“The plans are so vague as to be worthless.”

The  Chico Enterprise-Record isn’t much impressed with the Water Plan Update 2018. My impression is that the Water Plan played it so safe that it became a meaningless list of every good thing, and my fear is that the Resilience Portfolio is headed down the same path. Fortunately, we will know as soon as the Resilience Portfolio is released, by locating it on the spectrum from safe to controversial.


  • Information clearinghouse
  • Internal agency re-organization
  • State agency “alignment”
  • Decision support/decision “framework”
  • Creating an index/setting performance measures
  • Doing science
  • Giving out State money

All of those are essentially the State government masturbating. Not wrong, but none of them affect anything in the outside world. That’s why they’re safe.


  • Finding “win-win” solutions
  • Doing something useful while ignoring EJ needs
  • Supporting local control
    • IRWM/GSA
  • Voluntary Settlement Agreements
  • Requiring plans (UWMP, AWMP, GSPs)
  • Enforcing existing laws
  • Recommending legislation (esp legislation that would cost anything)


  • Enforcing plans (UWMP, AWMP, GSPS) and holding districts accountable for not meeting plan goals
  • Doing something useful and acknowledging/meeting EJ needs
  • Correcting our godawful water rights situation
  • Using State authority over local government
  • Using State authority over local government without being obsequious about local control
  • any concept that challenges capitalism (instream flows, rights for rivers)
  • managed retreat before the calamity
  • anything that isn’t based on “economic growth”

If the Resilience Portfolio only makes it halfway through the mediums, it’ll deserve the same reception that the Chico ER gave Water Plan Update 2018.

(I am happy to add more items to the spectrum, if you leave them in the comments.)



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2 responses to ““The plans are so vague as to be worthless.”

  1. Noel Park

    Anything outside of “safe” will be a pleasant surprise. Only catastrophe will force change.

  2. The Water Plan has always been an anthology of every stakeholder group’s desires. In part, this is justified, because DWR is supposed to listen to stakeholders. But DWR rarely makes the effort to get stakeholders to negotiate choices, and that is a failing.