Bay Delta Conservation Plan
The Bay Delta Conservation Plan is the path towards a secure water supply for California and a healthy Delta ecosystem. This comprehensive effort is an innovative, science-based solution to California’s water supply challenges and the Delta’s environmental struggles. Just as our predecessors advanced crucial infrastructure projects to prepare California for the last 50 years, our members are working with state and federal agencies, environmental organizations and other water agencies to secure water supplies for the decades to come.
The Bay Delta Conservation Plan seeks to identify an alternate way of routing freshwater supplies from the Sacramento River to the state and federal water facilities—the pumps that send water to water agencies throughout California. Rather than using Delta as the primary conduit for water supplies, the Bay Delta Conservation Plan is analyzing options to move water through a tunnel underneath the Delta, or a canal around the Delta.
Today our water supply faces significant threats:
- A 6.7 magnitude earthquake could trigger levee failures at critical locations in the Delta
- Levee failures would allow saltwater from the San Francisco Bay to rush into the Delta’s freshwater
- Saltwater contamination in the Delta would disable a key source of water for 25 million Californians for up to a year
The Bay Delta Conservation Plan will protect Californians from these threats.
The Bay Delta Conservation Plan also incorporates extensive habitat restoration actions. By removing the state’s water operations from the delicate ecosystem, and taking steps to restore habitat, the Bay Delta Conservation Plan will create a healthy, sustainable Delta environment and protect water supplies from earthquakes and other natural disasters.
State and federal agencies recently released a timeline for the completion of the Bay Delta Plan, with a goal of completing the environmental review process by the end of 2012. State and federal water contractors are currently funding the plan’s development, and have committed to funding the construction of a new canal or tunnel.