“…provide an opportunity for gates to be open more at times when fish are not affected and in general to process requests as quickly as possible.” ~ Sen. Dianne Feinstein
The bill provide $300 million for water projects, but Feinstein admits it’s not going to solve all of California’s water problems.
“The estimate is that this could bring about some new water but not the sun, the moon and the stars, so it is not a big, broad bill.”
House Republicans passed legislation to ease environmental laws that restrict the flow of water in the San Joaquin Delta. It’s unclear if or when the Senate bill will be voted on but for it to become law it will need to be coupled with its House counterpart.
The drought intensified over the last week in the Western U.S. as the region swelters under a heatwave and firefighters battle major wildfires.
Dangerous fire weather conditions has prompted one federal agency to impose fire restrictions on public lands in northern California.
Mandatory statewide water conservation rules have ended in California. But Sacramento-area users conserved 22 percent in June, compared to June 2013.
California and federal agencies say a new strategy is needed to save the endangered Delta smelt.
California is in the fifth consecutive year of drought, but state water managers ended mandatory conservation rules. Local water suppliers now determine conservation rates, and some have low or no targets. A water expert says that's 'shortsighted.'