Superior Court of California Reaffirms the Council’s Broad Authority as Delta Stewards

For the second time since the Delta Stewardship Council’s establishment in 2010, its regulatory authority has been upheld by California’s judicial branch, clearing the way for the Council to continue to apply its expertise and exercise its broad authority in determining how to accomplish the goals and objectives of the Delta Reform Act. On November 4, the Superior Court of California ruled in favor of the Council regarding lawsuits filed by parties challenging two amendments to the Delta Plan and the Programmatic Environmental Impact Report prepared pursuant to the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA).


“Since 2013, the Delta Plan has served as a comprehensive, forward-looking management plan for tackling the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta’s challenges related to water supply reliability and ecosystem resiliency in a way that protects and enhances the area’s special character and attributes. Amending the Delta Plan in response to the region’s ever-changing landscape and to reflect the best available science is directly tied to how successful the Council is in carrying out its legally mandated role as Delta stewards.”  

- Virginia Madueño, Chair

“The Council has now received recognition of our broad authority and discretion by the Appeals and Superior Courts. Combined, the Courts have affirmed and then reaffirmed that the Council has a central role in guiding and managing the long-term sustainability of the Delta that goes beyond ensuring regulatory compliance with Delta Plan regulations."

- Jessica R. Pearson, Executive Officer

California relies on the Delta. Did you know the Delta is part of the largest estuary on the west coast of North and South America? It supplies a portion of the water used by two-thirds of Californians, that is more than 27 million people.

The Council aligns Delta decision-making with science. In the face of climate change, this connection is more important than ever. Progress requires bringing the right people together to implement timely, science-based solutions.

A resilient statewide water supply and ecosystem necessitate the collective implementation of the Delta Plan. The Delta Plan creates a common vision for taking-on current and predicted challenges. It includes regulations, non-regulatory recommendations, and performance measures.

State Scientists visiting a restoration site at Bradmoor Island

The Council is a partner. We fund scientific research, invest in the next generation of scientists and policymakers, coordinate independent scientific peer reviews, synthesize relevant data, facilitate science communication, and identify tools for adaptive management.

Delta Stewardship Council

715 P Street, 15-300

Sacramento, CA 95814



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(916) 445-5511

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