Finding that the work is integral to the restoration of the Dutch Slough Tidal Marsh, the Delta Stewardship Council has added to its Interim Plan a project to replace a 21,000-foot stretch of the unlined Contra Costa Canal with pipeline.
The overall Dutch Slough restoration effort, specially called for in water code statutes, will restore tidal marsh and other native habitats to 1,166 acres of land owned by the Department of Water Resources in eastern Contra Costa County.
The goals of this restoration effort are both targeted and broad. Improved habitat will benefit many species that call the Delta home, including threatened spring run Chinook salmon, endangered winter run Chinook salmon and Sacramento splittail. At the same time, the project will restore natural hydrology and increase nutrients in the larger Delta ecosystem.
The Contra Costa Water District has already completed the $11-million first phase of the effort, with the second phase expected to cost $45 million.
The Delta Stewardship Council found that the restoration project meets seven of eight policy goals outlined in the state Water Code, including improving source water quality, flood protection and public safety.