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Orographic rainfall occurs when air containing water vapor is pushed over a mountain and undergoes adiabatic cooling due to the decrease in air pressure. The water vapor condenses to the point until it falls as rain.
The dry area on the leeward side of the mountain due to the dispersion of moisture as orthographic rainfall on the windward side of the mountain
Where orthographic rainfall/rain shadow may occur:
(Carle pp 6-10 and figure 1)
The Sierra Nevadas --> Great Basin Desert
The Coast Ranges --> Central Valley (gap at the San Fran Bay letting moisture hit the northern Sierra Nevadas)
The Southern Sierra Nevadas --> Mojave and Colorado Deserts
The climate in California, including precipitation variability, and the difference between
“average” weather and “normal” weather, and population distribution relative to water.
(Carle pg 23-31 and 1st weeks’ lecture slides)
- Normal for California to experience droughts and particularly wet periods. That being said, it is normal to have extreme variation in terms of moisture such that the weather rarely matches the long-term average. Average annual run-off is 71 maf, but the range normally can vary from 15 maf to 135 maf.
- Most populated areas not near water; we bring the water to the people.
Threats to California’s water supply
(lecture 1st week and Carle preface)
Increasing population growth, ecosystem restoration, climate change and drought, vulnerability to hazards, consumptive use; Water quality esp concerning roundwater overdraft and contamination; the overpumping leads to salinization and leaching of minerals
The hydrologic cycle
(lecture 1st week and Carle)
Continuous shifting of water through 3 reservoirs: the ocean, atmosphere, and the land. The sun induces evaporation from the ocean and land, as well transpiration occurs from plants. This introduces water into the atmosphere which in turn condenses and falls as precipitation. In high elevations, this water collects as snow/ice which in turn may either sublimate or melt into surface runoff; water on the surface may either percolate into the ground water flow, infiltrate the soil and be taken up by plant life, or enter lakes/streams and journey back to the ocean.
- The amount of water that covers an acre to a depth of 1 foot; ~325,800 gallons
- (5-8 people are provided for with their yearly water needs)
water used within the stream system
water removed from surface or groundwater for use
water used and not returned to the system
- measure of stream flow volume
- (cubic feet per second)
A group of ecosystems that have similar climate, vegetation, etc.
Differences in rainfall from year to year (can make agriculture a little more difficult)
degree of variation of species of flora and fauna
The sum of evaporation and plant transpiration from the land surface to the atmosphere
- A water bearing material.
- (Above the bedrock, but below the ground surface)
- Must be porous for the storage of groundwater.
EPA (Environmental Protection Agency):
- Regulates pollution from
- motor vehicles which can contaminate water supply
- and the transport of invasive species
- from other countries. Sets water quality
- standard for discharges of treated sewage and storm waters to rivers from cities and pesticides/fertilizer residue and farm drainage water; sets chemical
- and sediment limits for water quality protection
The Fish and Wildlife Service
and the Fisheries Services of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric
- Regulates the operation of water diversion gates and pumps that affect fish and their habitats
- Can require dam operators to adjust stream flows to benefit fish, and fish passage around the dams
The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission
Regulates dams in CA, negotiating new licenses for many of them
Army Corps of Engineers
sets flood control rules at large dams
The Forest Service and the
Bureau of Land Management
regulate activities on federal land (45%of CA) whose streams and rivers drain into the delta and affect water quality
DWR State Water Project regulates:
the California Aqueduct
the LA aqueduct
the Colorado Aqueduct
Describe some of the early
explorers of the West and conclusions they reached (Reisner
Ch1 and Development of West lecture)
- Dan Francisco Vasquez found no gold; west unsuitable for colonizing; returned with half his men and sanity
- Following Louisiana purchase in 1804, Lewis and Clark found the land was gorgeous and plentiful but they came after an perticularly wet period
- Montgomery Pike 1806: said the country was an arid waste
- Steven Long a decade later had a similar impression
- In the 1820s and 30s beavertrappers found that the land was full of promise and concluded that a move westward was worthwhile
Describe the Mormons approach to settling the West. What was unique about their settlements? (Reisner Ch 1 and Development of West lecture)
First settlement in 1847; 6 million acres under irrigation in several states by 1902; wasn’t until 1902 the US gov’t launched irrigation projects guided by Mormons, first successful non-natives to irrigate; they worked together as a community; helped create the US Bureau of Reclamation
What is "the rain follows the plow" idea? What role did it play in development of the West?
(Reisner Ch 1 and lecture)
Rain follows the plow idea was the superstition that is we populate the west and cultivate the land, the rain would come. Rains coincided with the initial westward advance of settlements so the two must be related. A firm conviction that this was a change of permanent nature. (many theories circulated for example that the commotion fromt he crowd formed clouds) So people wanted to encourage others to develop the west in hope the rains would come. Railroads and land speculators were cheerleaders for the new meteorology and beckoned the population with attractive advertising that they should move west
What is the Homestead Act? What part did it play in development of the West? What were some of the associated problems with it and similar Acts (e.g. Timber Act, Desert Lands Act, Swamplands Act)? (Reisner Chapter 1, especially pgs 41-44; Development of West (DOW)Lecture)
The government wanted to sell cheap 160 acre squares of land westward for folks to cultivate farms on. But the land was terrible, wouldn't work for this. Timber Act (said you'd have to plant ttrees, Desert Lands Act (rivers were scarce, you said you have to irrigate), Swamplands act (said you had to drain); too easy to cheat to comply with the regulations, amass titles, therefore have ranches, because it was necessary.
Explain the Riparian Doctrine and why it worked better on the east coast than in the west (Reisner Ch 1 and DOW lecture).
Riparian right imported from the east, if you own the land, you own the water, it made it possible to monopolize water via damming, etc. Water/rainfall was much more plentiful in the east, the need to monopolize water was not there.
What are the basic findings that Powell came up with in his Report on the Lands of the Arid Regions of the United States? (Reisner pgs 45-47 and DOW Lecture)
2/5 of U.S. has climate that cannot support farming without irrigation. All water irrigates 1/3 of land. Homestead act flawed; inefficient. Proposed every farmer have sufficient water to irrigate 20 acres. Cyclical climate changes. No fences. Must build on stream reservoirs at low elevation and irrigation system, run by feds. States should be formed around watersheds.
Why didn't William Mulholland believe in reservoirs? (Reisner Ch 2)
- Mullholland didn’t believe much in surface water development due to the heat and dryness of California evaporating huge quantities of water.
- Instead he wanted to slow down the rainfall on its return to the ocean and force more into the aquifers.
Having flunked out of grade school, worked as a seaman and a lumberjack (among other things), and then failed as a gold prospector, William Mulholland wasn’t the sort of chap from which great things were naturally expected when he found work digging ditches for the Los Angeles City Water Company. As life would have it, this Irish immigrant found himself as superintendent years later and eventually head of the LA Department of Water and Power. A great deal of his indispensability was attributed to the fact that he had the entire water system of LA committed to memory such that blueprints were unnecessary. Early on, Mulholland worked hard in his conservation efforts to maintain the water supply for the growing city in the desert…but upon involving himself with the fantasy of taking water from the Owens Valley via aqueduct to provide for LA’s needs, the focus of his effort transformed. Upon procuring (rather controversially) the water rights to the Owens Valley, the necessary land, and cutting through masses of red tape, he campaigned for an aqueduct like none the world had seen; with tremendous motivation to drum up the cooperation of thousands, he oversaw and engineered the 200+ mile-long LA aqueduct. He was regarded as a hero in LA, which due to his newfound water source boomed and bloomed, whereas the Owens Valley just wilted and nearly withered away (as did his reputation there). It was when the St. Francis Dam had failed and the great tragedy ensued that he left his position in 1928 and lived out his remaining years, beyond disgrace, with great isolation. He died in 1935.
A self-taught engineer from a prominent family in the southern California region, Fred Eaton became superintendent of the Los Angeles City Water Company by the age of 27. It was he who hired Mulholland as a ditch-digger for the company and he went on to become mayor of Los Angeles and to create the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power. It was also he who presented the idea to Mulholland about fetching water from the Owens Valley and his dedication to the process of obtaining valuable information along with the water rights and land was paramount to the project. But his inside information caused him to make a purchase on some land strategically located in an optimal spot for the storage reservoir needed for the aqueduct and when the time came, he demanded a million dollars from the aqueduct project in exchange for his land. His long-time friendship with Mulholland ended and the sale was never made. As a result, his finances deteriorated the same year the St. Francis Dam collapsed and he died in 1934.
Harry Gray Otis:
- born in Marietta, Ohio and help many unspectacular
- jobs like a clerk for the ohio legislature, a foreman at a printing plant, and an editor of a vertans magazine. Fought on the Union side during the Civil War and eventually became captain.
- president and general manager of the Times-Mirror Company, publisher of the Los Angeles Times.
- instrumental in the growth of the city. He was a member of a group of investors who bought land in the San Fernando Valley based on inside knowledge that the Los Angeles Aqueduct would soon irrigate it.
- - came to LA because of his health, Grew up in New
- Hampshire, Was a rugged individualist and a ferocisous competitor, he would also rarely pass up a deal.
- Son-in-law to Otis
- American newspaper publisher and investor who became owner of the largest real estate empire in the U.S.
- (San Fernando Syndicate)
What event led to the downfall of Mulholland and how did it happen? What
was the impact on future dam regulation? (Reisner Ch 2 pp 97-100 and
lecture St. Francis Dam)
On March 12th, 1928, Mulholland was notified that the St. Francis Dam, harboring a year’s supply of water reserves, was leaking. He inspected the leak with a colleague and pronounced the dam sound, however in a matter of hours, the dam ended up failing, sending a massive flood wave of billions of gallons of water out over 50 miles to the Pacific. The flood was nearly two miles wide and destroyed almost everything in its path, taking the lives of around 500 people. Mulholland was subsequently blamed for the tragedy; he accepted the blame and insisted that it was his. With great guilt he resigned from his post, stating that he envied the dead. A number of people expressed anger towards him, however no charges were pressed; many contended that weaknesses in the rock formations upon which the dam was built was not something anyone at that time would have known about. As well it has been suggested that the reservoir was filled too quickly.
What combination of factors created the need for more water in Los Angeles around the turn of the 20th century? Why did Eaton look to Owens Valley instead of other sources? (Reisner Ch 2 and video)
The population boom and the fact that LA laid in a desertsubject to cyclical droughts were major factors in creating the need for more water. The people were sucking the LA river dry and largely unaware of the limitedness of the groundwater spewing forth from the artesian pressure. With no sufficient water source nearby and the nearest large rivers requiring incredible amounts of energy for pump up water from their canyons, the Owens River was their best bet. The lake sat at such a high elevation in relation to LA that the force of gravity along could bring the water from all that distance away.
How did Los Angeles obtain the water rights and other information they
needed to plan the aqueduct? Did they do anything illegal? Unethical?
Give an example of the “misrepresentations” and backroom deals that advanced the City’s plans. (Reisner Ch 2 and video)Supposedly LA didn’t do anything illegal in order to obtain the water rights, though their actions were rather sneaky and underhanded. Those spearheading the scheme were responsible for misleading those they obtained information from and those they purchased water rights and land from, employing a plethora of lies, espionage, bribery, and well-calculated tactics to get what they needed. They were not upfront when they asked clerks at records offices to show them topographic maps of the Owens Valley and details of the property owners; were not upfront about their intentions when heading out to survey the land, and especially not when they bought the land and water rights, claiming at times to be build private ranches. One example of a misrepresentation that was employed was the manner in which Mulholland went about obtaining additional water rights after Eaton purchased a long-awaited key piece of land from Thomas Rickey. Though his intention was to cancel the Reclamation project, a group of men headed to the Owens Valley under the guise of being investors interested in developing a resort, a group of prominent Los Angeleans he actually organized in order to procure the funds to acquire last of the water rights. In the end, the water was theirs.
What combination of factors created the need for more water in Los Angeles around the turn of the 20th century? Why did Eaton look to Owens Valley instead of other sources? (Reisner Ch 2 and video)
The population boom and the fact that LA laid in a desert subject to cyclical droughts were major factors in creating the need for more water. The people were sucking the LA river dry and largely unaware of the limitedness of the groundwater spewing forth from the artesian pressure. With no sufficient water source nearby and the nearest large rivers requiring incredible amounts of energy for pump up water from their canyons, the Owens River was their best bet. The lake sat at such a high elevation in relation to LA that the force of gravity along could bring the water from all that distance away.
What was the role of Reclamation in the early 1900s: what was their interest in Owens Valley and how did it change with respect to LA? What role did J. Lippincott play? (Reisner Ch 2 and video)
- Lippincott was the regional engineer for the Reclamation Service. The
- Reclamation services formed in 1902 for the purpose of engineering
- irrigation projects, in particular the Owens Valley Project. Lippincott
- shifted focus acting as a liason for the city of LA role.
- owens valley looked like a place of success for the newly developed
- reclamation. They would help the valley irrigate their farms but would
- block LA from diverting the water. Lippincott regional engineer for
- reclamation service got Mulholland and Eaton interested in land to bring
- water to LA. He acted as a double agent and obtained water and land
- rights because he wanted LA to have it.
Why did Roosevelt decide to side with LA, and what was the role of the Forest Service? What was the outcome for those affected? (Reisner Ch 2 and video)
- Roosevelt decided to side with LA after being convinced that it would be much more profitable, better for the economy (as well as his popularity) to allow LA use of the water as opposed to the Owens Valley. The Forest Service, in an attempt to prevent any more issues of
- land and water-rights ownership, declared the area to be part of the Inyo National Forest (something in clear violation of the law as the area was not harboring a forest but rather dying orchard trees). In the end the Bureau’s irrigation project was able to be cancelled.
What was the San Fernando land syndicate and what were their plans? What role did water rights play in their success? How was this tied to Mulholland’s plans for the City’s water management? (Reisner Ch 2 pgs 70-77 and video)
- The San Fernando land syndicate was a group of investors closely associated with Fred Eaton who bought up large plots of land in the San Fernando Valley; they were aware of the pending LA aqueduct which was
- due to run through the valley, thereby increasing their property value by way of irrigation. As well Mulholland knew that LA had a debt cap based on a percentage of its valuation and completion of the aqueduct
- would require more money than the city could spend. However by adding to the city by way of inclusion of the San Fernando Valley, “a new tax base, a natural underground storage reservoir, and a legitimate use of surplus water” stood to be gained. It was the perfect way around the problem.
Describe the St. Francis Dam tragedy and its consequences (Reisner Ch 2, video, lecture St. Francis Dam.)
- On March 12th, 1928, Mulholland was notified that the St. Francis Dam, harboring a year’s supply of water reserves, was leaking. He inspected the leak with a colleague and pronounced the dam sound, however in a
- matter of hours, the dam ended up failing, sending a massive flood wave of billions of gallons of water out over 50 miles to the Pacific. The flood was nearly two miles wide and destroyed almost everything in its
- path, taking the lives of around 500 people. Mulholland was subsequently blamed for the tragedy; he accepted the blame and insisted that it was his. With great guilt he resigned from his post, stating that he envied the dead. A number of people expressed anger towards
- him, however no charges were pressed; many contended that weaknesses in the rock formations upon which the dam was built was not something anyone at that time would have known about. As well it has been
- suggested that the reservoir was filled too quickly.
Describe the 3 events of the 1880s that eventually led to the passage of the Reclamation Act (Reisner chp. 3 and lecture)
- blizzard, drought, flood. Great white winter of 86. Decade after west
- decided to dry up. Spring 89 big rains for east coast. Then came the
- end of privately built dams.
When was the Reclamation Act passed, what did it create and why? (Reisner pp 111-119 and lecture)
1902. Funded irrigation projects for the arid western lands. Needed regulation and to take responsibility to develop the west and use water to full potential.
What are wetlands and how are they classified?
Wetlands are ecosystem in which the soil is saturated with water all year long or for a significant part of the year. Classified by source of water and plants. Oxygen diffuses slowly. Soil contains little oxygen.
What different types of wetlands are there?
- -Swamps: Dominated by shrubs or trees. Broad floodplains in major
- rivers. SE and south central U.S. Mangrove swamps subtropical and tropical
- zones and salt tolerant.
- -Bogs- Source of water is rainfall.
- Wetlands with peat deposits. Variety of shrubs and evergreen trees.
- -Fens- Wetlands primarily fed by groundwater.
- -Tidal or nontidal marshes: Dominated by herbaceous plants such as
- grasses, rushes, reeds, cattails.
A plant that grows wholly or partly submerged in water. Because they have less need to conserve water, hydrophytes often have a reduced cuticle and fewer stomata than other plants
What are the functions of wetlands?
(Bolsa Chica lecture)
Protect and improve water quality, Nursery for birds and fish, Migration routes- Pacific Flyway, Flood protection/erosion protection, Endangered Species and Open space and recreation
How much of our wetlands have been lost in the U.S. and CA?
(Bolsa Chica lecture)
- CA has lost 91% mostly due to agriculture andland development. (4.6 million acres)
- Lower 48 states: 220 million acres in 1600’s to 103 million in 1980
- 75% privately owned
Discuss the results of wetland restoration per the Ballantine
and Schneider study. (Bolsa Chica lecture)
Wetland Restoration: 30 marshes restoration projects of 5-55 years. Sampled soil and vegetation biomass. Plant productivity increased rapidly in first decade but slowly after. After 55 years plant production nearly equal to natural counterparts. But the soil is much slower to recover. After 55 years level of organic matter and capacity of soils to absorb nutrients were less than half of natural.
What events/circumstances led to the authorization of Boulder (now Hoover)Dam and who was involved? (Reisner chp. 4 and lecture)
The water flow of the Colorado River was incredibly erratic, both in terms of volume and placement. The river, of its extremely silty nature, would often stop up and change course, and with the occurrence of flash floods and drastic changes in water levels (in what could be a matter of days), thoughts and attempts to tame said river were certainly nothing new (nor successful*) at the time of planning for Boulder Dam. With the rapid development of Southern California and its limited water access, more and more did the appeal of retrieving the Colorado River water grow. Originally wanting the water for just themselves (yet not in possession of any geological contribution to the river flow), California was not granted outright allowance by Congress. To get a dam in order and tap into a new water source, they’d have to agree to share with their neighboring states. Commerce Secretary Herbert Hoover oversaw the negotiation of the Colorado River Compact, the most necessary step setting in motion the appropriation of the water flow and the foundation upon which future agreements could be made such that the building of the Hoover Dam (and the future expansion of California and other states) could take place.
What is the difference between the Riparian Doctrine and the Doctrine of Appropriation?
Riparian Doctrine was mainly used on the east coast, this docrine stated that if the water ran through your land you were able to use it, but in the west this would be abused to dam up and monopolize the water. Thus they used the doctrine of Appropriation, which stated that he who used the water first for a beneficial purpose got to keep using the water.
Why was it more logical to use the Colorado River water to irrigate the Imperial Valley rather than in the upper basin states of Colorado & Wyoming? (Reisner pp 130-134)
Colorado and Wyoming are nearly a mile high in elevation. It is much colder in the regions and the weather much less predictable than in the warmer Imperial Valley. As a result, it is much more difficult to farm in the regions and only low cash crops can be yielded. Much more can be grown in the lower, warmer areas such as the Imperial Valley.
What was the Colorado Compact, and why was it so important to California? (Reisner Ch 4 and lecture)
- The Colorado River Compact was an agreement made by
- delegates of seven states to divide amongst them the content of the Colorado River just south of the Utah border into 2 basins (with allotments of 7.5 million acre-feet each). California, Arizona, and
- Nevada comprised the lower basin, Colorado, New Mexico, Utah and Wyoming, the upper basin. This entitlement was drawn up on the basis of the Reclamation Service’s estimate of the average flow of the river being 17.5 million acre-feet. 1.5 million acre-feet was to be reserved for Mexico and the remaining million acre-feet was to be allowed for use
- by the lower basin, “whose delegates had threatened to walk out of the negotiations if they didn’t get a better deal” (125, Reisner). The compact was to be taken back to the states for ratification and the allocation of the water per state was a separate issue for the basins.
What is the “fatal flaw” in the Colorado River Compact of 1922? (Carle 110-114 and film)
The major flaw in all of this was that the original estimate from which all this apportionment was based was inaccurate; obtained from an evaluation of a time period of water abundance, it overestimated the annual flow by about 4 million acre-feet. (This would inevitably lead to problems down the line).
Why is the Colorado River referred to as a "deficit" river?
(Carle 110-114 and film)
It provides less water than the human demands that are placed on it
What was/is the significance of Hoover Dam?
(Reisner Ch 4 and film)
- At the time Hoover Dam was built, it was an especially tremendous undertaking, an attempt to create a massive, functional monument like never before and tame the wild river responsible for the Grand Canyon in
- the time of the Great Depression. The working conditions were poor and dangerous, and many social problems concerning workmen’s rights and
- social inequalities were tied in to the building of the dam. Yet in the air was the underlying reason for all this work, the drive that the west would have its water, and with that a new source of electrical power with which it could be propelled forward into a new era of
- progress. With the river now tamed and nearly all its unpredictability dissapated, as well as the reliable, convenient access to water and power now ubiquitously granted, it is easy for the current society to
- not comprehend the full significance of this structure; however it is still one of the most impressive and precious achievements strongly praised and depended upon today.
In what ways was the Reclamation Act inefficient in its early implementation?
(Reisner pp 133-144)
It began building ill-advised projects in the interior West to help reduce the regions reliance on imported food and offered the area some economic stability. (Rocky Mountain region) The Bureau was subsidizing the farmers in the region to grow crops that farmers in other regions were being paid to not grow. Costs of the projects were great yet there was very little return. (1915-1955)
How did the Doctrine of Appropriation affect water development on the Colorado River?(Reisner pgs. 124-125)
It was in 1907 that the Supreme Court ruled that each state was equal to each other state when dealing with the appropriation of water flowing between states. But the issue of how much water was to be distributed to each state remained a long time contested issue and it was in 1922 that the Supreme Court clarified that this was to not necessarily to mean that each state was entitled to an equal share in the water, but an equal right. This was in conjunction with the exercise of water rights in the arid west…the water wasn’t to be due to the owner of the land, but who it was who was first to use the water in a beneficial manner hadthe right to continue using the water for that purpose. Such allocation of water rights (Doctrine of Prior Appropriation and referencing Wyoming vs. Colorado) took center stage in the deliberationsof the use of the Colorado River between the states. The upper basin states were concerned that due to the doctrine, a dam for the lower basin would deny them use of the water at a later date. This created the need for the Colorado Compact prior to authorizing the building of Hoover Dam. (and other water development projects concerning the Colorado River).
Who is the Metropolitan Water District – why did they form and what do they do?
(Carle 110-114 and lecture)
- The Metropolitan Water District was initially formed for the building and operation of the Colorado Aqueduct in 1928. They currently provide water to well over 18 million people and is the largest supplier of treated water in America. They are an organization of 14
- cities and 12 municipal water districts.
River basin planning:
The coordination of the various plans for the developments of the river basin (such as electricity generation, irrigation projects and the consideration of projects up-/down-river)
River basin accounting:
The financial accounting with respect to the collective revenue generated from all the river-basin projects; used to determine the economic feasibility of continuing the projects, keeping to any repayment schedules, and justifications for any planning purposes
Cash register dam:
Dams built for the main purpose of generating revenue from the sale of the electricity they generated (which in turn could be used for funding irrigation projects)
The Central Valley Project for California was built by the Bureau of Reclamation beginning in the mid 1930’s. What events (both national and local) were reasons for initiating the project? In spite of this project,
water problems continued. What factor(s) caused the problem?
(Reisner Ch 5)
The Depression-era was during the 1930s and in order to create more jobs, FDR used public work projects (including building dams). In the 1930s, the Dust Bowl destroyed 35 mill acres of land. This moved migrants to the West, and many settled in the San Joaquin Valley. Farmers sought relief from State to build surface water project for irrigation. Water problems continued because agriculture acreage and water demands increased, pressuring the state for another water project.
Why did the Army Corps of Engineers want to start building projects in the West? What project gave them their “foot in the door” and why did it start a serious rivalry with Reclamation?
(Reisner pp 172-181)
They wanted to start building projects in the West because it’s a dam-builders nirvana, full of deep narrow canyons, and has enormous floods due to the rainfall being erratic and highly seasonal. The “foot in the door” project was Kings and Kern Rivers and it started a rivalry with Reclamation because the Bureau of Reclamation started its investigations and had already been authorized to build the Kings River Project. This was a problem because the Corps were investigating & authorized as well.
What were some of the environmental issues resulting from the Central Valley Project?
The Friant Dam, built on the SJR, caused a 60 mile section of the river to dry up because water storage and agricultural withdrawals. River ecosystems were damaged, including loss of salmon runs.
Which of CA’s water projects serve mainly urban populations? Which serve primarily agriculture?
Hoover Dam served agriculture because it was used to regulate the Colorado River and help irrigation, but it was also for urban population because it provided socal with hydroelectric power. Central Valley project (CVP) was agriculture because it provided farmers with irrigation. State Water Project (SWP) was agriculture because most of the water was used for irrigation. Both Hetch Hetchy and Mokelumne provide the Bay area water, so they serve urban populations.
Damming coastal draining rivers in California has brought about the near extinction of several species of fish. Name at least two of these species.
Salmon and totoaba
What part did
Pat Brown play in the development of the SWP?
Attorney General nullified oil contract, Obsessed water; Elected governor 1958, Lie about cost of SWP, Tidelands oil fund, Oil companies own agricultural land for tax write off. Now get subsidized water. When Pat underfunded the bond issue didn't think of inflation, 1980 Cost 5x more to deliver the last 1.7 maf than the first 2.5maf., Kern County a large portion of water. 1/3 were small farms (smaller than 160 acres), 2/3 owned 227,545 aces owned by 8companies largest being Chevron, 3rd and 4th Getty and Shell, They pay a severance tax to CA on oil they pump off Long Beach, which is immediately put into a fund that makes annual interestfree "loans" of $25 million a year to the State Water Project, which delivers doubly subsidized irrigation water to their formerly worthless land.
The Central Valley Project in regards
to what population it serves, how it was developed, monetary costs, environmental costs, and extent of the system:
- $1.1 billion capital costs, + O&M
- • Repaid by contractors through water sales
- • Those who abide by Reclamation acreage limitsdo not pay interest on this debt
- • Recent contract renewals raised cost of waterEstimated repayment by 2030Central Valley Project– Farmers sought relief from State to build surface water project for irrigation
- • Federal Role– Reclamation given authorization to build in 1935– Took 18 years to build 4 dams– Greatest gift to any group of America farmers– Rescued large farms all ready present.Extends 400 miles, from the Cascade Mountains near Redding, to the Tehachapi Mountains near Bakersfield in the south.
- • 20 dams and reservoirs, 11 power plants, and 500 miles of major canals.
- • Manages ~11 million acre-feet of water; generates 5.6 billion kwhs of electricity annually to meet the needs of ~2 million people.About 7 million acre-feet of water/yr:
- • ~5 million acre-feet for farms
- • ~600,000 acre-feet for municipal and industrial
- • Water for wildlife (required by Central Valley Project Improvement Act 1992)~800,000 acre-feet per year to fish and wildlife habitat~410,00 acre-feet to State and Federal wildlife refuges and wetlands\Actual deliveries vary based on precipitation and storage:
- • Total reservoir storage = 11.3 maf; 15-yr avg = 8.5
The State Water Project in regards
to what population it serves, how it was developed, monetary costs, environmental costs, and extent of the system.
- CVP made water problems worse – agriculture acreage and water demands increased– Pressure from growers for another water project– 4 counties Fresno, Kings, Kern, Madera richest agricultural area.– Urban CA to finance– Carried 5 stages over Tehachapi Mtns.
- • 18 billion agricultural industry
- • Most of water to irrigation
- • 1940s Petroleum deposits in Long Beach
- • SWP approved in 1960
- • Never expanded to full capacity
- • $5.2 billion capital costs, + O&M
- • Paid for by bonds (repaid by contractors), Tidelands Oil fund, federal flood control funds Averages 2.4 million acre-feet of water/yr:~20 million Californians and about 660,000 acres of irrigated farmland
- • Contracted amount is 4.1 maf per year– 29 contractors– MWD contact = 2.01 maf
- • Delivered amount is typically 1/3 – 1/2 of contracted amount29 dams & reservoirs ,~700 miles of canals & pipelines, 8 power plants
- • 5.8 million acre-feet reservoir storage
- • Average 6 billion KWh hydroelectric power generated annually
- • Average net energy use= 5.1 billion KWh