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California State Water Board Presents Controversial Proposal

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CLFP staff attended the State Water Board workshop on Nov. 22 regarding proposed changes in stream flows in the lower San Joaquin River watershed. The board is proposing to permanently set aside 30 to 50 percent of the flows of lower San Joaquin and its three tributaries for fish habitat protection. The board staff is indicating that agriculture would have to make up for lost river flows with groundwater even though the board is implementing the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act, which will effectively reduce groundwater pumping in many areas. There will be a substantial pushback on this proposal from the agricultural community, water districts and some cities over the coming months. CLFP will work with its colleagues in agriculture to provide substantive comments to the board.  The final proposal is scheduled to be considered by the board in July 2017.


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