When Californians overwhelmingly approved Proposition 1 in 2014, voters made clear their desire for additional water storage in anticipation of future droughts. Opportunities to build significant storage occur only once or twice in a century. The state must not let this one slip away.

The California Water Commission has an obligation to fulfill the state’s commitment to voters when it announces in July which projects, if any, will receive the $2.7 billion authorized in the $7.5 billion bond measure.

But the commission announced Thursday that nearly half of the 11 project requests have no public benefits that meet the ballot measure’s rules for getting money. The rest, it said, fall far short of providing the benefits necessary to justify the cost.

Details were absent from the report. Agencies will receive the in-depth analysis Feb. 2 and will have three weeks to provide more scientific evidence of the benefits before a final decision in July.

If no storage projects meet the commission’s standards, then the rules need another look. The public clearly wanted more water storage. At stake is not only our water supply but voters’ already frayed trust in government.

Some of the proposed projects really are worthless. The $2.66 billion Temperance Flat Reservoir Project, …read more

Source:: East Bay – Science

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