Save Our Salmon, No New Massive Diversions and Reservoirs in Northern California

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In early January, California’s Governor Gavin Newsom released his highly anticipated California Water Portfolio. Even though the portfolio discusses prioritizing restoration and water savings, it also prioritizes the three most controversial and environmentally destructive threats to California’s rivers; the Delta Tunnel project; The Sites reservoir project; and voluntary agreements for agriculture.

The portfolio even suggests accelerating environmental permitting for new  the Sites  Reservoir and diversions, despite the fact that fisheries in the areas targeted are facing extinctions and agencies have warned of potentially devastating fisheries impacts. Only two of the “listening sessions” for these meetings happened north of Sacramento and no hearings happened in Northwest or Northeast California, from which much of the water the state uses is diverted. Most California Tribes and counties of origin were not consulted on the portfolio. 

Less than a week after the release of the plan, the state opened the comment period for the new “Delta Conveyance Project” or Delta Tunnel (formally the Twin Tunnels) diversion proposal, showing that the Governor does not care what the people of California have to say about his portfolio. The one tunnel  project is a proposal to build a massive new water diversion in the Northern Bay Delta near where the Sacramento River enters. This is where the Delta’s water is the cleanest and it is an extremely important area to endangered and subsistence salmon and smelt species. 

The governor has also not followed through with his promise to sue the Trump administration for their new water plan and biological opinion. These Trump plans will most likely force many of California’s salmon species into extinction and decimate the fishing industry. California released a state alternative to this plan that also threatens California’s fisheries and drinking water quality by diverting more water.  The state again failed to value public opinion by only holding one daytime hearing in Sacramento on this water plan. 

The governor’s water portfolio supports spending taxpayer money on new privately owned reservoirs and canals, and water transfers that would mainly benefit large agricultural corporations and water brokers, such as Westlands Water District. This is despite the fact that the state has already committed over a billion dollars of tax paper money to building new privately owned reservoirs and new freshwater diversions. 

Make no mistake this Portfolio and new massive One Tunnel diversion are  modern day water grabs and are in line with the Trump administration’s attack on California’s environment. 

Orwellian language cannot save the salmon or our drinking water supplies. The governor is selling out the north state, the fishing industry, tribes, cities, and the environment to benefit wasteful agricultural water users. 

Help us fight the water Portfolio, State Water Plan, Delta Tunnel Proposal and Sites Reservoir. 

Water Is Life! 

Comments on the Water Portfolio can go to: Nancy Vogel, Director, Governor’s Water Portfolio Program, California Natural Resources Agency 1416 Ninth Street, Sacramento, CA 9581Or  input@waterresilience.ca.gov  


Delta Tunnel comments can go to: DeltaConveyanceScoping@water.ca.gov  or, Delta Conveyance Scoping Comments, Attn: Renee Rodriguez, Department of Water Resources, P.O. Box 942836, Sacramento, CA 94236

Public Scoping meetings for the Delta Tunnel are at : 

February 3, 2020, 1 p.m. – 3 p.m. California Environmental Protection Agency
Building, 1001 I Street, Sacramento

February 5, 2020, 6 p.m. – 8 p.m. Junipero Serra State Building, 320 West
Fourth Street, Los Angeles

February 10, 2020, 6 p.m. – 8 p.m. Jean Harvie Community Center, 14273
River Road, Walnut Grove

February 12, 2020, 6 p.m. – 8 p.m. Santa Clara Valley Water District Board
Room, 5750 Almaden Expressway, San Jose

February 13, 2020, 6 p.m. – 8 p.m. San Joaquin Council of Governments
Board Room, 555 Weber Avenue, Stockton

 February 19, 2020, 6 p.m. – 8 p.m. Clarksburg Middle School Auditorium,
52870 Netherlands Road, Clarksburg

February 20, 2020, 6 p.m. – 8 p.m. Brentwood Community Center Conference
Room, 35 Oak Street, Brentwood


Anyone interested in more information concerning the EIR process, or anyone who hasinformation concerning the study or suggestions as to significant issues, should contact Marcus Yee at (916) 651-6736. 

Despite impacts to the Sacramento watershed and Trinity and Klamath River watersheds there are no hearings in Northern California. Call and ask for some! Travel assistance is available for Tribal members and low income subsistence fishermen who have to travel to get to a meeting. 

For more information go to Save California Salmon on Facebook or Californiasalmon.org or contact regina@californiasalmon.org.