Cost To Rebuild Major California Reservoir Rises To $2.3 Billion, Tripling From Two Years Ago

The cost to bring Anderson Dam, which holds back the largest reservoir in California’s Santa Clara County, up to modern earthquake standards has increased to $2.3 billion, water officials said Monday. That’s double what was estimated a year ago, triple the price tag from two years ago, and nearly certain to drive water rates higher next year across Silicon Valley.

Opinion: Water ‘Divorce’ Election is Manifestation of Larger County Problems

Customers in two North County water districts overwhelmingly voted to leave a regionwide agency for a simple reason: They can get less-expensive water elsewhere.

But the broader dynamics that led to this moment are complex — and are expected to increase costs for years to come for ratepayers remaining with the San Diego County Water Authority, an umbrella organization currently with 24 member agencies.

The 20 Farming Families Who Use More Water From the Colorado River Than Some Western States

As the Colorado River snakes through the deserts of the Southwest United States, its water is diverted to cities, states, tribes and farmers along its course.

Agriculture has always been the largest use of the Colorado River, and California’s Imperial Irrigation District, established in 1911, has among the earliest claims and by far the largest claim to the river.

California Farmers are Reeling From Loss of Powerful Congressional Allies

California’s agricultural industry – the nation’s largest food producer — is fighting for its political future.

First came the death of Sen. Dianne Feinstein, a staunch Democratic ally who was unafraid of prioritizing farms over endangered fish in the state’s long-running water wars. Then House Republicans kicked Rep. Kevin McCarthy, a native of the Central Valley’s agricultural heartland, out of the speakership.

Environment Report: We’re Diving Into the Western Water Wars

In two years, almost every major agreement currently keeping battle swords sheathed on the Colorado River will expire. Seven western states and Mexico will have to wrestle with the fact that there’s less water for their people and industries than before. And they have until 2026 to get new agreements to use much, much less water in place.

The Scary Big Picture of Having Less Water

As a society we constantly hear the “drought warning.” Then we endure some water conservation efforts and a couple of years later everything seems to go back to normal. As a result, we have become numb to the word “drought.” Wildfires are brutal and get our immediate attention, but we expect they will also burn out.

AZ Republicans and Democrats Sign Letters on Colorado River Water

Divvying up Colorado River water has been the subject of at least two letters this week from Republican and Democratic members of Arizona’s congressional delegation.

One note was sent to the head of the U.S. Department of Interior and the other to the governor of California.

City of Calistoga Issues Mandate for Water Customers to Conserve

The City of Calistoga has declared a Stage II Water emergency and starting May 1, residents and businesses will be required to conserve water. The move is a response to a recent reduction in the State’s water allocation. Citing back-to back dry years and limited precipitation in the northern part of the State, on March 23, the California Department of Water Resources reduced the State Water Project allocations for Napa County from 15% to 5%. The reduction represents a loss of approximately 25% of Calistoga’s annual demand.

Attempts to Protect Arizona’s Groundwater and Rivers Meet Legislative Resistance

The Arizona Legislature has taken up a range of water-related measures this year, but some bills that would strengthen the state’s water rules to protect declining groundwater and desert streams have run into opposition and have failed to move forward.

Republican and Democratic legislators introduced several bills that would establish some groundwater rules in unregulated rural areas where there are no limits on pumping and where water levels are dropping.

Opinion: California Must Bypass Water Politics and Work Toward Solutions For Our Thirsty State

California’s water wars are epic. They’ve inspired Hollywood productions and Pulitzer Prize-winning journalism. Water has been the source of both great wealth and great poverty in California. A fellow Irishman, James Mulholland, who was born around the corner from where I was and even baptized in the same church, delivered water to the City of Los Angeles with what was described as “chicanery, subterfuge … and a strategy of lies.”