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Water & Wine

Low stream flow in summer and fall adversely affects salmon and steelhead rearing habitat and leads to unreliable water supplies for growers. In response to dwindling wild salmon populations in California’s streams and rivers, TU is partnering with grape growers in Northern California Wine Country and working with them to adopt water management practices that restore and reconnect critical salmon and steelhead habitat on their properties.  It has three elements:

  • Water Supply Solutions.  Developing physical projects and better water management solutions with landowners -- such as off-stream winter storage ponds, coordinating the timing of diversions, and improvements in irrigation efficiency -- to improve water supply reliability and reduce water withdrawals from streams during the summer and fall, when salmon and steelhead need water the most. 
     
  • Stream Restoration. Removing fish passage barriers, planting streamside vegetation, and restoring stream channels.
     
  • Public Awareness. Promoting industry leaders to consumers who demand a wine consistent with their values, publicizing sound stewardship practiced by these landowners to create incentives for more grape growers to engage in land and water stewardship, and generating public support for wild salmon and steelhead conservation.  See www.whywild.org.
Water and Wine was launched in March 2008, and current Water and Wine participants account for more than 30 generations and 725 years of experience of agricultural stewardship. Together, we’re tackling the dysfunction in California’s water rights system and turning California’s wet winters and dry summers into opportunities rather than obstacles for wild salmon and growers alike.  For more information and to see if your favorite vineyard is a participant, check out www.tu.org/waterandwine or download Water and Wine: Partners in Wine Country Stewardship (pdf, 1.46 MB).  

For more information - contact: California Water Project

Brian J. Johnson

Director, California Water Project; TU Staff Attorney

1808 B 5th Street

Berkeley, CA 94710

Ph: 510-528-7880

Fx: 510-528-7880

Email: bjohnson@tu.org

Mary Ann King

Stewardship Coordinator

1808 B 5th Street

Berkeley, CA 94710

Ph: 510-528-7880

Fx: 510-528-7880

Email: mking@tu.org

 

Download Water and Wine PDF

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