The watershed of the Sacramento - San Joaquin Delta provides drinking water to more than 23 million Californians as well as millions of acre-feet per year for agricultural irrigation in the Central Valley. The Delta itself is a complex estuarine ecosystem, with populations of many native species now in serious decline. Because the estuary is connected to the Pacific Ocean through San Francisco Bay, during dry periods seawater can intrude upstream into the Delta affecting estuarine species as well as drinking water and irrigation water supplies.
The Contra Costa Water District’s report “Historical Fresh Water and Salinity Conditions in the Western Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta and Suisun Bay” provides a review of more than 100 years of studies, monitoring data, scientific reports, and modeling analyses that establish the historical salinity conditions in the Western Delta and Suisun Bay.
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