California Gov. Gavin Newsom is moving ahead with the delta tunnel project despite objections from environmental groups.
Driving the news: The Department of Water Resources released its final report on the plan to build a tunnel beneath the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta.
- According to the report, the construction of the tunnel and its operations would significantly impact the Delta’s endangered fish species, farmland and tribal cultural resources.
- Newsom and other state officials have argued that the tunnel is needed to help the state’s long-standing water issues.
- The proposed tunnel would pipe water from the Sacramento River, bypassing the Delta, and redirect it into Bethany Reservoir. That water would then feed into an aqueduct headed south.
- The final report’s release marks a major step toward finalizing the plan, which would overhaul California’s water management system.
- A 2020 estimate placed the cost for the tunnel at $16 billion.
What they’re saying: “This updated plan is still exactly what we thought – a disastrous water grab to steal our Valley water,” said Rep. Josh Harder (D–Turlock). Sacramento is hellbent on spending $16 billion of our taxpayer dollars to ship our water down south so Beverly Hills can have green lawns. It’s a complete disgrace. Our community is universally opposed to this project and we will not stop fighting this tooth and nail.”