On 16 September 2015 the Environmental Water Caucus, a coalition of groups including CSPA, submitted a letter to Sally Jewell , Secretary of the Interior, detailing the many problems of the proposed California Delta Water Tunnel Project and urging the Secretary to show bold leadership by rejecting the proposed Delta Tunnels.
Among the many problems mentioned, the proposed tunnels would have devastating impacts on the Delta ecosystem and inhibit the Department of the Interior’s ability to comply with the Clean Water Act, Endangered Species Act, Fish and Wildlife Coordination Act and to meet trust obligations to Native Americans. Numerous agencies, including the Fish and Wildlife Service, US Geological Survey, National Academy of Sciences, National Marine Fisheries Service, and US Environmental Protection Agency, have identified serious and potentially catastrophic issues with the proposed project.
Despite these problems, state and federal officials plan to have the Delta Water Tunnels project Record of Decision ready for the approval of the Secretory of the Interior by the end of 2015. In advance of the Secretary’s decision, the US Bureau of Reclamation and the California Department of Water Resources have already petitioned the State Water Board to modify their water rights to allow the Tunnels to proceed, and have requested permits from the Army Corps of Engineers to allow tunnel related construction.