Over two years ago, a Los Angeles Times Editorial stated: “The Salton Sea is a disaster in the making. California isn’t doing anything about it.”
The State of California has finally commissioned this summer (2021) a review of proposals submitted over three years earlier (March 2018). What is the state’s schedule for addressing the rapidly deteriorating conditions at the Salton Sea? The current plan is for the review to be completed by December 2022. And then?
COVID-19 has destroyed the water industry’s economic model (see COVID-19 Will Change the Water Industry, a Trilogy: The Industry’s Economic Model Is Dead) and provides a natural experiment of the impact of economic activity on the environment requiring an enhanced role for improved science (see COVID-19 Will Change the Water Industry, a Trilogy: Enhanced Role for Improved Science). What does all this mean for planning and decision-making?
Look at the skies. Are you enjoying the best air quality of your life? Hydrowonk is.
COVID-19 is a natural experiment of the impact of economic activity on the environment. Will the water industry take advantage of this generational opportunity? If so, how?
It is time to abandon how science is used in the water industry today and embrace science using 21st century technology. By integrating improved science into regulatory structures, our industry can improve the management of water resources and the environment.
“The Salton Sea is a disaster in the making. California isn’t doing anything about it,” states a Los Angeles Times Editorial. The announcement of California’s 10-Year Plan was made with great fanfare in 2017. Two years later, one-fifth into the 10-year plan, planned projects have not started. Nothing has happened. The environmental and public health tab from continued inaction compounds.
The long-term, sustained decline of the Salton Sea is a conundrum. Under the terms of the historic long-term water conservation and transfer agreement between the Imperial Irrigation District and the San Diego County Water Authority, the impact of the transfer through 2017 was fully mitigated. As I reported in my earlier blog post, no one in the Salton Sea crowd has an explanation for the precipitous decline in the elevation of the Salton Sea.