Randall Lewis Seminar to Address State Water Crisis

Celeste Cantu of Santa Ana Watershed Project Authority will discuss drought impacts and planning for the future in Sept. 25 lecture at UC Riverside

Celeste Cantu

Celeste Cantu

RIVERSIDE, Calif. – California is enduring the worst drought in its history, a crisis that is having a devastating impact on the state’s water resources and on its economy.

Celeste Cantu, general manager of Santa Ana Watershed Project Authority (SAWPA) and a recognized water authority in the Inland region, will discuss “Water and Our Future: What’s It to You?” on Thursday, Sept. 25, in a lecture presented by UC Riverside’s Center for Sustainable Suburban Development as part of the center’s Randall Lewis Seminar Series.

The seminar will be held from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at the UCR Bourns College of Engineering Center for Environmental Research and Technology, 1084 Columbia Ave. It is free and open to the public. A reception will immediately follow the seminar. Registration is requested and may be made online.

In a rare demonstration of bipartisanship support, the California Legislature approved, and Gov. Jerry Brown quickly signed, a $7.5 billion water bond for the November ballot. If passed by voters, the measure will address the significant challenges facing the state’s water infrastructure and its fragile Sacramento Delta ecosystems.

However, even if the measure is approved it will not immediately solve the looming problem of water shortages that confront California’s cities and counties.The state’s water tables and supplies continue to be strained as the drought persists. And in Southern California, the problem is compounded by the drought on the Colorado River.

Cantu will discuss the proposed water bond and the Delta ecosystems, the impact the drought is having on the water supply from the Colorado River, and the issue of climate change and its impacts on watershed management. She is a former executive director of the California State Water Resources Control Board and U.S. Department of Agriculture Rural Development state director for California during the Clinton administration,

She also will address the importance of better managing watershed resources locally and across political boundaries; the importance of managing watersheds affected by wildfires and reducing wildfire threats; the use of urban planning to protect watershed resources; and processes for societal consultation and participation, such as landscaping with California-friendly plants.

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Established in 2003, the UCR Center for Sustainable Suburban Development (CSSD) explores the social, economic, political and environmental impacts that population growth and movement has on cities and local communities. The center facilitates interdisciplinary collaborations in the community through its staff and affiliated faculty via research, joint conferences, workshops and public forums held at UCR and in the community.

The Randall Lewis Seminar Series is an ongoing program of CSSD generously funded by Randall Lewis, executive vice president of Upland-based Lewis Operating Cos. The seminars focus on a wide range of regional sustainability topics such as air and water resources, infrastructure and transportation planning, affordable housing and the fiscal health of cities.

Media Contact


Tel: (951) 827-7847
E-mail: bettye.miller@ucr.edu
Twitter: bettyemiller

Additional Contacts

Ron Redfern
Tel: (951) 827-7830
E-mail: ronald.redfern@ucr.edu

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