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Summertime Action Alert: We Need Your Help!

Well the heat is on and everyone seems ready for a wet and wonderful summer. We hope you enjoy all the recreational activities the Delta has to offer! So you don’t lose your edge during the dog days, we have a few simple summer vacation homework assignments for you. Photos! If you are out in the Delta this summer, boating, fishing, or just enjoying the view, be on the lookout for algal blooms in the water. Restore the Delta needs your photos of Delta algal blooms. We are collecting photos for a project that will help bring attention to this issue and generate action to fix the problem. Please send your photos along with a date and location to [email protected]  [...]

Delta Flows: Learning from the Bullet Train Mess

Happy Hot Monday! We hope everyone is staying hydrated and cool during our first heat wave of the season.As we scanned the news today this story jumped out as something for Delta activists to think about.This LA Times story is truly a heartbreaking cautionary tale about the impacts of large infrastructure projects on farming communities. High-speed rail route took land from farmers. The money they’re owed hasn’t arrived – LA Times 6/10/19 “One problem was the agency’s decision to issue construction contracts with only 15% of the rail design completed, a so-called design-build approach. With only preliminary designs of highway bridges, rail structures and utility relocations, it was difficult to know how much land would be needed and the degree to which [...]

Do CA DWR “Hearings” Actually Listen?

by Tim Stroshane, Policy Analyst, Restore the Delta The concrete-walled room was intimate and windowless, with chairs arranged into several rows facing toward a screen onto which a slide projector beamed DWR’s PowerPoint presentation. Placed in each corner was an easel with large displays for different facets of the State Water Project system. Each easel had a DWR staff person standing with it. To the side was a table where a court reporter sat with a laptop into which she would pour words stated at the event. There would be no questions or statements made in front of the assembled public this agency nominally serves.A “public meeting” held by DWR on May 13, 2019 once more illustrates that DWR officials [...]

CA DWR Rescinds California Water Fix Bond Resolutions

For Immediate Release: 5/9/19 Contact:Bob Wright, Friends of the River, (916) 442-3155 x207 Barbara Barrigan-Parrilla, Restore the Delta, (209) 479-2053 Sacramento – The California Department of Water Resources has formally rescinded the Bond Resolutions authorizing issuance of almost $9 billion of bonds to pay for the start of construction of the Delta Twin Tunnels. The resolution was adopted on May 7, 2019. DWR’s funding for any new one-tunnel proposal must start from scratch. Attorneys representing conservation, agriculture, and fishing groups today praised this action by DWR. Statement by Bob Wright, Senior Counsel, Friends of the River There is great news now reflecting a complete restart of Department of Water Resources (DWR) planning for Delta water export issues including conveyance. On [...]

Land Purchases: MWD’s New Water Grab?

Fascinating and scary article we wanted to share with you today.   According to excellent reporting by Ry Rivard the Los Angeles-based “Renewable Resources Group” has helped sell 33,000 acres of land to California’s most powerful water agency, the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California.  A Little-Known Company Is Quietly Making Massive Water Deals –  Voice of San Diego 5/7/19 “By spring 2016, Metropolitan had agreed to pay $175 million for 20,000 acres of farmland south of Sacramento. Again, Metropolitan paid a premium for the land – and again, Renewable was reaping the rewards. A 5-year-old appraisal showed the land was worth about half what Metropolitan paid.” Here is why we think this long read is so important… Ry Rivard’s [...]

Delta Flows: A Day For California History Books. But What’s Next?

When scholars of California history and California water review the decisions our state leaders made to plan for the impacts from climate change, they will look back at May 2, 2019 as the pivotal date in our state’s water planning processes.  As the Department of Water Resources, under Governor Newsom’s direction, rescinded permits for California WaterFix from the State Water Resources Control Board, a decision was made to begin new water planning processes with the intention to make California water resilient in the decades ahead, while providing better protections for the Delta and Delta communities. While the vast majority of our followers recognize that the decision to end the twin tunnels is a huge victory for the Delta and the [...]

DWR Rescinds Delta Twin Tunnel Permit Application; Begins New Process for a Single Tunnel

For Immediate Release: 5/2/19 Contact:  Barbara Barrigan-Parrilla, Restore the Delta, 209-479-2053, [email protected] STOCKTON, CA – Today, the California Department of Water Resources withdrew its permit application for California WaterFix (the twin tunnels project) from consideration before the State Water Resources Control Board. They also submitted notice to begin the process for planning a single tunnel conveyance project. These notices fill in some details about an executive order the governor signed on April 29, 2019 directing three state agencies to develop a “comprehensive strategy to build a climate-resilient water system and ensure healthy waterways through the 21st century.”
 The Water Resilience Portfolio order directs the secretaries of the California Natural Resources Agency, the California Environmental Protection Agency and the California Department of Food [...]

Gov. Newsom Introduces California Water Resilience Portfolio – Restore the Delta Response

For Immediate Release: 4/29/2019 Contact:  Barbara Barrigan-Parrilla, Restore the Delta, 209-479-2053, [email protected] Brian Smith, 415-320-9384G STOCKTON, CA – Governor Gavin Newsom signed an executive order late Monday, April 29, directing three state agencies to develop a “comprehensive strategy to build a climate-resilient water system and ensure healthy waterways through the 21st century.” The Water Resilience Portfolio order directs the secretaries of the California Natural Resources Agency, the California Environmental Protection Agency and the California Department of Food and Agriculture to identify and assess a suite of complementary actions to ensure safe and resilient water supplies, flood protection and healthy waterways for the state’s communities, economy and environment. The portfolio will integrate and build on programs, policies and investments already in place to [...]

ICYMI April 25, 2019 California Water News

Dead fish wash up near $6.3 million passageway designed to protect them. Why didn’t it work? Sacramento Bee 4/25/19 “The optics of the dead fish rotting next to the new facility raises fresh questions about whether habitat restoration programs championed by former Gov. Jerry Brown’s administration, through his controversial Delta tunnels project, will be completed in time to make a difference. The programs are designed to prevent the extinction of numerous species of fish whose plummeting numbers in recent years have lead to wide-ranging cuts to California’s water supply. “The erosion and design problem at the Fremont Weir facility comes after the Department of Water Resources has faced more than two years of withering criticism for allowing problems to fester at [...]

CAL EPA Environmental Justice Event in Stockton 4/29 Secretary Blumenfeld and Stockton Mayor Tubbs to speak

Contact: Daniel Lopez, Office of Mayor Michael Tubbs, 209-292-3516 Kevin Olp, Cal EPA, 916-324-9682 Barbara Barrigan-Parrilla, Restore the Delta, 209-479-2053 CAL EPA Environmental Justice Event in Stockton 4/29Secretary Blumenfeld and Stockton Mayor Tubbs to speak WHAT: Planting the Seeds: Stockton’s Environmental TransformationA celebration of the ongoing partnership between the California Environmental Protection Agency (CalEPA), Stockton’s vibrant community health and social justice organizations, and the City, to work towards achieving environmental justice in Stockton by sharing and disseminating information regarding environmental concerns and challenges, and by investigating and addressing enforcement and compliance issues affecting Stockton residents. WHO: Michael Tubbs, Mayor of Stockton Jared Blumenfeld, Secretary, California Environmental Protection Agency Yana Garcia, Assistant Secretary of Environmental Justice and Tribal Affairs (CalEPA) Joaquin Esquivel, Chair of the [...]