Apr 12, 2018
Re: Massive Delta tunnels project took a giant step forward – here’s what you need to know
It hard to know where to begin with all the factual problems with this article. Here are a few corrections:
-The Delta is largely laid out the same as it was prior to reclamation in terms of the locations of the rivers and sloughs. What has changed is there are now dry islands, rather than marsh. But the natural channels are in the same basic locations.
- The tunnels would not get rid of reverse flow problems in the south Delta when the south pumps are still running, which is contemplated about half the time under the Tunnels plan. In addiiton, the new intakes would cause reverse flows on the Sacramento River just south of Sacramento, imperiling fish in a new area of the Delta. River levels would also decrease up to 1-2 feet at times due to the new massive diversions, reducing groundwater recharge and stranding local ag pumps.
-It is true that the export interests want Sacramento River water because of its better quality. Not mentioned is that water in the Delta that sustains farms and surrounding cities would become poorer in quality as a result of the diversions of freshwater from the Sacramento River, making local water supplies less reliable.
-As for the State Water Board, there are hearing dates scheduled now through June. Because there are two more evidentiary phases to Part 2 that are not yet complete, the hearings are unlikely to conclude in June. Additonal changes to the project could also necesitate a Part 3 of the hearing, so the particpants can respond to the current version of the project, which keeps changing.
The MWD decision, along with DWR's earlier approvals, are a declaration of war on the Delta and our region's environment and will be the subject of intense litigation until DWR and MWD choose to instead pursue sustainable solutions with widespread support.