California Water and Environmental Modeling Forum

Promoting Excellence and Consensus in Water and Environmental Modeling


California Water and Environmental Modeling Forum

Technical Briefing Series

The goal of the CWEMF’s Technical Briefing Series is to be educational.  By presenting background and factual information on timely issues in a non-partisan atmosphere, we hope to facilitate the wider goal of building understanding, and eventually consensus, among stakeholders for the technical basis of models used to analyze California’s water-related problems.

Background and Technical Basis for the Biological Opinions

Wed., September 7, 2011
8:30 - 12:15
Natural Resources Building Auditorium
1416 9th St., Sacramento

Since their release, both the salmonid (NMFS, 2009) and delta smelt (USFWS, 2008) biological opinions (BOs) have generated considerable controversy.  The goal of this briefing is to present pertinent background information to facilitate understanding of the biological opinions.  Topics include: overview of the BO legal framework, a discussion of each BO, and modeling work illustrating the implications of the BOs for Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta operations.


(Presentation and bio links “pop-up” in Adobe pdf)

9:00     Welcome
                    Marianne Guerin, CWEMF Convener

9:10     Biological Opinion Litigation - Historical Background and the Law
                   Laurence Kerckhoff, CA Dept. of Water Resources

9:50     Salmonid Biological Opinion
                   Dave Vogel, Natural Resource Scientists, Inc.

10:30   Delta Smelt Biological Opinion
                    Chris Fitzer, AECOM

11:10   Operational Effects of the Biological Opinions Using Planning Models
                    Walter Bourez, MBK Engineers

11:50   Modeling Turbidity for the Delta Smelt Biological Opinion
                    Marianne Guerin, Resource Management Associates

12:10   Wrap-Up