Felice Pace 
Member since Jul 16, 2015


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Re: “A Solution for California's Water Woes

In this deeply muddled article, Will Parrish asks us to believe that "adjudication" is the solution to the massive overallocation of water in California. He appears to believe that an "adjudication" would not over-allocate water and he holds up the Klamath River Basin as an example of a place where "adjudication" "contributed to saving fish and the environment on the Klamath River in Southern Oregon."

The idea the fish and the environment have been saved on the Klamath would be news to those of us who live here. While we have dodjed the bullet of another massive adult fish kill so far, each year many of the young salmon descending the Klamath succem to fish deiseases that are exaccerbated by poor water quality and low flows. This year up to 100% of the young salmon are diseased and only 8% even make it to the estauary, much less the ocean. Does that look like a fisherie that has been "saved" Mr. Parrish?

And as for "adjudication", the Scott River (a Klamath tributary) has been "fully adjudicated" since 1980 but that has not stopped the progressive dewatering of the River and the extirpation of its salmon runs from what, prior to dewatering, was the best salmon habitat in the Basin.

The truth is that the State of California has all the tools necessary to properly manage its surface water. For example, Fish & Game Code 5937 gives the Department of Fish and Wildlife the power to force any and all owners of dams and diversions to allow enough water to stay in the stream to keep any and all fish habitat below the dam or diversion "in good condition." But as Steinstra and Martin reported in 1991 in the SF Chronicle, the "highest levels" in Sactramento order DFW's wardens not to enforce that law.

There is no majic bullet that will bring supply and demand for water into balance in California; that will require political will. Only if the people demand good water management will that happen. Otherwise, as has been the case in California for far too long, water will continue to flow toward money.

3 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by Felice Pace on 07/16/2015 at 4:22 PM

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