State Senate Candidate Condemns Delta Tunnel Report

Special to the Vanguard

Sacramento, CA – Northern California leaders reacted to the alarm at the prospect of a new Delta Conveyance Project proposal after the release of the final Environmental Impact Report (EIR).

Governor Newsom, on Friday, reaffirmed his support for the redesigned Delta Conveyance Project proposal, highlighting how critical the project is to protect millions of people’s water access against the threats of climate change.

The Governor pledged to right-size this project to one tunnel and embrace an all-of-the-above approach to protecting California’s water access.

California is expected to lose 10% of its water supply due to hotter and drier conditions, threatening the water supply for millions of Californians. Extreme weather whiplash will result in more intense swings between droughts and floods—California’s 60-year-old water infrastructure is not built for these climate impacts.

During January’s atmospheric rivers, the Delta Conveyance Project could have captured enough water for 2.3 million people’s yearly usage, the Governor’s office explained.

“Climate change is threatening our access to clean drinking water, diminishing future supplies for millions of Californians—doing nothing is not an option,” Governor Newsom said.

He added, “This proposed project is essential to updating our water system for millions of Californians. This new approach, redesigned following community and environmental input, is how we can build a California of the future.”

However, the plan calls for a tunnel under the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta to ship water to Southern California:

Dr. Rozzana Verder-Aliga, Vallejo vice mayor and city council member since 2014, and candidate for State Senate, issued a statement on Friday, in opposition to the plan.

“Delta communities are united against the proposed Delta tunnel and this final EIR doesn’t fix the significant environmental and equity problems posed by the project,” Verder-Aliga said. “I’ll work to make sure Delta residents are heard and that our water resources, local economy, quality of life and environment are protected.”

The proposed multi-billion dollar tunnel, which has been in the works for decades, would direct water from the Sacramento River to Southern California, bypassing the Delta. Among other things, the EIR confirmed construction of the 45-mile-long tunnel would impact endangered and threatened fish species, regional farmland and tribal cultural sites.

Later this month, the Department of Water Resources will determine whether to certify the environmental report and approve the tunnel project.

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Disclaimer: the views expressed by guest writers are strictly those of the author and may not reflect the views of the Vanguard, its editor, or its editorial board.

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