About 85 percent of California’s urban water districts have told the state they believe they have adequate supplies to handle continued drought and should not be subject to state-mandated conservation targets. As a result, state regulators will not force most districts to reduce water use this year, even as they caution that the five-year drought persists.
Independent water districts in the Sacramento area have increased pay for general managers by 14 percent over the last five years – a period when most raised customer rates and limited their use of water during the drought.
The California Fish and Game Commission will consider protecting the northern spotted owl under the state’s Endangered Species Act and weigh whether sport anglers should be allowed to take more non-native bass from the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta.
Firms seeking to secure contracts as part of the City of Sacramento’s water meter installation program will have to produce more than a favorable price. They also will have to meet criteria in areas of customer service and local hiring.
Customers in the four-county region’s 23 largest water districts increased water use by 22 percent from June 2015 to June 2016. Statewide water use increased by 8 percent over the same period, according to the State Water Resources Control Board.
The old rules will remain in effect during the review, which could take two years or longer, but the fisheries agencies’ work could affect Gov. Jerry Brown’s proposal to overhaul the Delta’s existing plumbing system.
Sacramento is considering scrapping the lowest bidder requirement in its water meter installation program, a step it says could get meters put in faster and reduce customer complaints. The change could also allow contracting bias in a program that has weathered setbacks and scandals, including the recent finding by the city auditor that its onetime project manager had sex and used alcohol and drugs on the job.
California officials released an environmental blueprint for Gov. Jerry Brown’s controversial Delta tunnels project, saying the $15.5 billion plan “minimizes potential effects” on endangered fish species whose populations have dwindled following decades of water pumping.
A group of commercial fishermen won a potentially significant court ruling in the seemingly endless battle over California’s water supply and the volumes of water pumped south through the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta.
The leaves atop giant sequoias in the Sierra Nevada are better at storing water than those closer to the ground, an adaptation that may explain how their treetops are able to survive 300 feet in the air, researchers at American River College and Humboldt State University have found.
Gov. Jerry Brown’s plan to build twin tunnels beneath the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta was hailed Tuesday as the long-awaited salvation for the damaged estuary – and also lambasted as a nightmarish boondoggle. And that was just Day 1 of the state’s marathon hearings on the $15.5 billion proposal.