California looks for a way to save the delta, quench residents’ thirst

Nearly three decades after a proposed delta bypass was killed by voters in a divisive initiative battle, the idea is back in vogue.

Pumping water from the delta’s southern edge has helped shove the West Coast’s largest estuary into ecological free fall, devastating its native fish populations and triggering endangered species protections that have tightened the spigot to San Joaquin Valley farms and Southern California cities.

The mounting delta problems, along with the potential threats of a rise in sea level and a major earthquake, have turned the attention of state and federal agencies to an “alternative conveyance”: either a canal or, more likely, a 40-mile water tunnel system that would be the nation’s longest, some 150 feet beneath the delta.

Read more: http://www.sanluisobispo.com/2010/11/29/1387624/california-looks-for-a-way-to.html#ixzz16h8ZZgEK

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