A public meeting will be held today in Clarksburg on the state’s $25 billion proposal to build a pair of water diversion tunnels in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta.
The meeting is from 3 to 7 p.m. today at Clarksburg Middle School, 52870 Netherlands Road, in Clarksburg. The “open house” format allows people to drop in any time during the four-hour meeting to view informational displays, speak with project officials and have their comments on the project recorded.
Known as the Bay Delta Conservation Plan, the project calls for two giant tunnels, each 40 feet in diameter and 35 miles long, to divert part of the Sacramento River’s flow out of the estuary and directly to existing state and federal water diversion pumps near Tracy.
The project includes building three large intakes on the east bank of the river, all in Sacramento County, between Clarksburg and Courtland. It also includes restoring wildlife habitat on 100,000 acres of Delta farmland.
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The goal of the project is to make water deliveries from the Delta more reliable while restoring populations of numerous endangered species in the estuary. The new water plumbing would be funded by bonds issued by the state Department of Water Resources, the main project sponsor, and repaid through costlier water rates charged to parties who benefit from the project. Most of the habitat restoration would be funded by state and federal taxpayers.
DWR released a draft environmental impact study on the project in December, and public comments are being accepted on that document through April 14. Additional public hearings are planned, and a final decision is expected about the end of this year.
For more information, visit www.baydeltaconservationplan.com or call (866) 924-9955.