SCH Number 2020050219
- Delta Plan Ecosystem Amendment Draft Program Environmental Impact Report
- In November 2009, the California Legislature enacted Senate Bill X7 1, one of several bills passed at that time related to water supply reliability, ecosystem health, and the Sacramento–San Joaquin Delta and Suisun Marsh (Delta) (defined in Water Code [Wat. Code] section 85058). This new law took effect on February 3, 2010, and included the Sacramento–San Joaquin Delta Reform Act of 2009 (Delta Reform Act), codified in Wat. Code division 35, section 85000 et seq. The Delta Reform Act establishes the Delta Stewardship Council (Council) as an independent agency of the State of California (State) and requires the Council to develop and adopt the Delta Plan, a legally enforceable, comprehensive, long-term management plan for the Delta to achieve the coequal goals (Wat. Code sections 85001(c), 85059, and 85200(a)). As defined in Wat. Code section 85054: Coequal goals means the two goals of providing a more reliable water supply for California and protecting, restoring and enhancing the Delta ecosystem. The coequal goals shall be achieved in a manner that protects and enhances the unique cultural, recreational, natural resource and agricultural values of the Delta as an evolving place. The Council adopted the Delta Plan in 2013. The Delta Reform Act requires the Council to review the Delta Plan at least once every 5 years and revise it as the Council deems appropriate (Wat. Code section 85300(c)). When the Delta Plan was adopted, the Council anticipated periodic reviews of the Delta Plan and potential need for updates in response to changing circumstances and conditions in the Delta. The purpose of the proposed amendment to Chapter 4, Protect, Restore, and Enhance the Delta Ecosystem, of the Delta Plan (proposed Ecosystem Amendment or Proposed Project) is to address shifts in how conservation is being planned and implemented in the Delta. The Proposed Project consists of new and revised Delta Plan policies, recommendations, and performance measures in Chapter 4 of the Delta Plan related to ecosystem protection, restoration, and enhancement in the Delta. In addition, the Proposed Project includes removal of some existing recommendations and performance measures. Chapter 4 of the Delta Plan implements Wat. Code section 85022(d) and sections 85302(a), 85302(b), 85302(c), 85302(d)(1), 85302(d)(3), and 85302(e), which provide direction on implementing specific measures to promote the coequal goal of protecting, restoring, and enhancing the Delta ecosystem (Wat. Code section 85054) and the inherent objectives of that coequal goal. The coequal goal of protecting, restoring, and enhancing the Delta ecosystem is consistent with the Public Trust Doctrine and, among other things, promotes and protects fishing, recreational, and ecological public trust uses in the Delta watershed. In addition, pursuant to Wat. Code sections 85211 and 85308(b) through (d), ecosystem performance measures in Appendix E of the Delta Plan enable the Delta Stewardship Council (Council) to track progress in meeting the objectives of the Delta Plan. The Council proposes to amend Delta Plan Appendix E to refine or remove existing performance measures and add new performance measures associated with proposed new and revised policies and recommendations in Chapter 4 of the Delta Plan.
3 documents in project