California Water Users Sue Federal Agencies
Government Actions Exacerbating Water Crisis
“The actions by federal agencies are greatly exacerbating California’s ongoing water supply crisis and doing significant damage to farmers, farm workers, residents and the overall economy of our state,” said
The lawsuit focuses on the failure of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) to use the best available scientific data when determining the effects of water operations and other activities on the threatened Delta smelt. The federal agencies continue to ignore scientific data that point to a growing list of other factors or “stressors” that are impacting the Bay-Delta and the native fish that live there. Federal regulators have done nothing to address predation by non-native bass, habitat destruction, expanding wastewater and storm water discharges or the growing level of pesticides and other contaminants released into the estuary.
Moreover, federal agencies are failing to consult with each other as required by law, and their actions are increasingly at odds with each other. At the same time they filed the lawsuit, the Coalition and KCWA also sent a notice of their intent to sue other federal agencies for failing to consult with USFWS when the agencies took actions that may adversely affect the delta smelt and other listed, native fishes in the Delta.
“The Delta smelt face wide ranging threats from contaminants to dredging activities. We have no choice but to sue the federal regulators to get them to address these other factors. Californians cannot afford to have our economy further destroyed because federal regulators continue to ignore the real causes of the Delta’s decline and fail to coordinate their activities,” said
The Coalition for a Sustainable Delta is an ad hoc group of water users who depend on conveyance through the delta for a large portion of their water supplies. The Coalition is dedicated to protecting the delta and is committed to promoting a strategy to ensure its sustainability.
The Kern County Water Agency was created in 1961 by a special act of the State Legislature and serves as the local contracting entity for the State Water Project. The Agency participates in a wide scope of management activities, including water quality, flood control and groundwater operations to preserve and enhance Kern County’s water supply–the main ingredient for a healthy economy.
For more information including a copy of the lawsuit, visit the Coalition's web site at: www.sustainabledelta.com
Coalition for a Sustainable Delta Kern County Water Agency Contact: Contact: Michael Boccadoro Jeanne Varga (916) 441-7685 (661) 549-4520 (916) 600-4383
SOURCE Coalition for a Sustainable Delta