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Litigation

The State Water Contractors and water agencies throughout the state have been involved in ongoing litigation for several years related to the salmon and delta smelt biological opinions—sets of rules issued by federal agencies regulating water operations in the Sacramento San Joaquin Delta. The biological opinions are intended to protect fish species, however many of the actions required in the biological opinions have been proven scientifically unsound.

At the same time, actions in the biological opinions have triggered significant water supply cutbacks. Between the lack of scientific evidence supporting the biological opinions, and the impacts on water users, a federal court has deemed both the delta smelt and salmon biological opinions unlawful and ordered them to be rewritten. This process is currently underway.

Delta Smelt Biological Opinion—Court Decisions & Filings

Federal Court Decision on Fall X2 Action, Issued August 2011

Read the court's decision.

Federal Court Decision on the 2008 Delta Smelt Biological Opinion, Issued December 2010

Read the court's decision.

State Water Contractors Complaint on the 2008 Delta Smelt Biological Opinion, Filed March 2009

Read the complaint.

Salmon Biological Opinion—Court Decisions & Filings

Federal Court Decision on the 2009 Salmon Biological Opinion, Issued September 2011

Read the court's decision.

State Water Contractors Complaint on the 2009 Salmon Biological Opinion, Filed August 2009

Read the complaint.

Featured Member

Dudley Ridge Water District

Dudley Ridge Water District supplies State Water Project water to agricultural water users within the District’s 40,000 acres in western Kings County. All District facilities are lined canals or pipelines; water users all employ drip or micro-sprinkler irrigation systems on permanent crops (pistachios, almonds, pomegranates, stone fruit,...

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Sacramento San Joaquin Delta

ssj-bay-delta

The Sacramento-San Joaquin Bay-Delta (“Delta”), a 700-mile maze of sloughs, canals, waterways and islands located where the San Joaquin and Sacramento rivers converge is the largest estuary on the West Coast and California’s main water supply hub.

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