water_sbtrout - ENVST 110 Water: Santa Barbara and...

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ENVST 110 Water: Santa Barbara and Steelhead Trout Water in Santa Barbara: Water evaporates from the ocean, plants, soil. Moves over land and hits the foothills. As clouds move up slope the temperature declines and the air cannot hold as much moisture. This results in rain. Rain runs-off into creeks and rivers. We created storage in Lake Cachuma and the Gibraltar Reservoir using dams. We now also have water from the state water project, but the city of Santa Barbara does not use its allotment. It instead sells this allotment to Santa Ynez, a city that has over drafted its water systems and is now highly dependent on this imported water. Cachuma Gibralatar We pipe the water stored in these aquifers to the Cater water treatment facility located above Foothill Dr. where it is treated (requiring chlorine and a lot of energy). It then goes to your home, business etc. Much of this ends up in your toilet (yes, we crap in purified drinking water) and used on your landscape (plants don’t need purified drinking water any more than our crap does). The black water (toilet), that needs substantial “treatment”, is combined with grey water (shower, sinks etc.), that requires much less “treatment”, and sent into the sewage system that brings it to the lowest area in the city (powered by gravity) at the El Estero wastewater treatment plant. Wastewater is treated (again a lot of chemicals and energy used) and some of the cleaned water is sent back to parks (reclaimed or recycled), golf
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ENVST 110 Water: Santa Barbara and Steelhead Trout courses, and SBCC for irrigation (about 1.5 million gallons/day total). The rest, about 6.5 million gallons/day) is piped out into the ocean about 1.5 miles off the wharf. What doesn’t end up in our water supply moves down streams and creeks that drain the watersheds. Many of these have been altered by human development. Channelization through cement channels and culverts speeds water off the land, intended to decrease flooding and erosion. This, however, decreases water’s ability to be filtered or to enter groundwater. It moves too quickly and is moving through culverts and cement channels so it never comes into contact with soil or plants that would pull out pollutants. These culverts and channels also hinder movement up stream by fish. They serve as physical barriers, but also create inhospitable zones that are difficult for fish to move through. Water is moving fast, there is no place for fish to rest and the often shallow and warm water can hold less dissolved oxygen. Without a creek habitat and riparian system there is no food. (Cement channel at Mission st.) The channelization has not had the intended effect in many places where the problem of flooding is just transferred down stream. Because the water moves down a concrete channel it can’t meander and slow down, can’t sink into the soil, and simply gains volume and momentum until it overflows its banks or pours into an area where the channel or culvert opens up. Just stand in our lower parking lot after a hard rain to see.
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This note was uploaded on 10/26/2010 for the course ENVS 110 taught by Professor Green during the Fall '08 term at Santa Barbara City.

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water_sbtrout - ENVST 110 Water: Santa Barbara and...

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