Agricultural water districts are striking back at what they say is an historic water heist by the City of Bakersfield.
“The judge has now signed an order that would require the city to keep at least 40% of the river flowing.”
A Kern County Superior Court Judge signed an order that requires 40% of the Kern River’s flow to remain in the river to keep fish populations healthy.
A judge has granted a preliminary injunction preventing water diversions that would dry up the river, requiring sufficient water to provide for fish and keep the Kern flowing in the city.
A Kern County judge has approved a preliminary injunction, to limit the amount of water from the Kern River the city of Bakersfield can use. The injunction will prevent the now-flowing Kern River from returning to the dry state it was in last year.
Monday’s ruling prohibits the city from implementing diversions that reduce river flows below the volume necessary to maintain good condition for fish.
Full text of the Kern County Superior Court’s ruling granting a preliminary injunction that prevents the City of Bakersfield from making diversions in a manner that habitually dries the Kern River.
“In a win for environmental groups, a California state court judge on Monday temporarily blocked Bakersfield from reducing water flow on the Kern River.”
In what one attorney called a “moment of truth” for the City of Bakersfield, a judge ordered the city to keep enough water in the normally dry Kern River to protect fish populations.
“A Kern County judge has granted a preliminary injunction in a lawsuit by citizen water advocacy groups, filed against the City of Bakersfield and its water usage. To ensure protection of fish and other river wildlife, the city is prohibited from using more water than it needs.”
“A Kern County Superior Court judge is considering whether to issue an injunction that would prevent the city of Bakersfield from distributing water in the Kern River until the lawsuit is settled.”
“A Kern County judge heard arguments Friday in a case targeting water flows in the Kern River and whether they’re sufficient to support its fish.”
“Kern County Superior Court Judge Gregory Pulskamp came back several times during an Oct. 13 hearing to what he saw as a “major issue” in the dispute over keeping water in the Kern River – its plumbing.”
“The courtroom is where most water policy gets decided, and if we want our river to have water, then we, the average citizens of Bakersfield, have to go to court, too.”
On August 10, 2023 a coalition of community advocacy groups filed a motion for a preliminary injunction to return a living river to the City of Bakersfield. The litigation proposes a community alternative will maintain both river and irrigation flows by relocating diversions to downstream of the City.
Six environmental groups sued the city of Bakersfield, saying that continuing to allow diversions of water upstream from the city harms the environment and the community.
Water Audit California has filed suit against the Merced Irrigation District demanding repair and maintained of a neglected fish ladder at Crocker-Huffman Dam.
Water Audit California sent a letter to the Bakersfield Water Resources Department demanding the city conduct a study of how its diversions from the river are impacting the public trust and determine ways to avoid those impacts.
“The Lake Marie reservoir, created in the late 19th century as part of a Napa State Hospital water mini-empire, might in the 21st century help locally rare steelhead trout. Water Audit California has used lawsuits to try to gain more water from local reservoirs for downstream fish habitat. In this case, the California Department of …
A settlement agreement ending litigation between the California Department of State Hospitals and Water Audit California that was announced today will improve conditions for fish in Cayetano Creek while allowing Skyline Park visitors to continue to enjoy Lake Marie as a hiking destination. This resolution is representative of two principles: we can manage what we measure, and we can always do better. This settlement is the next step in Water Audit’s Napa Valley remediation program that has so far included securing dam bypasses from Kimball, Rector, Bell Canyon dams, and the removal of obstructions to spawning in Garnet and York Creeks.
The American Bar Association’s Natural Resources & Environment vol 36 no 1 contained “Rewatering Napa’s Rivers” by Karrigan Bork and Amber Manfree. The article describes the history of California’s legislative efforts to protect fisheries, the structural failures which led to non-enforcement, and the role of private entities like Water Audit in effecting the will of …
A week ago, we filed a lawsuit against the County of Napa for Negligent Breach of Trustee Duties and related issues. We’ve decided to publish the full text so you can read our reasons for yourselves.
Water Audit California is pleased to announce that our inspectors have observed water flowing at the site of the recently-removed York Creek dam in Napa. Local authorities had stalled on the court-ordered removal of this dam for a decade until WAC began enforcement action in 2017. Removal activities began earlier this summer and WAC can confirm that the passage is now clear in time for winter rains.
“Water Audit cannot, however, remain silent about the proposed Ordinance, as that legislation that appears to pose a direct threat to interests of the public trust. Recent events and research have elevated our concerns to outright alarm. …We see no discussion in the Board of Supervisor’s record of the impact that these identified new demands …
Water Audit California has filed suit against the Nevada Irrigation District’s Hemphill Diversion Facility (Hemphill Dam) alleging it “is an unlawful stream obstruction and an unlawful manner of diversion”.