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March 15, 2016

Feinstein calls for increased pumping to capture water from storms

Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) today released the following statement calling on federal agencies to increase pumping as much as possible within the bounds of the biological opinions to capture and store more water during March storms:

“Between January 1 and March 6 last year, 1.3 million acre feet of water flowed through the Delta and 651,000 acre feet were pumped out. During the same period this year, 2.8 million acre feet of water flowed through the Delta, but only 627,000 acre feet were pumped out (see Chart A below).
“Pumping less water even though river flows more than doubled means 180,000 to 200,000 acre-feet of water was allowed to flow out to the sea instead of being captured and stored-enough water to supply 360,000 homes for a year. It’s inexcusable that pumping levels have been reduced without sufficient evidence of fish mortality, even while biological opinions would allow more pumping. Read More

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