Random Thoughts – Randocity!

State of Emergency: California Aqueduct vs Drought

Posted in california, drought, water shortage by commorancy on February 28, 2009

So, Arnold Schwarzenegger has now declared a state of emergency for California with regards to the ‘3 year drought’.   So, apparently, California’s (specifically Northern California) water supplies are severely low.   The rain we’ve had recently has helped, yes.  Apparently, the amount of rainfall hasn’t been substantial enough to raise the resevoirs by any substantial amount.  So, counties and other municipalities want to enact water rationing. Ok, so that’s the problem.

Plug up the drain already!

On the other hand, California decided to be neighborly and build the California Aqueduct to pump water from Northern California to Southern California.  Ok, so does this make any sense?  Northern California is in a state of emergency and under water rationing.  All the while, the California Aqueduct continues to pump Northern California’s water supply down to Los Angeles.  My question is.. why?   If we need the water up here, cut the LA basin off.  They didn’t have the water before the aqueduct was built, they can live without it until Northern California’s water supplies have recovered.

Why do we continue to pump at all under drought conditions?

Under a drought situation, why does Northern California continue to pump water down to Southern California from Northern California reserves (even with restrictive limits)?  This setup makes no sense.  Yes, perhaps the water supplies are just as low in LA.  Yes, perhaps LA has no other water supplies to tap for LA use easily.  Oh well.  Northern California has its own drought to deal with and under these situations, the drain to LA needs to be plugged until further notice.

On the other hand, San Diego is apparently fed water from the Rocky Mountain runoff (which in 2008/2009 winter has been especially heavy).  So, why doesn’t LA set up their own pumping system and pump water up from San Diego instead of taking it away from Northern California?  Duh, San Diego is a heck of a lot closer to LA than Sacramento!  Worse, who knows just how much water evaporates before it makes its hundreds of miles trek from Sacramento to LA?  This Aqueduct is not efficient at all.

Los Angeles, find another supply.  Sacramento, stop the water siphoning!

LA needs to find another water source.. like, for example, getting it from San Diego’s Colorado River run off.  This situation is such that Northern California does not need to be pumping and redistributing its stored water to other parts of the state.  This water needs to stay in Northern California where it originated.  Who cares how much the Aqueduct cost or how many people it took to build it?  Under drought conditions, the water siphoning to LA needs to stop and that water needs to feed Northern California resevoirs.

If the Aqueduct stopped flowing, Northern California could replenish its own resevoirs and get rid of this ridiculous drought that appears to be mostly manmade.

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