Not much water to go around in this second dry year in a row. The Los Angeles Department of Water and Power continues to divert all streams and the Owens River into the aqueduct, and DWP wants to pump around 70,000 acre feet of the underground water this runoff year. Thursday night, the Inyo Water Commission will meet to discuss the DWP plan and to make a recommendation to the Supervisors.
DWP’s new operations plan covers six months of the runoff year. They will continue to review conditions and present a second plan for the final six months. LA contends that their plan is consistent with the management strategy of the Long Term Water Agreement. The stated goal of that agreement is environmental protections and a reliable water supply for LA – two goals that are frequently at odds.
DWP calls their plan for water operations “conservative, responsible and environmentally sustainable.” Inyo Water Director Bob Harrington said he and his staff were analyzing the DWP plan. He will likely have more to say at tonight’s Water Commission meeting.
The Operations plan suggests the amount of water that DWP wants to pump out of each individual wellfield. You can check out our story on DWP’s pumping plan on our website, sierrawave.net, for more specific details. DWP also plans to provide 198,000 acre feet of water for in-valley uses like irrigation, stockwater, fish hatcheries and recreation.
The Inyo Water Commission meeting was set for 6pm Thursday t at the Big Pine Library. The DWP operations plan is the first discussion item on the agenda.