February 22nd, 2014

Feds Withhold Water To California Farmers For First Time In 54 Years


drought

This article was originally published at Zero Hedge

The US Bureau of Reclamation released its first outlook of the year and finds insufficient stock is available in California to release irrigation water for farmers. This is the first time in the 54 year history of the State Water Project. “If it’s not there, it’s just not there,” notes a Water Authority director adding that it’s going to be tough to find enough water, but farmers are hit hardest as “they’re all on pins and needles trying to figure out how they’re going to get through this.” Fields will go unplanted (supply lower mean food prices higher), or farmers will pay top dollar for water that’s on the market (and those costs can only be passed on via higher food prices).

Via AP,

Federal officials announced Friday that many California farmers caught in the state’s drought can expect to receive no irrigation water this year from a vast system of rivers, canals and reservoirs interlacing the state.

The U.S. Bureau of Reclamation released its first outlook of the year, saying that the agency will continue to monitor rain and snow fall, but the grim levels so far prove that the state is in the throes of one of its driest periods in recorded history.

Unless the year turns wet, many farmers can expect to receive no water from the federally run Central Valley Project.

… the state’s snowpack is at 29 percent of average for this time of year.

California officials who manage the State Water Project, the state’s other major water system, have already said they won’t be releasing any water for farmers, marking a first in its 54-year history.

“They’re all on pins and needles trying to figure out how they’re going to get through this,” Holman said, adding that Westland’s 700 farmers will choose to leave fields unplanted, draw water from wells or pay top dollar for water that’s on the market.

Farmers are hit hardest, but they’re not alone. Contractors that provide cities with water can expect to receive half of their usual amount, the Bureau said, and wildlife refuges that need water flows in rivers to protect endangered fish will receive 40 percent of their contracted supply.

Contractors that provide farmers with water and hold historic agreements giving them senior rights will receive 40 percent of their normal supplies. Some contracts date back over a century and guarantee that farmers will receive at least 75 percent of their water.

One of those is the San Joaquin River Exchange Contractors Water Authority in Los Banos that provides irrigation for 240,000 acres of farmland.

The Water Authority’s executive director Steve Chedester said farmers he serves understand that the reality of California’s drought means it’s going to be tough to find enough water for them. “They’re taking a very practical approach,” he said. “If it’s not there, it’s just not there.”




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4 Responses to “Feds Withhold Water To California Farmers For First Time In 54 Years”

  1. 1
    Chris Says:

    Less water = less food. Less food X high demand to eat = higher prices. Our paychecks are being stretched way to much nowadays.

  2. 2
    Cal Says:

    First, Gov Brown is negotiating to bring fracking to California – an EXTREMELY high water usage project, and poisons water supplies.

    2nd, all golf course and water parks, etc -recreation areas close down FIRST before one drop is turned off to farmers, otherwise it is a direct attack on the food supply – and not just California’s food supply. California supplies the whole USA and a big part of the worlds food.

    Plus the feds actually have NO LAWFUL base to tell California what to do with their water. Anymore then they have a lawful right to keep holding California land that was supposed to be turned over to the state when it wrote its Constitution and got it’s government in place – which is theft on the feds part.

    This is a direct attack on the food of the people here in the USA. Folsom dams “accidental” water release was accidentally on purpose.

    Knowledge is power, as is fighting this action. WE cannot allow them to starve Americans in the name of the NWO. Screw them!

  3. 3
    Dave Says:

    It looks like the environmentalist and agenda 21 are in full force in California.

  4. 4
    Ed Warden Says:

    With no water to grow food that will lead to a WAR IN THIS COUNTRY.

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