FROM Jeffrey Kightlinger
More Cuts in Southern California's Water Supply Governor Brown has called for a 25% reduction in water use in California's urban areas. Today, the Metropolitan Water District ordered a 15% cut in deliveries to 26 cities and water agencies. They account for about half the water used in the Southern part of the State. Jeff Kightlinger is the MWD's General Manager.
A Record Water Shortage and Red Flag Warnings Governor Brown has recognized this driest winter in California history by declaring a drought emergency . The Sierra snowpack is at 15% of its annual average, and that could leave Central Valley farmers with no allocations from water districts at all. Last week's Colby Fire above Glendora is a prime example of what dry winter weather means for fire danger and, by extension, air quality.
Governor Brown’s Massive Water Project In 1982, then-Governor Jerry Brown proposed a canal to divert Northern California water around the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta and bring it to Southern California—irrigating the nation’s bread-basket along the way. Voters turned it down, but Brown’s back again, backed by the Obama Administration with a new plan worth 24 billion dollars. Even some Democrats think it’s a bad idea, and there’s no guarantee it would work even if it could be paid for. But with US Interior Secretary Ken Salazar at his side, Governor Brown today proposed a new version of the old idea. For 24 billion dollars, massive tunnels would take water from Northern California, pump it under the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta, then use it to irrigate big farms in the Central Valley on its way to residential customers in Los Angeles and San Diego. Brown called it, “another test of whether we can govern ourselves…”
Will the Water Wars Never End? Cutbacks in urban water use, penalties for agricultural diversions, new dams and, possibly, a Peripheral Canal around the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta. These are some of the provisions of a massive water plan unveiled yesterday after months of negotiations behind closed doors. Democratic leaders in the Assembly and Senate said they had the momentum for a vote before the end of this week, but even supporters don't agree on just what the measure would really do.
Will Californians Ever Agree about Water? Both the population and the economy of California are growing, but the amount of available water stays the same — unless it declines, as it's doing now in the worst drought in 20 years. For 30 years, governors and legislators have tried to increase storage and manage delivery for both urban and agricultural users at the same time protecting complex ecosystems. Last week, the latest effort collapsed into partisan wrangling despite what one Senator called "a decade's worth of progress in just a few weeks."
MWD Warns of Water Cuts and Higher Rates The Metropolitan Water District serves 18 million people in Southern California. It provides 82% of Santa Monica’s water supply; 60% for Pasadena and 50% for Burbank. Even Los Angeles, which has its own Department of Water and Power , gets 34% its water from the MWD.
Is it Time to Dump your Lawn? For a lot of Southern Californians, 'going green' means having as big a lawn as possible. In this arid climate, dusty brown is the natural color, and it takes a lot of water to transform that to green. Altogether, outdoor landscaping takes up about a third of the water used by the average family. This has been a year of record low rainfall, and more dry years are projected for the foreseeable future. The Metropolitan Water District has helped to set up the Native Plant Garden Hotline, providing expertise on sustainable gardens and advice on how to remove and replace a lawn.
Replacing Obamacare: Now you see it… now you don’t As the Senate deliberates replacing Obmacare, health coverage for millions of people is at stake. There've been no public hearings, and a draft measure won't be made public. Is the House version so unpopular that that Senate is hiding a version that looks much the same?
The longest US war: Will Trump send more troops to Afghanistan? The Trump White House is divided over the Pentagon's request for more troops in Afghanistan—where the US has been fighting for the past 16 years. Is there a formula -- either for "victory" or a political settlement? Is there an end in sight for America's longest war?
Who's to blame for the opioid crisis? Some of the lawyers who took on Big Tobacco are now going after Big Pharma. It’s all about the deadly epidemic of opioid use. Are the drug companies to blame? What about the users? Later, on today’s Talking Point: making sense of Britain’s upset election.