Submitted by Tim Quinn on Wed, 09/21/2016 - 3:27pm
Since 2009, the hallmark of California water policy has been a commitment to the coequal goals of improving both water supply reliability and ecosystem health. While this commitment remains as vital today as it was in 2009, recent actions suggest we’re due for a refresher course on what it really means.
Submitted by Tim Quinn on Wed, 08/17/2016 - 12:56pm
If you need a sign that the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta is broken, look no further than San Luis Reservoir. Despite near-average precipitation this year and healthy storage in other north state reservoirs, San Luis is so precipitously low that deliveries were nearly shutoff in early August.
Meanwhile Shasta Lake, the state’s largest reservoir, sits at 109% of its historic average for the date.
What’s wrong with this picture? In a nutshell, we have a water system that is broken from a physical and policy standpoint.
Submitted by Tim Quinn on Wed, 08/03/2016 - 2:29pm
On Tuesday, the State Water Resources Control Board released the first month of conservation data under new state rules that emphasize drought preparedness and local discretion regarding conservation activities. Not surprisingly, the data demonstrates that Californians are making a habit of using water efficiently both indoors and outdoors.
Submitted by Tim Quinn on Wed, 07/20/2016 - 4:21pm
Over the past few months, California water has seen its share of policy shifts. This month brought a development that many hope will set us on a course to better manage aquatic resources with a comprehensive set of tools.
With the release of the Delta Smelt Resiliency Strategy, state and federal agencies have outlined a comprehensive plan that centers on more than just pumping restrictions in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta. ACWA and its member agencies have advocated for such a strategy for the better part of two decades.
Submitted by Tim Quinn on Wed, 06/29/2016 - 5:17pm
Thanks in large part to a unified effort by the water community, the State Water Resources Control Board adopted a new approach to urban conservation this year. The board’s action on May 18 moved us away from a policy that had the wrong metric of success (meeting arbitrary targets) to an approach that incentivizes further investments in local drought-resilient supplies.
Submitted by Tim Quinn on Thu, 05/05/2016 - 7:39am
As we have seen over the past few years, droughts have a way of spurring leadership on important policy issues. In the past two years alone, ACWA and its members have played a leading role in putting substantive proposals on the table to address key issues including sustainable groundwater management, headwaters health and water storage investments.
Submitted by Tim Quinn on Mon, 05/02/2016 - 9:25am
As the water community gathers in Monterey this week, the State Water Board will be getting its monthly update in Sacramento on urban conservation under the state’s emergency regulation.
In what has become a familiar drill, State Water Board staff will report the latest water use figures on how much Californians have reduced urban water use over the same month in 2013. This time, however, the report comes as the water community anticipates action later this month to adjust the emergency regulation to reflect improved water supply conditions in many parts of the state.
Submitted by Tim Quinn on Wed, 03/16/2016 - 2:52pm
With a series of recent downpours sending huge volumes of water into rivers, streams and reservoirs, drought-weary Northern Californians are seeing images they haven’t seen in years.
Lake Shasta picked up about 1 million acre-feet of storage in two weeks, while the Bureau of Reclamation is making flood control releases from Folsom Reservoir, which was at near-historic lows just two months ago. Sacramento River water flowed into the Yolo Bypass for the first time since 2012, and the statewide snowpack is close to average.