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California, Oregon farmers lost water in 2001; now they want to be paid

HERALD STAFFSat Jan 28th, 2017 6:51pm By Michael Doyle

McClatchy Washington Bureau

WASHINGTON — Northern California and Oregon farmers who lost irrigation water in 2001 for the sake of fish are plunging into a climactic courtroom battle for tens of millions of dollars in compensation.

Years in the making, the trial set to start Monday in the U.S. Court of Federal Claims near the White House involves a lot of money, but that’s not all. For other Westerners, too, it […]

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Court Decision May Mean California Owes Billions In Water Rights

AUBREY BETTENCOURT Executive Director, California Water Alliance 10:26 AM 01/13/2017

Within hours of the release of a potentially adverse federal court decision in late December, the California State Water Resources Control Board (SWRCB) extended by two months the open public comment period for consideration of its Bay-Delta Plan.

Elements of its plan include an uncompensated mandate to increase flows on several major California rivers by depriving long-established water-rights holders of access to their water. Now a federal court says the […]

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Farmers score in battle over diverting Klamath River water for endangered species

BY MICHAEL DOYLE mdoyle@mcclatchydc.com

Northern California and Oregon irrigation districts have won a key round in a long-running legal battle as they seek compensation for their loss of water in the Klamath River Basin.

In a 53-page opinion, U.S. Court of Federal Claims Judge Marilyn Blank Horn concluded the federal government’s 2001 diversion of Klamath River Basin water amounted to a “physical taking” of the irrigation districts’ property. Horn’s ruling Wednesday rejected the government’s argument that the diversion instead amounted […]

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Get your own water, Oregon timber firm tells California town

By THOMAS FULLER The New York Times WEED, Calif. — The water that gurgles from a spring on the edge of Weed, a Northern California logging town, is so pristine that for more than a century it has been piped directly to the wooden homes spread across hills and gullies.

To the residents of Weed, which sits in the foothills of Mount Shasta, a snow-capped dormant volcano, the spring water is a blessing during a time of severe and prolonged […]

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Undamming this major U.S. river is opening a world of possibility for native cultures and wildlife

May 4, 2016

“The run of salmon in the Klamath River this year is the heaviest it has ever known. There are millions of fish below the falls near Keno, and it is said that a man with a gaff could easily land a hundred of the salmon in an hour, in fact they could be caught as fast as a man could pull them in.”

—Klamath Falls Evening Herald front page on Sept. 24, 1908.

Flowing over 250 miles […]

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Freeing the Klamath River

April 13, 2016

by Sherron Lumley

The Klamath Hydroelectric Settlement Agreement made history April 6, with diverse groups and some former enemies signing an accord for the removal of four dams on the Klamath River. Once decommissioned, the dams will be transferred from Pacific Power to the Klamath River Renewal Corporation, then demolished, following a process administered by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC). The April 6 agreement is intended to result in the largest river restoration project in the […]

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West Coast Water Quality Standards Not Strong Enough to Fight Ocean Acidification

April 13, 2016

OAKLAND, Calif. — A new scientific paper published today in the journal Ocean & Coastal Management concludes that current water quality criteria are inadequate to address ocean acidification on the West Coast. This paper and a related report published last week call for major changes in how California, Oregon and Washington deal with ocean acidification triggered by the high carbon emissions that are also causing climate change.

Water quality standards are the management foundation of the Clean […]

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Editorial:Klamath dam removal a good first step toward fixing water woes

By The Oregonian Editorial Board

on April 09, 2016 The agreement by Oregon, California and the utility PacifiCorp to remove four dams on the Klamath River is good news in that it shows a clear commitment to address longstanding water shortages suffered by farmers and ranchers in the arid Klamath Basin. But the immediate effect of removing the dams will be to help migrating salmon, not farmers, and the real water brokering ahead must involve constituents in the two-state basin […]

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Oregon, California, federal agencies will seek removal of Klamath dams

April 5, 2016

by Jonathan Cooper

SACRAMENTO — Oregon, California, the federal government and others have agreed to go forward with a plan to remove four hydroelectric dams in the Pacific Northwest without approval from a reluctant Congress, a spokesman for dam owner PacifiCorp said Monday.

The dam removal is part of an announcement planned Wednesday in Klamath, Calif., by the governors of both states and U.S. Interior Secretary Sally Jewell. Tearing down the dams would be a major victory […]

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Water Woes Forecasted for the West

RFD-TV

March 15, 2016

Spring and summer water supply estimates could spell trouble for farmers and ranchers in the West.

According to data from the USDA’s National Resource Conservation Service, the snowpack growth we saw from record snowfall earlier this winter is now declining due to changing weather conditions. Snowpack serves as an indicator of future water availability and forecasts of snowpack impact decisions made by individual producers and irrigation districts.

“December snows got us off to a strong start,” […]

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