Delta Stewardship Council's Delta Plan


Windsurfers in the Delta watch a humpback whale calf suddenly breach nearby.

Courtesy of Wood Hole Oceanographic Institute, Photo by Sarah Wilkin, NOAA.

The Delta Stewardship Council was authorized by the California state legislature in 2009 and is tasked with developing a Delta Plan. From a larger perspective, the council’s primary responsibilities are protecting the water, economy, ecosystems, fisheries and wildlife of the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta by meeting the co-equal goals of water supply reliability and ecosystem protection. 

The council is a critical player in state water policy, particularly in regard to Delta diversions and outflow. Former Executive Director Joe Grindstaff outlined the council’s authority and described its “robust” role in California water issues in a letter to the State and Federal Water Contractors Agency.

The Council accepted scoping comments on the Delta Plan and the first Draft Program Environmental Impact Report in late January 2012. The Final Draft Delta Plan is available here

As three of the Plaintiffs in the Monterey Plus Litigation, C-WIN, the California Sportfishing Protection Alliance and the Center for Biological Diversity sent a letter to the Delta Stewardship Council requesting that the Council consider reversing the Monterey Plus Amendments in the Delta Plan.

In addition, C-WIN joined 29 other environmental, environmental justice and fishing organizations in submitting joint scoping comments to the Delta Stewardship Council on their Delta Plan and EIR.

C-WIN, the California Sportfishing Protection Alliance and AquAlliance filed comments on the Recirculated Draft Program Environmental Impact Report for the Delta Plan on January 14, 2013 . 

The Delta Stewardship Council approved the Final Delta Plan and Final EIR on May 16, 2013.

In June 2013, a coalition of environmental groups consisting of C-WIN, CSPA, Restore the Delta, the Center for Biological Diversity, AquAlliance and Friends of the River filed a lawsuit against the Delta Plan, contending that it violates the California Environmental Quality Act and other statutes, and that it would irreparably harm the people, fisheries, wildlife, ecological assets and recreational values of the Delta.

Links to documents and comments pertinent to the Delta Stewardship Council and the Delta Plan follow.

Comments on the First Draft Program EIR for Delta Plan

C-WIN and allies filed several sets of comments on the first Draft Program EIR for the Delta Plan on February 2, 2012:

Comments from C-WIN, California Sportfishing Protection Alliance, Pacific Coast Federation of Fishermen's Associations and AquAlliance.

Comments from the California Environmental Water Caucus, to which C-WIN signed on.

C-WIN and 14 other groups also submitted supplemental comments.

Restore the Delta submitted its own comments

PCFFA, Friends of the River, the Winnemem Wintu Tribe, North Coast Rivers Alliance, Institute for Fisheries Resources and the California Sportfishing Protection Alliance.

San Joaquin County, South Delta Water Agency and Central Delta Water Agency submitted comments.

The Central Delta Water Agency submitted separate comments as well.

The Trinity Lake Revitalization Alliance submitted comments.

Rossman and Moore, LLP submitted their own comments.

Comments and Documents on the Recirculated Draft Program EIR

Because of the number of comments and critical analyses provided in comment letters from February 2012, the Delta Stewardship Council decided to recirculate the Delta Plan Draft Program EIR in late 2012. Comments were due January 14, 2013. C-WIN joined with CSPA and AquAlliance to submit extensive comments on the Delta Plan and its Draft Program EIR.

C-WIN/CSPA/AquAlliance comments on the Recirculated Draft Program EIR for the Delta Plan, plus:

  • Appendix 1 (Tim Stroshane/C-WIN Water Availability Analysis)
  • Appendix 2 (Walter Gleason 1960 Legislative Testimony)
  • Appendix 3 ("Bay-Delta Economics of Choice" by EcoNorthwest Economic Consultants)
  • Appendix 4 ("Dam Safety in California" by Donsoon Park)
  • Appendix 5 (Bureau of Reclamation 2007 B.F. Sisk Dam Safety Memo)
  • Appendix 6 (Engineer Robert Pyke to Gov. Brown "The Truth About Delta Levees" July 2012)

See also the comments of the Environmental Water Caucus on the Recirculated Draft Program EIR, Final Draft Delta Plan and Regulatory Package.

I Want to Help continue C-WIN’s engagement with these activities and other advocacy work.