Fish die-offs in freshwater lakes are an increasing threat in California, and experts say climate change is to blame. Researchers from UC Davis and Reed College in Portland, Ore., found a strong link between fish deaths in freshwater lakes in Wisconsin and hot summers. They predict that fish die-offs will double by 2050 and quadruple by 2100 in Wisconsin. Andrew Rypel, a UC Davis wildlife, fish and conservation biology researcher, said we should expect similar effects in California. He told The Bee in an interview that California lakes may be even more vulnerable to the effects of climate change than those in Wisconsin, because they host many sensitive cold-water species.
Archive for date: July 12th, 2019
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If you visit Lake Tahoe this summer, the beaches might seem a little smaller than they were a few years ago. It’s not an optical illusion. Large sections of them really are underwater. Dozens of feet of snow that blanked the Sierra Nevada this winter, generated by blizzards from raging atmospheric river storms, have been steadily melting all spring and summer, sending billions of gallons of water rushing downhill and steadily raising the water level at Lake Tahoe.
After years of delays, and millions in cost overruns, San Diego will hire a third-party company to take over the city’s troubled conversion to smart water meters. The announcement was made after the city auditor released a new report highlighting management and staffing issues inside the city’s water department. The City of San Diego launched its conversion to smart water meters in July of 2012 with a completion date of December 2017. But shortly after launching, numerous delays occurred due to a lack of oversight, staffing shortages, and performance issues with the meters. Currently only six percent of San Diego customers have smart water meters installed and the program is now $16 million over budget.
The Sweetwater Authority, a water agency that serves 190,000 people in National City, Bonita and parts of Chula Vista, was last in the news in January when board members voted 6-1 to give themselves ridiculously cheap, heavily subsidized health insurance for their dependents. This is a part-time government body that oversees 100-plus employees earning $176,000 in average salary and benefits that needs far more transparency and accountability. Yet General Manager Tish Berge and board members have taken a step in the opposite direction. They have instituted policies that no longer require that minutes be kept for its two key committees — one that reviews issues related to operations and one that addresses finances and personnel.
Officials began to clean up a massive oil spill Friday that dumped nearly 800,000 gallons of oil and water into a California canyon, making it larger — if less devastating — than the state’s last two major oil spills. The newly revealed spill has been flowing off and on since May and has again stopped, Chevron spokeswoman Veronica Flores-Paniagua said. She and California officials said the spill is not near any waterway and has not significantly affected wildlife. The last flow was Tuesday.
After rushing forward on a plan to send more water to California’s Central Valley, the Trump Administration has unexpectedly hit the brakes and ordered the work already done by federal scientists to be completed by a different team. Just days before federal biologists were set to release new rules governing the future of endangered salmon and drinking water for two-thirds of Californians, the administration replaced them with an almost entirely new group of lawyers, administrators and biologists to “refine” and “improve” the rules, according to an email obtained by KQED.