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Governor Brown says construction of Delta tunnels "will serve California for hundreds of years"
Sacramento - San Joaquin Delta
For the second straight year, improvements to the state's water delivery system and the restoration of the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta were identified as top priorities by Gov. Jerry Brown during his State of the State address today before a joint session of the California Legislature.
During his address, Brown estimated California could lose $100 billion and 40,000 jobs if the fragile levees in the Delta failed because of an earthquake, a hundred-year storm or sea level rise.
"I am going to do whatever I can to make sure that does not happen," Brown said.
"My proposed plan is two tunnels 30 miles long and 40 feet wide, designed to improve the ecology of the Delta, with almost 100 square miles of habitat restoration," the governor said referring to the Bay Delta Conservation Plan.
The tunnel project, Brown said, "will serve California for hundreds of years."
Brown's speech was well received by California's water community. Metropolitan General Manager Jeffrey Kightlinger said, "Gov. Brown's solid commitment to addressing our water supply and environmental issues is precisely what we need at this critical time.
"California's long-term water problems cannot be solved without the vision and leadership from the state and federal governments," Kightlinger said.
Located at the confluence of the Sacramento and San Joaquin rivers, the Delta provides about 30 percent of Southern California's water and is a vital supply for the Bay Area and communities and farms throughout the Central Valley. The draft plan calls for one of the nation's largest habitat restoration efforts ever attempted as well as constructing two tunnels to deliver water through the Delta.
Later this year, state and federal resource agencies plan to release draft environmental documents of the BDCP for public review.
State Water Contractors, statement by General Manager Terry Erlewine; Gov. Brown Calls for Delta Fix in 2013
Statement by Southern California Water Committee Executive Director Richard Atwater
Los Angeles Times
"California did the impossible," Brown says in State of the State
Orange County Register
Gov. Brown promotes optimistic vision of California
Jerry Brown says California has "confounded our critics"
San Francisco Chronicle
Upbeat Jerry Brown on State of the State: "California on the move"
San Jose Mercury News
State of the State: Gov. Jerry Brown congratulates voters for embracing optimism
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