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In re Quantitative Settlement Agreement Coordinated Civil Cases

ELR Citation: 43 ELR 20121
Nos. JCCP 4353, (Super. Ct. Cal., 06/04/2013)

A California court validated a settlement agreement and 11 related agreements concerning the conservation, transfer, and exchange of Colorado River water diverted for beneficial consumptive use among Southern California water agencies. The agreements were negotiated and executed to resolve longstanding disputes under federal and state law, court decisions, and contracts governing the diversion and use of Colorado River water by states through which the river runs. Among other provisions, the agreement allows farms in Imperial County to sell water to San Diego for use as drinking water. Environmentalists were concerned about impacts this would have on the Salton Sea, an inland waterbody that has been sustained primarily by irrigation drainage. But the agreements comply with all necessary procedural and substantive requirements, including environmental review requirements under the California Environmental Quality Act.