Drought, water politics wear on growers - The Packer

Drought, water politics wear on growers

03/21/2014 09:07:00 AM
Tom Karst

2. A water balance analysis is done for the San Joaquin Valley so that residents and decision makers know the extent and seriousness of the situation. Following that analysis, a determination be made as to how many acres of productive farm land must be permanently fallowed to get the area in to water balance.

3. A new dam built at Temperance Flat with public funds. Twice in the last 20 years, flood events have resulted in the loss of millions of acre-feet of water because Friant Dam is too small. Water banking by itself cannot address this problem because it takes time for the water to percolate in water banks. The additional storage will provide the time to store the water and then be released over time. In addition, this water can be available for in-lieu recharge which is the most effective means of underground replenishment. There is nothing sinful about a society investing in its own infrastructure. A new dam is the investment in the future food security of the United State. It would provide the additional water needed to help restore some water balance to the area, as well as significant flood control benefits. However, without revising the San Joaquin River Settlement, a new dam would be virtually useless. The only solution would then be to permanently fallow hundreds of thousands of more acres of productive farm land.

CONCLUSION

We are at a crossroads for the East Side of the San Joaquin Valley. For some 50 years, we have thrived due to the foresight, planning, and wisdom of our forefathers. Leaders of both political parties worked together to provide an opportunity for the World War II generation by building Friant Dam and enacting Reclamation Law. This generation responded magnificently by creating a robust society of small and medium sized communities embedded in 1,000,000 acres of productive farm land. This land was nourished this country and the world. It has been a government program that worked.

Now, all that is at risk not because of any continuing natural calamity, but because of a continuing series of overreaching environmental laws passed by Federal and State legislators and enforced by bureaucrats and judges. The only solution is to revise these onerous laws. The time to act is now.

 


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Gregory Smith    
Lakeland, FL  |  March, 24, 2014 at 10:55 AM

The regulations imposed on agricultural water by federal and state beurocrats will mount. The ColdPICK Mobile Post Harvest 'forced air' Cooling Systems may be a "drop in the bucket". The ColdPICK is a cost effective alternative to hydro cooling. www.coldpick.com

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