Engineering Solutions to Bay Area Drought Conditions

by Donald G. Larkin, (F.ASCE), Asst. General Mgr. and Chf. Engr.; East Bay Municipal Utility Dist., Oakland, Calif.,

Serial Information: Journal of the Water Resources Planning and Management Division, 1978, Vol. 104, Issue 1, Pg. 235-251

Document Type: Journal Paper


California underwent a 2 yr drought from 1976 to 1978 which had a serious effect on all water supplies of the State. In the San Francisco Bay Area, several local water agencies, in conjunction with Federal and State agencies, developed complex multi-party agreements of mutual aid to alleviate the drought emergency. In record time of only a few months from conceptual plan to startup, drought-relief water was provided to the local agencies in need. Three formal agreements among the several parties were developed with minimum red tape because the engineering staffs of the agencies involved realized the urgency of the situation. This attitude prevailed in the planning and design, as well as in the construction by contract. The facilities constructed provided both supplemental water and high quality dilution water, and the effects of the drought were minimized.

Subject Headings: Water quality | Water supply systems | Bays | Droughts | Agreements and treaties | Water level | Federal government | Emergency management | California | United States | San Francisco Bay Area

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