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Modernized Delta Conveyance

The Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta (Delta) is the hub of our state’s water delivery system and home to one of California’s most important ecosystems. But the current Delta Conveyance system no longer works. Aging dirt levees are all that protect our main source of water from catastrophic earthquakes, floods and rising sea levels. The environment is deteriorating and water deliveries are constrained by tightening regulations.

We need a modern system that can protect water supplies for people, the environment, farms and the California economy. We need improved Delta Conveyance.

TASK FORCE CHAIR:

Tom McCarthy
Kern County Water Agency

 

Your Voice is Needed!

California’s aging water infrastructure needs your help. Efforts to modernize the state’s water system relied upon by 27 million Californians are once again gaining momentum.

The state’s environmental review process for modernized Delta Conveyance is ongoing and expected to conclude in 2022. SCWC has a long history of supporting modernized Delta Conveyance. We led the coalition in support of the earlier version of this project, known as California WaterFix. In 2019, the California WaterFix project was revised and renamed. Today, the Delta Conveyance project consists of one pipeline instead of two, but the goal remains the same: improving water supply resiliency for Californians.

The Delta Conveyance project is a key action in Governor Newsom’s Water Resilience Portfolio, a comprehensive document accounting for the challenges and opportunities facing the state and its communities as we seek to secure every Californian’s right to water.

Latest Updates from the California Dept. of Water Resources
On June 18, 2020, the California Department of Water Resources (DWR) announced next steps to modernize its water infrastructure.
 
In a blog, DWR provided an update on its activities related to the Delta Conveyance project, a proposed tunnel to move water supplies underneath the fragile ecosystem of the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta. The state’s water supply system is aging, vulnerable and in desperate need of improvement to boost the state’s resilience from the impacts of climate change as well as the risk of earthquakes. The Delta Conveyance project is the solution to those problems.
 
Among the highlights in DWR’s blog:
  • More than 800 comments were received as part of the environmental review’s scoping period. These are being reviewed now and scoping report will be published in coming months. (You can read our letter of support and comments on scoping process HERE.)
  • DWR expects the draft environmental impact review report to be published in 2021 for public review and comment.
  • A path forward has been created for federal involvement through the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in the planning process.
 
Read the full blog here to learn more about DWR’s processes for meeting California Environmental Quality Act requirements, tribal consultations and engagement, environmental justice and disadvantaged communities engagement, engineering and design and more.
 
Biological Opinions Lawsuits

You may have read about a series of lawsuits regarding the operations of the State Water Project and the Central Valley Project. Together, the two water projects provide water to 29 million Californians and 3.3 million acres of farmland. Both projects export water from the same watershed, but today they operate under two different sets of rules because of state and federal disagreements. The federal and state governments have a long history of coordinating the operations of the State Water Project and the Central Valley Project and SCWC would like to see them return to that coordination. SCWC supports a science-based approach to determining how water flows and urges both parties to return to the negotiating table to work out voluntary agreements rather than pursuing litigation.

As the State of California, water contractors in California and the federal government take to the courts to resolve differences in how water is exported from the Central Valley Project and the State Water Project, SCWC has begun collecting relevant documents and updates on this page.

Learn More about Delta Conveyance

For more general information about efforts to improve water infrastructure so critical to our state, check out our Delta Conveyance Project resources and stay connected with us to stay updated on the project and opportunities for engagement. Subscribe to our newsletter to receive regular updates delivered directly to your email box.