FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Monday, August 19, 2013
Contact: Steve Hopcraft 916/457-5546; [email protected]; Twitter: @shopcraft
Barbara Barrigan-Parrilla 209/479-2053 [email protected];
In case you missed it…
The Sacramento Bee
Editorial: Delta tunnel project still stuck with unacceptable baggage
Published Sunday, Aug. 18, 2013
Kudos are in order for Mark Cowin, the director of the California Department of Water Resources. For months, Cowin has taken seriously the concerns of farmers and landowners whose lives and businesses could be upended by a gargantuan water tunnel project the state wants to build through the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta.
Last week, DWR officials announced changes that would reduce the impact of the project. The alignment of the tunnels would be shifted away from communities such as Courtland and Walnut Grove. A forebay would be scaled down in size and be relocated away from the Stone Lakes National Wildlife Refuge. DWR also proposes fewer “tunnel muck” areas on private lands, with their locations moved to state-owned land near Interstate 5.
All that is good, and Cowin and other state officials deserve credit for listening to affected residents, and attempting to respond. That said, DWR’s new plan doesn’t fundamentally change the dynamics of the Bay Delta Conservation Plan. State and federal officials, pressured by powerful water contractors south of the Delta, are still charging forward with a “my-way-or-the-highway” approach to water planning, saying they will build a tunnel without a vote of lawmakers and over the objections of most of the Delta and Northern California.
They still haven’t provided guarantees to north state water users that their water supplies and ecosystems won’t be harmed by tunnel diversions. And as The Sacramento Bee’s Matt Weiser reported Thursday, in attempting to solve one problem, the new DWR tunnel alignment would create others.
To read the full editorial, click here: http://www.sacbee.com/2013/08/18/5657882/editorialdelta-tunnel-project.html