“We can do better. We must do better”
article also acknowledges, “Competing demands for Delta water include flows for
native fish, water supply for farms and cities, and cold water held back in
large reservoirs to cool salmon streams.”
The following passages attempt
to quote and/or paraphrase the article:
water is limited, there are inevitable trade-offs. This is where science and
too long, this tension has been handled one species at a time, one crisis at a
time, and usually in court. This has fostered ‘combat science,’ where
regulatory agencies, water contractors, and environmental advocates line up
their own hypotheses, studies, and conclusions like artillery in the courtroom.
It has fed distrust and stymied collaboration. This is a failed approach.
a change in how we manage the Delta, there is no evidence to suggest the
situation will improve. We can do better. We must do better.
Delta Conservation Plan (BDCP) takes a more comprehensive approach than the
single-species management pursuant to the U.S. Endangered Species Act.
a commitment to a more robust and collaborative science program is also emerging
between many of the long-term litigants and between several state and federal
agencies involved in the Delta.
of these positive developments involve a fundamental shift in the way water
agencies and regulators interact. Different sides may have different policy
overlays, but the science will be the science.
has to be a better way than arguing about science while species continue to
decline and water supply reliability is jeopardized.
better way starts with applying state-of-the-art scientific approaches, models,
and tools. The BDCP sets forth a three-step "decision tree" process
to help resolve disagreements over the recovery of longfin smelt requires.
decision tree is nothing new: In simplest terms, it is a chart that maps
successive decision points over time.
all, we will learn by doing, and evaluate our progress in a structured way. We
will measure success by assessing how well stakeholders are meaningfully
engaged and committed to the process; by generating science that all agree is
sound; by making progress toward achieving the biological objectives; and, by
determining how well results from the science research are used to adjust and
improve management decisions.
we can achieve these measures of success, we may be able to avoid the courts and
use our best available science to give ourselves a firmer footing for balancing
and managing the Delta's co-equal goals.
This work is made available under the terms of the Creative Commons
Attribution in the San Francisco Estuary and Watershed Science,
11(3), by Mark W., Cowin, California Department of Water Resources, and
Charlton H. Bonham, California Department of Fish and Wildlife. Copyright 2013
by the article author(s).
Delta Science Program. 2013.
Delta Stewardship Counci.
Labels: Collaboration, sound science to keep delta water out of court, we can do better.We must do better. Longfin smelt and a case study in Collaborative Science