Development & Population

Overview

Development & Population

Aquafornia news CALmatters

Commentary: Legislature must block desert water grab

California policymakers are the last line of defense against the federal government’s attempt to facilitate a water heist from beneath our Mojave Desert. Cadiz Inc. seeks to extract 50,000 acre-feet of water from an underground basin in the Mojave each year and pump it to urban users near the coast.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Experts: Hail damage is worse, but climate role uncertain

Hailstorms inflict billions of dollars in damage yearly in North America alone, and the cost will rise as the growing population builds more homes, offices and factories, climate and weather experts said Tuesday. The role of climate change in hailstorms is harder to assess, the experts said at a conference at the National Center for Atmospheric Research in Boulder, Colorado.

Aquafornia news The New York Times

Fierce and unpredictable: How wildfires became infernos

At the Missoula Fire Sciences Laboratory, Dr. [Mark] Finney and other researchers are recreating and studying whirls, as well as the paths that out-of-control blazes cut through millions of acres of forests and grassland in the West. The scientists are racing to develop a deeper understanding of the combined effects of a warmer climate, massive tree die-offs that feed the wildfires, and developments encroaching into the wilderness.

Aquafornia news San Francisco Chronicle

In California’s new wildfire reality, facing the need for periodic fires to clear fuel

When a wall of flames raced up the hillside at Avalanche Creek on a recent afternoon, firefighters in Yosemite National Park had to act quickly. The giant Ferguson Fire was headed toward the south rim of Yosemite Valley, and if crews didn’t stop it here, the fire would open up on the edge of the park’s most beloved spot.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

At UC Santa Cruz, a housing shortage pits the need for beds against a much-loved meadow

The road to UC Santa Cruz winds past old lime kilns, assorted barns and storage sheds. Then a vast meadow opens. Its wild prairie grasses, baked golden on toasty summer days, add a vivid layer of color to the vista of redwood forests beyond and bright blue sky above.

Aquafornia news Cronkite News

Decades-long court battle over water rights impedes economic investment in rural Arizona

The “growth” industry has fueled Arizona’s economy – growth in houses, offices, and places to have fun. Consistent growth is possible, in part, because of prudent water management in the more populated areas of the state. But outside the population hubs, some water rights still are tied up in court, making it hard for developers to plan.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Commentary: Lessons from the La Tuna fire

Despite the evidence, many policymakers still mistakenly believe that wildland fires behave unpredictably, and that their effect on homes is similarly unpredictable. That leads to inaction. More troubling, some politicians are now attempting to use the loss of homes and lives in recent wildland fires as an excuse to reduce environmental protections and increase commercial logging in our national forests under the guise of “thinning.”

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Arizona sides with developer in river water use dispute

A proposed housing development that opponents say will dry out one of the Southwest’s only free-flowing rivers can take shape after the Arizona Supreme Court ruled Thursday that the developer has proved it has sufficient long-term water supply.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Coastal officials vote to tear down sea wall protecting Laguna Beach mansion

The California Coastal Commission voted unanimously Thursday to order a Laguna Beach couple to pay $1 million in fines and tear down a sea wall that officials say protects a single mansion from erosion at the expense of the public beach in front.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Arizona Supreme Court to rule on lawsuit over water rights

The Arizona Supreme Court is scheduled to rule on a lawsuit involving water usage for a proposed 7,000-home development near one of the Southwest’s only free-flowing rivers.

Aquafornia news Orange County Register

How Coastal Commission could force a $25 million beachfront home to be bulldozed

After previous owners were told by the California Coastal Commission that they couldn’t rebuild their Laguna Beach house in its existing beachfront footprint, new owners performed an extensive remodel — without a commission permit — that they say increased the home’s value by $11 million. … Commission staff is recommending removal of a retroactively approved seawall …

Aquafornia news NPR

Why today’s wildfires are hotter and more destructive

In the West, wildfires are burning hotter and more intensely than ever because of climate change, and the situation is made worse by the explosion of development in fire-prone areas and past firefighting decisions. Here are three reasons the destructive fires you’re seeing all over the news right now are unlikely to abate anytime soon.

Aquafornia news Water Deeply

California groundwater law means big changes above ground, too

California’s new groundwater management law is not a sports car. It moves more like a wagon train. The rules do not require critically overdrafted aquifers to achieve “sustainability” until 2040. But 22 years from now, once they finally get there, lives will be transformed.

Aquafornia news Fresno Bee

Editorial: Madera County Supervisors Premature in Approving Gunner Ranch

From The Fresno Bee:

With California — particularly its farm economy — suffering from the effects of a historic drought, it is imperative that our leaders act responsibly to protect water resources.

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Aquafornia news

Commentary: Building Again in Natomas is Too Risky

From The Sacramento Bee, in a commentary by Bruce Maiman:

Growth is returning to Natomas, but a troubling question is going to be ignored or dismissed by those with the power to address it: Is building in a floodplain a good idea?

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Aquafornia news Manteca Bulletin

Manteca Share of Levee Study: $863K

From the Manteca Bulletin:

If 200-year flood protection isn’t secured — or at least a financial and implementation plan in place by July 1, 2016 — development of the Great Wolf Resort and family entertainment zone, The Trails at Manteca, and other residential projects in southwest Manteca won’t take place.

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Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

National Park Service Calls Development Plans a Threat to Grand Canyon

From the Los Angeles Times:

Looking eastward from the canyon’s popular South Rim, visitors could soon see a hive of construction as workers build restaurants, hotels and shops on a distant mesa on the Navajo Indian reservation. … That project and a second, unrelated development proposed for just south of the canyon have set off alarms at the National Park Service, which sees them as the most serious threat the park has faced in its 95-year history.

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Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

California Acts to Speed Up Quake Fault Mapping

From the Los Angeles Times:

With Gov. Jerry Brown’s approval, California officials are reviving an ambitous plan to study dangerous earthquake faults and create zoning maps that could restrict development.

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Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Developers Seek End to Federal Protections for California Gnatcatcher

From the Los Angeles Times:

Developers citing new scientific evidence are pressing to end federal protections for the California gnatcatcher, whose status as a threatened species has barred development in many areas of prime Southern California coastal real estate for two decades.

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Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Developers Seek End to Federal Protections for California Gnatcatcher

From the Los Angeles Times:

Developers citing new scientific evidence are pressing to end federal protections for the California gnatcatcher, whose status as a threatened species has barred development in many areas of prime Southern California coastal real estate for two decades.

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