Drought was foreseen, not emergency

Published: Friday, Jan. 31, 2014 - 7:10 am

Re "Agribusiness excess is reason California again running dry” (Viewpoints, Jan. 26): California is not experiencing a drought emergency. For an event to be an emergency, it must be unexpected, unforeseen, or a sudden occurrence. Far from a sudden or unexpected drop in precipitation, California is transitioning to a warmer, dryer climate because of global climate change. The sooner that state and local governments and agribusiness stop treating the current lack of water as an emergency, and acknowledge that we must adjust to a future with much less available water, the better off we are going to be. California needs to immediately adjudicate all groundwater basins in the state and control the use of groundwater. Instead of spending billions on water tunnels, the state needs to invest in solar desalination plants. California is going to have to change its mix of crops to account for much reduced water supplies. State officials and farmers should study agriculture in the Middle East. -- Bill Kopper, Davis

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