Mayor Bass’ Mono Lake diversion decision makes LA Times’ California Today front page

 The recent decision from Los Angeles on water diversions from the Mono Basin has made headlines in the Los Angeles Times.

The article highlights the leadership Mayor Karen Bass has demonstrated in helping the city plan to take less than the maximum allowed water export this year. The City’s action follows a request by the Mono Lake Committee and a diverse coalition of supporters, and reflects the growing chorus from City Council, community leaders, and the people of Los Angeles for environmental sustainability and citywide investment in water resilience.

In the thorough news story, LA Times staff writer Ian James writes:

“Mayor Bass has been clear that building a greener Los Angeles is one of her top priorities and protecting water resources certainly falls into that,” said Nancy Sutley, deputy mayor of energy and sustainability.

—A win for depleted Mono Lake, Los Angeles Times June 3, 2024

James spoke with Los Angeles community leaders Mark Gold of the Natural Resources Defense Council and Bruce Reznik of the Los Angeles Waterkeeper, who echoed the importance of the City’s action.

“It’s a historic decision in the history of Mono Lake,” said Mark Gold, director of water scarcity solutions for the Natural Resources Defense Council. “I think it’s the first major environmental accomplishment for water in the Bass administration.”

Mono Lake Committee Executive Director Geoff McQuilkin was also interviewed for the piece.

… the step shows Bass’ “commitment to a sustainable relationship” between the city and Mono Lake, and a renewed commitment to achieve the lake level target mandated by the state water board 30 years ago.

“And though it is just a fraction of the 8 feet separating Mono Lake today from its required healthy level, the inches quickly add up as the years go by,” McQuilkin said.

The goal, he said, is to get Mono Lake back to a level that allows the ecosystem to thrive.

For more background:

Top photo courtesy of Richard Erb.