Archive for the ‘Delta & Environment’ Category

State Division of Boating and Waterways set to control aquatic invasive plants in Delta

Thursday, February 22nd, 2024
Photos from Division of Boating and Waterways.

SACRAMENTO, Calif.— California State Parks’ Division of Boating and Waterways (DBW) today announced plans to control aquatic invasive plants in the west coast’s largest estuary, the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta and its southern tributaries. Starting March 6 through Nov. 30, 2024, DBW crews will begin herbicide treatments on water hyacinth, South American spongeplant, Uruguay water primrose, Alligator weed, Brazilian waterweed, curly leaf pondweed, Eurasian watermilfoil, coontail, ribbon weed, and fanwort in the Delta. Depending on weather conditions and plant growth/movement, treatment dates may change. Select areas of the Delta with high infestations or coverage of water hyacinth will be controlled using mechanical harvesting efforts through December 2024.

DBW works with local, state, and federal entities to better understand the plants and implement new integrated control strategies to increase efficacy. These aquatic invasive plants have no known natural controls and negatively affect the Delta’s ecosystem as they displace native plants. Continued warm temperatures help the plants proliferate at high rates. Plants are also known to form dense mats of vegetation creating safety hazards for boaters, obstructing navigation channels, marinas, and irrigation systems. Due to their ability to rapidly spread to new areas, it is likely that the plants will never be eradicated from Delta waters. Therefore, DBW operates a “control” program as opposed to an “eradication” program.

“Thank you to the public and partners for working with us on combating these aquatic invasive plants,” said DBW’s Deputy Director Ramona Fernandez. “Together we are mitigating their impacts on the lives of all who live, work, and recreate in the Delta.”

All herbicides used in DBW’s Aquatic Invasive Plant Control Program are registered for aquatic use with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the California Department of Pesticide Regulation. Treated areas will be monitored to ensure herbicide levels do not exceed allowable limits and follow EPA-registered label guidelines. The public may view the public notices and sign up to receive weekly updates on this year’s treatment season on DBW’s website.

Below is a list of proposed control actions for the 2024 treatment season:

Floating Aquatic Vegetation (Public Notice)

Water hyacinth, South American spongeplant, Uruguay water primrose, and alligator weed.

Herbicide Control

· Proposed Treatment Period
  All Sites: March 6, 2024 – Nov. 30, 2024

· Type of Herbicides: Glyphosate, 2,4-D, Imazamox, or Diquat

· Potential Treatment Areas: Initially in and/or around, but not limited to the following areas: San Joaquin River, Old River, Middle River, Fourteen Mile Slough, and Snodgrass Slough.

Mechanical Harvesting (If necessary)

· Harvesting Dates: March 2024 – April 2024 and July 2024 – December 2024

· Mechanical Harvesting Sites: Select areas of the Delta with high infestations or coverage of water hyacinth. See the Public Notice for potential mechanical harvesting control areas.

Submersed Aquatic Vegetation (Public Notice)

Brazilian waterweed, curlyleaf pondweed, Eurasian watermilfoil, coontail, ribbon weed, and fanwort.

Herbicide Control

· Treatment Period: Starting March 6, 2024, through Nov. 30, 2024, treatment period is based upon DBW field survey data, water temperatures and fish surveys.

· Type of Herbicide: Fluridone, Endothall or Diquat.

· Potential Treatment Areas: In and/or around the following areas (individual areas will be noticed prior to treatment application):

Anchorages, boat ramps and marinas: B & W Resort, Delta Marina Yacht Harbor, Grindstone Joes, Hidden Harbor Resort, Korth’s Pirates Lair, Oxbow Marina, Owl Harbor, River Point Landing, Rivers End, St. Francis Yacht Club, Tiki Lagoon, Tracy Oasis Marina, Turner Cut Resort, Vieira’s Resort, Village West Marina, and Willow Berm.
Near Old River: Berkeley Ski Club, Bullfrog Ski Club, Cruiser Haven, Delta Coves, Diablo Ski Club, Discovery Bay, Golden Gate Ski Club, Hammer Island, Italian Slough, Kings Island, Orwood Marina, Piper Slough, Sandmound Slough, Stockton Ski Club, and Taylor Slough.

Sacramento Area: French Island, Hogback, Long Island Slough, Prospect Island, Sacramento Marina, Snug Harbor, and Washington Lake.

Stockton Area: Atherton Cove, Buckley Cove, Calaveras River, Fourteenmile Slough, Mosher Slough, and Windmill Cove.

Mechanical Harvesting

This type of control method is not used for submersed aquatic vegetation. These plants are spread by fragmentation. Cutting the plants back exacerbates the problem, as shreds of the plants float away and re-propagate.

To report sightings, subscribe for program updates or more information regarding the control program, connect with us online at our website, via email at, or by phone at (888) 326-2822.

Last year, DBW treated 2,377 acres of floating aquatic vegetation and 1,405 acres of submersed aquatic vegetation. No mechanical harvesting was conducted. A combination of herbicide, biological, and mechanical control methods were used to help control invasive plants at high-priority sites in the Delta.

In 1982, California state legislation designated DBW as the lead state agency to cooperate with other state, local, and federal agencies in controlling water hyacinth in the Delta, its tributaries, and the SuisunMarsh. The Egeria Densa Control Program was authorized by law in 1997 and treatment began in 2001. In 2012, spongeplant was authorized for control upon completion of the biological assessment. In 2013, DBW was able to expand its jurisdiction to include other invasive aquatic plants, and since then other aquatic invasive plants such as Uruguay water primrose, Eurasian watermilfoil, Carolina fanwort, coontail, Alligator weed, and Ribbon weed have been added to the AIPCP program.

Revenues from boaters’ registration fees and gasoline taxes (Harbors and Watercraft RevolvingFund), provide funding for DBW’s Aquatic Invasive Plant Control Program.

Hernandez-Thorpe signs first-ever pledge towards a fossil-fuel free Antioch government

Wednesday, February 7th, 2024
Sources: Hernandez-Thorpe and Pacific Environment.

The pledge would reject any new, renewed public investments in gas or oil infrastructure in the city

“It does result in something if any of that comes about.” – Hernandez-Thorpe

Claims current atmospheric river storm is due to climate change caused by fossil fuel use

By Allen D. Payton

Today, Thursday, February 7, 2024, Antioch Mayor Lamar Hernandez-Thorpe made a world-leading commitment to reject public investments in new, renewed, fossil fuel infrastructure in Antioch and steer the city toward timely climate mitigation and resilience. 

“I’ve promised to address climate change head on,” saidHernadez-Thorpe. “We’ve ended oil and gas drilling in Antioch and, today, following a historic atmospheric river caused by climate change that has wreaked havoc across California, I have committed to end investing in new fossil fuel infrastructure. Moving away from fossil fuels will protect the health of our community, our air and water and leave a liveable planet for the next generation.”

Following the mayor’s press conference held earlier in the day, a press release on the matter was issue. It reads, “The pledge is a commitment to reject public investments in new, renewed or expanded fossil fuel infrastructure in the city of Antioch, CA. Fossil fuels are harming our families and communities. The average global temperature on Earth has irreversibly risen by at least 1.9 degrees Fahrenheit since 1880, with most of this increase occurring since 1975. Fossil fuels, including coal, oil and gas, are the largest contributor to global warming, accounting for 75% global greenhouse gas emissions and 90% of all carbon dioxide emissions.” 

“We applaud the city of Antioch’s first-ever commitment to rejecting new fossil fuel infrastructure,” said Dawny’all Heydari, Climate Campaign Manager, Advocacy for Pacific Environment, which works to protect people, wildlife and ecosystems around the Pacific Rim and the authors of the pledge. “The warnings from the international scientific community and recent catastrophic weather in California make clear that there is no time to waste in moving to a zero emissions world. We call on mayors across the United States and globally to follow Hernandez-Thorpe’s lead and say no to new fossil fuel buildouts.”

The press release further claims, “As a result of fossil-fueled global warming, Antioch will continue to experience longer, hotter and more common heatwaves, and increased flooding from increased chances of extreme precipitation and sea level rise.

In the last week, a historic atmospheric river made worse by the effects of the climate emergency has wreaked havoc on communities across California, causing at least 875,000 power outages, four deaths, record-breaking rain and flooding, and $11 billion in damages to homes and other property.”


By signing the pledge, the Mayor of the City of Antioch has committed to:

  1. Mitigate Climate Change: We will prioritize the adoption of clean energy solutions, such as renewable energy generation, energy efficiency measures, and sustainable transportation systems, to significantly reduce carbon emissions and promote a low-carbon future.
  2. Protect Public Health: By rejecting new fossil fuel infrastructure, we will improve air quality, reduce respiratory diseases, and promote a cleaner and safer environment for all, prioritizing the health and well-being of our residents.
  3. Foster Sustainable Economic Growth: We will stimulate economic growth and create new employment opportunities by investing in renewable energy projects, energy-efficient buildings, and innovative sustainable technologies, supporting local businesses and attracting green investments.
  4. Lead by Example: As city leaders, we commit to lead by example, demonstrating our commitment to climate action, inspiring other cities to follow suit, and contributing to the global effort to combat climate change.

Pacific Environment Rep, Hernandez-Thorpe Clarify His Pledge

Hernandez-Thorpe was asked what public investments and fossil fuel buildouts he is referring to, and if it’s the City’s gas pump used by the city-owned vehicles. Gwen Dobbs of Pacific Environment was asked the same question and passed them along to Heydari.

In response, the Climate Campaign Manager shared, “The mayor is committing to reject new, renewed or expanded public investments in the following fossil fuel infrastructure: oil and natural gas wells and drilling, coal mining, petroleum gas stations, bunkering facilities for ships and planes, power plants (including coal, oil, and natural gas), pipelines, oil refineries, transport terminals, natural gas processing plants, petrochemical plants and gas connections to new buildings.”

But while the city council can vote to approve or deny all those things, the City of Antioch has never invested in them, except for perhaps, possibly gas connections to new buildings that the city builds and owns. Hernandez-Thorpe, Heydari and Dobbs were then asked to further clarify the matter that if, by signing the pledge, the mayor is committing he will not vote to approve another home or commercial building in Antioch that has a connection to natural gas and that all new construction in Antioch must be all electric.

The mayor was also asked to further clarify what he’s committed to not doing and how far and wide the commitment reaches. Specifically, he was asked regarding “transport terminals” if he is also committing to not vote for a deepwater port along the Antioch shoreline if the ships that dock there use fossil fuels.

Challenged with the statement that the pledge really doesn’t mean anything in Antioch since the city doesn’t invest in the items listed, Hernandez-Thorpe provided clarity explaining, “It does result in something if any of that comes about. I would not support something like that. It doesn’t mean it can’t happen in Antioch.”

Speaking specifically about the City’s gas pump in the Maintenance Department’s yard he said, “We wouldn’t want to expand that. But we are working to expand to more charging stations and converting the city’s fleet to all electric. That’s the most obvious example. Our best option was to purchase hybrid vehicles for now, because the supply chain was preventing going all electric, which are matters beyond our control. We have to live in reality.”

Regarding the transport terminals, Hernandez-Thorpe said, “This wouldn’t preclude a deepwater port. What the pledge states is that there are fueling stations for ships. But we’re not stopping a deepwater port from being approved.”

“Our goal is to transition from this but not leave workers behind. There needs to be a balance,” he added.

Follows Other Actions Opposed to Oil and Gas Issues in Antioch

Today’s actions follow two others he has supported to reduce dependence on fossil fuels. In 2021, the mayor, following the lead of current Mayor Pro Tem and District 4 Councilwoman Monica Wilson and joined by District 1 Councilwoman Tamisha Torres-Walker, voted, in a split council action, to not renew the franchise agreement with the company that owns the natural gas pipeline that runs beneath the city. As a result, the pipeline owner, California Resources Production Corporation is suing the city costing thousands in fees to contract attorneys. CALIFORNIA RESOURCES PRODUCTION CORPORATION vs CITY OF ANTIOCH

In 2022, the council voted unanimously to ban future oil and gas drilling in the city, which does not prevent the only person who currently owns drilling rights in Antioch from doing so.

Delta Levees Investment Strategy becomes California state law

Thursday, January 4th, 2024
California Delta levee work. Photo: Delta Stewardship Council

New flood-related regulations prioritize levee investments in the Delta and Suisun Marsh

By Delta Stewardship Council

SACRAMENTO – The new year has brought new flood protections for the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta. The Delta Stewardship Council has successfully amended the Delta Levees Investment Strategy (DLIS), a tool the state uses to prioritize investments in Delta levee operations, maintenance and improvements, thus reducing the likelihood and consequences of levee failures.

The amendment assigns very high, high, or other priority to islands or tracts within the Delta and Suisun Marsh and directs the California Department of Water Resources (DWR) to fund levee improvement projects by order of priority. Additionally, it requires the DWR to submit an annual report to the Council describing Delta levee investments relative to the established priorities. The amended regulation took effect on January 1, 2024.

Executive Officer Jessica R. Pearson at a Delta Stewardship Council meeting. Photo: DSC

“Delta flood risk is one of the most urgent threats to California and will continue to worsen in the future with changes in sea levels and storm patterns,” says the Council’s Executive Officer Jessica R. Pearson. “Limited funding to address that risk demands clear priorities. The product of nearly a decade of public input and collaboration, the strategy represents one of the Council’s greatest milestone achievements.”

The amendment assigns very high, high, or other priority to islands or tracts within the Delta and Suisun Marsh and directs the California Department of Water Resources (DWR) to fund levee improvement projects by order of priority. Additionally, it requires the DWR to submit an annual report to the Council describing Delta levee investments relative to the established priorities.

“Flood protection is a key piece of DWR’s work to increase water resilience as California moves toward a hotter, drier future,” says DWR Director Karla Nemeth. “DWR stands in partnership with the Delta Stewardship Council across multiple initiatives, including the Delta Levees Investment Strategy. These efforts will provide needed protections to the diverse communities that call the Delta home.”

The Dutch Slough Tidal Marsh Restoration Project site, located in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta near Oakley, California. The restoration project implemented by the California Department of Water Resources will restore 1,187 acres into a tidal marsh to provide habitat for salmon and other native fish and wildlife. Photo taken May 18, 2023, by Florence Low / California Department of Water Resources.

The Delta’s 1,100 miles of levees provide protection for residences, agricultural lands, and infrastructure, which need deliberate and sustainable maintenance and funding. Many of the levees date back to when the Delta was reclaimed for agricultural purposes in the late 1800s.

The updated strategy prioritizes the protection of people, property, and state interests and advances statewide water supply reliability and Delta ecosystem resilience in a manner that protects and enhances the Delta as a place where people live, work and recreate.

Source: DSC

On September 21, 2023, the Office of Administrative Law approved the Council’s Administrative Procedure Act process to amend the California Code of Regulations, title 23, sections 5001 and 5012, to implement the Council’s Delta Levees Investment Strategy. The amended regulation took effect on January 1, 2024, and is available at on the Delta Levees Investment Strategy web page at


The Delta Stewardship Council was created by the California Legislature in 2009 to advance California’s water supply reliability and the Delta’s ecosystem resiliency in a manner that protects and enhances the region’s unique characteristics. It is composed of seven members, advised by an independent 10-member science board, and supported by a dedicated staff. For more information, visit the Council’s website at

Visuals of the Delta can be found in DWR’s photo galleries (

For more information, contact

Delta Conveyance (tunnel) Project issues Final Environmental Impact Report

Friday, December 8th, 2023
Source: CA DWP

Haga clic aquí para ver este aviso en español

To public agencies prior to certification per CEQA requirements

By California Department of Water Resources

The California Department of Water Resources (DWR) is today releasing the Final Environmental Impact Report to public agencies that commented on the Draft EIR, per the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA).* Proposed responses to comments, as well as the Final EIR and accompanying informational resources, can be accessed at This action signifies the last step DWR is required to take under CEQA prior to deciding whether to certify the EIR and approve the proposed project.

The Final EIR was prepared by DWR as the lead agency to comply with the requirements of CEQA. The Final EIR is presented in two volumes: 1) the contents of the entire Draft EIR, as revised, and 2) all comments received on the Draft EIR and responses to substantive comments. 

At the conclusion of the CEQA process, DWR will determine if the Final EIR has been completed in compliance with CEQA and whether to certify that the Final EIR reflects DWR’s independent judgment and analysis. Following certification of the Final EIR, DWR would then determine whether to approve the proposed project, an alternative or no project. Learn more about the CEQA process here.

The proposed project identified in the Final EIR would modernize the state’s water infrastructure in the Delta to help protect the reliability of this important water supply for 27 million Californians and 750,000 acres of farmland from earthquakes and climate-driven weather extremes. 

Accessing the Final EIR

The Final EIR is available online at

Informational Materials and Resources

Project Planning Next Steps

  • Community Benefits Program: Should DWR certify the Final EIR and approve the proposed project, DWR plans to release the Community Benefits Program Implementation Plan and Guidelines Discussion Document next year for review. There will be associated public engagement opportunities announced when that document is released. 
  • Additional Permitting: DWR continues to pursue additional required federal and state planning processes, including but not limited to federal and state Endangered Species Act compliance, adding points of diversion to existing water rights and Delta Plan consistency. Information and updates related to these processes can be found on the project’s permit portal website
    *DWR is releasing the Final EIR to public agencies prior to certification per CEQA requirements. While CEQA does not require—and DWR is not providing—a public comment period on a Final EIR, it does require DWR to send its proposed responses at least 10 days prior to a decision on certification of the EIR.

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East Bay Parks use groundbreaking technology to reduce wildfire risks

Saturday, October 28th, 2023
As part of fuels reduction work for fire suppression a tree is removed then burned in a low-emission Tigercat 6050 carbonator machine, resulting in biochar used to enrich soil in the East Bay parks. Photos: EBRPD

Thinking Outside the Box: Leading the Way on Wildfire Protection for the Community

By Dave Mason, Public Information Supervisor, East Bay Regional Park District

The East Bay Regional Park District held a special briefing and tour at Anthony Chabot Regional Park on Tuesday, Oct. 24, 2023, highlighting a first-of-its-kind fuels reduction project (365 acres) in the East Bay hills. The Park District’s wildfire fuels reduction project uses an innovative and climate-friendly carbonator to dispose of vegetation with extremely low emissions, rather than conventional open-pile burning or transporting it long distances in diesel trucks.

In the fall of 2020, while conducting ongoing vegetation management work, Park District staff noticed significant tree die-off in its parks. Further investigation identified over 1,500 acres of tree mortality within Regional Parks, mostly eucalyptus, but also bay and pine. While there are many contributing factors, the overarching cause is believed to be drought-stress due to climate change.

“We were facing a crisis,” said Park District General Manager Sabrina B. Landreth. “I directed staff to assess the situation quickly and come together with a plan of action, including obtaining the necessary funding to begin addressing the die-off.”

The Park District spans Alameda and Contra Costa counties in the San Francisco Bay Area and manages 73 parks, 1,330 miles of trails, and over 125,000 acres. The District has its own fire department and fuels management crew.

“As the largest regional park district of its kind in the nation and a local wildfire prevention leader, we knew we needed to lead the way in finding solutions,” added Landreth.

Much of the identified tree die-off was within the Park District’s approved Wildfire Hazard Mitigation and Resource Management Plan, which meant environmental approvals for fuels reduction work were already in place. However, significant funding was needed.

In 2021, shortly after discovery of tree die-off, the District approached state officials for help addressing the situation, and the state responded with a critical $10 million direct appropriation from the legislature through Senator Nancy Skinner, D-Berkeley, and then-Senator Bob Wieckowski, D-Fremont. The total cost estimate to address the tree die-off issue is over $30 million.

 “For a public agency to get a $10 million direct appropriation in the state budget for a specific purpose is extraordinary,” said Landreth.

Groundbreaking, Environmentally Friendly Tool for Fuels Reduction

As efforts to secure funding proceeded, estimates also soared for removal costs and the amount of organic material (biomass) that would need to be disposed of. Adding to the complexity of the situation was the fact that removing so much dead and dying vegetation by traditional means required hauling it in trucks to plants that would burn it for fuel. Transporting the dead trees was cost-prohibitive, disruptive to the residential areas, and potentially dangerous. It would also create greenhouse gases and pollution, causing some of the same environmental factors leading to increasing wildfire risks and perhaps even tree die-off itself.

The innovative solution the Park District found for processing large amounts of biomass was a carbonator. The carbonator machine, a Tigercat 6050, resembles a trucking container with a box-like metal chamber. The device burns organic matter with very little oxygen and at very high temperatures (about 1,300 degrees Fahrenheit), which breaks down the molecules of organic matter into a smaller material called biochar. The process creates extremely low emissions.

The resulting biochar – essentially elemental carbon – provides benefits, such as enriching soil by improving its water retention or pH, accelerating composting of green waste, and filtering toxins from water. The carbonator, having never been used in a metropolitan area for biomass disposal at this scale, was tested as part of an 80-acre pilot project at Anthony Chabot Regional Park in 2022, with the lessons learned being shared with the state and other partner agencies facing similar challenges. When completed in March 2023, the pilot project proved to be a net positive, with only a tiny fraction of emissions compared to open-pile burning or hauling off-site.

“As a large regional park district with a full-time fire department and biologists and ecologists on staff, we can do work that other agencies can’t,” said Park District Fire Chief Aileen Theile.

“The carbonator is another tool for our toolbox to reduce wildfire risks and combat climate change. Going forward, up to half of the biomass removed from parks could be converted into biochar,” said Park District Assistant Fire Chief Khari Helae.

Based on the success of the pilot project, a major fuels reduction project is underway at Anthony Chabot Regional Park on 365 acres and including the use of a carbonator for biomass disposal. The project is using $7.5 million of the $10 million direct appropriation from the state legislature, plus federal funds of $1.5 million secured by U.S. Senator Alex Padilla (D-Calif.).

The 365-acre project currently underway at Anthony Chabot Regional Park involves heavy equipment, including a felling team removing trees from the top down and a mastication team thinning vegetation and trees from the ground up. The resulting biochar is being used at the Park District’s Ardenwood Farms in Fremont to enhance soil health, improve water retention, and ultimately increase productivity.

The innovative, strong partnership approach to securing funding, the use of the carbonator in a pilot project and its subsequent use in a large-scale effort to reduce wildfire danger, and our desire to find a sustainable science-based solution in East Bay Regional Parks “is being seen as a model statewide, as well as nationally,” said Landreth.

“By doing this work now, we will gain a more sustainable eco-system in the long-term to benefit generations to come. We are working and planning for both now and the future, and we’re committed to playing the long game,” said Landreth.

The Park District’s leadership team, firefighters, scientists, park rangers, and dedicated staff across departments continue to focus on wildfire mitigation strategies and the innovative, large-scale fuels management program, all while seeking new partnerships and ways to protect the community.

Read the full-length feature article at

The East Bay Regional Park District is the largest regional park system in the nation, comprising 73 parks, 55 miles of shoreline, and over 1,300 miles of trails for hiking, biking, horseback riding, and environmental education. The Park District receives more than 25 million visits annually throughout Alameda and Contra Costa counties in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Drafts of Contra Costa County General Plan and Climate Action Plan available for public review

Wednesday, October 25th, 2023

By Contra Costa County Department of Conservation and Development

From land use and housing to climate change and environmental justice, residents are invited to explore drafts of the General Plan and Climate Action Plan to ensure they reflect the community’s collective aspirations for Contra Costa County’s future.

View the plans and provide comments on the project website at through Jan. 31, 2024. 

The Public Review Draft of the Contra Costa County 2045 General Plan is the County’s primary policy tool to guide physical changes in the unincorporated areas over the next 20 years. It serves as the basis for planning- and infrastructure-related decisions made by County staff and decision makers. It is built around the themes of environmental justice, community health, economic development, and sustainability.

“Our General Plan establishes the policies that will move us towards a more equitable, healthier, safer and stronger future,” said John Gioia, Chair of the Board of Supervisors. “Public participation and input is vital in creating sound policy and guiding our public decisions on the issues that impact every facet of our lives.”

The Public Review Draft Climate Action Plan 2024 Update is the County’s strategic plan to reduce greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) and to adapt to changing climate conditions, such as extreme heat, flooding, droughts, and wildfires, in the unincorporated areas of the County. The 2024 Climate Action Plan implements the General Plan policy guidance and addresses behaviors, regulations, and investment decisions that directly reduce GHG emissions or promote climate resilience.

Community feedback has been the driving force behind these planning efforts. County staff have held over 130 meetings with community members, advocates, stakeholders, and officials. This collaborative effort, including almost 50 community meetings and over 20 with community-based organizations, has shaped the shared vision for Contra Costa County.

Recent Delta earthquakes reminder of modernizing water infrastructure’s vital importance

Monday, October 23rd, 2023
Source: CA DWR

One large quake last Wednesday, two more smaller quakes on Monday

By CA Department of Water Resources

News of yet another earthquake in the heart of the Delta in the last week is a serious reminder about the importance of modernizing and protecting water supply infrastructure. The quake on Wednesday, Oct. 18th measured 4.2 and was centered 5 kilometers southwest of Isleton.

Two more quakes measuring 2.9 magnitude and 2.5 mag, with epicenters 4 km southeast of Rio Vista, occurred on Monday, Oct. 23, according to the US Geological Survey (USGS).

In a report by CBS News last week, Austin Elliott with the USGS said that “a very large earthquake, centered near the Delta, would pose a particularly significant threat to both protective systems that the levees provide, as well as the water distribution and intake systems.”

He also said that “Larger earthquakes magnitude — five or six — would begin to produce liquefaction and damage some of the infrastructure and geotechnical work there.” And according to the USGS, there is a 72 percent chance of a 6.7 or greater magnitude earthquake occurring in the Bay Area by 2043.

The Delta Conveyance Project is meant to help the State Water Project guard against these seismic threats.

DWR has also invested millions of dollars to reinforce many Delta levees through the Delta Levees Special Flood Control Projects programs. Additionally, DWR has been planning for and strategizing how to address the earthquake risk and potential disruption to California’s water supply and has developed detailed plans to guide response and recovery efforts.

For more information on how the proposed Delta Conveyance Project would make California’s water supply more earthquake resilient, check out this digital article and these two in-depth videos (Part 1 and Part 2). 

Allen D. Payton contributed to this report.

Join Save Mount Diablo at Party for the Planet benefit bash Nov. 11

Tuesday, October 17th, 2023

By Laura Kindsvater, Senior Communications Manager,  Save Mount Diablo

LAFAYETTE, CA—Grab your kids, grandparents and dancing shoes and come on down to Creekside Commons in Lafayette at 6 PM on Saturday, November 11th to Party for the Planet! This fun and lively event is a benefit to support the great work of Save Mount Diablo.

Blue-Eyed Grass, Save Mount Diablo’s house band, will open the show. Later in the evening the Jim Ocean Band will treat the audience to a live performance of their new album, “FrankenClime”—a humor-infused, danceable rock ‘n’ roll monster mash spotlighting the environmental challenges of the times.

Blue-Eyed Grass

Date: Saturday, November 11, 2023

Time: 6:00 PM Doors, 6:45 PM Show

Location: Creekside Commons, 1035 Carol Lane, Lafayette

Admission: $20 adv/$25 door—Ages 18 and under are FREE


Information for the public:

In addition to the music this action-packed event includes a “Trashy Fashion” runway show produced by Ellie Treanor and RC Ferris. Guests are encouraged to join the fun by wearing their best upcycled/re-designed clothing or homemade costumes sourced from recycled materials.

Plan to arrive at 6 PM to make a trashy fashion accessory—a favorite activity for kids and the young at heart alike. Learn more about Save Mount Diablo and Sustainable Walnut Creek. A selection of vendors will showcase their services or sell their unique “sustainability products,” plus MCE will be on hand to provide education about clean energy options.  

Premium beer and wine, and yummy snacks and desserts will be available for sale, courtesy of Sustainable Contra Costa.

Plan to bring something for the sustainability-in-action “Bring an item, take an item” table—a fun way to upcycle a like-new, no-longer-needed household item or an unwanted gift you’ve been holding onto—and perhaps leave with a new treasure of your own.

Jim Ocean Band

This is your chance to Party for the Planet while supporting the good work of Save Mount Diablo. 

Everyone who buys a ticket in advance will be entered into a drawing for a special “Discover Diablo Experience” led by Save Mount Diablo Executive Director Ted Clement. The lucky winner will be treated to a hike on stunningly beautiful lands not yet open to the public that includes a delicious picnic lunch on a ridgeline with impressive views of the eastern side of Mount Diablo.

Buy your tickets now at! (Ages 18 and under are FREE.)

This concert is part of the band’s “Fossil Fools Tour” in support of the FrankenClime project.

This benefit is made possible by the generosity of our sponsors. Sincere thanks to MCE and Sustainable Walnut Creek.

About Jim Ocean Music

Over the decades, singer/songwriter Jim Ocean has written an impressive collection of thought-provoking, genre-bending songs that explore the nuances and quirks of the human animal. With his new band, he has turned his eye toward the environmental challenges of the day. With soulful harmonies and a tight, driving rhythm section, the Jim Ocean Band has come out swinging with its debut album, “FrankenClime.” Featuring concerned, smart lyrics set to a beat, the in-your-face energy and contagious hooks have audiences dancing, laughing, and thinking all at the same time. As much about the mission as the music, the Jim Ocean Band welcomes collaborations and is available to produce benefit concerts for social justice and environmental organizations. See more information about the band at

Why this music and why now? Because the Earth needs a good garage band!

About Blue-Eyed Grass

Blue-Eyed Grass is Save Mount Diablo’s house band, made up of Ted Clement, Save Mount Diablo Executive Director; John Gallagher, Save Mount Diablo Board member; and Bob Loomis, Dave Schneider, and Rich Silveira, all Save Mount Diablo supporters.

About Save Mount Diablo

Save Mount Diablo is a nationally accredited, nonprofit land trust founded in 1971 with a mission to preserve Mount Diablo’s peaks, surrounding foothills, watersheds, and connection to the Diablo Range through land acquisition and preservation strategies designed to protect the mountain’s natural beauty, biological diversity, and historic and agricultural heritage; enhance our area’s quality of life; and provide educational and recreational opportunities consistent with protection of natural resources. To learn more, please visit