Gov. Gavin Newsom has consistently expressed support for successful completion of voluntary agreements as a path forward in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Bay-Delta. The California Natural Resources Agency and California Environmental Protection Agency recently described collaborative, voluntary agreements as a “game changer” for the environment. We strongly agree, and stand ready in bringing proactive decision makers to the table for the management of water in the Delta and its tributaries.
We are on the brink of a historic accomplishment in California water to resolve longstanding conflicts through comprehensive voluntary agreements that substitute collaboration and creative solutions for perpetual litigation. For anyone to abandon this transformative effort in favor of litigation would be a tragic mistake that could cost the state a rare opportunity to realize a comprehensive investment in multi-beneficial assets for the environment.
The superior alternative to litigation is collaboration, one that manifests itself through a remarkable coalition that includes the Newsom Administration, California’s State Legislature, members of Congress, landowners and farmers, state and federal agencies, and local water agencies. Supporters of this collaborative approach include our respective organizations: the Association of California Water Agencies, representing more than 450 public water agencies, and conservation groups such as Ducks Unlimited, the world’s leader in wetlands conservation.