Sierra Club v. West Side Irrigation Dist.
Citation: 35 ELR 20078
No. No. C044989, (Cal. App. 3d Dist., 04/20/2005)
A California appellate court upheld two irrigation districts' decisions to assign water rights to a city. The districts did not improperly segment environmental review of the two assignment approvals. The assignments involved separate water rights, they transfer different amounts of water, and they occur under separately negotiated agreements that contain different terms from each other. Further, the districts evaluated cumulative impacts, including cumulative growth-inducing impacts, in the manner required by the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA), and there is no evidence in the record that the assignments will induce growth not already planned and evaluated on a macro level in the general plan and the general plan environmental impact report. Last, the districts adequately determined what effect cutbacks in delivery of Central Valley Project water would have on the environment. The lower court, therefore, properly denied an environmental group's petition for review under the CEQA.