Uncertain Future for $17 Billion Delta Tunnels Project After Water Districts Pull Support

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An aerial view of the San Joaquin/Sacramento River delta. (Photo: California Department of Water Resources)

Gov. Jerry Brown's $17 billion plan to construct two massive tunnels below the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta fell into more doubt last week, as the Santa Clara Valley Water District voted for a more limited, one-tunnel plan. The vote followed a rejection of the plan last month by the Central Valley's Westlands Water District. Backers of the project, officially known as "California WaterFix," say it would stabilize and improve water delivery across the state. But opponents say the tunnels are too costly and will harm the estuary and the fish that depend on it. We discuss the future of the project.


John Laird, secretary, California Natural Resources Agency

Paul Rogers,  managing editor, KQED Science; environment writer, The Mercury News