Infrastructure

Overview

Infrastructure

“Infrastructure” in general can be defined as the components and equipment needed to operate, as well as the structures needed for, public works systems. Typical examples include roads, bridges, sewers and water supply systems.Various dams and infrastructural buildings have given Californians and the West the opportunity to control water, dating back to the days of Native Americans.

Water management infrastructure focuses on the parts, including pipes, storage reservoirs, pumps, valves, filtration and treatment equipment and meters, as well as the buildings to house process and treatment equipment. Irrigation infrastructure includes reservoirs, irrigation canals. Major flood control infrastructure includes dikes, levees, major pumping stations and floodgates.

Aquafornia news The New York Times

Trump’s ‘Great National Infrastructure Program’? stalled

As a candidate, President Trump billed himself as a new breed of think-big Republican, pitching a $1 trillion campaign pledge to reconstruct the nation’s roadways, waterworks and bridges — along with a promise to revive the lost art of the bipartisan deal.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Thursday’s Top of the Scroll: EPA promoting millions in funding for water programs

The Environmental Protection Agency is considering a dozen proposed water and sewer projects for a program that uses $25 million in federal funds to help secure billions in additional public and private financing.

Aquafornia news PolitiFact California/Capital Public Radio

McCarthy ignores key facts in claim on California water storage

One of the biggest backers for building new dams and reservoirs in California is House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy of Bakersfield. … As part of his push for the bill, H.R. 23, McCarthy made a claim about the dearth of water storage construction in the state in recent decades.

Aquafornia news The San Diego Union-Tribune

San Diego’s effort to turn sewage into drinking water could get huge financial boost from feds

The federal government is poised to invest as much as $492 million to get Pure Water, the city of San Diego’s effort to turn sewage into drinking water, off the ground. Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is expected to announce that San Diego is one of a dozen applicants chosen to participate in a low-interest loan program under the Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act.

Aquafornia news The Sacramento Bee

Oroville Dam repairs would benefit from multibillion-dollar ballot measure

With California’s drought fresh on voters’ minds, a longtime water activist is asking their approval for a veritable wish list of water and other environmental projects costing billions – from fixing Oroville Dam’s cratered spillway to improving the watershed of the Tijuana River.

Aquafornia news San Jose Mercury News

Water district looking to buy land to construct reservoir

In a significant step toward construction of the Bay Area’s first major new reservoir in nearly two decades, Silicon Valley’s largest water provider has begun negotiations to buy more than 12,000 acres of rural ranch land — an area nearly half the size of San Francisco.

Aquafornia news Marin Independent Journal

Marin sues energy companies over climate risks

Marin County sued 37 oil, gas and coal companies Monday asserting the companies knew their fossil fuel products would cause sea level rise and coastal flooding but failed to reduce their greenhouse gas pollution. The lawsuit was part of a coordinated litigation attack by Marin, San Mateo County and the city of Imperial Beach.

Aquafornia news Appeal-Democrat

Political Notes: Dam safety bill advances

A bill that requires two state agencies to re-evaluate dam inspection reports and sets new rules for the reports unanimously passed in the Senate Natural Resources Committee. 

Aquafornia news Stockton Record

More details as Twin Tunnels decision nears

A giant Southern California water district that could decide whether to invest in the Delta tunnels as soon as September has released the first of three “white papers” which are expected to address some unresolved issues.

Aquafornia news The Fresno Bee

San Joaquin Valley farmers meet with U.S. Sen. Harris

Agricultural leaders and farmers pressed their case for a reliable water supply, immigration reform and their fair share of the Farm Bill during a roundtable discussion with Sen. Kamala Harris on Wednesday. Harris is the former attorney general who won election last November in the race to replace outgoing Democrat Barbara Boxer.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

U.S. Sen. Harris works to forge relationship with Central Valley

The meeting between [U.S. Sen. Kamala] Harris and nearly two dozen agriculture and water officials was meant to ease what is typically a fraught relationship between the state’s Democratic leaders — all of whose power bases are in metropolitan areas — and the mostly Republican Central Valley powers that traditionally look at them with skepticism.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

More than 200 state highway bridges prone to erosion from surging waters slated for repairs or replacement

Using GPS and sonar equipment, it didn’t take [Kevin] Flora [state Department of Transportation engineer] long to find what he was looking for: holes up to 10 feet deep and 30 feet wide in the riverbed and around the foundations of the bridge that carries an average of 282,000 vehicles a day just north of the Orange County line.

Aquafornia news San Jose Mercury News

Wednesday’s Top of the Scroll: New push to expand Bay Area reservoir

Working to expand water supplies for California’s next drought, a coalition of 12 Bay Area water agencies took a significant step Monday toward an $800 million expansion of one of the largest reservoirs in the Bay Area — Los Vaqueros Reservoir in the rolling hills near the Alameda-Contra Costa county line.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Lawsuits challenge ambitious California water tunnels

Gov. Jerry Brown’s ambitious plans to build two massive tunnels, reengineering the hub of California’s water system, would destroy native fish species already on the brink of extinction, lawsuits filed Thursday said.

Aquafornia news San Jose Mercury News

Environmentalists, fishing groups sue over Delta tunnels

Kicking off what are expected to be years of legal battles, a coalition of environmental and fishing groups on Thursday filed the first major lawsuits over California Gov. Jerry Brown’s $17 billion plan to build two massive, 35-mile-long tunnels under the Delta to make it easier to move water from Northern California to the south.

Aquafornia news San Francisco Chronicle

BART’s rising floodwaters wreaked rush-hour havoc

A rush-hour delay caused by flooded tracks at the Powell Street Station in San Francisco — in the middle of summer — points up a BART issue that doesn’t get nearly the attention that overcrowded trains, finicky air-conditioning and the seemingly daily “equipment problems” command: a steady supply of subterranean water.

Aquafornia news McClatchy Washington, D.C., Bureau

Trump’s infrastructure agenda: Approving private projects, including those of his allies

EPA, Interior and Energy all have influence over infrastructure, but possibly the most influential agency is one that many Americans have never heard of — the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. … For years, energy industry CEOs have complained about FERC’s slow pace, partly caused by multiple public hearings and comment periods, so affected landowners can express their concerns.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Friday’s Top of the Scroll: Rep. McClintock’s bill to streamline dam permits passes House

Dam permits would be funneled through a single federal agency in an effort to speed up new water storage projects under a bill that passed the House on Thursday.

Aquafornia news McClatchy Washington, D.C., Bureau

Wednesday’s Top of the Scroll: Bill aims to help California save water for a not-so-rainy day

After years of drought, the state of California is bracing for water. Lots of it. … Congress is trying to help manage such drastic shifts in California’s water levels.

Aquafornia news The San Diego Union-Tribune

Could desalinated water from Mexico flow to San Diego?

With Baja California pushing forward on its plan for a massive desalination plant in Rosarito Beach, a ground-breaking proposal to pipe some of that water to the United States has overcome a key hurdle. The U.S. State Department’s approval of a presidential permit marks a step forward for the Otay Water District and its vision for a cross-border pipeline to import the desalinated water from Mexico.

Aquafornia news McClatchy Washington, D.C., Bureau

Budget cuts threaten forests’ roads, hunting, fishing

The roads to the national forests could get bumpier. Literally. Trails could get messier. Maintenance on bridges, dams and recreation sites could become tougher.

Aquafornia news Chico Enterprise-Record

How farmers, water districts and the federal government worked together to bring Butte Creek salmon back from brink

From hundreds of fish annually to nearly 9,000 per year, Butte Creek salmon are thriving, thanks to a project begun 20 years ago. That project was celebrated Thursday at Gorrill Ranch on the Midway. … Bruce Babbitt, Secretary of the Interior for the Clinton administration, helped bring the players to the negotiating table to get the Butte Creek Salmon Recovery Project, completed in the late 1990s.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Thursday’s Top of the Scroll: Snowbound California roads still getting a major plow job

There may be no more potent reminder of California’s humongous snowfall than the plows still clearing roads that snake across the state’s highest mountains as summer approaches. … The snowpack presented an additional challenge this year because it was heavily saturated with water.

Aquafornia news High Country News

Who pays for water infrastructure?

Water infrastructure, for both drinking and irrigation, is especially in need of improvement in the arid West. Amid a wave of aging reservoirs, treatment plants and pipelines, and a Congress unwilling to pony up funding to fix them, the Bureau of Reclamation is considering private investment as a possible solution. While some municipalities in the U.S. have partnered with private companies on water projects, such deals are almost non-existent on the federal level.

Aquafornia news The Sacramento Bee

Wednesday’s Top of the Scroll: Why years of waiting may be over on Delta tunnels

Love it or hate it, the Delta tunnels project is reaching a decision point.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

State orders in-depth assessments of more than 50 California dams following Oroville crisis

In light of the crisis at Oroville Dam earlier this year, state regulators have begun ordering up-close inspections of aging dams throughout California.

Aquafornia news The Bakersfield Californian

Isabella Lake brimming with water, highlighting dam risks

This weekend the water level in Isabella Lake is expected to reach — and maybe even exceed — the restricted pool allowed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. And that means it might be time for residents who reside below the lake’s troubled dam to review their risks.

Aquafornia news Reno Gazette-Journal

Trump budget would crush crucial weather data program

Regional Climate Centers, a little-known network of weather data gathering and processing centers, face an existential threat in the form of a recommended 82 percent budget cut in [President Donald] Trump’s proposed budget. Centers manage weather information that helps fire managers battle wild land fires, helps farmers decide where and when to plant crops and helps engineers design dams and bridges that can stand up to extremes.

Aquafornia news Monterey Herald

CPUC may order new desalination project hearings considering smaller plant

State Public Utilities Commission officials are seeking input on whether to conduct new hearings on California American Water’s proposed Monterey Peninsula desalination project to address a number of issues, potentially including an updated project demand forecast and desal plant sizing evaluation that could lead to a smaller initial plant that could be more easily expanded as demand grows in the future.

Aquafornia news Redding Record Searchlight

Officials worried about Trinity Dam safety

Concerned Trinity Dam could suffer the same fate as Oroville Dam — which had a near catastrophic failure this past winter — the Trinity County Board of Supervisors on Tuesday agreed to continue to pursue getting an emergency spillway built on the dam.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Trump heads to Ohio to talk infrastructure

He’s [President Donald Trump] expected to press efforts to repair the nation’s aging levees, dams, locks and ports, as well as his larger infrastructure aims.

Aquafornia news Water Deeply

Public support for water investment depends how you ask the question

Many of President Donald Trump’s campaign promises have sparked controversy, but one of his proposals ­– spending $1 trillion to fix the nation’s decrepit infrastructure – has broad, bipartisan support, according to numerous public opinion surveys. Water projects are only expected to be a small part of that potential infrastructure spending, but polling data suggests that the public is willing to pay for such improvements – up to a point.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Monday’s Top of the Scroll: Water agencies push bigger role in tunnel plan

California’s powerful regional water districts are working alongside Gov. Jerry Brown to take on more responsibility for designing, building and arranging financing for a $15.7 billion twin tunnel project that would ship water southward from Northern California as they push to finally close the deal on the controversial plan, two officials working closely on the project told The Associated Press.

Aquafornia news The New York Times

Trump plans to shift infrastructure funding to cities, states and business

President Trump will lay out a vision this coming week for sharply curtailing the federal government’s funding of the nation’s infrastructure and calling upon states, cities and corporations to shoulder most of the cost of rebuilding roads, bridges, railways and waterways.

Aquafornia news McClatchy Washington, D.C., Bureau

Trump pledges to spend federal tax dollars on rural infrastructure

After facing criticism for a budget proposal that hung his rural voters out to dry with huge cuts to crop insurance, Medicaid, rural loan programs and air services, [President Donald] Trump will release details of the infrastructure plan in a speech on Wednesday that White House officials say will stress his commitment to rural communities. 

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Landslide on California highway part of $1 billion in damage

A massive landslide that went into the Pacific Ocean is the latest natural disaster to hit a California community that relies heavily on an iconic coastal highway and tourism to survive, and it adds to a record $1 billion in highway damage from one of the state’s wettest winters in decades.

Aquafornia news McClatchy Washington, D.C., Bureau

Looking for quick, massive infrastructure spending in Trump’s budget?

President Donald Trump made rebuilding the nation’s infrastructure a major job-creating campaign pledge. But while his first big federal budget proposal has $200 billion for that purpose, most of it won’t be available until late 2018 and beyond.

Aquafornia news McClatchy Washington, D.C., Bureau

Trump’s rural voters fighting to keep their land from a growing web of pipelines

Eminent domain is often used by governments to gain right-of-way for projects such as highways or government buildings. But state and federal regulators who authorize pipeline projects also typically grant the private companies that are building them the right to use eminent domain to secure needed right-of-way.

Aquafornia news The Sacramento Bee

Is ‘potential Oroville waiting to happen’ at other spillways?

Federal dam regulators are reevaluating how they conduct dam inspections in the wake of the Oroville Dam spillway crisis, and they’ve ordered the nation’s dam operators to thoroughly inspect their facilities to see “if they have a potential Oroville waiting to happen,” a federal dam inspector said Sunday.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Chao on infrastructure: Trump plan out in weeks

Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao said Monday that the Trump administration’s infrastructure plan will be out in a few weeks and will call for $200 billion in taxpayer money to generate $1 trillion in private investment.

Western Water Excerpt Gary Pitzer Jennifer Bowles

Enhancing California’s Water Supply: The Drive for New Storage
Spring 2017

One of the wettest years in California history that ended a record five-year drought has rejuvenated the call for new storage to be built above and below ground.

In a state that depends on large surface water reservoirs to help store water before moving it hundreds of miles to where it is used, a wet year after a long drought has some people yearning for a place to sock away some of those flood flows for when they are needed.

Aquafornia news Brookings Institution

How historic would a $1 trillion infrastructure program be?

From the very first night of his election win, President Trump was clear about his intention to usher in a new era in American infrastructure. Since assuming office, the president and his cabinet continue to use the figure of $1 trillion over ten years to demonstrate the scale of their vision. By any measure, one trillion dollars is a lot of money. … But just how historic would a $1 trillion federal infrastructure program be?

Aquafornia news KPBS Public Broadcasting, San Diego

State appeals court hears San Diego water dispute

The California Courts of Appeal has 90 days to decide the fate of a water rate dispute between a Los Angeles-based water wholesaler and San Diego County water managers. At issue is the cost of moving water through the Metropolitan Water District’s delivery system.

Aquafornia news San Gabriel Valley Tribune

WRD’s recycled wastewater plant half-way finished, rising from a 5-acre field in Pico Rivera

Robb Whitaker walked the wooden bridge suspended above an underground reservoir four stories deep filled with 3 million gallons of treated sewage water. He liked what he saw during a VIP tour Friday … 

Aquafornia news The Sacramento Bee

Tuesday’s Top of the Scroll: Oroville Dam — With bills rolling in, state borrows heavily

California is borrowing up to $500 million to pay for the crisis at Oroville Dam, although it expects to be reimbursed for its costs. … Kiewit Corp. of Omaha, Neb., has won a $275.4 million contract for the repairs, which are expected to take two years.

Aquafornia news Stockton Record

Delta council gets an earful as advocates speak against tunnels

Delta advocates traveled to Sacramento en masse on Friday to protest revisions to a plan that they believe would favor Gov. Jerry Brown’s twin tunnels.

Aquafornia news Stockton Record

A ‘quick yes’ on Delta tunnels? Advocates concerned over new language

Proposed changes to a plan that is supposed to guide the Delta through the 21st century have advocates on red alert, as they worry that the new language locks in Gov. Jerry Brown’s $15 billion twin tunnels. The revised plan does not explicitly endorse the California Water Fix, as the tunnels proposal is formally known.

Aquafornia news The Desert Sun

Hydropower plant next to Joshua Tree wouldn’t hurt environment, Interior Department says

Federal officials have concluded that infrastructure for a proposed hydropower project — which would tap billions of gallons of groundwater in the California desert, just outside Joshua Tree National Park — wouldn’t be especially harmful to the environment.

Aquafornia news Chico Enterprise-Record

Friday’s Top of the Scroll: Yearly dam inspection bill proposed

State-maintained dams and reservoirs will be inspected every year if a new bill can make it through the California Legislature.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Barbara Boxer will lobby for an environmentally controversial desalination plant in Huntington Beach

A Boston-based water development company is paying former Sen. Barbara Boxer to push for approval of a proposed seawater desalination plant that has been mired for years in environmental controversy. 

Aquafornia news The Sacramento Bee

Wednesday’s Top of the Scroll: Brown administration blocks public review of Oroville Dam records

Gov. Jerry Brown’s administration is using federal security regulations written to thwart terrorism to deny public access to records that experts say could guide repairs to the Oroville Dam and provide insight into what led to the near catastrophic failure of its emergency spillway.

Aquafornia news The Sacramento Bee

Big Los Angeles water agency antes up for a share of Sacramento Valley’s Sites Reservoir

The water agency that supplies drinking water to Los Angeles agreed Tuesday to contribute $1.5 million toward the planning of Sites Reservoir in the Sacramento Valley, giving the agency a toehold in a potentially valuable storage project.

Aquafornia news The Sacramento Bee

Mighty Los Angeles water agency wants share of Sacramento Valley’s Sites Reservoir – and is willing to pay

Southern California’s most powerful water agency is prepared to invest in Sacramento Valley’s proposed Sites Reservoir, a move that could broaden support for the $4.4 billion project but also raise alarms about a south state “water grab.”

Aquafornia news Monterey Herald

Cal Am sticks to 6-month desalination project permitting window

A California American Water official argued the company’s desalination project can secure key permits and approvals within six months of certification of the final project environmental review document and start construction shortly afterward, despite a series of delays involving the draft report and the prospect of seeking a critical permit from the city of Marina.

Aquafornia news McClatchy Washington, D.C., Bureau

Infrastructure won’t be the big item Trump can check off as an early win

President Donald Trump’s infrastructure plan won’t be ready until later this year, delaying one of his signature campaign promises and depriving his administration of a big policy achievement in the first months of his presidency. 

Aquafornia news McClatchy Washington, D.C., Bureau

Trump’s infrastructure plan is caught in a White House turf war

When Donald Trump and Mike Pence met this month to discuss a promised $1 trillion infrastructure plan, the Cabinet Room was filled with half a dozen billionaire executives … One person who wasn’t there? The man who worked for months to line up priority infrastructure projects for the Trump transition team.

Aquafornia news McClatchy Washington, D.C., Bureau

Trump requests — and receives — this infrastructure list from builders union

Among the projects listed by the unions is the $1 billion Huntington Beach Desalination Plant in California. … Also in Southern California, the Cadiz water project aims to tap groundwater from the Mojave Desert to supply roughly 100,000 homes.

Aquafornia news San Jose Mercury News

San Jose flood: A month later, 500 have yet to return home

More than a month after Coyote Creek spilled its banks and flooded surrounding neighborhoods, city leaders Thursday said some 500 families remain unable to return home and pleaded with property owners to help house them.

Aquafornia news Stockton Record

Flood control trumps tunnels

Californians are more likely to favor beefing up the state’s flood control infrastructure than building Gov. Jerry Brown’s Delta tunnels, according to the latest poll from the Public Policy Institute of California.

Aquafornia news Sacramento Bee

When it comes to roads and dams, Brown isn’t always a Trump resister

Among the governor’s priorities, including several with their own revenue streams, are creating an express lane network he says will relieve Bay Area congestion, extending BART to San Jose, raising Folsom Dam to improve flood protection, building a hydroelectric energy storage facility in Riverside County and purifying Los Angeles water now being discharged to the ocean in order to recharge groundwater basins.

Aquafornia news Sacramento Bee

Wednesday’s Top of the Scroll: What this week’s storms mean for California’s flood control system

While a nearly record-breaking rainy season has battered California’s dams and stretched the limits of local levees, the storms that began to hit Sacramento on Tuesday aren’t expected to put much additional strain on the state’s flood-control system.

Aquafornia news Chico Enterprise-Record

Bigger walls, thicker concrete, more rebar: How a 21st-century spillway compares to Oroville’s 1968 structure

In the nearly 50 years since the Oroville Dam was completed, construction methods have changed. Chico State University construction management professor Chris Souder consulted on the Folsom Dam auxiliary spillway project which began construction in 2008 and is on pace to be completed in October.

Aquafornia news Capital Public Radio

California explores state-run flood insurance program (with audio)

California water managers say it may be time to drop federal flood insurance and start a state-run program. It could be a difficult and risky move.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Tuesday’s Top of the Scroll: Mayor calls for state of emergency amid concerns that flooding could damage Los Angeles DWP facilities

[Los Angeles] Mayor Eric Garcetti proclaimed a state of emergency Monday, citing concerns that melting snowpack in the eastern Sierra Nevada could flood homes and highways in the Owens Valley and damage the Los Angeles Aqueduct.

Aquafornia news Sacramento Bee

Trump declares disaster for California because of January storms

President Donald Trump on Thursday declared a major disaster for California because of damage caused by heavy rains that hit the state from Jan. 18 to Jan. 23, making available federal assistance to state and local agencies as well as some nonprofit groups.

Aquafornia news Circle of Blue

Trump proposal to fix U.S. water infrastructure invites large role for private investors

President Donald Trump, fashioning himself the builder-in-chief, promised to invest $US 1 trillion to make America’s potholed highways, unstable bridges, leaky water systems, strained ports, and brittle levees whole again. The pledge is more a slogan at this point. Still, Trump and his advisers are adamant that such a big bet on the nation’s arteries of commerce, health, and safety come with a large role for investor-owned companies and equity firms to form public-private partnerships, or P3s.

Aquafornia news Sacramento Bee

Wednesday’s Top of the Scroll: Just weeks after Oroville Dam crisis, damage found in another key California reservoir

California water officials, still struggling with fixes at Oroville Dam, will have to temporarily shut down the pumping station that delivers water to much of Southern California and Silicon Valley after discovering damage at another key state reservoir.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

California bill aims to make it harder for megaprojects to sidestep state environmental law

Two years ago, the Los Angeles Rams did something unheard of in California development politics: In just six weeks, the team went from unveiling plans for an 80,000-seat stadium to earning final approval from the Inglewood City Council.

Aquafornia news San Diego Union-Tribune

Two countries, one sewage problem: Tijuana and San Diego grapple with renegade flows

Baja California’s governor is preparing to declare a state of emergency in the coming days, hoping to draw financial aid for Tijuana’s strained and underfunded sewage system following a massive spill that sent millions of gallons of untreated wastewater from Tijuana across the border and into San Diego last month. 

Aquafornia news NPR

Engineers say tax increase needed to save failing U.S. infrastructure (with audio)

The nation’s roads, bridges, airports, water and transit systems are in pretty bad shape, according to the civil engineers who plan and design such infrastructure. The new report card from the American Society of Civil Engineers gives the infrastructure of the United States a D-plus.

Aquafornia news San Francisco Chronicle

Governor declares state of emergency for storm-wrenched California

Gov. Jerry Brown on Tuesday declared a state of emergency and requested federal aid for parts of California hard hit by winter storms.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Los Angeles overdue for major earthquake that would ‘impact our ability to be a world-class city,’ research shows

Southern California could be overdue for a major earthquake along the Grapevine north of Los Angeles, according to a sobering new study by the U.S. Geological Survey. The research found earthquakes happen there on average every 100 years.

Aquafornia news Modesto Bee

Modesto begins releasing partially treated wastewater into San Joaquin River

To protect pond levees and its water treatment infrastructure, the city of Modesto began releasing partially treated wastewater into the San Joaquin River on Thursday afternoon. …  Working with the California Department of Water Resources’ dam-safety division, there was a shared concern that increased elevation in treatment ponds, combined with wind and wave action, could erode levees, he [city Utilities Director Larry Parlin] said.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Thursday’s Top of the Scroll: Official — California faces $50 billion price tag for flood control

California faces an estimated $50 billion price tag for roads, dams and other infrastructure threatened by floods such as the one that severely damaged Oroville Dam last month, the state’s natural resources secretary said Wednesday.

Aquafornia news McClatchy Washington, D.C., Bureau

California flood control called a life and death crisis, but federal funding is uncertain

California Natural Resources Secretary John Laird told the U.S. Senate Environment and Public Works Committee on Wednesday that further deterioration of the nation’s aging flood control and water infrastructure systems will put lives at risk.

Aquafornia news Eureka Times-Standard

Klamath River dam removal plan on track as administration shifts

The plan to remove four hydroelectric dams to improve fish passage and water quality on the Klamath River is proceeding on schedule for a 2020 demolition time, according to plan proponents. The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission will ultimately have to approve or deny the plan, and the change in administration in Washington, D.C., has led to three of the five seats on the commission being vacated. 

Aquafornia news New York Times

In California, a move to ease the pressures on aging dams

Until a few weeks ago, the McCormack-Williamson Tract in the California Delta was an island of low-lying farmland, more than two square miles protected from the surrounding rivers and sloughs by earthen levees.

Aquafornia news Monterey Herald

Latest Cal Am desal project delay impact uncertain, sanctuary official says hope is to stay on schedule

A Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary representative said the latest delay involving California American Water’s proposed Monterey Peninsula desalination project — a 30-day extension of the public comment period on the project’s draft combined state and federal environmental review document — could push back finalization of the report by a month.

Aquafornia news McClatchy Washington, D.C., Bureau

Despite Trump’s pledge, governors expect little federal spending on infrastructure

President Trump said again Monday that he was preparing to spend big on infrastructure. But even as he spoke, administration officials and congressional leaders were telling governors to expect little new federal investment in roads, bridges, transit systems, dam repairs and other water works.

Aquafornia news Capital Public Radio

Monday’s Top of the Scroll: After storms, Oroville, Gov. Brown proposes almost $500 million in flood upgrades (with audio)

In response to this year’s storms and the emergency at Oroville Dam, California Governor Jerry Brown wants to expedite a half-billion dollars in funding for flood repairs and upgrades.

Aquafornia news San Jose Mercury News

San Jose mayor: Clear ‘failure’ led to record flooding

A day after rescuers boated hundreds of people to safety during San Jose’s worst flooding in decades, city officials Wednesday let many of the 14,000 evacuated residents return home and blamed the sudden overflow of Coyote Creek on bad information about its capacity.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Wednesday’s Top of the Scroll: Thousands flee, freeway shut in flooding near San Francisco

Rising floodwaters sent at least 14,000 residents fleeing inundated homes in San Jose, California, and forced the shutdown of a major freeway Wednesday.

Aquafornia news Modesto Bee

Turlock Irrigation District hopes to prolong spillway releases; Tuolumne River over flood stage

The Tuolumne River in Modesto, struck by a surge of water from the Don Pedro Reservoir’s spillway, rose above the flood stage Tuesday, though it did not result in major flooding.

Aquafornia news San Francisco Chronicle

Not just Oroville: More Northern California infrastructure that needs fixes

The Oroville Dam crisis reminded many Californians of something we only associate with earthquakes: Our crumbling state infrastructure.

Aquafornia news Sacramento Bee

Continued erosion of Oroville Dam’s main spillway part of ‘normal process,’ state officials say

Oroville Dam’s badly damaged main spillway is still deteriorating from an onslaught of fast-paced water, but state officials insist that it is “stable” as they make repairs.

Aquafornia news Modesto Bee

Don Pedro spillway opens, could nearly triple Tuolumne River flow in next few days

The spillway gates opened at Don Pedro Reservoir at 3 p.m. Monday, and over the next four or more days could nearly triple the flow of the Tuolumne River as it comes through Stanislaus County and Modesto.

Aquafornia news Sacramento Bee

Hillsides are ‘weeping,’ falling on California’s mountain highways

As the rain and snow have fallen this winter, so have California’s hillsides, forcing the closure of major roads through the Sierra Nevada and causing millions of dollars in damage.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Thursday’s Top of the Scroll: Beyond Oroville crisis, record rain strains California’s flood control network

The frantic effort over the last few days to lower water levels at Oroville Dam after the structure’s two spillways became damaged is part of a larger drama playing out as California rapidly shifts from extreme drought to intense deluges. 

Aquafornia news McClatchy Washington, D.C., Bureau

Oroville puts focus on dam spillways – aging and some never tested

When operators of Oroville Dam suddenly ordered evacuations on Sunday, it focused a big spotlight on a crucial piece of California’s flood-control infrastructure – spillways. … Some of these dams are getting upgrades, albeit slowly.

Aquafornia news Riverside Press-Enterprise

Is there an Oroville-style threat looming in Southern California? Experts say no

While massive, damaged Oroville Dam threatens to disgorge floodwaters, you’ve got to ask yourself: Do Southern California dams pose a significant threat to people living below them?

Aquafornia news San Jose Mercury News

Oroville Dam brings California’s $65 billion infrastructure annual price tag into view

Shock over the emergency evacuation downriver from the Oroville Dam has given way to serious questions about how California is coping with its aging infrastructure — which the American Society of Civil Engineers says would cost the state a staggering $65 billion per year to fix and maintain after years of neglect.

Aquafornia news Fresno Bee

Could Oroville Dam crisis happen here? Unlikely, operators of San Joaquin Valley dams say

The scenario that played out at the Northern California dam is unlikely to occur at Friant Dam near Fresno, said Duane Stroup, deputy area manager for the federal Bureau of Reclamation.

Aquafornia news USA Today Network

U.S. dams are aging and many don’t have emergency plans

As the nation’s 84,000 dams continue to age, a growing number of people downstream of these structures are at risk, according to experts and data of the nation’s dams. … California has 1,585 dams, according to the National Inventory of Dams database. Fifty-two percent of those dams are considered a high hazard, the fourth-most of any state.

Aquafornia news San Jose Mercury News

Oroville Dam crisis highlights need to fix Anderson Dam, other California dams

One day after the deterioration of an Oroville Dam spillway forced the evacuation of more than 180,000 people in the Sacramento Valley, a reservoir at the southern end of Santa Clara Valley flirted with an ominous milestone.

Aquafornia news Sacramento Bee

Brown administration puts forward projects for possible Trump plan

The Brown administration has presented a list of 51 road, water, energy and other projects as candidates for any public works package crafted by the Trump White House and Congress.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

California submits a $100-billion wish list of infrastructure projects to Trump for federal funding

With President Trump pledging $1 trillion for infrastructure, California officials on Wednesday took a break from their feud with the new administration to propose a list of $100 billion in projects for possible federal funding to help rebuild the Golden State’s system of crumbling roads and bridges and improve transit and water storage.

Aquafornia news San Francisco Chronicle

Spillway crumbles as California reservoirs max out capacity

California’s recovery from drought has been so remarkably quick that reservoirs on the verge of record lows just a year ago are now too full to handle more rain, prompting dam operators across the state to unleash surpluses of water not seen in years.

Aquafornia news McClatchy Washington, D.C., Bureau

Governors send list of more than 300 infrastructure projects to Trump administration

The nation’s governors will submit a list of more than 300 infrastructure projects to President Donald Trump’s administration this week, aiming to share billions he’s urging for nationwide construction projects.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Storms preview sea-rise damage to California roads, cities

Ocean rise already is worsening the floods and high tides sweeping California this stormy winter, climate experts say, and this month’s damage and deaths highlight that even a state known as a global leader in fighting climate change has yet to tackle some of the hardest work of dealing with it.

Aquafornia news McClatchy’s Kansas City Star and The News Tribune

Trump team compiles infrastructure priority list

President Donald Trump’s team has compiled a list of about 50 infrastructure projects nationwide, totaling at least $137.5 billion, as the new White House tries to determine its investment priorities, according to documents obtained by McClatchy’s Kansas City Star and The News Tribune.

Aquafornia news McClatchy Washington, D.C., Bureau

Democrats pave the way toward spending $1 trillion on roads, ports and other projects

A lot more money could fuel improvements to California’s highways, airports and rail lines under a 10-year, trillion-dollar infrastructure plan proposed by Senate Democrats on Tuesday.

Aquafornia news Orange County Register

Wednesday’s Top of the Scroll: Huntington Beach desalination plant is among Trump priorities, leaked document shows

A document purportedly leaked from the Trump administration indicates that the proposed desalination plant in Huntington Beach is among 50 infrastructure projects nationwide that the president has designated as a priority.

Aquafornia news Sacramento Bee

Sites Reservoir plan gets support from Placer, Roseville

In a boost for the proposed Sites Reservoir northwest of Sacramento, the city of Roseville and the Placer County Water Agency have agreed to invest in the $4.4 billion project.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

A key reform of California’s landmark environmental law hasn’t kept its promises

Overhauling the environmental law, the California Environmental Quality Act, is a perennial issue at the Capitol, and the measure benefiting the Warriors arena was one of the most high-profile CEQA reforms in recent years.

Aquafornia news Eureka Times-Standard

Klamath dam removals heavily supported by community

Close to 100 people showed up to speak for the removal of the four dams on the Klamath River at a public meeting put on by the California State Water Resource Control Board in Arcata on Thursday evening.

Aquafornia news Sacramento Bee

California lawmakers tour proposed Sites Reservoir

Assemblyman James Gallagher, R-Yuba City, is leading a troupe of lawmakers today on a tour of the Sites Reservoir, a $4.4 billion proposed water storage project four decades in the making.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Commentary: With prudent budget crafting, Brown shows again that he’s the adult in the Capitol

It isn’t entirely true that [Gov. Jerry] Brown’s new $179.5-billion budget proposal ignores infrastructure. The state is moving toward helping to finance probable construction of a major reservoir called Sites in the Sacramento Valley. 

Aquafornia news Water Deeply

New California dam proposed to combat climate change concerns

Americans have had one primary reason for building dams over the past century: capturing water for growth, whether on farms or in cities. Now a new dam proposed on California’s Bear River offers another reason: adapting to climate change.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Obama administration aids giant California water project

The outgoing Obama administration on Wednesday tried to nudge forward Gov. Jerry Brown’s proposal to build two giant north-south water tunnels for California.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Should Los Angeles County have a huge desalination plant? A battle looms in the South Bay

On a a picturesque summer afternoon, West Basin Municipal Water District officials chose to woo regulators with a stroll by the beach in El Segundo, stopping to admire an unadulterated strip of California coastline. … A few hours later, environmental advocates held a town hall two miles away in Manhattan Beach. 

Aquafornia news Capital Public Radio

Environmental documents for replumbing California water system released (with audio)

California Governor Jerry Brown’s administration has released a 97,000 page environmental document on a plan to re-engineer the state’s water delivery system. 

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Jerry Brown’s controversial tunnel project moves forward

Gov. Jerry Brown’s plan to build two giant tunnels to send Northern California water southward moved a step closer Thursday to final state and federal decisions, with the state’s release of a 90,000-page environmental review supporting the $15.7 billion project.

Aquafornia news Stockton Record

‘On the brink’ of Delta tunnels

Saying that his Delta tunnels proposal has been subject to “more environmental review than any other project in the history of the world,” Gov. Jerry Brown and his administration on Thursday released 97,000 pages of final reports.

Aquafornia news Sacramento Bee

With environmental review finalized, could construction on the Delta tunnels begin in 2018?

After years of planning, officials have finalized all 97,000 pages of environmental documents to support Gov. Jerry Brown’s controversial plan to build two massive tunnels through the heart of the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta.

Aquafornia news San Francisco Chronicle

Friday’s Top of the Scroll: State releases report on disputed twin tunnels water plan

It takes a while to get to the point, but an 80,000-page environmental opus released Thursday makes the case that Gov. Jerry Brown’s $15.7 billion twin tunnels project is the best way to fix California’s water woes.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Wednesday’s Top of the Scroll: Feds to pour $225 million into water projects around US

The federal government will be pouring nearly a quarter-billion dollars into several dozen projects aimed at tackling the effects of drought in the West and restoring watersheds that provide drinking water to communities around the nation.

Aquafornia news Yuba-Sutter Appeal-Democrat

Sites Reservoir ‘one step closer’ with Prop. 1 regulations

The California Water Commission recently adopted regulations that outline in greater detail the process water storage projects such as Sites Reservoir will have to go through to receive state funding.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Tuesday’s Top of the Scroll: Will Trump live up to his infrastructure promises?

Trump or his campaign also mentioned schools, hospitals, pipelines, water treatment plants and the electrical grid as part of a job-creation strategy that would make the U.S. “second to none.”

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Proposed desalination plant in Huntington Beach will test California’s environmental rules

Poseidon Water hopes to help quench Orange County’s thirst, but first the company’s proposed desalination project must slake a thirst of its own. That’s why Poseidon has long eyed a coastal power plant that has, for more than a half-century, sucked up seawater to cool its massive generators. 

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Commentary: Everyone is at odds over Gov. Brown’s Delta tunnels plan — here’s a compromise that could stop the fighting

When enemies are in face-to-face combat, they’re often blind to an obvious path to potential compromise. That’s certainly true of water warriors, who have been battling over California’s most valuable and limited resource since statehood. Fights don’t get any more ferocious than over water in this state.

Aquafornia news Circle of Blue

U.S. dam safety improves but faces evolving risks

All was quiet at the Fehring house before the flood came. It was before dawn on March 14, 2006. The family was asleep, unaware of trouble upstream. The Ka Loko Dam, strained by six weeks of heavy tropical rain, was coming unhinged.

Aquafornia news McClatchy Washington, D.C., Bureau

Tuesday’s Top of the Scroll: Long-sought flood control projects eased passage of California water bill

Flood control concerns in the Sacramento area and Merced County helped drive a big water bill that won overwhelming congressional approval despite heated conflict over other California provisions.

Aquafornia news San Jose Mercury News

Project to retrofit one of Bay Area’s largest dams doubles in cost, faces long delays

Reflecting problems at other aging reservoirs, a $200 million project to drain and repair one of the Bay Area’s largest dams to reduce the risk of it collapsing in a major earthquake will double in cost and be delayed by at least two more years.

Aquafornia news McClatchy Washington, D.C., Bureau

After years of drama, farmers score a big win in California water battle

The California water bill now ready for the president’s signature dramatically shifts 25 years of federal policy and culminates a long and fractious campaign born in the drought-stricken San Joaquin Valley.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Monday’s Top of the Scroll: A problem ‘too big to ignore’ — how years of congressional wrangling led to a water compromise

Few people expected a California water fight in the final days of a lame-duck Congress, and fewer still expected landmark water legislation to pit the state’s U.S. senators against each other in the last moments of their 24-year partnership.

Aquafornia news Capital Public Radio

Early spending proposals from Senate, Assembly Democrats (with audio)

Senate Democrats introduced a $13 billion package of measures that would provide money for street and bridge repair, urban parks, transit systems, trade corridors, water infrastructure and affordable housing.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

House to clear stopgap spending, water projects measures

Also on deck is separate legislation to authorize water projects that has sparked a major battle between environmentalists and agricultural interests over legislation to allow more of California’s limited water resources to flow to Central Valley farmers hurt by the state’s lengthy drought.

Aquafornia news McClatchy Washington, D.C., Bureau

Wednesday’s Top of the Scroll: White House voices opposition to California water measures added to big bill

The White House on Tuesday voiced doubts about controversial California water legislation that has already caused an unusually public split between the state’s two Democratic senators.

Aquafornia news McClatchy Washington, D.C., Bureau

Tuesday’s Top of the Scroll: Boxer, Feinstein in angry split over new California water bill plan

A controversial California water bill that’s sparked years of fighting has been added to a fast-moving measure, boosting the chance the water measures will pass Congress but sharply dividing the state’s U.S. senators.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Last-minute push for California drought legislation creates friction between Feinstein and Boxer

House Republican leaders and California’s senior senator announced Monday a new attempt to pass legislation that would increase water deliveries to San Joaquin Valley agribusiness and Southern California. 

Aquafornia news San Francisco Chronicle

Boxer slams water bill rider backed by Feinstein

Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., and House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Bakersfield, teamed up Monday to slip a legislative rider into a giant end-of-year water infrastructure bill that would override endangered species protections for native California fish for the purpose of sending water to San Joaquin Valley farmers.

Aquafornia news San Bernardino Sun

Why the Rialto water district is building a different type of perchlorate-eating plant

Having made environmental clean-up history with a specialized plant that breaks apart perchlorate using bacteria, management at West Valley Water District is now focused on creating another type of plant to attack this harmful water pollutant.

Aquafornia news San Bernardino Sun

Stock sale nets Cadiz Inc. $9 million to move forward with controversial groundwater plan

Cadiz Inc. has raised more than $9 million in a public stock offering held Thursday, said Andy Moore, president of B. Riley & Co., of Los Angeles, which underwrote the offering on the NASDAQ Global Market.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Mega-earthquake on San Andreas fault would damage 3 million homes, cost $289 billion in California, study finds

A sobering new report on California’s seismic vulnerabilities said that up to 3.5 million homes could be damaged if an 8.0 earthquake ruptured on the San Andreas fault.

Aquafornia news Desert Sun

Eagle Mountain hydropower gets boost from NextEra

NextEra Energy Resources is working to build a massive hydropower plant just outside Joshua Tree National Park, bringing the weight of one of the country’s biggest renewable energy companies to a controversial project that critics say would harm wildlife and diminish an underground water supply critical to the park.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

California voters reject threat to governor’s megaprojects

California voters narrowly voted to reject a ballot initiative that could have threatened two of Gov. Jerry Brown’s megaprojects, the latest results showed Tuesday.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Voters narrowly reject Proposition 53 and future votes on big infrastructure projects

Proposition 53, an effort that sought to force statewide votes to fund a major water project and the future of high-speed rail, failed in a late count of ballots Tuesday.

Aquafornia news The Sacramento Bee

Wednesday’s Top of the Scroll: Proposition 53 to restrict bonds for Delta tunnels fails

California voters have rejected Proposition 53, a November measure to limit the state’s use of revenue bonds to pay for large public works projects that could have undermined Gov. Jerry Brown’s proposed twin water tunnels under the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta.

Aquafornia news Capitol Weekly

Tuesday’s Top of the Scroll: Delta tunnels — A steady trickle of progress

California Water Fix faces one less obstacle, following voters’ rejection of Proposition 53, which would have required a statewide vote for any state project financed by more than $2 billion in revenue bonds. It’s unclear how a Donald Trump presidency will impact the twin tunnels. 

Aquafornia news The Sacramento Bee

Monday’s Top of the Scroll: Is Sites Reservoir a savior for the Sacramento Valley – or a Delta tunnels project in disguise?

An hour north of Sacramento, in a ghost town tucked into a remote mountain valley, California is poised to build a massive new reservoir – a water project of a size that hasn’t been undertaken since Jerry Brown’s first stint as governor in the 1970s. Sites Reservoir, all $4.4 billion of it, represents an about-face in a state where drought has become the norm and water users are told to scrimp and save.

Aquafornia news Stockton Record

Cortopassi not about to give up on Proposition 53

Stockton native Dino Cortopassi refused to concede on Wednesday, holding onto hope that vote-by-mail and provisional ballots will give his Proposition 53 a comeback win.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Wednesday’s Top of the Scroll: California measure on state mega-projects trailing slightly

A California ballot measure on funding state mega-projects that Gov. Jerry Brown had thrown his time and campaign money into defeating was trailing — but barely — in the vote count early Wednesday.

Aquafornia news Stockton Record

Cortopassi measure behind by slim margin

Proposition 53, the brainchild of Stockton agricultural icon Dean Cortopassi, was trailing early Wednesday morning, the closest of all the propositions on the ballot.

Aquafornia news Politico

Gov. Brown presses hard to stop Proposition 53 as supporter cries foul

Gov. Jerry Brown has been appearing on the air and on the campaign trail all over California to defeat one of the state’s most hotly contested ballot measures — Proposition 53. It would require voter approval on expensive infrastructure projects that are considered linchpins in Brown’s legacy, including high-speed rail and the Delta water tunnels, a plan to divert water around the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta to Southern California.

Aquafornia news San Jose Mercury News

Monday’s Top of the Scroll: Reservoir expansion could store water for millions in Bay Area

Millions of Bay Area residents could get extra drought insurance against water shortages and quality problems from a proposed $800 million expansion of the Los Vaqueros Reservoir that may have up to 10 water suppliers as partners.

Aquafornia news Stockton Record

Cortopassi’s race nears finish line as showdown with Gov. Brown draws big bucks

Under certain circumstances, Proposition 53 would require a public vote on very expensive bond-funded projects — including, potentially, high-speed rail and the Delta tunnels.

Aquafornia news Capital Public Radio

Gov. Jerry Brown slams Prop 53, omits analysis on mega-project measure (with video/audio)

Gov. Jerry Brown is no fan of California’s Proposition 53. The measure would require the state to place a public works project of $2 billion or more up for a statewide vote before using revenue bonds to pay for it.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

This man is bankrolling a California ballot measure to force voter approval on big bonds

[Dean] Cortopassi insists that no particular public works project inspired Proposition 53 but admits he thinks two particular proposals should have a statewide vote if they end up relying on big revenue bonds: California’s plans to build a high-speed train system and the sweeping proposal to build twin underground tunnels to transport water through the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta region.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

California farmer’s measure takes on Jerry Brown’s legacy

Wealthy farmer Dino Cortopassi has a lot in common with Gov. Jerry Brown. Both are in their late 70s. … And both have a lot riding on Proposition 53, which would force state leaders to get voters’ approval before undertaking massive state building projects needing $2 billion or more in revenue bonds.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Governor’s ads pan measure requiring vote on big projects

A nonpartisan state analysis has said [Gov. Jerry] Brown’s proposals to spend $15.7 billion to build two giant tunnels to help haul water across the state and $64 billion on a high-speed rail system are the two projects that would most likely be affected.

Aquafornia news Chico Enterprise-Record

Sites Reservoir has a new website, logo and more than enough investors

Last week, folks who are in the inner circle of the plans for Sites Reservoir held a get-together in Maxwell to show off the group’s new office and new logo. Also new is a website, that talks about all things Sites Reservoir — a construction schedule, facts sheets and a list of interested participants (see sidebar).

Aquafornia news Eureka Times-Standard

Secretary of Interior urges approval for Klamath dams removal

U.S. Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell penned a letter this week to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission urging it to approve a plan to remove four dams from the Klamath River to protect the interests of fish and farmers.

Aquafornia news Circle of Blue

Interior Department supports Klamath Dam removal

Four dams on the Klamath River in California and Oregon are a step closer to being taken down. In an October 17 letter to federal dam regulators, the Department of the Interior signaled its approval of a multi-party agreement that would result in dismantling the Copco No. 1, Copco No. 2, Iron Gate, and J.C. Boyle dams, which stand along a 30-mile stretch of the Klamath.

Aquafornia news San Jose Mercury News

Wednesday’s Top of the Scroll: Jerry Brown, allies spend millions to kill measure that could doom high speed rail, Delta tunnels projects

With less than three weeks until Election Day, Gov. Jerry Brown and his political allies are suddenly pumping money into the campaign to defeat Proposition 53, a previously low-profile measure that could be the death knell of Brown’s high-speed rail and Delta tunnels projects.

Aquafornia news Center for American Progress

Aging dams and clogged rivers: an infrastructure plan for America’s waterways

U.S. infrastructure is in bad shape. … A new report from the American Society of Civil Engineers, or ASCE, quantifies how the United States’ chronic underinvestment in infrastructure—spending only half of what is needed—has created an investment gap that affects the economy, safety, jobs, communities, and health. 

Aquafornia news Capital Public Radio

Proposition 53 aims to give voters say on big projects (with audio)

The measure is about revenue bonds, but its outcome at the polls could throw a roadblock in front of the state’s plans to build a high-speed rail system or its biggest water project in decades. 

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Tuesday’s Top of the Scroll: Prop 53 would give California voters bigger say on mega-projects

A proposition that a prosperous farmer brought to the California ballot would threaten two ambitious water and rail projects that Gov. Jerry Brown is pushing, requiring voters’ OK before launching any state building project requiring $2 billion or more in revenue bonds.

Aquafornia news Water Deeply

Energy storage is saving water utilities money and easing grid demand

A new frontier in the energy-water nexus is being forged in Southern California. Teaming up with Advanced Microgrid Solutions, Irvine Ranch Water District will be using an energy storage system to reduce its costs and help ease demand on the grid during peak hours.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Wednesday’s Top of the Scroll: Deal reached to keep US government running, help Flint

The Flint measure, set for a vote Wednesday as an amendment to a separate water projects bill, would authorize $170 million to help Flint and other cities with water emergencies.

Aquafornia news McClatchy Washington, D.C., Bureau

California projects fill water resources bill

Flood control efforts in California’s Central Valley get a boost in sprawling water legislation that reaches the House floor Tuesday. 

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Monday’s Top of the Scroll: Why it matters — Infrastructure

Politicians generally agree the nation’s infrastructure is in need of improvement. … To hear either candidate talk, a staggering amount of money is going to be spent on infrastructure – if Congress goes along.

Aquafornia news Capital Public Radio

Study: Delta tunnel plan would require federal funding (with audio)

California Governor Jerry Brown’s plan to build two tunnels to carry water across the state is only economically feasible if the federal government pays for nearly a third of it, according to a previously unreleased economic analysis.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

California water tunnels would need US funding, analyst says

Giant tunnels that Gov. Jerry Brown wants to build to haul water across California are economically feasible only if the federal government bears a third of the nearly $16 billion cost because local water districts may not benefit as expected, according to an analysis that the state commissioned last year but never released.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Tuesday’s Top of the Scroll: Senate boosts bill for water projects, $220 million for Flint

The Senate voted to move forward Monday on a $10 billion water projects bill that includes $220 million in emergency funding for Flint, Michigan, and other communities beset by lead-contaminated water.

Aquafornia news The New York Times

With nod to Flint crisis, Senate weighs a $9 billion water infrastructure bill

With senators in a standoff over annual spending bills, the chamber is expected as soon as Wednesday to take up a bipartisan, $9 billion measure that would authorize spending on the nation’s water infrastructure.

Aquafornia news Eureka Times-Standard

Benbow Dam demolition on schedule

The demolition of the Benbow Dam — the second largest such undertaking in state history — is on schedule and is set to be completed by October, according to California State Parks Engineering Geologist Patrick Vaughan.

Aquafornia news Orange County Register

Does California’s environmental protection law impede development? Five things to know about CEQA

In a competing study, a pro-environmental group pushed back at the notion that CEQA is impeding growth and driving up home prices. … Californians have been skirmishing over CEQA reform for over a decade.

Aquapedia background

One Hundred Year Flood

Risk Assessment, Not a Timeline

Contrary to popular belief, “100-Year Flood” does not refer to a flood that happens every century. Rather, the term describes the statistical chance of a flood of a certain magnitude (or greater) taking place once in 100 years. It is also accurate to say a so-called “100-Year Flood” has a 1 percent chance of occurring in a given year, and those living in a 100-year floodplain have, each year, a 1 percent chance of being flooded.

Aquafornia news Water Deeply

Q&A: What you need to know about California’s $17 billion water project

Water, or the lack of it, has emerged as one of the greatest sources of stress for California, its people and its native species. … But state officials have proposed a solution – a massive hydroengineering project dubbed California WaterFix. Its two giant tunnels will divert water from the Sacramento River toward Silicon Valley, Los Angeles and farms in the San Joaquin Valley.

Aquafornia news San Jose Mercury News

Italy and California share earthquake risks, although geology differs

In the Bay Area, more than $22 billion in infrastructure upgrades since Loma Prieta have built a metropolitan area that is far safer and far more resilient than before. Major water pipes are now designed to bend, not break.

Aquafornia news Eureka Times-Standard

Klamath River dam removal plan delayed

A plan to remove four Klamath River dams to improve water quality and habitat for fish and river communities will likely be submitted to the federal government in September, according to plan proponents.

Western Water Excerpt Gary Pitzer Jennifer Bowles

Outdated Dams: When Removal Becomes an Option
Summer 2016

Mired in drought, expectations are high that new storage funded by Prop. 1 will be constructed to help California weather the adverse conditions and keep water flowing to homes and farms.

At the same time, there are some dams in the state eyed for removal because they are obsolete – choked by accumulated sediment, seismically vulnerable and out of compliance with federal regulations that require environmental balance.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Friday’s Top of the Scroll: New questions over California water project

Critics and a state lawmaker say they want more explanations on who’s paying for a proposed $16 billion water project backed by Gov. Jerry Brown, after a leading California water district said Brown’s administration was offering government funding to finish the planning for the two giant water tunnels.

Aquafornia news The Orange County Register

CEQA doesn’t stunt economic growth, study says

The study, sponsored by Oakland-based Rose Foundation for Communities and the Environment, found there’s no evidence that the California Environmental Quality Act, or CEQA, has a retarding effect on the state’s economic prospertity.

Aquafornia news The Sacramento Bee

Thursday’s Top of the Scroll: Legislators approve audit of Gov. Jerry Brown’s water tunnel plan

The political conflict over Gov. Jerry Brown’s high-priority plan to place twin water tunnels beneath the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta moved to a new venue Wednesday.

Aquafornia news Bloomberg BNA

Monday’s Top of the Scroll: Water bill may navigate 2016 congressional rapids

If a Water Resources Development Act of 2016 is passed by Congress this year, it will be accompanied by sighs of relief at seeing the infrastructure legislation successfully get back on a two-year schedule.

Aquafornia news The Sacramento Bee

California unveils environmental blueprint for Delta tunnels

California officials Tuesday released a detailed environmental blueprint for Gov. Jerry Brown’s controversial Delta tunnels project, saying the $15.5 billion plan “minimizes potential effects” on endangered fish species whose populations have dwindled following decades of water pumping.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Wednesday’s Top of the Scroll: Federal, state leaders pitch for California water tunnels

Representatives of California Gov. Jerry Brown and the Obama administration began making their pitch for approval Tuesday to build a pair of massive water tunnels under the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta.

Aquafornia news San Francisco Chronicle

Dissent brews over governor’s $16 billion water project

By the time the Sacramento River winds its more-than-400-mile course from the slopes of Mount Shasta past the state capital, it’s well into its leisurely stride, running slowly by fields of sweet corn, tomatoes and alfalfa. But this lazy stretch of river, just south of Sacramento, is a metaphorical whitewater.

Aquafornia news The Sacramento Bee

Remedy, or boondoggle? Hearings launch on Delta tunnels proposal

Marking the first full-scale public examination of the [California WaterFix] proposal, the hearings before the State Water Resources Control Board are focused on a comparatively narrow issue: whether California’s giant water-delivery projects should be allowed to carve three new intake points in the north Delta to pull water from the Sacramento River and feed into the proposed tunnels.

Aquafornia news KQED

About that $17 billion water project: Delta Tunnels 101

This week, Governor Jerry Brown’s controversial water project is back in the public eye. State officials are launching a marathon series of hearings for the “twin tunnels,” as they’re known, that will ultimately decide the fate of the project.

Aquafornia news The San Diego Union-Tribune

San Diego accelerates water recycling

San Diego is accelerating construction of its landmark water recycling system and making other changes that will save money, benefit the environment and make pipeline construction less disruptive. 

Aquafornia news The Sacramento Bee

Monday’s Top of the Scroll: Will the Delta tunnels get built? Plan enters critical make-or-break phase

Still swirling in controversy, Gov. Jerry Brown’s proposed $15.5 billion re-engineering of the troubled Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta is heading into a critical phase over the next year that could well decide if the project comes to fruition. Crunch time starts Tuesday.

Aquafornia news Redding Record Searchlight

Sites Reservoir likely years down the road

Plans to build the Sites Reservoir have been in the works since 1957, and if it is eventually approved, work on the project probably would not be complete for another 10 to 12 years, according to Jim Watson, the Sites Reservoir Project general manager.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Thursday’s Top of the Scroll: Court ruling could boost cost of California water project

The California Supreme Court is set to issue a ruling Thursday that could add millions of dollars to the cost of the governor’s $15.7 billion plan to build two giant water tunnels in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Sewage spill in Los Angeles grows to 2.4 million gallons, prompting bans on swimming in Seal Beach and Long Beach

A damaged sewage line spilled a total of about 2.4 million gallons of untreated waste into the Los Angeles River and has forced the closure of all beaches in Long Beach and Seal Beach, officials said Tuesday.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Why this is the perfect time to invest in infrastructure, and why it probably won’t happen

Boken water mains, creaking subway systems, tens of thousands of rickety bridges and countless miles of shoddy, traffic-clogged roads. America’s infrastructure is crumbling.

Aquafornia news San Gabriel Valley Tribune

Why Los Angeles County wants to risk an endangered bird to clean Devil’s Gate Dam

The Los Angeles County Flood Control District needs permission from a state environmental agency to destroy an endangered bird and its habitat in order to remove 2.4 million cubic yards of sediment from behind Devil’s Gate Dam.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

The ‘Holy Grail’ for earthquake scientists has been accidentally destroyed

For nearly half a century, thousands trekked to Rose and Prospect streets to behold a slice of sidewalk that, by conventional standards, had no curb appeal.

Aquafornia news The Fresno Bee

Friday’s Top of the Scroll: San Joaquin Valley groups, feds seek funds to build Temperance Flat dam

A coalition of local elected officials, water districts, tribal members and the federal government will gather Friday to launch the application process to help build Temperance Flat Dam and Reservoir project.

Aquafornia news The Desert Sun

$250 million plan to treat drinking water approved

The Coachella Valley Water District has approved a plan to start building treatment plants to remove the potentially hazardous heavy metal chromium-6 from drinking water. … But the district’s managers have also questioned the science behind the regulation and have said they will consider joining a lawsuit to challenge the state’s limit.

Aquafornia news San Jose Mercury News

Ballot measure threatens bullet train, Delta tunnels

Two of Gov. Jerry Brown’s favorite projects — building a high-speed rail system and a pair of massive tunnels under the Delta — face a serious threat if California voters pass a measure heading for the November ballot.

Commands