Archive for date: July 28th, 2017
You are now in San Diego County category.
President Donald Trump’s administration gave California land developers and farmers a reason to cheer when the White House last month rolled back controversial regulations for wetlands imposed during the Obama presidency. They may want to hold off on the celebration. A powerful California water agency is poised to adopt its own regulations that could protect more of the state’s wetlands from being plowed, paved over or otherwise damaged. Environmental groups are pressuring the State Water Resources Control Board to push back against Trump’s decision and adopt a wetlands policy that’s even stricter than former President Barack Obama’s.
Significantly more schools in San Diego are having their water tested for toxic lead than elsewhere in California, prompting local water officials to begin pressing for state reimbursement of steep testing costs. Since California began in January requiring water agencies to conduct lead tests for free at all schools that submit requests, 507 out of 1,259 schools tested statewide have been in San Diego County. That number dwarfs second-place Los Angeles County, with 100 schools tested, third-place Orange County, with 85 schools tested, and every other county in the state.
The California Department of Water Resources announced Friday that it has certified the environmental analysis of the California WaterFix, which has as its core the “twin-tunnels” project through the Delta. DWR Acting Director Cindy Messer said the certification is “an important benchmark in moving California towards a more reliable water supply.” “With this certification, our state is now closer to modernizing our aging water-delivery system in a way that improves reliability and protects the environment,” she added.
Today’s news that Sites Reservoir is likely to be built is proof you can’t keep a good idea down, although clearly you can delay it a heck of a long time. Work on the current version of the reservoir west of Maxwell began more than 20 years ago, when the federal government realized it needed more water to meet the requirements of the Endangered Species Act in California. There was only one large untapped source of surface water in the state, and that was the Sacramento Valley downstream from Shasta Dam.
Deciding how to give people water to drink and grow food — and to do so without damaging the state’s economy or the environment — shouldn’t have been this hard. For the last dozen years and more, California has been entangled in heated debate over updating the state’s water system. But now we’re closing in on a resolution to that question. That, in turn, opens the way to considering future water policy in a very different political landscape.