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Judge overturns California water pipeline approval

June 22, 2019

LOS ANGELES (AP) — A federal judge has overturned Trump administration approval for a water pipeline through Southern California public lands.

The judge on Thursday ruled that the Bureau of Land Management wrongly eased the way for a proposed 43-mile Mojave Desert pipeline.

Cadiz Inc. wants to transport billions of gallons of water from its desert wells to customers. Critics argue the project will dry up the desert and destroy cultural and natural resources.

In 2017 the BLM overturned Obama-era decisions and decided the project didn’t need complicated federal permission but could use an existing railroad right of way.

The judge rejected that logic and also said the BLM hadn’t justified the about-face.

Cadiz CEO Scott Slater tells the San Diego Union-Tribune the ruling is a procedural matter the BLM can easily fix.

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