Although Los Angeles city water customers paid extra for costly imported water during the five-year drought, their water bills will drop very little now that the Department of Water and Power has a plentiful supply of its own, officials said. The DWP surplus does not translate into big savings for individual bill payers because water rates were restructured last year. The new rates are intended to raise more money for water system improvements.”The money that would have gone to purchased water is now going to infrastructure investment,” said DWP spokeswoman Amanda Parsons.
Archive for date: April 24th, 2017
In 1994 an immigrant from Thailand purchased 720 acres near Bakersfield. He intended to grow vegetables and began preparing to plant his crops. At that point, federal and state agents descended by air and ground to arrest him and hauled away the equipment. They said he was destroying the environment of the endangered kangaroo rat, and could not farm its natural habitat. In Northern California and Oregon, environmentalists are destroying dams on the Klamath River for fish. They denied farmers water for irrigation, reducing farming and all related businesses.
Record rains are a double-edged sword for California’s Salinas Valley: While the recent deluge virtually ended the state’s historic drought, it also created muddy, unworkable fields – sending prices for everything from kale to cauliflower soaring. The famed agricultural region just south of Silicon Valley is usually a springtime sea of green vegetables. But this year, there are patches of brown unplanted dirt in “America’s salad bowl,” which supplies more than 60 percent of the country’s leaf lettuce and almost half of its broccoli.
A case in point is how the state Department of Water Resources has handled Lake Oroville for years. It continues despite considerable public and political pressure since the spillway collapse. Two developments last week perfectly illustrate the point. One involves awarding a nine-figure bid to a company to fix the spillway without any detail about what the company is actually doing. The other involves an independent review of what went wrong, which takes on added weight because the promised review by the government is nonexistent so far.
Official reports released Monday say the catastrophic damage to Oroville Dam’s main spillway probably stemmed from swift water flows under the concrete chute, which was cracked and of uneven thickness. The observations, contained in consultants’ reports prepared for the state Department of Water Resources, echo much of an independent assessment made for UC Berkeley’s Center for Catastrophic Risk Management. An official verdict on the cause is not due until the fall, when a separate forensics team investigating the February spillway break will submit its report.