The 24-page guide explores the history of the Central Valley
Project, from its roots as a state water project that stalled
amid the Great Depression to its development as a federal project
that stretches from Shasta Dam in far Northern California to
Bakersfield in the southern San Joaquin Valley.
Newly released numbers from the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation
project a high chance of shortages on the Colorado River within
the next two years. The numbers show Lake Mead is
likely to drop below 1075 feet in elevation later this
year. That triggers a “Tier 1” shortage under the rules of the
Drought Contingency Plan. Arizona takes the brunt of the
shortage, losing more than five hundred thousand acre-feet of
water, or about a third of the Central Arizona Project’s
supply. The canal brings water to Tucson and Phoenix, but the
cuts will largely affect farmers.
The successful Bakersfield children’s book series “Indy, Oh
Indy” has launched a Kickstarter campaign to fund its sixth
upcoming book, titled “The Mighty Kern River.” The book was
inspired by a larger effort from the grassroots group Bring
Back the Kern to raise awareness about Bakersfield’s mostly dry
river and efforts to revive a more regular flow of water
It’s a growing threat that sneaks in with the tide. Sea levels
here in the Bay Area are expected to rise by a foot or more
over the next several decades, potentially overwhelming levees
and seawalls around the Bay. But now an environmental group
says one of the most powerful weapons we have to fight back, is
being literally, thrown away. … [T]ons of sediment that are
dredged out of the Bay every year and barged out sea, or dumped
in deep water … could be the perfect solution to bolster the
wetlands that surround the Bay.
The worsening drought has canceled a large water sale to West
Side farmers by the Oakdale and South San Joaquin irrigation
districts. They announced Wednesday that their own
customers will need the water, which had been declared surplus
in early March. A revised forecast of Stanislaus River runoff
scuttled the sale, which could have brought up to $25 million
to the sellers.
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 most recent drought, from 2012–2016, much of
the state experienced severe drought conditions: significantly
less precipitation and snowpack, reduced streamflow and higher