Aquafornia news Associated Press

Monday’s Top of the Scroll: Earth is a wilder, warmer place since last climate deal made

This time, it’s a hotter, waterier, wilder Earth that world leaders are trying to save. … Some differences can be measured: degrees on a thermometer, trillions of tons of melting ice, a rise in sea level of a couple of inches.

Aquafornia news The Sacramento Bee

Drought squeezes duck hunters – that could be bad news for fowl

Largely lost in the statewide discussion about fallowed crops, depleted reservoirs and brown lawns, is the impact of California’s drought on hunting. The succession of four dry years has dried up many of the natural marshes and rice fields used by the estimated 55,000 people who hunt waterfowl in California.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

California’s hard-hit water districts will get a chance to ask regulators for relief

Gov. Jerry Brown’s latest executive order provisionally extends California’s drought restrictions into next fall and calls on the State Water Resources Control Board to consider adjusting the rules in the coming weeks.

Aquafornia news The Sacramento Bee

More California farmland could vanish as water shortages loom beyond drought

California’s Sustainable Groundwater Management Act, set to take effect in 2020, will limit how much groundwater can be extracted over the long haul. While details of what constitutes “sustainable” pumping are still being fleshed out, water policy experts say many farmers will gradually have their water supplies curtailed – and the nation’s leading agricultural state will farm fewer acres.

Aquafornia news Eureka Times-Standard

Eel River flows still too low in peak salmon spawning period

This month’s rainfall and cooler temperatures have helped lessen the strain on salmon migrating on the Eel River, but not near enough to ease the concerns of local researchers. And they have their reasons.

Aquafornia news San Jose Mercury News

Project to drain largest reservoir in Santa Clara County a year behind schedule

State regulators ordered a few years ago that the vast lake near Morgan Hill in Santa Clara County — which holds more water than the other nine reservoirs in the county combined — could not be filled any more than 68 percent full because geologic tests found that in a major earthquake, its 240-foot high earthen dam could slump, releasing a wall of water that could generate a trail of death and destruction all the way to San Jose.

Aquafornia news Stockton Record

Delta research center proposed

The Delta is one of the most closely studied river estuaries in the world. But the scientists who are studying it are dispersed across the region, in different offices and in different towns.

Aquafornia news The Modesto Bee

Modesto Irrigation District to seek more water income for higher-tech meters

Whether Modesto-area farmers are willing to cover the cost of fancy water delivery meters – about $4.5 million – will be seen next year in a vote of Modesto Irrigation District growers. Particulars, including how much farmers might expect to see water bills rise, are unknown.

Aquafornia news San Bernardino County Sun and San Gabriel Valley Tribune

What local, state officials are doing to prepare for El Niño

Whether it’s the most powerful El Niño on record or the second most, Caltrans, San Bernardino County officials and numerous law enforcement officials are taking the threat seriously, officials said.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Los Angeles considers suspending trash pickup when heavy rainfall is forecast

When a sudden, powerful storm pummeled Boyle Heights in October, one poorly placed mattress wreaked havoc on the neighborhood.

Aquafornia news San Jose Mercury News

San Jose: City officials prepare Alviso for El Niño

Like many other residents in San Jose’s bayside community of Alviso whose homes suffered damage in the devastating storm, [Esther] Alday believes the city failed to prepare for and quickly respond to massive flooding back then. And she has her doubts when she hears city officials promise it won’t happen again.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Northern California town colder than Barrow, Alaska, as deep freeze intensifies

According to the National Weather Service, it was actually colder in Alturas, Calif., the seat of Modoc County in the far northeastern corner California, than it was in Barrow, Alaska, which lies above the Arctic Circle and is the northernmost city in the United States.

Aquafornia news The Sacramento Bee

November ends with below-average rainfall, but December will get an early storm

There’s little sign of El Nino in Sacramento, where November’s rainfall total has come up more than an inch short of average.

Aquafornia news The Fresno Bee

November storms bring improved rain total to Fresno

It is still too early to say whether the hoped-for El Niño will bring copious amounts of rain and snow to Central California, but this November will end with Fresno exceeding the 10-year average for rainfall, the National Weather Service said Sunday.

Aquafornia news Bay Area News Group

Brentwood’s good summer water conservation came at a price

The city’s [Brentwood] response to the drought has been engaging, innovative and effective. As it stands now, officials say residents here have slashed their water use by nearly half of what it was in 2013.

Aquafornia news The Desert Sun

Salton Sea activists want Mexican water fix

A small group of activists and concerned local residents gathered Saturday to raise money and awareness for their push to restore the dying Salton Sea. … Many at Saturday’s event support another option: piping in water from Mexico’s Sea of Cortez, also known as the Gulf of California, to refill the Salton Sea.

Aquafornia news Yale Environment 360

For storing electricity, utilities are turning to pumped hydro

To help accommodate the increased supply of wind, Spain’s utilities have turned not to high-tech, 21st-century batteries, but rather to a time-tested 19th-century technology — pumped storage hydroelectricity.  … In the United States, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission issued licenses for two projects in 2014, both in California. 

Aquafornia news KQED Science

Flying into the heart of the West’s biggest storms (with audio)

Since last winter’s flights, the CalWater team has been busy crunching numbers in the lab, and the researchers are starting to release results. With just these flights, the researchers were able to triple the number of atmospheric rivers studied in detail.

Aquafornia news Bay Area News Group

El Niño pushes California calamari landings down

The squid are responding to this year’s El Niño conditions, scientists say, but whether their numbers are declining or they’re simply eluding fishermen is unknown, according to California Department of Fish and Wildlife environmental scientist Laura Ryley.

Aquafornia news Marin Independent Journal

Projects near Muir Woods aim to improve fish habitat, public safety

A plan to re-align the Redwood Creek Trail and extend the Dias Ridge Trail with stated goals of improving fish habitat and public safety are now open for public comment.