Comments on Calif. groundwater project extended through holidays

Nov. 28, 2000
The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California (MWD) today extended the public comment period on the Supplement to the Draft Environmental Impact Report/Environmental Impact Statement (EIR/EIS) for the proposed Cadiz Groundwater Storage and Dry-Year Supply Program in eastern San Bernardino County.

LOS ANGELES, Calif., Nov. 22, 2000(BUSINESS WIRE)—The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California (MWD) today extended the public comment period on the Supplement to the Draft Environmental Impact Report/Environmental Impact Statement (EIR/EIS) for the proposed Cadiz Groundwater Storage and Dry-Year Supply Program in eastern San Bernardino County.

Public comments on the supplement will now be accepted through Monday, Jan. 8, 2001, instead of the original close of comments on Dec. 4, 2000. BLM and MWD officials said the extension was granted in response to more than 300 public requests for more time to review the supplement and offer public input. Comments should continue to be addressed to BLM (Attn: James Williams, 6221 Box Springs Blvd., Riverside, Calif. 92507) or Metropolitan (Attn: Jack Safely, P.O. Box 54153, Los Angeles, Calif. 90054).

The extension does not change the schedule for a previously announced public meeting to be held Wednesday, Nov. 29, 2000, at 7 p.m. at Twentynine Palms City Hall, 6132 Adobe Road. Metropolitan also will host an additional public meeting on the supplement and the proposed Cadiz project at 6 p.m. Monday, Dec. 18, 2000, in the Boardroom at its Los Angeles headquarters, 700 N. Alameda St.

The supplement is available online at www.ca.blm.gov/needles/nepa01.html. Review copies are available at BLM offices in Needles (101 West Spikes Rd.) and Riverside (6221 Box Springs Blvd.), and Metropolitan's Los Angeles headquarters, as well as local public libraries.

BLM, as the lead Federal agency, and Metropolitan, as the lead State agency, developed the supplement in response to public and agency concerns about groundwater management and potential air quality impacts associated with the project, proposed by Metropolitan in partnership with Cadiz Inc. Cooperating agencies in developing the supplement were the National Park Service and the U.S. Geological Survey.

The project proposes to utilize the groundwater basins under a portion of the Cadiz and Fenner Valleys, about 60 miles southwest of Needles, Calif., to store water imported from Metropolitan's Colorado River Aqueduct during years with surplus water and extract the stored water and available indigenous groundwater for use by Metropolitan to serve its customers. Some of the necessary facilities involved would be located on Cadiz Inc. private land, while a 35-mile-long pipeline and other facilities would be on public lands administered by BLM.