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Yuba County Water Agency Could Ship Billions Of Gallons Of Water To Bay Area Amid Drought

YUBA COUNTY (CBS13) — California needs water and one local water agency wants to take a big step toward helping counties in danger of going dry.

The Yuba Water Agency could sell and ship billions of gallons of water to Marin County through a pipeline across a bridge.

This pipeline would be built across the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge. There's no official price tag for this project just yet, but the Marin Independent Journal estimates it could be more than $10 million.

Under the transfer agreement, the Yuba Water Agency would sell at least 10,000 acre-feet of water to the Contra Costa Water District and East Bay Municipal Utility District from its new Bullards Bar Reservoir.

The move would help make up for shortages in those districts as the drought continues.

So how could this impact you and your supply?

"This agreement does not change the way we operate or how much water we release at all," said Willie Whittlesey, the general manager of the Yuba County Water Agency. "This is just a change in where a relatively small portion of water we're already releasing goes."

The general manager says the money generated would help pay for a variety of Yuba County projects, including reducing flood and fire risks and boosting water education.

As for what comes next: Boards for the agency and two districts have to vote and finalize the terms of the agreement, which could push them into early next year.

The state also has to approve the transfer.

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