Register today for the return of our
in-person fall tours offering
participants a firsthand look at issues such as drought in
California’s two largest watersheds that have implications for
the entire state.
California Tourexplores the Sacramento
River and its tributaries to learn about key reservoirs and
infrastructure that conveys vital water resources across
California. Our San Joaquin River
Restoration Tourreturns this year to dive
into the story of bringing back the river’s chinook salmon
population while balancing water supply needs.
Mark your calendars now for our full schedule of fall programs,
including a reunion of our Water Leaders graduates to celebrate
the 25th anniversary of the program as well as the in-person
return of our 38th annual Water Summit.
Our fall programming also includes tours exploring California’s
two largest rivers, the Sacramento and the San Joaquin, to learn
more about infrastructure, the impacts on farms and habitat from
a third year of drought and salmon restoration efforts.
Check out the details below to learn more about these fall
Gov. Gavin Newsom has signed a sweeping plastic-reduction
measure that aims to dramatically shrink the amount of
disposable packaging and food ware that Californians use in
their daily lives. The bill, SB54, is the result of a
breakthrough legislative deal between some environmentalists,
business groups and waste haulers, a last-minute compromise
that led proponents to withdraw an anti-plastic waste
initiative from the November ballot. … “California won’t
tolerate plastic waste that’s filling our waterways and making
it harder to breathe,” Newsom said in a statement. “We’re
holding polluters responsible and cutting plastics at the
The seven states that rely on the Colorado River must come up
with a plan to cut 2 to 4 million acre-feet of water use. By
mid-August. And if they don’t, the federal Bureau of
Reclamation will act for them. It’s a massive amount of water
to find in a short amount of time. And there are more questions
than answers about what this entails. But let’s walk
through what we know. Could the Colorado River dry
up? Maybe. Depending on how you define “dry up.”
For the last 25 years that Scott Martin has been practicing
water law in Utah, the concept of appointing water judges or
creating a water court has been a topic of conversation many
times. … But as the finite resource becomes more scarce, the
conversation of appointing water judges in Utah has turned into
a reality. A new rule passed by the Utah Judicial Council that
goes into effect on Nov. 1 will establish at least three
district court water judges throughout the state. The district
court judges will volunteer to be a water judge and then be
approved by the Judicial Council.
Looking to avoid power blackouts, California may turn to the
one energy source it’s otherwise desperate to get rid of:
fossil fuels. A sweeping energy proposal Gov. Gavin Newsom
signed Thursday puts the state in the business of buying power
to ensure there’s enough to go around during heat waves that
strain the grid. But some critics say the method of getting
there is at odds with the state’s broader climate goals,
because it paves the way for the state to tap aging gas-fired
power plants and add backup generators fueled by diesel….
Newsom’s solution centers on creating a “strategic reliability
reserve” run by the Department of Water Resources.
As part of the historic Colorado River Delta, the Salton Sea
regularly filled and dried for thousands of years due to its
elevation of 237 feet below sea level.
The most recent version of the Salton Sea was formed in 1905 when
the Colorado River broke
through a series of dikes and flooded the seabed for two years,
creating California’s largest inland body of water. The
Salton Sea, which is saltier than the Pacific Ocean, includes 130
miles of shoreline and is larger than Lake Tahoe.
Drought—an extended period of
limited or no precipitation—is a fact of life in California and
the West, with water resources following boom-and-bust patterns.
During California’s 2012–2016 drought, much of the state
experienced severe drought conditions: significantly less
precipitation and snowpack, reduced streamflow and higher
temperatures. Those same conditions reappeared early in 2021
prompting Gov. Gavin Newsom in May to declare drought emergencies
in watersheds across 41 counties in California.