State water reliability report underscores water crisis

The Association of California Water Agencies said a new report projecting a steady decline in the reliability of the State Water Project underscores once again the serious challenges facing California's water supply and delivery system. The draft report, released by the Department of Water Resources, predicts continued erosion of the reliability of State Water Project deliveries if no action is taken, and that court-ordered restrictions on Delta pumping will result in decreased SWP deliveries...

• Projected decline in future water deliveries reinforces need for action

SACRAMENTO, CA, Jan. 30, 2008 -- The Association of California Water Agencies (ACWA) today said a new report projecting a steady decline in the reliability of the State Water Project underscores once again the serious challenges facing California's water supply and delivery system.

"This report spells out in hard numbers that the State Water Project will be less reliable in the future unless steps are taken to restore the Delta and improve the way we convey water," ACWA Executive Director Timothy Quinn said. "Unless we move forward with a comprehensive solution, we are headed for a very uncertain future for our economy and our environment."

The Department of Water Resources today released a draft report that predicts continued erosion of the reliability of State Water Project deliveries if no action is taken. The report says court-ordered restrictions on Delta pumping will result in decreased SWP deliveries unless new measures are taken. Climate change is also adding to the uncertainty.

Quinn said water uncertainties already are affecting jobs and construction in some parts of the state. Decisions on some new housing developments in Riverside County are on hold, for example, while growers in northern San Diego County are facing a 30% cut in water deliveries this year.

"These problems will not be solved until we make some major changes," Quinn said. "ACWA continues to call for a comprehensive fix that improves the Delta's ecosystem and provides the reliable water supplies our economy needs."

ACWA is a statewide association of public agencies whose 450 members are responsible for about 90% of the water delivered in California.

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