The sustainable management of
groundwater is an important issue across California, but water
users along the coast also must deal with seawater intrusion when
their basins become imbalanced. Learn how one water district is
working to quantify the problem and address it on our Central Coast Tour Nov. 6-7.
To survive the next drought and meet
the looming demands of the state’s groundwater sustainability
law, California is going to have to put more water back in the
ground. But as other Western states have found, recharging
overpumped aquifers is no easy task.
A UC Berkeley symposium in which water managers and others
from across the West assessed the opportunities and challenges of
improving troubled aquifers through managed aquifer recharge is
the focus of our latest article in Western
Water, our flagship publication.
A diverse roster of top
policymakers and water experts are on the
agenda for the Foundation’s 36th annual Water
Summit. The conference, Water Year 2020: A Year
of Reckoning, will feature compelling conversations
reflecting on upcoming regulatory deadlines and efforts to
improve water management and policy in the face of natural
Tickets for the Water Summit are sold out, but by joining the waitlist we can
let you know when spaces open via cancellations.
Our last tour of 2019 is all new and
will journey through a region grappling with limited local water
supplies. Solutions to issues surrounding urban, agricultural and
environmental water use on the scenic Central Coast involve
potential lessons for all of California.
Get a firsthand look at a completed
dam removal project near Monterey on our Central Coast Tour Nov. 6-7.
The removal of San Clemente Dam on the Carmel River in 2015 was
the largest project of its kind in California, and lessons
learned from it are being applied to other projects across the
state and the nation.
Although safety concerns from sediment buildup and seismic
activity were the primary drivers for the dam’s removal, it also
opened up miles of spawning habitat for salmon and steelhead on
the Carmel River that had been blocked for nearly 100 years.
California experienced one of the
most deadly and destructive wildfire years on record in 2018,
with several major fires occurring in the wildland-urban
interface (WUI). These areas, where communities are in close
proximity to undeveloped land at high risk of wildfire, have felt
devastating effects of these disasters, including direct impacts
to water infrastructure and supplies.
One panel at our 2019 Water
Summit Oct. 30 in Sacramento will feature speakers
from water agencies who came face-to-face with two major fires:
The Camp Fire that destroyed most of the town of Paradise in
Northern California, and the Woolsey Fire in the Southern
California coastal mountains. They’ll talk about their
experiences and what lessons they learned.
Applications are now available for
our yearlong Water
One of our most popular programs, the Water Leaders class is
aimed at providing a deeper understanding of California
water issues and building leadership skills with class members
attending water tours, studying a water-related topic in-depth
and working with a mentor.
A multiphased project to remove
a levee along the Sacramento River north of Sacramento and
restore hundreds of acres of floodplains to reconnect to the
river is now underway.
Participants on our Northern California
Tour Oct. 2-4 will visit the site of the
restoration project near Hamilton City led by River Partners. The
project also involves the construction of a setback levee
to provide more reliable flood protection to the community
and agricultural areas along the river.
The Foundation’s final tour of 2019
is all new and will highlight urban, agricultural and
environmental water use on California’s scenic Central Coast,
traveling from the technology hub of Silicon Valley’s San Jose to
the coastal enclave of Monterey and to the wine country of Paso
Participants on our Nov. 6-7 Central Coast Tour will learn
about the challenges of a region struggling to be sustainable
with limited local supplies and the efforts to address them.
Participants on our Northern California
Tour Oct. 2-4 will get updates on changes planned or
completed at key dams that anchor California’s two major water
delivery projects — Shasta Dam and Oroville Dam.
The tour will visit Shasta Dam, keystone of the federal Central Valley Project,
for a firsthand look at plans to raise the height of the
structure and increase storage capacity, and hear from some who
oppose the expansion. A tour of the Shasta Powerplant and a
houseboat outing on Shasta Lake, already California’s largest
reservoir, are also part of the tour.
With a key deadline for the
Sustainable Groundwater Management Act in January, one of the
featured panels at our Oct.
Summit will focus on how regions around California
are crafting groundwater sustainability plans and working on
innovative ways to fill aquifers.
The theme for this year’s Water Summit, “Water Year 2020: A Year
of Reckoning,” reflects critical upcoming events in California
water, including the imminent Jan. 31, 2020 deadline for
groundwater sustainability plans (GSPs) in high- and
The deadliest and most destructive
wildfire in California history had a severe impact on the water
system in the town of Paradise. Participants on our Oct. 2-4
Tour will hear from Kevin Phillips, general manager of
Paradise Irrigation District, on the scope of the damages, the
obstacles to recovery and the future of the water district.
The Camp Fire destroyed 90 percent of the structures in Paradise,
and 90 percent of the irrigation district’s ratepayer base. The
fire did not destroy the irrigation district’s water storage or
treatment facilities, but it did melt plastic pipes, releasing
contaminants into parts of the system and prompting do-not-drink
advisories to water customers.
Dates are now set for two key
Foundation events to kick off 2020 — our popular Water 101
Workshop, scheduled for Feb. 20 at McGeorge School of Law in
Sacramento, and our Lower Colorado River Tour, which will run
from March 11-13.
In addition, applications will be available by the first week of
October for our 2020 class of Water Leaders, our competitive
yearlong program for early to mid-career up-and-coming water
professionals. To learn more about the program, check out our
Water Leaders program
Here’s a golden deal to celebrate
today’s anniversary of California’s 1850 admission into
the Union: Get 50 percent off the paperback Water & the
Shaping of California, a treasure trove of
gorgeous color photos, water literature and famous sayings about
This beautifully designed oversize book discusses the engineering
feats, political decisions and popular opinion that reshaped the
nature – flood and drought – and society – gold, grain and
growth – that led to the water projects that created the
California we know today.
The book includes a foreword by the late Kevin Starr, the Golden
State’s premier historian.
California Natural Resources
Secretary Wade Crowfoot, a key player in carrying out Gov. Gavin
Newsom’s water priorities, will give the keynote address at the
2019 Water Summit on Oct. 30 in
Now in its 36th year, the Water Summit features a
variety of policymakers, experts and stakeholders discussing
important topics in water across California and the West. This
year’s theme is “Water Year 2020: A Year of Reckoning.” Click
here to register before prices go up on Sept. 26th. Foundation
contributors of $100 or more should choose the discounted price.
Or you can become a contributor and
get the discount right away.
Executive Director Jennifer Bowles
stressed the importance of impartiality — a value she has
embraced throughout her journalism career — in explaining
the Water Education Foundation’s role as a source of water news
and information in California and the West during a podcast
interview published last week.
Talk+Water podcast by the Texas + Water newsletter, Bowles talked about
serving as executive editor of the Foundation’s flagship
publication, Western Water, whose
most recent article explored how private capital is speeding
up forest restoration in the Sierra Nevada that could benefit
water quality and supplies.
Get an up-close look at some of
California’s key water reservoirs and learn about farming
operations, salmon habitat restoration, flood management and
wetlands on our Northern California Water Tour Oct. 2-4.
Each year, participants on the tour enjoy three days exploring
the Sacramento Valley during the temperate fall. Join us as we
travel through a scenic landscape along the Sacramento and
Feather rivers to learn about issues associated with storing
and delivering the state’s water supply.
World Water Week runs through
Friday, Aug. 30, and to mark the occasion the Foundation is
offering a special 30 percent discount on our beautiful
poster-size maps, layperson’s guides and other water
Use the promo code WORLDWATER19 when checking
out of our online store.
Our new Edge of Drought Tour Aug.
27-29 highlights the connection between the Santa Barbara
region’s distinctive hydrology and the lurking threat of drought
from persistent water scarcity with an up-close look at water
projects and programs across the southern Central
Coast. With the next California drought around the corner,
the variety of efforts underway to enhance the area’s limited
local water resources have potential applications across the