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

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

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

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

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

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

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 →

Down the DRAIN: California gets a jump on Delta tunnels

April 1, 2017 - 12:30am
by Nan W. and Dunlay J. Frobish California took a step towards replumbing its archaic Delta water infrastructure by completing the first part of a contentious project. An intake for the first Delta tunnel was completed this fall, and with … Continue reading →

Pumping out the Inland Sea – Delta exports in a time of plenty

March 26, 2017 - 8:04pm
  By Jay Lund This is northern California’s wettest year of record, so far.  The Yolo Bypass has been flooded for most of this wet season, and is still flowing.  Are Delta water exports going to exceed the previous record … Continue reading →

Post-drought groundwater in California: Like the economy after a deep “recession,” recovery will be slow

March 19, 2017 - 8:00pm
by Thomas Harter The 2012-2016 drought has made many of us keenly aware of how “empty” our groundwater “reservoirs” have become. As the recent series of atmospheric rivers have left us with a massive snowpack, full surface water reservoirs (with … Continue reading →

Evading Dam-Nation to Build a Working Floodplain on the Cosumnes River

March 12, 2017 - 8:00pm
by Michelaina Johnson This winter’s barrage of rain storms has driven most Central Valley rivers to the point of near record-breaking flooding, and the Cosumnes River is no exception. On February 10th, the Cosumnes hit the second highest peak flow … Continue reading →

What do stream fish do during flood flows?

March 5, 2017 - 7:00pm
By Peter B. Moyle My local stream, Putah Creek, looks like a river these days.  Water is pouring down the Glory Hole of Lake Berryessa and rushing in muddy turmoil from the ‘dry’ creeks that are its main tributaries.   The … Continue reading →

California’s Floods of 2017, so far

February 26, 2017 - 7:16pm
by Jay Lund What a wild water month!  Floods, spillway damage, and levee failures!  Mass evacuations! And Donald Trump and Barack Obama are not even remotely to blame! Flood control and preparation are vitally important for California.  Now we remember. … Continue reading →

Yolo Bypass: the inland sea of Sacramento

February 20, 2017 - 7:00pm
By Megan Nguyen Land or Sea? The recent rains early this year brought much needed relief from the five-year drought in California. Reservoirs are full, mountains are covered with snow, and flood control structures are being used, some for the … Continue reading →

Reconciling conservation and human use in the Delta

February 12, 2017 - 7:00pm
By John Durand, Peter Moyle, and Amber Manfree  In a previous blog, we presented a Grand Scheme for habitat conservation in the North Delta Arc (the Arc). This follows up on our earlier broad vision for recreating a Delta more friendly … Continue reading →

California’s Wettest Drought? – 2017

February 5, 2017 - 7:20pm
By Jay Lund Wet.  After five years of drought, most of California finally has become wet.  The mountains are exceptionally wet and covered with snow.  The state’s reservoirs are fuller than their long term average (with a few exceptions).  Flood … Continue reading →

Episode 3: “Unraveling the Knot” Water Movement in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta – Managing Flows

January 29, 2017 - 7:00pm
By William Fleenor, Amber Manfree, and Megan Nguyen Delta water diversions have significant effects on flows and water quality within the Delta. Diversions can re-direct river flows and draw salt water inland from the sea, impacting water quality and the … Continue reading →

Episode 2: “Unraveling the Knot” Water Movement in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta – Tidal Forces

January 25, 2017 - 5:00am
By William Fleenor, Amber Manfree, and Megan Nguyen Tides are the biggest driver of Delta flows, and in Episode 2 we look at their impacts in different locations under a variety of inflow conditions.  Tides have a twice-daily cycle in … Continue reading →

Episode 1: “Unraveling the Knot” Water movement in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta

January 22, 2017 - 7:00pm
By Bill Fleenor, Amber Manfree, and Megan Nguyen In 2010, John DeGeorge of RMA, Inc used animated model results to illustrate specific flow and water quality issues in the Delta to the State Water Board. The Center for Watershed Sciences, … Continue reading →

Indicators of a drought ending in northern California

January 15, 2017 - 8:53pm
Jay Lund Droughts are common in California, a large, generally dry, and hydrologically complex place.  So it is hard to rely on a single index of the end or beginning of a drought.  A single storm is rarely enough to … Continue reading →

Tails of California’s Drought

January 10, 2017 - 9:39pm
by Jay Lund Storms are filling reservoirs, building snowpack, and flooding in ways not seen since the most recent California drought began in 2012.  The state’s reservoirs today contain 1.2 million acre-ft more water than the long-term average for this … Continue reading →