ICYMI 5/2/21: Dying Delta, Gleick on Drought, Mormon Slough, Our Living Delta

Op-Ed: Newsom promises while the delta dies – Los Angeles Times 4/29/21
The West Coast’s most important estuary is dying, and Gov. Gavin Newsom has hastened its demise.
As he took office two years ago, Newsom promised to generate voluntary agreements among farmers, environmentalists and government officials on the rules for allocating water that flows through the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta. One year ago, in a CalMatters op-ed, he said again that agreements were the way forward to “protect, restore, and enhance … the Delta.”
Not only have no voluntary agreements emerged, but conditions in the delta have grown so dire that in March the National Marine Fisheries Service estimated that high water temperatures could kill 90% of endangered winter-run Chinook salmon in the Sacramento River this year.

From dust bowl to California drought: a climate scientist on the lessons we still haven’t learned – Peter Gleick interview, The Guardian 4/29/21
The last drought was a wake up call to the effects of climate change. For the first time, the public began to make the connection that humans were impacting the climate and the water cycle – affecting the intensity and severity of our droughts.
Since that drought, we have learned some lessons about improving water efficiency, and reducing waste. We had serious conversations about things like getting rid of grass lawns for example. But we still haven’t learned the fundamental message: that these are not accidental, strange dry periods. They’re increasingly the norm.

Rise Stockton Coalition Comments on Stockton Diamond Draft EIR
Regarding critical habitat for Central Valley steelhead and Chinook salmon…
The EIR adds that “although Mormon Slough does not currently support habitat for these species, Project activities in Mormon Slough have potential to affect its long-term restoration potential for use by these species.” This analysis is incomplete, short sighted and goes against the goals of the Central Valley Improvement Project for doubling salmon numbers in Central Valley rivers and the San Francisco Bay-Delta Estuary….
Any project that eliminates the community’s ability to restore such physical habitat for both fisheries and for the use of area residents is a direct negative impact on the public trust because it impedes the public’s right to fishing, to recreation, and to access of America’s waterways. Mormon Slough for decades has been utilized as a publicly subsidized pollution pond for Stockton industries, rather than as the public trust resource that it is under California’s public trust doctrine.

Join us on Friday June 4th, 2021 at 6 PM for Our Living Delta: An Online Benefit for Restore the Delta!
This benefit is so important because it is for the recovery for our organization and will support the work that we are doing for the estuary. At it, you will hear directly from people we work with on the ground about what is it we are accomplishing at Restore the Delta, what our future goals are, and how we want to bring about improvements for the estuary. We have equipment that we have to acquire and funding needed for additional staff, so that we can meet our goals and start working on water quality issues at a deeper level.   We will have online auction items, prizes for donations, Delta music, Delta art, visits with tomorrow’s leaders, and more. We’re even going to have online wine tasting! This is the best way we can share with you the work that we are doing while keeping our community safe as we begin to recover in the Delta and in California.
Register and donate here today.

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