Aquafornia news The Fresno Bee

Monday’s Top of the Scroll: A first for delta water pumping — Voluntary cutback to protect fish

On New Year’s Eve 2012, the Sierra had 140% of the normal December snowpack and rivers swelled with storm runoff. But strangely, a crippling reduction of water pumping had already begun in Northern California. The muddy Sacramento River and mammoth water pumps had created a death trap for the protected delta smelt.

Aquafornia news The Sacramento Bee

Sierra snowpack encouraging, but more storms needed to keep it deep

Buoyed by big December storms, the snowpack is about 150 percent of where it usually is at this time in the year, according to the California Department of Water Resources. And more may be on the way, weather forecasters said.

Aquafornia news Riverside Press-Enterprise

Salton Sea struggles to survive

It’s hard to imagine that this quiet place once drew more visitors than Yosemite National Park. Back then, the Salton Sea was a boom town, rising out of the desert like a Las Vegas or a Palm Springs. The American Riviera, as it was known, was full of glamour and promise.

Aquafornia news Las Vegas Review-Journal

Colorado River Delta plants making comeback

A spring release of water has reversed a 13-year trend of decline in plant and wildlife in the Colorado River Delta, according to findings released by scientists this month.

Aquafornia news The Sacramento Bee

‘Wild’ fish make a comeback in Putah Creek

Putah Creek, an often-muddy stream that meanders through Yolo County, has been through a lot in the past 150 years. … Through it all, giant rainbow trout have somehow managed to thrive in Putah Creek. And earlier this month, the California Fish and Game Commission recognized that feat by designating the creek a “Wild Trout Water,” a distinction meant to ensure the creek always remains healthy for self-sustaining trout.

Aquafornia news The Sacramento Bee

Yurok tribe hopes California’s cap-and-trade can save a way of life

Instead of preparing to sell lumber, as it has in the past, the state’s largest Indian tribe is taking stock of its firs, redwoods and tanoaks to make money in California’s cap-and-trade program.

Aquafornia news Marin Independent Journal

Mt. Tam watershed reservoirs near capacity from recent storms

Unlike the rest of California, the drought is over for the moment in Marin County.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Recent storms send Yosemite waterfalls rushing back

In other winters it was a sight to behold, but to be expected. This year, the return of Yosemite’s waterfalls was more.

Aquafornia news San Jose Mercury News

San Jose: Overwhelmed pumps led to Alviso flooding; residents say it’s a ‘wake-up call’

When the last big December storm was at its peak, overflowing storm drains and flash-flooding streets gave San Jose’s bayside community of Alviso an all-too-real reminder that if not for the levees and pumps, they’d be underwater.

Aquafornia news NBC News

Christmas week storm threatens holiday travel chaos

Lashing rains, high winds and thunderstorms look set to mess up holiday travel plans for millions of Americans this week as the country heads for a mostly wet — not white — Christmas.

Aquafornia news San Francisco Chronicle

A couple days of no Bay Area rain: Here comes the sun

The Bay Area developed a warm glow Sunday on account of a once-familiar friend known as the sun. … National Weather Service forecasters reckon the fiery orb will be sticking around until Christmas Eve.

Aquafornia news San Francisco Chronicle

Storms bring forth prehistoric treasures

In the wake of December’s storms, treasure hunters and scientists have found fossils on beaches and in sandstone cliffs in the Bay Area and elsewhere along the Pacific Coast that date back anywhere from 5,000 to 10 million years.

Aquafornia news Contra Costa Times

Commentary: Southern California and conservation — Respecting water’s limits

This paper recently questioned Southern California’s commitment to water conservation based on a single month (“Southern California’s Sad Conservation Record” — Dec. 13). Had the editorial examined roughly 50 years of Southern California’s conservation performance — success over the past generation and plans for no additional supplies from Northern California in the generation ahead, perhaps the conclusion would have been different.

Aquafornia news Tahoe Daily Tribune

Commentary: Bi-state compact approved 45 years ago

Forty-five years ago, in December 1969, President Richard Nixon signed a unique Bi-State Compact approving California and Nevada’s plan to create the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency. It was the first such undertaking of its kind, uniting two states, six local jurisdictions, and the federal government in a shared mission to protect Lake Tahoe’s sensitive environment from overdevelopment.

Aquafornia news The Sacramento Bee

Commentary: The answer on human-caused climate change is in

Earth is in a remarkable transition from a world in which human influence on climate has been negligible to one in which our influence is increasingly dominant. One of the most active research areas in the climate sciences is the field of detection and attribution: the effort to see and identify the fingerprint of climate change in our extremes of weather.

Aquafornia news Riverside Press-Enterprise

Commentary: Unleashing the produce police

Come Jan. 1, California food vendors will face steeper fees and an extra layer of bureaucracy if they wish to peddle products at their area farmer’s markets.

Aquafornia news San Gabriel Valley Tribune

Commentary: Just the facts, California style

My copy of the “Cal Facts” book arrived on my desk Monday with a thud, a gift from thousands of number-crunching, bureaucratic elves from the north in the Legislative Analyst’s Office. … Time for a quiz: What is California’s top farm commodity: a. grapes. b. almonds c. strawberries d. milk.

Aquafornia news Maven's Notebook

Blog: Water agencies and Restore the Delta react to Bay Delta Conservation Plan revisions

Last Friday, the California Natural Resources Agency announced changes to the Bay Delta Conservation Plan, most notably the elimination of the pumping plants and instead, using a gravity flow diversion. 

Aquafornia news California WaterBlog by UC Davis Center for Watershed Sciences

Blog: Drought a ghost of Christmas past — and present

I love this cartoon because it says so much about water and droughts in California. Alan Marciochi drew this during the 1976-77 drought. He knew what he was drawing. A farm boy from Los Banos with a degree in biology, Alan worked for me studying endangered Modoc suckers in remote northeastern corner of California. His main stipulation in working for me was that he had to have the melon harvest season free.

Aquafornia news Redding Record Searchlight

Blog: Eleven trillion gallons to go

Temperature is all that matters. Ten trillion gallons could fall from the sky tomorrow but if it doesn’t freeze and hold still as snow and ice in the mountains, what good is it?