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ICYMI — Lawsuit Settlement for California Sportfishing Protection Alliance, California Water Network, and AquaAlliance Is A Big Win For the Delta

Landmark Lawsuit Settlement Between Environmentalists and State Water Boards Strengthens Delta Protections – 7/20/2020Restore the Delta sends a heartfelt congratulations to California Sportfishing Protection Alliance, California Water Network, and AquaAlliance for securing a landmark settlement agreement with the California State Water Resources Control Board to uphold the common law Public Trust Doctrine and other legal protections for imperiled fish species in the Sacramento River and San Francisco Bay/Sacramento – San Joaquin Delta Estuary.  This is an important victory for the estuary.Click here to read their press release.Harmful Algal Blooms at Stockton’s Waterfront – 7/22/2020Click to watch and listen to media coverage of  the Harmful Algal Bloom outbreak in the Delta surrounding Stockton.Interior may shift projects to former Bernhardt client – 7/23/2020More smash and water grab action by [...]

Harmful Algal Blooms at Stockton’s Waterfront: Cyanobacteria at Dangerous Levels 

For Immediate Release: 7/22/20 Contact: Barbara Barrigan-Parrilla, 209-479-2053, [email protected], CA – Last week, Restore the Delta published photos of Harmful Algal Blooms along Stockton’s downtown waterfront, area sloughs, and other river confluences into the San Francisco Bay-Delta estuary and reported our finding to the Central Valley Regional Water Quality Control Board for investigation.  Yesterday, the Central Valley Regional Water Quality Control Board (CVRWQCB) confirmed, through water quality testing for both water and scum samples, the presence of microcystins above the recreational health trigger thresholds.  The report from the Water Boards linked below documents the unhealthy bacteria levels found in water and scum samples on July 14, 2021, and the health trigger measurement levels used to evaluate public health risk. Dr. Meredith Howard, Environmental Program [...]

Delta Flows: Harmful Algal Blooms in the Delta are a Pandemic

by Barbara Barrigan-Parrilla In 2007, we produced our first Delta Flows newsletter and began our advocacy for increased flows to improve water quality for the San Francisco Bay-Delta estuary.  While tunnel plans come and go (and come back again), we still have not been able to persuade the state that freshwater flows for the estuary aren’t just what is needed for restoring an idealized natural world, protecting certain types of fish, or saving Delta farms – freshwater flows are life. In 2019, Restore the Delta, as a leader of the Stockton Environmental Justice Initiative, made clear to California officials the real threat to public health and the health of the estuary itself as a result of proliferating harmful algal blooms (HABs). [...]

ICYMI: Watch our webinar series “Reframing a Region: Communities of Color in the California Delta Parts I & II”

This webinar series addresses popular narratives of the California Delta that present the region as a white space. Using an array of primary sources, a diverse panel of experts will contest this view, illustrating how communities of color were fundamental to the development of the Delta region.  You can watch part one here. This covers history through 1907.You can watch part two here. This covers history 1907 and beyond, Documents for this series:Phillip Merlo’s PresentationPhillip Merlo’s BibliographyMalissa Tayaba’s Presentation

Delta Flows: California water during national crisis (Part 2)

by Barbara Barrigan-Parrilla, Executive Director Last week, the number one box office hit was in the USA was “Jurassic Park” because drive-ins were the only theaters open during the pandemic. Jurassic Park contains some great science quotes that can be applied to efforts by the State Water Contractors, the Design Construction Authority, the Department of Water Resources and the Newsom Administration around the pursuit of a Delta tunnel and overall California water management.  “Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could, they didn’t stop to think if they should.” The question the Department of Water Resources (DWR) and the Design Construction Authority have been busy trying to answer in the affirmative is whether scientists (really engineers) could figure [...]

In Memory of Jay Sorensen

In MemoriamCaptain “Jolly” Jay SorensenSeptember 28, 1937 – June 22, 2020  Tribute by Restore the Delta Board Secretary, Roger Mammon  The Delta mourns the loss of one of its strongest advocates.  Jay Sorensen of Stockton, California passed away peacefully in his sleep.  After successfully beating throat cancer 5 years ago he valiantly lived with complications from the radiation therapy that left him unable to take nourishment by mouth. A lifelong Stockton resident, he was an avid fisherman and guided thousands of people fishing on the San Joaquin River including celebrities, sports figures, and even politicians.  It is estimated he spent 10,000 days fishing over his 50 years as a guide.  The nickname “Jolly” came from his penchant for humor and joke telling. He was the first [...]

Join us on July 2nd for our next webinar “Reframing a Region: Communities of Color in the California Delta – Part 2”

DATE: Thursday July 2nd, 2020TIME: 11 AMThis webinar will address popular narratives of the California Delta that present the region as a white space. Using an array of primary sources, a panel will contest this view, illustrating how communities of color were fundamental to the development of the Delta region. This is the second part.Register here.You can watch the first part of the webinar here.Our panel includes:Phillip Merlo, San Joaquin County HistorianPhillip Merlo is a professional historian and educator who serves as the Director of Education at the San Joaquin County Historical Society & Museum. A Stockton native with roots in the delta, Phillip has degrees in history and geography from UC Berkeley. Prior to his tenure at the museum, he served as a [...]

Join us for “Reframing a Region: Communities of Color in the California Delta – Part 2”

DATE: Thursday July 2nd, 2020 TIME: 11 AM This webinar will address popular narratives of the California Delta that present the region as a white space. Using an array of primary sources, a panel will contest this view, illustrating how communities of color were fundamental to the development of the Delta region.  Register here. Our panel includes: Phillip Merlo, San Joaquin County Historian Phillip Merlo is a professional historian and educator who serves as the Director of Education at the San Joaquin County Historical Society & Museum. A Stockton native with roots in the delta, Phillip has degrees in history and geography from UC Berkeley. Prior to his tenure at the museum, he served as a social studies teacher at Franklin High School. [...]

ICYMI: Guest Commentary: The Delta Tunnel is not a Social Justice Project 

ICYMI: Guest Commentary: The Delta Tunnel is not a Social Justice Project Maven’s Notebook 6/26/20 In his CalMatters piece on June 20, 2020, Gary Kremen, vice-chair of the Delta Conveyance Finance Authority wraps Governor Gavin Newsom’s proposed Delta tunnel project in a strategy of virtue signaling — talking the talk without walking the walk – and without knowing the Delta.“You cannot know the extent of water in a pond you have never been to.”– Swahili proverb (first of three)We grew up at different times but attended the same high school, Ravenswood High in then-unincorporated East Palo Alto. We learned of and lived with the systemic injustices foisted on East Palo Alto by its wealthy, too often disdainful neighbor Palo Alto, and its occupying force,  the [...]

ICYMI: Delta Tunnel Director Earns More than Governor

As state slashes budget, director for proposed Delta tunnel earns twice as much as the governor – Sacramento News & Review 6/24/20While the COVID-19 pandemic has blown a $54 billion hole in California’s budget—threatening education and safety programs and forcing 234,000 state employees to take unpaid furloughs—the state’s spending on a proposed massive tunnel project in the Delta hasn’t slowed. Documents obtained by SN&R reveal that the director of the joint powers authority leading that effort, under the supervision and current financing of the state Department of Water Resources, is getting paid $47,000 every month—twice as much as Gov. Gavin Newsom and significantly more than President Trump.DWR says that the money to pay Kathryn Mallon, executive director of the Delta Conveyance Design [...]