“Faced with historically low water levels on the American River
and a long-range forecast providing little relief, the
Sacramento City Council on Tuesday voted unanimously to enact
severe water rationing on residents and businesses, while also
boosting enforcement efforts against water scofflaws. …
“Sacramento joined other municipalities around the region
enacting tough water-saving measures.”
“Top city officials are recommending that the [Sacramento] City
Council approve a plan next week requiring a 20 percent to 30
percent reduction in water use by residents, businesses and city
“Early this morning, the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation was
expected to cut water releases from Folsom Dam into the river
from 1,100 cubic feet per second to 800 cfs. This will drop the
river’s elevation within its bed by about 6 inches.
“It won’t stop there. Each night this week until Friday, dam
releases will be cut in stages until flows reach 500 cfs.
“Folsom Lake’s historically low water level has exposed remnants
of the Gold Rush mining town of Mormon Island, the last to be
razed in anticipation of the flooding of the American River
Canyon upon completion of Folsom Dam. The town was buried by
water in 1955.”
“December is usually not the time of year to discuss water
rationing. But this holiday month has been so dry that
mandatory water conservation orders are beginning to sweep
across the Sacramento region. …
“In some cases, these will be the strictest water rationing
orders the region has seen since the drought of 1976-77, one of
the worst in history.”
“There’s still no rain in the Sacramento area forecast in the
days ahead and the dry conditions have triggered water rationing
measures. Yesterday, the Sacramento County Water Agency urged
people to voluntarily reduce water use by 20 percent.
“Unseasonably warm weather has made this a Christmas for the
record books, pushing the temperature at Sacramento Executive
Airport to an unprecedented 64 degrees, according to the National
“Most Californians know their state parks as a place to camp,
walk on the beach or stare with jaws gaping into a canopy of
giant redwoods. Fewer know the state parks system also guards one
of the largest troves of historical artifacts in the nation.
Soon, Californians will be able to walk through that remarkable
assembly of artifacts for the first time.
From The Sacramento Bee, in a commentary by Darrell Fong:
“Gov. Jerry Brown and major water interests from Southern
California and the Central Valley are trying to sell a proposal
to the residents of Sacramento and other Delta communities to
allow the construction of twin underground tunnels costing $25
billion to siphon water from the Sacramento River and deliver it
to farms and cities to the south.
From The Sacramento Bee, in California Sketches by Stephanie
“Nothing symbolizes ‘made in California’ more than the iconic
salmon. Chinook salmon, born in inland watersheds, migrate to the
sea to mature and return to where they were born, to reproduce.
But their access to natural spawning grounds in the foothills and
mountains is prevented by dams on most of California’s waterways.
The salmon’s fight for survival on the American River exemplifies
the consequences of man engineering nature.