It’s one thing to streamline environmental reviews for a major project, which happened for the Golden 1 Center in downtown Sacramento. It’s entirely another to dismiss any environmental lawsuits and prevent others from being filed. That’s what a Southern California congressman is trying to do, to clear the path for the highly contentious $17 billion Delta tunnels project.
The San Joaquin Valley is ground zero for groundwater management challenges. While agriculture is the region’s predominant water user, its cities are more likely to rely on groundwater as their primary source of water. For this reason, the urban sector will need to play a bigger role in the regional effort to balance groundwater use and replenishment.
California State Parks and the California Department of Water Resources (DWR) today [May 22] announced the Thermalito Diversion Pool and trails along its northern shore at Lake Oroville State Recreation Area will be open to the public for Memorial Day weekend, from Friday through Monday, 8 a.m. to sunset. … Not only will the public be able to use the Diversion Pool and the Brad Freeman Trail, they will also get a safe and up-close view of ongoing construction at the Lake Oroville spillways.
The California Department of Water Resources announced Monday this year’s allocation has been raised to 35 percent of full distribution, or 1.48 million acre-feet of water statewide. (One acre foot is enough to cover one acre of land with a foot of water.) As of last month, the agency planned to distribute only 30 percent of normal.
The controversy over Nestlé’s bottled water operation in the San Bernardino National Forest has prompted a review of the company’s federal permit, a lawsuit and an investigation by California regulators. Now, Nestlé’s continued piping of water out of the San Bernardino Mountains has become an issue in a congressional campaign.
The last time California voters passed a statewide ballot measure to provide funding for parks, beaches, wildlife and forests, it was 2006. Arnold Schwarzenegger was in his first term as governor, Twitter was a fledgling app, and the iPhone hadn’t been invented yet. Since then, California’s population has grown from 36 million to 39.5 million — the equivalent of adding a new San Francisco, San Jose and San Diego.
The boat ramps at Copco and Iron Gate reservoirs are temporarily closed through June, and possibly later, due to a draw-down of water requested for use by Bureau of Reclamation for Klamath Project irrigators. … Reclamation will use the water to keep elevations up to standard at Upper Klamath Lake and to support water deliveries to Klamath Project irrigators to cover a shortfall until water deliveries to the Klamath Project take place in June.
The second and final phase of reconstruction continues at the Oroville Dam spillways. … A flight over the location last week during a break in Butte County Sheriff’s Office helicopter training exercise, showed that much original concrete at the top of the chute has been removed, along with the walls.
The town of Mammoth Lakes, in California’s eastern Sierra Nevada, is generally known for two things: epic skiing in winter, thanks to the very high elevation of its ski mountain; and volcanic activity, because the mountain is a simmering volcano. It’s normal to hike or ski around Mammoth and smell the sulfurous gases venting from gurgling magma deep under the mountain. That magma is also a rich source of geothermal power.
In his [Environmental Protection Agency chief Scott Pruitt] first address to career employees last year he told the gathered room at the EPA, “Regulators exist to give certainty to those that they regulate. Those that we regulate ought to know what we expect of them, so that they can plan and allocate resources to comply.” He’s cited this in his efforts to delay, repeal or roll back the Clean Power Plan, the Waters of the U.S. Rule, and a string of other measures.
Joel Nelsen, president of California Citrus Mutual, said business is down considerably for Valley farmers. Major citrus shippers were sending 15 loads of lemons or oranges a week before China put restrictions on the import/export process. Now, shippers, are sending just three loads — about 3,000 cartons of lemons and even fewer Valencia oranges.
Lack of rainfall and above-average temperatures are prolonging the drought conditions that have stressed crops and rangelands and placed new pressures on groundwater sources across the U.S. Southern Plains, climatologists from the region said Monday.
Four Senate Democrats asked Scott Pruitt on Monday for details about a new legal defense fund to help the Environmental Protection Agency administrator as he weathers a series of federal ethics investigations.
Enough of this “pasteurization without representation,” protested Rep. Thomas Massie. The Kentucky Republican wants to make it easier for small-scale farmers to sell raw milk, and his outrage spilled onto the House floor.
If you love to obsess about your water bill or just want to know more about how much water you use, than the city of Fresno has an app for you. City officials rolled out the EyeOnWater app on Monday as a way for residents to better understand their water usage.
A proposed San Anselmo flood control project would reduce the flood risk for more than 500 properties in the Ross Valley during a 25-year flood, but could cause problems for others if barriers are not placed in the creek, according to a draft environmental impact report.
Lassen Peak had been rumbling for days. Glowing hot rocks bounded down the slopes. Lava was welling up into a freshly created crater. Then, on this day 103 years ago, it exploded in a way California would never forget.
In the past few weeks, researchers, whale watchers and ocean lovers have found unusually large numbers of balloons washing up on beaches or floating out at sea. Those plastic ribbons, shiny mylar plastic and stretchy latex can have nasty and permanent effects on the wildlife that encounter them.
Del Mar’s City Council agreed Monday night that “planned retreat” will not be part of its long-term strategy for dealing with sea-level rise, despite the state Coastal Commission’s request to include the idea. Planned retreat, also called “managed retreat,” is a strategy of removing seawalls, roads, homes and other structures gradually over the years in advance of rising sea levels.