California Water Related

We hold our convenient truths to be self-evident – Dangerous ideas in California water

California WaterBlog - August 27, 2017 - 8:00pm
by Jay Lund Success in water management requires broad agreement and coalitions.  But people often seem to group themselves into communities of interests and ideology, which see complex water problems differently.  Each group tends to hold different truths to be … Continue reading →

Habitat Preferences of various Delta species

California WaterBlog - August 20, 2017 - 8:00pm
Like fish, the different human professions involved in the Delta have different habitat preferences: Lawyers: high turbidity and fear, complex egosystems, either high and cynical levels of expectation, abundant funds Engineers: high clarity, data-rich nutrient sources, high expectation concentrations, abundant … Continue reading →

California WaterFix and Delta Smelt

California WaterBlog - August 13, 2017 - 8:00pm
by Peter Moyle and James Hobbs The delta smelt is on a trajectory towards extinction in the wild.  Heading into 2017, the spawning adult population was at an all-time low although this past wet winter has apparently seen a small … Continue reading →

Small, self-sufficient water systems continue to battle a hidden drought

California WaterBlog - August 6, 2017 - 10:06pm
by Amanda Fencl and Meghan Klasic California’s drought appears over, at least above ground. As of April 2017, reservoirs were around 2 million acre feet above normal with record breaking snowpack . This is great news for the 75% of Californians that … Continue reading →

Fish, flows, and 5937 – legal challenges on the Santa Maria River

California WaterBlog - July 30, 2017 - 8:00pm
by Karrigan Bork, JD, PhD Driving down the 101, you cross a half-mile long bridge over the Santa Maria River into the city of Santa Maria, California. It’s a large bridge, with big levees to constrain the river on either … Continue reading →

Water wasted to the sea?

California WaterBlog - July 24, 2017 - 8:00am
by James E. Cloern, Jane Kay, Wim Kimmerer, Jeffrey Mount, Peter B. Moyle, and Anke Mueller-Solger This article originally appeared in the journal San Francisco Estuary and Watershed Science.   If we farmed the Central Valley or managed water supplies for … Continue reading →

A simplified method to classify streams and improve California’s water management

California WaterBlog - July 16, 2017 - 8:00pm
by Belize Lane, Sam Sandoval, and Sarah Yarnell Alterations to the natural flow regime for human water management activities have degraded river ecosystems worldwide. Such alterations are particularly destructive in regions with highly variable climates like California, where native riverine … Continue reading →

Reflections on Cadillac Desert

California WaterBlog - July 9, 2017 - 8:00pm
by Jay Lund In 1987, when Mark Reisner published his book Cadillac Desert, I had just begun professing on water management. The book went “viral,” before the word viral had its present-day internet-intoxicated meaning.  The book offered a compelling revisionist … Continue reading →

San Joaquin Valley Water Supplies – Unavoidable Variability and Uncertainty

California WaterBlog - July 2, 2017 - 8:00pm
by Brad Arnold1, Alvar Escriva-Bou2, and Jay Lund1 1 UC Davis Center for Watershed Sciences 2 Public Policy Institute of California Passage of the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act (SGMA) and the recent drought have brought attention to chronic shortages of … Continue reading →

Can Sacramento Valley reservoirs adapt to flooding with a warmer climate?

California WaterBlog - June 25, 2017 - 8:00pm
  by Jay Lund and Ann Willis Much has been written on potential effects and adaptations for California’s water supply from climate warming, particularly from changes in snowpack accumulation and melting, sea level rise, and possible overall drying or wetting … Continue reading →

Irrigation Management in the Western States, seen from overseas

California WaterBlog - June 18, 2017 - 8:00pm
by Fandi P. Nurzaman The transformation of the western United States by irrigation offers hope for developing countries looking for models to improve their irrigation system for food security or agricultural prosperity. The transformation of the American West from barren … Continue reading →

Summer Snowmelt Safety – Know the Flow Before You Go

California WaterBlog - June 11, 2017 - 8:00pm
By Megan Nguyen As recently as this weekend, winter storms have brought much snow to the Sierra Nevada after five years of drought. Warm temperatures have begun to melt the mountain snow that will flow down the valley through a … Continue reading →

Blacklock Marsh: Tidal Habitat No Panacea for Thoughtful Restoration

California WaterBlog - June 4, 2017 - 8:00pm
by John Durand and Peter Moyle Returning open tidal exchange to diked lands is a primary goal of Delta restoration, driven by the 2008 Biological Opinion from USFWS. This document requires 8000 acres of tidal and subtidal habitat to be … Continue reading →

Better Information Can Help the Environment

California WaterBlog - May 21, 2017 - 8:00pm
by Henry McCann and Alvar Escriva-Bou This blog was originally posted on the Public Policy Institute’s Viewpoints blog. We know that California’s aquatic species are at risk from a host of stressors and that drought pushes them closer to the … Continue reading →

The Future of California’s Unique Salmon and Trout: Good News, Bad News

California WaterBlog - May 16, 2017 - 11:00am
by Robert Lusardi, Peter Moyle, Patrick Samuel, and Jacob Katz California is a hot spot for endemic species, those found nowhere else in the world.  Among these species are 20 kinds of salmon and trout. That is an astonishing number … Continue reading →

Facing Extinction II: Making hard decisions

California WaterBlog - May 7, 2017 - 8:00pm
by Jason Baumsteiger and Peter Moyle In part I of our blog, we projected a bleak future for many freshwater fishes, especially in California. Some difficult decisions will need to be made to prevent extinctions or to verify them.  However … Continue reading →

Facing extinction: California fishes

California WaterBlog - April 30, 2017 - 8:00pm
by Peter Moyle and Jason Baumsteiger At least two species of California fishes appear to be facing imminent extinction in the wild: delta smelt and winter-run Chinook salmon.  These species could join about 57 other North American fishes declared extinct. … Continue reading →

GRA’s Contemporary Groundwater Issues Council weighs in on BMPs for Groundwater Sustainability Plans

California WaterBlog - April 23, 2017 - 8:00pm
by Thomas Harter, Vicki Kretsinger Grabert, Reid Bryson, and Tim Parker On May 26, 2016, eight days after the California Water Commission voted to approve emergency regulations for Groundwater Sustainability Plans, the Groundwater Resources Association (GRA) held the sixth annual workshop of … Continue reading →

Accounting for Water in the San Joaquin Valley

California WaterBlog - April 16, 2017 - 8:04pm
by Brad Arnold1, Alvar Escriva-Bou1,2, Jay Lund1, and Ellen Hanak2 University of California – Davis, Center for Watershed Sciences Public Policy Institute of California Accounting for water supplies and uses is fundamental to good water management, but it is often … Continue reading →

California’s drought and floods are over and just beginning

California WaterBlog - April 9, 2017 - 8:03pm
By Jay Lund  California is a land of extremes – where preparing for extremes must be constant and eternal. The last six years demonstrated California’s precipitation extremes. From 2012-2015, California endured one of its driest years of record.  2016 was … Continue reading →