations?

On January 22, 2022, Dan Bacher published an article, Why is California’s DWR increasing State Water Project allocations in the middle of a drought?  Jennifer Pierre, the General Manager for the State Water Contractors: tweeted the following response to the article: All of the allocated water is already in storage downstream of the Delta. It … Continue reading Will State Water Contractors support disclosure of forecast SWP operations?

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

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

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

TUCP: California Water Research asks Water Board to require report on 2021 runoff forecast errors

NWS May 2021 snowpack

California Water Research filed a protest of the May 17 Temporary Urgency Change Petition by the California Department of Water Resources and the US Bureau of Reclamation. We requested that the State Water Resources Control Board require a written report by DWR and USBR on the methodology used for the runoff forecast used in this … Continue reading TUCP: California Water Research asks Water Board to require report on 2021 runoff forecast errors

State Water Contractors objected to development of a drought operations strategy for the State Water Project and Central Valley Project

Lake Oroville March 2021

Our May 10, 2021 blog post, DWR Chief Engineer warned of climate change draining Northern California reservoirs explained how Francis Chung, the Department of Water Resources’ Bay-Delta modeling chief, sounded the alarm in 2010 that climate change could drain major Northern California reservoirs. Chung recommended that DWR develop a reoperation strategy for the State Water Project … Continue reading State Water Contractors objected to development of a drought operations strategy for the State Water Project and Central Valley Project

The “greedy” strategy for SWP and CVP reservoir operations

Current operations of the State Water Project and Central Valley Project reservoirs in the Sacramento Valley are an example of a greedy strategy.[1] Under the greedy strategy, the system operators export as much water as possible in any given year. The strategy results in maximum water deliveries in a given year, but with the risk … Continue reading The “greedy” strategy for SWP and CVP reservoir operations