Gov. Jerry Brown told the San Jose Mercury News that restoring Delta levees, as an alternative to building twin tunnels, is “not feasible.”
“That’s what I’m being told,” Brown said (watch his comments on this video starting at the 42:30 mark). “That will certainly be part of the environmental process as it tees up the question, ‘Build or no build?’ The process is still open and alive but certainly where we’re headed is a tunnel.”
Brown said he was told by Jerry Meral, California’s deputy resources secretary, that levee restoration is not a feasible solution.
Then again, the governor said, if there’s another option he’d like to know about it. He described the need to build the tunnels as one of the “consequences” of a population climbing past 38 million people, and said he would consider other cost-effective solutions.
Delta advocates would probably steer him toward a plan recently completed by the Delta Protection Commission, which concludes the levees can be improved for a fraction of the price of the twin tunnels.