Posts Tagged: conservation

Opinion

If CPUC eliminates ‘decoupling,’ water rates would rise

Sprinklers watering a field in Scotts Valley, Calif. (Photo: Michael Barajas, via Shutterstock)

As early as Aug. 6, the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) could vote to adopt a proposal that would eliminate a best-practice regulatory tool – known as decoupling – that currently removes the incentive of water suppliers to sell more water.

News

Conservation Corps missed warning signs before fatal van crash

Photo illustration by Quentin Lueninghoener, FairWarning.

Early on Feb. 2, 2016, a van carrying members of the California Conservation Corps paused at a stop sign on a country road near the Central Valley town of Reedley. Then the van rolled into the intersection, where it was broadsided by a 40-ton gravel truck and trailer, killing three corps members and leaving another with catastrophic brain and spinal injuries. The victims, 18 to 21 years old, all were recent recruits – two of them so new that they had yet to collect their first paycheck.

News

Amid rains, drought fears loom

A rain storm floats over California. (Photo: Serkan Senturk, via Shutterstock)

After a historically wet season last year, relatively little precipitation has fallen this year in California during two of the three historically wettest months. Officials are urging stricter water conservation and caution drier months ahead. After last week’s rains, the Sierra snowpack — a critical factor in water availability — climbed to just 39 percent of normal. More rain is coming, but the question remains: Will it be enough to block the impacts of a resumption of the drought?

News

Drought’s not over for everybody

Localized flooding on the American River near Folsom Dam. (Photo: David Greitzer

Most Californians are – finally – out of the drought, but the record-setting rains have not washed away emergency conditions for all residents. Gov. Jerry Brown’s April 7 executive order lifted the drought state of emergency for 54 of California’s 58 counties.

News

Drought’s back broken — or not?

A man shielded against the rain looks across L.A. from the Hollywood Hills. (Photo: Shutterstock)

Despite the torrential rains of the last few weeks, experts say it’s too early to tell whether California’s interminable drought is really over. It will be necessary to monitor rainfall through at least March to make an assessment.

News

Lawmaker backs executive director in Coastal Commission dispute

The coast at La Jolla. Photo: Dancestrokes)

A North Coast lawmaker has come to the defense of Charles Lester, the executive director of the California Coastal Commission who has come under fire from a number of commissioners seeking his ouster at the panel’s meeting next month in Moro Bay.

News

Drought emergency: The need for a biodiversity policy

Lake Oroville ravaged by drought. (Photo: State Department of Water Resources, 2014)

Analysis: California ecosystems are losing their resilience and their ability to sustain native plants and animals. In the past, even in droughts, there were natural refuges to sustain native species. Today, most of these ecosystems are changing rapidly from human impacts and many have deteriorated to critical condition. Refuges are scarce.

News

A torrid June, but water usage cut

A suburban home with a lawn that hasn't been watered in months. (Photo: Suzanne Tucker, via Shutterstock)

Despite the hottest June on record, Californians cut back on their water use statewide by by 27.3 percent statewide compared with June 2013, a reduction that exceeded the level ordered in the governor’s emergency drought regulations. The cut in usage amounted to more than 182,000 acre-feet of water, or about 59.4 billion gallons by urban water suppliers.

Opinion

A drought-fighting strategy: ‘All of the above’

Islands in the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta, an aerial view. The Delta is home to about half of California's drinking water. (Photo: Worldislandinfo.com

As part of the newly formed Californians for Water Security, we support moving forward with Governor Jerry Brown’s Bay Delta Conservation Plan (BDCP), a bold strategy to ensure our state is making the most of our limited water supplies. That’s why we are disappointed to see certain groups opposing the plan to build a modern water pipeline to fix California’s aging statewide water distribution infrastructure.

News

Despite drought, water conservation not a priority

Millerton Lake in Fresno County formed by the Friant Dam. Photo: K.J. Kolb

Californians in cities and towns across the state cut their water usage only slightly – 2.8 percent — during February compared with the same month in 2013, an indication that despite the severity of the drought, conservation is not taking hold. Felicia Marcus, the chair of the State Water Resources Control Board, said “the February results are very disturbing.”

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