The Imperial Irrigation District, which holds some of the oldest and largest rights to Colorado River water, on Monday tentatively agreed to a one-time contribution of up to 250,000 acre-feet of surplus water if needed to stave off shortages in Lake Mead. But they tacked on several last-minute conditions aimed at easing farmers’ fears of permanently losing water, and to force federal and state officials to guarantee funding for clean-up of the Salton Sea.
In a good sign for California’s water supply, the Sierra Nevada has been blanketed by heavy snow thanks to a series of recent storms. The snowpack measured 106% of average, according to the state’s snow survey taken late last week. That’s more than double the 47% of average measured on the same day last year.
More than three months after the Carr Fire was contained, the burned out hillsides the deadly blaze left behind continue to pose a threat to water quality in western Shasta County. The barren fire-scarred hillsides could cause drinking water quality problems for communities that rely on water from Whiskeytown Lake, according to a report written for the Shasta County Public Works Department.
After months of hauling water from Corning, recent rains have eased Paskenta’s water crisis. “We have water in the creek,” said Paskenta Community Services District Secretary Janet Zornig. “It’s starting to get a little low but we’ve been running the plant.”
With drought entering a second decade and reservoirs continuing to shrink, seven Southwestern U.S. states that depend on the overtaxed Colorado River for crop irrigation and drinking water had been expected to ink a crucial share-the-pain contingency plan by the end of 2018. They’re not going to make it — at least not in time for upcoming meetings in Las Vegas involving representatives from Arizona, California, Colorado, Nevada, New Mexico, Utah, Wyoming and the U.S. government, officials say.
Updated estimates related to costs, reliability, timeliness and other factors show Soquel Creek Water District may be best-served by building a recycled water plant, authorities said this week. However, cautioned district General Manager Ron Duncan, the water agency would be best served in not pitting its several potential water supply projects against each other.
Not a rapid growth in energy prices. Not unemployment. Not rising public debt. Business leaders in some of the world’s most water-stressed countries say that water availability and pollution are the biggest risks to their operations. … Business executives and investors are gaining the same awareness as national security experts, generals, and diplomats: that the lack of reliable, clean water, made worse by climate change, unsettles societies, politics, and economies.
Santa Monica is three years behind schedule for water independence due to delays in obtaining permits for some of the proposed plans. The city is using about 20 percent less imported water than it did in 2011, when City Council set a goal of achieving water self-sufficiency by 2020. At a recent Council meeting, staff said changes to state laws have also presented a challenge.
California Gov. Jerry Brown (D) on Friday backed a bid by Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) and House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) to extend provisions in a 2016 bill to shuttle more water from the Golden State’s wet north to farms and cities in the arid south.
Despite the last few storms that brought the North State much needed rain, this water year has been relatively dry, and those conditions are reflected in the Department of Water Resources’ initial State Water Project allocations.
The Butte County Sheriff’s office on Sunday said residents of neighborhoods in nearby Magalia can return to the area at noon on Sunday and public access would resume 24 hours later. … But the communities may have very limited services, and authorities urged residents to ensure they have food, water and fuel for their vehicles before returning.
California’s most senior Democrat and most powerful Republican in Washington are teaming up to extend a federal law designed to deliver more Northern California water south, despite the objections of some of the state’s environmentalists. While controversial, the language in their proposal could help settle the contentious negotiations currently underway in Sacramento on Delta water flows — the lifeblood of California agriculture as well as endangered salmon and smelt.
A leading earthquake expert says San Diego should consider accelerating replacement of aging water pipes and completing a comprehensive inventory of local buildings, especially structures made of unreinforced brick. … She [Dr. Lucy Jones] said the water system is typically a city’s most vulnerable point in an earthquake because shifting ground cracks pipes, potentially depriving a recovering community of its crucial water supply.
The tiny, remote dot in northeastern San Diego County known as Borrego Springs and its several thousand residents face a daunting task: To survive, they need to ensure they use the same amount of water as the town has in its sole aquifer, which provides declining supplies.
After a three-year battle to keep their underground job site from flooding, the construction crew at Lake Mead is ready to let the water win. … The move will mark the latest milestone for the Southern Nevada Water Authority’s low-lake-level pumping station, a $650 million safety net for a community that draws 90 percent of its drinking water from Lake Mead.
A group of powerful Imperial Valley farmers and their irrigation district need to work together for the benefit of the region, according to Superior Court Judge L. Brooks Anderholt. He warned a fight between the two sides over rights to Colorado River water and the need to address a prolonged drought across the Southwest could spur action by Congress, or end up in the U.S. Supreme Court.
A friend complaining about her skyrocketing water bill. Parents worried about bathing their children in water known to be carcinogenic. Witnessing young salmon once again flourish on seasonal rice fields. These are just a few of the water stories that colleagues and I [Ann Hayden], representing a range of sectors within the Central Valley and coastal region of California, shared in a new report that provides recommendations for incoming Gov. Gavin Newsom to create a healthier and more resilient water future for the state.
Gov.-elect Gavin Newsom has the opportunity to chart his own course on climate change by addressing one of the state’s greatest challenges: the resilience of our water supplies. Newsom didn’t waste any time diving in. On Election Day, he co-authored a letter with Gov. Jerry Brown asking the state water board to delay voting on a plan to increase Delta water flows for salmon so that stakeholders could negotiate voluntary agreements.