By Lloyd G. Carter
All you need to know about Wednesday's (March 19) drought field hearing in Fresno of the House Committee on Natural Resources is that salmon were never mentioned and the GOP pols knew how to throw red meat to the farmers in the packed city hall chambers. It speaks volumes that there were seven Republicans and only one Democrat (Rep. Jim Costa) at the hearing chaired by Rep. Richard N. "Doc" Hastings, who is retiring after his term ends.
Hastings said he invited all 21 Democrats on the Natural Resources Committee to participate in the hearing but only Costa, who had no explanation why no other Democrats showed up, was in attendance. Committee members Jared Huffman and Grace Napolitano, former chair of the house subcommittee on water, were among the no shows.
Hastings also said he was "very, very disappointed" that State Water Resources Control Board chairwoman Felicia Markus failed to appear despite being invited. Marcus, who previously worked for the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) as western regional director, also served as EPA director for Region 9 and was appointed by Republican Gov. Arnold Schwarzennegger to the Delta Stewarship Council. READ MORE »
By Lloyd G. Carter
Westlands Water District directors Wednesday (Nov. 20) hosted a workshop on the controversial Bay Delta Conservation Plan (BDCP) and were told by California Department of Water Resources (DWR) officials the big federal water district in western Fresno and Kings counties may have to pony up $162 million over the next three years for pre-construction planning.
DWR Director Mark Cowin told Westlands directors DWR will need $500 million over the next three years to finance pre-construction engineering and other studies while the BDCP undergoes expected court challenges by environmentalists and Northern California/Delta farming interests. The BDCP document now runs over 30,000 pages. Westlands directors should decide by January 2014 if they wish to opt in, Cowin said. READ MORE »
State and Regional Water Boards and state Health Department run afoul of Clean Water Act and Safe Drinking Water ActSubmitted by Lloyd Carter on Wed, 09/04/2013 - 08:48.
Editor's note: The following is the sequel to a story posted at www.lloydgcarter.com on May 22. It can be read here. The following concerns California's abysmal efforts to meet goals set by the Clean Water Act and Safe Drinking Water Act.
By Patrick Porgans and Lloyd G. Carter
Forty-one years ago, a united Congress overrode President Nixon's veto of the Clean Water Act (CWA), which ordered states to limit pollutants in the nation's waterways. Coupled with subsequent amendments, the CWA required all states to assess and establish Total Maximum Daily Limits (TMDLs) of pollutants for lakes, creeks, rivers, estuaries and ocean shorelines. If the states wouldn't do it, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) could step in and impose safety limits.READ MORE »
Massive Loss of Endangered Winter Run Salmon
Perhaps half of this years spawning class die in irrigation ditches: survivors
hammered by mismanagement of Shasta cold water reserves
During April, May and early June, large numbers of endangered winter-run Chinook salmon and other species were drawn into channels in the Yolo Bypass and Colusa Basin and died, according to reports by California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) and National Marine Fisheries Service biologists (NMFS). The total number of stranded fish is unknown but agency biologists said it could be as high as half of this years returning population of winter-run. This tragedy is exacerbated by high temperature stress on spawning winter-run caused by mismanagement of limited cold water pools in Shasta Reservoir this year.
READ MORE »
Some unanswered questions about Westlands Water District grower Mark Borba's racial slur against President Obama and the behind-the-scenes efforts to get Westlands more Northern California water
By Lloyd G. Carter
Dr. Jeffrey Michael says the Westlands Water District and Rep. Jim Costa are exagaretting the impacts of water cutbacks to the nation's largest federal water district. Westlands may only receive 20 percent of its requested amount of water this year and claims it will be impacted worse than 2009, when Westlands supplies were held to just 10 percent. Dr. Michael is director of the Business Forecasting Center at the University of Pacific in Stockton. You can read his blog here: http://valleyecon.blogspot.com/
Jim Costa, a Democrat, represents the Westlands area and wrote a letter to U.S. Bureau of Reclamation commissioner Michael Connor on March 3, claiming the cutbacks, due to dry year conditions and court ordered protections for Delta fish, including smelt and salmon, will cost his region's economy $2.2 billion. Thomas Birmingham, general manager of Westlands, estimated economy losses of "more than $1 billion", in a March 22 press release, more than a billion less than Costa's prediction. Neither Costa or Birmingham revealed the source of their numbers or how they define "region." READ MORE »
California Department of Water Resources quietly backs away from asserting that the BDCP will increase water supply reliabilitySubmitted by Lloyd Carter on Wed, 04/10/2013 - 19:59.
By Deirdre Des Jardins
California Water Research
In August, 2012, California Water Research released a report, Incorporating Drought Risk Into California Water Resources Planning. Since that time we have been waging a quiet campaign for the Department of Water Resources to recognize that their climate modelling for the Bay Delta Conservation Plan has significant limitations and inconsistencies. READ MORE »