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University of the Pacific

Is the era of dam-building over? Backers of several major projects say it shouldn't be.

Is the era of dam-building over? Backers of several major projects say it shouldn't be.

This tranquil ranching valley lies 15 miles west of the Sacramento River. A one-lane bridge spans a dried-up creek at the valley entrance. But when Jeff Sutton stands there, he imagines water, lots of it.

Never mind that talk of flooding the Antelope Valley north of Sacramento and turning it into a reservoir is older than Sutton. The time has finally come, he says. "It's the right project at the right place."

Drought, climate change and environmental curbs on water deliveries are fueling campaigns for more water storage in California. Sites Reservoir — as it would be called after the tiny settlement it would wipe off the map — is one of a handful of...

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