On 20 February 2014, in a letter to California Natural Resources Agency Secretary John Laird and Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell, CSPA requested that the agencies take urgent action to protect Delta smelt and longfin smelt during the present drought crisis. Present operations of the state and federal water projects are adversely affecting the survival and migration of these listed species during critical life stages.
Population abundance of Delta smelt and longfin smelt has already declined by 95.6% and 99.8% from 1967, when the State Water Project began water exports from the Delta, and the long-term viability of these species is seriously at risk. The letter presents several specific recommendations and requests future CSPA participation in the Smelt Working Group.
It follow a 27 January letter to the Secretaries of Commerce, Interior and California’s Natural Resource Agency requesting urgent drought action to protect the Central Valley’s beleaguered Chinook salmon populations. A joint meeting has been arranged between CSPA, Golden Gate Salmon Association, Pacific Coast Federation of Fishermen’s Association and the agencies to discuss specific emergency actions that can be taken this year to protect salmon.