drainage

Drainage Deal Imminent?

A tentative agreement is near in secret talks between the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation,the U.S. Justice Department and the Westlands Water District to settle three long-simmering drainage lawsuits, according to Interior Department sources. The settlement could be a bonanza for Westlands, which has been searching for half a century for a solution on how to safely dispose of farm drainwater containing salts, heavy metals and the trace element selenium. Westlands drainage triggered deformities in birds at evaporation ponds at the Kesterson National Wildlife Refuge in Merced County more than 30 years ago. According to one source, Westlands will only have to retire a minimum amount of selenium-tainted soils even though a safe drainage solution has not been achieved. A current Reclamation plan to reduce or eliminate toxic drainwater will cost an estimated $2.7 billion for Westlands' 600 growers. Geologists say more than 300,000 acres of land in Westlands and adjacent water districts (state and federal) have elevated levels of selenium, a trace element highly toxic to birds and fish. Environmentalists have called for a cessation of farming on these tainted soils.  READ MORE »

Federal Judge gives Westlands and Reclamation six more months to pursue settlement talks on drainage problem

Federal Judge Lawrence O’Neill in Fresno has signed an order allowing the Westlands Water District and the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation another 6 months to pursue settlement talks without any further implementation of the 2007 Record of Decision regarding Westlands' long-standing farm drainage water problem.

The key final paragraph of O'Neill's order reads as follows:  READ MORE »

Groups write letter to US BOR.

A coalition of environmental groups has written the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation expressing deep skepticism about a planned drainage "solution" for the Westlands Water District. To read the letter click HERE.

They Said It...

"In the San Joaquin Valley, about 1.5 million of the 5.6 million irrigated acres have drainage-related problems. In Westlands alone, over 200,000 acres have saline groundwater within 10 feet of the soil surface."
From the Westlands Water District website
www.westlands.org on January 24, 2001. (See www.InternetArchive.org )

Oppose the San Luis Drainage Resolution Act - bad for taxpayers ...

Oppose the San Luis Drainage Resolution Act - bad for taxpayers ...
By brthomas
Selenium, arsenic and other toxins that are released from these irrigated toxic waste farms pollutes southern California. These pollutants then return north via the San Joaquin River to poison the California Delta and San Francisco Bay. ...
BRT Insights - Whitewater Kayaking - http://brt-insights.blogspot.com/

FEINSTEIN IN THE WRONG CAMP?

California environmental groups have grown increasingly concerned that U.S. Senator Dianne Feinstein is secretly negotiating a "sweetheart" deal with the Westlands Water District that will harm the Delta and will allow continued irrigation of high selenium soils. Environmentalists remain deeply suspicious of Westlands' claim that it has a viable solution for the drainage crisis affecting the western San Joaquin Valley. Westlands, which only has a few hundred growers, is seeking enough water annual to meet the needs of a city of 10 million people. The California Water Impact Network (C-WIN) and the California Sportsfishing Protection Alliance (CSPA) recently wrote Sen. Feinstein to express their concerns.
CLICK HERE TO READ THE LETTER TO FEINSTEIN

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