San Joaquin Valley Water Bill Opposed by 9 Conservation Groups

June 2, 2011

Rep. Nunes’ Bill Would Harm California Environment and Economy

WASHINGTON, June 2, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — In response to the legislative hearing today by the House Subcommittee on Water and Power on Rep. Nunes’ “San Joaquin Valley Water Reliability Act” (H.R. 1837), nine conservation groups have sent a letter to subcommittee members, warning its passage would lead to disastrous results. The groups on the letter include: Environmental Defense Fund, American Rivers, California League of Conservation Voters, Defenders of Wildlife, Earthjustice, League of Conservation Voters, Natural Resources Defense Council, The Nature Conservancy, and Sierra Club.

“The only reliable thing about this deeply flawed bill is that it threatens the health of the water pumped out of the Bay Delta estuary, thousands of West Coast fishing jobs, and our economy,” said Cynthia Koehler, EDF California water legislative director. “It also undermines the co-equal goals of environmental and water supply reliability established in California’s 2009 water reform legislation. Congress should reject this extreme measure in all its forms.”

EDF and the other eight conservation organizations that signed the letter oppose H.R. 1837 because it:

  1. Drastically undermines environmental protections for the Bay Delta estuary, commercially valuable salmon and other wildlife;
  2. Preempts state law and interferes with state water rights;
  3. Guts the 1992 Central Valley Project Improvement Act; and
  4. It overturns the broadly supported and court approved settlement to restore the San Joaquin River.

“This dangerous legislation threatens senior water rights holders throughout the state,” concluded Koehler. “It also would disrupt collaborative, comprehensive programs, like the Bay Delta Conservation Plan, designed to protect endangered species, restore the Delta ecosystem, and improve the reliability of California’s water supply.”

Environmental Defense Fund (edf.org), a leading national nonprofit organization, creates transformational solutions to the most serious environmental problems. EDF links science, economics, law and innovative private-sector partnerships. Visit us on Twitter @EnvDefenseFund and @EDF_CA, on our California blog On the Water Front and California Dream 2.0, and on Facebook facebook.com/EnvDefenseFund.

Sean Crowley, (202) 550-6524-c, scrowley@edf.org
Jennifer Witherspoon, (415)293-6067, jwitherspoon@edf.org

SOURCE Environmental Defense Fund

Source: newswire

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