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WaterSmart Landscape Contest Winner Named

The Vista Irrigation District board of directors recognized a customer for her entry in the  WaterSmart Landscape Contest. The annual contest recognizes outstanding water-wise residential landscapes based on the criteria of overall attractiveness, appropriate plant selection, design, appropriate maintenance, and efficient methods of irrigation. Deborah Brandt received the 2019 Best in District award after replacing her water and maintenance intensive lawn with a WaterSmart landscape, saving both water and money. By including contrasting elements, such as cactus, river rock and wood chips, against a backdrop of dramatic magenta, purple and striking orange, Brandt transformed her yard into an array of textures and colors.

California Taps Clean Air Money To Pay For Drinking Water

California legislative leaders agreed Sunday to spend $130 million a year to improve water systems in communities where people can’t drink from their taps, something Democratic leaders say amounts to a crisis in one of the nation’s wealthiest states. To pay for it, the state would tap a fund dedicated to reducing greenhouse gas emissions, a move that alarmed some environmental activists who say its set up an unfair choice between clean air and water. “What kind of choice is that?” said Kathryn Phillips, director of Sierra Club California. “People shouldn’t have to choose between clean water and clean air.”

Moccasin Dam, Which Came Close To Failure Last Year, Is Repaired And Working

A leaking dam that prompted evacuations in the Sierra foothills during an intense rainstorm last year has been repaired and is again storing drinking water for 2.7 million Bay Area residents, San Francisco water officials said Monday. The San Francisco Public Utilities Commission spent almost $22 million over the past year repairing and reinforcing Moccasin Dam in Tuolumne County. A storm in March sent a torrent of water and debris into the reservoir, raising fears the earthen barrier would collapse.

Warming Weather To Increase Sierra Snowmelt, Flooding Risk

Forecasters say warming California weather will increase melting of the huge Sierra Nevada snowpack and raise water levels in many rivers and streams in the coming week. The National Weather Service says this will heighten the risk of flooding in adjacent areas, including along the upper Merced River in Yosemite National Park. Forecasters say nearby residents, hikers and campers should pay close attention to water levels and be ready to move to safety.

As Water Scarcity Increases, Desalination Plants Are On The Rise

Some 30 miles north of San Diego, along the Pacific Coast, sits the Claude “Bud” Lewis Carlsbad Desalination Plant, the largest effort to turn salt water into fresh water in North America. Each day 100 million gallons of seawater are pushed through semi-permeable membranes to create 50 million gallons of water that is piped to municipal users. Carlsbad, which became fully operational in 2015, creates about 10 percent of the fresh water the 3.1 million people in the region use, at about twice the cost of the other main source of water.

Temperatures Near 100 Expected Inland As San Diego Heats Up Tuesday

Southern California’s weather is expected to continue heating up on Tuesday, with temperatures approaching 100 degrees in San Diego’s inland valleys, according to the latest forecast from the National Weather Service‘s local office. On Tuesday morning, “patchy dense fog could make travel hazardous” along the coast, according to the weather service. Then temperatures will begin to heat up. “The heat will be on again today as high pressure aloft peaks in strength over the southwest states,” the weather service said.

San Diego Approves $1.6B Budget That Addresses Homelessness, Other Priorities

The San Diego City Council approved a $1.6 billion budget Monday for the coming fiscal year that maintains popular programs and avoids significant cuts or employee layoffs, despite slowing growth in tax revenues. Council members made an array of mostly minor, last-minute adjustments Monday during a two-hour public hearing. Those changes boost money for lifeguard staffing, tree trimming and library programs such as youth tutoring.

Hispanic Chamber Of Commerce Has A Successful Business Expo

The 4th Annual North County Business Expo at the California Center for the Arts, Escondido Conference Center was a great success! Presented by the San Diego County Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, this Expo brings together business professionals from all of North County. We invited our local Chambers and their members to participate. The Fallbrook Chamber, San Marcos Chamber, Escondido Chamber and the Veterans Chamber all had vendor tables along with 40 plus other businesses and organizations..

Safe Water Fund Plan Advances To California Legislators

More than 1 million Californians don’t have access to safe drinking water, and after haggling throughout the weekend, California legislators approved a plan June 9 that would help fund work at contaminated water supplies across the state without imposing a tax. The state Conference Committee on the Budget unanimously approved a compromise plan that would allocate $133.4 million of the state’s proposed $213 billion budget for project costs in communities currently unable to use their water for cooking, bathing,

New Report Highlights Acquisition Trends In The U.S. Water Market

The U.S. municipal water landscape is undergoing a transformation as critical infrastructure services — water, gas, and electricity — converge under single investor-owned utility banners. This trend is highlighted by the growing roster of diversified infrastructure service providers owning water and wastewater utilities in the U.S., according to a new report from Bluefield Research. The recent report, “U.S. Private Water Utilities: Drivers, Competitive Landscape and Acquisition Trends, 2019,” provides in-depth analysis of investor-owned water utility strategies and of 517 water and wastewater system acquisitions from 2015 through 2018, including Eversource Energy’s $1.68 million (USD) for Aquarion Water, NW Natural’s roll-up of smaller systems in the Pacific Northwest, and Aqua America’s $4.3 billion (USD) acquisition of People Gas.