Consider desalinization before Delta tunnels

Published: Thursday, Nov. 7, 2013 - 6:11 am

Re "Delta project has many unanswered questions" (Viewpoints, Nov. 6): The cost of taking more Delta water through tunnels, through the San Joaquin Valley and over the Tehachapi Mountains should be compared to the cost of a closer source -- desalinating Southern California's adjacent seawater.

Arab Countries derive most of their water from desalinization. Desalinization is becoming more efficient. Costs of providing more water from the Delta will surely increase.

More diversion of Delta water should be avoided. The State Department of Water Resources advises that our snowpack is diminishing. It is estimated that we may be losing as much as 100,000 acre feet of snow pack every year.

Before pursuing a tunnel plan, therefore, consider this non-Delta alternative, more reliable in the future, and probably less costly. A lobbyist for Southern California interests told me years ago: "Don't worry about more export capacity George. It will be cheaper to draw water from the sea!"

-- George Basye, Sacramento

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