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Aquafornia news The Sacramento Bee

Thursday’s Top of the Scroll: California water agency gets scolded: Speed up spending billions on new reservoirs

Assembly Republican Leader Brian Dahle, pulling a child’s red wagon, arrived at a meeting of the California Water Commission with a stack of petitions with 4,000 signatures supporting the two largest reservoir projects seeking bond money: Sites Reservoir north of Sacramento and Temperance Flat in the San Joaquin Valley.

Aquafornia news Stockton Record

Delta tunnels hearing lunges forward

State officials declined again Wednesday to delay a hearing that could lead to the issuance of a critical permit to build the governor’s $17 billion Delta tunnels. … A delay at this point, officials with the State Water Resources Control Board wrote, “would be both premature and needlessly disruptive.”

Aquafornia news Water Education Foundation

San Joaquin Valley’s water issues and challenges explored on Central Valley Tour March 14-16

Weave through the nation’s breadbasket and get a better understanding of water issues and challenges in the San Joaquin Valley on the Foundation’s Central Valley Tour March 14-16.  Sign-ups are now underway for the tour, the first of the Foundation’s six general tours for 2018.  The Central Valley Tour visits farms and major infrastructure, such as Friant Dam near Fresno and San Luis Reservoir, the nation’s largest off-stream reservoir and a key water facility serving both the State Water Project and the federal Central Valley Project.

Aquafornia news Stockton Record

San Joaquin Valley water users, cut off during drought, win a round in court

Thousands of water-right holders who were told to cease diversions during the last drought were deprived of due process, a judge found Wednesday, raising questions about how the state will handle future shortages. … At the center of the legal dispute was the Byron-Bethany Irrigation District near Tracy.

Aquafornia news Appeal-Democrat

DWR: Work on emergency spillway nearing completion

Though the final phase of repair work on the main spillway at Lake Oroville is now on the back burner until spring, Department of Water Resources officials said crews are making significant progress on repairing the emergency spillway.

Aquafornia news San Bernardino Sun

Nestlé takes issue with state report on water extractions in San Bernardino Mountains

With the comment period now over, state officials have begun their review of 30 separate filings in response to an investigation of Nestlé’s withdrawal of millions of gallons annually from springs in the San Bernardino National Forest for its Arrowhead Mountain Spring Water brand of bottled water.

Aquafornia news The Union, Serving Western Nevada County

Anti-dam activists rally to show opposition to Centennial reservoir

The California Water Commission, which is evaluating the Nevada Irrigation District’s application in pursuit of state funding for the proposed Centennial dam, was greeted by a surprise group of visitors Wednesday. Dressed in lifejackets and wielding kayak paddles, about 60 demonstrators stood outside the Commission’s monthly meeting in Sacramento Wednesday to show their opposition to the Centennial project on the Bear River.

Aquafornia news Chico Enterprise-Record

Lessons from Oroville spillway helpful for next disaster

Until February 2017, the calls that came to Butte 2-1-1 ranged from quelling stress, and finding support organizations, to locating low-cost diapers. But for a few weeks after the Oroville Dam spillway disaster, the calls were desperate, seeking evacuation routes, hunting for surviving relatives, and wondering when residents could return home.

Aquafornia news Eureka Times-Standard

Seven cities, districts support Mercer-Fraser cannabis project appeal

Seven cities and community services districts have backed the Humboldt Bay Municipal Water District’s appeal of a controversial Mercer-Fraser Company project that seeks to build a cannabis manufacturing facility along the Mad River near Glendale.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Salt marshes will vanish in less than a century if seas keep rising and California keeps building, study finds

Coastal wetlands such as Bolinas Lagoon in Marin County, the marshes along Morro Bay and the ecological preserve in Newport Beach can purify the air, cleanse urban runoff before it flows into the sea and reduce flooding by absorbing storm surges like a sponge. But there’s little room left for this ecosystem along the changing Pacific Coast, as the sea continues to rise and Californians continue to develop the shore. 

Aquafornia news Water Deeply

Deeply Talks: Groundwater banking potential (with audio)

In this episode of Deeply Talks, Tara Lohan, Water Deeply’s managing editor, speaks with Philip Bachand, a water engineer and founder of the environmental engineering firm, Bachand & Associates; Daniel Mountjoy, the director of resource stewardship at Sustainable Conservation; and Don Cameron, vice president and general manager of Terranova Ranch, about recharging groundwater and the crucial role that farms can play in this important effort.

Aquafornia news East Bay Times

Snow today in Sierra Nevada, more storms to follow

A winter storm is expected to drop several inches of new snow Thursday in the Sierra Nevada, and meteorologists with the National Weather Service are optimistic more systems will follow in the coming days. Thursday’s storm, which could deliver 6 to 10 inches of snow in the higher elevations, comes on the heels of a system Monday that brought as much as 7 inches of fresh powder to Tahoe area ski resorts.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Tahoe ski resort develops plan to adapt to low-snow seasons

A Lake Tahoe ski resort is developing a plan to improve skiing during low-snow seasons by removing boulders and trees from several runs. Heavenly Mountain Resort’s plan calls for widening a dozen trails and removing potentially hundreds or even thousands of trees.

Aquafornia news The Modesto Bee

Almond trees could get a well-deserved drink

Area farmers have been out and about even earlier than normal this week, watching the skies and their thermometers as temperatures dropped below freezing during a crucial time for their almond trees.

Aquafornia news San Francisco Chronicle

With only a trickle of water, Yosemite’s ‘firefall’ still puts on show

Amid a year marked by low rainfall, there was some concern that Yosemite’s famous “firefall” would be running dry in February.

Aquafornia news San Francisco Chronicle

Joining the ‘5 Percent Club’ at Mount Shasta

At tree line, we [Tom Stienstra] peered up the mountain bowl to the ridge spiked by 11,135-foot Shastarama Point and beyond to 12,923-foot Thumb Rock. … To the southwest, a huge spaceship-like lenticular cloud loomed over the Trinity Divide. A light breeze out of the south blew up the canyon and into the high country of 14,179-foot Mount Shasta.

Aquafornia news Water Deeply

After signing of Blackfeet Nation water rights compact, funding still needed

When the Blackfeet Nation of Montana last year approved a water rights compact with the federal government that had taken more than three decades to negotiate, it was only the beginning. The deal quantifies the tribe’s water rights for the first time and provides for more than $470 million in state and federal funding for water projects and related initiatives, but securing that money will involve further negotiations that are likely to be slow going.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Mexican authorities find illegal avocado plantations in monarch butterfly reserve

Monarch butterflies migrate from the U.S. and Canada to Mexican pine and fir forests that thrive at about the same altitude as prime avocado-growing land. Previously, deforestation linked to lucrative avocado planting had been seen in areas to the west and south of the reserve.

Aquafornia news UC Davis Center for Watershed Sciences

Blog: Advice on voluntary settlements for California’s Bay-Delta Water Quality Control Plan Part 2

The State Water Board is preparing a new Bay-Delta Water Quality Control Plan. Parties affected by this plan are attempting to negotiate voluntary settlement agreements for the Board to consider. A group of us — experts on the Delta and not part of any negotiations or representing any interested parties — have come up with a series of recommendations to help inform these negotiations. This is the second in a series of three blog posts that reflect our discussions and conclusions.

Aquafornia news California Department of Water Resources

News Release: Lake Oroville spillways construction updates

Today [Feb. 21] the Department of Water Resources (DWR) provided an update on construction activities for the Lake Oroville Spillways Emergency Recovery Project. … Phase Two of construction on the main spillway is expected to begin in May, but exact timing depends on weather.