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On the same page with Senator Feinstein, for about 15 minutes

In a letter to the Association of California Water Agencies (ACWA), Senator Dianne Feinstein has made it clear that she strongly opposes H.R. 1837, the Sacramento-San Joaquin Valley Water Reliability Act, and will work to defeat it in the Senate.

The senator called this bill a distraction from completion of the Bay Delta Conservation Plan (BDCP), studies for more storage, passing a water bond and facilitating more water transfers, groundwater banking, and water recycling. We don’t agree with her about all these measures. But we certainly agree with and appreciate her opposition to an approach that seeks “gains for certain water users at the expense of others” and “abandons our fundamental state and federal environmental laws.”

However, she herself seems to have forgotten about that last part this week when the Senate Energy and Water Subcommittee met and she pressured the Bureau of Reclamation to give junior water rights holders like Westlands Water District a minimum of 45 percent of their contract allocation. She suggested that could be done if federal pumping restrictions were eased.

Junior rights holders were allocated 45 percent last year, but last year had above-average early rain and snowpack. The Bureau thinks a 30 percent allocation is reasonable for this year, when precipitation appears to be down. In drought years like 1977 and 1992, the allocation was 25 percent.

See the letter to ACWA here, along with a February letter from Senator Feinstein and Senator Boxer to the House Natural Resources Committee, also opposing H.R. 1837.

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  • Dr. Francis Coila
    April 11, 2012, 6:36 pm

    Senator Feinstein,

    A few years back I had written to you about changing climate and the water supply and a balanced system for all users and the wild life systems that rely on the water as well.

    You seem to have become joined at the hip with corporate subsidized AG business to the exclusion of all others. This is not the leadership any of us want here in the state.

    My suggestion was to restore the rivers so my great grand children to come could see the benefit of wildlife and salmon.

    Instead we have seen the Eel River be diverted for more and more subsidized wine acres in the upper north of the state and flows reduced to essentially toxic algae blooms in the river. So much that for half the summer, people are warned not to even wade in the water, forget about the fish.

    Secondly you have facilitated another group of subsidized AG-industry farmers from the far south to export food sources to lands=countries who don’t need them or want them to disrupt local farmers of those countries and throw them off their lands when they can’t compete with the subsidized industrial food. The effect of this policy is the same subsidized “farm” industries can then buy that land cheaply and convert it to industrialized farming without the residence from the local farm communities.

    Your ridiculous support for the AG businesses here on the Delta make your fitness for office to represent me and all Californians with regards to California’s future water needs very suspect.

    I will not support you further in elections or ‘silence’ . It appears your age and personal bias has clouded your judgment about what the future of California can be.

    This is for the young people to decide, it is their world to live in. Ultimately, it will be the right of all living things and not just to support more mining of the earth’s resources for profit. Mono-cultural Farming is already a failed experiment in all areas it has been used, one just has to look at the devastation it has left on the land after it passes to see the effects.

    Forests, prairies, or rivers or mountains . . . nothing is left in its destructive path. The non functioning delta Eco-system and ignorance of the politicians elected and led by Corporate lobbysists certainly don’t care about your children or future children’s standards of living… but you should.