WATER, WATER EVERYWHERE; HOW THE BOARDS DID SHRINK
WATER, WATER EVERYWHERE: NOR ANY DROP TO DRINK
(Rime of the Ancient Mariner - Samuel Taylor Coleridge)
People obsessed with climate unfortunately are obsessed with climate. Solutions that really work do not appear to be in their playbook.
On a regular basis, California races from drought to deluge. California has just had three years of drought. However, this winter, California storms dropped tens of trillions of gallons in the state and more than a dozen feet of snow in the Sierra Nevada mountains. This cycle of weather has recurred throughout California history.
However, the birth of the modern environmental movement in the 1970s put a halt to any large water projects. The amount of water surging into the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta this year could have filled a reservoir the size of Yosemite’s Hetch Hetchy almost every 24 hours. However, 95% of the Delta’s storm water went into the Pacific Ocean.
More reservoirs are very much needed in northern California. Reservoirs store runoff and help prevent flooding. California voters have approved eight water bonds since 2000 that authorize some $27 Billion in funding for various water projects. Very little of the money has gone to storage or flood control. Politicians buy off green support for water bonds by promising to spend a large share of their proceeds on ecosystem restoration. Only $2.7 Billion of a $7.5 Billion water bond passed by voters in 2014 has been allocated for storage. Not one of the seven storage projects selected by California for funding has begun construction. One delay is the government permitting morass. Another delay could be potential lawsuits.
The water policies in California are affecting the overburdened Colorado River which supplies six other states and California. It does not appear that the recent storms will bolster the Colorado and supply will be restricted for all seven states if an agreement to curb usage by the end of January is not reached. Elections do matter!
One person with a belief is a social power equal to 99 who have only interests.
John Stuart Mill