“Fresnans will soon pay more for water — a lot more.
“The City Council on Thursday night approved a new rate
structure that will help fund a long-needed $410 million
upgrade to Fresno’s water system but will probably cause
homeowners’ monthly bills to double.”
“Despite strong opposition from several longtime area ranchers,
Contra Costa’s largest water district agreed last week to move
forward with new grazing lease agreements for several pieces of
land bordering Contra Costa, Alameda and San Joaquin counties.
“Contra Costa Water District acquired 6,000 acres of rangeland
for conservation in 2010 in those counties as part of its deal
to expand the Los Vaqueros Reservoir.
“The folks at Climate Central made another splash last week,
releasing lists of cities that they argue could end up at least
50 percent underwater if carbon reductions are not achieved by
certain ‘locked-in’ dates.
“Yes, Stockton’s on the list. In fact, it has the earliest
‘locked-in’ date in the entire state – the year 2051.
“A Tracy dairy operation has been ordered to pay a $685,000
penalty for discharging manure waste into groundwater and
failing to clean it up.
“The Central Valley Regional Water Quality Control Board said
Thursday it fined Henry Tosta Dairy for the violations, but the
fine it imposed was far less than the $1.1 million that it had
“He’s [Scot Moody] gone from the boss of a $3 million-a-year
community service district in the Mother Lode to the general
manager of the $30 million-a-year Stockton East Water District,
which provides irrigation water for east-side farmers and treats
and delivers some of the water coming from Stockton taps.
“Federal biologists have confirmed that ancient sturgeon not
only exist in the San Joaquin River, but also spawn there,
despite less than ideal conditions. …
“In his well-known book, ‘Inland Fishes of California,’ expert
Peter Moyle wrote the verified record for a white sturgeon is
1,300 pounds, one-third the weight of an average sedan. They
have been known to live well into their 80s and beyond.”
“A state law passed just after Hurricane Katrina requires
communities to change their general plans and zoning guidelines
to reflect risk from a 200-year flood. …
“The problem for Stockton is that local governments, under the
law, are prohibited from giving an OK to developments in flood
hazard zones. Unfortunately, almost all of Stockton is regarded
in just such a zone.”
“From the bathtub rings around our reservoirs, to the salty
Delta lapping up against our levees, there is ample evidence
that in the span of just two years California’s water supply
has shifted from wealth to want.
“The state has not formally declared a drought, but water
managers are using words like ‘dire’ to describe the situation
– particularly if next winter disappoints.”
“Mountain residents and the Fresno County sheriff are squaring
off against a federal wildlife agency over frogs and toads — an
Endangered Species Act fight that spreads like wildfire along
the Sierra Nevada. …
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service in April proposed protection
under the Endangered Species Act after years of pressure from
environmentalists. … But worried people in counties from
Lassen to Tulare asked for a delay so they could make more
in-depth comments. Fish and Wildlife obliged, extending the
comment period from June to Nov.
“Four-plus years ago, when Stanislaus County leaders asked
their Agricultural Advisory Committee to draft a proposed
ordinance to restrict export (sales) of groundwater outside the
county, there was fierce opposition from some irrigation
district leaders, who basically said, You’re not in the water
business; we are. Go away.
“Today, one Modesto Irrigation District director, Larry Byrd,
wants the county to do something immediately about the
overdraft of groundwater on the east side of the county …