“Thinking Big: Is It Time for Transformative Changes in California Water Policy?” will be the topic addressed by Stanford Law Professor Barton H. “Buzz” Thompson Jr., who will deliver the 2014 Anne J. Schneider Foundation lecture at 4 p.m. Tuesday, April 29, at the Crocker Art Museum in Sacramento. Audience discussion will follow Thompson’s lecture, which will then be followed by a reception.
This event is free and is brought to you by contributions to the Anne J.
From PublicCEO.com, an article by Best Best & Krieger LLC (BB&K):
“For the first time in 38 years, a court has declared part of California’s statutory eminent domain law unconstitutional. The ruling, if upheld, will create additional hurdles for public agencies and may have unintended consequences for those the lawsuit sought to protect – property owners.”
“A Tulare County judge has ordered a landowner to stop pumping groundwater in the southern San Joaquin Valley and moving it off the property, to the relief of an irrigation district that wants to keep water available for landowners fighting the drought.
“The preliminary injunction will stay in effect until a trial determines whether the pumping and movement of water violates state water law, visiting Judge Harry N.
“A Los Angeles County judge signaled Tuesday that Department of Water and Power union chief Brian D’Arcy will have to turn over records showing how two nonprofit trusts he co-directs used $40 million in ratepayer money.”
“A recent ruling by the state Court of Appeals has thrown another costly curve or two in Marin’s efforts to tighten building restrictions to protect creeks and the spawning habitat they provide for coho salmon.”
“In a reversal potentially impacting the water supply to millions of Californians, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals recently upheld a biological opinion issued by the United States Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) regarding the effect of California State Water Project (SWP) and federal Central Valley Project (CVP) operations on the delta smelt—a small fish located in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta. The Ninth Circuit held the biological opinion valid, largely based on general principles of deference to federal agencies.
“Property owners in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta are celebrating a legal victory involving a controversial proposal to build two giant water diversion tunnels, though state officials say the ruling is unlikely to delay the project significantly.”
“A California appeals court has sided with landowners fighting the state over test drilling for a proposed water tunnel system in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta.
“In a 2-1 decision, an appeals panel ruled Thursday that the state needed to go through the eminent domain process to gain access to private property on which it wanted to take soil samples and conduct environmental surveys.”
“A federal court in San Francisco on Thursday ruled in favor of ongoing environmental protections for endangered delta smelt, a far-reaching ruling that the attorney who litigated the case said would have implications for any challenges to the protection of steelhead trout in the Salinas River.”
“A federal appeals court in San Francisco on Thursday upheld the science used in fish protection plans that sometimes cut back water pumping for San Joaquin Valley farmers and Southern California cities.
“The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals decision overturned a 2010 lower court ruling from Fresno, which had held that protections for the delta smelt in the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta were not supported in science.”
“A state appellate court dropped a bomb late Thursday on the early stages of the state’s plan to divert fresh Northern California water under or around the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta on its way to Central and Southern California.”
From Bloomberg BNA’s Water Law & Policy Monitor, in an article by Eric L. Garner, Best Best & Krieger:
“Climate change is essentially a water problem. Whether it is drought, flood, changing hydrology or rising sea levels, the impacts of climate change all involve water to some extent. Even those who deny that human activities cause climate change must acknowledge that long-term drought cycles in the past (as evidenced by tree rings and other environmental indicators) and wide variations in hydrology can be expected to recur and may be recurring now.
“Joseph L. Sax, a legal scholar who helped shape environmental law in the United States and fuel the environmental movement by establishing the doctrine that natural resources are a public trust requiring protection, died on Sunday at his home in San Francisco.