On December 1, 2016, CSPA provided testimony before the State Water Resources Control Board in the hearing on the proposed Delta tunnels, known inaccurately as the “California WaterFix.” CSPA joined in presenting testimony with witnesses from the California Water Impact Network and AquAlliance.
The hearing specifically addresses, in the current phase, whether allowing the State Water Project and the Central Valley Project to construct three new points of diversion in the north Delta would injure legal users of water.
Attorney Michael Jackson represented all three organizations and made a half hour opening statement.
Chris Shutes testified for CSPA that the proposed change would in effect create a new, mega-water right for the Department of Water Resources and the Bureau of Reclamation, and would lead these agencies to operate project reservoirs more aggressively. This would increase the risk that the projects would run out of water for multiple uses, including water deliveries.
Tom Cannon testified that the standard that project proponents proposed to meet – compliance with the existing Delta flow and water quality standards – is likely to change and in any case does not prove that the project won’t injure legal users of water.
Dr. G. Fred Lee testified that diverting water north of the Delta would reduce the inflow of water from the Sacramento River, increasing the pollutant load in the Delta.
Bill Jennings testified that the proponents had not shown the effects of their project on CSPA’s land at Collinsville, that the project would degrade Delta water quality, and that the proponents’ testimony contained numerous flaws.
A video of the testimony of CSPA and its associates, including cross-examination, is available at http://www.waterboards.ca.gov/board_info/media/dec2016/cal_waterfix_hearing120116.shtml
While the presentation of testimony and cross-examination lasted one day, this one day represents many weeks of preparation and monitoring of the proceeding. CSPA’s experts in this process are largely, to date, unpaid for this enormous effort. Please consider an end-of-year donation to help CSPA beat the tunnels.