More dams and less review

Now that the state was able to install the False River Dam without due process, someone seems to think there’s a window open.

Two Announcement today from Mary Piepho’s Office (Contra Costa County Supervisor):

Additional Water Storage Facilities Proposed
An amendment to the FY2016 Energy and Water Appropriations Bill instructs the Bureau of Reclamation to finish and submit feasibility studies for three dam expansion projects and two dam creation proposals by specific deadlines.

Proposed by Congressman David Valadao (CA-21), the amendment requires a timeline for completion, draft, environmental impact statement, and final environmental impact statement, and a Record of Decision to be completed for the Shasta expansion and Temperance Flat dam by December 31, 2015; the Los Vaqueros expansion and Sites dam by November 30, 2016; and the San Luis dam expansion by December 31, 2017. The amendment passed the Appropriations Committee on Wednesday and will proceed next to the Floor for consideration:

Chipping Away at CEQA
Another bill, AB 311, a bill intended to speed up the environmental review process for new water storage facilities by making changes to the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA), passed to the Committee on Natural Resources. State Assemblymember Kristin Olsen (R-Modesto), a co-author on the bill, says the bill addressees “abuse” within the environmental review process, but David Pettit of the Natural Resources Defense Counsil refers to the bill as “chipping away at CEQA”

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