Ag Today Tuesday, February 16, 2016
Tuesday, February 16, 2016
Los Angeles Times
Feinstein water bill could help with California's drought—if House GOP gives it a chance
As an attempt to balance many competing interests, the water bill that California Democrat Dianne Feinstein introduced in the Senate last week appears well-thought-through and carefully crafted — and as such it is being greeted by many with the kind of lukewarm response that such attempts often receive. Few seem ready to embrace it without reservation, precisely because it offers a compromise. If it were the product of negotiations among environmental stewards, agribusiness and urban water agencies, it would leave...
Ag Today Friday, February 12, 2016
Friday, February 12, 2016
Kings County opponents of high-speed rail get their court date
By Tim Sheehan
SACRAMENTO - Attorneys for and against California’s high-speed rail project made their final arguments Thursday to a Sacramento County Superior Court judge who will decide whether the proposed bullet-train system complies with the requirements set out in 2008 by Proposition 1A.
It’s taken more than four years for the lawsuit, filed in late 2011 by Kings County farmer John Tos, Hanford homeowner Aaron Fukuda and the Kings County Board of Supervisors against the California High-Speed Rail Authority, to reach Thursday’s trial. And both sides are...
Ag Today Thursday, February 11, 2016
Thursday, February 11, 2016
San Francisco Chronicle
Feinstein water plan could permit more pumping for farmers
By Carolyn Lochhead
WASHINGTON — Amid record-high farm revenue and record-low salmon counts in California’s historic drought, Sen. Dianne Feinstein introduced legislation Wednesday that would make it easier to move more water from rivers to farms in the San Joaquin Valley.
The long-awaited 184-page bill follows the California Democrat’s failed negotiations last year with the powerful House Republicans who represent valley farming interests, and several years of failure by the state’s congressional delegation to shape a federal response to the four-year drought.
In a nine-page press release, Feinstein said...
Ag Today Wednesday, February 10, 2016
Wednesday, February 10, 2016
California farmers reap record sales in record drought
Ellen Knickmeyer and Scott Smith
FRESNO — A new state report shows California farmers reaping record sales despite the epic drought, thriving even as city-dwellers have been forced to conserve water, household wells have run dry and fish have died.
California's 76,400 farms recorded $53.5 billion in sales in 2014, the year Gov. Jerry Brown declared the state in a drought emergency and launched what in 2015 became mandatory conservation for cities and towns. The sales figures are the most recent annual ones released by the state agriculture department.
Ag Today Monday, February 8, 2016
Monday, February 8, 2016
Rural water providers lose out over fee claim
By Harold Kruger
A Sacramento judge this week turned aside the protests of rural water providers who claimed the state won't reimburse them for water conservation activities that could cost millions of dollars.
The entities, including the Glenn-Colusa Irrigation District, sued last year, alleging the Commission on State Mandates had denied their test claims.
Under changes to the Water Code, agricultural water suppliers that serve more than 25,000 irrigated acres have to measure the volume of water delivered to each farm gate and adopt a pricing structure based on the quantity...
Ag Today Friday, February 5, 2016
Friday, February 5, 2016
Los Angeles Times
Why your Super Bowl vegetable platter might cost more this year
By Geoffrey Mohan
Produce seller Rich Uchida is sitting pretty for the Super Bowl right about now. Because it turns out California not only has the 50th edition of the game, it has the Buffalo wings and veggie platters cornered, too.
Uchida's employer, Duda Farm Fresh Foods, is the king of celery sticks, and isn't into cauliflower much.
In an industry where timing is everything, both of those positions are important, because it's been a wild season in the winter produce market dominated by California growers, who...
Ag Today Thursday, February 4, 2016
Thursday, February 4, 2016
HLB found among Southern California trees, insects
By David Castellon
For nearly eight years, California’s citrus industry has lived in fear of Asian citrus psyllids infected with the huanglongbing bacteria migrating across the southern part of the state and heading north, where they could infect commercial citrus trees and devastate the state’s citrus industry.
Some of those worst fears are being realized as word is spreading that a group of psyllids found to be infected with the bacteria — also known as “HLB” — have been found since the middle of last year in the Southern California community...
Ag Today Wednesday, February 3, 2016
Wednesday, February 3, 2016
Coalition moving to demolish Klamath River dams without Congress’s assent
By David Siders and Ryan Sabalow
Federal officials and the states of California and Oregon said Tuesday they will press forward with plans to demolish four hydroelectric dams on the Klamath River, despite resistance from Congress.
The announcement comes after a set of demolition, water-sharing and habitat restoration agreements stalled in Washington.
By separating dam removal from a broader pact, the states and power company that owns the dams, Portland, Ore.-based PacifiCorp, will seek to move forward with their own funding – and without congressional approval.
The new accord, however,...
Ag Today Tuesday, February 2, 2016
Tuesday, February 2, 2016
San Francisco Chronicle
Northern California salmon run devastated, again, by drought
By Kurtis Alexander
One of California’s last great salmon runs tallied a perilously low number of surviving offspring in 2015, scientists said Monday, marking a second year of drought-driven problems for the Sacramento River chinook, which loom on the verge of extinction.
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Fisheries Service reported that just 3 percent of the run’s juvenile salmon survived their historic migration to sea, again dying in large numbers because the river was simply too shallow and too warm to tolerate.
State and federal officials, after witnessing a...