Report urges Metropolitan Water District to abandon Newsom’s $16-billion delta tunnel plan – LA Times 5/10/23
In a report released this week, the California Water Impact Network said the Delta tunnel (Delta Conveyance Project) may seem like a viable alternative but has three major flaws: “an exorbitant price tag, environmental restrictions on operations and the impacts of climate change on deliveries.”
Max Gomberg, a former employee of the State Water Resources Control Board resigned last year, now works as a consultant for the California Water Impact Network. Gomberg says that the Delta tunnel project’s reliability is uncertain in regards to climate change and pumping restrictions from environmental regulations. Gomberg also provides alternatives for the Metropolitan Water District (MWD) instead of continuing with investing into the Delta tunnel project, he suggests focusing on local infrastructure projects such as capturing stormwater, cleaning up contaminated groundwater, and recycling wastewater.
Adán Ortega Jr., chair of the Metropolitan Water District Board, states: “I think we’ve spent way too much in the Delta in general. Imagine what we could have built down here with [the money spent on Tunnel planning and litigation].”
“It’s not doing the Delta any good, because it prevents the long-term planning that needs to take place there. I want to see some analysis of climate change in the Delta,” Ortega added.