Agricultural water districts are striking back at what they say is an historic water heist by the City of Bakersfield.
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.
A selection of quotes from the Kern County Superior Court’s ruling granting a preliminary injunction in Bring Back The Kern v Bakersfield.
“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.
Finding that Plaintiffs’ are likely to succeed on the merits of their claim, and after weighing potential harms to the respective parties in this case, the Court concluded that the California Legislature has already considered competing uses of water when it passed Fish and Game Code, section 5937 and thus determined that enough water must be allowed to remain in a waterway, that at a minimum, keeps fish in good condition.
“An environmental advocate who filed a claim against the city of St. Helena in May has now sued the city for allegedly failing to bypass enough water into Bell Creek. According to a lawsuit filed Aug. 10 in Napa Superior Court by Water Audit California, the city has violated state regulatory limits on the diversion …