Sacramento River Delta Facilities to Cease Pumping To Guard Smelt
The California Department of Water Resources says it will stop pumping at state water project facilities in the Sacramento River Delta to protect a threatened fish species. KPBS reporter Ed Joyce tell
The California Department of Water Resources says it will stop pumping at state water project facilities in the Sacramento River Delta to protect a threatened fish species. KPBS reporter Ed Joyce tells us what this means for San Diego water supplies.
The state water project supplies drinking water to more than two-thirds of the state's population, including San Diego. DWR Director Lester Snow says the agency will stop pumping in the Delta to protect the endangered delta smelt.
Jeff Miller, with the Center for Biological Diversity calls the pump shutdown a good start.
Miller : Certainly a step in the right direction and it's one of the things that scientists have been saying that needs to happen immediately to protect delta smelt.
Miller says if delta smelt become extinct, it will permanently damage the delta. He faults state agencies, including the Department of Fish and Game, for not heeding warnings several years ago, that the delta ecosystem was in trouble.
Department of Water Resources spokeswoman Sue Sims says stored water in reservoirs should meet water needs in Northern and Southern California during the shutdown.
Sims : Well in the short term for the average person it's not going to mean anything more than we would normally be asking people to do in a dry year and that's conserve.
She says the pump shutdown is on a day-to-day basis. The State Water Project supplies water to 25 million Californians and 750,000 acres of farmland.
Ed Joyce, KPBS News.