The Environmental Water Caucus:
The Mission of the Environmental Water Caucus is to achieve comprehensive, sustainable water management solutions for all Californians. EWC and its members employ political, legal and economic strategies to restore ecological health, improve water quality and protect public trust values throughout the San Francisco Bay-Sacramento/San Joaquin Delta estuary and the Central Valley/Sierra Nevada watersheds.
The EWC was formed in 1991. Active members include most groups advocating for equitable and sustainable California water resource use. The major policies advocated by the EWC are described in the "Strategic Goals and Recommended Actions" of the EWC California Water Solutions Now report and in the Actions described in the Responsible Exports Plan.The EWC opposes Senator Feinstein's and Representative McCarthy's so-called "Federal Drought Bill" introduced as S. 2198.
The proposed legislation which has not been released to the public could impact important environmental protections including clean water provisions and would harm our rural, agricultural, fishing, and tribal communities. As we understand it, the legislation is designed to benefit special interests that would circumvent protections in numerous federal laws. See our letter to Senator Feinstein.
The EPA Blasts the Draft EIS for the Bay Delta Conservation Plan
The Environmental Protection Agency's 8/26/2014 comment letter on the Draft Environmental Impact Statement for the Bay Delta Conservation Plan found that the plan could violate the federal Clean Water Act and increase harm to endangered fish species.
EWC Calls BDCP Plan for the Twin Tunnels Misleading and Disingenuous
The EWC characterizes the Bay Delta Conservation Plan (BDCP) and EIR/EIS which have been seven years in the making, as contrary to law, full of cherry-picked science and biased analysis, lacking in assurances for Delta ecosystem and fish recovery, and without a required plan for financing the $50 to $60 billion costs, a good share of which will be shifted to the public taxpayer. In our press release and comment letter, and supplemental comments, the EWC tells BDCP that it is not a legal document and that the plan cannot go forward.
Support for Wild & Scenic River Status For the Mokelumne River
The EWC and its affiliated organizations are supporting SB 1199 by state Senator Loni Hancock to grant 37 miles of the Mokelumne River state Wild & Scenic status. See the EWC support letter.
Censored BDCP Comment Letters
Friends of the River (FoR) was able to obtain the Bay Delta Conservation Plan (BDCP) public comments that the BDCP is no longer posting on their web site. Those letters are now posted at FoR's web site.
Dams are NOT the Answer to Drought
See the latest on real drought responses from the EWC. And take a look at the EWC's Drought Response Principles and Actions.
Opposition to HR 3964
HR 3964, the Son of HR 1837, is worse than the original bill and definitely not a drought response. See the EWC press release, and opposition letter.
Shasta Resevoir Study is a Sham
The Bureau of Reclamation has published a plan to increase the storage capacity of Shasta Reservoir by raising the dam height 18.5 feet, according to their recently released Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS). The California Environmental Water Caucus finds the project to be a waste of the $1.2 billion cost. It would provide little additional water yield for an exorbitant price tag and would be a travesty for American taxpayers. See our comments submitted September 30, 2014, and the press release.
The Bay Delta Conservation Plan (BDCP) Is NOT A Good Deal for California
EWC has developed a presentation on our Responsible Exports Plan and why BDCP is not good for California or Southern California. We showed the presentation at the Southern California Water Dialog meeting in June 2013 at the Metropolitan Water District offices. The presentation was originally created by Restore the Delta.
EWC comments on the Inadequate State Water Board San Joaquin Flows Report
The Water Board's Substitute Environmental Document recommends flows for the San Joaquin River that are inadequate to protect the Public Trust. The document also leaves out the major contribution of the San Joaquin River flows from above the Merced River (Friant Dam), and the recommended flows degrade water quality in the South Delta.
Read our comments, and the attachment.
Coming Your Way: A Biased BDCP Benefit-Cost Analysis
Stacking the deck in favor of the tunnels seems to be the order of the day with this analysis. We warily advocated for a Benefit-Cost Analysis to be accomplished, but we didn't expect it to be this bad. See the EWC's critical comments sent on February 6, 2013 to the BDCP and their consultant.
EWC and EJCW Combine to Oppose Shasta Dam Raise
The EWC and the Environmental Justice Coalition for Water combined to create a sign on letter, supported by 35 organizations, opposing the latest Bureau of Reclamation proposal to raise Shasta Dam by 18.5 feet.
EWC Organizations Oppose Legislation Which Will Undermine the Phase Out of Once Through Cooling (OTC)
See the opposition letter.
Bay Delta Conservation Plan (BDCP)--An Enormous Mistake
Read the San Francisco Chronicle January 2013 Editorial by the EWC.
The EWC Alternative to the Bay Delta Conservation Plan
The Environmental Water Caucus has assembled the various recommendations we have made during the past year for the Delta Plan and combined them into a single alternative plan that we now refer to as the "Responsible Exports Plan". This Plan will continue to evolve as we learn more, and it will be the main thrust of our Delta Estuary actions for the future.
A Better Delta "Fix" Cost Estimate
The EWC has estimated the costs of proposed "improvements" to the Delta water delivery and eco-systems envisioned by the Bay Delta Conservation Plan (which includes transporting Sacramento River water around the Delta for export through a canal or tunnel capable of carrying 15,000 cubic feet/second) at 60 billion dollars. This figure is more than 3 times the current Bay Delta Conservation Plan's cost estimate for "fixing the Delta".
California Water Solutions Now
California Water Solutions Now, Third Edition, is a game-changing report published by a broad coalition of 27 fishing, public health, conservation, environmental justice, and tribal organizations. It includes comments related to the state water policy legislation that was passed in November 2009 as well as further discussions of water supply options.
The groups have released this report to inform the ongoing debate about the methods for supplying water to the state, particularly in light of the $11 billion water bond that is scheduled to appear on the 2012 state ballot. The report, in fact, proposes water delivery and ecosystem recovery actions that can be achieved in a more fiscally responsible and environmentally protective manner than the proposed bond measure.
California Water Solutions Now shows that, with real reforms, California can have a sustainable water future.
Para descargar una version en espanol del informe que trata los problemas y soluciones del agua en la comunidad Latina, pulse aqui.