Voices on Water Blog

Late Storms Help, But There’s No Escaping Need to Conserve This Year

Even as rain pelted parts of Northern California yesterday, the latest snow survey confirmed the drought is far from over.  Department of Water Resources officials say the meager statewide snowpack – still just one-third of normal despite a modest boost from the storms – does not bode well for our water supply outlook this summer.

While ACWA is working on several fronts to help member agencies combat drought impacts this year, water conservation remains a key tool as drought conditions persist and potentially intensify in the near future.

Need for Storage, ESA Flexibility Comes Through at D.C. Conference

By ACWA President John Coleman and Vice President Kathy Tiegs

When ACWA members arrived in Washington, D.C. in late February for the association’s annual D.C. Conference, three topics were on everyone’s mind: California’s drought and the need for both short-term and long-term solutions.

In discussions with Administration officials and meetings on Capitol Hill, the conversation quickly turned to the drought and how it is affecting farms, communities and the entire economy of our state.

All Things Drought in Focus at Tomorrow’s Drought Briefing

Everything you want to know about California’s statewide drought will be presented at a special briefing tomorrow sponsored by ACWA, the California Department of Water Resources, the California State Association of Counties (CSAC), the League of California Cities, the California Farm Water Coalition, the California Farm Bureau Federation and others.

Ultra-Low Folsom Lake Underscores Power of 2014 Drought

I had a chance to hike down to Folsom Lake on Martin Luther King Jr. Day under sunny skies and a daytime high temperature of about 68 degrees. My wife and I were curious to witness what thousands of people have been trekking out to see as the shrinking lake reveals acre after acre of dry lake bed and even the remnants of a long-submerged Gold Rush-era town. We stood there by a tree stumped more than half a century ago when the lake was filled, a stump that this time of year should be 100 feet under water.

Looking Back at a Busy 2013

With the year nearly over, it’s a good time to look back at what was a busy and productive 2013 for ACWA. Above all, our members once again came together to foster agreement on some of the state’s most complex water issues, choosing to build consensus rather than focusing on differences.

ACWA Board Sends Powerful Message with Statewide Water Action Plan

Last month, the ACWA Board of Directors voted unanimously and enthusiastically to approve a Statewide Water Action Plan (SWAP) for California. The vote capped an intensive five-month effort convened by ACWA with the goal of crafting a specific plan that could be broadly supported by water interests and serve as a sustainable path forward for California.

Region 5 Tackles Water Reliability Issues on the Central Coast

ACWA members flocked to Carmel on Sept. 22 and 23 to learn about the water woes of the Monterey Peninsula at the ACWA Region 5 fall program, “Water Reliability: An Environmental Balancing Act.”

We started the program on Sept. 22 at the Chateau Julien Wine Estate to learn how climate, soil drainage and aquifer preservation all affect the growing and winemaking process. I would like to extend a special thank you to Bob Brower for hosting our group at his winery that Sunday evening.


First Half of 2013-’14 Legislative Session Yields Some Progress on Water Bond

The Legislature wrapped up its work for 2013 in the early hours of Sept. 13, capping a legislative year that saw ACWA and its coalition partners play an effective role on legislation that could have significant impacts on its member agencies.

While ACWA spent significant time and energy opposing a move to transfer the state’s entire drinking water program to the State Water Resources Control Board (AB 145) and worked on many other bills, including California Environmental Quality Act reform, we also played a leadership role in advancing the dialog on the 2014 water bond.

Paying Tribute to ACWA Members – This Month and Throughout the Year

August is ACWA’s inaugural Member Appreciation Month, and I’m jumping at this opportunity as president to formally thank ACWA members for your membership.

We have a long and proud history as an organization, with more than a century on the books as the leading voice for local water agencies in the state. But this voice – and indeed our various accomplishments over the years as a community – would not be possible without the solid commitment and support of ACWA’s membership.

Region 1 Promotes Drinking Local

On July 19, ACWA members gathered in Santa Rosa for our Region 1 hosted program, “Take it From the Tap: Promoting Drink Local Campaigns.” At the program, we heard presentations on drink local campaigns, hydration stations, getting the message into schools, and an update and next steps on the regional “Take it From the Tap” campaign.

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