Tribes Accuse Calif. Water Board Of Discrimination And Urge EPA Oversight

"A coalition of California tribes and environmental justice groups filed a civil rights complaint Friday against the State Water Resources Control Board, charging it with discriminatory water management practices that it says have led to the ecological decline of the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta.

Members of the Shingle Springs Band of Miwok Indians, the Winnemem Wintu Tribe, Little Manila Rising, Restore the Delta and Save California Salmon are calling for U.S. Environmental Protection Agency oversight of the state water board, including an investigation into its alleged failure to review and update water quality standards in compliance with the Clean Water Act.

The Title VI civil rights complaint comes about seven months after the same coalition petitioned the board to review and update its water quality plan for the delta and San Francisco Bay — a petition the groups said went largely ignored. They charged the board with giving preferential treatment to large agricultural interests and said the delta’s deterioration can be linked to the state’s historical legacy of racism and oppression of Native people."

Hayley Smith reports for the Los Angeles Times December 17, 2022.

Source: LA Times, 12/19/2022