Flood Planning?

It’s difficult to see any comprehensive examination of that in this article from the Sacramento Bee since it doesn’t even mention the most effective flood/water management system; large dams that hold back the water during wet years for release during dry.

While all the programs mentioned in the article are good ones, nothing addresses the fact in the first paragraph “the Central Valley will suffer a catastrophic flood” better than big dams providing the multi-benefits of flood protection, water storage, and clean hydro-power.

We’ve posted on this previously, here is one from May, 2012.

An excerpt from the Bee article.

“The first rain reminds us that flood season is around the corner. Serious floods are infrequent and unpredictable, but the state of California prepares for the next flood 365 days a year. Scientists and engineers agree that the question is not if the Central Valley will suffer a catastrophic flood, but when.

“The California Department of Water Resources and the Central Valley Flood Protection Board recently adopted a plan aimed at revamping the Central Valley flood management system. Financing and implementing the plan will require an extraordinary level of cooperation, not only among various interest groups, but also among the numerous agencies charged with managing rivers and land use of Central Valley floodplains. Funding is limited, and each agency is charged with advancing different priorities including public safety, economic development, recreation, water supply, and fish and wildlife habitat.

“To advance all these different priorities, where possible we must design investments to achieve multiple benefits. The state cannot afford single-purpose projects, particularly when they come at the expense of other important objectives. Several multiple-benefit projects planned or under way in the Central Valley serve as models.

“The Yolo Bypass is one of the nation’s best examples of integrated flood management. For nearly a century, this swath of floodplain has effectively protected Sacramento from flooding while supporting important agricultural, fisheries, waterfowl, recreational and educational opportunities.

“On the Knaggs Ranch in the upper Yolo Bypass, a team of scientists from the University of California, Davis, and several agencies are partnering with a rice farmer to learn more about the habitat flooded rice fields provide for juvenile salmon. The first year of the study produced some of the largest juvenile salmon ever measured in the Valley, bolstering the hypothesis that access to a floodplain is important to sustaining salmon populations. The effort will eventually connect flooded rice fields to the Sacramento River.”

About David H Lukenbill

I am a native of Sacramento, as are my wife and daughter. I am a consultant to nonprofit organizations, and have a Bachelor of Science degree in Organizational Behavior and a Master of Public Administration degree, both from the University of San Francisco. We live along the American River with two cats and all the wild critters we can feed. I am the founding president of the American River Parkway Preservation Society and currently serve as the CFO and Senior Policy Director. I also volunteer as the President of The Lampstand Foundation, a nonprofit organization I founded in 2003.
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