Posted by: Jan | December 7, 2018

Delta Tunnel Project has been put on-hold!

THIS JUST IN! Today the California Department of Water Resources (DWR) withdrew their request to the Delta Stewardship Council to certify that the Delta Tunnels (California WaterFix) is “consistent” with the Delta Plan! This is big. It means that the Water Board cannot approve the Permit for the tunnels to begin hence the tunnels are not allowed to begin.

DWR to DSC WaterFix Consistency Certification 12.7.18 copy.png

This is due in large part to the outstanding work done by Save the California Delta Alliance’s Legal Council, Michael Brodsky, and others who pushed back and testified about (1) the fact that the Delta Tunnels could not possibly reduce reliance on the Delta and reduce water exports (as required by the Delta Plan) and (2) the 10+ year construction phase of the project was so horrendous regarding the damage and impact on Delta communities, farming, and boating a recreation – all areas that the Delta Plan was committed to protecting – that the Tunnels could not possibly be allowed go forward.

The wishy-washy wording below from the DWR still claims that request of the filing for Consistency was “appropriate based on the thorough record that had been prepared” and that the report prepared for the tunnels “more than adequately supports the findings that WaterFix is consistent with the Delta Plan…”, they only say that because there are “unresolved issues related to the interpretation of the requirements of the Delta Reform Act and Delta Plan” they are withdrawing at this time.

“WRONG,” we firmly say. It was not due to any “interpretation” of requirements. Stopping the plan was necessary due to the total irresponsibility of the DWR in choosing a tunnel route through the Delta instead of around the Delta. Many of the issues raised were because DWR chose the “cheapest, shortest” route instead of the only potentially acceptable route, the Eastern route, around the Delta. By planning a huge construction project through the Delta instead of around it, the project would have gridlocked all of the rural Delta highways. Their project would shut down traffic coming to/from the Delta, blocking boaters from marinas, blocking Delta farmers trying to get their produce to market. Construction trucks rumbling through quaint legacy towns like Locke would have literally shook Locke’s 150 year old walls down. The barge traffic flooding the waterways would have made boating and recreation impossible whereas the Delta Plan says boating a recreation is an important feature of the Delta, to be protected. The irresponsible choice of the through-Delta route was a no-starter from the beginning.

Adding to that, DWR’s slipshod management and controls on the project, their “adaptive management” plan nearly insured that the northern pumps would remove more water than the environment could afford to lose, hence further impacting the environmental and water quality damage now being done to the Delta.

So while we applaud that the DWR has been forced to withdraw their filing for consistency, we are not convinced that they understand at all what the real issues are:
(1) They chose the wrong route. If they’d chosen the Eastern Route, there may have been some room for discussion; and
(2) They never put in enough controls to insure that they would not continue to destroy the water quality (as they have done in past years) or that the tunnels would not have made things worse.

So we are happy today for one battle in the skirmish being won. But we aren’t done yet.

We will not be planning a bus to Sacramento December 20-21 for the DWR meetings since the appeals process has been put on hold. We still remain concerned about the riders and the WIIN Act extension being discussed in congress, pushed by Brown and Feinstein. There is still work to be done.

We appreciate any donations we receive for our year-end fundraising drive. If you can donate, please go to http://www.NoDeltaGates.com and push on the “Donate” button on the right side or send checks made out to “STCDA” to STCDA, PO Box 1760, Discovery Bay, CA 94505.

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Posted by: Jan | December 5, 2018

Important Meeting Dec 20

4-ArrivingByBus

GET ON THE BUS!

December 20-21, 2018 – The Delta Stewardship Council votes whether the tunnels are “Consistent” with the Delta Plan.
Starts at 9:00 am Thursday Dec 20
Official Notice
Location: City of West Sacramento Civic Center Galleria
1110 West Capitol Avenue
West Sacramento, CA 95691

Email stcda@nodeltagates.com as soon as possible so we can get a count and see if we have enough for a bus.

Posted by: Jan | December 5, 2018

Write your Senators – Stop the WIIN Act Rider

IN ADDITION TO THE SAN FRANCISCO DEMONSTRATION, EVERYONE PLEASE WRITE TO SENATOR KAMELA HARRIS AND ASK HER TO VOTE “NO” ON THE WIIN ACT RIDER AND ASK HER TO TALK TO SENATOR FEINSTEIN ABOUT FEINSTEIN’s ATROCIOUS ROLE IN THIS BOONDOGGLE

CONTACT KAMELA HARRIS AT: https://www.harris.senate.gov/contact/email

Here’s what I wrote:

Please do everything you can to stop the WIIN Act extension.

Shame on Gov. Jerry Brown and U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein.
Six years ago, at Sen. Feinstein’s urging, one of the world’s most prestigious scientific organizations, the National Academy of Sciences, studied the health of the Delta. The academy and every scientific report conducted about Delta Flow Requirements concludes that the best way to preserve the Delta’s ecosystem is to send more water, not less, through it and out to San Francisco Bay, not shipping the water south.

Delta citizens have spent years testifying about the real issues with the Delta tunnels – the horrendous 10+ year construction project and the devastating environmental effects from sending water around the Delta instead of through it – and our efforts are close to paying off. BUT NOW THIS! Just as two state agencies are about act to protect the environmental health of the Delta, the governor and Sen. Feinstein are trying to undermine them.

The drought is over. The WIIN Act extension is just the means for Brown and Feinstein to force their will on the state. In addition, the extension is designed as a rider to the federal appropriations bill, so it won’t get the committee scrutiny a bill of such magnitude deserves. This is bad politics.

You are our last hope for saving our Delta communities and the Delta environment. Reject the rider. It is unacceptable for Brown and Feinstein to continue to ignore the science in order to help the pocketbooks of the Corporate almond and pistachio growers and L.A. developers.

Also email Sen. Feinstein and express your disappointment in her for abandoning the scientific evidence that taking water around the Delta will not help it. And complain about the project’s complete failure to protect the Delta Communities which instead will be destroyed by 10+ years of construction through the heart of the Delta.

Posted by: Jan | December 5, 2018

Protest at Feinstein’s SF Office

Just when we are making good progress from our years of testifying about the real issues with the Delta tunnels – the horrendous 10+ year construction project and the devastating environmental effects from sending water around the Delta instead of through it – our efforts are close to paying off. BUT NOW THIS!

Jerry Brown and Diane Feinstein are colluding to make an end-around all of our efforts and bypass the state agencies whose charter is to protect the Delta. At issue is the federal WINN (Water Infrastructure Improvements for the Nation) Act, which was originally designed as a short-term fix to send more Delta water south during California’s historic drought. It is scheduled to expire in 2021. The WIIN Act extension reportedly comes with Trump administration financial support for the Delta twin tunnels!

A PROTEST IS PLANNED FOR TOMORROW, DECEMBER 6, AT 11:00 A.M. IN FRONT OF DIANE FEINSTEIN’S SAN FRANCISCO OFFICE

ORGANIZED BY: Food and Water Watch, Restore the Delta

WHAT: Demonstration on street in front of Senator Dianne Feinstein’s SF Office calling on her to drop support for WIIN Act

WHERE: 1 Post St #2450, San Francisco, CA 94104

WHEN: Thursday, December 6, 2018 11:00 am

THEY ARE HOPING TO HAVE T.V. CAMERAS FILM THE EVENT SO ANYONE WHO CAN SHOW UP, THAT WOULD BE GREAT! PLEASE FORWARD THIS PLEA TO ANY OF YOUR FRIENDS AND ASSOCIATES WHO LIVE IN THE SAN FRANCISCO AREA AND COULD SHOW UP. SEND TO MARINAS, BOATERS, COMMERCIAL SALMON FISHERMEN – ANYONE WHO WILL BE AFFECTED IF THE TUNNELS GO THROUGH.

If you have questions or want more information, contact Barbara Barrigan-Parrilla, Restore the Delta

For more information, read the Editorial in the S.J. Mercury for more information: https://www.mercurynews.com/2018/12/04/editorial-delta/
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Tweet to @SenFeinstein:

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Posted by: Jan | November 21, 2018

Happy Thanksgiving from STCDA!

Happy Thanksgiving from STCDA!

I feel so lucky to have such wonderful, supportive members in the battle to save the Delta, a talented Board, and a great lawyer fighting for us!

We hope your Thanksgiving holiday is happy!

Happy-Thanksgiving

Nov 15&16, 2018 was the Delta Stewardship Council meeting to review their Staff’s findings about the WaterFix (Delta Tunnels).

Here is STCDA’s Briefing to the DSC. The plan was for the Council to vote in December whether to accept their staff’s recommendations to vote that the Delta Tunnels (WaterFix) is “Inconsistent” with the Delta Plan or not.

Randy Fiorini, DSC Chairman, suggested that the DWR withdraw their request that the WaterFix (Tunnel Project) is consistent with the Delta Plan (based on the Council Staff’s findings of inconsistency). That would mean that the DWR has to go back and rework the plan to address our issues of (1) Not reducing reliance on the Delta and (2) Not protecting the Delta as a Place during the construction phase.

Else DWR can take their chances that the DSC will vote in their favor in December.

Here’s details of the meeting from Maven’s Notebook.

Posted by: Jan | November 11, 2018

ALERT: Send Advice to Newsom

Great editorial by the Mercury News Editorial Board, How California can chart new approach to water woes.

Please join me and support them by sending a comment to “All in California” and/or twitter with hashtag #Advice4Gavin.

How? Tell Newsom you agree with the Mercury News Editorial. All in California link.

The Merc News advice? “Newsom should tell the State Water Board to stand firm in their push to increase the amount of water flowing through the San Joaquin River. It’s not only in the best interests of the state’s water future but also is consistent with his desire to resist President Trump’s effort to roll back crucial California environmental protections.”

But other great advice is also in the editorial. Read: How California can chart new approach to water woes.

ALSO, if you use Twitter, send the advice to Newsom by including the hashtag #Advice4Gavin, these tweets will be discussed by reporters and political leaders next Thursday Nov. 15 on California Nation.

Tweet to Newsom to “Stand Firm and support the Water Board in increasing the water flows through the Delta.” Remember to use the #Advice4Gavin hashtag.

Consider: What if Newsom borrowed a page from Brown’s climate change playbook, which called for a big move away from coal and oil in favor of renewable and green energy?

What if, instead of seeking to build more dams or find new ways to divert more water from California’s rivers, Newsom focused on how we can conserve water and create vast new supplies of renewable water through increased recycling, new treatment plants, additional gray water systems, efficient irrigation systems, large-scale storm water capture and more.

That’s leadership. And it would leave a far greater legacy than Brown’s ill-conceived Delta twin-tunnels plan, which would cost $19.9 billion but wouldn’t add a drop of new water to California’s limited supply.

Newsom can start by making his position clear at a pivotal State Water Resources Control Board meeting rescheduled for Dec. 11. The board is scheduled to vote on a proposal to substantially increase water flows in the San Joaquin River and its tributaries from as low as 10 to 20 percent to 40 percent of natural flows.

Here’s more about the Delta Stewardship Council staff recommending against the tunnels. Deirdre Des Jardins (California Water Research)’s testimony on sea level rise was also agreed with by the staff, North Delta C.A.R.E.S. (Barbara Daly) testified against the legacy town damage that would occur, STCDA on all of the impacts up and down the Delta, and other testimonies were presented during the two-day Delta Stewardship Meeting October 24 & 25. What a great effort by the groups battling the horrible Delta Tunnel Plan!

Here’s Dan Batcher’s writeup: https://fishsniffer.com/index.php/2018/11/08/stewardship-council-staff-finds-delta-tunnels-inconsistent-with-delta-plan/?fbclid=IwAR3vqU6Kmj0h87HMD7fordVeettamR4LySld4WRB9wZ-MvjKjTbPOtC9z-g

Next step – the Council will review the Staff Report in November 13 and then vote (in December). Fingers crossed that the declare the Tunnels inconsistent with the Delta Plan which will mean the tunnels cannot go forward as is.

That would be a major (and we hope final) blow for the tunnels. Although I imagine someone who wants the tunnels would then sue. Stay tuned . . .

Posted by: Jan | November 8, 2018

Michael Brodsky clearly explains

BrodskyDeltaPlan.png

Here’s a video from Discovery Bay Press prior to the Oct 24th meeting where Michael Brodsky explains why the Delta Tunnels are inconsistent with the Delta Plan.

Obviously, from our prior blog, the Delta Stewardship Council staff agreed.

https://www.thepress.net/multimedia/video-waterfix-hearings/youtube_6fe4813a-dd37-11e8-b122-0702245ebca2.html

We need to support Michael’s continued efforts. He is effective! He is winning! Please donate!



Or send a check made out to “STCDA” to:
STCDA
P.O. Box 1760
Discovery Bay, CA 94505

BIG NEWS!

The Delta Stewardship Staff Reports that WaterFix is not consistent with the Delta Plan!

The staff accepted two of Save the California Delta Alliance’s main arguments: that WaterFix is not consistent with D-1641 water quality requirements (meaning acceptable salinity in the Delta, particularly that it violates the Export to Inflow ratios); and that WaterFix does not respect local land uses because of impacts on recreation and legacy communities.

This is big!

The first argument about water quality is what many groups fighting the tunnels have been saying.

The second argument is one we (STCDA) have been pushing hard – working to protect recreation and boating throughout the Delta and protecting the legacy towns in the North Delta.

Telling testimony had been brought forward by Michael Brodsky about the horrible problems with 24×7 pile driving noise near the towns of Hood and Clarksburg – how students in elementary schools would not be able to hear their teachers speak . . . for up to 10 years. This is totally unacceptable. Construction trucks thundering through the historical Chinese town of Locke would absolutely cause those 100 plus year old buildings to crumble. These issues were reiterated by Barbara Daly representing North Delta C.A.R.E.S. California Water Research’s reams of analysis and study backed up the issues with the construction itself.

The STCDA case exposed how construction gridlock throughout the Delta roads and impossible barge traffic in all the waterways would drive tourists and boaters away – in total conflict with the Delta Plan that supposedly strives to protect the Delta as a Place for all of its wonderful aspects, including boating and recreation.

Right now the Delta Stewardship Council vote is likely tied 2 to 2. So with the staff recommending our way, this seems to be very good news.

Of course, in the lengthy battle, we have often hit what we thought was a “done deal” status to find water agencies pushing back and suing or other obstacles arising and hurdles to be overcome.

But, it is very good news and shows our arguments are on the right track. It shows your investments in STCDA are paying off and, if we can continue to fight any new challenges, we will win!

Thank you to our donors and supporters. We appreciate your support. Please continue to help us during our end-of-year fundraising.

A special thanks to Michael Brodsky and his hours and hours of pro-bono work to save our Delta !!!

Together we will win this thing! We will stop the Delta Tunnels!

Please donate!



Or send a check made out to “STCDA” to:
STCDA
P.O. Box 1760
Discovery Bay, CA 94505

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