Sunday, December 23, 2007
Yolo County is becoming another battleground in the California Water Wars
No more water for Westlands Water District !!The Daily Democrat and Surf Putah have expressed concerns about the recent purchase of agricultural property in Yolo County California by the Westlands Water District from southern California. Westlands has also purchased property in northern California along the McCloud River recently. Westlands is also infamous as the source of the selenium-poisoned irrigation drainwater that caused the environmental disaster at Kesterton Reservoir in 1987. Twenty years later the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation still has no solution for the selenium toxic waste disposal problem from Westlands. "The Bureau of Reclamation is re-evaluating options for providing drainage service to the San Luis Unit of the Central Valley Project." The selenium-poisoned toxic drainwater from Westlands is no longer being collected at Kesterson Reservoir, so presumably the farms are hiding their toxic waste in a multitude of smaller local toxic waste dumps. If Westlands has money available to buy up properties all over California perhaps they should be using that money instead to clean up the toxic waste disaster that they are creating with their selenium-poisoned toxic drainwater.
A better water policy - NO water whatsoever for Westlands Water District ??"It would be far more effective and ten times less expensive to retire the land and shut off the irrigation pumps." (Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility) I agree with PEER that all irrigation should cease in the Westlands district. This has many potential benefits for the water crises that California is currently facing. The clean water supply that Westlands currently turns into toxic waste should instead be made available to other users who need it, thus helping to solve California's water supply problems.
Pumping massive amounts of water out of the Sacramento - San Joaquin Delta and sending it south to Westlands is a major factor in the destruction of agriculture and wildlife in The Delta. Ceasing the water deliveries to Westlands will immediately solve many of the problems of The Delta.
It would be insane to bankrupt our state building dams and canals all over northern California to feed the insatiable water demands of Westlands. Why should northern California and The Delta be destroyed to satisfy the water demands of a few rich, powerful farmers in southern California?
It was foolish to ever begin irrigation on the selenium-tainted soils of Westlands. Instead of wasting billions of taxpayer dollars on building unnecessary dam and canal projects lets buy out the farms of Westlands and put an end to that tragic mistake.
Contaminated valley drain water a problem yet unsolved - sfgate 19july2005.
Experts cast doubt on toxic water plan - CalCoast News 18jan2006.
Water Policy Sacramento CA and California River Conservation.
California Delta Directory - Recreation, Conservation & Water Policy. (42 websites listed).
Tags: California Delta, dam, water, water supply, water policy.