California farmers, grappling with a record drought that’s parching their fields and livelihoods, call on Gov. Brown (D-CA) to place a moratorium on the water-intensive extreme oil and gas extraction process known as hydraulic fracturing, or fracking.
With more than 80,000 farms producing about $45 billion in annual profits, California is the nation’s largest farm state, and agriculture is California’s leading industry.
The State Water Project recently announced that it would be cutting off water deliveries for the first time in its 54-year history, and the federal government announced last week that farmers should expect to receive no water from the Central Valley Project.
Additionally, the price for water has increased tenfold, from $135 an acre-foot last year to $1,350 an acre-foot …
“Amid severe drought conditions, California officials announced Friday that they would not send any water from the state’s vast reservoir system to local agencies beginning this spring, an unprecedented move that affects drinking water supplies for 25 million people and irrigation for 1 million acres of farmland.
The announcement marks the first time in the 54-year history of the State Water Project that such an action has been taken, but it does not mean that every farm field will turn to dust and every city tap will run dry.
The 29 agencies that draw from the state’s water-delivery system have other sources, although those also have been hard-hit by the drought.
Many farmers in California’s Central Valley, one of the most productive agricultural regions in the country, also draw water from a separate system of federally run reservoirs and canals, but that system also will deliver just a fraction of its normal water allotment this year.”