“A photograph showing plumes of dust rising from a dry lake bed became a focal point for discussion on Wednesday as government officials and experts met to consider the growing dangers posed by air pollution around the shrinking Salton Sea.
“The photo, which began the first presentation at the meeting at UC Riverside’s Palm Desert campus, showed clouds of gray dust billowing in high winds from Owens Lake on the eastern side of the Sierra Nevada.”
“With implementation of a comprehensive Salton Sea restoration plan years away at best, if at all, the Salton Sea Authority is developing a method to evaluate smaller projects that help rehabilitate the sea incrementally as small amounts of funding become available.”
“With its shores slowly receding and its waters gradually growing saltier, the Salton Sea presents a set of complex dilemmas that have for years defied attempts at partial solutions. Douglas Barnum of the U.S.
“Plaintiffs and defendants in the recently decided coordinated Quantification Settlement Agreement lawsuits have filed motions to recoup attorneys’ fees, with one party seeking nearly $53 million.
“The Morgan/Holtz Parties seek $52,762,358.62 from Imperial Irrigation District, San Diego County Water Authority, Metropolitan Water District, Coachella Valley Water District, state of California, city of Escondido and Vista Irrigation District, defendants in the lawsuits.”
“The sparsely populated Owens Valley is the site of some of the highest levels of particulate matter air pollution ever recorded in the United States, with most of it originating from the dried Owens Lake bed.
“And while Imperial County’s Salton Sea still contains water, it will likely be worse than Owens Lake if the sea is allowed to dry up, said Ted Schade, air pollution control officer with Great Basin Air Pollution Control District.”
“The way that Imperial Irrigation District uses its entitlement of Colorado River water is being scrutinized once again.
“A letter from Southern Nevada Water Authority to U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service questions whether the IID’s delivery of water to the Sonny Bono Salton Sea National Wildlife Refuge is permissible under federal law.”
From the Riverside Press-Enterprise Sacramento Bureau:
“Newly amended legislation urges California power regulators to encourage the use of geothermal power to help meet the state’s renewable energy targets, with a long-term goal of generating money to repair the Salton Sea.”