Arizona says it’s one step closer to figuring out how to divvy up water cuts as the supply from the Colorado River becomes more limited. Several Western states that rely on the river are working on drought plans. The federal government wants them done by the end of the year. While Arizona hasn’t said it would meet that deadline, a committee meeting on the issue announced Thursday it is making progress. The plan isn’t final, including how to fund it.
Archive for date: November 30th, 2018
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As Gov. Jerry Brown leaves office, his controversial Delta tunnels plan is on the ropes. Most farmers who would get water from the tunnels still haven’t agreed to pay their share. Rather than support the tunnels, the Trump administration is trying to bend federal environmental laws to simply deliver more water through the existing Delta system to San Joaquin Valley farms and cities — and just rejected the project’s request for a big startup loan. Brown’s successor, Gavin Newsom, says he would like to see the project scaled down. Lawsuits challenging the project abound.
Southern California’s ski resorts got their first snowfall from Thursday’s storm, with some spots in the San Bernardino Mountains receiving up to 8 inches. More of the white stuff may be on the way Saturday evening. Snow Summit, with a peak elevation of 8,200 feet, received 4 to 8 inches of fresh snow from the recent storm, according to its website. The Big Bear Lake resort had opened for the season Nov. 16 with a base of man-made snow.
A scheduled shutdown of a pipeline supplying most of the water for Inland Valley cities has prompted officials to ask customers to limit their water use over a 10-day period. The Metropolitan Water District of Southern California is suspending water deliveries through its Rialto Pipeline from Monday, Dec. 3 to Wednesday, Dec. 12 to conduct scheduled maintenance on a portion of the pipeline, said Kirk Howie, chief administrative officer for Three Valleys Municipal Water District.
“We’ve been in denial for a long time,” a water official said about Borrego Springs residents coming to terms with a looming water shortage. Those desert folks aren’t alone. Denial about changes and limits in the natural world is running into harsh reality, whether it’s regarding water supply, wildfires or sea-level rise. A cold snap back East or rain in California doesn’t change any of that. While the politically charged debate over climate change rages at high levels, states and local communities are having to deal with its effects. Consensus on solutions is hard to find because, invariably, there are big economic and quality-of-life issues at stake.