New run-off year arrives with pumping questions

pumpThe new water run-off year arrived on Sunday.  Now the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power will soon issue a run-off forecast for the year.  After that, DWP will give Inyo County a proposed pumping plan.  Many  expect a clash over how much LA should take out of the underground this dry year.

Inyo Water Director Bob Harrington said that LADWP had reported on March 1st that the snow course measurements showed a 26% of normal snowpack.  A few storms since then have improved that number somewhat.  Harrington said that LADWP staff also reported that based on the 26% of normal snowpack, they would calculate the run-off forecast at 63% of normal.  LA factors in the previous year’s condition and other details to arrive at the run-off forecast.

Harrington said LADWP will give Inyo their pumping plan April 20th.  Inyo has 10 days to respond.  Differences will be discussed in a Technical Group meeting after that with a possible revision of plans to follow.

As Inyo County faces year after year of pumping, the Long Term Water Agreement still has no real method to stop pumps before they do damage.  Both Inyo and LA have admitted that the so-called on-off provisions of the agreement don’t work.  Staff from both sides have met to revise the agreement, but after more than six years, the two side have failed to agree on a workable method.

Now, officials want to hire a facilitator to work with Inyo and LA to come up with a workable method of controlling pumps. Some 30 years ago,  Inyo County  filed an environmental lawsuit to make DWP prove that pumping did not do significant damage.  LA never did produce an adequate Environmental Impact Report on pumping.  Instead, Inyo signed the agreement which also has not dealt with the main issue of pumping either.


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6 Responses to New run-off year arrives with pumping questions

  1. Trouble March 31, 2012 at 11:18 pm #

    I guess the record run off last year is long forgotten. Owens Valley owes DWP nothing!

  2. MJA April 1, 2012 at 11:08 am #

    I don’t think DWP should legally take any water at all.
    Nature has inalienable rights too!


  3. Dave April 1, 2012 at 9:05 pm #

    The State of Jefferson should extend to Inyo County.

    Let So-Cal fight each other for water in order to water their golf courses, wash their 2wd drive monster trucks and fill their swimming pools in the desert.

    Time for Inyo Supes to stand up for its citizens and play hardball against the tyranny.

  4. Big AL April 1, 2012 at 11:47 pm #

    The best way to end the damage is to stop pumping. I say end .. the damage, because I believe they already have caused damage in some areas with the heavy pumping they have done. They will just take their water anyway they can. To feed they thirsty south land.

  5. NewEra April 2, 2012 at 8:20 am #

    Its time to stand up united as Owens Valley residents, which needs to include’s District Supervisors, town coucils and leaders to unite and say enough is enough, LADWP should no longer have their way with us! especially when their benefit has negative effects to our immediate surroundings!
    Water has always been the life line to all in the valley! Why aren’t we looking at this as they are leaving us with a slow death?
    any opposition from those under LADWP pay roll holds little ground with me. “SELL OUTS”!

  6. Tim April 2, 2012 at 2:49 pm #

    I’ve copied this from February 15, 2012 News posting from the

    New LADWP chief for Eastern Sierra

    “James G. Yannotta, Assistant Director of Water Resources in Los Angeles, will come up to the Bishop office in early April to start the transition. He will take over July 1.

    Current and long time Aqueduct Manager Gene Coufal will retire sometime after that date. DWP Public Information Officer Chris Plakos is familiar with Yannotta, who he says has climbed Mt. Whitney five times, enjoys mountain biking and hiking. Yannotta has been described as a people person. ”

    Remember something about this guy; His Job is to take over the task of extracting as much water as possible from the underground while continuing to divert all surface water.

    Yeah That’s my kind of guy.(NOT). Gee I wonder as stated above about how he enjoys Biking & Hiking if he actually does any of what he has claimed to do.

    He has a great reputation for doing great things with recycled water.

    Mr. Yannotta do all of us a favor, Come to the bishop office and make your appearance as you are required to do and return back to LA and leave the water alone. You have enough already.

    If I were you I would not want my name associated with the destruction of the Owens Valley. Remember the name of first guy who had your job??? William Mulholland….


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