VIDEO: Forces assemble to fight governor’s Peripheral Canal
July 12, 2012
• Mustering public opinion
• ‘There are a lot of people willing to go to the mat to fight for this estuary’
When California Gov. Jerry Brown announces his plans on or about July 25 to build a $51 billion canal around or a tunnel system beneath the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta, the news is expected to be greeted with a wave of organized opposition.
Restore the Delta, a coalition of farming, urban, business and environmental groups, says it is ready with not just arguments against the massive project, but a plan to unite the state in rejecting it, just as Californians did the first time Mr. Brown was governor in the mid 1980s and he pushed for a peripheral canal.
The canal/tunnel plan would siphon off much of the fresh water from the Sacramento River before ti could flow into the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta and ship it to the State Water Project and Central Valley Project pumps at Tracy to be sent to farmers on the west side of the San Joaquin Valley and to Los Angeles.
This time, though, the governor’s opposition will have a multi-media approach, including a 45-minute documentary, produced by Restore the Delta and other groups.
Watch the CVBT interview with Restore the Delta Executive Director Barbara Barrigan-Parrilla here:
“It’s going to be fought in the halls of public opinion,” says Bill Jennings, executive director of the California Sportfishing Protection Alliance. “It’s a fight to save the Delta.”
Watch the CVBT interview with California Sportfishing Protection Alliance executive director Bill Jennings here:
Mr. Jennings says the problem on one level is a simple one that goes back a century or more: More water has been allocated than there is to divvy up.
“We’re looking at a biological meltdown” if the governor’s plan ever comes to fruition, says Mr. Jennings. He says the estuary, the largest on the west coast of the Americas, could not survive if the Sacramento River has so much water diverted.
“At some point this state is going to have to live within its means,” he says. “We can’t squander water.”
Comments on this story
Mike Wade 7/12/12 10:08 AM
The planned canal/tunnel for the Delta that is expected to be announced by the Governor offers benefits to two-thirds of California's population as well as reliable water supplies to farmers who grow the food we buy at the grocery store. Ongoing efforts of the BDCP and the Delta Stewardship Council are focused on providing a reliable water supply and an improved Delta ecosystem, co-equal goals set by the legislature in 2009. A project that provides food for families, water for California's economy and a structured, comprehensive overhaul of the Delta ecosystem is a good plan for the future.
California Farm Water Coalition
Tony St Amant 7/12/12 1:32 PM
Mr. Wade's view that "the BDCP and the Delta Stewardship Council are focused on" the co-equal goals of a reliable water supply and an improved Delta ecosystem is optimistically positive to a fault.
The reality is that the BDCP and DSC are paralyzed by the co-equal goals of a reliable water supply and an improved Delta ecosystem.
The skunk in the wood pile is the reality that the only way to improve the Delta ecosystem and provide a reliable water supply south of the Delta is to decrease the South State requirement for North State water.
The political power structure, fattening themselves from the pocketbooks of South State water interests, can't figure out how to deal with it.
Zenet 7/16/12 1:09 PM
Great Calif. topic & one of the most important debate of our time. Good interview Mr. Caldwell.