Water and the COVID-19 Pandemic Impacts on Municipal Water Demand
Keywords:economic analysis, planning and management, wastewater, water quality
Pollution Prevention (Resource Management Strategy)$0.00 Bulk Download
Pollution Prevention (Resource Management Strategy)Department of Water Resources | July 29, 2016...Summary
Pollution prevention can be defined as the reducing or eliminating of waste at the source by modifying production processes, promoting the use of...
Pollution prevention can be defined as the reducing or eliminating of waste at the source by modifying production processes, promoting the use of non-toxic or less toxic substances, the implementation of practices or conservation techniques including activities that reduce the generation and/or discharge of the pollutants, and the application of innovative and alternative technologies which prevent pollutants from entering the environment prior to treatment. These preventive activities can also include new equipment designs or technology, reformulation or redesign of products, substitution of raw materials, updating or improvements of existing management practices, continued maintenance of previously implemented management practices, training and education/outreach, and improved collaboration.
Pollution prevention begins at the source. Sources of water quality pollution can be categorized into two types: point-source and non-point-source. In California, point-source pollution prevention is addressed through the Clean Water Enforcement and Pollution Prevention Act of 1999, Water Code Section 13263.3(d)(1), which authorizes the State Water Resources Control Board (SWRCB), a regional water quality control board (RWQCB), or a publicly owned treatment works (POTW) to require a discharger to prepare and implement a pollution prevention plan.
A point-source discharger is defined per Water Code Section 13263.3(c) as any entity required to obtain National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit or any entity subject to the federal pretreatment program. A non-point discharger is any discharger not covered by a NPDES permit.
Pollution prevention can contribute to the protection of water quality for beneficial uses by protecting water at its source and therefore may reduce the need and cost for other water management and treatment options. By preventing pollution, restoring, and then protecting improved water quality throughout a watershed, water supplies can be used and reused by a greater number and types of downstream water uses. Protecting water quality through appropriate pollution prevention is consistent with a watershed management approach to water resources problems.
Review of SWRCB’s “Working Draft Scientific Basis Report for New and Revised Flow Requirements on the Sacramento River and Tributaries, Eastside Tributaries to the Delta, Delta Outflow, and Interior Delta Operations”$0.00 Bulk Download
Review of SWRCB’s “Working Draft Scientific Basis Report for New and Revised Flow Requirements on the Sacramento River and Tributaries, Eastside Tributaries to the Delta, Delta Outflow, and Interior Delta Operations”Delta Independent Science Board | February 23, 2017...Summary
Insightful, informative, well-illustrated, clearly written—these are among our overall impressions of “Working Draft Scientific Basis Report for New and Revised Flow Requirements on...
Insightful, informative, well-illustrated, clearly written—these are among our overall impressions of “Working Draft Scientific Basis Report for New and Revised Flow Requirements on the Sacramento River and Tributaries, Eastside Tributaries to the Delta, Delta Outflow, and Interior Delta Operations”. The comments below focus on recommended improvements.
In particular, we recommend clarifying, and further justifying scientifically, the proposed use of percent of “unimpaired flow” as the main basis for establishing an annual environmental water budget. We also suggest presenting a further review of cold-water management, a deeper analysis of non-flow stressors, additional consideration of near-term responses to climate change, and elaboration of how regulations managed adaptively may improve scientific understanding of environmental flows.
San Francisco Bay: A Freshwater Starved Estuary$0.00 Bulk Download
San Francisco Bay: A Freshwater Starved EstuaryThe Bay Institute | September 1, 2016...Summary
How Reducing Flows Harms the Ecosystems of San Francisco Bay and Coastal Waters The Bay Institute’s major new study, San Francisco Bay: The...How Reducing Flows Harms the Ecosystems of San Francisco Bay and Coastal Waters
The Bay Institute’s major new study, San Francisco Bay: The Freshwater – Starved Estuary, documents how the ecological health of San Francisco Bay and the nearby ocean is at high risk because large-scale water diversion in the Bay’s watershed severely limits the amount of fresh water that reaches the Bay and alters the timing of that flow. Inflow to the Bay from its Central Valley watershed now averages less than half of what it would be without diversions; in some years just one-third of the runoff makes it to the Bay. The result is a nearly permanent drought for the Bay’s fish, wildlife, and their habitats. This radical alteration creates severe consequences for the Bay and marine ecosystems – and Bay Area residents pay the price.
The study shows how unsustainable diversion of the Bay’s freshwater inflow:
Dramatically cuts production of fish and shrimp that are the food source for marine mammals, like Orca Whales, and birds;
Allows pollutants to accumulate to dangerous levels and encourages blooms of toxic algae;
Reduces sediment supply to Bay Area wetlands and beaches;
Makes it easier for undesirable non-native species to successfully invade the Bay Estuary.
The San Francisco Bay Estuary is created by the mixing of fresh water from the Central Valley’s rivers with salt water from the Pacific Ocean. Dramatically reducing the inflow of fresh water generates cascading effects in the Bay’s watershed, the Bay itself, and coastal ocean waters.
The report’s major findings include:
On average, since 1975 more than half (53%) of runoff from the Central Valley watershed has been diverted, stored, or exported before it can reach the Bay – and in many years two-thirds or more of the Bay’s inflow is captured;
As a result of intensive water diversions, the Bay experiences catastrophically dry years almost half the time (only one “supercritically dry” year occurred naturally between 1975-2014, but the Bay experienced nineteen supercritical years during that period);
Numerous unrelated fish species – from sharks to salmon, from sturgeon to smelt – show strong positive correlations with Bay Inflow; many of these species are now endangered, and even commercially viable fisheries are in decline;
Predators that feed on flow-dependent fish and shrimp are feeling the pinch – for example, dwindling supplies of Central Valley Chinook salmon may restrict the recovery of the local Orca whale population;
Blooms of toxic “algae” (cyanobacteria) are becoming more frequent, and other pollutants are becoming more concentrated, as a result of reductions in freshwater flows from the Bay’s watershed;
Bay Area beaches and tidal wetlands are deprived of sediment that was once transported by high river flows.
The study reports that local businesses are likely to suffer from the Bay’s continued decline, including those related to commercial fishing and tourism. As our Bay, beaches, wetlands, and fish and wildlife populations deteriorate, the quality of life for many Bay Area residents will also be severely – and perhaps permanently – damaged.
The study identifies four important approaches to improving Bay inflows:
Update the State’s 21 year old water quality standards for the Bay Estuary to ensure adequate inflow
Require all those who divert water destined for the Bay, not just a subset, to contribute their fair share of fresh water to support benefits enjoyed by all Californians
Invest in local water supplies around the state including conservation, and recycling, that can generate millions of acre-feet of water and reduce reliance on water diverted from the Estuary and its watershed
Coordinate management of flows with wetland and beach restoration to more effectively protect shorelines
The study was prepared for the San Francisco Estuary Partnership, a coalition of resource agencies, non-profits, citizens, and scientists working to protect, restore, and enhance water quality and fish and wildlife habitat in and around the San Francisco Bay Delta Estuary, which also provided the majority of funding for the project.
Salt and Salinity Management (Resource Management Strategy)$0.00 Bulk Download
Salt and Salinity Management (Resource Management Strategy)Department of Water Resources | July 29, 2016...Summary
Unlike the crisis scenarios California routinely prepares for, chronic water quality problems like increasing salinity do not trigger overnight evacuations or mobilize teams...
Unlike the crisis scenarios California routinely prepares for, chronic water quality problems like increasing salinity do not trigger overnight evacuations or mobilize teams of emergency personnel. Salinity generally shows up in localized areas, expands slowly, and produces incremental rather than event-based effects. Salinity impacts can be measured as yearly reduction of crop production and farmable land across an impacted region, lost jobs, higher utility rates, reduction of community growth potential, loss of habitat, premature corrosion of equipment, and lost opportunities. Salinity issues are rarely considered newsworthy until the impacts have already occurred.
Managing salt today can avoid significant cost increases. For one portion of California, a State Water Resources Control Board study found that Central Valley salinity accumulations, if unmanaged, are projected to cause a loss of $2.167 billion in California’s value of goods and services produced by 2030 (Howitt et al. 2009). Income is expected to decline by $941 million, employment by 29,270 jobs, and population by 39,440 due to the increase in commercial operating expenses incurred by water supplies that have higher salinity concentrations. The study examined the impact to irrigated agriculture, confined animal operations, food processors, and residential water users.
Potential benefits of implementing a salinity management program just in the Central Valley are estimated to be $10 billion by 2030. There have been similar studies conducted in other parts of the state and nation.
The Southern California Salinity Coalition was formed in 2002 to address the critical need to remove salt from water supplies and to preserve water resources in California (see www.socalsalinity.org/index.htm). The Multi-State Salinity Coalition addresses similar issues (see www.multi-statesalinitycoalition.com). Both groups indicate that proactive salt management through combinations of source control, treatment, storage, export, real time management with dilution and recycling, is economically beneficial.
Salinity management not only reduces salt loads that impact a region, it is also a key component of securing, maintaining, and recovering usable water supplies. Salt is ubiquitous throughout the environment and it is a conservative constituent meaning it is never destroyed, just concentrated or diluted and transported. It also means that the concentration and loads of salt within any given area will have direct impacts on most of the resource management strategies in place or currently being developed.
While there is no single solution that can be implemented to resolve increasing salinity, incremental management steps, such as those outlined in the Recommendations Section, can move the State forward to address this growing threat to the California economy.