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ICYMI – Santa Barbara Rejects Single Tunnel Plan, Newsom’s Confusing Water Policy (October 28, 2019)

Santa Barbara Water Agencies Say No to State Water Tunnel Project – Noozhawk Santa Barbara 10/25/19
“Local water agencies aren’t buying into the new version of the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta “twin tunnels” project, and Santa Barbara County members of the State Water Project voted Thursday to opt out entirely…“The Department of Water Resources hasn’t released a complete project description or estimated costs, but wants State Water Project members to opt in or out now, according to Central Coast Water Authority Executive Director Ray Stokes.”

Barbara Barrigan-Parrilla, executive director of Restore the Delta comments,
“Restore the Delta was the first group to call for a full cost-benefit analysis of the twin tunnels, including an analysis of the value of freshwater to the San Francisco Bay-Delta estuary.  Our call for this full analysis does not change with state plans for moving forward with a single tunnel. Exporting water districts deserve to know what the project will cost and how much benefit it will bring or not bring to their agencies, including the true costs of mitigation for Delta construction and degraded water quality. Otherwise, exporting water districts cannot make accurate, honest, and transparent evaluations as to whether investing in a tunnel makes sense for their ratepayers.
“PG&E chose to pay bonuses to shareholders before rebuilding infrastructure — all rubber-stamped by regulators.  Smart water districts will not rubber-stamp the tunnels. As we see today in California due diligence by those overseeing projects and asset management is of the greatest importance as we face extreme climate change conditions.”

Editorial: California Gov. Newsom must defend delta – San Francisco Chronicle 10/25/19
“Nothing about water supplies is simple or easily solved. But bowing to one side and going along with a divisive Trump decision won’t help. The governor needs to stand firm and halt a runaway plan that worsens the environment and prospects for a balanced solution to California’s water woes.”

Delta Flows: The Political Science of Bernhardt’s Biological Opinions – Restore the Delta blog 10/26/19
“If the Newsom administration does not fight to manage the Delta for improved water quality, our grandchildren, like the children of the southern San Joaquin Valley, will be left to fight for clean drinking water. That’s what a future with deteriorating water conditions in the Delta will become. The promise of a healthy natural world will be lost for good. California will become a land of water haves and have-nots.

“That’s what California is being reduced to by the Trump administration’s faux biological opinions for the Delta. We pray the Newsom administration will not succumb to the backstage Feinstein-Bernhardt-Westlands alliance for commodified water, managed by the few. We will continue to work for the restoration of our waterway commons in the Delta and for all of Californians.”