“The Bay Delta Conservation Plan took a dramatic turn in the
right direction Thursday, acknowledging some of the concerns of
Delta farmers by re-routing the proposed massive tunnel system
to affect a smaller area and stay mostly on public land.
“Is the state thinking about Northern California as twin
tunnels under the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta are considered?
And do people in Northern California have a thing or two they’d
like to tell the state?
“The public will have a chance to ask high-level water
officials about the Bay Delta Conservation Plan during a forum
1-4 p.m. Thursday at the Masonic Family Center in Chico, 1110
“The tiny delta smelt has wielded enormous political clout in
California’s water wars because its health as a species is the
legal measure of the environmental health of the bay-delta, the
lynchpin of the state’s water system. As of last week however,
the sandhill crane has usurped the limelight.”
“Representatives from the Bay Delta Conservation Plan (BDCP) will
be holding office hours in Delta communities starting this week
through late September. The office hours have been introduced as
a one-on-one resource for Delta landowners and the public who
have questions regarding the recently announced alignment changes
or other general questions about the program. These office hours
are not intended as a public meeting or forum.
“When Jerry Brown became governor of California again, three
years ago, this state was on a steep decline, crushed by budget
deficits, deep spending cuts, governmental paralysis, high
unemployment and a collapsing housing market. …
“If state and federal officials hope to salvage BDCP, they need
to come up with solutions that reduce the project’s impact, as
opposed to transferring that impact elsewhere. And while it may
be too late to build any kind of trust with stakeholders in the
Delta and Northern California, there are steps they could take to
reduce the mistrust.”
“Assembly leaders on Thursday annnounced a retooled water bond
proposal to address the state’s long-term water supply needs as
well as protecting critical habitat, including the
Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta.
“The $5-billion bond proposal is a leaner version of the
$11-billion bond measure that lawmakers pulled from
consideration in 2012 …
“The state Senate already has held hearings on the water bond
and is expected to consider its version in the near future.”
“The state is moving the route of a proposed tunnel system in
the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta away from north delta
communities to a land preserve that is an important winter home
for the greater sandhill crane and other migratory birds in the
“The realignment, announced Thursday by the California Natural
Resources Agency, is intended to lessen the project’s effects
on north delta residents who have complained fiercely about the
proposal — in some instances refusing to let state survey crews
on their property.”
From the Association of California Water Agencies (ACWA):
“In an effort to reduce the impact of the project on Delta
residents, state officials [August 15] unveiled a smaller Bay
Delta Conservation Plan (BDCP) that shrinks by 50% the
project’s total permanent footprint and shifts portions of the
project away from some homes and farms.
“The smaller project shortens by five miles the two main water
conveyance tunnels that would run under the Sacramento-San
Joaquin Delta, reducing them from 35 miles to 30 miles.
“The state revamped its twin tunnels plan Thursday, making
changes that will spare Delta residents some of the effects of
construction but will also route the tunnels directly beneath
sensitive sandhill crane wintering grounds.”
“The Nature Conservancy announced today [August 15] its intent
to preserve migratory bird habitat in the Delta in light of the
California Department of Water Resources’ proposed location for
water export tunnels below Staten Island, which is owned by the
“In the updated Bay Delta Conservation Plan, the proposed
tunnels would impact vitally important habitat for wintering
sandhill cranes. These birds are unusually site-faithful, often
using the same location to winter, year after year.
“Like many others, our member agencies are interested in seeing
the Bay Delta Conservation Plan be developed thoughtfully and
with input from all stakeholders. As the parties who will be
ultimately responsible for funding the majority of the BDCP, we
have a significant stake in this project being a workable,
successful solution for the Delta’s water supply and
“California water officials are proposing a dramatic redesign of
two massive water diversion tunnels planned for the
Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta, a concession to Delta residents who
have complained the project would upend their lives.”
“A recent series of reports have detailed fracking in the
Pacific Ocean, prompting California lawmakers to disseminate
letters asking the U.S. Department of the Interior, U.S.
Environmental Protection Agency and California Coastal
Commission to investigate.
“The state Coastal Commission responds today, with deputy
director Alison Dettmer discussing offshore fracking during a
commission meeting in Santa Cruz.