Species by species, system by system

Dennis Wyatt, in the Manteca Bulletin, points to some intriguing language in the California Delta Protection Commission’s recent draft Economic Sustainability Plan (linked here) regarding my current hobby horse – the shortcomings of the Endangered Species Act as an environmental protection tool/water management tool:

While a $12 billion investment in isolated conveyance may allow for somewhat larger water exports, it doesn’t protect other critical infrastructure and billions in additional investments would still be required to protect highways, energy, and other water and transportation infrastructure. Just as a species by species approach is an inefficient and ineffective way to protect ecosystems, a system by system approach is an inefficient and ineffective way to protect the state’s infrastructure. (emphasis added)


  1. Thought of you as soon as I read this.

    But isn’t it surprising that the DPC folks chose to emphasize the problems of a piecemeal ESA process? And as an analogy no less!

    I don’t get it. It is arguable that that process, wrong or right, has aligned with their interests more than pretty much any other CA water constituency.

  2. Meh. That’s what the NEPA/CEQA process is for. (I suspect also that it’s a stalking horse for building a cross-delta pipeline instead of a circum-delta canal. The pipeline will need to be solidly entrenched. That route can then support highways, railways and other hard infrastructure.)

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