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Enviros Get 86% of Delta Water and Want Even More!

If 25.4 million acre feet out of 29.6 million acre feet flowed through the Delta and out to sea

Aug 02, 2011


Families Protecting The Valley Newsletter Tell Your Friends about Families Protecting The Valley

AUGUST 2 2011

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Board of Directors

Denis Prosperi
Chester Andrew
Bob Smittcamp
Russ Waymire
John "Dusty" Giacone
Joe Marchini
Mark Watte
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Piedad Ayala
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Jim Walls

Enviros Get 86% of Delta Water and Want Even More!  Look at the Facts.

Enviros want another 850,000 acre feet of water.  They say it's for the health of the Delta.  We want to show you some numbers that back up why we disagree with enviros about their latest water grab from farmers and residents in Southern Californian.  The chart below shows that from December 1, 2010 through July 28th 29.6 million acre feet of water flowed into the Delta.  Of that, 25.4 million acre feet flowed through the Delta and out to sea.  You always hear enviros saying farmers use 80% of California's water, apparently thinking if they say it enough people will believe them.  Maybe it's the new math.  Here's the real math:  If 25.4 million acre feet out of 29.6 million acre feet flowed through the Delta and out to sea, it means 86% of Delta water is not being used by humans or farms.  The absurd situation is that with all this water being flushed to the ocean, the drinking water supply for 25 million people and farms who pay for 100% of their state water allocation are only receiving 80% of the contracted water they pay for.  And the politicians wonder why unemployment is high and food consumers wonder why there are food shortages and higher food costs.  Here's the answer...connect the dots, folks.    

So, why do the enviros want another 850,000 acre feet after already getting 25.4 million acre feet?  They say in the article below that they hope to push encroaching salt water back to a point that is about 46 miles from the Golden Gate Bridge.  In other words, 25.4 million acre feet of water wasn't enough to push it back, so now they need another 850,000 acre feet.  As you may remember from stories this past winter and spring, we have to let water go out to sea because there aren't enough reservoirs to store it.  The extra water enviros want now is water that's in storage and would be lost to farmers and people forever if they win in their federal court lawsuit.  

So, enviros have done everything they can to stop the building of more reservoirs for storage, meaning we've had to let excess water flow to the sea.  And now, the water we've been able to store is in their sights.  Like we said in the title of this newsletter, enviros already get 86% of the water and now they want even more, but their constant complaint is that farmers are the ones using too much. 

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Delta debate back before Fresno federal judge

By John Ellis / The Fresno Bee

Even in this, the wettest of years, the battle over endangered fish in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta rages.

The latest dispute centers on a plan by federal officials to increase water releases from Northern California reservoirs that eventually flow into the delta, where they hope to push encroaching salt water back to a point that is about 46 miles from the Golden Gate Bridge.

Four days of hearings began Tuesday before U.S. District Judge Oliver W. Wanger in Fresno, with water users seeking an injunction to stop the water releases.

The hearing will wrap up Friday. It is unknown whether Wanger will issue an immediate ruling.

Federal officials – supported by environmentalists – hope that reducing salt in a bigger stretch of the delta will help the threatened delta smelt. The action is part of a plan for the smelt known as a biological opinion.

But urban and agricultural water users that depend on the delta point out that Wanger has already invalidated the biological opinion, and in doing so specifically cited the fall water release as an area that needed reworking by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

Wanger's 225-page decision found that while delta pumping hurt the smelt, the restrictions that were set up to protect the fish were not justified. But in May, Wanger gave the federal government until December 2013 to rework the biological opinion, and left the existing plan in place while the new one is being written.

Court documents quote John Leahigh of the California Department of Water Resources as saying the proposed action will cut 850,000 acre feet of water deliveries to the State Water Project.

That, in turn, will cut State Water Project water allocations this year by 10% – about 410,000 acre feet – plus an additional 10% next year, state officials say.

Federal Central Valley Project water deliveries to the Westlands Water District and others will not suffer comparable reductions, court documents say, but could adversely affect water deliveries if conditions through the remainder of this year are "sufficiently dry."

Environmentalists, however, are "puzzled as to why the water contractors keep trying to stop fish protections in this wet year," said Kate Poole, an attorney with the Natural Resources Defense Council. "We're on target this year to export more water than ever before from the delta."

She cites water users' court filings that the proposed fall water releases won't hurt CVP supplies this year, and that there is a greater than 50% chance that it won't affect supplies next year.

Environmentalists also say state water allocation won't change this year, even if the fall action is taken, and that it is better than 50-50 that any reduction in the State Water Project's Lake
Oroville for the increased fall water releases will be made up over the winter and spring.



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