An Example of Wrong-Thinking in the Central Valley


The Tehachapi-Cummings water district is currently debating whether to rejoin the BDCP. Previously they provided $400K funding but then dropped out. The district’s general manager, John Martin, recommended participating at the 100 percent level in order to receive more data (more reliable information about the project moving forward).

As reported in the Tehachapi News December 31, 2014:

    “Historically, the district has never imported more than 45 percent of its water allocation from the State Water Project, or 8,000 acre-feet. It’s sold some of its water to other agencies from the remaining 55 percent.”

    “That is expected to change.”

    “With all the permanent crops that are being planted, we’ll be approaching 100 percent (demand) within the next five to seven years. With the agriculture demand increasing up here and the growth of the communities, the city and CSDs, we will need to bring up water in greater quantities in the future.”

Where’s the thinking? Most of that water increase, as we know, is the agriculture, not the communities. Permanent crops (aka almonds) are among the most thirsty year-round crops being planted.

There’s a lack of water. There will be less water in the future. Let’s plant more almonds!

Shouldn’t someone stop and say “We’re running out of water! Maybe we should switch some of this acreage back to line crops and stop expanding our footprint of crops in the desert.” ???

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