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Announcement

Virtually Explore the Delta; Remembering Bob Johnson; Grab a Spot While They Last for Upcoming Tours & Events
Seize a Coveted Sponsorship for Our Tours & Events

Check Out Our Growing Delta Digital Library 

We’ve expanded our digital Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta library. You can now virtually visit the Delta by watching a series of short videos that show its multiple dimensions: a hub of California’s water supply, an agricultural cornucopia, a water playground and a haven for fish and other wildlife.

You can check out the video series here. You can also explore our interactive story map to the Delta.

Announcement

Learn About California Water Basics & Beyond at Water 101 Workshop April 5
Jump on the Bus for an Optional Groundwater Tour April 4; Seize a Coveted Sponsor Spot!

Water management at the local level in California increasingly requires a firm grasp of issues across the state, so take advantage of this once-a-year opportunity to attend our Water 101 Workshop on April 5 and gain a deeper understanding of the history, hydrology and law behind California’s most precious natural resource.

Top policy and legal experts will be presenting at our annual workshop held at McGeorge School of Law in Sacramento, with an optional groundwater tour the day before.

Water News You Need to Know

Aquafornia news San Francisco Chronicle

Thursday Top of the Scroll: California reservoir managers could sharply limit water to farms and cities this year

Even after all the rain and snow in California this month, state and federal water managers announced Wednesday that they’re planning to limit deliveries from the state’s biggest reservoirs this year because seasonal precipitation has lagged. Their plans, however, don’t fully account for the recent storms. The State Water Project, with Lake Oroville as its centerpiece, expects to ship 15% of the water that was requested by the mostly urban water agencies it supplies, including many in the Bay Area. The estimate is up from 10% in December but still low. The federally run Central Valley Project, which counts Shasta Lake among the many reservoirs it operates primarily for agriculture, expects to send 15% of the water requested by most irrigation agencies in the San Joaquin Valley and 75% to most in the Sacramento Valley.

Related articles: 

Aquafornia news Colorado Sun

Colorado snowpack to 96% of normal after February snowstorms

After this winter’s faltering start, the snowstorms in January and February boosted Colorado’s snowpack from around 10% to nearly 100% of normal accumulation for this time of year. … The Colorado River Basin, which provides water to 40 million people across the West, receives much of its water supply from the mountain snowpack in Colorado and other Upper Basin states. The snowpack conditions generally range between 75% and 105% of normal across the Upper Basin, which includes Colorado, New Mexico, Utah and Wyoming. Modeling of the Lower Colorado River Basin — Arizona, California and Nevada — indicates that snowpack conditions are much higher than usual, ranging from 120% to 250% of normal.

Aquafornia news E&E News

California water regulator declines implementing river diversion limits

The State Water Resources Control Board handed environmental and fishing groups a surprise loss Friday when it denied their petition for permanent instream flow restrictions on the drought-stricken Shasta River in Northern California. The denial came as a surprise because both the water agency and Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom have said they want to prioritize making some emergency drought rules for rivers permanent this year in order to better insulate the state from recurring drought. The board already extended the emergency limits it put on the Scott and Shasta rivers during the drought in a December decision, but the temporary rules run out in February 2025.

Related article: 

Aquafornia news Water Education Foundation

Announcement: Agenda posted for Water 101 Workshop in April; optional groundwater tour nearly full

Don’t miss a once-a-year opportunity to attend our Water 101 Workshop on April 5 to gain a deeper understanding of California’s most precious natural resource. One of our most popular events, the daylong workshop at McGeorge School of Law in Sacramento offers anyone new to California water issues or newly elected to a water district board — and really anyone who wants a refresher — a chance to gain a solid statewide grounding on California’s water resources. Some of state’s leading policy and legal experts are on the agenda for the workshop that details the historical, legal and political facets of water management in the state. 

Online Water Encyclopedia

Aquapedia background Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta Map

Wetlands

Sacramento National Wildlife RefugeWetlands are among the world’s most important and hardest-working ecosystems, rivaling rainforests and coral reefs in productivity. 

They produce high levels of oxygen, filter water pollutants, sequester carbon, reduce flooding and erosion and recharge groundwater.

Bay-Delta Tour participants viewing the Bay Model

Bay Model

Operated by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the Bay Model is a giant hydraulic replica of San Francisco Bay and the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta. It is housed in a converted World II-era warehouse in Sausalito near San Francisco.

Hundreds of gallons of water are pumped through the three-dimensional, 1.5-acre model to simulate a tidal ebb and flow lasting 14 minutes.

Aquapedia background Colorado River Basin Map

Salton Sea

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.

Lake Oroville shows the effects of drought in 2014.

Drought

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.