Ag Today March 9, 2020
Lois Henry: Collaboration is the new game in California water [Bakersfield Californian]
If agriculture in the valley is going to survive, water leaders need to get cozy with new ideas and new allies....There were multiple examples given throughout the day of similar joint projects, from using rice fields to grow bugs for baby salmon, to flooding other farm fields for temporary habitat for migrating birds. Farmers got water, fish and fowl got a boost and no one went broke doing it. Speakers encouraged summit attendees to work with larger, more diverse groups to find similar opportunities.
Opinion: Own up to bringing water...
Ag Today March 6, 2020
Coronavirus snarls trans-Pacific shipping and ripples through U.S. business [Wall Street Journal]
The coronavirus epidemic is upending the carefully calibrated logistics of global shipping, as plunging exports from China disrupt the trade of American goods, especially farm products such as fruit and meat destined for Asia. Congestion at Chinese ports and interrupted sailings have squeezed space on China-bound vessels and created an imbalance of the 40-foot long refrigerated containers used to ship fruit, meats and other perishables on three-week voyages across the Pacific, with many stuck on the China side. The traffic jam is pushing up transportation prices for U.S. exporters...
Ag Today March 5, 2020
KCWA's 2020 Water Summit focuses on President's memo on water allocation and fish [KBAK-TV, Bakersfield]
The Water Association of Kern County held its fourth Water Summit in Bakersfield at the mechanics Bank Arena on Wednesday. This theme this year was H20 2020 Vision….Julie Vance, a regional manager for the California Department of Fish and Wildlife spoke about how the timing of pumping at the delta can “really improve things for species without taking water for the people who ultimately need it.”…Cannon Michael, of Bowles Farming Co., offered his perspective as a farmer to the panel, acknowledging the huge water deficit the...
Ag Today March 4, 2020
PG&E tells judge it can’t commit to more tree trimmers to prevent wildfires [Los Angeles Times]
Lawyers for Pacific Gas & Electric said the utility can’t commit to hiring hundreds more tree trimmers in the way that a federal judge wants to cut the risk of starting more catastrophic wildfires in California.
U.S. District Judge William Alsup ordered the utility last month to add at least 1,100 more tree trimmers to help prevent trees and branches from falling onto its power lines and igniting. The judge is overseeing PG&E’s criminal probation imposed after its natural gas lines blew up a San Francisco...
Ag Today March 3, 2020
UC Berkeley water report sinks California farm industry says valley assemblyman [KMJ Radio, Fresno]
A groundbreaking new report released Monday afternoon spells out the economic disaster for farmers in the Central Valley and statewide as a result of California’s water policies. The report done by University of California, Berkeley, economists Dr. David Sunding and Dr. David Roland-Holst shows that the California economy will suffer unless responsible, balanced water reforms are enacted in the effort to achieve groundwater sustainability goals in the San Joaquin Valley….The report was supported by the “Water Blueprint for the San Joaquin Valley”, a broad coalition of local...
Ag Today March 2, 2020
Westlands Water District gets permanent U.S. contract for massive irrigation deliveries [Los Angeles Times]
The Interior Department on Friday awarded the nation’s largest farm water district a permanent entitlement to annual irrigation deliveries that amount to roughly twice as much water as the nearly 4 million residents of Los Angeles use in a year. Gaining a permanent contract for so much cheap Central Valley Project water represents a major milestone for Westlands Water District, which supplies some of the state’s wealthiest growers and has long-standing ties to Interior Secretary David Bernhardt. But the new pact, which would take effect June 1,...
Ag Today February 28, 2020
Gov. Newsom’s dad helped protect California mountain lions. Now his son faces the fallout [Sacramento Bee]
Thirty years ago, California voters approved a ballot initiative championed by Gov. Gavin Newsom’s father, William Newsom, that banned mountain lion hunting in the state. The initiative was approved in part because it secured protections for ranchers to shoot mountain lions that kill or maim their livestock. Now, the father’s crusade is a thorn in the son’s paw….The initiative contains language that says the state’s wildlife regulators can’t “adopt any regulation that conflicts with or supersedes” with certain provisions in Proposition 117. The ranching associations...
Ag Today February 27, 2020
Nearly 25 percent of California in ‘moderate drought’ status, federal monitor says [Sacramento Bee]
Hours before California water officials measure the Sierra snowpack for the third time in 2020, the latest data released by a consortium of federal agencies says almost one-quarter of California’s land area is now in “moderate drought” status, including essentially all of Sacramento County. More than 23 percent of the state is considered to be at a moderate drought level, up from just under 10 percent one week earlier, according to weekly maps released Thursday by the U.S. Drought Monitor. The drought area has expanded from a...
Ag Today February 26, 2020
Valley water districts want more water. Federal agency says that can’t happen. Here’s why [Fresno Bee]
The federal agency that serves as the nation’s largest supplier of water announced Tuesday that there will be reduced water shipments for the central San Joaquin Valley in 2020 – a decision the Bureau of Reclamation said was informed by extra-dry conditions. Agricultural water service contractors of the Central Valley Project south of the Delta were told they will receive 15% of their contract supply in the initial 2020 allocation….Westlands Water District in western Fresno and Kings counties, which describes itself as the nation’s largest...
Ag today February 25, 2020
Historically dry: This could be first February on record in Redding with no rain [Redding Record Searchlight]
This is shaping up to be the driest February on record in the North State. Not a drop of precipitation has fallen this month. This could be the first February since records started in 1893 that that has occurred....“And you know, in 2018 we had a dry early spring, but then we had a late spring storm event that really turned things around,” Elizabeth Hadley, the Bureau of Reclamation’s deputy area manager, said Monday...Despite this long stretch of dry weather, Hadley said Lake Shasta...