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Join us on 10/21 for a virtual Dine and Learn event: Carbon Sequestration in the Delta!

Join Restore the Delta’s first virtual session in our Dine & Learn series on October 21, 2021 at 6:00 PM.    Research is showing that, in order to avoid disruptive climate change, we need to capture carbon dioxide from large sources and from the atmosphere and store it thousands of feet underground.    Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory scientists, Briana Schmidt and George Peridas have collectively spent decades studying the technologies involved and will be providing an overview of how they work, the science behind them, their risks and benefits, and how Delta residents and communities can evaluate proposed projects.Speakers include Tom Zuckerman (Delta farmer and water expert), Matt Holmes (Environmental Justice Director, Little Manila Rising), Briana Schmidt (Scientist, Lawrence Livermore National Lab), and George [...]

Restore the Delta’s Resignation from the Delta Conveyance Design and Construction Authority Stakeholder Engagement Committee

When our good faith efforts produce no results and are met with resistance, Restore the Delta will shift and move into a new direction to ensure that the San Francisco Bay-Delta estuary is protected and restored for future generations. We have, therefore, resigned from the Stakeholder Engagement Committee, for the Delta Conveyance Design and Construction Authority.  We simply could not move the Department of Water Resources to work on true problem solving for the estuary.  Read our letter to learn more.

ICYMI 9/20/21: California Water Policy and Environmental Justice

Opinion: Governor must integrate justice into state water policy  – San Jose Mercury/East Bay Times 9/18/21 Water allocations failing to give tribal communities and communities of color an equal voice “Northern California tribes fear coming years could see the unnecessary extinction of salmon runs central to our religion and culture. For the Winnemem Wintu Tribe, one of those runs is the winter run Chinook salmon, which is being wiped out this year by high Sacramento River water temperatures. This is not caused by drought alone, but by excessive water deliveries to “senior water rights” holders that have drained Lake Shasta’s cold water. “In the Delta, pollution and inadequate water flows have led to an explosion of harmful algal blooms. This summer, the Delta is [...]

DELTA FLOWS 9/19/21 The Window Dressing of Environmental Justice in Delta Tunnel Planning

– Tim Stroshane, Policy Analyst, Restore the Delta If the California Department of Water Resources says it, it must be official: “Most of the Delta qualifies as an environmental justice community,” said DWR environmental program manager Carrie Buckman at last Thursday evening’s Delta Conveyance Project Environmental Justice webinar. It was a welcome statement of a fact that Restore the Delta documented five years ago.  The event was sponsored by the DWR and was the last of four such webinars this summer. More than 100 people attended mid-program, and there were still about 75 by the start of the Q&A portion of the agenda ninety minutes in. It was clear from the webinar that DWR intended to limit the scope of environmental justice [...]

Update on CEQA and Budget Trailers

Restore the Delta has been tracking what is happening in Sacramento with the aid of several partner organizations. Language and bills have evolved. Here is what we have learned. Thanks to leadership in both the State Assembly and Senate, they have curtailed the Newsom Administration’s efforts to loosen up CEQA requirements for Delta tunnel construction. We are grateful to the California Legislature for putting up these guard rails. The CEQA provision in the trailer bill could apply to the adoption of regulations by state agencies to large-scale habitat restoration projects. The new adopted language makes clear that the CEQA exemption “does not apply to a project that includes construction activities, except for construction activities solely related to habitat restoration.”  In addition, the trailer [...]

ACTION ALERT UPDATE: No Delta Tunnel in the CEQA Exemption Bill!

As we stated in our Sunday newsletter, the Newsom Administration is trying to move forward with disingenuous Delta watershed restoration bills that replace water with habitat (instead of doing both).  This is part of their full court press to create “voluntary agreements” to fill the Delta tunnel.  We need you to call your legislator and Governor Newsom’s office to express opposition to the following two bills: In Section 23 of SB 155 published Sunday is current wording re  CEQA exemption for habitat projects:https://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov/faces/billTextClient.xhtml?bill_id=202120220SB155In section 10 of SB 170 published today is funding for habitat projects:https://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov/faces/billTextClient.xhtml?bill_id=202120220SB170 What they are proposing completely disregards the needs of Delta communities for healthy water quality and quantity. Furthermore, as explained Sunday, it will allow a political appointee of any and [...]

Delta Flows: Monitoring for the Bay-Delta Estuary on Multiple Fronts

Before we continue with the blog below, we want to thank our contributors who have helped us keep this vitally important work for the estuary going. This weekend is the 15th anniversary and start of the 16th year of work by Restore the Delta! If you have been busy this summer and unable to contribute to Our Living Delta, it’s not too late. Click her to make a contribution.  As you read this blog, you will see that we are busier than ever working to protect the estuary that we all love.CEQA Reform Bill UpdateA number of our followers were in touch with us quickly after our last alert asking for a bill number for the CEQA Reform Bill in the California legislature and [...]

ACTION ALERT: No Delta Tunnel in the CEQA Exemption Trailer!

Govenor Newsom is trying to slip in pro-tunnel language into the CEQA exemption trailer. The California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) generally requires state and local government agencies to inform decision makers and the public about the potential environmental impacts of proposed projects, and to reduce those environmental impacts to the extent feasible. Call your legislator and Governor Newsom and tell them #NoDeltaTunnel in the CEQA reform bill. 1. Contact your legislator here. Enter your address and it will show you who your State Senator and State Assemblymember are, with links to each of their websites and contact information.2. Contact Governor Newsom’s office:  Via Email: Through his website, scroll down to the email submission form. Via Phone: (916) 445-2841Via Twitter: @CAGovernor  Yours in action,Restore the Delta

DELTA FLOWS: About a Cosmonaut and the Delta Conveyance Project

by Tim Stroshane, Policy Analyst, Restore the DeltaAfter the Wednesday evening “climate change” edition webinar for the Delta Conveyance Project presented by the California Department of Water Resources, I found myself remembering the Soviet cosmonaut Vladimir Komarov. In the spring of 1967, Komarov gave his life for the Soviet space “team.” When I was nine and a half, the Soviet Union sent Komarov into space in Soyuz 1, even though the Soviet leadership of their space agency and the political class knew that its rocket and space capsule had numerous design flaws that were not resolved before launch. Leonid Brezhnev, the Soviet Premier at the time, wanted the mission to happen before May 1, 1967, the 50th anniversary of the Russian Revolution [...]

Delta Flows: The Delta Conveyance Project, Texas-Style

For decades, Anti-California sentiment has been part of American media news coverage, which sadly too often measures state success only in terms of corporate success. The trope, “what is wrong with California,” does not evaluate the societal, environmental, and economic outcomes that would improve the quality of life for working people within our state. It places two segments of an incomplete narrative side-by-side for consideration: a state can succeed through corporate growth, or it can fail. Corporate responsibility is never delineated when the media frames the story as to whether corporations are thriving or failing in California. A recent article in the Los Angeles Times about AECOM moving its headquarters to Dallas accurately asserts that “Texas state officials have for years been trying to lure [...]