As numerous news outlets reported, see L.A. Times and S.F. Chronicle, the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit issued a decision reversing a lower court and affirming a biological opinion and reasonable and prudent alternative issued by the National Marine Fisheries Service with respect to the continuing operation of the Central Valley Project by the Bureau of Reclamation and the State Water Project by the California Department of Water Resources.  The Projects provide water to more than 20 million Californians.

The panel’s decision relies heavily on a prior Ninth Circuit decision affirming a biological opinion and reasonable and prudent alternative issued by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service with respect to the continuing operation of the Projects.