After its impressive show of backbone in adopting the report on flow criteria, the SWRCB reverted to its usual equivocation when it was time to talk to the BDCP Steering Committee on July 29.
According to the DSC staff report, the Water Board representative told the Steering Committee that they would weigh other factors, such as economic and social considerations, in making an enforceable ruling.
All they were doing in this was case was answering the legislature’s question about “the minimum flows necessary to protect resources considered to be in the public trust.” (The answer, you may recall, was 75 percent of natural unimpeded flows.)
Restore the Delta reminds the Water Board that we will never have a healthy economy in California if we don’t have a healthy ecosystem. The economy will find a use for as much water as the Water Board is willing to allocate. We’ve tried putting economic and social considerations ahead of the needs of the ecosystem, and look where it has gotten us.
Resource availability is a natural constraint on growth. We ignore that truth at our peril.