Tag Archive for: Sacramento River

Newsom Defies Environmentalist Opposition To Build Badly Needed Water Tunnel

The Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta is the West Coast’s largest estuary, an awe-inspiring area of wetlands with 700 miles of waterways and 1,100 miles of levees nestled between the San Francisco Bay and the Central Valley south of Sacramento. It’s one of the most magnificent places in California—a refuge of orchards, marinas, tin-roofed shacks, plantation homes and tiny historic towns that feels more Deep South than Golden State.

Sites Project Authority Certifies Sites Reservoir’s Final Environmental Report

An important milestone was reached Friday for the construction of another reservoir in California. The Final Environmental Impact Report (EIR) for Sites Reservoir was certified and the Sites Reservoir Project was approved by the Sites Project Authority, the lead agency under the California Environmental Quality Act.

Next up for the Sites Project Authority is to move the project through the final planning stages. After getting through the final stages, crews will begin building the reservoir.

Opinion: California Has a New Plan for the Delta but Faces the Same Conflicts Over Water

California’s water warriors have a new arena for their perpetual conflict over the allocation of the state’s ever-evolving supply – a nearly 6,000-page proposal from the state Water Resources Control Board.

The draft essentially calls for sharp reductions in diversions from the Sacramento River and its tributaries to allow more water to flow through the environmentally troubled Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta.

Tribe Signs Pact With California to Work Together on Efforts to Save Endangered Salmon

A California tribe has signed agreements with state and federal agencies to work together on efforts to return endangered Chinook salmon to their traditional spawning areas upstream of Shasta Dam, a deal that could advance the long-standing goal of tribal leaders to reintroduce fish that were transplanted from California to New Zealand more than a century ago and still thrive there.

Historic Partnership Penned to Help Save Endangered Salmon

Over the past year we’ve been showing you California’s effort to save the winter run chinook salmon – a fish that has almost been lost to dammed rivers and warming waters.

It’s part of a growing partnership between state and federal wildlife agencies – and a small California tribe that’s been fighting to save those fish for years, and bring them back home.

Opinion: Delta Tunnel Project Won’t Provide Reliable Water Supply California Needs

The California Department of Water Resources is using the winter storms to claim that the proposed Delta Conveyance project would help ensure a more reliable water supply for the State Water Project in light of how climate change will alter seasonal patterns of rain and drought.

In reality, the benefits of the conveyance project are speculative at best.

Opinion: The Feds Can Curb a Foolish California Water Giveaway

About 15 miles north of Fresno sits Millerton Lake, a reservoir created in the 1930s when the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation built Friant Dam on the San Joaquin River. The dam provides irrigation water for fields and groves in much of the San Joaquin Valley, but it wiped out the Chinook salmon migration that had existed on the river for tens of thousands of years.

It also threatened the rights of landowners to divert naturally flowing San Joaquin River water for their fields. Instead of losing their rights, though, farmers who had land near the river agreed to trade their water to the federal dam project in exchange for “substitute water,” delivered to them from the Sacramento River.

In Dry California, Salty Water Creeps Into Key Waterways

Charlie Hamilton hasn’t irrigated his vineyards with water from the Sacramento River since early May, even though it flows just yards from his crop.

Nearby to the south, the industrial Bay Area city of Antioch has supplied its people with water from the San Joaquin River for just 32 days this year, compared to roughly 128 days by this time in a wet year.

They may be close by, but these two rivers, central arms of California’s water system, have become too salty to use in some places as the state’s punishing drought drags on.

Tunnel Vision: What’s Next for the Governor’s Plan to Replumb the Delta?

California water officials are poised to release the first environmental review of a controversial project to replumb the Delta — a plan in the works for decades that has alternately been called a water grab or a critical update to shore up state supplies.

Known as the Delta Conveyance Project, a tunnel supported by Gov. Gavin Newsom would take water from the Sacramento River and bypass the vast Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta, funneling the flows directly to pumps in the south Delta or straight to Bethany Reservoir at the northern end of the California Aqueduct.

California’s Continued Drought

As California’s drought deepens, it is worth checking in on the status of water supplies and what might be in store for the rest of the summer, and beyond.

What started with the promise of a wet water year, ended up dry, again. In January, the 8-Station Index showed precipitation totals keeping pace with the wettest year on record. Then it got dry and accumulated totals flat-lined. The final result is a below average water year, although not one of the driest years on record.