May 6, 2019
The Honorable Gavin Newsom
State Capitol,.Suite 1173
Sacramento, CA 95814
I fully support your May 2, 2019 announcement revoking approvals of the twin Delta tunnels and proceeding instead with a single tunnel project. I appreciate your leadership on this issue, and I believe it is critical that California build a single tunnel to improve Delta conveyance.
As you know, California has not significantly improved its statewide water infrastructure since the 1960's, when we were home to just 16 million people. We need to modernize our water infrastructure to serve our current population of 40 million people as well as to adjust to climate change, which could cause our Sierra snowpack to decline by as much as 79% by the end of the century.
Along with increased storage, water recycling, and desalination, a single Delta tunnel is a critical piece of a modernized water infrastructure. A single tunnel has many advantages:
• It would maintain a reliable water supply in the face of a levee collapse induced by sea level rise or a future earthquake that would otherwise cut off deliveries from Northern California to the San Joaquin Valley and Southern California.
• A single tunnel can be designed to protect salmon and the water quality of communities in the Delta.
• A tunnel can allow us to capture significant flows from major storms when they occur and will also increase the benefits of north-of-Delta storage projects like Sites Reservoir.
• A tunnel will facilitate water transfers to improve drought resilience and reduce salinity of water conveyed through the Delta.
• Finally, a tunnel would make the state's entire water system more flexible and more resilient to handle the lengthy and increasingly severe droughts that are predicted to regularly occur with climate change.
I look forward to working with you on a single tunnel project, in combination with additional water storage, recycling, and desalination projects as well as other efforts to modernize California's water infrastructure.
United States Senator