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Science Spotlight

2016 Long-term Operations Biological Opinions Information & Update

The purpose of the 2016 information and update is to provide stakeholders and members of the public a forum in which to provide input regarding the NOAA’s National Marine Fisheries Service’s and the US Fish and Wildlife Service’s Biological Opinion on the long-term operations of the Central Valley Project and State Water Project. Specifically, there will be an opportunity for input regarding the various regulatory actions prescribed by their respective Reasonable and Prudent Alternatives. The review will enable NMFS and USFWS to use lessons learned, incorporate new science, and make appropriate, scientifically justified adjustments to the implementation of the RPAs.

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The Delta on Fast Forward: Thinking Beyond the Next Crisis

The State of Bay-Delta Science, 2016 (SBDS, 2016) is a compendium of scientific papers that synthesize the current scientific understanding of the Bay and Delta, with an emphasis on progress made since the first edition of SBDS was published in 2008. Also, select members of the editorial board prepared a summary for policymakers: The Delta on Fast Forward: Thinking Beyond the Next Crisis. This summary includes seven new perspectives on SBDS, 2016, a suite of tools that are advancing Delta science, and eight forward-thinking actions.

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California WaterFix Aquatic Science Peer Review

Phase 2A of the independent scientific peer review for the Biological Opinion and 2081(b) Incidental Take Permit analyses of the California WaterFix aquatic science will take place December 8-9, 2016.

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The New Issue of SFEWS Continues to Preview State of Bay-Delta Science 2016

Three new chapters from the upcoming State of Bay-Delta Science 2016 are now available including the latest scientific information on food webs in the Delta and Suisun Marsh, how climate change may affect the Delta, and agricultural and urban water supply reliability. Other articles include papers on the evolution of primary production in the Delta, fine-scale distributions of zooplankton in the northern San Francisco Estuary, and a note on Delta outflow.

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Independent Peer Review Report: Estimating Net Delta Outflow (NDO): Approaches to Estimating NDO in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta Now Online

The State Resources Control Board (SWRCB) is undertaking a four-phased process to develop and implement updates to the Bay-Delta Plan and flow objectives for priority tributaries to the Delta to protect beneficial uses in the Bay-Delta watershed. The SWRCB asked the Delta Science Program to obtain a peer review of the report provided by the Dept. of Water Resources in response to a request for a technical analysis of appropriate methodologies for determining net Delta outflow as a regulatory parameter in the Bay-Delta Plan. 

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Data Summit White Paper Released: Enhancing the Vision for Managing California’s Environmental Information

The white paper, Enhancing the Vision for Managing California’s Environmental Information, is now available. This paper is a synthesis of ideas explored during the Delta Stewardship Council’s Delta Science Program June 2014 Data Summit. It is based on initiatives, current programs and the experiences of individuals from State and federal agencies, academia, private and non-governmental entities.

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Delta ISB Review of Flows and Fishes in the Delta Posted

The Delta Independent Science Board (Delta ISB) has posted its review on how freshwater flows affect Delta fish populations. The report, “Flows and Fishes in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta” offers several recommendations on scientific strategies to benefit adaptive management.

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Report Posted on Management, Analysis, and Synthesis Team’s (MAST) Updated Conceptual Model of Delta Smelt Biology

An updated conceptual model of Delta smelt biology by the Interagency Ecological Program’s Management, Analysis, and Synthesis Team has been posted. This report updates previous conceptual models for Delta smelt to reflect new data and information since the release of the last synthesis report about the Pelagic Organism Decline by the Interagency Ecological Program for the San Francisco Estuary.

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Science News

San Francisco Estuary & Watershed Science
Volume 14, Issue 3 of the free SFEWS online journal examines the latest scientific information on food webs in the Delta and Suisun Marsh, how climate change may affect the Delta, and agricultural and urban water supply reliability. These articles - and others to be published later this year - will form chapters for the Council's upcoming State of Bay-Delta Science 2016.

Enhancing the Vision for Managing Californias Environmental Information

State of Bay-Delta Science 2008

Science News

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Delta Science Fellows Program

Delta Science Fellowships Awarded - The Delta Science Program in conjunction with California Sea Grant awarded Fellowships for 2015 to twelve outstanding candidates – the largest class of fellows ever awarded - with funding support from the NOAA Fisheries Southwest Fisheries Science Center and the State and Federal Contractors Water Agency.

The deadline for applications for the 2017 Science Fellowship Program was September 23, 2016. Click here for more information.

Grants Program

The Delta Science Program has funded 48 research grants totaling more than $27 million. The Science Program considers funding scientific research to be a critical component in establishing unbiased and authoritative knowledge directly relevant to Bay-Delta actions. This knowledge will fundamentally advance the understanding of the complex environments and ecosystems within the Bay-Delta system to aid policy-makers, managers and other decision-makers.

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Coequal goals

The Delta Stewardship Council was created in legislation to achieve the state mandated coequal goals for the Delta. "'Coequal goals' means the two goals of providing a more reliable water supply for California and protecting, restoring, and enhancing the Delta ecosystem. The coequal goals shall be achieved in a manner that protects and enhances the unique cultural, recreational, natural resource, and agricultural values of the Delta as an evolving place." (CA Water Code §85054)