Photo by Nandaro, Wikimedia Commons
Write to the State Water Board to suspend water diversions by the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (LADWP) until Mono Lake rises back to a healthy, sustainable level.
Attend an online State Water Board information-gathering workshop tomorrow, Wednesday, February 15, from 1 to 4 p.m. Pacific Time.
Despite January's wet weather, Mono Lake's surface elevation is so low that an intervention is needed.
The Mono Lake Committee has asked the State Water Board to suspend stream diversions until the lake rises enough to protect wildlife and the ecosystem, and to quickly schedule a hearing to implement long-term stream diversion changes that will ensure Mono Lake can rise to the healthy, sustainable level mandated by the Board in 1994. Indeed, after 29 years, Mono Lake has only risen 20% of the way to the mandated level. Meanwhile, LADWP has diverted the maximum allowed each year, taking water away from the lake.
Today, the lake level is perilously low—reflecting the legacy of excessive water diversions accentuated by drought. The low level has further exposed a land bridge that allows predators to threaten one of the world’s largest nesting California Gull populations. In addition, salinity has increased in violation of water quality standards, which puts the entire ecosystem at risk.
Friends of the Inyo stands in solidarity with the Mono Lake Committee in its efforts to safeguard the lake and all it sustains, and is asking our supporters for their engagement as well.
FOI Executive Director Wendy Schneider said, "As usual, LADWP is refusing to comply with court-ordered actions to protect our area's ecosystems and species. It is important that we come together as a community to push back against their false claims that our lands are not being damaged by their relentless water extraction."
What can I do?
Now is an important time to speak up for our beloved Mono Lake! Take action and make your voice heard!
- Write a letter to the State Water Board here. You will find a template, talking points and all you need on that page of the Mono Lake Committee's website. The open comment period ends Friday, March 17, at 4 p.m. Pacific Standard Time.
- Attend an Online Workshop. Tomorrow, Wednesday, February 15, from 1 to 4 p.m. Pacific Standard Time, the State Water Board is holding an online, public information-gathering workshop to evaluate the Committee's request for emergency action and to "discuss the status of lake levels and solicit input on next steps the Board should consider." You will see from the agenda that the Mono Lake Committee, LADWP, California Department of Fish & Wildlife, and the Mono Lake Kutzadika’a Tribe will present on the current conditions at Mono Lake during the workshop. State Water Board staff will present overview information and seek verbal comments from participants. Please attend if your schedule allows. There is strength in numbers! Register for the workshop here.