Yesterday Senator Bill Monning, Team Vidak Senate Fellow Ben Granholm, and myself had the incredible opportunity to take an aerial tour of California’s Water System. In order to gain a deeper understanding of California’s complex water system and infrastructure, we spent the day viewing reservoirs and pumping plants that are integral to ensuring that the entire state has a reliable water supply.
The tour began in Sacramento, where we headed 3,500 feet above to get a look at the Sacramento river and the San Joaquin and Sacramento Delta before landing in Tracy to tour the Jones Pumping Plant, provided by the San Luis and Delta Mendota Water Authority (SLDMWA). Next we took to the sky again and followed the Delta Mendota Canal and California Aqueduct to the San Luis Reservoir before heading east to view the Mendota Pool and westside farmland. We next flew north to view the Friant Dam, Don Pedro, New Melones, Comanche, and Folsom reservoirs before getting an aerial look at the Oroville Dam and damaged spillway. We ended the tour following the Feather River southwest until it merged with the Sacramento River.
A big thank you to Johnny Amaral, Westlands Water District Deputy General Manager, Ed Manning, Partner at KP Public Affairs, the SLDMWA, and of course our pilot, Tim Brewer.