Proposed Sites Reservoir Crosses Critical Milestone
Sites Reservoir, the proposed 1.5 million acre-foot off-stream reservoir that would be the 8th largest in California if built, took a major step forward last week (Nov. 17) as the project’s lead agency certified the Final Environmental Impact Report. The proposed reservoir is located about 70 miles north of Sacramento in Colusa County and would store more than four times the volume of Hetch Hetchy. Water from Sites would benefit Bay Area communities served by Zone 7 Water Agency and Santa Clara Valley Water and has been a top water infrastructure priority of the Bay Area Council for over a decade.
The reservoir would also store water specifically for the environment to support native wildlife and their habitat during drought periods. The Council was a major supporter of Proposition 1 (2014) to support the public benefits of water storage projects and advocated on behalf of Sites Reservoir’s application for Prop 1 funding, and supported Governor Newsom’s proposal—since signed into law—to expedite the project’s judicial review under the California Environmental Quality Act. Sites has a pending water rights application with the state and anticipates construction starting in 2025. To learn more about Sites Reservoir, watch this video or visit the Sites project website. To engage with the Council’s Water & Climate Resilience Committee please contact Senior Vice President Adrian Covert.