Timing is Everything

Timing is Everything.

NRDC’s Doug Obegi wrote in a recent blog that we’ve captured and diverted too much water in the state’s reservoirs in January. He claims that “prevailing science” indicates that we shouldn’t be diverting more than 20 percent of unimpaired flows but he doesn’t tell us what science that is. A link in his blog goes to an opinion piece that doesn’t identify the science either.

Isn’t the water that was stored in January the same water that Doug will argue later in the year is water that we should be keeping in storage for cold-water salmon flows? I bet it is.

Isn’t the water that was stored in January the same water that Doug will argue later in the year is water that we should be keeping in storage for cold-water salmon flows? I bet it is.

In November the Chico Enterprise Record reported on an NRDC lawsuit against the Bureau of Reclamation and Sacramento River Settlement Contractors over water supply management (http://www.chicoer.com/article/NA/20151111/NEWS/151119941). The article quotes Doug on the subject of storing water for salmon.

This year the amount of cold water in Lake Shasta ran out — Doug Obegi

“This year the amount of cold water in Lake Shasta ran out, [Doug] Obegi said,” according to the paper. The story also reported that water users made an additional 440,000 acre-feet of water available for salmon by delaying deliveries to farms.

What would conditions be like if we weren’t capturing water now so it is available later in the year for multiple benefits, like fish and farms and communities? The public voted 2-1 in favor of new storage projects when they passed Proposition One, the Governor’s water bond. We think that capturing and storing water while conditions are wet is exactly what water managers ought to be doing and apparently so does the majority of California.

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