STOCKTON – How does one grade a river?
Farmers might ask if it provides a reliable source of water for their crops. Fishermen might ask if it provides habitat for salmon or steelhead. Neighbors might ask if there is public access, maybe a nice walking trail.
Four rivers transect portions of San Joaquin County, and local leaders and advocates gathered Monday in a unique effort to evaluate those streams – subjective though their grading might be.
The results of anonymous evaluations will be summarized in an upcoming white paper.
But it’s already clear there is a wide range of opinion about the well-being of the San Joaquin, Mokelumne, Calaveras and Stanislaus rivers.
Take the Calaveras, a nursery for threatened steelhead and a primary source of water for Stockton.