The stated goal of the Bay Delta Conservation Plan is to restore the ecology of the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta and protect the water that supplies two-thirds of the state’s population and thousands of acres of Central Valley farms.
The plan and its corresponding 25,000 pages of environmental documents are now available online.
“This is a very significant milestone. After a whole lot of talk we’re finally at the public comment period so we take this very seriously," says Mark Cowin, director of the California Department of Water Resources. "We want the opportunity to hear what the public has to say, we’ll continue to further refine the plan.”
Cowin says the department has made several changes since the drafts earlier this year.
They include greater protection measures for the Sandhill Crane during construction of the tunnels, additional fish studies for the new water intakes along the Sacramento River, and setting up a $450-million fund to support the adaptive management process if additional water supply is needed.
But people who live in the Delta and some environmental groups say the changes are not an improvement.
"We added up how tall this plan would be if anybody would dare to print it out. It would be nine feet tall," says Osha Meserve, with the organization Local Agencies of the North Delta. "After all that work, all that money dumped into this hole, it still does not conserve species.”
More Delta Coverage
(AP) -- A state appellate court has ruled that California water officials cannot go onto private property for soil testing and other studies related to construction of two massive tunnels that would siphon water from the Sacramento River.
(AP) - A federal appeals court has largely upheld a 2008 plan that called for restrictions on water deliveries from California's Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta to protect a tiny, threatened fish.
(AP) -- California water officials are planning to temporarily dam three channels on the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta if California's drought persists.
California Governor Jerry Brown’s administration released environmental documents for the Bay Delta Conservation Plan today.