No one is ever blamed or held accountable for mistakes or policies that don't work.
We're looking over the report by an independent team of experts on what went wrong at Oroville when almost 200,000 people had to be evacuated in fear of a dam failure. There's a lot to unpack but it's difficult to overlook phrases like 'overconfident', 'complacent', 'lax inspections' and 'lazy repairs'. The San Francisco Chronicle reports "The 584-page document describes a culture of complacency, overconfidence and insularity at the Department of Water Resources that allowed errors to compound earlier errors, dating back all the way to the dam’s construction in the 1960s."
None of this is surprising to us as we see the same kind of management of water allotment year after year. Words like overconfident and complacent ring true to us. Year after year water is divvied out according to environmental theory and if nothing works according to plan they just do it again with no accountability. Will there be accountability with regard to Oroville mistakes. "Although the authors say state managers had numerous opportunities to prevent spillway problems, they don’t blame any individual." Of course not. No one is ever blamed or held accountable for mistakes or policies that don't work.
What will be done? According to John France who led the investigating team, “Rather than trying to find somebody to blame and point at, we believe the needs of society are better served to find out the situation and learn from it.”
The problem with the annual mistakes of water allocation is that there is never a dam failure which gets everyone's attention. There's only farming failure, which no one in California's political leadership seems to care about.