Water news you need to know

Subscribe via RSS

Or subscribe to our weekday emails to have top water news delivered to your inbox about 9 a.m. Monday through Friday except for holidays.

Follow us on Twitter for breaking news.

Aquafornia news Water Deeply

Tuesday’s Top of the Scroll: Long road still ahead for California’s Delta tunnels plan

A decision by California’s largest water supplier on April 10 ended months of uncertainty over its role in the funding of California Water Fix, the state’s plan to build new water conveyance infrastructure in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta. … Financing is not the only issue that needs to be addressed. There is still a long list of regulatory and legal hurdles the project needs to clear.

Aquafornia news San Jose Mercury News

California’s future: More big droughts and floods, study finds

The extreme weather swings experienced by Californians the past six years — a historic drought followed by drenching winter storms that caused $100 million in damage to San Jose and wrecked the spillway at Oroville Dam — will become the norm over coming generations, a new study has found.

Aquafornia news The Desert Sun

Eastern Coachella Valley gains influence on water politics

[Arcelia] Duarte is the owner of the Duarte Mobile Home Park near Thermal as well as one of its residents. As normal as her family’s home may appear to visitors, the park’s residents are faced with an issue most of California’s urban dwellers would struggle to fathom: Their water, which comes from a local well, is contaminated by naturally occurring arsenic and bacteria.

Aquafornia news Chico Enterprise-Record

USGS quake monitors pick up vibrations at Oroville Dam construction site

The U.S. Geological Survey over the last year has recorded dozens of weak and shallow earthquakes near Oroville Dam and its spillways. And nearly all the tremors — including a magnitude-0.8 quake recorded Wednesday — share the same designation: “Chemical explosion.”

Aquafornia news The San Diego Union-Tribune

Congresswoman wants Navy to help fight Mexican sewage spills

[Rep. Susan] Davis, a San Diego Democrat on the House Armed Services Committee, has grown concerned about untreated sewage leaking from Tijuana’s aging and overworked wastewater collection and treatment system, a problem exacerbated by surges of fecal contamination when Mexican pipes break, pumps fail and rain falls.

Aquafornia news The Desert Sun

Gavin Newsom: Salton Sea at ‘tipping point’

Lt. Governor Gavin Newsom visited the Salton Sea on Thursday to witness up close the environmental and public health perils facing the communities surrounding the sea’s shrinking shoreline. … Newsom was in town because he sits on the California State Lands Commission, which met in Palm Springs later in the day. 

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Climate change will make California’s drought-flood cycle more volatile, study finds

Californians should expect more dramatic swings between dry and wet years as the climate warms, according to a new study that found it likely that the state will be hit by devastating, widespread flooding in coming decades.

Aquafornia news The Sacramento Bee

Some serious ‘precipitation whiplash’ predicted for the state

In a study published Monday in the scientific journal Nature Climate Change, the scientists say climate change will increasingly expose California to a phenomenon they call “precipitation whiplash,” in which drought or drought-like conditions will alternate with intensely rainy winters. … The article’s conclusions could be particularly troubling for Sacramento, which is generally considered the second-most flood-prone major city in America after New Orleans.

Aquafornia news Santa Rosa Press Democrat

Sonoma County solar power plant on wastewater ponds canceled

A combination of factors, including President Donald Trump’s tariff on imported solar panels, have prompted cancellation of a major solar power project on six wastewater holding ponds in Sonoma County.

Aquafornia news Marin Independent Journal

Marin oversight panel renews call for sanitation mergers

Disposal of sewage is something most people would rather not think about, but that reluctance is costing Marin residents a pretty penny, according to a new Marin County Civil Grand Jury report. The report, released Friday, recommends immediate consolidation of three sanitary districts in central Marin — Sanitary District No. 1 (Ross Valley), Sanitary District No. 2 (Corte Madera) and the San Rafael Sanitary District.

Aquafornia news KPCC Southern California Public Radio

Some Los Angeles, San Bernardino county cities asked to limit water use amid pipeline repairs

Residents of several Southern California communities are being asked to limit water use this week while a major pipeline is closed for repairs. Starting Monday, the state Department of Water Resources will be fixing a portion of the Rialto Pipeline, which serves cities in parts of Los Angeles and San Bernardino counties.

Aquafornia news The Fresno Bee

California peach canners feeling sour over schools buying imported food

Is your kid eating canned peaches from China at school? If so, California peach farmers aren’t happy about it. The state’s canned peach industry is behind an effort in Congress to tighten the rules for buying imported food for the federal school lunch program.

Aquafornia news Appeal-Democrat

Mathews resigns from Yuba County Water Agency committee over groundwater initiative

Yuba County Water Agency board member Charlie Mathews resigned last week from one of the committees he serves on over what he said was an attempt by the water agency to quash an initiative he is proposing. An official with the agency said it’s Mathews’ way to have discussions out of the public’s eye.

Aquafornia news Undark

In the fate of the Delta smelt, warnings of conservation gone wrong

Peter Moyle, an eminent authority on the ecology and conservation of California’s fishes, stands on the narrow deck of a survey boat and gazes out over the sloughs of Suisun Marsh. The tall, tubular stems of tule reeds bend in the wind as a flock of pelicans soars past, their white wings edged in black. It’s an idyllic scene that hints at an earlier time, back before the Gold Rush, when undisturbed creeks and tidal marsh covered the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta.

Aquafornia news Capital Public Radio

California protects Tricolored Blackbird as a threatened species

“Tricolored Blackbirds are really California’s blackbird,” said Samantha Arthur with Audubon California. She applauds the California Fish and Game Commission’s recent decision to list Tricolored Blackbirds as threatened under the California Endangered Species Act.

Aquafornia news The Bakersfield Californian

Grant to help restore ‘the forest below the bluffs’

A century and a half ago, the land below the Panorama Bluffs was carpeted with elderberry and cottonwood, oak and sycamore, honey mesquite and mule fat — a shrub also known as water-wally. The now-endangered Bakersfield cactus bloomed on the hillsides, and coyote and bobcat prowled the trails as red-tailed hawks patrolled the skies and beavers built dams in the nearby waters of the Kern River.

Aquafornia news NPR

For 50 years, deep-water trawls likely caught more fish than anyone thought

Long before it lands on a restaurant menu, Chilean sea bass takes quite a journey to arrive on land. To catch these deep-sea dwellers, fishers usually drag nets along the ocean floor a quarter of a mile, or more, beneath the ocean’s surface — a form of fishing called bottom trawling.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Officials: Stolen California succulents, smuggled to Asia

State wildlife officials say they have uncovered an international scheme in which thieves from Korea and China slip into wild landscapes in Northern California to pluck succulents to sell on the thriving black market in Asia.

Aquafornia news The Harvard Crimson

In drought-stricken Central California, Harvard hopes to turn water into wine

Few people choose to live in Cuyama Valley. With a population of less than 1,000 residents, according to the 2010 U.S. Census, the 300-square mile area is home to large, empty expanses of ranch and agricultural land. Less than a foot of water graces the parched earth of Cuyama each year, making the region one of the driest regions of Central California.

Aquafornia news Brookings

Commentary: Why the climate challenge needs congressional action

President Trump has aimed to undo much of the Obama administration’s policy on energy and climate. … One could argue that any of the leading candidates in the 2016 Republican primary would have taken similar actions in the climate and energy space. What is needed now, we argue, is momentum toward bipartisan climate legislation in Congress that could outlast the back-and-forth on regulations.